Tag Archives: Microsoft

The Slacker Dreads MS Windows Service Packs

Back in the dark ages of my computering life. I used an operating system known as Microsoft Windows®. I still occasionally play around in Windows these days.

I have (had, the drive failed on me recently) an XP Pro installation on my desktop system for playing games only. It’s crippled… no networking installed at all. I also have an installation of Win 7 on my laptop. It’s just for fun and education. I’m the family computer nerd, so everyone comes to me for help. They don’t run Linux… yet. MUAHAHAHA! Anyway, I have to stay comfortable with how MS products work so I can still be helpful to the unfortunate souls still using that OS.

As some of you who know me may remember, the camel that broke the straw’s back for me with MS Windows was the fact that I had numerous catastrophic system failures due to corrupted installations of various Service Packs on XP back in ’06. The last one may have actually been a faulty Seagate hard drive, to be fair to MS. However, the last one was the last one for me. I went to Linux full time within a few days of that event.

Now, here comes a new Service Pack (#1) for my Win 7 installation. UH-OH! I’m very gun shy about Service Packs, folks. This time, though, the OS is not my primary computer tool, so what’s the worry. If it boogers up, I can just reinstall. No great loss… just more minutes of my life sucked out of existence by Microsoft. Anyway, I decided to go for it yesterday. The install was fast and painless. And best of all… the system rebooted into a working Win 7 OS. Cool, huh?

Kudos to MS. They may have finally gotten something right with this new Win 7. So, just what was Vista? XP’s Millennium Edition? Oh, wait… Vista was the beta, of course. I wonder how many folks actually paid $300 to beta test for MS on that one. All that testing paid off. Thanks beta folks! 🙂

OK, I’m outta’ here…

~Eric

NOTE: All derogatory comments regarding Microsoft and the Windows® operating system are absolutely true… er, I mean are absolutely in jest. jk, as Generation Text likes to say. Can you imagine what Evolution is going to make their childrens’ childrens’ childrens’ thumbs look like? Heh!

5 Things I Love Most About MS Windows

My first experience with Microsoft Windows was version 3.1. It was installed on a PC in my brother’s construction company office back in ’93. It was COOL! I’ve loved MS Windows ever since. Here are my top 5 reasons why:

  • numero cinco – I love MS Windows because it has more users than Charlie Sheen has drunken girlfriends; which serves to paint a LARGE target on it rather than on my actual operating system (Linux). Hackers and spammers are wise. They use Linux on their own systems and target the operating system that gives them the biggest bang for the byte. Thanks to Microsoft for being my shield.
  • numero cuatro – I love MS Windows because of all the times, while trying to learn the secrets of that OS, I visited boards and forums where helpful members there would use the code word RTFM to teach me how to do something. Many times, they would suggest that you RTFM even when there wasn’t an FM to R. Thanks to those MS Windows gurus, I learned what real community is NOT supposed to be like.
  • numero tres – I love MS Windows for making me dread Tuesdays even more than Mondays. The creation of the “patch Tuesday” updating methods for MS Windows operating systems was a stroke of genius that greatly changed folks’ attitudes about that previously most hated day of the week… Monday. I’m sure Monday is appreciative of this. The only good thing about Tuesdays these days is happy hour.
  • numero dos – the penultimate reason that I love MS Windows is because it is the Terminator of operating systems. It searches out other operating systems on its own and peripheral hard drives and terminates them. It won’t even brook the presence of another MS Windows OS on same drive. It is a very anti-social operating system. It does NOT play well with other operating systems. You have to trick it for it to behave.
  • numero uno – the very tippy-top mostest for sure reason that I love MS Windows is that it replenished my faith in the fact that even chubby computer nerds like Steve Ballmer can make a bazillion bucks by doing practically nothing of note; except for being in the right place and being friends with the right guy (Bill Gates) at the right time.

=====

The Disclaimer: In the last article here (5 Things I Hate Most About Linux), and in this article, I tend to tease a bit about Microsoft and their Windows operating system. Yes, I have had my bad experiences with that OS. Yes, I like to tease about MS Windows. And yes, it’s just for laughs. I actually feel that Microsoft changed the world with its innovations and ideas regarding operating systems and software. Oh, and I really don’t know Steve Ballmer well enough to be accusing him of being a chubby computer nerd.

Bing THIS!

Later…

~Eric

Russia to Use Linux Operating System

You know, I would think the Russians would have gone this route a long while back. I wonder what’s taken them so long.

I received my SlashDot email newsletter this morning which alerted me to this blog post regarding a Russian news story claiming that Vlad “Manly Man” Putin, that stud muffin of Russian politics, is ordering the mother land to make the switch to the Linux operating system. Now, is that cool or what? Go for it, comrades!

I’ll sleep better at night knowing the Russian nuclear arsenal isn’t being monitored/controlled using MS Windows. The thought of that gives all new meaning to “blue screen of death”, huh? At least with Linux, we can be assured that nuclear holocaust will be caused by a human error and not a “patch Tuesday” error.

Hmm… I wonder what distribution they’ll be running? Maybe REDhat? Better dead than MS* HA! I kill me.

Later…

~Eric

*Just kidding. I use and have liked Microsoft products for years. I just don’t use them that much anymore. :wink

Update This!

It seems that I spend my life updating, upgrading, or patching stuff these days? Ever feel that way?

I never used to have to update my coffee pot or my old AM radio. It’s such a pain in the posterior area to have to update everything from my sprinkler timer to my closet mainframe. I even have to update stuff online… my software for my boards, blogs, websites, etc. Man! It seems every day I have to update something. How did it get like this?

Was it all those Patch Tuesdays that Microsoft started? Nah… we were updating stuff before MS came along. They just perfected the process. And on that note, did you ever have an update/upgrade/patch that went off without a hitch? I had a few. However, I’ve also had my share of catastrophic failures thanks to updates or patches.

As a matter of fact, there was one particular patch BOOM! that resulted in me giving up on MS Windows a few years ago. I went to GNU/Linux 100% of the time. The patch that broke the camel’s back, so to speak, was the fourth catastrophic patch failure I’d had on XP in three years. I just couldn’t take it anymore. I can’t say that Linux has behaved totally angelically either. But… But… with Linux, it’s usually mea culpa, not the damned update or patch.

I just recently got a notification that my phpBB3 software on one of my boards needs updating. Well, I’ve yet to run a phpBB3 update that did not cause me massive hair loss and gnashing of teeth. This one was no exception. “ERROR – line bla-bla of database file corrupt.” *sigh* Why bother? Is it worth all the trouble?

Unfortunately, it is worth all the trouble. Why? It’s mostly for security reasons. We patch and update because some arse 5000 miles away has found a new exploit on an otherwise perfectly running piece of software. Sadly, every time the developers release another perfectly running piece of software, the same (or another) rectal orifice will be busily working at screwing up the new version.

Times were a lot simpler before my coffee pot came with Internet access and Skype capabilities. Jeeez, man! I only wanted a cup of joe, you know.

Later…

~Eric

Image credit: enamel coffee pot ©2010 GSI Outdoors

Breaking Tech News – Novell Agrees to Takeover Bid

Attachmate, an investment group led by Francisco Partners, Golden Gate Capital and Thoma Bravo, has acquired Novell for $2.2 billon.

According to Novell’s press release, Attachmate bought Novell for $6.10 a share. There’s also this:

Novell also announced it has entered into a definitive agreement for the concurrent sale of certain intellectual property assets to CPTN Holdings LLC, a consortium of technology companies organized by Microsoft Corporation, for $450 million in cash…

Hmm… what effect, if any, is that going to have on Linux folks; specifically SuSE and OpenSuSE users. I wonder.

In a related article at The Register, Tim Morgan writes:

Jeff Hawn, Attachmate’s CEO and chairman, said that it would operate Novell as two business units: one for the SUSE Linux stack and another for all of the other Novell bits.

So SuSE will be run as a separate business entity. OK. Interesting.

Can’t help but wonder what those intellectual properties acquired by the MS-controlled consortium included.

This could get interesting, folks. Stay tuned.

Later…

~Eric

What’s So Bad About MS Windows?

A little musing on the perceived competitiveness between commercial and non-commercial operating systems by a user of both types.

Just a few moments ago on a forum that I frequent, a comment was made by a poster whom I have interacted with for quite some time and have much respect for; someone I would definitely call “friend”. This individual was replying to a comment I had made on a thread discussing MS Windows and Linux “us and them” mentality. The thread was initiated by a posting of a blog article called Linux users are hate filled criminal hackers by Locutus on it.toolbox.com.

Closing remarks from the Locutus’ article:

Do you think Linux advocates are really thought of like this by windows advocates? Why would they think this way? Do we project that image in our enthusiasm for Linux? Do we really hate windows that much?

His article is actually a reply itself to an anonymous commenter who had some rather unfriendly things to say about Linux users.

A snippet of the anonymous commenter’s post:

It always grates me when the discussion gets down to how rotten Windows is because of all the viruses etc. when it seems obvious, at least to Windows users, that most of that crap is written by Linux devotees. It seems hard to deny how obvious that is and a great part of the reason that Linux doesn’t suffer from it is because these guys are not going to ‘shit in their own back yard’.

Wow! With the tapping of a few keys, myself and the entire Linux community is suddenly stuffed into the same pigeon hole with the pimply-faced thirteen year old kid who just spent 11 days with no sleep so he could manipulate his botnet to attack the Girl Scout’s website because his chocolate mints arrived three weeks late.

Umm… cookies! Er, but I digress…

I commented on the thread discussing Locutus’ blog post, which had entered the typical MS Windows vs. Linux why and wherefore stage, by stating:

I have a system out in my shop right now that belongs to a friend who asked me to dual-boot Win/Ubuntu for him. He’s tired of Windows. He wants to try Linux. My list of converts is growing.

And yes, I do convert people to Linux. I don’t run around evangelizing on street corners or send SPAM emails about it. Usually, the folks come to me. They’re frustrated and tired of poor performance or corrupted system issues with their MS Windows and they’re looking for respite. I offer them some… in the form of Linux.

Is MS Windows bad? Is it an inferior product? No. I don’t think that on either count. Microsoft has created and marketed an operating system that is the primary operating system for personal (and many business) users the world over. Does it have some security issues? Yes. Is it perfect? Absolutely not. Is Linux perfect? Hell no. In my opinion, though, and for my needs, Linux performs the job better than MS Windows. That’s a personal choice.

There seems to be this underlying user angst (fan loyalty?) out there when it comes to operating systems. As I explained to my friend on the forum, I don’t care what you use for an operating system any more then I care whether you like Ford or Chevy automobiles. If MS Windows works for you, more power to you. If Mac is the apple of your eye, so be it. The perceived competition between commercial operating systems (MS Windows) and the non-commercial ones (Linux) is just silly to me. Linux supposedly controls 1% of the personal PC market right now. Ooooh! I bet MS is shakin’ in their Skechers®

I’ve said this before… use whatever works for you. Life is too damned short to be worried about what operating system weird uncle Bob uses when designing his tinfoil hats.

Have FUN… whatever you do!

~Eric