So I went to bed last night at 12:45 a.m. or so thanks to Hewlett Packard.
I was working on my brother-in-law’s system and re-loading it from scratch. Now as is common he didn’t have the original CDs for it so I had to come up with a copy of XP Home to install using the key on the side of his computer case.
Fucking HP decided to use a standard non-OEM version of XP home for that computer so the XP Home CDs I have won’t activate. Thankfully I found a place online that sells copies of the original HP re-install CDs. I’m down $27 or so but I’ll have re-load CDs in a few days.
Here’s the annoying part though - there ARE no original CDs that ship with the system. As with many systems these days they have a way to burn recovery CDs from the hard drive onto blank CD-Rs. Thus passing the manufacturing cost of those CDs on to the customer.
I actually don’t have TOO much of a problem with that. What I DO have a problem with is the fact that they won’t sell you recovery CDs if your hard drive dies. There’s been a couple of cases where people have managed to wheedle a set of CDs out of them but by and far OEMs now REFUSE TO GIVE YOU REPLACEMENT RELOAD MEDIA EVEN IF YOU WANT TO PAY FOR IT.
What this all comes down to is two things:
1) A horrible waiving of responsibility on the part of the OEMs leaving the customer stuck with no way to re-load the system if the drive with the “recovery partition” fails.
2) Another example of why the Microsoft Monopoly is a bad thing. No recovery CDs force people to buy a completely new copy of Windows if they want to re-load that PC.
Is it any wonder that people are pirating Windows? Is it any wonder that people are moving to other operating systems like Linux or OSX?
Neither surprises me. Frankly a lot of people are tired of dancing with a giant who constantly has his hands in your pockets.
I finally broke down and installed a Windows machine for my self at the house. As I said before it was cheaper for me to buy a used system that had re-load CDs and a valid Windows XP Pro sticker on it, (including shipping), that to buy a copy of Windows Xp by itself.
And frankly while there are a few things I have that are Windows-only the great majority of things that I do or that I want to do have substitutes in a lot of other operating systems.
*hauls out and dons flame-proof suit*
So I’m going to call it here - there’s no reason for Windows to exist any more. There. I said it.
There’s a TON of applications out there for other operating systems and almost all of them have the same capabilities, barring deliberate incompatibilities - yes I’m looking at you Microsoft Office 2007, or equivalent functionality.
Most. Users. Don’t. Need. Windows.
8 out of 10 times they are using it because it came with the computer or there is a _single_ application that has no equivalent in other operating systems. And with the number of people writing free software packages out there that las part isn’t even true any more.
I’m hoping the industry is changing enough with the Vista debacle to maybe start supporting something besides Windows when they create things. *sigh* Unfortunately Microsoft still has a lot of money to pour into the market to keep their monopoly intact so likely things will not change very quickly.
In other news I picked our first watermelon yesterday just to see how ripe they are. It was young but edible. Not very big though.
We need a LOT more rain. I’m going to have to start running a sprinkler in the garden because the soaker hoses just aren’t doing it. Everything out there is starting to yellow and some of the melons have already died. I suspect this will not end well.
It doesn’t really bother me though. As a first attempt the garden did turn out well enough and saved us a little on vegetables over the summer. Next year hopefully will be better. I’m planning on saving the seeds from the watermelons so I don’t have to order more next year.
That’s one of the nice things about heirloom species - they aren’t bred to be sterile so the seeds can be used for next season. And these watermelons are definitely not seedless as my wife will attest. Unfortunately I only got the VanDorens to produce - the midnights seem to have been crowded out unfortunately. The seeds weren’t all that expensive and since I stupidly planted too many this year I’ll be able to buy another batch for next year and conserve them. Seeds of wisdom from seeds of melons. ^_^
Need to pick up orange bags today...