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August 29, 2008 11:03 AM 8/29/08

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...

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( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 29th, 2008 09:15 pm (UTC)
The next machine I have [once I have the sheckels] is going to be a homebrew with Linx or some variant thereof installed.. because I'll be damned if I buy Vista.

I've been looking, I can get compatible non-windows freeware versions of all my usual programs.
Aug. 29th, 2008 11:13 pm (UTC)
Indeed. Vista will NOT be installed at $work per even the most suitly of suits. It's that badly hated and having had hands on it once or twice I can't help but agree.

Re:icon - Harry Dresden?
Aug. 29th, 2008 11:27 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I hear you. I had sometime playing with it in the local Pc world. Now bear in mind that I've generally stuck with windows [or been stuck with it I suppose] for a large part of my life, and can usually figure out how to get a new machine to work within minutes and without a manual.

Vista still gave me a bad headache...it's just retarded, literally, as in hobbled both intentionally and by poor design. It's the Paris Hilton of O/S.. looks pretty but boy is it stupid!

Oh, and yeah the icon could be Dresden, but I actually made it originally for an RPG character of mine...a Walker between worlds.
Aug. 29th, 2008 11:33 pm (UTC)
I think the best way to describe Vista is that someone took XP and put at least one more layer of crap on top of it so it takes you just that much longer to get things done. And yes I agree it's retarded.

A Walker between worlds...I'd like that job...I really really would... ;-)
Aug. 29th, 2008 11:57 pm (UTC)
That's a way of describing it...although to be fair, I think windows is largely crap pretty much all the way down, at least until you hit command line level.

And yeah, I wouldn't mind that job either. Able to bend the flow of time to his will using the staff. Walking between times and alternate realities [as well as spaces], in order to fix glitches in the space/time continuum, and doing a little trans-temporal smuggling on the side!

Kinda equal parts Doctor Who and Han Solo, with a dash of Sliders, Quantum Leap and some Sapphire & Steel thrown in for weirdness! It was fun playing him...
Aug. 30th, 2008 12:10 am (UTC)
Y'know I started before DOS let alone Windows and I think it pretty much has peaked at XP. Windows 7 might have some new features but XP is mature and while it's _still_ crap it's at least fairly stable crap. (Within reason - millions of lines of code can't ever be completely stable IMHO.)

That character sounds like a story yet to be written and I can't help but say that identifying with Dresden and The Doctor he appeals to me. ;-)

Let me know if you decide to write about him in the future or are willing to hand his thread over to someone else. I'll bet if you went over all the RPG events in that character's life it would make a decent story.

A friend of mine used to run a Stalking The Night Fantastic+Fringeworthy campaign for a long time and was so well integrated with it that he had things affecting us that previous character changed in the 70's. He hasn't run it in years though unfortunately. :-(
Aug. 30th, 2008 12:24 am (UTC)
Hmm..you have a point. He did have some fairly epic story arcs before the game puttered out...

Might be worth combing over my old notes and saved emails and see what I could cobble together.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )



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