Windows Still Sucks

Seems that Dr. Heinous and I weren’t the only ones experiencing the fun that is a totally unjustified Windows O/S FUBAR. Pixy has also been experiencing the joy that is Bill Gates hellspawn.

I got home this evening to discover that there’d been a blackout while I was away, and all the computers had shut down. So I power them all back up, and the Linux boxes seem to come up (even the broken one – see comments to previous post). But not the Windows box. Oh no. It won’t even try to boot. I put the Knoppix CD in, and it doesn’t seem to like that either.

I want to check on the Linux boxes, but I normally access those via SSH, either from my Windows box – which is dead – or from my Notebook – which might as well be dead, since after I got it back from “repair”, where it was wiped and reinstalled, I wiped it and reinstalled it again, whereupon it promptly went back to its crashy ways so that I never managed to install any sort of useful software on it.

So I have:

One Linux box which has the best part of two terabytes of fansubbed anime on it, and which I can now ping, and that’s about it.
One Linux box which was working fine right up until I tried to do a backup, whereupon it developed a severe case of FRUDS.*
One Windows box which will not boot, apparently, from anything.
One Windows notebook which is just about capable of playing a round of Minesweeper between reboots. If you choose the smallest game area.

Yep, that sounds like Windows. DVD misreads and power failures should not cause the ENTIRE system to be as fucked up as a terminal crack ho. Of course, in fairness, what caused the fubar on the misread DVD was that Dr.H turned the power off in an effort to break XP out of a hard lock. You know, the more I see of XP, the less I like it. I run on Win2k, and I don’t give a damn about Microsoft not supporting it anymore; as long as programs are still written that will run on it, I’m happy as I am. Ever wonder why there are no “user mods” out there? I suspect it’s because Microsoft would sue them till they bled white, but it’s really a damn shame that none of the crackers out there want to put their so-called brain power into actually improving the system instead of breaking it.

Related Note: Friday night, I was hanging out at Skirmishers, getting my new Dragonstorm deck run over by Control decks, and the shop owner’s husband showed me his Linux desktop, which runs Office 2003 (with some minor glitches) and Office 97 like it was written for it. So he says. Although he got the laptop out, I didn’t have time to play with it between rounds and see for myself.

I wonder if the learning curve is worth it, especially since I’d have to give up a lot of games and such. Does anyone have any knowledge of how the major A/V players are with Linux? Giving up the animé also is asking too much!

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5 Responses to Windows Still Sucks

  1. jtappan says:

    I use both Windows and Linux and all that I can say is that there are tradeoffs. For “serious” stuff ranging from word-processing to high-end web development Linux is as good as Windows and in some ways better. For “fun” stuff ranging from games to video editing with off-the-shelf software, Windows is way ahead. (My understanding is that the real pros who write custom rendering software for custom server farms all use Linux.)

    As for anime, you can play some of it on Linux but you’ll probably find some things that will only play on Windows.

    Don’t let anybody kid you: BOTH operating systems can get hosed. With Linux you can always fix it if you’re smart enough, but non-gurus will sometimes find it easier to reformat and reinstall. With Windows R-and-R is the only choice, and with the newer versions you get to call Redmond and beg for permission to reuse the operating system that you purchased.

  2. Andrew F. says:

    If Pixy’s Windows box won’t even boot Knoppix, he’s got a hardware problem. Not to say that XP is the pinnacle of OS design or anything, but blaming Microsoft every time something goes wrong with a Windows box is kind of shortsighted.

    That said, Linux can be a lot of fun to use if you know what to expect of it. I don’t know how long you’ve been using Microsoft operating systems, but I got my start with MS-DOS in 1992, and starting out with Linux felt like learning to use a computer all over again. It may not be so bad if you stay on the desktop and don’t bother with the shell, but being a power user on Linux all but requires command-line proficiency. Also, remember that Linux is not a monolith like Windows. There are thousands of distributions available (though maybe ten or twenty are really widely used), and procedures that work on one might not work on another (say, getting a program to run when you boot up your PC). MS is just now coming out with the first new Windows release since XP in 2001; many Linux distros release twice a year, and it’s possible that something which worked with version 4.0 won’t work with version 5.0. There are a lot of advantages to this paradigm, but ease of use is not one of them.

    If you’re unsure, you can always configure your PC to dual-boot Linux and Windows. If your webhost is worth its salt, it should offer shell access, which could help you get a feel for the Linux command line.

    There are plenty of fine media players available for Linux; if I had to name one I’d pick MPlayer, which plays most anything without requiring you to install any codecs.

  3. Ubu Roi says:

    Yeah, the learning curve to get that command line proficiency is what’s really stopped me for some time now. I started with MS-DOS about the same time you did; 8088 processors were the going thing when I finally gave up the Commodore ghost and went PC. Only considered myself proficient with it after a few years of work and one college course.

  4. Pingback: Twenty Sided ? Blog Archive » Linux is Not for the Timid

  5. Pixy says:

    Yeah, it was a hardware problem. Of sorts.

    Removing and reinstalling the video card fixed it.

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