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Switching to Windows, Not as Easy as You Think 803

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the turnabout-is-fair-play dept.
rchapman writes "Mad Penguin writer Simon Gerber has published an amusing review of Windows XP as seen from a Linux users point of view. He really makes you feel like you are trying to use Windows for the first time after exclusively using Linux. The article covers everything from the hideous installer and its lack of partitioning/formatting capabilities to the utter wasteland that is the Windows desktop, devoid of useful applications and everything in between. A fun read."
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Switching to Windows, Not as Easy as You Think

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  • by xtal (49134) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:45AM (#14426421)
    Windows, properly set up and configured, is NOT the BSOD nightmare it used to be. It's entrenched and will be a very hard slog to fight against. For those wanting to change, there's a super-polished, UNIX user friendly, open-source running contender in Apple's OS X.

    How many of you own Apple notebooks? How many have blown away OS X to put a PPC linux distro on there?

    The fact is that Windows isn't that bad, and Linux is going to do a whole lot better on the desktop if we want to make inroads there. Linux is already taking over places where the user experience is negligible or tightly controlled, for example, in the embedded, RTOS, and industrial worlds.

    Fun article, but Microsoft moves forward, too. If Vista is a marketing success, then MS will dominate for a long time on the x86 desktop.

    • OS X is nice, no doubt about it. But it's NOT the "be-all end-all" OS some Mac-heads think it is. I have owned a Mac Mini for close to one year now, so I have used OS X extensively. And while it's nice, I find myself using my Linux/KDE-combo more and more, as opposed to using the Mini. I just think that KDE allows me to DO the things I want to do, and in a way I want to do them. In OS X, the system basically tells me that "Here, you do that like this". And if I find that way of working to be unsuitable for
    • its just that properly set up and configured with regard to Windows is more of an artifact of the OS teaching you how to behave rather than the other way around and setting it up is more of an art form that strives to induce stability.
      The content of the artform is rather subjective at times.
    • I've been using Linux at home since the mid 90's and at work for almost as long. Although my current job involves mostly Java development on UNIX, the company has a couple of applications which require Windows, so I run Windows on my desktop. It's a constantly frustrating experience. Everything from having to hit keys to cut and paste (And it's worse in command line windows) to the constantly crowded desktop. I can't alt-drag windows the way I can in my favorite Window manager, and if an application freezes
  • by kestasjk (933987) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:46AM (#14426427) Homepage
    http://os.newsforge.com/article.pl?sid=05/05/18/20 33216&from=rss [newsforge.com] Not sure if the author of the new one got the idea from this.
  • Flawed. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Lostie (772712) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:46AM (#14426428)
    How about doing a review from the perspective of someone who has never used a computer before - then lets see which one is easier to use (hint: the answer will be Windows XP by a massive margin).

    This "review" is flawed in so many ways it's not even funny - of COURSE a UNIX nerd is going to hate Windows, and vice versa. In fact it's even worse than the various Microsoft "independant" TCO studies, because at least they try to hide their bias.
    • How about doing a review from the perspective of someone who has never used a computer before - then lets see which one is easier to use (hint: the answer will be Windows XP by a massive margin).

      No. I set up Linux workstations in a company where here are often novice users. They have no difficulty using Linux. Why should they? A modern Linux desktop and office applications work in pretty much the same way as a Windows desktop - apart from the lack of regular virus warnings and the reduced ability to pla
    • Re:Flawed. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by WhiteWolf666 (145211) <sherwin@amiran . u s> on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:19AM (#14426617) Homepage Journal
      How about doing a review from the perspective of someone who has never used a computer before - then lets see which one is easier to use (hint: the answer will be Windows XP by a massive margin).

      Does this include the install process, or are you comparing pre-installed XP versus DIY Linux?

      If a novice was forced to install both, I'd bet $100 that they'd get Linux installed properly first. A Linux install comes with most necessary drivers/software that you'll need. A novice Windows user would _never_ find the drivers needed for even an OEM system, like a Sony or HP, where all the drivers are centralized on one site, let alone searching out the drivers from each manufacturer. Linux installs are much easier than XP installs.

      Usage? Are you talking about Gentoo versus XP? I'd suggest pre-installed SuSE versus pre-installed XP.

      SuSE? Comes with manuals, both electronic and dead tree.
      SuSE? Comes with all productivie software, documented in the manuals! Need to write a text document? Look up "word processing" in the SuSE manual. It'll tell you what app to use, show screenshots of the app, and give you a basic rundown of its usage, with pointers to a section in the electronic help system that will give you indepth support and tutorials, as well as e-mail/phone support.

      What will XP do if you look up "Word Processing" in that 15 page piece of shit 'starter guide' it comes with?

      The only place that XP is at all easier is finding software for it. Linux software is easier to install (RPM are very convienient, klik:// is even easier, and the GUI package managers are drop dead easy, especially Mandriva's URPMI GUI and SuSE's YaST GUI), and easier to remove. Linux systems require no habitual maintenance. You don't have to worry about anti-virus or anti-spyware, and even if you did worry about it, you could simply install the anti-virus software that comes with your distribution, using the distributions own package manager. Don't believe me? SuSE's YaST has "ClamAV", as well as several other anti-virus packages included.

      If you can show me Windows software that installs as easily as this: http://amavis-ng.klik.atekon.de/ [atekon.de] , I'll be mighty impressed. And commercial vendors are picking it up, too. For example, klik://nero will install the latest version of Nero Burning Rom on your Linux system, and run it. From one file. One click install->run. No setting, no fuss, no random files draped all over your system.

      The only place linux still really lags behind is game avaliablility. Between alsa, SDL, and OpenGL, there's a pretty comprehensive gaming environment on linux, but its taking manufacturers some time to get caught up. iD and Epic are doing pretty well, and Transgaming's doing some neat things with DirectX9 Wine, but gaming on Linux just isn't all that there yet, even though I do manage to keep myself enterained.

      It disappoints me that I can't play whatever games I want, but I keep myself busy with Secondlife, EVE Online, World of Warcraft, Doom 3, the Unreal series, Civilization IV, and various other distractions.
      • Re:Flawed. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by slashname3 (739398) on Monday January 09, 2006 @10:10AM (#14426957)
        Actually there are several other application areas that cause adoption of linux to be less than it could besides the lack of games.

        To get wide spread acceptance you must provide solutions for business as well as home users.

        1. Visio replacement (dia can work but is not a complete replacement)
        2. project management software, planner is almost there but not quite yet.
        3. tax software. (a version of turbotax for linux, not the web based thing but something you control on your systems)

        Openoffice or Staroffice can replace Micosoft Office today so the majority of things in the business world are taken care of. Get replacements for a few others and companies will be able to convert large numbers of users. And just like before with Microsoft, once it is used at the office users will take it home and use it there.

        Once it is used by large numbers at home the games will come. But games are not a driving reason.
    • How about doing a review from the perspective of someone who has never used a computer before - then lets see which one is easier to use

      Someone who has never used a computer before could never be expected to install any operating system, windows or linux. Such reviews are based on installation and first impressions, the views of a totally new user doesn't mean as much because they do not yet know what to look for to perform their tasks.

      (hint: the answer will be Windows XP by a massive margin).

      A TOTALL

    • How about doing a review from the perspective of someone who has never used a computer before - then lets see which one is easier to use (hint: the answer will be Windows XP by a massive margin).


      What makes you think that? Seriously?
    • Re:Flawed. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by orasio (188021)
      My girlfriend uses Slackware 9.1, with Gnome 2.4 (old stuff, around 2001).
      She had used some Windows 98 before.
      I have an old windows 98 installation, so we can play FIFA2005 (the game doesn't run anymore, so I guess it's bye bye to that partition).
      She knows how to select Windows at boot time, and she only uses Slackware, because it just works. Mail is easy, word processing in openoffice is easy, Nautilus is real good for organizing pictures. The whole issue of downloading digital pics from the camera, and la
  • by jkrise (535370) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:46AM (#14426430) Journal
    is neither easy, nor amusing. It's the same from BSOD to BSD.
  • I must say, I am not particularly impressed by Windows XP. To be fair, it has made great strides forward in both stability and usability. Security is improving, but still has a long way to go

    How would a newbie to Windows realize great strides in both these areas? Answer me that Jack!
  • by Slashdiddly (917720) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:47AM (#14426433)
    I was typing one day, at work. Just typing, tapping the hours merrily away, and suddenly, with no warning whatsoever, my computer rebooted.

    Ellen Fleiss, is it you?
    • by Virtex (2914)
      I was typing one day, at work. Just typing, tapping the hours merrily away, and suddenly, with no warning whatsoever, my computer rebooted.

      Ellen Fleiss, is it you?


      Nonsense! If it was Ellen Feiss, it would look more like:

      I was, like, typing one day, like, at work. Just typing, tapping the hours, like, merrily away, and like suddenly, with no warning whatsoever, my computer, like, rebooted.
  • Audience? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ilitirit (873234) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:48AM (#14426439)
    Who is the intended audience? Casual or Power-users? I doubt my Gran would be particularly interested in MBR's and partitions and what not...
  • by kalbzayn (927509) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:49AM (#14426440)
    All you have to do to switch to Windows is buy a new PC. They all come with it installed out of the box. They also come with all the software most people need either already installed or available to buy at your local Best Buy/Circuit City. I set up my non-tech parents like this over a year ago and have only had to help them twice when my dad accidentally told his firewall not to allow his browser to connect to the internet.

    The only support I've had to do to my own computer is fix the bootloader everytime Ubuntu decides to override it and I forget to back it up. Sometimes I think we spend a little too much time nit picking things and tweaking systems to get that extra percent performance increase.

    Time for some coffee.
  • by Chicane-UK (455253) <chicane-uk.ntlworld@com> on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:49AM (#14426442) Homepage
    The article covers everything from the hideous installer and it's lack of partitioning/formatting capabilities to the utter wasteland that is the Windows desktop, devoid of useful applications and everything in between.

    Someone has already mentioned the fact that you CAN partition and format drives in the installer, so thats wrong for a start.

    And what is Microsoft supposed to do about applications? If it bundled Microsoft Office in with Windows, the anti-competition people would be on their backs the day it hit the shelves. They have no choice but keep the OS relatively free of apps - too many partners they don't want to piss off and the anti-competition people just waiting with multi-million dollar fines! Look at the shit they are having to go through here in Europe with Windows Media Player for example!
    • by Decaff (42676) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:03AM (#14426522)
      And what is Microsoft supposed to do about applications? If it bundled Microsoft Office in with Windows, the anti-competition people would be on their backs the day it hit the shelves. They have no choice but keep the OS relatively free of apps - too many partners they don't want to piss off and the anti-competition people just waiting with multi-million dollar fines! Look at the shit they are having to go through here in Europe with Windows Media Player for example!

      They could do what they used to do years ago - allow the bundling of MS applications and alternatives on the same PC - perhaps as CDs. They you could chose MS Works or Corel Office or Open Office...

    • Someone has already mentioned the fact that you CAN partition and format drives in the installer, so thats wrong for a start.

      The summary is inaccurate. From the article:

      Anyone who complains about a Linux partitioner obviously hasn't tried installing Windows. Your only choice of file system is FAT32 or NTFS, and although you can create as many partitions as you like, you can only format the one partition - the partition you select for the Windows installation. Obviously, this gives you no chance to cr

    • Someone has already mentioned the fact that you CAN partition and format drives in the installer, so thats wrong for a start.

      Funnily enough, the article mentions it too!
  • by norfolkboy (235999) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:50AM (#14426445)
    "devoid of useful applications"

    You are moaning that Windows is by default "devoid of useful applications ".

    Of course it is! Remember the fiasco any time Microsoft try bundling anything useful with Windows? It ends up in an anti-trust trial! Of COURSE Microsoft aren't going to bundle anything useful with Windows any more.

    I thoguht that was what a Linux user would want? Choice of their own applications, not MS's choice.
    • "Of course it is! Remember the fiasco any time Microsoft try bundling anything useful with Windows? It ends up in an anti-trust trial! Of COURSE Microsoft aren't going to bundle anything useful with Windows any more." Hmmm... here's a list of 'applications' MS could've bundled if it really wantd to improve the OS: 1. A simple nice way to take a 'working' backup of a 'working' system - specially useful considering how often Windows gets hosed. 2. Remove the hideous beast called 'registry'. 3. Remove the Ac
      • 3. Remove the ActiveX control thingy

        Why in GODs name would you want to get rid of ActiveX? Do you even know what it is? It has to be one of the greatest things in component reuse in a long time. It's unsecured inclusion into webpages is unfortunate, but not at all its only use.
    • by m50d (797211) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:04AM (#14426528) Homepage Journal
      No, every time MS tries to bundle something of their own, and not include competitors, then we have an anti-trust trial. If MS bundled IE, Netscape and Opera with their OS, equivalent to what most linux distros do, there would be no problems. If they bundled WMP, realplayer and winamp - again equivalent to your typical linux distro - there would be no problems. It's when they try and give you just their product that the problems arise.
      • And just imagine how user-friendly that would be. The reviewer would be so very pleased.
      • by Politburo (640618) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:27AM (#14426681)
        This is really a silly idea. Not just because of the general idea, but because of the practicalities. If you bundle (let's say) Real, QT and Winamp.. Where's the line? Every shmuck who's written a media player is going to want it bundled. So do you have to include JoeMedia also? What about when you have too many apps bundled and want to take a few out? Those vendors are going to howl to no end. What about quality? What if Real delivers a buggy adware piece of shit to be bundled?

        It's never 'equivalent to what Linux does' because there is no Linux corporation that is trying to have everyone use their browser, media player, etc.
      • You'd actually like to have three different office suites, three different media players, three different browsers, and three different email clients installed from the word "go"? Do you work for Dell or something?
        • You'd actually like to have three different office suites, three different media players, three different browsers, and three different email clients installed from the word "go"? Do you work for Dell or something?

          Who says they have to be installed? They could be provided as install CDs. This is the way things were done years ago, before MS got too powerful.
    • by sjames (1099) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:07AM (#14426555) Homepage

      Remember the fiasco any time Microsoft try bundling anything useful with Windows? It ends up in an anti-trust trial!

      That's because MS doesn't just bundle. They bundle, then weld it to the OS, encase it in lucite so you can't get at it, and surround it with landmines to keep all but the most determined de-installer away.

      I like having more apps than I could ever need included in a Linux distro. However, I would object strenuously Xorg and a window manager was fused into the kernel and made intrinsically dependant on firefox. That's the key difference. Any componant of any Linux distro can be replaced at will. When available, the distro will include several alternatives for the same basic functionality.

  • XP is a bit older (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MancunianMaskMan (701642) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:51AM (#14426455)
    I had a similar experience, and it cost me days to install XP on a new computer wher Ubuntu installed cleanly. That was about 6 months ago, and the Ubuntu disks had been fresh from my letterbox (fee & all!) whereas my "spare" copy of XP was already a few moons old. So maybe that's why it stymed an old geek like me about SATA drives. Still haven't got Internet going on this "XP" thing, since it can't find network card drivers (not sure I want to). Maybe the M$ release cycle is just uselessly slow for today's hardware market?
  • by diegocgteleline.es (653730) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:58AM (#14426487)
    To start with, you've to install tons of apps that the operative systems don't includes itself. And due to that stupid microsoft rule that existed for years ("installer must be executables delivered by 3rd party apps") I've no way to automate the download and installation of those (yes, I know about msi, I also know MSIs can be slipped in the installation CD. I still find no way of installing AND automatic its update like apt-get update & upgrade does. And LOTS of installers are not using MSI still. Shame on you microsoft, for forcing people to create docens of different, incompatible, buggy, installers)

  • article moderation (Score:3, Insightful)

    by naddington (852722) on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:58AM (#14426489)
    I mod this article -1 Troll.
  • by jellomizer (103300) * on Monday January 09, 2006 @08:58AM (#14426493)
    Before it goes to far out of hand, where the slashdot hidden windows expert points out workarounds for his problems. This is how people write about Linux in Windows Rags. They go by their first impression and give there ratings from a 1 Day Point of View. When you move to a dramatically different system Windows, Mac, Linux/Unix, VMS... You find that things are not easy anymore. You they are no longer logically laid out Nothing works anymore and all your comfort apps are no longer there. You need time to think like the designers of the os, knowing the ls is short for list, or Dir sands for directory, or My Computer allows you view your mounted network drives. If you know only windows Other OS's feel weird and wrong the same if you know only an other OS. I say we should stop with these rags from peoples first impression and go with a better one showing the differences and explaining their strong and week points and not give judgement of what is better.
    • I think you're completely right, but I also think that the whole point of an article like this is to point out how silly articles that rag on Linux after only having used it for a short period of time are. Irony is your friend.
       
  • "Once again, you have to download the binaries and install manually, by double-clicking on the install file"

    Call me old fashioned, call me Mr-I-Want-To-Avoid-Trojans, but I don't
    actually like systems that download binaries AND run them without
    prompting you. When MS does something like this everyone jumps up and
    down but this guy seems to think it would be a good thing for Linux to
    exhibit this sort of behaviour.

    Err , no, it isn't.
    • Call me old fashioned, call me Mr-I-Want-To-Avoid-Trojans, but I don't actually like systems that download binaries AND run them without prompting you.

      Hehe... You *really* shouldn't use Windows, then. Between ActiveX controls, security holes like the WMF fiasco, Word macros, etc., Windows runs random code more often than any other OS.

      When MS does something like this everyone jumps up and down but this guy seems to think it would be a good thing for Linux to exhibit this sort of behaviour.

      No, he do

      • "Hehe... You *really* shouldn't use Windows, then."

        I don't. You think running linux protects you if you run AnyOldBinary
        off the net without checking it first? It can still wipe your home
        directory if nothing else.

        "What he wants is something like apt-get that allows you to easily pick an app you want to have installed, then let the tools download, install and configure it for you automatically in a single step"

        When I've used apt-get its been more trouble than its worth. Give me
        a .tgz any day.
  • Firefox? (Score:3, Funny)

    by Exitar (809068) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:02AM (#14426516)
    "Whenever I launched Firefox the program would run, but I couldn't type anything into the address bar. The menus were all frozen, too."

    Are you saying that no XP user can use Firefox?!?!?
    Well, probably I'm writing this post only in my imagination...
  • Of course it's hard (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Jarlsberg (643324) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:05AM (#14426532) Journal
    Of course it's hard to switch operating systems if you've been using one type of OS for a long time and are switching to something completely different.

    I remember struggling with the inadequacies of Windows when I had to switch to that OS after Amiga went bust. It was hard and extremely annoying, but eventually I knew enough to administrate both Windows 95 and the Windows servers in the business I worked for then.

    I also found Linux hopeless to use and work with the first months after I installed it, but again, business dictated I learn it, so I did. I like Linux more than I like Windows, but it's apples and oranges, really.

  • by squoozer (730327) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:10AM (#14426578)

    The section about it being devoid of useful applications makes my blood boil. Windows is an operating system which allows you to run applications. It is not necessarly something that has to come shipped with a million and one applications. Perhaps we have become complacent because every Linux distro comes shipped with a ton of applications. It would be simple enough to make a Linux distribution that has a similar number of default installed applications as Windows.

    The other problem with this statement is the way everyone cries foul when Microsoft default installs an app with Windows and then complains that a Windows default install doesn't have any applications. Make up your mind! You can't have it both ways.

    • by just_another_sean (919159) on Monday January 09, 2006 @12:07PM (#14427780) Homepage Journal
      The other problem with this statement is the way everyone cries foul when Microsoft default installs an app with Windows

      sigh... As as been said here and many times before; it's not that Windows *ships* with these applications or even that they are *installed*. It's that you can't (easily) *remove* them in favor of something else.

      If I could a) easily install Windows and choose not to install IE, OE and WMP or b) easily remove these from an already installed PC then I would not care a bit about there existence.

      Despite how much I prefer Firefox and WinAmp, IE and WMP are still lurking around on my machine becasue it is a total PITA to remove them.
  • You guys seem to be devoid of a sense of humor. You like to dish it out, but you can't take it. Are you so bitter because you are slaves? Inquiring minds want to know.
  • XP was released a good couple of years ago; of course modern Linux distros have prettier installs, they've had that time to improve them. I remember installing Slackware 3 from floppies, or the debian install I did about 5 years ago; completely text-based. I expect that Vista's installer will be rather prettier and more user-friendly than XP's one.

    But so what? 90%+ of users will never see it. They buy their PC from big ODMs like Dell or Compaq and Windows comes preinstalled. If for whatever reason they need

  • When doing anything like this or ANY task you must always "empty your cup".

    http://home.inreach.com/golanty/emptycup.htm [inreach.com]

    Otherwise like this person you will not learn anything.
  • by fionbio (799217) on Monday January 09, 2006 @09:36AM (#14426727)

    Making Windows Usable for Old Linux Farts [weitz.de]

    Still shows that making Windows workable is rather hard task.

  • I have been recently using Suse 9.3 for about a month consistently, and when I needed to go back to Windows, I had great problems:

    1) no virtual desktops. Virtual desktops play an important role in good productivity.

    2) no modern C++ compiler. I have VC++ 6.0, but I couldn't port my code from gcc over to msvc.

    3) no decent command line. Some things are much easier to do in the command line; for example, searching for files, then selecting some of them due to search criteria, then zipping and sending them to a
  • by l33tlamer (916010) on Monday January 09, 2006 @10:10AM (#14426963)
    Switching to Windows: Intended for the average computer user:
    1) Get a blank Hard Disk or create a new partition. Use partition magic or get a friend to do it
    2) Boot the windows CD and install
    3) Install firewall software
    4) Get updates from Microsoft or a friend
    5) Install other programs

    Its not that hard. I run a tri-boot system at home, with Windows-Work, Windows-Gaming and Linux. If I had to switch over from Windows to Linux, the main issues is not just the changes in interface, configuration style (init files etc), but finding replacement programs for things I am using under Windows. Like all my games, EndNote, Wakan/KanjiQuick(Japanese Writing), RatDVD and CDisplay for my manga viewing. Sure, there are similar tools available under Linux, but some features are missing, especially for rare programs like CDisplay. One can see that this reverse situation is arguably worst than going from Linux --> Windows. Sure, you may have to pay some money to get the software you need, but, at least they are available.

    It all comes down to a popular OS always having more variety of software, paid or open source, being developed for it. Personally, I think most computer users will end up dual-booting Windows (Vista) and Linux as time goes by, unless emulation becomes easy enough (for the average PC user) and fast enough to be a viable option.

    Now, let me go play som WoW, followed by a reboot to do some programming in Visual C then another reboot to start up my FTP server under Linux T_T
    • My experience (not that it is typical, I would *hope* it isn't):

      1 - I want to make a PVR (personal video recorder). Aquire the following components:
      (A) AMD 1700+ mainboard, 2 PCI slots, 1 AGP slot (B) NVIDIA 5200 graphics card with s-video out, (C) Mercury TV tuner (D) 256MB RAM (E) Memorex DVD burner.

      Note: Choice of components is for price. Noted that mainboard documentation states that WINDOWS XP is needed for "USB 2.0 Function". Borrow a copy of WINDOWS XP for initial installation (going to spring the $1
  • by isolationism (782170) on Monday January 09, 2006 @10:52AM (#14427243) Homepage
    I have a friend's elderly 3U server here -- The goods inside are probably about 5 years old (and it's all desktop-class hardware, not server hardware -- he was just sick of having boxes kicking around the floor and bought a small half-height rack and a couple 3U boxes and consolidated his footprint).

    Long story short, I've been running Gentoo on it since it showed up at the house some time ago. Now, there was some drive weirdness -- I think the boot drive was actually hdd with another drive present but unused on hdc, and the CDROM was on hdb with hda empty (??) but the point is, Gentoo installed and ran just dandy.

    For work reasons I now need to install Windows 2000 on the box and I've now rebooted half a dozen times, reformatting drives all over the place and still haven't managed to get the damn thing to boot. Why? Well, it looks like the BIOS is toast because it keeps reporting different sizes for hda (I've changed the cables to where they should be) every time I boot, and -- not surprisingly -- the drive is just totally useless to boot from. Windows won't install unless it can write an MBR to the drive, it seems.

    So -- even though I know the hardware isn't working quite right, at least Linux could work with (or, more to the point, around) the problem whereas Windows just pulls up a blank. Nothing I can do about it, either -- I've tried all the configurations that were worth trying. Next, it's time to try using a separate PATA controller card and spend another hour or so to see if Windows likes that any better ...

  • by Spy der Mann (805235) <spydermann.slashdotNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday January 09, 2006 @12:38PM (#14428092) Homepage Journal
    Why C:\Program Files, dammit? Why can't I choose it to be D:\Program files, or maybe just D:\PROGRAMS ? It requires a registry search and replace to move my program files to the partition of my choice.

    Again, this is a problem not of simplicity, but of Microsoft taking the decisions for you.
  • by voxel (70407) on Monday January 09, 2006 @01:57PM (#14428904)
    This guy is full of it.

    I can do the EXACT same thing with LINUX. I can install it on some system and have all kinds of problems, simply because I don't know what I am doing.

    The fact of the matter is, BOTH operating systems are way to technically difficult to install. You have to "know" your environment the second even ONE little thing goes wrong, or else all hell breaks loose. You know how long it took me to find the damn "lspci" command? Sheesh, I was looking for an hour. I didn't even KNOW if Linux had this ability, after I realized it MIGHT, then I had to find the thing. At least with windows you can graphically navigate to the most obvious place.. "Control Panel"... makes sense.. "System", yeah!, "hardware" Oh yeah!!, "Devices" RIGHT ON!. Linux = ... Uhhh ... pci[enter] no... fuck it. Google where are you.

    I've installed Windows on at least two dozen machines, sure sometimes there is a problem, but nothing like this guy is talking about.

    There are some basic ideas and steps you need to know to fix "drivers" and such, once you know them its a snap. The same goes for linux.

    My point is Windows is NOT more difficult or screwed up than linux, and vice versa. They are both pretty horrible, but personally I give WINDOWS the hands down on being slightly less horrible as far as install-experience.

    - Voxel

    P.S. If the guy had been using the latest version of Windows XP (Service Pack 2 Disk), then his 200 gigabyte drive would of detected fine. When you use a linux distro, you do use the latest version don't you?

Arithmetic is being able to count up to twenty without taking off your shoes. -- Mickey Mouse

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