Completely disagree. I worked over a decade in the valley, and have now worked for several years in academia. The amount of bureaucratic nonsense I have to deal with now is a few orders of magnitude smaller than what went on in the corporate world. My first six months in academia were more productive than my last six years in the private sector.
Academia does not have the cash required to sustain a large bureaucracy. It's simply not there. Technologies that, in the corporate world, would be managed by a team of thirty people, in academia are managed by one person, because that's all they can afford. Things that took months, or years, now take hours, or days. It could not be more starkly different.
But just how many politicians have accepted money from Comcast's political arm? In the case of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which held the first congressional hearing on the Comcast/TWC merger yesterday, the answer is all of them."
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Well, as I'm a Mac person these days, I've swapped out those sorts of issues for the ones that Apple produce.
...yeah, if I've gotten a slipstreamed install disc with SP3 on it, I could have saved myself a lot of time when I did the same experiment. *shrug*
Out of interest, which version of IE did it have after install completed? I see you were prompted to upgrade to IE8, but my memory is hazy on whether IE7 was ever included on later XP install discs.
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But XP? Not so simple. XP has lower system requirements, it works well on systems that are dog slow under 7. It's STILL BEING SOLD for that very reason, and the machines that ship with it will generally not work with other versions, either from lack of resources, lack of drivers, or both.
I'm aware you can still get XP discs second-hand or ex-stock here in the UK - Amazon lists several versions, although some look suspiciously like they may be OEM versions that are tied to specific brand/model PCs. I'm not aware of any PC maker here in the UK offering an XP options, though - maybe Windows 7, for business systems and workstations.
Ultimately I will probably just put Slackware on the machine that's running XP now but if ReactOS were a little more mature I might use it instead.
I recently wiped my old (2003 vintage) laptop, which originally came with XP, and installed Linux Mint - considering the machine's specs, it works fairly well.
I've read about ReactOS, but given the slow pace of progress I regard it as curiosity rather than a viable alternative.
Seriously. I remember trying out the preview version on my then-XP-running PC back in 2009, and being blown away by a) how much easier it was to install and get going, b) how well it ran all my existing software, c) how it let me finally use all of the memory installed in my machine, d) how much better it was than Vista. I pre-ordered a copy soon after, and the rest is history. Now, on my Mac, I have my Windows 7 VM for running various applications I still use.
Installing Windows XP today is not nearly as fun as you might think, particularly if you've got a pre-SP2 copy. When I tried it, I had to manually install some patches just to get Windows Update working, then some more before I could install IE8, and some more before I could install MSE. And then all the patches to bring the whole lot up-to-date - that took hours and hours to finish. I'd only recommend trying it if you're installing onto a machine that you don't actually need to use for a good while.
As for the 'but it's tried and tested" argument for hanging onto XP, I would point to the number of flaws that are still being uncovered in the Windows codebase, many of which are also in XP. Yes, you can mitigate against some by hardening your system, running only as a standard user, etc. - but for most current XP installs that will probably mean extra aggravation caused by third-party software written back in the Bad Old Days that expects to run with full admin privileges.
The only excuse for continuing with XP, to my mind, other than sheer obstinacy, is where you've got systems that absolutely, positively require XP running on physical hardware - specialised hardware or software that won't work via a VM because they need direct access through physical ports. Such systems should be segregated from local networks and the Internet as much as possible.
I simply don't know what to say.
Chromecast doesn't do enough to add value. The only thing it really brings to the table is the novel control scheme. Yes, it's a cheap streamer that I can control with a $75 tablet or retired smartphone, but I'll bet I can find a price-competitive BluRay player that can do both those things and still play discs AND use a proper ethernet connection.
A Pivos Xios running Linux firmware with XBMC might be a decent fit. It can't keep up well at high bit rates, but the one I have can and and does play 1080p content including AC3 and DTS.
This review read like an Apple user looking for things to whine about. I don't recall seeing anywhere in the verbiage of press over the last two days any promise from Amazon that it would be some universal media-seeking device.
That being said, like any respectable media streamer these days, it DOES support Plex access, which should be your go-to tool for local content access. If it's on the same LAN with a client, you can also connect to it via DLNA and thereby use it with pretty much set top box smart enough to connect to the internet.
The single best STB I've ever found in terms of capability is the LG Smart TV Upgrader, which LG sold for about two months back in 2009 or so. It supports SMB, AFP and NFS, but it also has support for Netflix, Youtube, Hulu Plus and Amazon. It can play h.264, open VideoTS folders and it doesn't have a problem with AC3 or DTS audio. Unfortunately, it's slow as hell and the UI is ugly. I'm not entirely sure if LG is still releasing firmware updates for them but they're a pretty good alternative to a fully functional HTPC.
The problem with systemd has been the steamroller attitude of its developers and advocates. They seem to want systemd to be the one true init system, accept no substitutes. RedHat, Fedora, Debian, Ubuntu, and Arch have all gone to systemd, and I'm not sure what other distros have as well. As far as I know Slackware, Gentoo, and Funtoo are the only distros that haven't, though Gentoo offers it.
I don't mind if systemd is an option. But I feel that there is some bad design in there, and would rather not use it myself. The problem comes when I can't avoid doing so.
It's only a good idea sticking all of that in PID1 until there's a problem. When PID1 crashes, so does your box. The more stuff in PID1, the more likely there is to be a bug somewhere in there. Now stuffing all of that in PID2, and having PID1 take care of itself and restarting PID2 might be a different story.