Reinstalling mediocrity…

Well, after weeks of dealing with instability (relative instability, this is XP after all, and not 95/98, read as: I was forced to reboot twice a week instead of once), and utterly bizzare behavior (why shouldn’t it take 15 minutes for the shutdown dialog box to come up? why shouldn’t trying to access folder properties cause explorer to lock up?), I finally gathered the tuits and formatted the windows partition, laying down the fresh glossy sheen of a fresh install of XP. Snappy as hell. There are some files I forgot to backup, but hey, they weren’t that important.

Reinstalling Windows is like eating fast food takeout. When you first do it, it’s a revelation, it’s hot and fast and there’s a little bit of mess but think of how much easier it was than the alternative. From then, it’s kind of a compulsion. Computer is acting slightly strange, wonder if it’s time to reinstall again? This seems slower than it was two weeks ago, wonder if it’s time to reinstall again…

I then spent some time installing drivers for my wireless card, then downloading drivers for my motherboard, then downloading drivers for the sound card, then downloading drivers for the video card, then copying back over my utilities directory and pictures and then got Live Writer installed and then got Foxit installed and then got Keepass installed and then got Tweakui installed and Gcaldaemon and Rainlendar and notepad++ and 7-zip and Launchy and Avast and that’s when it hit me.

I’ve reached the end of my patience. Reinstalling Windows is repulsive.

 The whole pantheon of arcane rights and rituals to get Windows back into fighting shape is laborious and horrible and idiotic.

It took me two hours to get my frickin’ onboard sound drivers. The manufacturer throttled the downloads at around 20k/s. The only alternative I found was throttled at 30k/s. They would both spontaneously reset my connection and didn’t support resume. Seriously guys.

Installing Gcaldaemon is a fucking exercise in picking nits blindfolded. The whole process is idiotic and repetitive. If it weren’t for Fargo spending several days building a nice, neat install program for it, I’m not sure I’d have gone to the trouble of using it.

I’m still missing dozens of critical programs, frameworks, video codecs, Firefox add ons (being able to easily back these up would be a godsend you guys), tweaks and settings that will make this install viable in the long run.

Honestly, the only thing I _am_ satisfied with at this point is Foxmarks and Gmail, which kept the important parts of my online life in check. Everything else has been underwhelming.

2 thoughts on “Reinstalling mediocrity…

  1. I use FFBE to move all Firefox shizz from machine to machine: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/2109

    By the way, has ANY piece of software made you dread updates like Firefox?! Oh great, now you’ll use *more* memory and 50% of my extensions won’t work for 3 months. Hork. I hate seeing the update dialog box.

    I’m really tired of everything in the current personal computing universe. I have a Mac now that I screw around with (ok, but I’m kinda underwhelmed. They get slow quick), and 2 rock solidly stable 2Kpro servers. Funny that the servers and my XP notebook are numbingly boring but never fuck up or frustrate me.

    I guess I’m waiting for the line of early adopters to tell me that Vista is ok to try.

  2. Ugh, Vista. So horrible. My laptop came with it pre installed. First problem was that “shutdown” DOESN’T SHUT DOWN THE COMPUTER. Second problem was that the battery life was horrible. 2.5-3 hours estimated, reality 1.5-2 tops (this was on the updated battery with all the nifty underclock features and whatnot). Third problem was that Cisco VPN didn’t work on it (which I need for work). Fourth was the whole “Do you want to allow this action? YES/NO” FOLLOWED BY a “WARNING, THIS PROGRAM IS TRYING TO CHANGE YOUR SYSTEM: ALLOW/DENY”, for damned near anything. Honest to god, three times to create folders in the start menu. Once to create it, once to rename it, once to move stuff into it. Disabling the User Control Service shit got rid of one set of warnings, but not the other. Trash trash trash trash trash.

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