This Space for Rent

Every now and then I am reminded

That though Microsoft Windows may have reached the point where it sucks less than many other operating systems for a user, it is still plunging downwards into the dark abyss of being pretty damn near impossible to maintain or install without being driven into a screaming rage.

I'm installing Windows 2000 on a workstation at work, because I need to configure a fiber channel disk array for a Linux box (the choices are to use the point and drool windows program, to use some point and drool program on Linux, or to use some command line interface that uses java on Linux. Since ccd and vinum have scarred me for life [freebsd may be an excellent operating system, but those two products are pretty much classic examples of how not to do a good user interface or documentation] about command line configuration of disk arrays, I have the choice of either (a) installing r*dh*t Linux and "I'm not KDE!" or installing Windows 2000. Windows 2000 has the advantage that that's what the people upstairs in hardware engineering use, so I can take advantage of their experience in disk arrays.

Of course I have to install it. I can't do my workstation, because it's running XP (which the fiber channel configuration program will not run on -- way to effing go, IBM!) and if I blew it away and put in Windows 2000, the nazgul in IT will swoop down and leave my eviscerated body as an encouragement to the others. So I installed in on a machine of my own, which has a wad of SIS hardware in it to do ethernet, video, sound, and so on. NONE of this hardware is recognised by Windows 2000. So I'm doing the exciting chore (after the windows install took all of 40 minutes) of digging up prospective drivers, hand-carrying them to this box, and seeing if the Windows install-device-drivers software will accept them. And, to make matters even more fun, I'm rolling up all of the important Microsoft updates to their system, just in case the fiber channel configuration program goes out to the public network and retrieves a fistful of viruses.

This has taken a couple of hours so far.

I will be very happy when the stupid fiber channel configuration program (which, of course, won't run on a 16 color VGA display, thus resulting in several rounds of hunt the device driver) has set up a pair of nice 100gb partitions for people to play with, and I can then stop doing that and try to pick up on a couple of programs I was trying to do about two months ago (and have totally forgotten about.)