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Josh-D. S. Davis

Xaminmo / Omnimax / Max Omni / Mad Scientist / Midnight Shadow / Radiation Master

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Computer foo
Josh 201604 KWP
* Goodbye Windows 7 64-bit
* Windows 2003 won't install on my laptop
* Windows 2008 eats as much memory as Windows 7
* XP + Lenovo = 3G limit, which I'll begrudgingly take
* 320G Laptop drive DOES work - it's my carrier's power bus wearing out.
* I've set my keyboard to give me ñ and others easily, but it eats spaces after " characters. :(

I gave up on Windows 7 64-bit. It was having device issues (memory key wouldn't show up, wouldn't keep drive letters between plug-ins, etc) and even though it allowed me to use the extra gig of memory, it used all of that extra, even if I turned off Aero and other "fun" stuff.

The look and feel took a bit of getting used to. It was OK, but it's all sizzle and no meat. Hotkeys went away for many daily functions, and the start menu could never really go into "classic" mode.

Managing the start menu required active input, and copying links into the preferences by hand was very cumbersome. It's a link to what you drag in, even if you drag in a link. So you can't copy something out, then drag it in and remove the desktop copy. Also, "folders" are on the bottom in the start menu rather than the top, which is a PITA for me.

There were lots of places where they'd eat a 4 pixel bar, or otherwise chew up screen real estate that I wanted for other things but which I couldn't really get rid of. I *did* like the media handling though. Tile mode was a cross between thumbnails and details. You can't turn off media mode for a directory though, so a pile of RPMs (Redhat Packages) was shown as Real Media and I couldn't see file sizes, or any useful info.

Lots of little things like that. "We have this great feature for you, but we're going to fuck you in the ass while we give it to you, just so you know we're in charge. Keep buying, BITCH."

I don't even like the curvy, power eating styles of XP. I mean, honestly, the only reason I'm on XP and not 2000 is because of device support and some graphics/sound acceleration issues on 2000.

I thought Windows Server 2003 x-32 would allow me to use my 4G of ram through PAE plus support for up to 32G.

No, sorry. Windows Server doesn't support booting from or even looking for disks on my system, even if I use a driver disk for it. Yes, I found a floppy and a USB floppy drive, and it even found the drivers.

What about Server 2008? Well, it's built on Vista/Windows 7 structure too. As such, instead of a minimum 128M memory, it's a minimum 512M memory. Recommended moves from 256M up to 2-4G.

So, I'm back to XP, factory load and stuck with the 4th gig of ram chewed up by device memory maps and such. THANKS LENOVO! FUCK YOU TOO! DELL DOES IT BETTER! (I get 3.5G in XP32 on a Dell with NVIDIA).

On a lighter side, my 320G disk that was "failing" even after replacement was failing because it requires slightly more power than my ultrabay disk adapter can provide. I looked inside, and some sort of sata chip in there. There's no big power bus, so I'm assuming it's still limited to roughly 1/2 amp and it would hang on spin-up.

That explains why it would not show up on other laptops and other OSes, but did show up in a powered USB bay, and works in the primary drive slot in my laptop.

So, it's become my boot drive, since it's faster. It'll chew up battery a little faster, but I rarely have issues with that.

This is good because the "replacement" I ordered with Saturday delivery from Amazon never came. I got an email stating oops, sorry. "We forgot to ship it even though you ordered it many hours before the cut-off. We'll refund your shipping and ship it ground for free on Monday."

Also, I've switched back to US - International for my keyboard type. This gives me all sorts of goodies like ¡²³¤€¼½¾‘’¥×äåé®þüúíóö«»¬áßðø¶´æ©ñµç¿ direct from the keyboard; however, " symbols expect a second character and will eat my space or whatever I type after it. Not sure if I like that. We'll see.
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(Deleted comment)
Well, MS *does* offer 64-bit.

The problem is that many OEMs and vendors do not. There's no real reason to go 64-bit except in a datacenter with more than say 64G or 128G of RAM on one OS image.

It's all about PAE. PAE is a 36-bit memory addressing model provided by Intel and compatible 32-bit chips since around the Pentium II. This allows 64-128G of memory to be addressed, with limits still being 2-4G per heap. Not a big deal though. Most jumbo programs use shared memory for data storage, and that's addressed sort of like a storage device rather than runnable heap.

Linux does PAE really well. The bigmem kernels support 64G in 32-bit mode.

Windows CAN support PAE well. Windows Server 2003 32-bit supports 8G standard, 32G enterprise, and 128G datacenter. Windows XP SP2 and Windows Server 2003 are the same thing, unfortunately, they limit PAE to exactly a 4G window on XP to ensure it doesn't compete with their server products.

As such, even with PAE enabled, XP is limited to 4G total. Device access starts at the top and works down. Mapping is handled by the memory controller which is part silicon and part firmware. Dell does it nicely. I get 3.5G usable in XP out of 4G..

But Lenovo's systems give me 3.0G. They start mapping at the 3G boundary and don't remap any RAM around it.

Linux, well, I get 4G out of 4G no matter what system.

Lots of people mock those who won't go 64-bit. Well, there are lots of things that run on 32-bit and not as many that run on 64-bit. Right now, my options for 64-bit are Windows XP 64bit, but by licensing, that still only supports 8G. Fine for now though.

Because I want to be able to sync my phone, and have drivers that came out of beta more than 6 months ago, I'm opting for a 32-bit OS.

I would have gone with Server 2003 but it won't install my laptop due to refusal to see drives on my SATA controller, even when using the proper F6 diskette.

Windows 7 is Vista 2.0. It's like trying to use Millennium Edition v2.0.

Linux is too big of a shift, but it's looking bright on my horizon.

Truly, I have no REAL reason to go 64-bit. It doesn't buy me performance enhancements or anything OTHER than additional memory access, and that's ONLY because of license enforcement within MS operating systems.

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