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[#] Fri Dec 26 2014 08:40:37 EST from fleeb

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It's my understanding 8.1 restores that start menu as well, and doesn't cost anything.

[#] Fri Dec 26 2014 11:51:50 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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There's a $5 product called "Start 8" that puts the start menu
feature back into Winblows 8. It doesn't do anything for the apps

There's a $0 product called "Linux" that makes the computer usable again.
Installing it now. I was hoping to capture the preloaded Windows Phone for PC install and shrink it down into a VM but the included Norton Microsoft insisted that other operating systems are viruses.

[#] Fri Dec 26 2014 19:11:02 EST from vince-q <>

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Dec 26 2014 5:40am from fleeb @uncnsrd (Uncensored)

It's my understanding 8.1 restores that start menu as well, and
doesn't cost anything.

Mp[[2~[2~Nope - not in 8.1 and won't be in 8.anything.
WinBlow$ 10 is the one to watch (they're skipping "9").
Or not.

[#] Mon Dec 29 2014 03:20:53 EST from the_mgt

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Fri Dec 26 2014 08:40:37 ESTfrom fleeb @ Uncensored

It's my understanding 8.1 restores that start menu as well, and doesn't cost anything.
That's what I thought, too. What they actually did is the following:
You are able to set "Boot into Desktop mode" as the default, instead of the "Tile/Metro view". Sometimes you have to activate that manually, though.
There is now a Real(tm) Windows button on the lower left corner, which does the same thing as the windows key, previously: It takes you to the Tile view. No Real(tm) Startmenu for you, sir!
You can set it to display only a list of installed programs, sorted by alphabet (sometimes by comapany) and avoid the ugliness of the tiles. But that is the best you can do without an additional tool that brings back the old behavior.
The most horrible thing is, that they restructure the config dialogs. Some of the functions are in the old System Settings stuff, parts of the functions are hidden in the new dialogs. For example, most of the networking and wifi stuff is where it used to be. But if you want to forget a wifi network (and its password), you need to do that via the new widget that flies in from the right side of your screen. It is like linux, but far far worse.

[#] Mon Dec 29 2014 09:41:39 EST from fleeb

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Microsoft, from major version to version, shifts things around such that all the crap you carefully learned from previous versions of the operating system are tossed into the wind, and you have to learn something completely different.

So, with that in mind, I don't really think of it as such a big deal. Or, at least, no more ridiculous than what they've done every other time they've had a major shift in OS.

Everyone hated the gummy bear crap they did for XP. Everyone hated Vista for shifting everything around. Now they get to hate 8.0's shifting of everything around, oh and the fucking Metro (retro?) UI.

But, honestly, this is nothing out of the ordinary. If you elect to stick with Window, get used to it.

[#] Mon Dec 29 2014 11:51:53 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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It's particularly frustrating that they still have all these different screens that do the same thing. Control Panel, Administrative Tools, Server Manager, Computer Management, and whatever that botched abortion is that shows up when you start Windows Phone Server 2012.

On the desktop side --- after careful consideration, I have reached the conclusion that Windows 10 is an unusable piece of crap and should not be used. (Ok I haven't actually seen it yet, but I wanted to be the first to arrive at that inevitable conclusion.)

[#] Wed Dec 31 2014 14:01:03 EST from dothebart

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hm, finaly a reason to buy a microsoft phone?

obviously once a linux kernel with gui is running, you also could run android, jolla, firefox os or ubuntu phone would be an easy go...

[#] Thu Jan 01 2015 17:46:30 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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The only problem with that is, Microsoft still got paid.

[#] Fri Jan 02 2015 07:12:11 EST from dothebart

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I guess one can probably discuss whether they earned more from their android tax on a compareable device, than they earned with this...

[#] Fri Jan 02 2015 12:09:05 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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They didn't "earn" anything; they merely captured revenue from a source where they didn't earn it.

[#] Sat Jan 03 2015 08:22:37 EST from dothebart

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for shure I don't want to say they deserve this money.

I'm looking forward to samsung not paying anymore because of antitrust anciety ;-)

[#] Wed Jan 07 2015 15:42:11 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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So I did something awful this week.

Tired of dealing with my poorly performing Windows VM, I wiped my laptop and installed Windows 7 directly onto it. It was getting to be tiresome, so I swapped the host and guest roles.

Here's what I've found. This is coming from someone who hasn't run Windows as a primary desktop operating system for almost 20 years.

* In the Windows environment, you don't have to worry about whether a particular program or device is compatible. Everything "just works."
* ...until it doesn't. Linux can be a pain in the ass to get certain things working, but it *stays* working. Just a couple days in and I've already had to contend with the desktop taking several minutes to boot, with the all-Microsoft software stack misbehaving, hanging, and generally being of low quality, etc.
Why is Outlook rendering email illegibly when it's a Microsoft client talking to a Microsoft server running a Microsoft email system on supported hardware with the latest drivers?
* Linux behaves better inside a virtual machine than Windows does. This is more apparent on a desktop, where things like sound and video move cleanly down the stack and *never* screw up.

Speaking of which ... if anyone is in a similar situation, I found that VirtualBox performed *much* better when I gave it a dedicated partition on which to run the Linux, instead of using a virtual disk image file. The driver support for that is fantastic but it requires a special incantation in order to make it work. Basically you have to use their command line tool to create a virtual disk file that merely references the partitions you want. It's quite good: you can tell it to give the guest OS access to the entire disk, or only to selected partitions. In the case of a Linux guest, I gave it a 200 GB root and an 8 GB swap on partitions 3 and 4. When you do this, the guest has access to the selected partitions; it *sees* the other partitions and the MBR, but any attempt to read from them returns all zeroes, and any attempt to write to them is silently ignored.

So I installed my Linux onto /dev/sda3, telling it to write the GRUB boot loader onto /dev/sda3 instead of /dev/sda, and it boots right up. With all the correct drivers loaded, X11 in seamless mode is *fabulous*.

[#] Wed Jan 07 2015 19:06:05 EST from dothebart

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i've found vmware to desparately misbehave if you run it on btrfs.

since then i've removed btrfs from all my systems.

ext4 delivers reliable performance even with windows (xp) vms.

I don't like windows as host os, since you can't easily use two monitors in that setup.

The best way to use windows is rdesktop, and some wintendo anywhere on the net, being it a VM on a big serverbox.

Outlook is PITA in any case.

[#] Thu Jan 08 2015 23:51:12 EST from ax25

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Outlook is 'da bomb.  Literally.  It bombs out on a paltry 17,000 emails in your inbox when you gander at it via IMAP.  Not me mind you (Alpine works fine on 40K+), but customers call in with issues like that.  PST ala badly designed JET databases from the late 80s and early 90s need to die.  PST's > 1.(8-9) GB should not be a problem, but sill are.  I don't "compact" or delete anything with my setup.  Poor buggers using MS stuff with some insane limits on what they can keep or do.

Of course, size matters (even on the MTA side of things):

[#] Sat Jan 10 2015 13:36:58 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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As everyone figured out a long time ago, people still think Outlook is the "best" mail client because Exchange is really awful at serving up email to any client which dares to use open standard protocols.

[#] Sun Jan 11 2015 10:38:15 EST from the_mgt

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Small offices that use outlook and non-exchange server, but craving calendar sync, etc. are the worst. You then need to waste ours of work and shitloads of money to either get Exchange or an alternative working.

Instead of starting with some open protocol first. Luckily, one of my recent acquired clients, architects with international fame, use thunderbird and are as happy as a pig in the mud. Makes my life much easier.

The worst clients use Outlook with common mail server and POP3, even for project centered mails were multiple people use one inbox. The reason? Anxiety, that one person deletes an important email and it is lost for everyone....

[#] Mon Jan 12 2015 09:10:59 EST from fleeb

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My company is beholden to Microsoft for its e-mail solutions, which is rather a shame. I lack any clout here to get them to migrate to something sane.

[#] Thu Jan 15 2015 16:26:42 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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My average uptime has plummetted since reversing my operating systems a few weeks ago (Linux running as a VM within Windoze instead of the other way around).

You know what really grinds my gears? "Windows has installed updates and will now reboot in <countdown> unless you push the 'Postpone' button." Maximum postponement: 4 hours.

4 hours. Perfectly calculated so that when you're away from your desk having lunch, you miss the pop-up and it does an unattended reboot, destroying everything you had open. Followed by "Windows is installing update 1 of 99999999, please do not turn off or reboot your computer."

Srsly? Compared to APT, this update crap is still in the stone age.

[#] Thu Jan 15 2015 16:53:30 EST from fleeb

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I think there's a way to tell windows not to automatically handle its setup crap. Maybe.

Tap the Windows key, type 'update', choose 'Windows Update', click on 'Change Setting' in the left hand column, and under 'Important updates', change the dropdown to whatever you want (perhaps 'Never', but 'Download' might be the better option for a more controlled experience).

These steps assume you're using Windows 7. Dunno about 8.

[#] Thu Jan 15 2015 18:14:50 EST from vince-q <>

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"8" can be told to download updates but not install them.
Or - give you a list of pending updates and you then decide to download/install.
Or - just let the machine do it when it wants.

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