Windows

Nov. 6th, 2008 01:57 pm
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
For once, I'm gonna stop bitching about my Mac, and take a really stupid thing in Windows to task.

I am having issues with IntelliJ, so I scanned my user directory for anything named intellij. It pulled up a dir in my temp dir. I discovered that in my temp dir are files older than 6 months, and the sum total of all the files is over 8GB!!!!

Not very temporary is it if it never gets deleted.
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
So I've seen this MS add where MS bring people in and tell them they are looking at the new Windows OS, Windows Mohave, and people are shown liking it, and are shocked when they are told that it's actually Vista.

Of course what it neglects to mention is that these people's computers will all suddenly need to be upgraded to 4-8 times the RAM they have at the moment in order to run Vista, which is pretty much as much RAM as a 32bit computer without PAE can support.

I have three virtual machines on my Mac running Windows XP. They get along fine in 386MB of RAM. My first Vista based computer came with 1GB. Illustrator crapped out giving me not enough memory errors, and everything was sluggish. I upgraded to 2GB, and STILL had problems. I put 4GB in, and finally vista ran acceptably.

From this I deduce that Microsoft's next operating system will largely be sold in 64 bit editions so that it can have enough memory to be performant.
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
Today my latest NewEgg order came. Nothing big, nothing fancy, just some RAM for my iMac. I found that IntelliJ, whilst an awesome IDE regularly consumes 600MB resident memory. Add to that 400MB for my Virtual Machine running Windows XP for testing, iTunes, Firefox eating around 600MB and Terminal that for some unknown reason has chewed through 120MB, not to mention mail, photoshop/illustrator and bridge, and my 2048MB was getting very strained. Also given that I had not rebooted in awhile apparently had a lot to do with it, but still, thats a high demand environment. I decided to upgarde my memory to 4Gig. Memory is cheap right now, and even Apple has instructions on their website on how to do it. There is a cute little slot at the bottom edge of the machine that holds the RAM. The only down-side is that it's only two slots of SODIMM RAM, which means only 4GB. If I could have I would have put in 8.
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
Today Windows Vista told me that it wanted to install SP1. I was nervous. I've heard lots of bad things about SP1. I thought to myself - well - this is a new machine, I haven't installed everything yet (I am considering downgrading to XP), and it has a recovery partition, and a system restore point. Yesterday my bluetooth headset arrived, and I discovered quite quickly that it doesn't work on my current system, so I was hoping that SP1 might fix that. I'd also heard that SP1 had some good fixes for Network Connectivity, which is good because it took my network backup agent four weeks to backup my system, and even then it wasn't fully done.

I started the download, and apparently so had many other people as it came down fairly slowly. Once it was down it asked me to reboot my machine of course. I dutifully complied, and before it finished shutting down it installed the update. I felt like I was holding my breath as my computer restarted.

It came up. No problems.

I re-inserted my bluetooth PCMCIA card and it found it fine, and then it found my headset, and it said searching for drivers. I thought it was going to fail as it was taking some time, and normally that's not a good sign, but it found them. I fired up skype and sure enough, my headset was in the options. I called the test line and it worked! Fantastic.

I also checked the connectivity to my backup service (well - one of them) and it was perfect. Fast and responsive, so unlike before.

So far for SP1, I give a big thumbs up!
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
So - I'm messing around on my machine, and I decide to shut a few things down so that I can tidy up my desktop a bit. I start shutting things down and my HD goes nuts as usual. I finally got tired of waiting for apps to shut down so I opened up Windows Resource Monitor and took a shufti at Disk activity. Well for staters we have pagefile.sys going great guns for a bit, then we have SearchIndexer.exe sucking my HD hard. pagefile.sys on a machine with 2GB of RAM. Perhaps this says something about Windows Vista. I remember not all that many years ago having a 486 with 16MB of RAM runing Enlightenment on linux and just about having enough RAM to run Mozilla without swapping too much. 16MB of RAM folks. A browser, a window manager that has fancy effects, and an OS with terminals and networking and stuff. I can't run more than two apps at once on a machine with 2GB of RAM without swapping, what gives?

Then there is the matter of SearchIndexer. I have noticed ever since I got my machine that whenever I save and shut down a bunch of apps, the HD goes nuts, and doing a little research, it seems that I am not the only person who has a major issue with SearchIndexer.exe. In earlier version of Vista it just plain crashed in non US locales. Later it would randomly break and cause a machine to thrash an HD endlessly and stop the user from moving or deleting files. It's supposed to active only when there are idle cycles on the machine. Hmm.... not really working is it?
Fortunately with a bit of digging, I found out how to turn this sucker off. You can go to windows services and shutdown windows search. Hooray! I will report if my machine is snappier or not.

Let me see how many Gigs of Word Docs and emails I have to index.... Well, I use gmail, so no email. And I have maybe a couple of hundred word docs, that are all well organized into files by client and sensibly names so I can find them easily. How quick can an OS grep through a couple of hundred Megs, pretty quick really considering an HD can do at least 50MB/sec read and with a half decent 7200RPM drive it's more like 70MB/sec. I think I can wait 4 seconds for a search to return if I ever actually do one, which in the last sixth months, I can't remember a single instance of needed to search my docs. Big PDFs? I bet they are mostly images and graphics. Text is small, and in a PDF it's zipped too, so searching over it requires less IO and more CPU, which is good because IO is slow and CPU is fast.

Windows Search - Useless for me, and I bet many others. Most of my FS is taken up by applications, photoshop files, illustrator files, games, videos and MP3s. Most of which are not even slightly searchable with current technology.
armtuk: Cheetah (Default)
Maybe this is just a vista thing, I will prefix this whole rant by saying that this is on my Shiny new Vista powered laptop.

I am at work. I have a local area connection to my laptop to a swishy Gig-E switch that does my backups and everything. There is also some asshole with a public unsecured wireless network in the building. For some reason, I cannot convince windows to drop that network and just use my local area connection. It insists on defaulting to the wireless connection. I tell windows to disconnect me from that wireless network, and it just comes right back.

Grr...

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