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Author Topic: Operating Systems....  (Read 9120 times)

CommonTater

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Operating Systems....
« on: January 02, 2012, 04:16:26 am »
The recent discussion with czerny in the addins forum, and a couple of PMs, set me to thinking about operating systems and things I used to do...  But mostly I got thinking about "Which operating system I enjoyed the most"...
 
Linux was a total cock up for me so we don't need to go there...
 
Windows 7 seems to have a lot of problems... fix one thing and something else pops up to harass.  Moreover with the growing antipathy toward freeware and shareware developers, subtly imbedded in such pain in the but stuff as UAC, Manifests, Code Signing, API complexity etc.  I'd have to say that despite it's much improved desktop Windows 7 is basically not all that great.
 
Windows 8 doesn't look a lot better... They've redone the desktop *yet again*, using an entirely different programming paradigm... and they've tossed in the App Store thing where you're going to have to spend thousands of dollars (cdn) just to your app listed, if they approve it, that is. We're talking about  computing homogenized right down to the "lowest common denominator" level -- they're imitating cellphones, for crying out loud.  So first blush on that pretty much sends me screaming into the night...
 
Going back in time; Windows XP ... Now that was a pretty decent OS... It was rock stable, fast, clean and (by comparison to Win7) it was relatively easy to program for. XP is still the operating system of choice amongst HTPC afficianados. I still have quite a few contacts using XP with no plans to upgrade anytime soon, even though they know it's abandoned by MS. 
 
Going back one step further to 2000 ... Yeah!... Rock stable, wide open, easy to configure and work with, a lot of fun to program on, nice API setup ... It's almost a crying shame it's been left in the dust by advances in technology such as SATA, HD video, HQ audio and such. 
 
Even further back to Win95, 98 and ME... well the only comment there is one I saw on a website back then where someone did a survey and discovered that 16 bit windows users were rebooting their systems an average of 15 times a DAY... what else is there to say.
 
MS-DOS... be still my fluttering heart! ... I was on Pascal back then and must have produced a couple of hundred disks of source code... but that's long dead, and I'm kinda glad we've moved on.
 
I used the same installation of Windows 2000 from 1999 to 2005 when I updated to XP, only installed that one once as well from 2005 to early 2011 when I updated to Windows 7...  Can't say the same for Win7.  I'll bet I've installed this OS 30 times this year, on my computer and on the family's various notebooks and desktops... There just always seems to be *some* issue going on.
 
So how do I rank the ones I have handy?
Best oveall ... Windows XP
Most stable ... Win2000
Not worth buying... Vista
Useable but not very stable ... Win7
 
So, I'm sitting here with a cup of coffee, typing this up, and seriously contemplating going "legacy" and stuffing a copy of XP 64bit into my system....
 
Sometimes things like this just happen, I suppose.  :D
 
« Last Edit: January 02, 2012, 04:18:01 am by CommonTater »

Offline Stefan Pendl

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2012, 12:50:49 pm »
So, I'm sitting here with a cup of coffee, typing this up, and seriously contemplating going "legacy" and stuffing a copy of XP 64bit into my system....

The XP x64 Edition has its own issues, so the best is to stay with 32-bit XP.
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Offline Bitbeisser

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2012, 07:05:01 am »
So, I'm sitting here with a cup of coffee, typing this up, and seriously contemplating going "legacy" and stuffing a copy of XP 64bit into my system....

The XP x64 Edition has its own issues, so the best is to stay with 32-bit XP.
The problem in general is this "64bit mania", that's what is causing the problems with Windows 7  and will likely increase Tater's frustration about Windows XP....

Ralf

CommonTater

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2012, 10:10:07 am »
I'm sorry... "64bit mainia"??

If we're going to have the old 64 vs 32 debate again, may I be excused :D


Offline Stefan Pendl

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2012, 12:38:46 pm »
If we're going to have the old 64 vs 32 debate again, may I be excused :D
I will follow with a pot of tee and some cookies :-X
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Stefan

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CommonTater

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2012, 01:25:14 pm »
Stephan... You got a deal!  (I love cookies... )

Offline Vortex

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2012, 08:30:02 pm »
Hi CommonTater,

I agree with your statements and vote for XP. The biggest problem with MS systems is that the registy is a very sensitive database and it's the reason of many system crashes. Personaly, I prefer using portable applications and avoid installing too many applications to keep clean the registry.
Code it... That's all...

CommonTater

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2012, 11:19:28 pm »
Hi Vortex... Can't disagree with you.  INI files were a far better system... but I guess that would have been too simple.

Win7 is using the registry more heavily than ever... and I fear it's just going to get worse.

Offline Stefan Pendl

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2012, 11:45:29 pm »
Personaly, I prefer using portable applications and avoid installing too many applications to keep clean the registry.
I would use the portable release for testing applications, but if I found one that I like, I install it.

I have found it best to have one virtual system for testing applications, you can either make a snapshot of it before the installation or define the disk as unchangeable, so it will be reverted automatically at the next start.

System restore has be worse the few times I tested it, so I don't use it at all.
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EdPellesC99

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2012, 12:05:29 am »
I started to play with Ubuntu lately.

Could boot with the live CD fine.
Immediate problem was no access to the Internet with my Verizon Aircard.
The LiveCd (and same with a live USB) was it was too slow too

Supposed solution was VirtualBox, and guesting Ubuntu within, .....except no go as according to responses in forums "I need a minimum of initial 2 Gb, allowing 1 for VirtualBox (Virtual Box installed fine, but could not guest Ubuntu, errors led them to believe it was a memory problem).

Just wanted to look at a linux flavor, but was just playing around and I did not get too far.

Also started looking at Android, .... the x86 ver of Ice Cream Sandwich ..... but it is pretty much Java.... though you can work some with C and C++.

Not very exciting.

Maybe someday Microsoft will sell the source for XP !
They half did that for China.

Maybe the equivalent of an employee owned company.   ........A mass of programmers would join and buy it !

Probably not !

Ed



CommonTater

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2012, 12:44:57 am »
I started to play with Ubuntu lately.

My oldest son is a ubuntu fan.  It's a nice looking OS but I was really surprised by the amount of time he spends "administering" it.  Seems half of his computer time is adjusting this, adding that, updating something else... and you should see the gyrations he goes through to access my LAN... it's pretty wild.
 
But he thinks it's the bees knees... 
Me... I like the convenience of windows. 
 
When I put in Win2000 I spent a fair bit of time at first, getting it all tweaked up and set to my likings.  But after about a week, it was "just use it" time, which I did for over 5 years on a single installation.  XP was pretty much the same.  Once I got it settled down to my liking I suddenly didn't have to think about the OS anymore and just did my thing with it.

Sadly, I can't say the same thing about Windows 7... I updated all our in-house computers to Win7 early last year and I'm seriously contemplating setting up an IT department in the basement to keep it all working... Seems there's always something...

Quote
Maybe someday Microsoft will sell the source for XP !

Seen this? ... http://www.reactos.org/en/index.html
 
The thing I've never understood is why a company with the combined mental horspower of Microsoft would just abandon a sound codebase and go off into the wilds with Vista then try to recover from the boondoggle with Win7 ... Smarts (apparently lacking in this case) would have suggested a thorough code review and update to the XP codebase... Lord only knows what they were thinking.
 
Windows XP (sp3) remains the OS of preference amongst the HTPC audiophiles and videophiles of my acquaintance.  They claim and I will confirm that XP 32bit produces far superior video and audio output than either Vista or Win7... *Especially* if you are running a DAC into high end audio gear like MacIntosh or Amcron... the difference is clearly audible to anyone with even moderately good hearing. One has to wonder why MS would go to a new codebase with much higher latency and jitter, especially with the growing "integration" trend between home computing and home entertainment,
 
Try this ... http://www.thesycon.de/deu/latency_check.shtml ... on both Win7 and XP... XP typically runs 12 to 17 microseconds, Win7 seldom gets under 150...
 
Now it would apear they've gone even further off the mark with Windows 8... the new ui looks a royal nuisance to do anything with and I'm not spending $500.00 per copy to make my workstation computer look like my kid's cellphone!
 
The big question seems to be... "Where to go from here?" 
 
It would seem (from my perspective) that computing has "hit the wall", at least for the moment.  Programming languages are stagnated, individual developers are being shut down by trends in the industry, innovation is almost at a standstill. Operating systems no longer concentrate on performance and stability, seeming almost entirely focused upon "Eye Candy" and are becoming more and more bloated with each new version. Hardware progress marches on, but at a greatly reduced pace compared to 10 years ago.  A lot of this stuff seems to be progress for the sake of profit... nothing really new or better, just an ever increasing spiral of stuff intended only to part us from our money.
 
So I'm thinking that unless there is a return to basics... Windows Essentials... Nothing but the core OS and it's API... these guys have pretty much painted themselves into a corner...
 
 
« Last Edit: January 06, 2012, 01:00:03 am by CommonTater »

Offline frankie

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2012, 04:03:41 pm »
My oldest son is a ubuntu fan.  It's a nice looking OS but I was really surprised by the amount of time he spends "administering" it.  Seems half of his computer time is adjusting this, adding that, updating something else... and you should see the gyrations he goes through to access my LAN... it's pretty wild.
Maybe the main pitfall of MS is the effort to make its OS's too much friendly  ;)
The risult is that the computer makes what it wants, not what you want!  ;D
Linux is probably the best OS actually available (it is the Android engine, is in phones, media centers, routers, toys, etc.), but still needs a lot of administering.
Maybe when it will become friendly as Windows will show the same problems....  ;D

EdPellesC99

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2012, 01:28:44 am »


Yes,

Quote
Seen this? ... http://www.reactos.org/en/index.html

  I saw this Reactos.org site a few years ago.  They do not seem to have gotten too far yet.


From the site:

   
Quote
(Since)....There are no plans for Windows to become released under a GPL-compatible license (at least, ReactOS team is not aware of them).

... ReactOS offers an alternative, for people who are fed up with Microsoft's policies but do not want to give up the familiar environment, architectural design, and millions of existing software applications and thousands of hardware drivers.

Please bear in mind that ReactOS 0.3.13 is still in alpha stage and is not recommended for everyday use.

  As long as you have a legal copy of XP, you will always be able to use it from within a Virtual Machine in Windows 7 or 8, so I don't know what advantage it would be to use Reactos (esp if it is not in hyper active development). I like the idea, and it would be better than trying to switch to a linux flavor.

However if the VM is not furnished by the OS (Windows7), then it is not as easy to operate the guest OS within the WM, because you must network out to the Internet Connection etc, and Windows 7 professional facilitates this (will 8 have a windows VM? (If you pay more for a  professional ver)

  The more languages and interests I split my time amongst..... the less in depth I go into (or "maintain" any sort of skill level).
So I am reluctant to get into a different OS too !

  In the US Android on smartphones has 53% of the market, elsewhere in the world Windows Mobile is more popular.

  I have read that because the core is the linux kernel, programming might seem like it should like programming in Linux.

  But it is not.

  It is Java programming.

  I guess Windows 8 api will be rich in the ARMS based apis. I read that to some (or all) extent legacy programming will be a dead issue when writing a program for any arms based device.

  Is Windows 8 itself considered arms based? I just haven't got to read enough.

  =============================================

  The biggest problem is that the phones and computers/hardware are being designed towards the OS that will be used.

  TechRepublic said in an article today that 2012 is the year of "HTML5, Mobile, and Tablets".

  I cannot believe the choosing of Android as "Best" by so many carriers for the latest smart phone .... because it is free for the mobile device whereas Windows Mobile adds @$50.00 US dollars to the price of the phone.

  From what I read today, if I wanted to write an app for an Android phone, it would have to qualify to get into the Android Market store, or the phone would have to be "rooted" so the user would have the administative privileges to install it.... but rooting destroys the warranty and the licensing agreement with some carriers !

  Any software I get .... if I can is a no-install using data files for setting storage... Totally agree, keep it OUT of the registry !
I like to be able to edit the .ini files myself, and back them up etc.

  Ok, I am out of gas for today .....

  Ed

 

CommonTater

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #13 on: January 07, 2012, 02:08:44 am »
To be honest, I don't know a lot about mobile OSs or mobiles for that matter.  I work with destop machines all day, almost every day, and getting out of the house means leaving all that at home.  We even have a "no cellphones" rule in our house... if you're here to visit, we'd appreciate it if you were actually here... so the cellphone gets turned off and put in a basket by the door for you to reclaim when leaving.

From what I've seen of Windows 8 ... in previews only... It appears they've designed some kind of new inteface language for the OS, but you can turn it off and do it the "old way" if you wish.  The big noise is that it's "finger friendly"... which means you need touchscreen to get the best from it... and you'll like need to clean it 5 times a day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p92QfWOw88I








Offline Bitbeisser

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Re: Operating Systems....
« Reply #14 on: January 07, 2012, 04:34:11 am »
  From what I read today, if I wanted to write an app for an Android phone, it would have to qualify to get into the Android Market store, or the phone would have to be "rooted" so the user would have the administative privileges to install it.... but rooting destroys the warranty and the licensing agreement with some carriers !
Sorry, but this is utter nonsense!

First of all, to "write" the application, you do not need to apply for membership with the Android market. All tools from Google itself (SDK, emulator,...) are available for free...

Second, if you want to publish apps through the Android Market, the biggest qualifying hurdle is that you have to pay a US$25 registration fee and that you have to provide a real name, email address and phone number, and of course confirm that you adhere to the TOS.

In general, you do NOT need to root any Android phone/tablet to install non-Market apps. You can simply check the "Unknown sources" check box (to "Allow installations of non-Market applications") and can install apps to your hearts content...
(which you should of course only do temporarily while installing your favorite non-Market apps!  8) )

Furthermore, while the applications on an Android device in fact commonly run on a Java VM, that does by no way mean that you are limited to program in Java.
FreePascal is able to compile (Object) Pascal applications for the Android target, in fact Embarcadero (fka Borland/Inprise/CodeGear) is delivering a trimmed down version of FreePascal with their latest Delphi XE2 package to do just that!.
And there are quite a few tools out there to develop Android apps without typing a single line of Java code, both paid and FOSS, for example Adobe Dreamweaver 5.5 or MoSync...

Ralf