I have failed as an IT Professional


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    So I get up today and say "Hey, I want to work on that game idea I've been cooking for awhile. Lets install an updated version of Visual Studio and get to work!" (my home dev machine has languished largely unused since I got my current job and I started burning out on the whole "develop stuff in my free time" thing)

    So I go log in to MSDN and click the button for Visual Studio 2013 Update 3.

    "What the hell. This is Windows 7. I have Windows 7 at work." Go I ask Doc Googs about it. "Install SP1, n00b!" says a bunch of stackoverflow junk from a couple years ago.

    "That's literally impossible!" I exclaim as I mash buttons to pull up Windows Update.

    You've got to be kidding me.

    I'm just going to install 8.1. It'll be faster than 3.5 years of patches.
    "Fun, cathartic work on the game" day has now become "Irritating install a new OS" day.



  • Someone here is TRWTF and this time it's not Microsoft.


  • SockDev

    best of luck!

    i shall pour out a dram of "special sheep lineament" for the pixies so that they will be distracted and not trouble you.


  • SockDev

    @cartman82 said:

    Someone here is TRWTF and this time it's not Microsoft.

    And it isn't me either. There's a novelty.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    I assume I had some sort of compelling reason for disabling updates. I can't fathom what the hell it was, but it had to be compelling.



  • Doesn't matter, you'll like 8.1. Join us. JOIN USSSS.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    I'm sure. My lack of installation has not been due to a distaste, but due to the fact that I use this machine for the following roles:

    • Occasional development tasks (on hiatus for several years)
    • Games (haven't had the time for several years)
    • An alarm clock
    • Travel and event booking (every few weeks)

    None of which are compelling enough to merit an OS upgrade except at need.



  • Yeah, I second that. I have to reinstall the OS since one of my drives in the R0 array is coughing up smart errors, the OS is corrupted in some unfathomable way that not even an offline check can restore, and the motherboard doesn't support trim anyway. I thought about just installing Win 10 but there's no way I could use anything with a keylogger telemetry reporting built-in as the machine where I deal with customer access and files. And I've got a shiny new 840 pro to put it all on too.

    It's only been like this since before I Win 8 came out and I upgraded in place.*

    *Yes, I know I'm a bad man and I should feel bad. But the system runs surprisingly stable so long as I avoid using the Corsair 32GB kit that I've already sent for RMA once.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Sigh. Apparently either my crufty old IDE DVD burner has given up the ghost or my pile of crufty old DVDR's has. Can't get a good burn.

    And no, I don't own any large USB sticks (I keep losing everything larger than approximately 256mb).

    I guess I'll just patch.......



  • @scrib said:

    I thought about just installing Win 10 but there's no way I could use anything with a keylogger built-in as the machine where I deal with customer access and files.

    Slashdot's leaking again. Sigh.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Slashdot's leaking again. Sigh.

    While it was a mistake to think about using a tech preview for my main driver in the first place, reports of the possibility that telemetry is being gathered caught me up short (it shouldn't have). I have no problem with MS grabbing telemetry from a test system, I just don't feel like breaking confidentiality laws to let them do so from my own system.


  • area_deu

    I don't know what's the biggest WTF in this thread:

    • Thinking Win8.1 is a better productive system than 7
    • Not updating Windows for 3 years
    • Considering using Win10's developer preview version for a system that has productivity-related tasks


  • @Weng said:

    I'm just going to install 8.1. It'll be faster than 3.5 years of patches.

    But it won't be better. And you know this.



  • It was a bit of a derp, but I would have kept the original drives sitting on the side (and an image sitting on the backup disks).

    I'm not a total idiot. Mostly, sure. But not a total one.



  • Once you've added Classic Start Menu to 8.1, it's not exactly worse either.

    According to my Win 7 desktop I've not installed any updates since 03/02/2013, compared to this 8.1 laptop where the last time I installed an update was 5 hours ago.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    5 hours, 6 bum DVD's and a trip to Walmart to buy a goddamn USB drive later, 1 janky opensource "Put this ISO on this USB drive" tool and I actually have allegedly good installation media.

    Asked some college buddies who have since become system admins how to do this sanely and the answer is thus:
    "Just set up a PXE server and do a network install. It's honestly easier."

    I fucking hate system administrators.




  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Doesn't work because this sandisk presents as fixed storage for some unfuckingknowable reason.

    Installer is running, but apparent disk i/o is near zero.

    Been looking at the "setup is starting" screen for quite some time....

    And after about 30 minutes it's given me the serial number screen. Which I cleverly failed to write down.

    Giving up. Considering change of industry.



  • @accalia said:

    ... "special sheep lineament" for the pixies...

    Don't forget to feed the imps so that they can operate the computer.


  • SockDev

    how can i do that without letting out the magic smoke?


  • SockDev

    Don't get the wet, don't shine light on them and no matter how much they beg, don't feed them after midnight?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    ... Tried to update Windows instead.

    What in the actual fuck:

    Guess it's back to Windows 8.1 and time for a 90 mile roadtrip to the last man on earth with a working DVD burner.



  • Have you been cursed by any witches lately?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    The flailing is entertaining. You should apply for an internship at @cartman82's place.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    So far the only credible suggestion from my thoeretically professional system admin friends is "Install WDS on another PC and install over the network"

    Difficulty: My work laptop is 80 miles away at work (and due to idiotic underbudgeting doesn't have enough disk space for a WDS install anyway), and this is literally the only Windows machine I own (and the only one with optical drives of any sort)

    And my work laptop doesn't have a DVD burner (idiotic underbudgeting!)



  • Don't bother with that shit, use universal usb loader and tell it to load windows 7. It's literally the only thing that consistently works.



  • @aliceif said:

    I don't know what's the biggest WTF in this thread:

    • Thinking Win8.1 is a better productive system than 7
    • Not updating Windows for 3 years
    • Considering using Win10's developer preview version for a system that has productivity-related tasks

    Honestly, Win8.1 is exactly the same productivity wise than 7 if you are a power user. I have noticed no change in my workflow. Just put it into boot to desktop mode and whenever you need to open something hit the windows key and just start typing.

    Also not updating Windows for 3 years is TRWTF.


  • I survived the hour long Uno hand

    At work, I use Rufus (on mobile, so CBA to find the link) to turn bootable .isos into bootable USB sticks, haven't had problems with windows 7, 8, 8.1, 2012 R2, centos, or VMware. Might get the job done for you.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Used Rufus the first time around. Suspect awful usb boot performance is down to crummy usb support on the 2009 vintage motherboard.

    Have retrieved a newly burned dvd and been lectured by bunch of drunk sysadmins about how I need to buy a VMware certified server and a new PC. "Nobody with a single pc has any right to upgrades". Actual quote.

    Now for the drive home.



  • @Weng said:

    awful usb boot performance

    In my experience, on cheap PCs this is often improved by using a back panel USB socket instead of a front panel one. The back panel ones are soldered directly to the motherboard, while the front panel ones are frequently connected via the cheapest shittiest possible piece of unshielded flat ribbon cable folded and twisted and jammed around assorted bits of chassis metal, which is enough to push the packet error rate on a high speed USB transfer over the line.

    Another similarly low-tech fault cause is simple dust buildup inside a long-unused USB socket. Give it a good hard blow out. Try not to spit in it.

    Something else to check is whether or not USB2 support is actually turned on in the BIOS. Some default to USB1 only and the OS never even gets to see that USB2 hardware exists.

    If you'd like to try just bringing your Win7 installation up to date again, the most frequent cause of service pack installation failures I've seen is sabotage by antivirus tools. Try uninstalling yours before doing the update again.

    Next most frequent is update download corruption. Easiest fix I know for that is bringing up an administrative console window (Winkey, CMD, shift-ctrl-Enter) and running the following commands:

    net stop wuauserv
    net stop bits
    rmdir /s /q C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution
    net stop cryptsvc
    rmdir /s /q C:\Windows\System32\Catroot2
    net start wuauserv

    Still almost certain that bringing 7 up to date would ultimately cost less pain than installing 8.1 unless you're seriously interested in making Metro-mode stuff.


  • area_deu

    @penprog said:

    windows key and just start typing

    But it searches really slowly on Win8.1.
    Like, typing in joy2key takes 5 seconds to get results.
    I've never seen something like that that anywhere near as long on Win7, same with Linux equivalents (like the Unity launcher or krunner).
    Not to forget, you only get five real results and up to infinitely many Bing search recommendations on Win8.1, unlike Win7 where you get a scrollable list of proper results.



  • @aliceif said:

    But it searches really slowly on Win8.1.Like, typing in joy2key takes 5 seconds to get results.

    Your computer's broken.


  • area_deu

    Oh wait, it's only when using the start screen.
    It searches just fine when using Win+s

    Huh.

    I guess Win8.1 suffers from discoursistent performance



  • Hm, I don't see that. The most delay I ever see is 1 sec, plus another 1-1.5 for the Bing stuff I generally don't care about.

    My major annoyance is that there's no way to teach Windows Search that "paint.net" is a application and not a website, if you don't hit Enter fast enough you get the damned website.


  • area_deu

    Could it be that Windows unloads whatever powers the search when the computer is in idle too long?
    It kind of seems to be that way.



  • Do you have spinning drives? Maybe it's a disk access thing. I'm all solid-state.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Do you have spinning drives? Maybe it's a disk access thing. I'm all solid-state.

    A good point. I just installed Windows Server 2012 on a regular disk and difference in search performance is palpable.

    Also, if you used a start menu replacement tool like a man, there wouldn't be any stupid bing results to mess you up.


  • area_deu

    Well, I'm not a man.

    I guess it's harddrives being too 20th century for me, after all.



  • @aliceif said:

    Well, I'm not a man.

    Spoke to blakey, who complained like 5 times how he can't search for paint.net due to bing interference.



  • What's needed here is obviously some kind of namespace resolution for search terms. For consistency with previous MS practice, the ~ character would need to be involved. Perhaps a simple search for ~~?\{root}{impersonate-level=impersonate}{threading-model=apartment}{CIMV376}{setlocal //enablenamespaceexpansion}Namespaces::Predefined::ThirdPartyApplications::paint.net might be all that's required?



  • @flabdablet said:

    Perhaps a simple search for ~~?\{root}{impersonate-level=impersonate}{threading-model=apartment}{CIMV376}{setlocal //enablenamespaceexpansion}Namespaces::Predefined::ThirdPartyApplications::paint.net might be all that's required?

    Your suggestion doesn't contain any GUIDs. You should put a few GUIDs in there to make it look more authentic. :confused:



  • You don't have to use the friendly names.



  • @Weng said:

    Just set up a PXE server and do a network install. It's honestly easier.

    If this is the easy way to install Windows these days, then MS has done an excellent job on moving users to the other platforms.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    It's not. Systems administrators just like pretending their home is an enterprise. It's a disease.



  • @Weng said:

    It's not. Systems administrators just like pretending their home is an enterprise. It's a disease.

    Shit, you just described every SysAdmin I've ever met.



  • It isn't, really. The least gotcha-laden way to set up Windows these days, as it has been since Windows 98, is to do it from optical media.

    The easiest way to acquire that is to download an ISO from Digital River and burn it to a disc or copy it to an optical drive emulator. If Digital River is annoyingly slow for you, bit-identical ISOs can be obtained safely via BitTorrent if you Google for their SHA1 checksums.

    The most reliable way I know to get Windows or any other MS product to activate and remain activated with zero hassles is to use one of the published KMS volume licence keys when you install it, and have py-kms running on some machine somewhere on your LAN and an appropriate SRV record set up in your LAN's DNS server.

    Naturally you should only do this after researching and purchasing the appropriate MS licences for your use case. If your primary motivation for installing py-kms is to avoid paying MS for software, as opposed to simple unwillingness to allow unpredictable failures of their technical licence enforcement measures to interrupt your workflow, you have failed as an IT professional.



  • @flabdablet said:

    from optical media

    Would that be the reason why almost all laptops today still come with a DVD drive although no body uses them? I wonder when MS and Apple will release their crap in USB drives.



  • @Eldelshell said:

    Would that be the reason why almost all laptops today still come with a DVD drive although no body uses them?

    Mine doesn't. Neither does the one I was given at work.



  • As a working IT technician who occasionally has to deal with netbooks and tablets that don't have inbuilt optical drives, I have found an optical drive emulator to be an indispensable tool.

    Debian has for some time now provided unified installer images that can be written out to optical media or a USB flash drive and will boot successfully from either, but proprietary systems frequently seem to need a logical-sector translation layer wedged in before their optical-disc image can boot from something the PC sees as a hard drive. It's nice to have that done by controller firmware so I don't need to deal with it.


  • area_deu

    I personally use mine to rip CDs or install games I have lying around.
    Although ... I could just as well use an external one, I guess.


    Filed under: Doing it wrong?


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