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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation

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upgrade mark 2.0 - okay, so yes, it was craziness
children of dune - leto 1
So maybe the color is actually fine, and LJ interface is not ten percent off. I was just crazy. The blue is still wrong, but give it twenty-four hours and I won't care. I am reconciled to neat, clean, readable ClearType text. So yeah, crazy. I kind of knew this, but it's comforting to get confirmation.

So I am converted to the Windows 7 side of the Force. I am totes not even ashamed.

Dell Dock: Better Than Quicklaunch

The Dell Dock thing at the top of the desktop is awesome, not least because when I click on the top of anything that's on top of the desktop, it pops out, so I can add my desktop shortcut there. I missed the quicklaunch for about five seconds, then when I downloaded the dock I didn't anymore. It pretty much takes the place of the quicklaunch and better, because as of last year I had added pretty much every shortcut I use daily in there so I didn't have to keep going to the Start Menu or desktop whenever I wanted something.

The Need for Speed

Windows 7 is fast. I mean, I get most of it is I've lost all the excess clutter from two years of XP and a clean install of a new OS and a ton of useless shit, but it's so weirdly exciting for startup not to take the time it takes to make a cup of coffee and have a muffin. Which really does argue I need to just suck it up and start doing a format/reinstall when I buy new computers and once a year, because srsly, this is working for me. The partition does encourage easy format/reinstall without angst.

Effects do seem to cause a minor delay, but I've always stripped out windows effects fairly early on for performance. This time around, I am going to enjoy them for a bit before I start working out what I can live without.

Windows Explorer Pin

Pinned to the taskbar is a Windows Explorer that pretty much is the access to everywhere I ever wanted to go--I assume this replaces having to have My Computer, My Network Places, et al as sepate desktop shortcuts when they can all be in one-folder shopping. I like the Library containers immensely for the multilinking of different folders that have similar things but not necessarily need to be all together in the same location. Even moreso when I'm really inconsistent with where I keep pictures and graphics depending on what they're for. Precreated containers to hold links to all the various places I keep media is nice.

I do not like I can't get Control Panel into Favorites to save my life.

Organization Is Key

You know, I've never actually, except with my experiments with John Sheppard I, had the chance to build my file systems and organize from the ground up like this. Especially with everything I want self-installed and without bloatware I have to remove in pieces when I find it. I get the feeling a lot of my enthusiasm at this point is being able to set up everything from the start intuitive to how I think, and Windows 7 really doesn't fight me the same way XP did.

Actually, that is a main point of my enjoyment; I love XP like whoa and my hatred of Vista is beyond words, but Windows 7 is--and I don't believe I am saying this--really intuitive and about ten times easier to use. I can't tell, however, if this is because it's just that more user friendly, or I've been online for long enough that I can adapt to pretty much any user interface out there because God knows, it's not like fangirls don't learn to roll with it when we're confronted with a GUI that makes no sense.

For the first time, my desktop is pretty much clear; the only things beside the Dell Dock and two widgets are the recycle bin and a shortcut to my writing folder. Everything else can be handled by the dock or in the pinned Windows Explorer folder.

The only thing I regret is adding Office and Firefox and iTunes to the OS partition; originally, I thought the trade-off of having to reinstall was worth it for the speed, and there's still nine G in there for the page file, but OS updates and driver updates are going to eat that space. I'm thinking when it gets below 7 G free, I'll move Firefox and iTunes onto the Adam partition and leave C just for Microsoft. Though I have to admit, the paging file isn't getting much use so far. RAM is handling everything and then some.


So far, turned off the User Authorization thing since it was driving me crazy. Office kept giving me the EULA every time I opened it until I hunted down the reason is because I have to go into Properties and check Run as Administrator. I am sure there are other things I will stumble over soon to make me wonder wtf, but that day is not today.

I'm figuring out how much of the visuals are worth keeping. There's a tiny but to me noticeable delay when typing, which I can't tell is a driver issue or the fact my graphic card is working like whoa to keep up with the OS graphics and Windows effects. I kind of like them now, so I'll wait until I'm feeling impatient to start stripping for performance, since I'm not sure that's what's causing the typing problem. I need to check and see if there's anything on keyboard drivers that I need to update again. I mean, there shouldn't be, it's a basic laptop keyboard and very not special, but still. My card is updated to max and I think I grabbed everything else that wasn't nailed down except bluetooth, which a.) I never use anyway and b.) for some reason really does not want to install. It's currently not even showing up in device manager anywhere I can find, but as my phone doesn't need it and that's the only thing I used it for, I am letting it slide.

I'm still only installing programs as I need them and just leaving the ones I don't in the Download folder until required. I am not looking forward to reinstalling my Perl libraries again and the interface to retrieve them. That was two separate days of work to accept I had to move them to root access and I hate having things at root access that aren't system files. I want them in neat folders under User > Jenn > Programming > Perl as God intended. Putting them to root on Adam still hurts a little; I want them at D > Programming > Perl. And a pony.

I am starting to sound kind of evangelical about this. Honestly, I really, really did not want to change from XP--I knew it! I didn't hate it! It was like a favorite sweater, chewed on by children and kind of fit wrong, but I loved it because it was old and familiar. This is very shiny and apparently, it does in fact mean Microsoft is capable of making improvements that are actual, y'know, improvements. Color me shocked.

Okay, the keyboard delay thing is getting more annoying. Hmm.

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Did you have to download netframe?

Separately? No. I started with a blank drive.

I was looking at your problem you mentioned in the last entry and am thinking. You really don't have to use Dell Manager and can use your browser instead--I hate Dell Download Manager. Can you do a format and clean install and start from scratch by any chance? Or do you still have stuff on there you don't want to lose? I installed the OS, then went and did individual downloads from Dell one by one adn haven't had any problems.

*clears throat*


Told you so.


I actually really like Win 7 as well. It's odd. I loved XP Pro and hated Vista with such passion, but Win 7 is a worthy successor for the NT line. (I have this theory that Microsoft has two seperate development teams working parallel: the team that is responsible for Win98, 2000, XP and Win7 - the mostly stable, mostly intuitive ones - and Win95, ME and Vista, which I like to call the bastard children of DOOM AND DEATH)

....that makes a crazy amount of sense. Windows 7 is just shockingly easy compared to Vista, and I was tech supporting my mom on that OS and hating every minute of it.

It's been fun reading your computer adventures just as I finished reformatting my main drive and re-installing XP. I did two major mess ups, which considering this is the third time I've done this makes no sense at all, but it's together and running as fast as an old machine can run. One of the strangest things that's happened is the desktop icons are extra large and no matter how often I tell it to go back to large it refuses. It's almost like it has a mind of it's own so I've decided to allow this to please the computer gods.

7 does sound interesting. Might consider it for the newer computer that's running Vista.

Seeing your user picture makes me smile. I taught at his high school, but not when he was there. He comes back and visits and the town goes wild.

The Dell Dock came with my Win XP Netbook, too. Drove me absolutely bugshit because it kept ghosting down from the top of my screen when I tried to click on one of my browser tabs, which Google Chrome of course arranges along the top edge of my screen, and I'd have to sit back and wait for it to figure out it wasn't wanted and get back out of the way. Finally found out how to make the dock hide forever. (Mind you, I'm one of those people who wants maybe three or four icons in the Quicklaunch and will quite happily go to the programs list in the Start menu or even to the desktop for all else. One of my Quicklaunch spots is for the icon to send me back to the desktop, in fact.)

One of these days, I'll get Win 7 for my desktop. One of these days. Probably when I can no longer view vids and DVDs on the desktop and it becomes one huge paperweight -- that's the last thing I really want to keep doing on the desktop, and thus far the player (and monitor and speakers) are working just fine, so...

It's charming -- I can see your mouth moving and the words sound like English....

This is why I keep av_lad around. I know just enough to know how much I don't know.

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