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March of the Linux

Thanks to all who have helped with previous ones, which I posted on:

Special thanks to prahlad, nikolasco, and zaimoni for replying to my last query.

Here's my fortnightly update:

  • 1. IE7 Tabbrowser Extensions: I gave up on IE7 and switched - first to Opera 8.5, then to Mozilla 1.7.12. The former gives me tabbed browsing with no GMail; the latter works like Firefox for all intents and purposes, sans certain plugins.

  • 2. Turning off security prompts in Vista: To quote U2, I still haven't found what I'm looking for. I haven't really been looking, though.

  • 3. Datalog: nikolasco recommended XSB, and I have since read some good things about it, so that is what I will try this fall. It'll take me a summer to get completely prepped.

Now for the new questions:

More Windows Woes

Here are just a few of the persistent problems I am having with Windows Vista. I'm not 100% sure it's all Vista-specific, but I haven't had these particular problems with XP Pro or Home.

  • Closing windows with Ctrl-W. What happened to this feature? Do I have to do some explicit mapping of control keys?

  • Elevating security privileges for file moving. Is there any way to "Run Elevated" by default? It gets really annoying when you pop in a CD, its AUTORUN executable kicks in, and the 10 minues later, you get a message that you didn't have system administrator privileges and now the installer is quitting.

  • System Restore. I'd like to be able to roll back the registry to an earlier state, as I could in XP. "Add/Remove Programs" seems far more helpless than it used to be, and it seems just as dangerous as Sysem Restore to me.

Windows applications problems

  • Restoring tabs in IE7. Any idea whether there is a plug-in?

  • Making Opera 8.5 work with GMail. I would like to have those Javascript-based "cc:" field auto-completion features and such.

  • Reading Chinese... or not. I'd also like to be able to turn on Unicode, Big-5, traditional encodings, and other standardized encodings. Edit, 04:30 CST Mon 06 Mar 2006 - However, this needs to be off by default! I installed Proofing Tools and now the whole computer has a tendency to revert back to Chinese. I would like to turn off the Pinyin and all other Chinese, and only get them when I hit my escape key.

Non-Vista question, kindasorta: latest Athlon processors

Which one of the following do you recommend for a good desktop PC featuring heavy development and testing of graphics, geometry, genetic and evolutionary computation, and why?

Thanks in advance,


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
Mar. 6th, 2006 03:48 pm (UTC)
The perils of cut and paste
Oops - yes, it is, and someone replied to say the same thing two weeks ago. That was a cut and paste at 05:00 when I was feeling a tad wonky.

My point was that LJ is a good thing to support.

Mar. 6th, 2006 11:47 am (UTC)
While a paid account is indeed a wise investment, that feature is available to all :D. Of course, use of a blogging tool like drivel(1) (or just good ol' fashioned vim to edit, followed by cut-and-pasting your way to victory) renders it unnecessary.

LJ -- bringing you vim's autosave technology, but not its thousands of other wonders.

You're one of the few people I'd advise to bother with an FX. Compilation, regex matching via NFA->glushkov/thompson automata and heavy graphics are about as memory-intensive as things get. That second memory channel (and resultant sweet 6.4G of peak memory throughput) will come in handy, especially as these apps are some of the few in which you can expect enough attention to have been paid to memory usage to actually make possible sustained peak throughput. I've yet to see a general-purpose single-user workstation setup that'd benefit more from additional cycles than improved memory usage (whether with regard to DRAM or hard disk), so I'd say single-core if it weren't for FX all being dual-core.

Then again, the IOMMU present in all 64-bit Athlons is said to remedy many of the issues one dealt with in i386 hell, so that may no longer be true. All of my experience is with i386 and Alpha/SPARC; I've yet to get into the low-level optimization work on IA64 and AMD64 that would leave me in a position to wax authoritatively on the subject.

One thing to note about the FX60 is that it's the end-of-line for Socket 939. You'll be unable to upgrade processors on the same motherboard, IIRC. Note also that it won't support DDR2, whereas the FX-62 is expected to (on the AM2 interface).

If you intend to keep hold of this box for more than two years, I'd go with AM2, hands down -- it'll let you swap out either proc or mobo for the foreseeable future. If your department's buying you a machine every year, go for the FX-60.

As for the graphics card crap, I've yet to upgrade past my trusty set of Matrox G450's with 32MB onboard RAM, available for < $50, so I have no idea :). They work beautifully with mplayer's mga_vid driver and the matroxfb(4) framebuffer, and I don't intend to upgrade until AGP slots are no longer available.

I hope that helps in one or another way.
Mar. 6th, 2006 02:27 pm (UTC)
All users get auto-save. You don't have to dish out $150 for that.

Mar. 6th, 2006 03:52 pm (UTC)
Er, yes, I knew that
I meant that the addition of that feature (which I only noticed two weeks ago) makes the service that much more worth while, because I am very forgetful and often leave posts unfinished on the dozen or so machines I used.

Please see above. :-)

Mar. 6th, 2006 04:22 pm (UTC)
Re: Er, yes, I knew that
$150 seems like a lot to spend on LJ. Do you really get that much of a bonus? I don't think I'd use it, even if it were available. At one time I had a paid account, but I never bothered to use any of the additional features (aside from the ability to search based on interest and extra icons).

I may be willing to shell out that much for a blog on an external host, but LJ seems pretty far removed from that.

Sorry about repeating what'd already been addressed. I should've read the comments before posting my own.

(Deleted comment)
Mar. 7th, 2006 02:28 am (UTC)
Re: Er, yes, I knew that
I don't have the faintest clue what "MogileFS" may be, but I know memchache! That gets me a sticker, right?


iLife has all sorts of blogging features. When I get ready to make an earning blog (even if it operates at a loss), it certainly won't be on LJ.

Mar. 7th, 2006 08:54 pm (UTC)
Re: Er, yes, I knew that
This reminds me of my favorite GNU toy, SCREEN !!!!
Mar. 8th, 2006 12:25 am (UTC)
So, uh, why is this post called "MARCH OF THE LINUX" if all it contains is whining wibble about how Vista sux?
Mar. 12th, 2006 05:21 am (UTC)
I'm marching TOWARDS Linux, fllo!

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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