Well it seems things ar quite interesting to me. I’m a long time Linux and Windows user, and a not so long time Mac OS X user(unfortuntatly the bloody thieves at Byron Bay ended my first excurse into that land).
There are a few good things about all of them and sometimes they simply suck all. I just had on extremly negative experience a few weeks or so ago. I found out that some software misbehaved (well in the end it turned out that it was me who got it wrong). I try not too get too angry because it hardly pays of. But this experience was unique to some extend.
I have spend days after days on administration any kind of system, (but mostly my Linux boxes) and did not bother. I just saw it as a “matter of fact”. Things may be broken, but most of the time one can fix them. But this time I was just in the mood to “use the software” and this is what I probably are not doing regularly. But because I just wanted to get my stuff done. I was extremly upset that it didn’t work. If others have the same goal, getting their things done than I’m not suprised about reactions like throwing out the monitor through some windows, takin a hammer and smash the f… think into pieces.
However as programmer I’m probably a bit more “used” to figure out things, and if I wear my programmer hat I have other addresses of my hatred. There is one thing that drives me crazy than, lacking backward-compatibility. Unfortunatly I have more than enough experiences with breaking APIs and maybe that’s a reason I still am using C very much. I just remember one are where this has turned out badly. That’s with the break of backwards-compatability from glib-1.2 to glib-2.xx. I can’t blame C for it but the glib-developers. And what do I have to read now they are planning for breaking code again with version 3.0. I doubt that many really have appreciated the need to rewrite their glib-2 based code from 1.2.x, And that’s now just around 8 years or so ago. Do we really have to be enforced to rewrite our code every 8 years?
Unfortunatly this lack of backward-compatability get normal more and more. I wonder if all the programmers run out of projects?
Another big disapointement was developing for Vista. Vista seems to be one of the most developer unfriendly systems currently available. If a file is lacking you just get a 0x0002 (IIRC) but not the slighest idea on what may be missing. For that you need third-party tools…
The requirements for running Vista are that high that, it needs a very decent machine to cope with it properly. Is that really the advance, getting less done in more and more cyles?
After my excursion into Vista land I got back to Windows Server 2003 64-bit and am quite happy with it.
Now for 10 years I settled more or less to the following setup:
– Debian as my main system (I wanted to switch to FreeBSD, but there’s a bit that’s not running there I really need (VmWare)
– virtual machines driven by vmware
For my kind of work this simply seems one of the best solutions. Linux does all my daily tasks (mainly in form of XEmacs, but also gcc, OpenOffice, all the many text tools and many scripting languages). Since 1998 my Data have survied around 3-4 updates and 3 new machines. And they still are all accessible to me. Even code I wrote during all this years simply can run today. I do not care much about viruses, because not many are known on Linux.
What especially has turned out be be useful are the virtual machines. the wonderful thing about them is you just make a snapshot or copy and if you mess up you just go back to a know good state and you do not have to reinstall anything else.
I guess overall one has to conclude that the Registry is a real weakness in Windows, if that’s broken you can forget your windows. Linux is not ideal but but the different text files hardly can be broken that much and restoring them is so easy in comparison.
Howerver I know of quite lot of people beeing very happy with their Windows XP systems also. So I guess it’s not that bad if it comes to registry corruption…