Area of Expertise

Recently I had the dubious honour of tidying up a laptop that a colleague had handed down to them by their son who “works for Cisco”.

It quickly became clear he had put absolutely zero effort in getting the laptop ready for use by a normal person. Highlights of this disaster area were:

  • Windows XP SP2, with IE7, and no updates.
  • Firfox 3.6.
  • Graphics driver not installed.
  • Remnants of various online gambling apps and IE toolbars.
  • 10GB system partition (NTFS compressed, naturally) with the rest of the 60GB drive in a second partition that had nothing on it.

I’m sure this guy is a fine network engineer, but remind me never to hire former Cisco employees to do any kind of workstation management.

About The Angry Technician

The Angry Technician is an experienced IT professional in the UK education sector. Normally found in various states of annoyance on his blog. All views are those of his imaginary pet dog, Howard.

3 responses to “Area of Expertise”

  1. Daniel Beardsmore says :

    One of fixes in Vista was the ability to recycle folders stored within a junction point folder, probably to accommodate Vista’s abhorrent abuse of junction points.

    In XP, files on a junction point folder can be recycled, but attempting to recycle a folder would give you one of Microsoft’s helpful “Access is denied” messages.

    Starting from Vista, it would be nice if the Windows installer would let you mount, say, \Users, onto another drive, e.g. make C:\ your SDD, and have C:\Users live transparently on an HDD. Works fine for Linux ……….

    I don’t know if this is still going on, but there was some sort of obsession with XP to partition the hard drive so that C: would run out of space as quickly as possible, and there’s no way to cleanly map D: inside the C: namespace. (I’ve done that before: moved a user profile to a new, second hard drive and mounted that drive as a junction point inside Documents and Settings, which is how I learnt that you can’t recycle folders afterwards :)

    (At least when I’ve seen it, C: is at least 15 GB — 10 is just cruel. Dell used to partition servers with a 12 GB C: partition — so many old servers out there are fighting for space as a result.)

  2. Technoidse says :

    I believe the idea behind the partition splitted hdd’s on almost all brand name computers are due to the idea that the user will save all his data on the large secondary partition.

    So that they (ideally) wont lose any data when they are forced to use the restore function that erases the first partition and often gives you the option to NOT erase the second larger data partition.

    A few restore guides even tells you to cancel and go back to windows and save your files to the second partition to avoid unnesesary data loss.

    On the wtf side, I once encountered a guy that had spliced his drive into 20 2gb partitions since he didnt trust FAT32 since defraging a fat32 drive once made him loose all his data (I imagine he used DOS6.0 defrag :p ).