10 years gone

Ars Technica has a retrospective about Windows XP’s long life that I found very interesting.

Until reading it, I couldn’t have told you when XP was released. I was out of the Windows biz by then—all of my personal work machines had been running Linux for two or three years by that point, and I had given up all but the most peripheral contact with Windows when I left the University of Miami in ’99.

Still, I did have some dealings with it. We eventually replaced Anne’s Gateway laptop running Windows 95 with a ThinkPad T40 running XP in 2003 or so. Even though it’s some 8 years old we still have it, and it still has XP on it. For the longest time I used it to play World of Warcraft on XP, though it’s been a couple of years since I’ve done that—at this point I just need to wipe it and dispose of it. But it still runs.

And thinking about it, I have to say, XP was pretty darned stable, and something resembling svelte. Whenever I have to use Anne’s current Windows 7 machines, I’m always amazed at how slow such powerful machines can be made to run. XP even on much older hardware is surprisingly snappy.

In retrospect, though I would never have wanted to use it as my primary OS or anything, I have to admit that XP was actually a pretty good OS.

WordPress? Perhaps.

There isn’t a lot of love lost between me and WordPress.  There are things that it sometimes seems to do specifically with the intention of driving me out of my mind.

But I am quickly getting to the point where the only other option I might consider is writing my own blogging software, again (that would be round 3, I believe), and I’m not quite prepared to fall off that particular wagon.

One quick geek note: I have, I believe, arranged my installation to support multiple discrete blogs–I hate, hate, hate WordPress’ pathetic attempts at multi-blog support–with one set of files.

First, I placed a copy of WordPress 3.1.2 in /var/www/wordpress (I’m running on a Debian box with nginx and php-fpm).

Then, to create this site, I first created a MySQL database. Then I created a directory, /var/www/tendentious.org, into which I put the wp-config.php for this site.  I then created a second directory, /var/www/tendentious.org/wordpress, and bind-mounted /var/www/wordpress there.

To add a second blog, I would repeat the steps with a different directory.

This takes advantage of a feature I found in a comment when I was spelunking around the wordpress code, that suggests that the wordpress files will check the directory above them for a wp-config.php.  The bind mounts make it impossible for the code to tell that it’s not got its own copy to work with.

The one wrinkle I don’t know about is what will happen when static files are uploaded.  Right now, when you install plugins from within the browser interface, they get installed into the common directory.  That, obviously, wouldn’t work for, say, images.

Here’s to keeping my fingers crossed.

MS-DOS 5.0 to Windows 7 in a number of easy (though time consuming) steps

The one thing the video glosses over is that there’s no way that you would ever do this in real life, since you were almost guaranteed to have had to reinstall Windows at some point.

Heard it from Chet

Wow, the things you don’t remember

I just ran across a mention of my name in the Changelog to memcached, from 2004. I had forgotten ever contributing anything. In fact, I was having a hard time figuring out what I would have been working on in 2004 that would have been using memcached.

Mind you, I remembered after a moment or two, but it took some serious thinking.

The interesting thing is to realize that I was apparently a fairly early adopter–the entry for my bug report is almost exactly one year after the first entry in the changelog.