Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Three More Days

Our plan was to leave Fountain Hills tomorrow morning and move on to Las Vegas. The weather is perfect here and we have no real reason to spend time in Vegas so we have decided to stay here for another three days.

Just after this decision was made the awning guy phoned to tell us his son was injured at school and is in the hospital. I told him to go to the hospital and deal with his son, that tomorrow would work just as well. 

It is forecast for 91F today. The A/C is having trouble keeping up.

Windows XP

Today is the last day for Windows XP support. No more updates, we are now more open to viruses. I have only one of 4 computers still on XP, my little Asus Netbook which will be moved to Linux when we get home. 

What angers me is the fact that my computing needs could get by quite nicely with Windows 98. I do not "game" and I do not watch movies on the computer. I surf the web, email, write and read Blogs and run an older version of Quicken. These things make up 99.9% of my computer use. I could care less if "Bloody Assassin 2019" requires 12 Gigs of RAM to get to level 35. Quicken requires 500 Megs and that is all I need. Microsoft, quit making me spend more money for upgrades I have no use for. 

It is like the auto industry announcing that since the 2015 model year is out, nothing older can be serviced or repaired. It is "legal" extortion.

17 comments:

  1. I'm impressed that the awning guy had the presence of mind to call you!

    As for the Windows XP thing, it's like when Apple came out with OS X and eventually stopped supporting Classic altogether. I was so frustrated and scrambled to find replacements for my Classic apps, but I got over it. Technology changes. If manufacturers spent all their time providing support for old, outdated, tech there would be no money or manpower for innovation. Microsoft gave LOTS of heads up about this and I can't believe the number of people who are now scrambling to make other arrangements.

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    1. I still like to know that when the starter on my '89 Honda goes, unlike the software industry, I can take it to a dealer and get it fixed without being told my only option is to buy a new car.

      Plus I have been told my Asus will likely not work with the $299 Windows 8.1 even if I decided to upgrade so my options are to either throw it out or go to Linux.

      Yes, I know it will keep working and might never get a serious virus. I also suspect the virus writers will be working hard to get into XP machines now that there is no one to slow them down.

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    2. I don't think cars, especially older cars than are more mechanical than electrical, compare to electronics. Computers just aren't mean to have that kind of lifespan.

      But Macs do have an incredibly long lifespan compared to PCs, though, so if you want longevity, you might want to reconsider your stance on them. My mid-'90s Apple laptop that started off running Classic is apparently still doing fine running the latest version of OS X (slowly, but fine for web searching and word processing) while my mid-'90s Windows laptop that ran 3.1 wouldn't know what to do with Windows 8...

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    3. That should tell you something about how Windows has updated over time while OS X has stayed pretty much the same.

      That said I like Macs almost as much as PCs so I'm not biased one way or the other.

      What's happened is Apple has been using a Unix based OS since they first release OS X and haven't changed anything of substance.

      Microsoft did a major update to the core OS when they went from Windows 95 to Windows NT/XP.

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    4. That should read "from Windows 95/98 to Windows NT/XP"

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  2. And I should have added that you can put Windows on a Mac.

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  3. As I've said before...no antivirus, no updates...no problem. Our XP and our Vista work as good as they need to, and that won't change just because Microsoft stops their official support.

    The difference between Macs and PCs is that you could buy a new PC every three years and still have spent less than your 9 year old Mac cost. People who use Macs for everyday simple computer use continually try to justify how much they paid for them. Sorry, can't be done.

    What are you doing with the AC on...? I thought you weren't spending the day inside...

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    1. "People who use Macs for everyday simple computer use continually try to justify how much they paid for them. Sorry, can't be done."

      It can.

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  4. There is no (good) reason to stop using XP. Keep your anti-virus up to date and you'll be fine. My weather station is running on XP and I don't have any plans to give Microsoft another $100 just because they said I should.

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    1. MSE (Microsoft's anti virus program) is also dropping XP protection. I did a quick Google search and installed Bit Defender as they say they are still protecting XP. I don't know much about Bit Defender other than that.

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    2. I use Avast on all my computers these days. Used to use AVG Free but found it missed some things it shouldn't have.

      Avast has a free version.

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  5. I have to comment on yet another ignorant comment about the cost of Macs versus PCs. If you go from one used machine to another, they are super affordable, and you can buy used with Apple without compromise because their machines are always a couple of years ahead of PCs in terms of specs, so an older one can serve you for a long time.

    I just keep selling my older units to finance a newer one and have averaged $700 per machine since I started using Macs in 2003, and that's with my having had both several top of the line, multi-thousand dollar Macs that I paid peanuts for. I recently did a straight-up trade of my 2009 Macbook Pro for a 2011 MacBook Air.

    Another thing people don't factor in with Macs is that you get everything out of the box, no need to buy extra peripherals like a webcam or software, like anti-virus.

    Add in the fact that Macs hold value after the initial depreciation and they are no more, and probably less, expensive than a Windows computer.

    In 2012 client outfitted me with a top of the line HP PC that came in at about $4,000 once it had all the options, peripherals, and and anti-virus software. My used 2009 Macbook Pro had the same specs, options, and peripherals and cost me $1,500.

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    1. Actually Rae, PCs (the kind made to run Windows) and Macs use exactly the same hardware now. Yes Apple charges more because they use parts that are spec'd especially for Apple but the technical specs on them are exactly the same as what you get when you buy a PC.

      In fact it was several years ago that Apple made the switch to use the exact same Intel processor as are used on Windows based PCs. That''s why Mac can now run Windows in native mode.

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  6. I'd just back up the data frequently, and continue to run a third-party antivirus as long as you can. You should be fine. I doubt the virus writers will be specifically targeting XP, though what they write for later versions of windows will likely work on XP since they are similar.

    I've got an old, admittedly seldom-used machine with XP that I intend to keep running for a long time.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    DF, Mexico
    Where we are hoping to be in the Yucat√°n by week's end.

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    1. Thanks Kim, this laptop is not the main laptop so there is nothing on it that I cannot afford to lose. I have a good backup that I can easily go back to if disaster strikes. I just get annoyed by the concept of scheduled obsolescence on a product we paid good money for.

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    2. I'm with you on the obsolescence, especially as software doesn't wear out. While Win7 has begun to win me over, the fact is that XP worked just fine for me. On the other hand, hardware does change pretty fast, so the operating systems need to be updated to take advantage of all the newer things -- 64 bit processing, USB 3.0, eSata, etc.

      By the way, THANK YOU SO MUCH for the comment on my blog about Route 150. If nothing else, it's incredibly helpful for mental preparation, but I'm also trying to see if there's another way.

      Saludos

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    3. There really isn't Kim. You can go via Veracruz and then east close to the water as far as you can go but that is a much longer route and puts you back on 150D at Minatitlan where the road is possibly the worse. Just tighten your fillings and go for it. Your choices are to drive really slow in the slow lane or dangerously fast in the fast lane to keep from being rear ended.

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