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subxero Sat Feb 23 2008 at 3:52 pm
I finally reformatted my computer
so I can take advantage of two SATA 400 GB disks I've had for like, four months. So after I got Windows to finally say, "holy crap, hard disks!" I realize that Windows screwed up the boot loader, and decided to copy NTLDR, boot.ini, and NTDETECT.COM to a totally different drive. Not only on a different drive, but in some obscure folder.

Regardless, got it working eventually (thanks, Linux) and set everything up nice, then Ghosted the partition to a DVD. Screw messing with that crap again.

I'm using Windows XP SP2 and I realized later, when I was trying to set up RAID 1 (mirroring) between two of my disks, that Windows XP (even the "Professional" edition) doesn't god-damn support mirroring. So I modified some core system files (dmboot.sys, dmconfig.dll, dmadmin.exe) and now Windows thinks, "Hey, I'm a server operating system now." Great, that's one change I regret not making before I Ghosted the partition. So every time I restore the image from the DVD, I'll have to repeat the process -- that's where the Linux live CD comes in again. Linux keeps getting me out of weird situations with Windows. And out of a weird situation with FreeBSD after FreeBSD decided to totally hose one of my hard drives (thanks, FreeNAS. Ugh.)

And holy crap, Windows XP doesn't support Intel Xeons -- I'm planning on buying two quad-core Intel Xeons (because I can) but XP won't see all of the cores, because it's intentionally crippled. It also won't see the 4 GB of RAM I plan on buying, because it's intentionally crippled not to support PAE. PAE has been around since the mid-freaking-nineties; why the hell doesn't a modern operating system support it? Even Vista's PAE support is completely missing, and that operating system almost requires 4 GB of RAM. Holy hell.

So after all of this, I realize that I should have just installed Windows Server 2003.

Thanks, Microsoft. Dammit.

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