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There has been a lot of positive buzz about Windows 7; a lot of stuff that has me excited about it.  As a user of Windows XP, I want to move on.  Vista is ‘nice’ but didn’t really deliver anything extra for me.  Sure some nice eye candy, and perhaps nicer plug and pray, but what a pig.  It’s just a system hog, and I wasn’t ready to update any computers yet.

With the release of Windows 7 on October 22nd. 2009 I will be purchasing a new laptop with windows 7, and will probably get a version for my main desktop machine.  Though it’s only an AMD 4000, I don’t think I will have any trouble running Windows 7.  It’s that machine I am installing on today so I will be able to compare performance from the same system running Windows XP and Windows 7.

I received a product key, downloaded the iso and burned a new DVD.  For the system I grabbed an old 80GB hdd I am not using any longer and put it as the sole drive.

Never really using Vista myself (of course I have seen it and helped others with it) I don’t know it intimately.  This is going to create a bit of a learning curve here.  The installation moved along pretty smoothly; couple reboots, nothing special–then it happened.

Black screen.  I had a black screen with nothing more then version informaion at the lower right hand corner:

Evaluation copy. Build 7100.

I was still able to move the mouse pointer around the screen, but couldn’t do anything else.  I tried restarting, removing unneeded stuff, reloading.  Nothing was fixing it.  Time to hit the web.  It didn’t take too long to find, ten-fifteen minutes, I ran into this website, http://windows7forums.com, and they had a thread on this very issue.  It is definitely a monitor/video issue, though some of the resolutions where slightly different.

For me, it was having two monitors connected while loading.  Once I disconnected the second monitor from my system, Windows 7 was able to finish it’s “first time boot” and setup the environment.         Wow there is a lot of eye candy here!

I am running around setting stuff up, checking things out.  (cool wallpaper schems).  Let’s set up taskmgr to launch on start up.

Hey, why can’t I add a new shortcut on a right-click?  That’s a pain, what am I missing?

I created the shortcut to taskmgr on the desktop and copied it to the startup folder.  When I did that I was prompted for Admin rights to do that.  That is interesting, not sure if like that. I guess I need to take some time to look into security.  Specially since that was the single reason so many people hated Vista, it locked up so many areas breaking shit.  Whatever, as long as they haven’t totally abstracted everything away, there will be a solution.

Since I am trying out a new OS, I might as well load up a beta IDE too.  So I am now in the middle of loading up VS2010.  I have no idea if I will have any time to work with it, but I hope I make the time.

Windows 7 changing the wallpaper automagically is weird.  I dig it though.

Interesting, SQL 2008 (bundled with VS2010 beta) must be at SP1 or higher to work with Winows7.  I am glad it let me know while loading it.

Everytime I reboot and see that long-lived black screen, I get nervous that the system will lock again.

At this point, I will have to say that Winows 7 is running as well as a new installation of winows XP does.  It boots as fast plus launches and runs apps as fast.  Can’t wait until I get more stuff loaded.

My trip through ruby has been an interesting one.  It’s a pretty straight forward language.  I need some ideas to build so I can get more practice.

I have starting into rails to try that out, and it’s amazing how much of ASP.NET MVC seems to modeled off of it.  I really do love the MVC pattern.  What I am not loving is the total pain in the ass it is to work with rails configurations.  It’s like everything Linux, config, config, config.  Granted I really don’t know what I am doing when it comes to Apache, but things should not be this cumbersome, and not have a straight answer on setting up things like .htaccess files.

I am using my Dreamhost account to run my rails apps and I took a break from trying to get the static stuff to show on the site and not be sent through rails.  Items like css files, image file, etc.

I am assuming it’s something I need to do in an .htaccess file or something, but I am no positive, and there are direct configuration instructions on what to do.  So its trial and error, and there are a lot of it.  Shit, I can’t build anything because I am too busy configuring my server.  So sure Ruby on Rails may be great for rapid development, but if I can’t get it running, I am not getting anywhere.

Well, enough ranting, back to it….

Had another thought.  This really is where Microsoft shines and why they are used over other options, their stuff works.

I can remember back in July of 2008 or so when ASP.NET MVC was in beta one or three and I was tyring it out, I made it a hell of a lot further in a couple of days then I did with rails.  One thing to note is that I know IIS pretty darn well, and don’t know Apache that well at all, and perhaps that is the difference here.  Working with IIS for so many years much of is just natural, you don’t think about it.

Ah but wait, that is not it, because when I was writing ASP.NET MVC I was in VS2008 and the browser being used was  cassini web server (built into Visual Studio).  In this note, I guess that is the same as using WEBRick which I have not had issues using.  So perhaps all of this is due to my lack of knowledge of Apache?

For months and months now I have asked myself, “Self, what language next, Ruby, Python, something else?” and has driven me crazy.  Someday I will ask myself why I spent so much time thinking about it instead of just digging in to something.  Well the real truth to that is time.  Sure I have spent time on the Ruby site going through browser-enabled 15 minute intro and some general reading.  It never really sticks until you throw together a couple of apps.

Over the last eight months I have been on a big web front end kick, getting myself up to speed on web display stuff like CSS, JavaScript, and jquery.  It’s been a lot of fun, but I really am not a good page designer, so besides reproducting current layouts there wasn’t a real lot for me to do.  

And there is always ASP.NET MVC which I have been following and learning off and on since August of 2008.  Having the web skills when putting together some learning MVC sites was really useful.  Don’t worry, I wont go on another, “I love MVC…”, rant.

Saturday morning I was in our local library with my two sons picking out movies reading some books, messing around and found myself at the card catalog computer screen.  Hey do you remember actual card catalogs, the rows and rows of drawers which contained cards of all the books in the library.  Here is one area computers help one-billion percent.  Anyway, I did my usual search for ASP.NET, came up with the same books as usual.  A 2008 book I had already checked out (and didn’t like too much) during my web learning, and some older stuff.  Oh hum I thought….

Than I had an idea and started typing

ruby programming

A match, wow a match and a recent book too.  I was was feeling a bit excited.  Okay, let’s try another

python programming

Ah, nothing on that one.  Well that settles it—right, wrong or indifferent, I will start with Ruby.  Well, I have always been leaning this way anyhow.  The exposure I have had, I have liked, now to come up with an app to put together.  Then of course if I get my arms around the language I will have to move on to Rails, and Iron Ruby (Uses .NET’s DLR).

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