Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Reinstalling the Internet Computer

My internet computer caught something, or the hardware glitched, it is an OLD machine in any case. I was left with a non functioning junque computer to use to browse the net. So i had to rebuild it one more time - so i though i would write it all down and tell you WHATIDIDWAS

My WinXP CD was bad - kept complaining about some or the other sys file that was missing. so I logged into NEWZBIN downloaded a WinXP ISO from using
NZB-O-MATIC PLUS. Not to worry i thought - i had a valid license and all the XP cd's are the same anyway, and i had the magic registration string on the back of the cd case. (more later...) used Nero to burn a CD, this was all done on a functioning computer of course.

Went to brew a programmer pot-o-coffee as windows did its install thing.

After XP got installed i had problems getting the network running - seems that there are 2 lan connections on my motherboard (A7N8X) - the Invidia one got zapped in a lightning strike a while back - and windows wanted to use that one for the connection - not good - so i re-installed the drivers for the 3comm chip on the motherboard and fiddled with the lan settings and finally had a connection to the net.

Note: The XP ISO i got was something that looked like Vista in a way, well at least as much as XP can - it evidently a skin that Microsoft developed for foreign versions. Problem was this one defaulted to Croatian. Fiddled with the language bar to get it to look mostly like English. I liked the shell so much i kept it, even though in a few programs that have translations it is real hard to figure out the menus. I like the date format the best 26.12.2007.

Now to deal with the license - used keyfinder to insert the proper key into windows, then was off to the Microsoft update site to install 89(!) security updates and such.

While it was busy getting and installing the updates i stuck the bare minimum of stuph on the machine to make it see the things on the net safely.

  • The company gives anyone that asks a Anti Virus CD so installed that. I guess its to help keeping people from getting virus at home and bringing it into work.
  • Installed CounterSPY , simply the best Anti-Spyware protection there is (and it is quite reasonable) - dug through some old Gmail to get the key and got it all happy and registered.
  • Installed TrueCrypt so i could talk to all my thumb drives.
  • Installed TCTEMP to protect the paging and temp files. configured the paging andd printer spool locations. Pays to make the TrueCrypt temp container VERY BIG.
  • Installed Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird to cover the internet and email. Realized that all my blog links were gone - have to remember to back those up somehow. (NOTE to self - set up GMAIL IMAP to my email)
  • Installed Hamachi to let me get to the machine when i am away from home.

If there was only one thing about Thunderbird that I liked, and there is lots to like, it would be that i can have the many different emails in their own folder(s). I have two Gmail accounts WhatIDidWas and my personal one. plus the inevitable one at Comcast and some others depending on what website i am currently working on. That way i can tell who sent what where and try, futilely, to keep my internet stuph organized.

Brewed a new pot of coffee - Christmas had gotten me a stack of flavored coffees so it was walnut vanilla this time.

Back to the installation -
  • I have a fetish about all the stuff people put on my machine when i install something - got to keep that all clean so CCLEANER got installed.
  • To delete files i use Eraser - just because it is easier, two mouse clicks and the file is GONE! No need to clutter up the recycle bin. Eraser will keep the bin mucked out too, and from the context menu to boot. Easy huh?
  • To keep in touch with all my friends i installed Skype, Google Talk, AIM (which is in gmail now BTW), CamFrog, and last but not least MIRC. Got the drivers to my webcam installed.
  • Went to and installed the full suite of things - gives me a complete office installation for whenever that is needed. I know, i could have installed them as apps, but this way all i need do is copy the directory over to a new thumb drive for friends. I also picked up 7ZIP, KeePass and Notepad++.
As an experiment i Copied the PageDefrag into the Program Files and installed it. This keeps the paging file and the registry hives in check. You really,really, don't want you paging file to get fragged - but in this case it will get generated each time(?) because it is in the TrueCrypt Temp Container - but we will see. (Viola it worked - highly recommended.)

This is the bare minimum - I'll be busy getting all the development stuff installed but that is another post....

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