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2006 Feb 06 13:26

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Re: [vox-tech] windows support, unfortunately
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Re: [vox-tech] windows support, unfortunately



On Mon, Feb 06, 2006 at 02:19:39PM -0500, Peter Jay Salzman wrote:
> Hi all,
> 
> At work I have to use WinXP, but all of my development is with open source
> tools like cygwin, miktex, etc., so I'm almost happy.
> 
> This morning a bad thing happened.  Adobe Acrobat wanted to install an
> update 7.0.5 on my work computer, and stupidly, I allowed it.  It wanted to
> reboot to finish the upgrade, and again, I allowed it.
> 
> Unfortunately, after the reboot, my system has become flakey.  Here are some
> manifestations:

<snip>

It's an obvious one, but I'm obliged to ask it: have you tried
/uninstalling/ Acrobat, and if so, did it make a difference? Also, is
your desktop backed-up?

> The reason why I'm posting to vox-tech is that one of the help desk guys
> noted that i have a lot of "illegal software".  this is the term he actually
> used; i'm not making that up.  he was referring to firefox, putty, miktex,
> gvim, cygwin, etc.  he said i have to uninstall the "illegal and unsupported
> software" to "fix the machine".

IMO, this is worth making an issue of. All of these are extremely legal
to have on your machine, and it is worth making the support guy
understand this. Now, some of it /may/ be against company rules: but
since you mentioned that you use cygwin to do development, I sincerely
doubt it.

Beat this into the support guy's head. Actually, a good tactic is to ask
/him/ questions, and make him answer them reasonably. Most answers from
these sorts of people will reveal more questions to ask.

    How, exactly, is Firefox (e.g.) illegal to install?
    How did you learn this (from the answer to previous)?
    What do you think about (appropriate link to strong materials denying
        the truthfulness of his previous answer)?

> I've got a better idea.  I'm going to try to fix whatever is wrong without
> uninstalling my "illegal" software.  Hence, the post to vox-tech.
> 
> First, everything points to the Acrobat upgrade, since that is the only
> thing that occured in between the time the system was good and not good.
> But this hardly matters.
> 
> Any ideas?  Many of the things seem to point towards permissions problems.
> The filesystem is NTFS.  Is there a notion of permissions and file ownership
> on NTFS?  If so, if I didn't have access to read a *.lnk file, would
> explorer tell me the "link is not valid" like I see in point #1 above?

Yes, but it's not quite like Unix. you should be able to access it under
Properties or something: certainly somewhere under the right-click
context menu (sorry: running Linux from work at the moment, so can't
give you better details).

> Many of the problems feel like permissions problems to me.  Could some kind
> of permission problem conceivably cause problem #2 above?

I would think so.

> I don't have the admin password for this computer, but I noticed a utility
> on the web that obtains the admin password on XP machines.  Actually
> *changing* the admin password is out of the question, for obvious reasons.

Actually snooping it may be a bad idea as well. You can certainly get
fired for such activity, and probably jail time, depending on the judge.

If you must use this, make it a last resort. Probably the one right
after attempting to reinstall your system, reinstalling cygwin, etc on
top of a fresh install.

-- 
Micah J. Cowan
micah@cowan.name
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