Saturday, July 26, 2008

Microsloth’s Never-Ending Bridge of Despair

When Bill Gates started Microsoft back before the world new about the computer revolution, he was really on the ball.

He had just been turned down by IBM to create their operating system for their new line of home PC’s – the original IBM PC – and decided to go out on his own to see what he could do.

Saying Bill Gates did quite well for himself is a supreme understatement – the man was until recently, the richest person on the planet.

Microsoft’s operating system spread like the wind, and is the most commonly used software globally. When you go out and buy a new computer, you rarely have a choice in what makes it run. Usually, it comes pre-installed with some version of Windows – unless of course you go a completely different route, and get an Apple.

Because of Microsoft’s domination of the operating system market, we’ve come to accept it as it is – bugs and all.

When Microsoft releases software, it really isn’t street-ready – it is often still in the developmental stages. Oh, it will do what it is supposed to, for the most part. Though you may have to curse and swear, as you fiddle with awkward, undocumented settings, or wait until a Windows Update resolves the issue with a “Security Update.”

Most Windows Security Updates include bug fixes, to commonly reported errors in the software. We the customer, provide free quality assurance support to the world’s largest software company. How nice we are!

Which brings me to the point of this rant – I discovered one of those non-documented bugs recently.

I was playing around with my network settings, trying to increase the speed of the network. Through Miscrosoft’s own documentation, I learned you can create a network bridge, between and among different network locations, to combine the bandwidth and in turn increase data flow.

Increased data flow, in theory, should increase the speed of the network. Meaning when I download all those movies I’m supposed to watch in theatres, I’ll actually get the movies faster.

The data flow did increase, and some network activities did speed up. But then I noticed some network activities stopped working altogether.

No longer could I keep my network private and safe from hackers, as network discovery had to be on. And the biggest problem, MSN Live Messenger would load, but couldn’t access the network. So, I couldn’t chat live with my buddies.

I couldn’t figure out why MSN Live Messenger had stopped working. I did what any computer geek does when something that once worked, but now doesn’t – I looked up the error code on Microsoft’s own database.

The error code told me either my Live ID or password were wrong. So, I tried entering both again – several times in fact – but nothing worked. So, I uninstalled the whole MSN Live bundle, and re-installed it from scratch. That’s the true computer geek solution – when all else fails, wipe it clean and re-install.

As soon as MSN Live had re-installed, I was eager to try it – thinking I solved the problem.

Nope – exact same error code, minus a few stressed out hairs on my scalp.

So, I disabled my newly created network bridge – volia – MSN Live Messenger worked once again.

I did a search again in the MSN Live Messenger help system, and on Microsoft’s extensive database – but nothing turned up!

Thanks to me, it’ll probably be resolved in the next Windows Update – but do I get anything for all my trouble. Nadda, nothing, no way!

No wonder Bill Gates is so stinkin’ rich.

1 comment:

  1. So if computer geek means that you can figure all this stuff out, then what is the term that refers to someone who wouldn't be able to figure it out...but can understand it when a computer geek blogs about it?

    Would that be just computer literate?