Greetings...

MikeRocor

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Hi all,

Not sure how I missed the "Introductions" section yesterday, but I was made to feel welcome anyway - thanks for that.

I've been fooling around with computers, first as a hobby, then professionally, since about 1981 and I've been getting more and more fed up with MS for about half of that time and I keep telling myself, "This is the year I finally completely dump MS Windows for good". But, of course, the business world just keeps eating up the MS line, year after year so I'm pretty much doomed to always have -some- Microsoft taint in my life. In fact, I'm typing this on a 2010 vintage Win7 Pro box that followed me home from work after it retired... Its' not -too- bad though, since I've been tweaking it to my preferences since it was new, and MS stopped "supporting" it a few years ago. :) Horrifyingly, it -did- just pull down 2 updates about a month ago. I use it mostly as a terminal for the Linux boxes and for running one of the few remaining flash games in the browser.

Almost all of my other geekery involves Tiny Core Linux, which I've been using since it first went public back in 2008. I'm running it headless on an HP thin client, on a tower with lots of disk storage for backups (also headless) and on a couple of hand-me-down laptops. Actually, I almost always install linux to be usable headlessly, even on systems that will supposedly never need to be used that way.

I got my feet wet with OpenWRT a month or so ago when I bought a cheap router on clearance and turned it inside-out give several wired-network-only boxes access to the internet via wifi. Running a wire the entire length of the house with pets around just wasn't going to work!

Programming-wise, I'm a C guy who became a MUMPS guy, I do a lot of shell scripting and I used to, in a previous life, "collect" programming languages (anyone want to talk about Forth?)

If I can help anyone with Tiny Core Linux, grub boot loader or general scripting, please don't hesitate to ask.

I'm in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area (USA).

My ferocious looking avatar is actually the BDE (best dog ever), having "gone belly up" for some tummy rubs.
 


My ferocious looking avatar is actually the BDE (best dog ever), having "gone belly up" for some tummy rubs.

I'm glad you explained that :)

Welcome, Mike from DownUnder, and thanks for the offer to help with Tiny Core, we will hold you to it.

Enjoy

Chris Turner
wizardfromoz
 
G'day Mike, Welcome to Linux.org, from another Aussie.
 
Welcome to the Forum.
m0135.gif
 
Three Aussies in first, oi, oi, oi.
 
Welcome to the forums.. From the other side of the pond.
 
Hi and welcome!

I know what it is like to pull Ethernet throughout a house with your dog around to "help." Having CAT6 throughout was worth the effort. Having the tools around to make my own cables to the exact desired length is worth it, too.

Your unhappiness with Microsoft is shared by many of the people here, but not everyone. I am more neutral and tend to see the common functionalities that operating systems perform in general. As we say in our household, "They are the same, only different." :)

There are good helpful people here who know a lot about Linux at many levels. I hope you like it.
 
Welcome aboard! :)
 
Hello @MikeRocor,
Welcome to the Linux.org forum, enjoy!
 
Hi and welcome!

I know what it is like to pull Ethernet throughout a house with your dog around to "help." Having CAT6 throughout was worth the effort. Having the tools around to make my own cables to the exact desired length is worth it, too.

Your unhappiness with Microsoft is shared by many of the people here, but not everyone. I am more neutral and tend to see the common functionalities that operating systems perform in general. As we say in our household, "They are the same, only different." :)

There are good helpful people here who know a lot about Linux at many levels. I hope you like it.
In this case, the dogs "helping" isn't the issue so much as them deciding to -eat- the occasional wire after it's in use. So far I've only (recently) lost one ethernet cable, and a short one at that. And the BDE -did- seem remorseful when I spoke to her about it. But you can't always trust the little b... um... girl dog about these things. ;)

--

My unhappiness with MS in general and Windows in particular are less about basic functionality and more about the attitudes toward users, as made apparent by the products:
  • I try to do something - I'm not allowed. I log in with administrative rights - I'm -still- not allowed. Time to move on.
  • The "registry" consolidates all kinds of settings so you don't have to locate and edit config files. Good luck finding the setting you're looking for in the registry even if you already know what it's called.
  • Every time MS rams a new version down your throat, they change the user interface just enough that you no longer know how to use it. That wouldn't be -so- bad if the UI was changed to account for some new functionality but it almost never is - I suspect it's just because some idiot with a masters in "UX design" thought it would prettier, or cooler or "more marketable".
  • Can't even set up that spiffy new laptop that was just delivered without an internet connection. I'd just as soon install a non-MS firewall and antivirus before connecting a Windows machine to the internet for the first time. I actually gave up on this - because it wasn't -my- machine.

Ima stop grousing now. :)

--

If I ever get around to installing one of the heavier server linuxes (something RHEL-ish, I suppose), I'll probably need to call upon some of the folks here for advice. On the other hand, that's been on my to-do list for a really long time and I'm no closer to actually doing it than I ever was. It would be just for learning and practice and I'm not convinced that non-certificate learning and practice have much of a place on the ole resume'.
 
There aren't a lot of MUMPS folks around anymore - but they still exist and the code still needs to be maintained. Do you write much new code, or just maintain legacy stuff? Also, my understanding is that you can make good money contracting because not a lot of MUMPS folks are still in the job market.

MUMPS is about a decade younger than I am, but we both came from Mass General!
 
The "registry" consolidates all kinds of settings so you don't have to locate and edit config files. Good luck finding the setting you're looking for in the registry even if you already know what it's called.
I feel some of your pain about dealing with a version of Windows later than XP but generally less impressive for us over 40 years old who don't care very well how 64-bit is better than 32-bit. Now I'm seeing with some anxiety that anything 32-bit is being pushed strictly into Pentium camp -- no more 386SX and 486DX and others only capable of running Windows v3.1 over MS-DOS.

On my computer a few years ago with Windows10, I knew something was fouled up, and how things were shaping up to the worse the moment I examined the Windows Registry one day. After I wrote a small batch file and put it as part of a file association, I was shocked to discover how many times it was replicated in that text file of abominations!

That was not all. Discovered the "jump lists" that people dig very much migrating from Windows to a Linux OS with KDE Plasma. Things were running very slow on my system until I found the configuration option to disable those jump lists. It was saving megabytes of useless data, especially documents that existed months ago but no longer in the current.

I tried to run my purchased copy of QuickBASIC v4.5 for MS-DOS but Windows10 refused to deal with any 16-bit software. That would have broken my heart if I did it many years earlier, before I discovered QB64 and Freebasic.

The last straw was "S" mode last year without Internet access, on a new cheap ASUS computer I purchased. And this was before I discovered I needed to create an account on Outlook only to be able to activate Windows. It gave me a strong feeling to wipe it off the moment I found a Linux distro even a trash one. Imagine if the Solus KDE ISO ever booted for me?
 
There aren't a lot of MUMPS folks around anymore - but they still exist and the code still needs to be maintained. Do you write much new code, or just maintain legacy stuff? Also, my understanding is that you can make good money contracting because not a lot of MUMPS folks are still in the job market.

MUMPS is about a decade younger than I am, but we both came from Mass General!
Ooof... you just (carbon) dated yourself... ok, never mind that - it's younger than me, too, and by less than a decade. :eek:

I maintained a bunch of legacy code for over a decade with a little new development thrown in here and there.

Lately I'm just using it for some personal projects and toying with the idea of hacking one tiny facet of the interpreter to make it general purpose scripting language for linux.
 
In this case, the dogs "helping" isn't the issue so much as them deciding to -eat- the occasional wire after it's in use. So far I've only (recently) lost one ethernet cable, and a short one at that. And the BDE -did- seem remorseful when I spoke to her about it. But you can't always trust the little b... um... girl dog about these things. ;)

--

My unhappiness with MS in general and Windows in particular are less about basic functionality and more about the attitudes toward users, as made apparent by the products:
  • I try to do something - I'm not allowed. I log in with administrative rights - I'm -still- not allowed. Time to move on.
  • The "registry" consolidates all kinds of settings so you don't have to locate and edit config files. Good luck finding the setting you're looking for in the registry even if you already know what it's called.
  • Every time MS rams a new version down your throat, they change the user interface just enough that you no longer know how to use it. That wouldn't be -so- bad if the UI was changed to account for some new functionality but it almost never is - I suspect it's just because some idiot with a masters in "UX design" thought it would prettier, or cooler or "more marketable".
  • Can't even set up that spiffy new laptop that was just delivered without an internet connection. I'd just as soon install a non-MS firewall and antivirus before connecting a Windows machine to the internet for the first time. I actually gave up on this - because it wasn't -my- machine.

Ima stop grousing now. :)

--

If I ever get around to installing one of the heavier server linuxes (something RHEL-ish, I suppose), I'll probably need to call upon some of the folks here for advice. On the other hand, that's been on my to-do list for a really long time and I'm no closer to actually doing it than I ever was. It would be just for learning and practice and I'm not convinced that non-certificate learning and practice have much of a place on the ole resume'.
Those complaints about Microsoft match my own experiences. You are 100% right about them, and I dislike them as much as you.

Regarding dogs chewing on cords and cables, give "Grannick's Bitter Apple" a try. You spray it on cables and cords (and rug edges and furniture legs ...).


Sometimes it works and sometimes the dog will be determined to chew no matter what you do, but it is the best solution we have found yet. This is a one- or few- time treatment. The one bottle has latest us many years.

Otherwise, you must cover up, wrap, or otherwise physically shield the cords from the dog, or else rename the dog "Sparky".
 
Ooof... you just (carbon) dated yourself...

Yeah, it's okay. I'm very easy to dox and most regulars know my age. Heck, you can read my profile and someone further doxxed me by wishing me a happy birthday.

I am not even a wee bit concerned. I think a couple of people here might even know my last name. I'd be REALLY easy to find in the real world. Drive into the local village, give someone my first name and mention a car collection, and someone will eventually give you directions to my house. Social engineering at its finest.

Lately I'm just using it for some personal projects and toying with the idea of hacking one tiny facet of the interpreter to make it general purpose scripting language for linux.

Yup. You're a MUMPS developer - by that I mean right out of your mind (in a good way). :D

I'm not entirely shocked that you've done some new work in MUMPS. After all, the place you're working certainly is set up to do so. The idea of maintaining old code (often undocumented and full of band-aids or 'bug fixes' that are horrible hacks) is way too daunting for me. I didn't even want to maintain my own code - and I kinda know what it did!
 
I feel some of your pain about dealing with a version of Windows later than XP but generally less impressive for us over 40 years old who don't care very well how 64-bit is better than 32-bit. Now I'm seeing with some anxiety that anything 32-bit is being pushed strictly into Pentium camp -- no more 386SX and 486DX and others only capable of running Windows v3.1 over MS-DOS.

On my computer a few years ago with Windows10, I knew something was fouled up, and how things were shaping up to the worse the moment I examined the Windows Registry one day. After I wrote a small batch file and put it as part of a file association, I was shocked to discover how many times it was replicated in that text file of abominations!

That was not all. Discovered the "jump lists" that people dig very much migrating from Windows to a Linux OS with KDE Plasma. Things were running very slow on my system until I found the configuration option to disable those jump lists. It was saving megabytes of useless data, especially documents that existed months ago but no longer in the current.

I tried to run my purchased copy of QuickBASIC v4.5 for MS-DOS but Windows10 refused to deal with any 16-bit software. That would have broken my heart if I did it many years earlier, before I discovered QB64 and Freebasic.

The last straw was "S" mode last year without Internet access, on a new cheap ASUS computer I purchased. And this was before I discovered I needed to create an account on Outlook only to be able to activate Windows. It gave me a strong feeling to wipe it off the moment I found a Linux distro even a trash one. Imagine if the Solus KDE ISO ever booted for me?
I recently "inherited" an HP "Stream 11" netbook from my niece. It's in good shape but Windows was fouled up and both the main battery and the CMOS battery were shot, though it still booted when on AC power. I tried to do that handy Windows 10 reset thing and for some reason it wouldn't. I think the "disk" (a 32 GB amc thingy) just didn't have enough room during the reset (and it apparently couldn't use the transflash card for that.

Whatever the cause, I did what I always do. . . I put Tiny Core on it, of course. ;) That was a nice kill-two-birds-with-one-stone operation because Tiny Core 14 was in beta at the time and I wanted to try it out. It worked so nicely I decided to actually spend a couple of dollars and replace the CMOS battery so I wouldn't have to fiddle around with the stupid "secure boot" settings every time I use it. I currently only use it for keeping score in a card game during family game night at my brother's house so I probably won't replace the main battery.

To relate netbooks to QuicbBASIC and such: In the late 1990's, I had a 1992 vintage Gateway "Handbook" (-not- the later '486 one) on which I had installed DOS 5 and pretty much all of the "enterprise grade" PC "productivity" software of the day (or actually of already-bygone days): Lotus 123, dBASE III+, WordPerfect, ProComm Plus, Zortech C++ and, of course, the epsilon programmer's editor. There was some form of BASIC besides the one that came with DOS, but I don't remember if it was Quick BASIC or not - though I'm sure that would have worked. Through the creative use of batch files and PkZip, I managed to stuff all that onto that little 20 MB hard drive, though I could only have one or two of the big "productivity" applications unzipped at any given time. But here's the cool part: while that system was still working, I copied the entire contents of the C: drive to a directory on a desktop PC and I can now run the system, unchanged, in DosBox on linux and everything (that I've tried) still works (with the likely exception of the Zortech C++ compiler because something about 486 and above CPUs breaks the way it does memory allocation). Sadly, or maybe not-so-sadly, I don't have much use for most of that software any more.
 
If I can help anyone with Tiny Core Linux, grub boot loader or general scripting, please don't hesitate to ask.
Thanks in advance. I will.

I had miserable time how to run it full screen in Virtualbox, but I have to refresh my brain first.:(
 
Well, the update from Core 14.0 to Core 15.0 was painless.

I'm looking forward to trying out some of the new wayland shtuff, but I'm still using the regular old Xorg etc. Not even sure yet how that all fits together - I installed one of the wayland apps and when I went to run it said, to paraphrase, "No, dummy, you need to install wayland." Who'd have suspected that? :oops:
 
Yup. You're a MUMPS developer - by that I mean right out of your mind (in a good way). :D

I'm not entirely shocked that you've done some new work in MUMPS. After all, the place you're working certainly is set up to do so. The idea of maintaining old code (often undocumented and full of band-aids or 'bug fixes' that are horrible hacks) is way too daunting for me. I didn't even want to maintain my own code - and I kinda know what it did!
Ha! I just got GT/M 7.1-003 running on Tiny Core 15.0 / x86_64. Now I can run a truly "industrial strength" MUMPS database on a netbook. Everyone who always wanted to do this, please raise your hand. ;)

I haven't fully tested it or even exercised many of its advanced features (which I'll have to do, since the installation process clearly was not designed with Tiny Core in mind, though it's not like I'm planning on running a major worldwide bank or hospital with this) but, after a bit of fiddling around, it does let me log in to a database and write and read some data.

Of course, having achieved this milestone, I also recently discovered that a different MUMPS implementation just happens to already have a feature (the interpreter hack I mentioned above for general scripting) that I wanted to eventually add to GT/M, so just Grrr.
 

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