I Feel a Little Queasy

April 5th, 2006  |  Published in old and busted  |  2 Comments

I really hate dual-booting, but I also hate having a Windows machine sitting in the closet doing nothing for days at a time when I could be sticking Linux on it and using it as a perfectly serviceable backup server or somesuch.

The big irritant is the workplace Web stats package, which won’t work with anything but Internet Explorer. I need to consult it once a week or so just to see where the traffic is coming from. Running a whole Windows machine just to look at one measly (and crappy) stats package is stupid.

Apple’s Boot Camp would seem to be one way to solve the issue:

> Boot Camp lets you install Windows XP without moving your Mac data, though you will need to bring your own copy to the table, as Apple Computer does not sell or support Microsoft Windows.(1) Boot Camp will burn a CD of all the required drivers for Windows so you don’t have to scrounge around the Internet looking for them.

> At startup, hold down the option key (alt) to choose between Mac OS X and Windows.

> Once you’ve completed Boot Camp, simply hold down the option key at startup to choose between Mac OS X and Windows. (That’s the “alt” key for you longtime Windows users.) After starting up, your Mac runs Windows completely natively. Simply restart to come back to Mac.

For a little added hilarity, The Unofficial Apple Weblog enthuses:

> … now, thousands of cubicle workers around the globe can say, “Yes, I can run Windows on my MacBook Pro. I won’t be needing that Dell machine you ordered for me to run the one bit of proprietary Windows-based software that has shackled our company to an expensive spyware and virus-riddled platform for far too long.”

“Thousands … around the globe” seems like about the right headcount. The rest of the soliloquy … well.

As much as I complain about the wild-eyed zealot contingent of the Linux People and their patient, nigh on eschatological, vigil with signs and portents wrapped up in OpenOffice and WINE, they’ve proven one thing:

You can make an alternative OS as easy to install as a greasy rectal suppository and pretty up the dual-boot process to the point there’ll never be getting any lipstick off that mule, and most people will go “Meh” and pick one OS to live in. Dual-booting is seldom a situation anyone’s genuinely happy about.

I’d rather see some sort of virtualization. Bonus would be virtualization with a level of integration akin to the way Apple handled X11 on OS X.

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