Daily Archives: May 11, 2008

Mind-numbing!

So that’s how MSIE is an essential core component of Windows, and can’t possibly be removed!

As with any other geek, people expect me to know all about computers, and help them out when something doesn’t work. Never mind that I know nothing about windows, and proceed by trial and error. So, I’ve just been to help a friend get her newly-installed broadband working.

It turned out she was already connected to the ‘net just fine. I popped up a command window, typed in “ping http://www.google.com”, and it worked without hesitation. OK, so where’s the problem? She showed me: she brings up MSIE, and it insists that she’s offline and invites her to connect! Evidently it’s too … ummm … smart to notice that the rest of the operating system all around it is connected. She’d already done the “obvious” thing, and tried setting up a new “broadband” connection in MSIE’s menu.

OK, the menu doesn’t have an option for a regular network connection. So I tried just removing the old dialup connections, whereupon it all worked. Evidently they were standing in the way of MSIE using the network!

Well, I take my hat off to the engineers who designed that. It must take a lot of ingenuity to make things quite so gratuitously difficult. Heath Robinson would be proud of you! And that’s the kind of feature that’ll keep you firmly ahead of Linux, Solaris, MacOS, etc, which “just work” when you attach them to a network, and deprive the user of all that mystery and entertainment.

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