Subtle Coolness · chrono index · alpha index

Ah, the Life of a Proctor (Part the Second)

by William Jackson on 2005-02-11

This afternoon I was in heaven. I was reinstalling Windows XP on twodifferent computers simultaneously. Ah, bliss. Aaronʼs laptop finallycaught enough ad/spyware to warrant a complete wipe, and I am repairingthe computer of a friend from my French class last semester. Iʼve workedon that computer before.

Aaron had asked about a complete reinstall a few months ago, but I washesitant because I had never done a laptop before. I had no idea ifWindows XP came with all the necessary drivers for all that integratedstuff, so I decided to do the prudent thing and hold out. Well, Aaronʼscomputer was nigh unusable, so holding-out days were over.

Of course, complications abounded. First, I was going to transferAaronʼs documents to my computer over the network, but one of thesymptoms his lappy was experiencing was a profound inability to open“My Computer”. So, I had to figure out how to make the transfer usingonly the command line. Google saved my reputation once again and Iscored with:

```Microsoft Windows XP [Version 5.1.2600] (C) Copyright 1985-2001 Microsoft Corp.

C:\>cd "\Documents and Settings\Aaron"

C:\Documents and Settings\Aaron>net use x: \legolas\shared The command completed successfully.

C:\Documents and Settings\Aaron>xcopy /e "My Documents" x:


xxx File(s) copied

C:\>exit ```

With all of Aaronʼs files safely backed up on my own computer, he poppedin the Windows XP CD and booted the computer into the setup program. Atfirst I was telling him what to do, but after a while he thought itwould make more sense if I just did the typing myself. I was sure to lethim know exactly when his entire hard drive was about to be wiped.

While Aaronʼs computer was being assimilated by Windows XP, I took alook at the other machine. The owner wanted me to save the music fileson it if I could, but it wasnʼt necessary. It wouldnʼt boot normally. Itwouldnʼt boot into “Safe Mode with Networking”. I got it to boot intoplain old “Safe Mode”, but I had no way of getting the files off. Iwanted to copy them over the network as I had done Aaronʼs, but thereʼsno network in “Safe Mode”, unless you can get “Safe Mode withNetworking” to work, which I could not do. I decided the files werelost, and started the reinstallation procedure.

Several tens of minutes later, Aaron is at the Windows desktop on hislappy and puts his driver CD in. Of course, one would expect to finddrivers for the computerʼs hardware on the driver CD that came with thecomputer. Such was not the case. Itʼs a good thing there was anothercomputer available that was connect to the Internet (namely, mine). Idownloaded drivers for his network adapter, burned them onto a CD andinstalled them on his computer. He was then able to get online himselfand download any other drivers his computed needed.

All this while, XP setup has frozen twice on my friendʼs computer, thesame place each time. I assumed it had something to do with the networkadapters because it was freezing during the network setup part, so Iremoved the internal wireless card and tried again, with success.

Aaron left for work, but not before I asked if I could install ServicePack 2 while he was gone. I was sitting comfortably in his swivel chairwhen my phone rang. Someone was calling from the SMF.

Now why would someone be calling me from the … crap. Iʼm scheduledto work at 15:00. Itʼs 15:05 right now. Crap.

I quickly collected my effects, and left both computers installingstuff.

So, I was late to work because I was having such a good time installingWindows XP on two different computers simultaneously.