Welcome to MekTrix 4.0

Aka Shish’s Place of Stuff

Argh Windows, Yay Apple

Time setting up router + xen host, mail, web, file, dhcp/dns, and media servers – 4 hours, of which the majority was just waiting for packages to download. Problems: 0.

Time spent pointing several windows accounts towards file shares, something which should take no more than a couple of seconds per account – 8 hours of continuous pain. Problems: Enough to bring me to the brink of tears.

Some hilights:

  • If you connect to a file share, tick “connect at next log on”, and forget to tick “remember username and password”, then the next time you log on you’ll get a nonspecific error message which is no help at all. If you poke about, you’ll get prompted for a username and password — you can enter them to get access to the share, but in this second prompt, there’s no “remember username and password” option. Thus you have to disconnect the drive and reconnect to it in order to get at the check box.
  • There’s no way to view or edit remembered passwords once they’re set.
  • Trying to connect to two shares on one server with two sets of usernames and passwords doesn’t seem possible.
  • “Disconnect network drive” doesn’t work half the time. The drive is still there claiming a letter and remembering login details, although trying to connect to it gets an error that it doesn’t exist.
  • It really doesn’t want to play with anonymous access shares — it insists on prompting for username and password, and won’t take “anonymous” for an answer. (I had a similar problem before which randomly went away one day, no idea what triggered it)
  • Browsing the network is slow as hell, and locks up the file browser (thus locking up the entire GUI)
  • Whether or not “Network neighbourhood” shows a server seems to be totally random. Turning servers on or off isn’t reflected.
  • Network speed drops to practically nil when the CPU is in use

On the bright side, Mother has an ipod, which I’ve been playing with — as with most apple products, I’ve been immensely impressed with how not only does it work flawlessly, but it works so far above my expectations that I’ve been taking notes for my own software :O

On that note, I’d also like to thank apple for zeroconf; specifically A) making it not suck, and B) making the specs available so that other people’s software can use it. (I’ve been using zeroconf based things on linux for a while, with great joy)

If it didn’t take 10x the memory, 20x the disk space, and 50x the processing power, I’d be tempted to use iTunes instead of foobar…

Update: doing the same thing with the linux desktop (making networked home directories automatically available) took all of 30 seconds — a line in /etc/fstab for each user, “mount -a” to mount all not currently mounted drives, and it worked first time.