Possibly OT: networking under VirtualBox

Liam Proven lproven at gmail.com
Thu Oct 28 17:42:42 UTC 2010

On Thu, Oct 28, 2010 at 6:28 PM, Mark <mhullrich at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Oct 28, 2010 at 10:02 AM, Liam Proven <lproven at gmail.com> wrote:
>> I /was/ going to say, remove all the hardware devices you can in
>> Device Manager, then get it to re-detect them all. Once you've done
>> this & the VM has rebooted a couple of times, install the guest
>> additions. Don't forget to remove the VMware ones.
> Actually, that's a great idea - thanks.  Maybe if I kill the mouse and
> it gets replaced it will work better....
>> But it sounds like you're past that point.
>> However, the best route would be to wipe & reinstall.
> (shudder)
>> The hardware emulated inside a VM is totally different from one
>> hypervisor to another. Your copy of XP is /not/ running on the H/W of
>> the host machine; it is on completely different virtual H/W.
>> Effectively you're moving XP from one PC to another. This /can/ be
>> done but it is pretty much always a bad idea & usually causes
>> problems. If it boots & runs at all, that's a roaring success.
> I've always been rather fond of roaring successes....

Well, OK, but having a half-working system with weird glitches is not pleasant.

I advise wiping & reinstalling all computers periodically. Ideally,
every 6mth, but at least once every 2-3y. With my consultancy hat on,
I constantly see individuals & companies throwing out "old" computers
that are now "too slow". Actually, if they were wiped & reloaded, the
machines would be just fine - it's the accumulated cruft that slows
them down.

Since the Core2 Duo and "Sledgehammer" Athlon64/Opteron chips came
out, CPUs really have not got all that much faster - they just have
more cores now, and very little software really benefits from more
cores. Parallelism is /hard/ and most code is single-threaded. Having
2 cores gives you a slightly more responsive system; more, for most
people, is a waste of electricity & silicon.

People often misunderstand & misquote Moore's Law. It doesn't say
chips double in speed every 18mth. It says the number of transistors
for a given unit of money (& space on the chip) doubles every 18mth.

However, the technology does not exist to spend more transistors on
making processors run code faster, so instead, now, CPU makers just
make the chips able to run /more/ code in unit time, by adding more
cores. This doesn't mean 1 program runs in half the time; it means you
can run 2 (or 3 or 4 or now even 6 for big server chips) programs in
the same time as 1. This is actually no help at all for most purposes.

What this means is that computers stopped getting much faster a few
years ago. Actually, a well-specced 2006 PC, properly set up, is
within 15-20% as quick as a 2010 one, given the same amount of RAM and
so on.

But the 2006 one is full of accumulated cruft. Wipe it & reload with
its original software, it will probably be quite a bit faster than a
modern machine laden down with Win7 & Office '10 (or if you prefer,
compare Ubuntu 6.06 & OpenOffice 2 with Ubuntu 10.04 & OpenOffice

Wiping & reloading is a pain in the *cough* neck, but the pain is
rewarded. It is, as the kiddies say, like, totally worth it.

Liam Proven • Info & profile: http://www.google.com/profiles/lproven
Email: lproven at cix.co.uk • GMail/GoogleTalk/Orkut: lproven at gmail.com
Tel: +44 20-8685-0498 • Cell: +44 7939-087884 • Fax: + 44 870-9151419
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