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Daynotes Journal

Week of 3 April 2000

Friday, 05 July 2002 08:16

A (mostly) daily journal of the trials, tribulations, and random observations of Robert Bruce Thompson, a writer of computer books.


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Monday, 3 April 2000

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The furor over Rambus RDRAM continues. Tom's Hardware posted an interesting follow-up article, Rambus Revisited, which rebuts challenges made to their original Dissecting Rambus article. I have to say that I'm in agreement with what Tom's Hardware has to say on Rambus, but then I declared RDRAM a dead product almost a year ago. It's a bad technology, and it seems that Rambus is now taking the route often taken by those who can't compete in the market by competing in the court room. Rambus has sued Hitachi, claiming that Hitachi is infringing Rambus patents. Hitachi has counter-sued, claiming that Rambus patented technology that had been shared by JEDEC members while Rambus was a member of that body. I hope Hitachi thrashes Rambus in court.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Jerry Mah [mailto:jmah@zdnetonebox.com]
Sent: Monday, April 03, 2000 3:44 AM
To: webmaster@ttgnet.com
Subject: Single Disk Routers

Bob-

I noticed your interest in some single disk linux distributions. Here is a link to a list of single to 3 or 4 floppy disk linux based router or otherwise.

It's pretty complete, and contains a lot of links I didn't know existed.

Thanks.

 


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Tuesday, 4 April 2000

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Well, to no one's surprise, Jackson savaged Microsoft. I've read all the publicly available documents on the case, and I can't see that Microsoft has done anything wrong at all. But that doesn't matter anymore. The tobacco companies haven't done anything wrong, either, and that hasn't saved them. Nowadays, the government can simply choose a big company with deep pockets and go after it, with the states' attorneys general circling like a bunch of vultures. This is all about money, and ultimately about power. The big companies have it, the government wants it, and the government knows that big companies will find few defenders among the people. So they're easy targets. And where does all the money for huge settlements come from? Our pockets, of course.

Microsoft isn't the only loser here, folks. We all lost. Government is never your friend.

 


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Wednesday, 5 April 2000

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Barbara is off to a conference in Washington, DC. I just helped her load her luggage and she drove away, leaving me with Mom and the dogs. Tonight, we'll be having doughnuts for dinner. Tomorrow, we'll be having popcorn for dinner. I haven't done any meal planning beyond that, although I'm tentatively considering ice cream for dinner the following night. We'll see.

I have to remember to feed the dogs, too. Barbara buys separate dog food for each of them. Fat-dog Chow for Kerry, Dog Chow Lite for Duncan, and Puppy Chow for Malcolm. Well, actually, it's not *-Chow. I think that's a Ralston-Purina trademark, and she buys premium food for them. She feeds each of them in his own stainless steel bowl and uses a new bowl for each of them each day. 

We'll be shifting to the male method this week. One bowl for the week, all dogs share one bowl, and all dog food is mixed together. They love to eat each others' food anyway.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Alberto_Lopez@toyota.com [mailto:Alberto_Lopez@toyota.com]
Sent: Tuesday, April 04, 2000 12:08 PM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: Fatal Exception Errors and IllegalOps/Invalid Page Faults

Robert,

Help... Please.

I recently (this last weekend) built a PC for a family member. Now before you go on about the horrors of using Win9x, this is a very "non technical" user who would be much more comfortable with the "consumer" version of Windows rather than with NT WS... :>)

Well, the specs for the system are as follows:

BCM IN5340 Motherboard, AMD K-6 500mhz CPU, 96 MB of PC-100 RAM (1 32MB DIMM and 1 64MB DIMM), on-board sound and video, 20 GB IBM Ultra-ATA HD, 48X generic CD-ROM, Linksys 10/100 NIC, Generic Floppy, Generic Internal 56K modem. PS/2 Ms Natural Keyboard and PS/2 MS Optical Intelligent Mouse

The building of the PC itself was uneventful. I installed Windows 98 SE, Office 2000 premium, AOL 5, Norton SystemWorks, Norton AV 2000, and all of the MSIE 5 Windows Updates available from the MS Windows Update Site.

This was all done at my office.

Upon delivering the PC to the end-user, I installed it, powered it up, and upon initial boot-up was confronted by a message telling me that the Office 2000 install was CORRUPT. I had 2 options: REPAIR the Install or Uninstall it. Well, I un-installed it, figuring that a FRESH install would be better than a REPAIR.

Ever since then, The PC has refused to work correctly.

I have been confronted by a never ending series of BSOD (Blues Screens...) giving me Fatal Exception OE 0028:C005338 in VXD VMM(01)+00004338. When I mange to get to the actual Windows Desktop, nearly every operation I try (opening windows, Desktop Properties, Control Panel, etc.) I get numerous Illegal Operations and Invalid Page faults (mostly in KERNEL32.DLL) caused by Windows Explorer and most other programs.

Needless to say, the PC itself is VERY UNSTABLE. to the point of being virtually unusable.

I have tried the following:

1.- Scrape the HD down to BARE METAL (with Partition Magic 5.0) and start over. 

2.- Remove all attached hardware except for Video, and keyboard 

3.- Remove 1 DIMM and then the other

SAME RESULT. BSOD's and Invalid Page faults and Illegal Ops.

I am at my wit's end. About the only thing I have left is to try and replace the IDE cables, as the errors seem to occur when the HD is accessed.

My questions to you are:

1.- Could a BAD IDE cable cause these sorts of problems, or would the PC refuse to boot if the cable was bad? 

2.- What other kind of HARDWARE CONFLICT could be causing this types of numerous, very frequent Windows errors?

I'd really appreciate any wisdom you could send this way!!!

Thanks fir the WONDERFUL Web Site!

Alberto S. Lopez 
alberto_lopez@toyota.com
(work)
albertol@pacbell.net
(home)

Your problems could be caused by any number of things. First guess, power supply. Second guess, memory. Third guess, motherboard (although I'm not familiar with the brand name and, if it's not a high-quality motherboard, that could raise this to two or even one). Bad IDE cables are also a possibility, although a less likely cause. They're easy enough to swap out, which should probably be your first step if you have some known-good ones available. Also, you don't mention whether the hard disk is an ATA/66 model. If it is, that may be the problem. Some motherboard ATA/66 interfaces have horrendous problems. Most ATA/66 drive makers have a utility available that forces the drive to operate as an ATA/33 drive. That may be worth a try. Readers may have other ideas.

 


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Thursday, 6 April 2000

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I've spent an hour this morning trying to recover from an Outlook 2000 problem. The first sign something was wrong came yesterday when a couple of return receipts arrived. I just happened to have Outlook maximized at the time, and watched the return receipts arrive in my inbox. Ordinarily, an Outlook rule grabs those and moves them to my Receipts folder. This time, it did the move (the Receipts folder turned bold and had a number 2 next to it), but instead of deleting those messages from the inbox, Outlook GPFd.

I killed the Dr. Watson dialog, waited a few seconds, and re-started Outlook. Everything appeared normal, except that the two receipts were still in my inbox. I deleted them, did an Exit and Log Off from Outlook, and it hung. It displayed the small exit dialog that normally appears for only a couple seconds for several minutes. At first I thought that I'd exited just when Outlook was retrieving mail and that perhaps it was in the process of downloading a large message. I looked at the temp directory to see if there was a large message download in progress, but there wasn't. After giving it another 15 minutes or so to exit on its own, I finally fired up Task Manager and killed the process. I then immediately restarted Outlook and everything appeared normal. I was able to Exit and Log Off normally.

This morning, as usual, I fired up Outlook on my way to let the dogs out and so forth. When I finished reading the paper and came back into my office, I had 112 new messages in my inbox. That's an extraordinarily high number, because I filter mailing list messages, return receipts, junk mail, and so on into dedicated folders. Ordinarily, I'd expect to have perhaps a dozen or two new messages in my inbox, most or all of which would be actual personal messages sent to me.

As I cruised through my inbox, it quickly became obvious that most (but not all) of my Outlook Rules were broken. There were two or three dozen return receipts, a bunch of listserv mail, and so on in my inbox. I check the Rules Wizard, and found that most of my rules had indeed been turned off. What's worse, they'd been modified to remove the folders specified in the rules. Okay, I went in and fixed the individual rules to point again to the correct folders, and told each rule to run itself against mail already in the inbox. That cleared out a lot of the stuff, but there were still messages in my inbox that should have been filtered, so it was obvious that I'd missed fixing a couple of rules. I went back into Rules Wizard, and found that all of the originally broken rules were broken again. 

At that point, I decided to exit Outlook, which I'm beginning to think of as "LookOut", and so did an Exit and Log Off. Outlook hung again. Eventually I killed the application with Task Manager, but when I attempted to run Scanpst.exe to check my .pst file, it refused to run, claiming that some other process had my mail file locked. I found that the MAPI module and Outlook.exe were still showing as active processes. I killed those processes individually and re-ran Scanpst.exe, which said that my pst file had only minor errors. I fixed those and restarted the system. When it came up, I ran Outlook again, and fixed the rules again. This time, things appear to be fixed properly. I'm able to exit Outlook normally, and my rules don't disappear. It seems that Outlook can confuse itself beyond redemption. At least a re-start cured the problem, and Outlook has never actually lost any of my data.

Netscape has finally put their long-awaited version 6.0 up on their ftp servers. I was about to download it yesterday when messages started coming in from people who had already downloaded and tried it. The consensus seems to be that it's a dog--slow, poor rendering, buggy, and unstable--so I didn't bother downloading it.

I saw an article in The Register this morning that concerns me greatly. A man was arrested who had, as far as I can see, committed no crime. The police mounted a sting operation, with a policewoman pretending to be the mother of two girls, aged 12 and 14, who were available for sex with this man. I don't have a great deal of sympathy for a middle-aged man who goes looking for young girls to have sex with, but that's not the point. In the first place, he was entrapped. By long-standing convention, rooted in common law, the police cannot encourage someone to commit a crime and then arrest him for committing that crime. Even more important, what crime did he commit? He didn't have sex with these non-existent girls. He simply got on a plane and went to visit the "mother". They arrested him when he stepped off the plane. What crime did he commit?

We who belong to the loose confederation of daily journal keepers have a back-channel mailing list that occasionally has some pretty interesting threads on it. I posted the following message to this mailing list yesterday, and thought that some of the responses might be of general interest.

It struck me yesterday that if I wait until I have time to work with Linux I'll never get started, so I decided I'd best just jump in and do something. At this point, I'm thinking I need three Linux boxes, one simple one for a firewall/proxy/router, one for a server, and one for a workstation. I have a couple of boxes that are serious Linux candidates:

1. An old Gateway 2000 Pentium/133 with a 3.1 GB IDE hard disk, 64 MB memory, a 3Com 10BaseT card, and a Seagate TR-4 tape drive. I'm thinking about cleaning this one up, pulling the tape drive, adding an Intel 10/100 Ethernet card as the second NIC, and making it the firewall/proxy/router. If I ever bring up a local world-accessible web server, I'd also put it on this box. Is a Pentium/133 and 64 MB adequate for this?

2. A Dell Pentium/200 with a 6.1 GB IDE hard disk, 64 MB of RAM, an Adaptec 2920 SCSI host adapter, and an Onstream 15/30 GB IDE tape drive. I'm thinking about pulling the Adaptec 2920, adding 15 or 20 GB of IDE hard disk, and making this my Linux server. Onstream has Linux drivers, so I'd probably leave the tape drive in and use it for routine backups. Basically, this box would be a file/print server (running Samba), and would also run routine network services. If I bring up a local mail server like HP OpenMail, I'd probably put it on this box. Is all of this reasonable, or do I need more hardware?

As far as the third box, that'd be for using Linux as a workstation OS, so I'd plan on giving it something decent to run on. I have an Intel BI440ZX motherboard (Socket 370, Celeron only). If I pop in a Celeron/400 or /433, 128 MB of memory, some kind of AGP video card (I assume that Linux supports AGP), a 10 GB IDE hard disk, and perhaps the Seagate 4/8 GB TR-4 tape drive, will that be a reasonable configuration for running a Linux workstation?

Any and all comments welcome.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: bilbrey@pacbell.net [mailto:bilbrey@pacbell.net]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 10:01 AM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: Re: Looking for Linux advice

The short answer is yes, fine, to all of the above. Recommendations include using different mfg nics in your multi-homed box (easier to tell them apart for configuration purposes), I have a 3c905B and a Kingston NE2000 clone. Re: Video, check [here] and [here] before making a video card selection. If you have 10 video cards at home, and you aren't buying the hottest latest tv-tuner 64M frame buffer 4x AGP card for playing Quake 3000 live with Regis Philbin, then probably all of them will work fine with recent distributions.

FYI, I am currently using Mandrake as prime for all purposes. I have 6.1 running the web/file/backup/firewall server and 7.02 running dual boot workstations both here and at work. If you want, I'll burn you a couple of CDROMS. Let me know.

.b

-- 
Brian P. Bilbrey "I have a cunning plan, my lord..." 
bilbrey@pacbell.net "Shut up, Baldrick!"
www.orbdesigns.com E. Blackadder

Thanks. I have several cards on that list, so video shouldn't be a problem. For various reasons, I think I'll stick with Red Hat 6.1 for now, although it's tempting to go to Mandrake so that I'd always have you to bug. Of course, I suppose there's nothing to prevent me from trying several flavors, but I think I'll wait and do that once I have a bit more ability to appreciate the differences.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Brian Bilbrey [mailto:bilbrey@pacbell.net]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 10:50 AM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: Re: Looking for Linux advice

RH6.1 has some bugs in the install routine - pick up 6.2 from lsl or cheapbytes, more recent x stuff and a couple of kernel revisions further up the food chain.

lsl - [here
cheapbytes - [here]

And of course you can still ask - Mandrake is about 99 % RH with some whizzy stuff on top - mandrake also feels more *solid* to me than the equivalent RH release.

Hmm. I think I remember reading about the 6.1 installer problems somewhere, perhaps on your site. I think I also may have been bitten by them. I tried a month or two back to install RH 6.1 on the Gateway Pentium/133 and couldn't get past the point where it was trying to install video for x. I was rather surprised at the problem getting the video card configured, given that it was a Matrox Millennium PCI, which is about as standard a card as I can imagine. Perhaps I should give Mandrake a try.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Chris Ward-Johnson [mailto:chriswj@mostxlnt.co.uk]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 11:05 AM
To: 'thompson@ttgnet.com'
Cc: Daynoters (E-mail)
Subject: RE: Looking for Linux advice

I'm at the same Linux level as yourself and doing some very similar things at Chateau Keyboard. The only point I have to this list is that I've been getting mails from readers having problems getting their AGP cards recognised on install of both the Red Hat and Corel distributions. There's a hardware compatibility list up [here] for Corel, which I guess must be similar to other distributions.

Chris Ward-Johnson
Chateau Keyboard - Computing at the Eating Edge
http://www.chateaukeyboard.com

Is it a coincidence that all of us seem to have decided to start playing with Linux? I don't think anyone else's plans have influenced me, and although I know I've mentioned that I intended to start playing with Linux at some point, I doubt that my plans have influenced anyone else. It seems that everyone just more or less at the same time decided to start with Linux. Granted, some like Moshe Bar and Brian Bilbrey have been at it for months or even years, and others like Tom Syroid jumped in seriously a month or two ago, but it does seem interesting that so many of us have all of a sudden started to get serious about Linux. A few minutes after I sent that message this morning I checked Bob Walder's page and found that he'd posted part of my message and announced that he was getting serious about Linux as of today. This can't be good for Microsoft.

As far as the problems with Red Hat and Corel recognizing AGP cards, I can tell you from experience that Red Hat 6.1 didn't much care for a Matrox Millennium PCI either, so perhaps the situation is worse than just an AGP problem.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Matt Beland [mailto:mbeland@zanova.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 11:20 AM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com; gang@daynotes.com
Subject: RE: Looking for Linux advice

My $.02...

The router/firewall is more than plenty; the minimum I'd use for a router after talking to a bunch of people is a 486/25 with 8 MB of RAM. Even as a web server, that machine you have is plenty. Mine at home is only a 166, and it even runs X when I want it to. (Never, but still...)

The server machine should also be fine for file/print tasks and backups.

As for the workstation; my Linux box is a 400 MHz PII with 128 MB of RAM, and it's great. No problems at all. I have heard a lot of people complaining they can't get their AGP to work properly, so if you have one lying around I'd use a PCI video card. I have a Permedia2 card in mine, and it runs XWindows at 1600x1200 and too many colors to count. Looks as good as my W2K workstation with the 32 MB AGP Viper 770 card.

Matt Beland
Systems Administrator
Zanova Inc.
 http://www.zanovainc.com
(480) 421-1283
"Do not meddle in the affairs of SysAdmins, for they are quick to anger, and lack subtlety."

Thanks. I have a bunch of PCI video cards floating around, so I guess I can just do YALI until I find one that works.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Bowman, Dan [mailto:dbowman@americanambulance.net]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 12:10 PM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com; gang@daynotes.com
Subject: RE: Looking for Linux advice

Hi Bob,

From my somewhat limited experience, you have plenty of horsepower. Both Corel and RedHat came up fine on a P-75 with 32mb (16 wouldn't cut it with X); they ran slow but that was expected (and the firewall may end up on that machine). Swapping to a P-200 with 64mb made for a real reasonable testbed. Caldera loaded fine on the P-120 laptop and may stay there.

Two caveats: video cards and memory. Neither Corel or RedHat liked the Diamond SE card in the donated P-75; the next level up in their PCI line worked fine. Caldera has the best of the video probes of the distros I've tried; it was the only one that would work on the laptop's chip set. (If I knew what to tweak, they'd all work; but I'm a lazy Windows user and I'm used to the installers doing it all for me <g>.)

Memory: from my reading it seems imperative that you commit to your memory config before you install as the swap partition is matched to it. Upgrading later means a new install.

Notes from the front: Corel's a head-bump install. Caldera is a learning install; Mandrake 7 kicks tail. If your distro understands RPMs, you don't have to know very much to install additional tools.

Come on in; the water's fine (albeit a little cold, to placate the penguins),

Thanks. As far as memory, that's no problem. Both the Gateway Pentium/133 and the Dell Pentium/200 are effectively maxed out at 64 MB right now, because they use the 430VX chipset. I suppose I could install more, but it wouldn't be cached, so I don't see any point to it. Thanks for the penguin reminder. Now I suppose I'll have to come up with a bunch of penguin-related host names. I suppose forsteri would be a pretty good host name for the big dual-CPU box I'll eventually build, and demersus isn't a bad host name, but patagonicus, schlegeli, and chrysolophus seem a bit outre.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Dave Farquhar [mailto:farquhar@lcms.org]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 12:51 PM
To: Bowman, Dan
Cc: gang@daynotes.com; thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: RE: FWD: Looking for Linux advice

Thanks to Dan for forwarding this to me at work.

The P133 is more than enough for firewall/proxy/router, and for light-duty Web serving, it's plenty. By light-duty, I mean Daynotes-style Web serving (Pournelle excepted, in all likelihood). I run my firewall/proxy/router on a 66 MHz 486 with 24 MB RAM. I ran my Web server on a P120 with 32 MB RAM until that freak SuSE accident, where I accidentally wiped out the drive. I haven't set Apache back up since then, but will soon.

The server looks more than adequate, and the Celeron board would make for a hot workstation, depending on the graphics card you put in it. I've always liked nVidia-based cards under Linux.

P133s and P200s are good for this--since they run on a 66 MHz bus you don't have to deal with a crippled PCI bus. But I used what I had available, and even though it's less than ideal, for what I do and want to do in the near future, it's been fine.

As you suspect, the workstation requirements are the most severe. Since servers spend most, if not all of their time running low-overhead text mode, you mostly need efficient network and disk subsystems, enough CPU power to keep up with those subsystems, and enough RAM to keep from having to rely too much on virtual memory.

This all looks good for getting started. You may find at some point that you outgrow it, but I'd be surprised, and Moore's Law is definitely on your side.

Yes, I was really just looking to get started cheaply. If I get serious, I'd probably convert the ad hoc workstation into the server, swap the IDE drive for a Seagate U2W Barracuda, and perhaps expand the memory from 128 to 256 MB if that seemed needful. I'd then build a new personal workstation around a dual-CPU board with a couple of Pentium III/600 or /700 processors, 256 MB or 384 MB of RAM, and probably a Seagate U2W Cheetah disk drive. In fact, I might just convert my current main workstation to Linux. It already has dual Pentium III/550's, 256 MB, and a Cheetah. But I'd have to get comfortable with using Linux as my main workstation OS first, and that's liable to take a while.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Moshe Bar [mailto:moshe@moelabs.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 1:10 PM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: RE: Looking for Linux advice

Hi Robert

Your hardware seems OK for what you plan to do. AGP support as of kernels 2.2.x is still a bit shaky at best. If you go with XFree4.0 and kernels 2.3.99pre or 2.4 when it comes out, you should be just fine.

I am not sure why you would want to put HP OpenMail on your server. If anything, why not go with qmail or smail? Obviously, the sendmail 8.9.x comign with most distros is just as good.

Good luck!

Thanks. As far as why I'd install HP OpenMail rather than sendmail, it's because I'm a wimp. The OpenMail installation procedure supposedly configures sendmail for you automagically, which is no small advantage for me. Also, I'd kind of like to have a pseudo-Exchange Server running locally. 

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Brian Bilbrey [mailto:bilbrey@pacbell.net]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 3:23 PM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: Re: Looking for Linux advice

The following will be helpful should you decide to take the RH route, forgot about it until enough caffeine had penetrated...

[here]

Thanks. Hmm. The more I think about this, the more I think I may take you up on your kind offer to send me Mandrake. I wish I wasn't throughput-challenged. Someday, that may change.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: J.H. Ricketson [mailto:JHR@WarlockLtd.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 7:15 PM
To: gang@daynotes.com
Subject: Looking for Linux advice

Dear Bob,

Sorry - my advice in this area would be counterproductive<G>.

However, I have a question only you can answer: Why? Is it because, as a professional in the field you need the hands-on knowledge of Linux, or is it to fulfill a perceived need that Wintel will not, or does the idea strike your fancy? You say, in effect, "I'm going Linux." That's like me saying "I'm going shopping for a Humvee." I think in my case at least a few people would want to know why: I might have a definite need for it on an upcoming tour of Alaska, or, at the other end of the spectrum, I might see a Humvee as a really kewel commute vehicle, even better than a Bimmer.

Without being argumentative, I really want to know why Bob Thompson is willing to make an investment of his finite and quite valuable time to go Linux? What is your payoff? I think I may be missing something here. Your answer would be particularly valuable to me, and perhaps to others, as I do not see you as any kind of a zealot (except for BCs!) TIA

Regards,

JHR 
--

[JHR, for The Warlock]
jhr@warlockltd.com

Dawn is natures way of saying it's bedtime.

Good question. The answer is that I write computer books for a living. Linux is already a major player, and destined to become more so. One must keep up with current trends if one expects to write books that people will buy. As I've said repeatedly, I don't think Linux is a threat to Microsoft on the desktop right now, and probably won't become one for another year or two. It will eventually happen, though. 

Server space is different. Depending on whose figures you believe, there were about as many new Linux server installations last year as new NT installations. And, no, that doesn't count the kind of Linux server installations we're discussing. That's serious, corporate, back-office Linux installations. I believe those estimates are accurate, because I have many friends who are IS Directors and so on. What I hear from them is that Linux is arriving in their shops in serious numbers, and being used for production, line-of-business purposes.

This reminds me very much of what NT did to NetWare. When NT 3.1 shipped, all the NetWare folks laughed it off, if they even noticed it. NetWare held literally 95% of the network seats, and no one saw NT as any kind of credible threat. Well, NT has now made NetWare a niche product, which currently survives only by continuing to harvest its installed base. That despite the fact that NetWare has always been and remains a better NOS than NT for most purposes.

I think Linux may well do the same thing to NT that NT did to NetWare. NetWare never recovered from shipping 4.0, which was an entirely new operating system. No one understood NDS, and converting from NetWare 3.1X to 4.0 was by no means a simple upgrade. Since people were considering what amounted to installing a new NOS anyway, they looked at both NetWare 4.0 and NT, and chose NT in increasingly large numbers. Now Microsoft finds themselves in a similar position. NT5 is not a simple upgrade from NT4. It's an entirely new operating system, and no one understands ADS. Worse still, Microsoft shipped Windows 2000 Server in what amounts to alpha form. W2KP is reasonably complete, although I still consider it a beta, but W2KS is in no way ready for prime time. That leaves the door open for Linux, and I suspect that Microsoft will have cause to regret that.

My guess is that in 3 years, Linux will be dominant in server space, particularly if just a few things come together (like Novell shipping NDS for Linux). Microsoft may well find that Windows 2000 Server is a niche product by then. So it makes sense for me to learn about Linux early.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Dave Farquhar [mailto:farquhar@access2k1.net]
Sent: Thursday, April 06, 2000 2:00 AM
To: gang@daynotes.com
Subject: Re: Looking for Linux advice

I don't really mean to pre-empt Bob, but, with all due respect, I got a chance to respond first. :)

The first question is, which of Bob's fields? As an author, it makes perfect sense to get familiarity with Linux because that's where the books are. About once a month I get a phone call from my agent: "Dave, I've got 12 Linux books I need to find writers for. You interested in any of them?" With all due respect to my peers writing Linux books, if you can write a compound sentence and your eyes don't glaze over when you hear the words "type 'ls'," you can get a deal writing a Linux book. That's an indication both of how big the market is and how short the field is of authors.

As a consultant, it also makes good sense. Windows NT doesn't make sense for a small business when you can soup up a P133 with a nice SCSI subsystem and a fast NIC, then install Linux and Samba to serve your Windows boxes, a firewall to protect your LAN (Linux makes a great firewall--I can tell you exactly who tries to hack into my network, when, and what he's trying to do), Apache for Web serving and HP OpenMail for a mail server that integrates nicely with Outlook, and pay $100 for the software and $800 for a consultant to set it up. You pay once, then you can pretty much forget about it. The system will go until the box dies. You absolutely, can't say that for NT or W2K. You'll at least have to pay the consultant to come out again every six months to apply the service packs. A semi-permanent solution for less than the W2K software alone would cost is very attractive.

As more and more people start presenting Linux in that light, expect it to only gain momentum. Having done consulting for small businesses, I know how penny-conscious they can be. A business who's willing to assemble preconfigured servers set up in a similar fashion to what I described and sell them cheaply (adding, say, $400 to the price of the hardware for the software configuration, then spend an hour onsite tuning it to their network) has a license to print money.

Linux doesn't have to win the desktop. It's perfectly poised to win the back room, thanks to its low price, reliability and security.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Alberto_Lopez@toyota.com [mailto:Alberto_Lopez@toyota.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2000 10:41 AM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: RE: Fatal Exception Errors and IllegalOps/Invalid Page Faults

Robert,

Good Morning...

Thanks so very much for getting back to me.

I have resolved the problem.

I went back to PC Club where I bought the parts and told them what was happening. I then took the PC over to them and as soon as the technician took one look at the PC, he immediately stated that the CPU FAN was the wrong one for this CPU (AMD K-6 500).

He stated that some fans are only rated for CPU's up to 300 Mhz and other, higher quality BALL BEARING Fans are better for faster CPU's.

In any case, he replaced the FAN on the CPU and rebooted. The PC has been running perfectly ever since. Nary a BSOD or Illegal Ops/Invalid Page fault to be seen.

LESSON LEARNED: If your PC starts flaking out with RANDOM error messages and BSOD's and you replace the memory, an OVERHEATING CPU is a likely culprit...

Again, thanks much for responding to my plea for help and please keep up the Site. I find it an invaluable resource for PC Technology insights, news and other related matters...

Alberto S. Lopez Torrance, CA
Alberto_Lopez@toyota.com

I don't know why I failed to mention heat, especially since I recently had some heat problems with one of my own systems that exhibited similar symptoms. Glad you got it fixed. I've never used cheap CPU cooling devices, but I'm not surprised that using one can cause a CPU to overheat. I use mostly retail-boxed Intel CPUs, which come with adequate heat sinks and cooling fans in the box. Otherwise, I use only cooling devices made by PC Power & Cooling, with which I've never had a problem. The system I had overheating had so much stuff in it that the ambient air temperature was more than 40C, so it wasn't really the fan's fault.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Nathan Johnson [mailto:redearth@excelonline.com]
Sent: Thursday, April 06, 2000 3:04 AM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: Win2000 question

Hi there just read your article, good step by step tutorial! I was just wondering if you could help me out for a moment. I bought a new computer pre loaded with Windows2KP for the purpose of working in a dual processor enviroment with Graphics programs such as 3D studio, photoshop, Illistrator etc. 

Well when I started to finish the install (admin password), W2KP would not accept the password I had chosen thus I was locked out. I then tried hundreds of combinations with no avail. The customer service from the company I bought from would give no support on how to reinstall so I was on my own. So I rebooted with the W2KP CD they gave me and opted to formatt the main partiton. There was 2 partitons, one at 8megs and the other at 14.5 GB. (out of 15.3 GB hard drive) Setup wouldnt let me partion the main section so intalled windows on the 14.5 Gig partition. From here I finished setup and was able to access windows. 

When I finished setting up the internet explorer settings and then was online for a while, I closed out of i.explored and the machine locked up. I couldnt even shut it down with Ctrl+ Alt+Del properties. This happens every time like clock work. Oultlook express will not bring mail in or send out, even though all the settings are correct. While on the internet i.exporer sometimes locks up and thus I have to go as far and unpugging the beast. Its hard to find any help out there with this, that that is available is expensive. Id would be overjoyed to hear from you, any help would much appreciated. Thank you 

Nathan t Redearth

redearth@bigsky.net
or
redearth@excelonline.com

Well, that sounds inexcusable. If it were me, I'd probably haul the machine back, demand a refund, and then go buy something else. I don't really have much experience with Windows 2000 Professional as yet, but perhaps one of my readers will be able to suggest something.

 


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Friday, 7 April 2000

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Well, the wheels haven't come off yet, although they're starting to wobble. I had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner last night. I'm not sure what's on the menu for tonight. Perhaps Colonel Chicken, or I could order a pizza. And there's always Chinese takeout. Fortunately, Barbara will be home late Sunday or Monday.

I've finished some exhaustive benchmark testing on several Intel motherboards, with Pentium III processors running the gamut from the slowest available to 800 MHz. I won't post the full benchmark results, because they take up pages and pages. But I will post the following results, which show the results at the only common speed across the board, 600 MHz. Incidentally, all of these figures result from running the benchmarks seven times, discarding the highest and lowest results, and averaging the remaining five.

I tested the CA810E (with SDRAM), the Cape Cod CC820 (with SDRAM), the Vancouver VC820 (with Rambus RDRAM), and the old reliable Seattle II SE440BX2V (with SDRAM). All were tested with 64 MB of memory, because Intel had only one 64 MB Rambus DIMM available to lend to me and I didn't want to buy more.

All processors were 0.18 Coppermines. The Pentium III/600 used in the CA810 was an FC-PGA (Socket 370) with a 100 MHz FSB. The Pentium III/600EB used in the CC820 and VC820 was a Slot 1 with a 133 MHz FSB. The 600E used in the SE440BX2V was a Slot 1 with a 100 MHz FSB.

I think the results are interesting. Across the board, NT performs slightly better than Windows 98, as expected. That difference probably would have been more pronounced with 128 MB. In memory performance, the venerable 440BX chipset blows away the current 810E and the 820 when running SDRAM (even though the 820 has the advantage of running a 133 MHz FSB) and also beats the 810E and 820 in ZD CPU performance, albeit by only a few percent.

 

 

 

Windows 98 SE

ZD WinBench 99 1.1

SiSoft Sandra 2000.3.6.4

CPUmark 99

FPU WinMark

Dhrystone

Whetstone

CPU Memory

FPU Memory

600, 810E

52.8

3208.0

1616.0

802.8

211.4

223.6

600EB, CC820

52.3

3208.0

1617.0

803.0

203.6

234.8

600EB, VC820

55.8

3208.0

1617.0

803.0

359.2

457.8

600E (440BX)

55.1

3210.0

1617.0

803.2

287.8

317.6

 

 

 

Windows NT 4 Workstation 4.0 w/ SP6a

ZD WinBench 99 1.1

SiSoft Sandra 2000.3.6.4

CPUmark 99

FPU WinMark

Dhrystone

Whetstone

CPU Memory

FPU Memory

600, 810E

53.5

3210.0

1621.0

805.0

211.8

214.0

600EB, CC820

53.0

3212.0

1622.4

805.0

204.6

231.8

600EB, VC820

56.8

3212.0

1623.0

805.2

375.6

466.4

600E (440BX)

55.6

3218.0

1624.0

806.0

302.4

331.4

The really glaring difference, of course, is in SiSoft Sandra memory performance. On CPU memory, the VC 820 running RDRAM is about 25% faster than the 440BX running SDRAM, and roughly 75% faster than the CA810E and CC820 running SDRAM. On FPU memory, the difference is even more pronounced, with the VC820 40% to 45% faster than the 440BX, and as much as 118% faster than the CA810E. 

Note that these results are the most favorable you could ever expect from an RDRAM-based system. I used PC800 RDRAM, whereas nearly all systems that ship with RDRAM use the much slower (and less expensive) PC600 or PC700 RDRAM. Also, I used a single 64 MB RDRAM RIMM, which provides the highest possible performance. The horrible latency problems of RDRAM mean that using more than one RIMM incurs a big hit on memory performance.

All of that said, I have to say that I'm not sure how the memory performance benchmarks translate into real-world differences. I can't tell any difference when sitting in front of the machines. I used the fastest configuration (the VC820 with RDRAM) and the slowest configuration (the CC820 with SDRAM) extensively and interchangeably to perform my usual daily work. Both "felt" pretty much the same. Given that PC800 RDRAM currently costs something like eight times as much as SDRAM, if you can even find it, I don't think I'll be recommending the VC820, except perhaps conditionally based on the future cost of RDRAM.

I'm not finished with this project yet. I want to benchmark an overclocked 440BX running a 133 MHz FSB with PC133 SDRAM to see how it compares to the VC820. I also want to benchmark a VIA Apollo Pro133A motherboard, which runs a native 133 MHz FSB. I don't much like VIA chipsets, or SiS or ALi chipsets for that matter. In the past, I've found all of the Taiwanese chipsets inferior to comparable Intel chipsets in performance, compatibility, and stability. However, I will give the Pro133A a chance.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Scott Kitterman [mailto:scott@kitterman.com]
Sent: Thursday, April 06, 2000 9:14 PM
To: thompson@ttgnet.com
Subject: Going Linux

For roughly the last year I have been periodically pestering the manager of our web development group to consider shifting out of an MS only (NT 4, IIS, SQL Server, and Cold Fusion) infrastructure into one that is Linux based. In that time he's gone from a little hostile (why would I want to do that) to too busy (might be interesting, but don't have time) to, this week, I think we ought to try that.

I believe it is not only the Daynotes group that is coming to Linux. I believe he's looked at the path MS is on (W2KS) and is not anxious to play any part in it. I think your comparison with Netware may well prove to be prescient.

We'll see. A lot of people have pooh-poohed my comments about Windows 2000 vis-a-vis the NetWare 4.0 debacle, but I still maintain that there are a lot of interesting parallels. NetWare 4.0 was a buggy initial release with an unproven and confusing directory service that very few people adopted for production use. A rough-hewn but promising competitor was on the horizon in Windows NT. The situation with Windows 2000 versus Linux is similar, but Linux has more mind-share now than did NT when Novell dropped the ball, and Linux is already installed on a much higher proportion of servers than was NT. It'll be interesting to see what transpires. 

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Chris Ward-Johnson [mailto:chriswj@mostxlnt.co.uk]
Sent: Friday, April 07, 2000 7:21 AM
To: Robert Bruce Thompson (E-mail)
Subject: Mobo story for you

[here]

Chris Ward-Johnson
Chateau Keyboard - Computing at the Eating Edge
http://www.chateaukeyboard.com

Yes, I was actually reading this story as your message arrived. Pretty interesting, isn't it? As far as the 700 versus dual 500 comparison, my guess is that SETI had 100% of a 500 with everything else running on the second 500, whereas the single 700 machine could devote only a portion of its time to SETI, requiring the rest to run W2K services, the kernel, etc.

At any rate, this confirms my subjective impressions. My dual Pentium III/550 "feels" faster overall than a similar system running a single Pentium III/700.

 


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Saturday, 8 April 2000

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I actually cooked last night, manufacturing a batch of egg salad, starting with raw eggs. My mother and I pigged out on egg salad sandwiches. And people think I can't cook.

Somewhere around here is a nest of Ethernet cables, probably hibernating in a tangled ball like rattlesnakes in their winter quarters. Every time I need an Ethernet cable (or indeed any other kind of cable), I always buy two, sometimes three. The theory, of course, is that the next time I need one I'll have a spare. But it never works out that way. You'd think I'd learn.

Another little-known fact is that Ethernet cables may change color and shrink dramatically when stored. The other day, I needed an Ethernet cable. Somewhat to my shock, I actually found one where I thought I'd left it. The trouble was, when I put it on the shelf, it was a blue Cat5 14-foot Ethernet cable. When I went over to the shelf to retrieve it, it had transmogrified into a yellow Cat5 7-foot Ethernet cable.

I've been reading a biography of John D. Rockefeller, and the parallels with Gates and Microsoft are striking. Just like Microsoft, Standard Oil didn't do anything wrong, and yet was penalized simply because they were successful. Just like Microsoft, Standard Oil was penalized for competing successfully. All of the complaints had to do with them supposedly damaging their competitors rather than their consumers. In fact, the keystone of Standard Oil's success was to produce and sell oil at a profit while charging prices to consumers that were below its competitors' production costs. Rockefeller intentionally kept his prices so low that it was uneconomic for anyone to attempt to compete with him. So where was the damage to consumers?

Like Gates, he was damned if he did and damned if he didn't. If he raised prices, he was accused of gouging consumers. If he lowered prices, he was accused of putting competitors out of business. When he attempted to control his own product by developing his own distribution channels, he was accused of trying to put independent distributors out of business, although his real reason was to protect both consumers and his own reputation. Independent distributors, you see, had a nasty habit of adulterating his product with cheap oil produced by independent refiners. The problem was, that adulteration often took the form of diluting Standard Oil's pure kerosene with benzine (read gasoline), which was at the time considered a waste product. During the period that Standard Oil was developing its own distribution channels, between 5,000 and 7,000 people died every year in fires caused by burning adulterated kerosene in their lamps.

The thing that annoyed Rockefeller's critics like Tarbell the most was the so-called railroad rebates, which they condemned as an unfair business practice. Rockefeller responded, I thought reasonably enough, by saying, "Who should get the cheapest shipping rates per barrel? Someone who ships 5,000 barrels a day, someone who ships 500, or someone who ships 50?" In fact, these widely condemned rebates were simply volume discounts, which any reasonable person will admit are not an unfair business practice. 

Rockefeller guaranteed a full train of his tank cars, to be picked up from Point A and delivered to Point B. That express train was a cheap way for the railroads to operate, and a guaranteed regular source of income. Delivering the same volume from independent refiners required a local train with many stops along the way to load individual barrels (rather than Rockefeller's tank cars), and there was no guarantee that the train would not arrive at its destination only partially loaded. Every train the railroads ran on that basis was a gamble.

So the railroads charged the independent refiners their posted rates, and charged Rockefeller some fraction of those rates, often half or less. Nothing unreasonable about that. In fact, the railroads made more money from Rockefeller than they did from all of his competition combined, not just overall but per barrel transported. And yet these rebates were ultimately one of the major issues that caused the creation of the ICC, the passage of the Sherman Act, and the breakup of Standard Oil.

Rockefeller, who was demonized by his detractors, was in fact one of the most admirable public figures of his time. He lived modestly, eschewing the conspicuous consumption of many of his contemporaries like the Vanderbilts. He invented organized charitable contributions, founded the University of Chicago, and gave millions to support education and job opportunities for blacks at a time when that was unusual, to say the least. He was intensely religious, and followed the dictates of his religion in both his private and business lives. Even his detractors admitted that he was charming, polite, and scrupulously honest in all of his dealings. That wasn't enough, though. He made the mistake of being too successful.

I won't mention the title of the book I'm reading, because it's really just another hatchet job.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: J.H. Ricketson [mailto:JHR@WarlockLtd.com]
Sent: Friday, April 07, 2000 11:36 AM
To: gang@daynotes.com
Subject: Need the fix to get HDDs >8075Mb recognized

I am appealing to you lot to point me to the fix that allows HDDs > 8075Mb to be fully recognized, both IDE & SCSI.

I have the "disks > 1GB" option selected in SCSI, and the "Large" option for IDE HDDs selected in the BIOS.

Still only 8075Mb on a 13Gb IDE. (New, Quantum Atlas) and both 9.1Gb SCSI HDDs. (New, Quantum Atlas)

Your help & advice is solicited and will be greatly appreciated.

TIA

JHR 
--
[JHR, for The Warlock] jhr@warlockltd.com
Dawn is natures way of saying it's bedtime.

1. For IDE, don't use "Large", use "LBA".

2. For SCSI, you've done all you can do by setting it > 1 GB.

3. If the motherboard itself is reporting 8075, it must be an old motherboard. You may need a BIOS upgrade to support Extended Int13.

4. If, as I suspect, it's Windows NT that's reporting 8075, don't worry about it. NT4 Setup doesn't recognize drives larger than 8 GB, but NT4 Disk Administrator does. The easiest thing to do is install NT4 to a partition < 8075 MB. Once you've done that, start NT, fire up Disk Administrator (Start->Programs->Administrative Tools (Common)->Disk Administrator) and use it to partition and format the rest of the drive. If you insist on having a > 8 GB drive as one volume under NT, it can be done, but it's not easy. The first step is to install the drive in another NT system. Once that's done, partition and format it as one volume. Then remove it from the second system and put it in the new system. Run NT setup and choose to use the existing volume unchanged. Be aware that I've had problems with this method. I strongly suggest you create a smaller partition to install NT on and then use DA to partition and format the rest of the drive.

And later, I added the following remarks:

I replied to that message in book-author mode. Rather than swapping around hard disks to install NT4 on a > 8 GB hard disk, there are a couple of alternatives:

1. Use Partition Magic or something similar to pre-format the drive as NTFS. Setup will still see only the drive as 8.4 GB, but once you install NT4 and boot into it, it will work (usually). This is the procedure I mentioned that I had problems with sometimes. I've had it work successfully on some systems and fail on others. The following method is better.

2. Use the atapi.sys driver from a late service pack during setup. You'll find this procedure detailed [here

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: john biel [mailto:johnny51@home.com]
Sent: Friday, April 07, 2000 10:44 PM
To: webmaster@ttgnet.com
Subject: NDS for Linux

Hello Bob,

Noticed you mentioned NDS in a linux context, and thought I might let you know that it is available right now, (Novell says since the 13th of March but having been watching for it I know it wasn't available at that time, I didn't find a downloadable copy until the end of March.) Anyway it is available now. Incidently NDS has been available for NT for the past two years or so, and is now available for Win2K, Solaris and Linux. While my employer's network is mainly Novell 5, we have used NDS for NT with good success, I must say I still like NDS, niche product or not. It was a learning curve from 3.12 but it has proven to be worth the effort.

As an aside, in regards to Netscape 6 preview, don't know where these people are going but as an example your page  downloaded and rendered perfectly in 2.48 seconds on Friday April 7, IE 5 download and rendered perfectly in 3.5 seconds. www.cnn.com was 7 seconds in netscape and 5.5 seconds in ie 5, both browsers rendering perfectly. Not sure what these people are complaining about. As I mentioned before, because of the smaller size and the lack of java you may been more interested in the mozilla base than the netscape version. www.mozilla.org

Thanks. I hope Novell took my advice and released a free version of NDS for Linux for 50 users or whatever, much as HP has done with OpenMail. That would establish NDS for Linux as the de facto standard directory service overnight. I suspect that Novell didn't do that, however. Their marketing is abysmal. 

I'll check out Mozilla. I didn't realize that they were going to release a fully-functional browser under their own name. The more I hear about Netscape 6, the less I have any desire to try it. Yours is the first message I've received that's had anything nice to say about it at all.

 


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Sunday, 9 April 2000

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I know I don't tell Barbara this often enough, but I really appreciate what she does around here, which is basically everything. Having her gone for just a few days emphasizes that. I can barely get anything done trying to keep up with the stuff that she balances apparently so effortlessly. I do think I'll suggest that the next time she goes away she first pick up some Hungry Man frozen dinners or something. I can deal with heating those, just about. Or there's take-out, I suppose.

Talk about shooting myself in the foot. I was playing around with the new Windows 98 box I'm building and decided to muck about with the CD-RW drive. I fished around for a formatted CD-RW disc and came up with one that last been written to in June, 1999. It contained a copy of the \usr directory on the main server, with subdirectories thompson and barbara.

I decided that stuff was too old to care about, so I changed into the /usr directory, Shift-clicked to highlight both those subdirectories, and told Windows to delete everything. After only a couple of seconds of deleting activity, I suddenly remembered that that old data might include a copy of some old files that FrontPage deleted from my web due to the case-sensitivity conflict between NT4 and FP. I clicked Cancel to kill the deletion, intending to check to see if those files were still there. Imagine my horror when I realized that I'd been deleting from f:\usr (the main data directory on the network volume) rather than e:\usr (the CD-RW disc).

Fortunately, I'd just done a full xcopy backup of the entire f:\usr directory to the \databack directory on the new machine. So I turned around and did an xcopy right back the other direction. I even remembered to keep my main Outlook .pst file open on f:\usr so that the xcopy wouldn't overwrite my current mail data with data from earlier today. It appeared for a moment that no harm had been done. Until, that is, I fired up FP to write this sad tale. I have FP set to automatically open the last web that had been open. Imagine my horror again when FP informed me that it couldn't open my local master copy of the web because it didn't exist.

Fortunately, FP did offer to convert all of the existing data into an FP web, which it did after chunking away for several minutes. I knew what'd happen when I next posted changes, however, so I bit the bullet and went ahead and published. Sure enough, it published every single page in the web. I can't blame FP this time. It was my own fault. I was resigned to having all of the pages showing the current date and time, but it didn't change those. Very nice. So after a couple of hours work, I'm right back where I started.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Frank McPherson [mailto:frank@fmcpherson.com]
Sent: Saturday, April 08, 2000 11:15 AM
To: Robert Bruce Thompson
Subject: Rockefeller & Gates

Interesting comparison in your daynote entry for today. Just this morning I read this article in Salon that points out that Sen. Sherman was mostly concerned about concentrations of wealth and power. I think the inference is that the Sherman Anti-trust act was designed to protect consumer welfare per se, but instead to break up large concentrations of wealth and power, which Sherman and others thought was bad and distrusted.

There are also some interesting quotes in the article from Alan Greenspan.

Frank McPherson, MCSE
frank@fmcpherson.com, www.fmcpherson.com 
Microsoft MVP - Windows CE 
Windows CE Knowledge Center, http://start.at/know_ce

And, of course, the Sherman Act was so weak and riddled with loopholes that people ridiculed it when it was passed and for long thereafter. In fact, Rockefeller and Standard Oil considered the Sherman Act to be so innocuous that they didn't even bother to lobby against it.

* * * * *

-----Original Message-----
From: Keri M. Beland [mailto:kbeland@itool.com]
Sent: Saturday, April 08, 2000 11:07 PM
To: webmaster@ttgnet.com
Subject: Oh, I hope Barbara didn't read that <G>

> We'll be shifting to the male method this week. One bowl for the week, all dogs share one bowl, and all dog food is mixed together. They love to eat each others' food anyway.

Boy, I tell you that you are one lucky guy if She-Who-Separates-the-Food missed this <G>.

I hope all is well for you guys up there. I've missed reading everyone's site, and yours ALWAYS makes me chuckle.

Keri M. Beland 
"A vague disclaimer is nobody's friend. Have fun!" - Willow 
480-659-0458 
http://www.netwidows.itool.com/keri_beland.htm

Thanks. Actually, I was only kidding. I've given the dogs the same meticulous level of care that Barbara would have done had she been here. Really.

 


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Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 by Robert Bruce Thompson. All Rights Reserved.