Slash Boxes
NOTE: use Perl; is on undef hiatus. You can read content, but you can't post it. More info will be forthcoming forthcomingly.

All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

use Perl Log In

Log In

[ Create a new account ]

Matts (1087)

  (email not shown publicly)

I work for MessageLabs [] in Toronto, ON, Canada. I write spam filters, MTA software, high performance network software, string matching algorithms, and other cool stuff mostly in Perl and C.

Journal of Matts (1087)

Monday September 18, 2006
10:59 AM

On spending a week+ in Windows

[ #31043 ]

It's the little things that irritated me (compared to my mac)

  • Shutdown/startup from sleep isn't instantaneous. This is a brand new IBM running XP. How can they not have gotten this right yet?
  • Double clicking an IP address doesn't select the whole address. This works everywhere on my mac - in the browser, in the terminal, in the mail client, etc, and given my job involves a lot of work with IP addresses this proved really frustrating.
  • Alt-tab doesn't switch between apps - it switches between windows. Really annoying.
  • Alt-tab's little window display isn't selectable with the mouse - how easy would it have been to implement that - it's incredibly useful when you have a lot of windows open.
  • The cmd/cygwin window. Ugh. Just ugh. How can people use the command line on windows with that thing? Just horrendous (is there a free replacement anywhere?). Putty's window is much better, so I ended up installing sshd and ssh'ing to localhost. That's f*cked up.
  • Personal preference, but I don't like the mail clients (prefer
  • I missed Safari's RSS viewer. Why doesn't firefox's list how many new items there are?
  • It's amazing how much real-estate is wasted by each app having its own menu bar.

Back to the mac now. Feeling much more productive already :)

The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
More | Login | Reply
Loading... please wait.
  • FWIW: the 'Alt-Tab Replacement' power toy [] is a nicer alt-tab -- it shows you a screenshot of what you're alt-tabbing to, and it lets you click a window name to select it.

    • Why don't they make these things default? Sounds like a win-win (no pun intended) to me.
      • I wondered the same thing. My totally unfounded conclusion was that calculating the screenshot for display might be too burdensome for older computers/video cards. And they couldn't possibly have differing implementations based on hardware capabilities, could they?
      • We install that and make it the default in our workstation images.
    • I just tried that one, googled some more, and found TaskSwitchXP [], which I like much better.
  • I used to be bugged by a lot of those, particularly the alt-tab thing, back when Mac was my primary platform, but that was pre-OS X. It's amazing now how I've gotten used to it. I even found myself reflexively rising to defend Windows, just because I'm so used to it and it now seems right. Ugh.

    I start up one Cygwin command window each day, which runs ssh-agent and from which I then start up X. Then I do all my command-line stuff in x-terms. I like it, other than having the Cygwin command window in my

    J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers
    • To be honest the two most annoying things were not selecting the whole IP address (it's amazing how used to that I am, and how many times each day I use it!) and the shutdown/startup from sleep speed. Sadly neither can be cured by external patches (though putty can be set to select IPs I'm told - but I want it OS-wide).
  • puTTYcyg [] allows you to run a Cygwin bash shell directly in a modified Putty window. It's still a bit of a hack, but it's better than SSHing onto your own system.

    -- "It's not magic, it's work..."
  • You can switch windows with /control/ tab. :-)
    • Only in MDI apps.

      If I'm in Outlook or Thunderbird, ctrl-tab does not switch from the message viewer to a compose-mail window.
  • With UnxUtils [], vim [], and Vanilla Perl [] and some color/font changes, life with CMD.EXE has become a managable approximation of a Unix command shell.

    • Wow. I don't know how anyone who has used a decent terminal emulator and shell can consider cmd.exe a manageable approximation.
      • When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!

      • By fiddling with the font/colour stuff, as dagolden mentions, I can't say that I've ever managed to make it GOOD, but fortunately you can make it a LOT "less bad".
    • I use UnixUtils as well. I really wish Windows had a shell equivalent built in. You deal with it. I haven't ventured into the Vanilla Perl world yet (maybe when it gets out of alpha I will look). I do use Vim on everything I can install it on. Ah Vim, how did I work without you for so long.
  • Having suffered something similar recently myself, the two things that stand out in my mind are: First, the "where's my focus?" problem. When I close the topmost window on my mac, focus switches to the next window down. On Windows, it disappears into some weird netherworld, forcing me to reach for the mouse and click on the window that's already on top so I can type into it. Second, the horrible multitasking. Particularly with cygwin, I would be sitting there trying to use a shell, when all of a suddent