Each day tech-recipes gets a ton of comments. In fact, often the information that is left in the comments is more helpful that the original tutorial. 

Like on many other popular web sites, spammers frequently try to use our comments to gain attention for their own websites. 

Microsoft not only decided to spam our comments but is trying to steal our authors too?  Boo!  :)

microsoft blog spam

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Symfony 1.0 and MSSQL

February 18th, 2009

Symfony 1.0 has a never-going-to-be-fixed bug that prevents it from building the database automagically. Microsoft decided not to support the old php_mssql connection methods; therefore, it makes sense for symfony to abandon it as well.

Sadly, symfony 1.0 does not support the new database connection methods either… so we are stuck with hacks and workarounds.

Here is the fix for this error:

“Native Error: Incorrect syntax near ‘_PK’”

Change line 113 of engine/builder/sql/mssql/MssqlDDLBuilder.php from:

$lines[] = “CONSTRAINT “.$this->quoteIdentifier($table->getName()).”_PK
PRIMARY KEY (“.$this->getColumnList($table->getPrimaryKey()).”)”;


$lines[] = “CONSTRAINT “.$this->quoteIdentifier($table->getName().”_PK”).
” PRIMARY KEY (“.$this->getColumnList($table->getPrimaryKey()).”)”;

The original propel ticket provided this juicy info.

When I grabbed my key to our room in NYC, I noticed the Microsoft Surface ad:

Explore our neighborhood with a touch.
Experience Microsoft Surface in our lobby.

Our lobby actually had two surface systems being used as coffee tables.  The first one we found was actually turned off.  Even after finding and flipping the hidden power switch, nothing happened.  As we were walking out, I noticed the surface “water attract” screensaver running on another device.


Manipulation of the objects on the screen were very intuitive.  My 2 year old was clicking and moving objects easily.  My 6 year old figured out how to resize very quickly.  Controlling the surface was very similar to iPhone controls.   


Our device had only three applications:  pictures, music, and maps.

The pictures application mainly showed off pictures of the hotel properties.  The pictures were easily resized and manipulated with your fingers.  In fact, my kids were all resizing and moving pictures at the same time.  Johnrchang has a good flickr pic of this surface application:

The music application was a little more clunky. All the album covers could dragged out a list.  Clicking them flipped the album to show which songs were available inside.   Dragging these songs to a playlist started playing the songs.

The maps program was probably the most impressive.  It was started up in a full screen Microsoft Virtual Earth view of our current location.  By dragging and resizing, MightyQ started a nice impromptu tour of the city.  When the city roads did not demonstrate things very well, a flip into satellite view helped greatly.  One could zoom out as far as looking at the earth as a globe.  I think Q was disappointed that he could not tour the kids around the solar system as well.  Here is a tech-recipes flickr pic of my son manipulating the map:


To me this was one of the the most impressive things Microsoft has designed in a while.  Several visual bugs destroyed the illusion sometimes, but for the most part, the graphics and controls were great.  In the end, however, it really felt like playing with a giant version of the iPhone.  Whether built by Microsoft, Apple, or many other companies, I have no doubt that one day we will see surface-like devices everywhere. 

This will only work with SQL 2005 and prior.  SQL 2008 does not work.  Symfony commands are 1.0 style and other versions of symfony will need to use the updated command structure.


1. Create a database within SQL 2005 (example: testdb)
2. Authenticate the db with SQL Server Authentication (sa)

Windows Symfony Install:

1.Within the main php directory replace ntwdblib.dll with version 2000.80.194.0.  Google search for version or obtain from one of the links within php mssql_connect documentation.
2. Stop and restart apache
3. Clear cache in symfony.  If you receive pake errors with inverted slashes during “symfony cc”, then edit your spPakeMisc.php file and retry cache clear.
4. Edit your databases.yml with the following information.  Replace the password, ip address (or localhost), and database name with your information.  Remember that yml files must have spaces, not tabs.

    class:          sfPropelDatabase
       dsn:            mssql://sa:password@

5. Paste your dsn line above into the propel.database.url section of propel.ini. Paste the dsn line minus the database name into the propel.database.createUrl section.
6. Clear cache in symfony.
7. Be sure your schema.yml is correct.
8. From your project directory do symfony propel-build-model and be sure there are no errors.
9. From your project directory do symfony propel-build-sql
10. Although it is unlikely to work, you can try to do a symfony propel-insert-sql
11. If it inserts correctly, then you are set.  Most likely you will notice that all the SQL statements did not execute successfully.  You will probably see Native Errors regarding “Incorrect syntax near \’_PK\’.]” along with other errors.  This is fixed in propel 1.3 if you want to try to figure out how to upgrade symfony or install an updated propel plugin.  Otherwise, you are going to want to manually correct your propel generated sql based on the recommendations in this thread.  If your project is myproject, then your generated sql lives here:  c:\myproject\data\sql\lib.model.schema.sql

I’ll quote the important global search and replace information here:

(Ignore the quotes  )
seek for: “]_PK”
replace with: “_PK]”

Then you will also need to alter all the strings:


In addition you will need to also move all the entries (their block of statements: BEGIN AND END included) that carry:
to the end of the script

and finally move also all the
entries (their block of statements: BEGIN AND END included) to the bottom of the file

12. Copy this file to somewhere on your sql server.  Double-click to open it within SQL server and “execute” to populate the sql into your database.
13. Generate frontend and backend applications within symfony.  Generation of an propel-init-admin in the backend is a quick way to test database read/write.

Be sure that the correct version of the dll file is running.  Restarting apache should be enough, but you know how windows dll files are.  If something doesn’t seem to be working correctly, clear the symfony cache.  You know how the symfony cache can bugger up things.

Good luck.

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I have spent the last two days trying desperately to connect my symfony 1.0 application to a MS SQL Server 2008. It is just currently not possible… I believe.

Starting with SQL 2005, Microsoft decided to stop supporting the internal API from ntwdblib.dll and thus broke the mssql-connect method. Some people are still having success using the mssql-connect function with hacked/updated ntwdblib.dll files. I have not seen success with this in SQL 2008, however.

In order to avoid utilizing outdated methods, I started working with Microsoft’s new recommended method ODBC. Connecting with to the SQL Server 2008 with ODBC and basic php was simple. Therefore, I started hacking away at symfony configuration files to use the ODBC connect methods. No luck.

Symfony uses Propel for object-based database access. When selecting mssql in propel.ini or databases.yml, propel will attempt to connect using the mssql-connect dependent functions as mentioned above. Hopefully there will be full PDO (and thus ODBC) support in Propel 1.3.

Unfortunately, Propel 1.3 is not supported in Symfony 1.0. Propel 1.3 will be the default installation in Symfony 1.2. Some people may have success running a propel 1.3 plugin.

I would love to hear some success stories that contradict my findings…

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Microsoft’s weekly downloads and updates are typically on the boring, mundane side. This week, however, several downloads peaked my interest:

Windows Search Version 4.0 has been released for XP, Vista, Server 2003, Server 2008, and WHS. This updates the desktop search system and the Microsoft search enabled in Office, Outlook, and OneNote. This updates a bunch of bugs and is faster when compared to the previous search engines. You read more about the updated search from the preview post from March.

Microsoft Pro Photo Tools version 1 has been released. Essentially this is a metadata tool to help in adding positioning information to photos. Integration with Live Earth and support for route files such as KML has been included. XP and Vista versions are available with validation.

IE 8 Beta 1 continues to be available for testing across all windows platforms too.

My father is wanting a new computer, and I am trying to help him decide what he really wants. To refresh your memories, my father is retired and currently is using an XP desktop. I have already discussed laptop versus desktop. Next, we need to decide what OS to use.

Ubuntu is not an option. Even though it is quickly progressing as a mainstream OS, Ubuntu still requires too much tinkering under the hood. It will continue to get more popular, but it is not ready for primetime yet.


XP seems to be the easy, logical choice. Dad is already comfortable with much of XP’s interface. If he decides to use a laptop, he is going to be learning about networks, trackpads, and a whole bunch of other new stuff related to that. Adding a different operating system on top of it all might be too much. All of his old programs and hardware will still work fine. Plus, he can always decide to upgrade to Vista at a later date.

However, if my father is wanting a new computer, he is probably not really enjoying his current computing experience. He has already asked me about upgrading to Vista when it first came out. He certainly seems to be anxious for a change.


A switch to Vista would give most of the advantages of XP. (Vista Video Part 1 Here and Part 2 Here) For the most part the interace is very similar. In fact, you can even switch Vista back to an XP look. Most of his current software and hardware is likely to work too. On the down side, Vista only improves the user’s experience on a few fronts. Some of the changes to the user interface are confusing. Vista contains a lot of annoying bugs. Plus, Vista is treated poorly in the community, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Vista fades quickly much like Windows Millennium did.


Changing to an Apple system with OS X would be a big leap. (OS X Movie Tour here.) OS X is a much better, much easier (but also very different) interface than windows. Most day to day activities are more simple on OS X, but learning a completely new operating system is tough. Spyware, viruses, and bugs are much less of a worry on the Apple system. However, much of his current hardware and sofware are unlikely to work. Many of the day to day activities such as editing and printing pictures would need to be retaught and relearned. Most of the games and software that he uses now, he would have to give up. (Parallels or Boot Camp would be way over his head.) The lack of a nearby Apple store for training keeps things tough. If dad can get over the hump and learn OS X, his overall experience is likely to be better than with a Microsoft system. That hump just seems to be large.

If dad was not already comfortable with an operating system, I would suggest starting with OS X. However, now that he knows XP, should I reinvent the wheel?

Any suggestions?

The journey starts off innocently enough…

To: “David Kirk”
Subject: Lap Top
Date: Wed, 16 Apr 2008 09:41:18 -0400
MIME-Version: 1.0

I am going to get a laptop. I need your help on what and where to get .


My father wants to get a laptop. I have that feeling that a parent gets when a child asks for a car or a bike or whatever. What appears to be a simple task is really a challenge to find the perfect fit.

Clark Kent glasses
Creative Commons License photo credit: Andrew*

Easy answers exist. If I were a zealot one way or another, then I would tell him to get whatever is my favorite device of the moment. I could be lazy and just send him a bunch of links and then hope he figures it out all on his own. Easy answers would lead to confusion and frustration for both of us — especially with parents living 13 hours away.

Dad is currently running an XP box with broadband, printer, scanner, and a couple of digital cameras. He learns well through step-by-step directions but can stumble if new obstacles are thrown his way. He transitioned away from AOL easily enough. However, storing, editing, and retrieving photos in an efficient way still seems challenging.

Just when I think Dad’s system is running well, he wants a laptop. Of course, he does. Everybody wants a laptop. My desktop is used less and less since I started with my laptop. My wife is the same way. A laptop, however, introduces a whole bunch of new challenges.

To work well, a laptop needs a wifi network. To exchange files between a laptop and desktop is not painless or intuitive. Using a scanner and a printer with a laptop has unique challenges too. To top it all off, I have to decide if now would be a good time to introduce Dad to the world of Apple and OS X.

I wanted Dad and me to sit down over some adult beverages and discuss this; however, he is excited to get started. Anxiously, I have been pondering my plan, and I hope I have found the correct path. I am going to tackle each potential decision as a separate blog post. I will try to weigh the strengths and weakness at each step to help Dad make his choice. Hopefully, my blog readers will chime in with additional information as well.

Here are a few examples of planned posts:

  • Laptop versus desktop
  • Apple versus Microsoft
  • Save or ditch the desktop

I will start each post from a beginner level and expand into our normal geek territory. If interesting comments appear, I will amend and edit my posts to reflect new ideas as well.

My father was key into getting me into computers. I get my technology-loving side honestly. Help us find him the best system.

I will blog these entries as computer4dad if you want to keep up with the series.

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The Ten Internet Trends of 2007

December 17th, 2007

When we look back on 2007 in a few years, these ten topics and companies will be the milestones that will be referenced and debated:

  • 1. Google Pushes Its Power
  • 2. Aggregators Polluted by the Mobs
  • 3. Mobile Web. Why?
  • 4. User-Submitted Profits
  • 5. Apple Leaps
  • 6. Microsoft Tumbles
  • 7. DRM. Die. Die. Die.
  • 8. Main Stream Media Invasion
  • 9. Politics’ Internet Fruitfulless
  • 10. Social Network Assimilation

1. Google

Google is currently the most powerful technology company in the world. With dominance in search and advertising, profits and stock prices have been impressive.

This year will be remembered as the point that google starting flexing its power to change people’s actions on the internet. Matt Cutts confirmed that google would punish people buying and selling links to influence search engine placement.

Google decreased the clickable adsense area which decreased some publishers’ income by well over 50%.

Google has openly started attacking social networks such as Facebook by joining the smaller networks through the OpenSocial API and by socializing Google services such as Google Reader. This dilutes the power that any one social networking system has. Google’s purchase of Jaiku is a direct competitor to IM candy Twitter. Google’s Android dilutes the potential power of a cellular network as well.

Wikipedia and squidoo will soon be feeling the google crunch next. Collaborative content is one of the most amazing products being created and delivered on the internet. Google’s Knol wants to compete here as well. Like many others, TechCrunch is worried about the conflict of interest:

Google says that Knol pages will be indexed into their search engine but will have no special ranking. That’s a little bit untrue, since they’ll be hosted by Google and will have the advantage of Google’s hefty PageRank to lift them in search results. And since no one will be auditing Google to ensure that Knol pages are treated just like everyone else, there are bound to be claims of conflict of interest.

This first started by competing with Microsoft through online services. Is Google’s strategy to dilute any potential collection of power?

2. Web 2.0 Aggregators

Digg and Reddit have moved away from tech. Sad.

Mob Rule. Tyranny of the Majority. Ochlocracy. Whatever you call it, these sites are the weak, fluffy versions of what they used to be. As the less-geek have moved in, the content of these aggregators have followed. Even the creators cannot control the sites anymore.

Unless you have a large social connection within these sites, you have no chance of getting an article viewed… (unless you pay for it.) Socializing is more important than quality.

Although I view both of these sites on a daily basis, they are frequently gamed, overcome with political manipulation, often filled with spamish links, and are utterly unrealiable as news sources.

What’s the alternative? You can always read what the A-List boys’s club is echoing about on techmeme. Or you can watch the main stream news… which is frequently gamed, overcome with manipulation… You get the idea.

3. Mobile Web

The mobile web is growing and growing. However, unless you are selling ringtones, nobody has figured how to make money from it. Even mobile web experts are puzzled on the exact nature of making money through mobile devices.

Plus, does there have to be a special “mobile web” anymore? The iPhone displays regular web content through a cell interface. Instead of manipulating content to look pretty on tiny browsers, manipulate the cell web browser to view existing content well on the cellular interface. When was the last time you remember visiting a mobi site?

4. User-Submitted Profits

Everybody is making money on the back on the users.

NewsVine, Squidoo, Wikipedia, Digg, Reddit, YouTube, Facebook. If you really think about it, none of these companies would work without the public building content for them. You are building content for them. Congratulations! When do you expect your check?

Even blogs and forums get boost from comments and discussions created within their communities. (Please comment, please, please, please…)

How long will people continue to sow content in the sites of others for free?

5. Apple

I personally believe that this was an amazing year for Apple. Apple stocks are certainly booming.

The iPhone has changed the cellular landscape that parallels how the iPod changed the portable musical player market. Apple’s commericals are painfully clever in their attacks against Microsoft. Leopard’s problems have been far less damaging than Vista’s which has helped as well. Overall, more and more people are considering moving to Apple’s platform.

Apple has shown areas of weakness, however. The AppleTV push has really died for the general public. With an anorexic iTunes movie selection, the AppleTV has little appeal to the nongeek. iTunes itself is having growing pains with content providers. NBC/Universal have decided to play hardball with TV shows and music. It’s difficult to know how it is going to play out. Apple is understandingly becoming weaker and weaker for DRM as well.

Being less ambitious than Vista has played well for Leopard. However, the new OS X is still causing growing pains for a lot of people. Feeling the vapor, we are still wondering where the much promised ZFS is?

6. Microsoft

As a one time Microsoft zealot, I am pained to see what has happened to Microsoft this year. Vista is failing because it has taken users too many steps as once. We all had to throw away most of our old hardware when XP rolled out. Most of us accepted this because the pre-XP experience was so unstable. XP was the successful promise of easy usage and stability. I wanted to install XP for my parents because I knew it would make things easier for them.

Today the market is different. Things worked pretty well before Vista. People do not want to sacrifice most of their hardware to get things working correctly. Plus, now we have 32-bit versus 64-bit discussion and “ultimate” products that add little except confusion.

Away from the OS, Microsoft’s search engines and ad networks are stagnant, and Microsoft certainly seems to be trying to kill html email usability. From my experience at FOWD, Sean Siebel is not an impressive “User Experience Evangelist.” At least Scoble tried.

Microsoft has made a few positive steps this year. The Microsoft Home Server is a new idea for a new market. If done well, it could be an essential box in every household. IE7 is a large improvement over IE6. Microsoft is investing in Facebook. Even the second Zune release (and the free software upgrade to the first version) is finally generating a little positive Microsoft buzz. Silverlight and Surface are sexy and innovative.

7. DRM

Could 2007 be the year that DRM finally starts to die?

Die. Die. Die.

Shawn Fanning’s original idea of drm-free Napster could exist in several different forms over the next few years. iTunes Plus and Amazon’s DRM free shows that the big guys are creeping into this direction. Steve Jobs thinks this way, too.

Radiohead’s In Rainbows “pay us what you want” experiment is exciting. Saul Williams and Trent Reznor are doing something similar.

Give them the music for free and sell them on the other stuff. It’s coming.

8. Main Stream Media

How about give them the content for free, too?

The New York Times is finally free. Online circulation is having to make up for the dying dead trees distribution:

Nationwide, average daily paid newspaper circulation declined 2.6 percent in the six months that ended Sept. 30, compared with the previous year, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, an independent organization that monitors the industry. Sunday circulation dropped 3.5 percent nationwide during the same period.

As the main stream media looks to supplement eyeball views with online content, their articles are appearing more and more in news aggregators. How long until we figure out that some of digg’s top users are on the payrolls of popular newspapers or public relations companies?

As advertising dollars move from TV and newspaper to the internet, the main stream media is following. How much this will drown out the current boom on citizen journalism is unclear.

9. Internet and Politics

Howad Dean’s success and subsequent failure seemed to grow from within communities within the internet. Was online activism a good idea too early? Will the traditionally nonvoting, young, internet crowd actually play any role in the upcoming elections? These are the questions that campaigns are asking .

Campaigns are on MySpace, FaceBook, and YouTube. You can not read digg or reddit without reading about Ron Paul or Kucinich. Of course, strike911 received active buzz throughout the internet without getting support from the general public or receiving any real main stream press.

This campaign cycle should be a great test to see if online voting and protesting will cause any offline results.

10. Social Networks

Online social networks have continued to grow throughout 2007. The large players like MySpace and Facebook are ubiquitous. How they are changing our interactions with our personal worlds are staggering. The influence and entertainment role of TV is being largely supplanted by these social networks. For many, offline social interactions are first initiated and planned online. Small niches of personalities and beliefs can find like-minded partners.

The success of YouTube and Flickr is obviously dependent on their social interactions. Digg and reddit are driven by social interactions. Dating networks are thriving.

As more of our social lives are played out online, more of our personal information is accessible online as well. More of our personal actions and characteristics are targeted by advertisers. More of our actions can be collected and used against us. Will an insurance company be able to find out that you are a member of a tobacco social group or a Huntington’s disease facebook group? The ultimate balance between profit and privacy will be difficult.

11. Memes?

Oh wait.. I left out lolcats. I am not sure if that’s a trend or a plague, but 2007 is certainly the a year of it. Or maybe it’s not a trend, maybe it is a meme. Who knows anymore…

As I reread my article, my overall feeling is that our experience on the internet is becoming more complex. The name “google” no longer gives most people warm and fuzzy feelings. Digg and reddit are often manipulated more than main stream media. Facebook is looking to trade privacy for profits.

The idea of a “do no evil” company is more likely an untruth than an oxymoron. Previously, we thought it was possible on the internet. No more.

Of course, I would not want to do without Facebook, Digg, Reddit, or Google. We all benefit from the battles between Apple and Microsoft. Companies need to make money to survive. The balance is tough.

The real world continues to invades our idealist internet utopia. “Toto, I’ve got a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore,” but I would rather be here than anywhere else.

Let’s get ready to rumble in this upgrade battle. XP to Vista versus Tiger to Leopard.

The weekend that Leopard was released I decided to upgrade both my systems at once. I upgraded my MBP from Tiger to Leopard at the same time that I upgraded my windows desktop from XP to Vista.


My wife wants to upgrade to Leopard. My father wants to upgrade to Vista. The purpose of this experiment was to see if I should recommend these upgrades to my family and the tech-recipes audience.


In the OS X corner, I have my Apple laptop that is used for most of my day to day work–browsing, photo editing, blogging, programming, and such. It already has Vista installed on it in Parallels. It was running tight without obvious problems prior to the upgrade. In the XP corner, I have my trusty desktop system that is used mainly for audio/video editing, gaming, and Office. It too was running well prior to the upgrade. The XP box did contain an elderly ds2416 audio mixing card that can be flakey. I removed it completely prior to the upgrade because I have not researched drivers for it yet.

Both systems received adequate back-up before the upgrade. Despite my personal preference for wipes and fresh installs, I purposefully decided to do straight upgrades on both systems for this battle.

I enjoy using both windows and OS X systems and frequently write tutorials regarding both. (I got no agenda/prejudice.)

Leopard Install–

I started the installation disk, answered a few questions, and let it fly. Like in Tiger, .Mac is thrown in your face. I did not time the process but it seemed to be about an hour. The system requested an update of the OS over the internet soon after the install completed. The update process took just a few minutes. No error messages or difficulties during the install.

The transparent menu bar, 3-D dock, and the new folder styles are immediately noticeable. However, clicking around yields no real surprises. For the most part, the basic functionality is consistent from Tiger.

Vista Install–

I started the installation disk and was asked to pick the flavor of Vista that I had purchased. I used the traditional x86 version (as everybody probably should be doing.) The deferral of the serial number and activation process was a nice change from XP’s installation. The install process updates itself over the internet prior to the actual act of installation which is really smart. Unfortunately it did not prevent a IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL Stop BSOD error. I tried to do a repair install as suggested by the installation wizard without success. Eventually, google helped me find the issue, and the installation proceeded successfully after I pulled out a couple of sticks of memory to get below the 3 gig limit.

After installation, the new windows eye-candy interface Aero was not enabled for some reason. Aero was manually enabled without difficulty. Trying to go to the control panel caused explorer to die probably from an incompatible .cpl file. I updated Vista through Windows update. The downloading and installing of those updates actually look longer than the entire Leopard install did. Some of the updates did not install correctly. My Microsoft bluetooth mouse and keyboard would not work.

Most programs worked as expected; however, explorer and other windows processes would die unexpectedly. Here is my favorite error message out of several: Microsoft Windows Operating System has stopped working. Nice.

Windows Operating System has stopped working

Many core aspects of navigation within Vista has changed from XP. Aero is certainly a beautiful and striking change from XP. The Start Menu changes are powerful but will be confusing to the average upgrading user. Navigation through Explorer with breadcrumbs is more radical than Leopard’s Breadcrumb navigation option.

Post-Installation Problems–

My Leopard install does not browse my network. I cannot see shares. iTunes does not see my AppleTV. My wife’s Tiger box browses it without difficulty, and I can directly connect without problems. Firefox, Cyberduck, and Adium are less stable or have annoying superficial changes after the upgrade. The fact that the Documents and Download folder icons are indistinguishable is annoying to me; however, that’s a OS X style issue more than a problem.

leopard documents and download folder icons

I feel no speed difference between Tiger and Leopard. I am currently using the Leopard upgraded box as my main laptop and see no reason to do a clean or archive type of upgrade at this time.

My Vista box continued to be very unstable with random crashes. I made a rough estimation that it would take me longer to debug the crashes than to restore my data from a clean installation. My clean installation of Vista worked much better. Even after the clean installation, the new Aero interface caused a slight, but detectable, drag on my system. A moderate upgrade of the video card helped make the system more brisk but not quite to XP levels. Copying and moving files is obviously slower. Running some programs required ‘Run as Administrator’ type of work-arounds.


My Leopard installation went smoothly. Having never done an OS X upgrade before, I was expecting absolute perfection. Q always tells me that “OS X just works.” Things were not perfect, but the issues were minor.

My Vista upgrade was a disaster. Even if you ignore the show-stopping BSOD during installation, the upgraded product was ultimately unusable. The complete fresh install of Vista is not perfect either, but most of the eye candy and advancements are impressive. The Vista to XP jump is a much more ambitious step for Microsoft than the safer Tiger to Leopard jump for Apple.

My goal for this project was not to recommend one OS over the other. I use them both regularly, and the zealot fanboy arguments between the camps are silly. I wanted to contrast the upgrade experience between Leopard and Vista. This little experiment certainly answers many questions for me.

Once a patch is released to fix Leopard’s network issues, I will recommend that my wife upgrades her MBP. I will plead that my father not upgrade to Vista. The installation issues and the change in the user interface would challenge his (and thus my) sanity. As a lifelong windows user, I was appalled at the disaster that was the Vista upgrade process. For people purchasing top class windows hardware, I would be willing to recommend a Vista clean install. I do not believe that a clean install on older hardware is probably worth it.

My Personal Leopard Grades:

- Installation Process: A. Perfect.
- New Features: B. Time Machine, Stacks. (Techrx Tutorials)
- New Bugs: C. Network browsing.
- Consistent/Familiar User Interface: B.
- Eye-Candy Improvements: C. Changes can not be easily enabled/disabled.

My Personal Vista Grades:

- Installation Process: F. BSOD. Unusable upgraded product.
- New Features: B. Sidebar. DirectX10. Better security. (Techrx Tutorials)
- New Bugs: C. Slower copying.
- Consistent/Familiar User Interface: C.
- Eye-Candy Improvements: B. Up to OS X quality but customizable. Slows system.

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