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About TheLastMan

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  1. TheLastMan

    A survey: What is correct:

    A. I know you don't want to discuss this, but this is a discussion forum and there seems to be some confusion. The "standard" aspect ratio for CRT monitors is 4:3. The "standard" aspect ratio for LCD monitors is a more "square" 5:4. The usual 4:3 aspect ratios are 640x480, 800x600, 1024x768, 1152x864, 1280x960 and 1600x1200. The only commonly used 5:4 aspect ratio I know of is 1280x1024. This is the standard resolution for 17" and 19" LCD monitors. The larger LCD screens (20" and above) tend to revert to the 4:3 aspect ratio to accommodate a native resolution of 1600x1200. If you display a 4:3 resoultion (such as 1024x78) on an LCD screen it will appear "stretched" in the vertical dimension. Most digital cameras produce photos in a 4:3 ratio. The exception is digital SLRs which tend to produce photos in an even wider format of 2:1. That is why digital photos displayed on an LCD monitor have a black border top and bottom whereas on a CRT monitor they are displayed full screen.
  2. TheLastMan

    NTLDR error grrrrr!

    Ghost didn't work Exactly the same error message. Tried both cloning the drive and creating an image and restoring. There is clearly an issue with WindowsXP, the MBR and the change of disk hardware when using FAT32. Ah well. I will buy an external enclosure for the disk and use it as extra external storage. I have managed to solve some of ther performance issue in any case. I simply disabled the page file. I have 1gb of memory and am careful to keep an eye on Windows Task manager. I am particularly careful when running photo editing software - which gobbles memory! My computer still takes around 4 minutes to boot up, but I no longer get the frequent 10-20 second freezes as it recalls a window from the page file. Not sure I would recommend that course of action to anyone else but it works for me!
  3. TheLastMan

    Slow laptop drive

    I'm not familiar with Netware policies but isn't it possible to set policies for certain machines instead of only users? That way you could convert pc's to NTFS in batches and change policies for a given batch when it's converted. Yep, however I discussed this with one of the sysadmins and he said that basically the entire company is on the same desktop / admin profile. He sees no problem with FAT32. Quote: "it works, why fix it". The fact that I have to wait 3-4 minutes for my laptop to boot bothers him not. I am not sure how NTFS would affect this anyway. How would Active Directory being slow impact on the end user?
  4. TheLastMan

    NTLDR error grrrrr!

    Could be the MBR wasn't copied then. So the MBR lies outside the partition? That would explain it! If that is the case, can I simply copy over the MBR to the new disk in some way? How would I go about that bearing in mind all of the disk is now taken up with the partition? The WinXP installation on the original disk was just a company standard image so I do not have the original install disks or serial numbers etc, so a repeat "setup" operation is out of the question. Either I do a succesful "clone" or I will have to give up. On further thought I will probably try uninstalling Ghost and reinstalling and running it under Windows. Thanks for your help!
  5. TheLastMan

    Slow laptop drive

    That about sums it up How many pc's are there in the company? If it's a really, REALLY large number I understand that converting all of them to NTFS and changing the policies can e a major PITA but... W2K has been available for over 5 years and everybody knows to run it on NTFS, not FAT!!! There are enough people looking for a job vacancy. Perhaps your boss should make a couple of admins redundant. There are around 500 employees with PCs in our London HQ and about another 500 in 15 offices around Europe. All are running with Novell Netware client. The network is a private WAN/LAN through COLT (City of London Telecommunications). All the network servers are based in the UK on a 2 terrabyte Novell NAS for file storage plus multiple Apps servers running all sorts of databases (Oracle, MS SQL server etc) as well as bespoke applications. My quote about lazy admins was tongue in cheek The problem is not Win2K or XP it is Novell Netware. The problem for the company is that it is so big that it can never be in the situation of having everyone on the same OS. When I joined (1999) they were still in the process of migrating over from Win98 (FAT32) to WinNT (NTFS). This is when they encountered major issues with Novell Netware being unhappy mixing FAT32 policies (designed for the Win98 machines) and NTFS machines. Over time they replaced all the NT machines to Win2000 on FAT32. That way the Win98 and Win2000 machines could cohabit with a FAT32 policies. They finally got rid of the last Win98 machines in 2003 and we all had Win2000. IMHO that is when they should have bitten the bullet and done a mass conversion to NTFS - possibly over a weekend. But inevitably there would be a problem with some machines being missed out. Now they are migrating everyone over to WinXP and all still on FAT32! I have since heard that the company is scrapping Netware and going to an all Microsoft solution. Not sure if that is a backwards or forwards step. I can see it causing a lot of disruption when it happens! That does mean they will be able to do NTFS without a problem. As you may see in another thread the "buy a new hard drive" solution didn't work. If I can't fix it using a bit of fiddling with repair console or a boot disk I will give up and wait for the OS changeover before trying again. By that time I may have a new laptop and the problem may have gone away!
  6. TheLastMan

    NTLDR error grrrrr!

    Partition to partition. There is no "disk copy" function in Partition Magic. My current disk has a single partition which takes up all the disk and I simply copied this over to the new disk. Both are 40gb disks so no problem there. The partition is set as active on both drives. To all intents and purposes they are identical partitions. It is just that on the original disk it is 2 platters / 3 heads but on the new one it is 1 platter two heads. I had a look at Norton Ghost which will do a disk copy operation but my Ghost installation seems to be broken on my main PC. Not sure why. I am thinking of creating a bootable WinXP recovery disk to find out if it can see the files. Not sure what to do then though! I don't have a Windows 98 disk to hand. What can a Win98 disk do that a WinXP disk can't? There is a MS knowledge base article that talks about using the "sysprep" command to amend something or other but apparently once the repair is done you have to reinstall the OS. I cannot do that in this case.
  7. TheLastMan


    the Highpoint PCI card does support hot swapping. Check with the motherboard documentation whether its controllers do. Also, the Highpoint eSATA kit uses a proprietory cable design. The external socket(s) on the RocketRaid PCI card are designed for that cable. You will need some kind of adaptor to convert the onboard SATA sockets into HighPoint eSATA sockets on the rear of the PC. The only adapter I have seen just put normal SATA sockets on the back of the PC, I have not seen one which converts SATA into HighPoint eSATA sockets. Remember HighPoint want to sell controller cards! If I were you I would forget using the onboard sockets on your new motherboard and keep the PCI card installed on your new motherboard for your eSATA needs.
  8. TheLastMan

    NTLDR error grrrrr!

    Bought a new Hitachi 5K100 40gb drive to replace the horribly slow laptop drive. See thread here. Plugged both drives into IDE slots in my main PC and used Partition Magic to copy the contents of the old disk onto the new. Remember that I cannot change the FAT32 partition to NTFS because of compatibility problems with Novell Netware. Plugged new hard drive into laptop and turn on. Error message pops up "NTLDR not found. Press any key to restart" Press any key and the same error message appears. Googling the problem turns up the issue that if you copy a FAT32 installation of XP onto a new drive with a different configuration of platters / heads then this can happen. Basically the "geometry" of the data laid out on the disk (which is the same as the old disk) does not match the real geometry of the new disk. In other words the BIOS cannot read the new disk because the data layout does not match the physical geometry. Apparently you don't get this problem with NTFS which uses a different system for laying out the data on the disk. Arrrrggggg!!! Any suggested solutions? Can I do anything without going through the whole disk copy procedure again? The only thing I can think of is to use Partition Magic to convert the new disk to NTFS and see if it works at all. If it does I can then install Partition Magic on the laptop and convert the disk back to FAT32, which Partition Magic can do (unlike Windows itself which does not permit a reverse conversion from NTFS to FAT). All help gratefully received.
  9. TheLastMan

    Laptop drive jumper block?

    Yeah, I know the web site - I was just wondering if anyone had ever actually put a jumper on one of these drives and if so where they got it from.
  10. My OEM Hitachi Travelstar did not appear to come with a jumper block which is needed to set it as slave or cable select. I need to set the jumper so it is a "slave". Is the block stored somewhere on the drive and I have just not noticed it?
  11. TheLastMan

    Best backup solution?

    My backup plan is I use synchronisation software (ViceVersa Pro) to create mirrored copies of all my data folders on an external hard drive connected by USB 2.0. This can be setup to automatically update on boot-up, daily or as many times during the day that you wish. The advantage over "backup" software is the files are instantly available - you can browse the disk just as you would any other. There is no need to "restore" them if you don't want to. I then take a DVD copy of my backup drive when ever I get round to it. Usually every month or so. If one hard drive fails it is a simple job to copy the data back. In the unlikely event that both my backup drive and my internal hard drive fail simultaneously, at least I won't be more than a month out of date with the DVD. With a hard drive strategy it is possible to make the backup automatic. With DVD you have to be bothered to think about it and take the time to do it. It may also mean multiple DVD's if you have a lot of data which can be such a bore that you fail to do it often enough. A friend of mine who works from home and has more critical data uses a similar strategy but with two external hard drives. He swaps the removable hard drives round every day and puts the unused one in a small fire-proof safe. That way a power surge or lightning strike that could knock out both internal and external hard drives will not destroy more than a day's worth of data. The lengths you go to will depend on how valuable your data is to you!
  12. TheLastMan

    New 150GB Raptor Versus...

    Don't bank on it. The Raptor 74gb has barely changed in price since it first came out. Being such a unique product and with world beating performance I reckon they will sell every 150 gb unit they can make even at the current high price.
  13. TheLastMan

    Slow laptop drive

    Good idea about the 2.5" to 3.5" converters. Will have a browse around to see what is available. Might buy an IDE connector card as well (cheap as chips these days) so I don't need to disturb my optical disks while doing it. Keeping the original drive in case something "gets hosed" is essential. Not sure what you mean here. I would only ever clone a whole drive, I would not expect to restore individual files. You say you "would not recommend converting". I have converted partitions on my main PC to and from FAT32 and NTFS quite safely using Partition Magic (don't ask me why - just playing around!). Have you had problems?
  14. TheLastMan

    Slow laptop drive

    I think they put the 4200 rpm drives in the ThinkPad X series to save power rather than cash. If you look on the spec of the drive posted above they use almost no power compared with a faster RPM drive. The downside of course is poor performance. The real fault seems to lie with my employer who has just upgraded us all to Windows XP but rather than update the "group policies" (which re-sets our desktops etc to the Company brand each time we log on) to one based on NTFS they have just kept us all on FAT32. Bloomin' lazy sysadmins! If I am feeling brave, my alternative choice is to install PartionMagic and upgrade to NTFS and see how I get on. If my log-on procedure really is screwed, PartionMagic always allows one to convert back again. Will need to try all this in the office at a weekend to avoid having a messed up laptop while trying to work! Ho-hum.
  15. TheLastMan

    Slow laptop drive

    The laptop is out of warranty in which case the company policy is to replace the machine rather than the drive so "accidentally" giving it bad sectors would mean about a week of backing up data and restoring applications and data to the new machine. The current company standard laptop is the X34 - which uses virtually the same drive! After a bit of digging around I have narrowed the problem down to FAT32. Diskeeper states that it (and XP generally) runs a lot faster on an NTFS partition than a FAT32 one. Unfortunately the company applies Novell Netware group policies based on a FAT32 partition. Netware support site states: So if I break company policy and convert my drive to NTFS and I experience problems I am going to get a severe "telling off". I had thought about the 7200 drive option. I have a spare copy of Norton Ghost. How do you suggest I go about doing this bearing in mind I only have a USB CD drive for the laptop?