Tuesday, November 20, 2007

All I Want for Christmas...

Is a goddamn unified .NET Framework installer package that can actually be slipstreamed into an XP install without taking all the time it normally takes to install itself and yet still somehow manage not to register when I try to install an application that requires .NET.

Seriously, Microsoft, what the fuck. Not only do you have 3 versions that are not one steady version cycle (.NET Framework 1.1 is not included in the 2.0 package...you have to install both, but 3.0 will install 2.0 along with its own components...I think), but it is, as far as I can tell, goddamn impossible to get them all to install and play nice when trying to include them in an unattended XP setup.

Lady J and others who take issue/wonder why/question me when I say that WinXP is a broken shitpile of an operating system...this is a prime example of what I'm talking about.

Please...just...please...you include all your patches and security hotfixes in Service Packs, can't you do the same for the .CRAP Framework?

I wouldn't even give a shit except that the very software I use to build my unattended installs, nLite, is itself dependent on .NET 2.0.

I am SO glad that Ubuntu 7.10 is so awesome. Maybe finally having a Linux distro that's as automagic as MacOS will take the pressure off this ideal-XP-setup-in-a-box project. If you haven't tried it lately or at all, definitely give Ubuntu a shot. Download the LiveCD, burn it, and take it for a spin. Runs totally off CD, no "commitment" necessary.

In other news (because I just can't leave a topic the fuck alone for the life of me), I've been kinda rediscovering Nightwish's music. Their latest release left me kinda lukewarm and I've been going back and listening to classic 'Wish, and I've determined that their "Oceanborn" album is better than I may have given it credit for in the past. I had forgotten that they could produce sounds that hard in light of their more recent stuff, which either attempts to be epic (and is thus outperformed by Epica and Therion) or panders to the "U DUN KNOW HOW I HURTS INSIED!" wrist-cutter crowd (and is thus outperformed by...how the hell should I know? I take out my inner torment and self-loathing on other people, fuck ruining my nice shirts taking razors to my own arteries). Oceanborn was still "gothy" but had gems like Devil & the Deep Dark Ocean to remind you that yes, they are metal. The "Wishmaster" album also had some good guitar work, more intricate than what's found on "Once" or "Dark Passion Play," which seem to lean more toward repetitive chords heavily accented by percussion. I think part (perhaps a large part) of the problem I had/have with them is that they tend to stand way back with their instrumentals when Tarja and/or Annette are singing. Therion, by contrast, will layer intricate guitar riffs right on top of the vocals, almost always to thrilling effect. I have the same problem with Within Temptation, who actually sound like they downmix the instrumentals during mastering and artificially emphasize Sharon's voice. Sounds very, very unnatural. Guys...if I wanted vocals-uber-alles, I'd listen to Top 40 pablum. Metal's good because the vocals either take a backseat to instrumentals or complement them without stealing the show. I don't care how great your singer's voice is - Olaf Hayer, Liv Kristine, Floor Jansen, Hansi Kursch, Roy Khan, Simone Simons, Tarja Turunen, this includes you - metal is about the instrumentals first. Namely guitar and drums. The rest is gravy. Sweet gravy, as in the case of Epica and Therion's choirs, but gravy just the same.

In Nightwish's case, though, I just have to be careful not to overdose on them again, as I think that's why I was cold to them for a long time there. They're still universes behind Therion, but...yeah, they're good.

Also, I think I pirate too much. I have a LOT of CDs to burn. On a related note, anyone know where I can get either:

A. Good deals on LightScribe discs (particularly DVD, but I'll take CD deals too), or

B. Dual-layer DVD+/-Rs at a sane price? Circuit City wanted $60 for a 25-pack. Sodomize that with a jackhammer.


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