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A tale of my mother in laws laptop

So, yesterday, my mother in law moved into my house to stay with us for awhile. (Yes this is cool with me, it was actually my idea.. Anyway.)

She handed me her laptop, Sony Vaio (this thing is a freaking brick!), loaded with Windows XP, she always makes jokes about my network here at the house, and about how “clean” it probably is (all macs, security etc..) So I went about starting to clean it.

First, I wanted to get the antivirus updates. She had a current Antivirus client (Symantec), it was the full suite, with the firewall and everything. So I updated that, took awhile as it hasn’t been updated in awhile.

-- Sidebar --

My mother in law has been on dialup in her neighborhood where she used to live for a long time. She doesn’t log in for long, long enough to log into her AOL account and check her email and some light surfing.. (yes AOL. Seriously.)

So you can imagine, everything hasn’t been updated in a long time because of the speed of her connection, she doesn’t have the kind of time to sit there and let downloads download overnight.

-- Back to my Story --

The Antirvirus ran, asked me if I wanted to deal with the stuff in Quarantine. I looked what it was, 3 instances of “Bloodhound.Exploit” in Temp Internet files. Okay, not a big deal, they’ve been quarantined for over a year, so I just deleted them. Hopefully that’s all it finds.

So I started to download XP updates. This is really where I started to value my Macs. This machine was pre Service Pack 3, Windows XP. So you know the drill, get the updates up to date so you can download SP3, then download SP3, then install that, then update, update, update, update. I had to go to Windows Update at least 5 or 6 times. Office was actually updated, but the Windows OS updates were so far behind it took me 6 hours to get this thing updated.

Now, I know when you build a fresh Mac install you have to do the same thing. But it only takes me about 20 minutes to do it, not 6 hours.

I started telling my tale, as I was going, to my followers on Twitter. A lot of jokes were made, you know, about making the laptop a doorstop, or if I had a table with one short leg, go ahead and prop up the table with it.

Other suggestions were made like, “load Ubuntu on it, tell your mother in law it’s the new version of XP”. I thought about it, but my mother in law is just one of those kinds of people who get comfortable with her computing experience and you don’t want to upset that. She like her XP, and Microsoft Word, so I don’t want to mess with her right now, maybe she’ll get a mac on her next computer buying experience.

Anyway, it’s fully updated and working now, yes, it’s on my network, as much as I hate to admit it. (It’s the first Windows machine on my network in about 6 years.)

Hopefully now, I can keep her patched and updated.


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