I’ve been downloading a couple Open-Source operating systems over the weekend.

By “over the weekend” I don’t mean that I downloaded one on Friday night and the other Saturday afternoon. I mean that I started two on Friday and one is 30% done and the other is 9% done.

Comcast has been very annoying lately. If I didn’t know any better, I’d wonder if they cut me off except (a) it seems extremely unlikely that I downloaded 250GB, (b) they’re supposed to call if that’s the case, it’s been spotty rather than down and (d) Today a new month started, so I should be back up and running.

So I’m a little piqued at Comcast. I’m also piqued at one of the people I’m downloading from. Sometimes companies will want you do downloading through an install file. In other words, you download some dinky file, after which that dinky file downloads the 4GB file. This is annoying because it means I have to download it once per install. So I can’t just download it once and install it in as many places as I like. This would make sense if it were a for-profit app, but the dang thing is free. But even that I could put up with if their downloading application didn’t suck.

To software developers: If you’re going to make me download something through your application, make your application good. Don’t let it freak out in the event of a stalled connection. Allow pause-resume. Break it up into little bits. Do something that doesn’t require me to have my laptop hooked up upstairs (cause I can’t trust wireless) for days on end because my internet connection is irregular. Comcast may suck, but this is hardly the first time that I have been in this situation, a lot of Comcast users in the Zaulem Sound area are in this position (taking a poll from work), and a lot of people all across the country are in this position.

That’s one of the two providers. The other I’m downloading directly from my friend Tony. Tony can’t be bothered to put it somewhere that I can download it with a utility that allows resumption after a broken connection. Since he’s doing me a solid I guess I shouldn’t complain. On the other hand, he’s the one always pestering me to give Linux a shot.


Category: Server Room

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2 Responses to Long Downloads

  1. Brandon Berg says:

    Sometimes companies will want you do downloading through an install file. In other words, you download some dinky file, after which that dinky file downloads the 4GB file.

    I’ve heard of that being done with applications, but never with an OS. Which OS is it? And why can’t you use BitTorrent for the one you’re downloading from Tony?

    Linux is arguably the best text editor in existence. I wouldn’t recommend it for much else, though.

  2. trumwill says:

    Well, it’s more a GUI than an OS. It’s the KDE for Windows. I’ve been looking for OSes and Shells as an alternative to Windows because of how inadequate Windows is on my old school television (and MCE doesn’t work on the computer in question). I tried Litestep over the weekend and that was a disaster far worse than it had previously been. So I’m re-aquainting myself with Linux in part to give MythTV a shot. While looking for other shells, I stumbled on the fact that KDE was working towards a Windows version. So now I’m curious about that for its own sake. I installed Ubuntu on Friday and played with it over the weekend. Ran into some problems and Tony suggested that I go with his prefered distro, Mandriva. Whenever I’ve decided to give Linux another shot, I seem to rotate between the two of them.

    The version of Linux that Tony has is more complete than what I could download due to some licensing issues. At the rate I’m going, it’ll be less trouble to go find the things not included in the general distro (codecs being a big example, as well as various bits of software).

    My experience with Linux has thus far been okay, but it’s still pretty far from prime time and they still have too much of the “You need to change the way you do things to out way of doing things” rather than giving me ways to approximately do with Linux what I already do with Windows. The good news is that I am working it out on an otherwise useless laptop, so having it installed and learning about it at a leisurely pace costs me nothing. Even so, I don’t want to have to babysit downloads.

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