Archives / 2005 / April
  • Rhapsody on Windows Server 2003

    Rhapsody just released an updated version that installs (and works!) on Windows 2003.

    Funny thing, that Rhapsody. It's owned by Real, which many consider to be the devil, but it's just so good. You'd like to avoid it, but you just can't. Take the bad with the good, I guess.

  • 250 * x64 = 25

    From Thurrott's WinHEC blog:

    The MSN Messenger server farm handles over 70 million concurrent sessions every single day. Until recently, they were using 250 32-bit servers to manage that load. When they switched to Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition running on x64 hardware, they reduced the size of the farm to just 25 servers.
    How cool is that?

    I've used XP x64 on and off at home for the past year or so, and finally switched to full time when it went gold. Honestly, the only perceivable difference between it and the 32-bit variety is the lack of printer drivers. But that was expected. I'm not a gamer and I don't do any crazy audio/video editing, so I'm really only doing it to feel the bleeding-edge pain. (Windows doesn't bluescreen or get in the way like the good old days, so I've got to do something to keep it real.)

    I got my hopes up a couple weeks ago when we picked up an x64-capable Dell build machine, only to find out that they didn't have x64 RAID (F6) drivers. Maybe next time..

    Dell is now supporting x64.

  • 32-bit registry access from WSH script running in x64 Windows

    We use a hybrid approach for pulling the latest "good" binaries to our machines every day. A VBS bootstrapper starts the process, and one of the things it does is check the registry. Sounds reasonable, right? It was for the past few years, but now there's a problem when running this script on a 64-bit OS: It doesn't find the registry values.

    64-bit Windows uses a number of things to make 32-bit apps live happily in a 64-bit world. One of these is the registry redirector. Simply, the OS gives 32-bit apps their own view of certain parts of the Windows registry, including HKLM\Software. Our VBS file looks for a value that's added by the .NET installer, which is a 32-bit process. The gotcha is that VBS files are associated with the 64-bit wscript.exe, so when it runs and looks for the value insterted by the 32-bit .NET installer, it can't find it.

    Luckily, a 32-bit version of wscript is included in the %windir%\SysWOW64 directory. Launching a VBS with this version will give you access to the 32-bit sections of registry.

  • Fun with stock images

    This happens so often that it shouldn't be funny, but it is (to me).

    The image above is from a course about 64-bit Windows from Microsoft's new eLearning website. As you can tell from the titles, this page is about using VS.NET 2003 with 64-bit Windows. The woman is using a Mac.