Thursday, September 04, 2008

How long does it take to fix an infected Windows XP computer?

I have a good friend that knows nothing about computer's intrincacies. He had erased many of the essential Widows XP operating system files by mistake and came to me for help. How came?, easy, because Windows permision system is not suited for mainstream home users. It complies with all military standards but sucks when it comes to home computers. Why? Easy, because every single Windows home computer user uses his computer with administrative rights and that's an open door to problems. It has taken me more than one day to fix my friend's computer (a huge amount of money if I was to charge him, but I won't because he's my friend and a nice guy)

Unix, Linux or Mac OSX BSDized operating systems have a much simpler rights management system (at least if you do not activate acls) but it turns to be much more effective for home use because the normal user only adquires administrative privileges when he has to install stuff. It's called impersonation, something that is pretty dumb difficult to achieve in Windows because of military compliance issues. Is it that difficult to keep things simple when they don't need to be sofisticated? I would recommend Steve Balmer to take some Zen lessons from the other Steve (I am thinking of Jobbs of course), maybe then the world would turn round more smoothly and I would devote my time to more pleasent issues.

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