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The Difference Engine: Linux's Achilles heel

Nov 15, 2010, 22:32 (6 Talkback[s])

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[ Thanks to Marcus Sortijas for this link. ]

"TO LOSE one hard drive during a busy week may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose two looks like carelessness. Both had been churning away, day in day out, for years—one in an elderly Windows workhorse, the other in an equally old Linux machine. Having two hard drives fail within days of one another seemed more than coincidence. Ambient temperatures were higher than usual that week, which may have hastened their demise. The fact remains, however, that hard drives tend to die either in infancy or in grand old age, usually as a result of something mechanical wearing out or breaking internally. One of the geriatric drives in question actually gave a few rasping gasps before giving up the ghost. The other passed away silently in the night. Coincidence or whatever, it appears their time had simply come.

"A more interesting question, though, concerned not why they had failed, but how best to get the two computers up and running again. Above all, your correspondent was keen to see how the installation of the two respective operating systems would compare—and which was, when everything was taken into account, the better of the two. One machine would have Windows XP Pro with its SP3 service pack re-installed; the other would get the latest Linux Mint 9 distribution instead of the much earlier version of the free desktop operating system used before."

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