Going from Win2000 Dell to WinNT MPro...What are my concerns?

Discussion in 'Computers' started by MarkHastings, Jul 7, 2003.

  1. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    My Win2000 computer (A Dell Dimension 8100) is having major difficulties with it's hardware, so I am having it replaced. My company can't afford a new one right now so they are giving me an IBM-MPro loaded with WinNT. Our current AVID systems have been updated and all of the MPro's (which they were using for the AVIDs) are being distributed to those who need new computers.

    I am more of a Mac person and I have been learning a bit about PCs for the past 6 years now. I have never used NT because I used to hear horror stories about it being incompatible with a lot of the programs I use. I mostly work with apps like Photoshop, Premiere, Illustrator, Media Cleaner, Dreamweaver, Director, Quark XPress, and Flash.

    What issues do I have to look out for? Our IT guy said that anything that runs on my Win2000 system will work on the NT. Is that true?

    I always thought that USB wasn't compatible with NT (or was that a long time ago?). Can I also use my Firewire card? Isn't there also certain video issues? Like, do Windows Media Video files play on NT? I thought I read that they weren't.

    Hopefully I can find out these issues in advance before I get the system and run into nightmares.
     
  2. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    I used NT 4 for a long time (starting in 1997), and am now using Win2000 Pro (which is actually NT 5 for all practival purposes). NT 4 was a pretty solid OS in its day (especially for businesses), but going from Win2000 back to NT is going to be painful.
     
  3. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    Also realize that NT4.0 has a much smaller base of support for AGP.. NT4.0 made it's appearance before AGP existed.. it wasn't until SP3 that AGP support came into being. Even with SP6a, there are numerous hardware issues that you may run into.. as mentioned, no support for USB, non-existant firewire support, and NT4.0 does not support DirectX of any sort.

    Firewire support is -very- sketchy. Technically, there are means to do it, but in reality, the support is not there. This is due to the fact that Firewire in an NT 4.0 environment is treated as a SCSI attached device.. which makes it hard to recognize or use if you are trying to do video capture.

    Some of the applications you listed will also run into hitches. Dreamweaver MX and Flash MX will not run in NT 4 (regardless) nor will Photoshop 7. You need to be running Flash4/Dreamweaver4 and Photoshop 6 or earlier to have any success.

    If you do any work with DiVX or many other CODECS (like newer Apple Quicktime or MPEG4) you have no support in NT4.0 at all, as Mediaplayer 6.4 is as high as it goes.

    NT4.0 also has the file size limitation, even under SP6a related to video capture streams (AVI's must be smaller then 4GB) because of this.

    So, keep all that in mind.
     
  4. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Thanks for the ammo guys. I am having real issues with this new IT guy. He thinks he's a know-it-all! [​IMG]

    I keep trying to make better suggestions to my boss but she won't listen to me because this idiot is the "IT Guy" and he is perfect in her eyes [​IMG]

    Hopefully this will be some good info to use against his dumb decisions. [​IMG]
     
  5. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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  6. JamesHl

    JamesHl Supporting Actor

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    Demand that they upgrade the o/s or give you a different system.
     
  7. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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  8. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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  9. gregstaten

    gregstaten Supporting Actor

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    Mark - get them to update the OS on the MPro. I have an MPro system on my desk (after updating my Avid to one of the new HP beasties) and it runs Windows 2000 without effort. I could probably update it to Windows XP, but haven't gotten around to it yet. I mostly use it for Outlook and Office nowadays doing the heavy lifting work on the XW8000.

    Out of curiosity, did you all upgrade to Media Composer Adrenaline?

    -greg
     
  10. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    I had a talk with the IT guy today and convinced him to install Win2000 on the MPro. I'm still not happy with the way he works, but I am slowly getting my voice heard.

    Although, I did notice that he installed Win2000 over NT, then he ran into some problems and reloaded NT over 2000...or something screwed up like that. When the computer started, you had like 2 choices of NT and 1 Win2000.

    And he had the audacity to say (in a meeting with my boss) that he has worked with systems for 20 years, is certified in NT, and knows what he is doing. [​IMG]

    I also heard (from a co-worker) that he (the IT Guy) said that he couldn't get rid of the NT partitions because Windows 2000 wouldn't allow you to reallocate the partitions.
     
  11. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    Wrong on both counts. What has happened is that, instead of doing an update, he chose the other installation Option, and the NT Boot Loader remains. So, he's seeing these options (I will bet MONEY)

    NT 4.0 Workstation
    NT 4.0 Workstation [VGA MODE]
    WIndows 2000

    In some order (Windows 2000 may be on top if default)

    This isn't the correct install, because normally it means you're still running under a slightly earlier version of NTFS.

    Que Sera, good luck to him, hope he had NT SP6a installed before he did this, because he apparently booted to the CD and did the install, didn't wipe (format) the drive, and left all as it was.. which is definitely not what I would have done

    (I too have done this for about 18 years now, but let's be honest: the crap I did with Apple II, Commodores, and 286s in the eighties really doesn't mean spit, nor does the time working with Sparc 5s in the early nineties.. it's not like every day anyone ever asks me to sort out SRAMs for onboard L2 Cache or some BS like that)
     
  12. JamesHl

    JamesHl Supporting Actor

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    Can you just get him to give you the win2k disc? Just do it yourself, obviously this cat has no idea what he's doing. I wonder how he's made it this long.
     
  13. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    It's super easy to bluff your way around the IT world. Worst case, you can hang in at a position by sheltering yourself crowded by others, pick up an MCSE or A+ through a bootcamp/test by performance without picking up real-world, not in the book knowledge, and find yourself with a nice resume but little actual skill.

    Happens a lot. There are a lot of people with no certifications.. hell, no college degree.. who I would take 9 times out of 10 over someone with both. But, that's hard to convince the corporate world over..

    (just as a thought, though, the kid who runs WorldCom's datacenter did not graduate high school.. so, there you go)
     
  14. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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  15. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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  16. Colin Dunn

    Colin Dunn Supporting Actor

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    Get Windows 2000 cleanly installed on the PC ... as in: reformat the drive, don't install over NT 4. There tend to be lots of problems with 'upgrade installs' because of left-over old registry settings and applications. I have seen successful/stable upgrade installs, but those tend to be on 'pristine' systems that had little other than NT 4/SP6a on them before getting upgraded. Generally, the older the install and the more apps that have been added/removed/changed over that time, the more likely the upgrade will just blow up in your face.

    Microsoft has discontinued support for NT 4 Workstation. That means they will likely not release any more service packs or security hot-fixes for this OS. Given that it was released in 1996 (7 years ago - an eternity in the computer world), I don't think it's too much to expect to run at least Win2K these days.

    The time/money the IT guy will be wasting on problems related to the NT 4 install could buy you the Win2K license. And a good Win2K install can be nearly trouble-free.
     
  17. JamesHl

    JamesHl Supporting Actor

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    If possible, get your coworkers to put in some calls/emails/personal appearances as well. It's better if you don't appear to be annoyed in general about this problem as opposed to being annoyed by his lack of competence; also, there's just power in numbers.
     
  18. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    I'm trying to get the others to speak out. They are too scared to say anything and just let it fester. I actually did convince 2 to register complaints, but I don't know what good it did.

    The big problem is, this guy is our engineer and we are currently in the middle of a major undertaking here. I will admit that the guy knows his video, but he has no clue when it comes to computers. Since the video end is what keeps the company on its feet, management only sees what a good job he is doing with the video part and not seeing the problems he is creating on the computer end (or they don't even care)
     

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