Upgrade question

Robert Ian Smit robian at wanadoo.nl
Thu Oct 3 16:36:16 PDT 2002

* Tony Karakashian <tonyk at rochestermidland.com> [03-10-2002 23:26]:
> Unfortunately, that isn't always 100% possible.  ERP is one field,
> for example, where it is almost impossible to get locked in.  It's
> just such an immense "thing", no matter what you choose, it's a 
> lot of effort to get out  of.  Even if you create a complete
> solution from scratch, after a few years of kluges and patches,
> moving away is a process (as is the case with our current Oracle
> systems).

You want the magical blackbox to be as small as possible. In my
experience the largest part of IT costs come from supporting and
"hopefully replacing soon" these types of system. But I realize it
is inevitable in almost all companies with a more than trivial

> Yes, and no.  Remember, Word, for example, is such a feature-laden
> product because it's driven by the marketplace.  

That sounds an awful lot like marketing speak to me. Anyway, the
more features the merrier. However it gets ugly when features start
biting each other in the ass.

> To this day, I still have no idea if it can even be done in Word,
> which is the main reason I keep it.  I keep it to remind me that
> what the users want comes first.

Did you not start out somewhere in the engine room? Being a BOFH is
sometimes required. I like to help people, but sometimes you really
need to play dirty to get forward.

> Why not?  All of my stuff is stored on my file servers, here and at
> the office.  I can use it on my Linux boxen, my Mac or my Windows
> PCs.  

You can, but a lot of people have lost data by inexplicable
"feature" upgrades.

Let me give a bit of circumstantial evidence:

I am sure we were the dumbos, but getting Outlook mail into a
new installation on a newer version of Windows, was not fun at all.
Perhaps the marketplace does not want a feature like that, but
searching the registry for a file name and then overwriting that
file with the old dbx (or something) is just crap. 

Perhaps I should have used the Microsoft Certified File Transfer
Wizard or something like that to start with, but after "format c:"
you lose options rather quickly.


> No, but it does need to do exactly everything it does, it doesn't
> matter to me if it does it differently.  

A philosophical reply is needed here, but let's not get pedantic.

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