Nuke the Whales

Sometimes my PC problems seem as large as whales. Over time (generally about six months to a year) my new, high speed, computer slows down, reminding me of the performance of my old CPM system running a 4mhz Z-80 and 16K of ram. Never mind that it is a pentium 4, with 1.5 gig clock and 2 gig of ram. If it runs a Microsft operating system of any kind and has access to the internet, it will collect all sorts of garbage data and develop hooks into the system that defy explanation or reason.

No, you don’t restore normal operation by running Microsoft utilities or third party ‘fix-it’ software. The only sure way to restore performance is to delete the partition, wipe the hard disk completely, and start over with a fresh installation. Hence the term ‘Nuke the Whales’.

Over time this process has become easier and easier. Now with hard disk drive cloning software and very reasonably priced hard drives, it has become a trivial and less time consuming task. No longer is each application painfully reloaded and configured. We only have to do that once, then clone the disk drive. Later, when the working drive becomes ill, we just pull out the cloned drive, delete the sick drives partition, and clone the previously sick drive from data on the spare clone drive.

Yes we use a firewall. We also use Tine Personal Firewall, a program that alerts us to software trying to call home. Nowdays it is not just Microsoft who has a sometimes unjustified interest in a users computer and activities. I don’t mind software that checks for updates as long as it asks permission. Software that just takes over the computer and tries to do its own thing usually gets disabled and sometimes deleted. Vendors that pull that kind of privacy abuse are not above other abuse and cannot be trusted. Surprise, surprise, seems that Microsoft is one of the most frequent privacy abusers. Maybe they can play with your machine but I don’t let them into mine if I can help it.

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