Friday, July 18, 2014

Last Chance!

I will close down my offer of chapters one through three, starting tomorrow morning. That means you have about 24 hours to send me a simple email at thurianknight at gmail dot com, with the subject [Balfrith sample], requesting the sample.

I do ask that you send me your comments as you read the sample, or after you have finished reading it. I don't need any kind of formal review -- just let me know what you like, or don't like, and why.

In other news, I got my old laptop setup with Windows XP SP2. The biggest challenge was getting drivers. Even though this is a Dell laptop (D830), it's from about 2008 and the Dell website only had a limited number of drivers available for download. Fortunately, I was able to get the video driver, audio driver, and network driver -- the three most important things for gaming (Steam requires an Internet connection).

The second biggest challenge is pretty funny actually: Windows XP w/SP2 shipped with Internet Explorer version 6. I was amazed to discover how few websites actually work with IE6. At all. There were JavaScript errors up the wazoo, which caused page load failures, failures to load embedded content, ad infinitum. I was not able to use Microsoft's own website to download later versions of IE, let alone any service packs or use Windows Update. I tried to download Google Chrome, but Google's Chrome download page refused to load correctly (pretty sure it was JavaScript related). Finally I tried Mozilla Firefox and was able to download that. Then I used FireFox to find manual downloads of IE7 and IE8 at CNet, as well as Service Pack 3 from Microsoft, and get all those downloaded and installed. Once I had IE 8 installed, I was able to use Windows Update with Microsoft's website to download all the available security updates. They may not be actively supporting Windows XP, but at least you can still use Windows Update to get all security patches up to date as of earlier this year. I think I finally quit at a little after midnight on Saturday, with the laptop downloading one last round of updates and the Steam game that started this whole odyssey.

And on Sunday morning, I was able to play. :-)