Installing Windows XP into a Virtual Box VM

I need to do some testing, so let’s try installing Windows XP Pro into a Virtual Box VM to avoid trashing my production system. Which is pretty trashed anyway, and has a big frosty pre-ordered (cheap) Windows 7 waiting when I finally get around to researching a driver for my now non-supported HP LaserJet 3150 MFP – but that is another time…

Fire up VirtualBox and create a new VM. I picked the defaults except for 512M of RAM – gotta be careful to not run anything else – set the CDROM to physical drive E, and a growable HD 8Gb. The usual.

Now boot the new VM with the XP Pro SP3 CD (slipstreamed from the SP2 CD). It does its thing, and hit a certain point while it is loading drivers and locks. Hard. Click the close (X) button, VBox asks do I want to reset the VM? Sure. It locks. Hard. I try to kill all the processes and then restart VBox. There is a conflict with an open semaphore file, so I check again and sure enough there is still a VBox process, which cannot be killed. I shut down, Explorer disappears. Luckily a Task Manager box is still up. Finally the “Shutting down Windows” message comes up. Off to Candlelight Ski in Rush Creek. Three hours later, it is still shutting down. I figure most of the stuff has been saved at this point – reset button it is. Now boots ok. Whew.

The message implied some driver was not cooperating, and I questioned the USB stuff. So I run through the options and turn off any non-vital hardware. Audio, USB, no 3D acceleration. Restart the VM and the install. Now (the upgrade) asks for a previous version CD. Find my copy of Windows NT 4.0 Workstation. Yes.

Set networking to Bridged and run the install. Works great.

Moral: turn off all the extra hardware. You can add it later. Or not. I sure don’t need to.

It’s Hard to Be Legal – Sheet Music Edition

So I wanted to buy the sheet music for “Lust” by Tori Amos. I love the piano music and wanted to learn it – to play, not to sing.

I started with Google, found several music sites, and prepared to pay. Seems to be about $4.50. Ok, I can deal with that.

Started with I had purchased “Time out of Mind” by Steely Dan and “Holly and the Ivy” by George Winston using the Solara viewer from FreeHand Music. They don’t have the piece. Fair enough.

Then off to Musicroom, where I found the pience, changed currency to USD then signed up, and then found that I could not by that item from the US. Thanks for telling me up front! I love wasting time!

Then finally, I did a new Google search, found Musicnotes.com and installed yet another stupid viewer. I was able to finally purchase it and print it. What a waste of time.

Until the publishers and artists finally decide to let us get whatever we want whenever we want it EASILY for a fair price, the piracy will continue. In the meantime, have fun in bankruptcy.

Burnt Teapot

So I started the teapot up today, and went downstairs to check one thing. Ten minutes later I came up and there was no whistle. After checking the teapot, there was no water.

With our old crappy teapot, I wouldn’t care. Let it cool down, whatever. Of course this teapot is a 19/10 stainless teapot from the Eva Zeisel by Chantal collection, interestingly no longer sold (although the enamel clad one is). We inherited it from Aunt Lynn, and she liked nice stuff, and it is beautiful. After I cooked it, not so much.

Eva Zeisel by Chantal teakettle
This is the teakettle I destroyed.
It was discolored about two inches up from the bottom, with some burnt spots of something all over. It just got really hot, and burnt every piece of dirt on it. SO I started Googling and found from Chantal’s Use & Care:

If water has been boiled dry from the teakettle TURN OFF HEAT and do not remove teakettle until it has cooled. Leaving a dry teakettle on a hot burner can melt enamel/aluminum base and damage the teakettle and burner. This could be a possible source of fire.

Nice. The flame was on real low, since I knew I wasn’t sitting there, so maybe the damage is not bad. Another post recommended Bar Keeper’s Friend. It has saved me before, as it is a very nice fine abrasive. Another post says the metal is damaged beyond repair, and the wife will kill me. Well, the post didn’t really say that, I did.

So I started polishing with some BKF with a few drops of water, and used my clean hands. Luckily, most of the discoloration came off, except near the bottom, probably where the heat was highest. Good thing I a) caught it soon, and b) used low heat. Some of the burnt crust came off too, so it really looks good now.

The teakettle itself is nice, but not as functional as the cheapy. You could operate the cheapy with one hand, you need to remove the Chantal plug with your hand without getting burned by steam. Get used to it. It does not whistle reliably, either. B**ch, b**ch, b**ch.

Mockito and void methods on mock objects

SO I have
class TestFoo {

}
TestFoo s1 = Mockito.mock(TestFoo.class);
TestFoo s2 = Mockito.mock(TestFoo.class);

The Mockito doc “Real Partial Mocks” says to do this:

when(mock.someMethod()).thenCallRealMethod();

we get the error

“The method when(T) in the type Mockito is not applicable for the arguments (void)”

After 1/2 hour of hunting I found a hint, and refactored:

Mockito.doCallRealMethod().when(s1).assertEquals(s2);