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skillz -- I haz them 
27th-Sep-2009 05:26 pm

The W-98 laptop I've been using as the host for the scanner is ... old. The monitor isn't really attached to the base any more, and sometimes doesn't work. It's very slow, and when I try to defrag it, it hangs.

Recently, I brought my older, slower, desktop machine (I installed W2k Pro atop W97) down. Hooked it up. Just wouldn't work. Diddled this, diddled that, reconnected everything, and finally I got the monitor to work. And I learned that "beep-beep beep" means that there are problems in the CMOS. The battery is ... low. So I have to make it auto-detect each time I boot (but I have a monitor!). What I don't have is a mouse. All of my mice are hiding. In my impatient way, I bought a trackball for half again what it would have cost from the manufacturer (had I know where to go and what to look for) -- which ... didn't work. The CD that came with it insisted that it wasn't compatible with the OS. (Yeah, not Vista or XP.) I went to the web site as suggested (painful -- (1) I needed to use IE, (2) if I went in the most obvious way, the support/download site didn't have any links on it, but the other way it had the critical info...), downloaded the (40 M) driver-set, put it onto a CD, and tried to install that. Bad OS. Ah. It works with 2K - SP 4.

I have SP 3.

I have an old keyboard, so I don't have a magic windows key -- so to get to the control panel I had to 3-finger-it, go to task manager, choose "new task", type explorer, and from there navigate using the arrow and tab keys. I turned on the "just go get updates" (it had told me there were some, but I couldn't click in the balloon to say "install now"). Restarted a few times -- nothing. Feh. Used the previous technique and explored to google, hit Windows 2k sp4, and a page came up. About 57 tabs later, I could download the file. (Couldn't figure out how to create a new folder, but I put it in an existing one.) Launched it.

It suggested I back everything up. I declined. It said that if I'd ever want to undo this, I need to devote much space to undo files -- I declined that too. If this doesn't work -- well, this computer just isn't useful.

I launched it, and using tab, space, arrow, and enter, made all the choices I needed to.

Ok, now I tried to install the thing I'd brought down on a CD. It's not fast, but it IS installing.

And after a long time of that, and rebooting, I HAVE A POINTER!!! And it moves when it should.

As proud as I am that I can do so much on a computer without a mouse, I'm VERY happy to have one for those things that just don't have work-arounds.

Now to find out if this computer is burly enough to drive the scanner, and if it has enough room on it to save images...
28th-Sep-2009 05:35 am (UTC)
Way to go!
2nd-Oct-2009 07:47 am (UTC)
I salute your patience and persistence. I'd have done gravity tests with it about the time I had to remember 3-finger commands... I'm spoiled and forgetful, and I admit it. ;)

Well done!
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