Tuesday, October 12 2004
Since there was no way easy way tell what was wrong with it in the field, I had to bring that New Paltz computer I mentioned yesterday home with me. In the leisure environment of the laboratory I could go over it carefully, investigation which files in C:\WINDOWS and C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM had recent modification dates. Nothing I did to the computer could get the internet working, but network's DHCP server was giving the computer an IP address and I was able to connect to other computers on the network (though not through web protocols). My suspicions focused on several recently-modified files in C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM: DQNDL.DLL, MXTCP.DLL, and CRYPT32.DLL. MXTCP.DLL was especially suspicious. What could it be doing? TCP in a "mixed up" kind of way? Mexican-style TCP perhaps? With great difficulty, I managed to delete it from the command line while in MS-DOS mode, but still I couldn't get the internet to function. I finally had to give up and do a fresh install of the operating system (Windows 98) in a brand new folder. By this point I was so frustrated with inserting and withdrawing CDs and the repeated typing of registration codes that I started slamming the CD tray into the computer with considerable force. I slammed the CD tray so hard at one point (zzzzzp!) that my Windows 98 CD somehow ended up with a vicious tear in its precious silver backing and I had to burn a brand new one. There's a lot of extra room on a Windows 98 installation CD, so I included lots of additional stuff, including Mozilla and a complete Windows 95 installation. I almost never encounter Windows 95 these days, but I'll be ready next time I do.
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