Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Amazing Kindness and Hope from TinyApps Blog

Another very long day on the battlements but I can’t bear to keep this post held back any longer.

I’m the type of guy who expects little to nothing in return from others, and loves to give all I have to the betterment of those same others.  I also hold deeply to a “mono no aware” perspective towards life.

So it was with amazement that back (almost a month ago) that I got an simple email from the ever warm and thoughtful Miles at his TinyApps.Org Blog.

Miles wanted to know if I would be interested in adopting his SysInternals Video Library set.

Ummm….Heck yeah!

We have corresponded a bit over the years and share a like for portable applications and software that just makes sense without all the fluff and bloatage packed in there.  Unfortunately due to the cheapness of USB drives with ever larger space, my collection of “tiny apps” has grown quite large and it is a struggle to manage…although they are still fairly small on an individual level.  What I value most are those non-install versions of software.

Anyway.  After I picked myself up off the floor a couple of times I sent a profusely (I hope) thick-with-gratitude response back taking Miles up on the offer.

They arrived in the Valca mailbox on September the 11th.  I unboxed them and also found a beautiful card enclosed as well.  Our small household just glowed with the excitement…not just because of the joy and learning the video lessons would bring, but also for the incredible act of kindness displayed to us.

I put them on the living room mantle in a place of honor with plans to watch them during what looked to be like a rainy weekend for our area as Ike made his way onshore further down the Texas coast.

The very next day, Lavie and I had packed up the car and evacuated northward to her parents house and we watched and waited with horror as Ike eventually made a direct and devastating hit on our city.

A week later I returned home (all was mostly well) for the first time since we left, changed clothes and took a cold shower (power wasn’t restored until almost a week later) and headed into work.  Our incredible IT team has been working non-stop with no days off putting in 12-14 hour days every day, despite a flood of personal challenges and stories from every team-member.

So the DVD’s have remained safely tucked away on my bookshelf still waiting for our Ike IT recovery efforts to slow down.

I can’t wait to have the time to watch them.  TinyApps probably didn’t realize just how much of a symbol of hope and inspiration they have been to me over the past difficult weeks.

They started out as an incredible act of generosity and kindness, fresh from the paradise of Hawaii.  They became a symbol of hope as Lavie and I wondered for a week if they (and our home) survived the hurricane.  Now they have become the symbolic Champaign bottle that I go over and look at every few days and smile knowing that when our recovery efforts (personally and professionally) are over, they will be a reward of sorts (in a geeky way) for efforts well done.

Sysinternals Goodies – by the boatload!

While waiting for them to arrive and inspired by Miles, I took with renewed vigor to the Web to dig up any new Sysinternals Goodies.  Here’s what I have found since that time.

Windows Internals Book – Microsoft Technet.

Amazingly, this notice on the next installment of Windows Internals by Mark Russinovich (Windows® Internals: Including Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista, Fifth Edition) contains five wonderful links to Vista-related Technet posts as well as a PDF version of a chapter preview in all its wonder.  Book is scheduled for a January 08 release.

The preview chapter of the new book covers Management Mechanisms including Registry, Services and WMI.: Windows Internals Chapter 4 (PDF). It’s an incredible 67 page teaser!

It’s pretty evident that this new tome on Vista is bound to immediately become Vista canon.

In fact, I was so inspired by this that I found that Amazon has the previous edition of Windows Internals on sale, so I’ve finally ordered it tonight as well.  Should be in next week at the latest!

Mark’s Blog : The Case of the Slooooow System – Mark also has posted a new detective story in which he tracks down issues on his #1 customer’s (wife) pc.  I really enjoyed this one because not only did I recognize some of the process names he was investigating, but he goes beyond the processes and shows how the underlying threads hold the real power and clues.

Coreinfo - (freeware) - This new command-line utility from Sysinternals shows the mapping between the logical processors of the system and the physical processor, NUMA node, and socket on which they reside.  Also the cache assigned to each logical processor.  Just for geeks and developers but cool all the same.

Process Monitor - (freeware) - Stop and go download this new version 2.0 release right now. Done? OK what you just got is as follows: “This major update to Process Monitor adds real-time TCP and UDP monitoring to its existing process, thread, DLL, file system and registry monitoring. You can now see the TCP and UDP activity processes performed, including the operation (e.g. connect, send, receive), local and remote IP addresses and DNS names, and operation transfer lengths. On Windows Vista, Process Monitor also collects thread stacks for network operations.”

Signing off for now…

So the delay in this big public thanks (hope TinyApps doesn’t mind) isn’t because of any lack of appreciation or manners, but only because of a lack of time, sleep, and life due to Ike and our efforts to rebuild our customers’ (and our own) lives again.  Heck.  It wasn’t until two days ago that I was finally able to reconnect our desktop system for the very first time since I left on September the 11th.  Hard to believe it has been that long ago….

From a battered but still standing Valca homestead on the Texas Gulf Coast shouting back to Hawaii…

Mahalo nui loa



Nathaniel said...

Wow, what a nice gift... be sure to post some stuff once you manage to get some time in front of the tube. By the way, what exactly is your job? I see it must be IT related somehow, but otherwise...

Miles said...

Aloha, Claus!

So the delay in this big public thanks (hope TinyApps doesn’t mind)

Don't be silly! There is no need for thanks of any kind - your excellent posts are more than thanks enough! I am just so grateful and relieved that you guys made it through the storm!

Yours Sincerely,