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Thursday, November 3, 2011

Lion Misery... Step by Step (Part II)

So with XCode as a Mac Store App there is no way to have multiple versions.  Currently I have both 3.2.6 and 4.0 XCode on the same machine.  I have written extensively about the misery of XCode 4 and its friends.  I expect this new Mac App model to make things even worse.

(A quick test of XCode 4.2 yields endless stupid errors on working, production software that XCode 3.2.6 happily builds error free.  Ultimately the build craps out in clang with an error 254 - what ever that is...  Thanks Apple...  Personally I think these GCC/LLVM developers have way too much time on their hands and are more worried about fixing stupid shit than makeing something that's actually useful to a real commercial developer.)

I run two independent WiFi networks in my office.  One is the "inside" version and one is the "outside."  "Inside" runs the various externally visible servers, e.g.,  When on that network outside URL to inside sites, e.g., lexigraph, do not resolve because they are local addresses.  I could fix this by altering the host files but instead, mostly for reasons related to debugging and testing, I have a second "outside" WiFi that looks at my inside equipment as if its someone like one of my customers.  This lets me see both sides of my external company view on the internet.

Of course 10.6 Snow Leopard lets you easily switch between the two: you just select the WiFi icon in the menu bar and, if you let the mouse hover over the icon, it finds all the WiFi networks.

Not so on Lion.

Lion seems to boot to the network it saw when it was first booted and spoke with mother Apple.  It will then switch to the other network - but not switch back...  In order to switch back you have to turn off the WiFi and then restart it.

How nice is that?

I've been wanting to get rid of a bunch of old equipment I have lying around - some old G5 servers and a bunch of old FireWire drives.  The idea was to consolidate all this onto a new WiFi set of disks and onto the new laptop.  So I hook the old FireWire disks up to the mask and start copying things to the WiFi and onto the laptop.

But oh wait!  Another Lion issue.

It looks like if you start one copy from a mounted FireWire drive to somewhere it stalls a second copy (which just sits there until the first is completed).  So if the first copy is a slow one all the rest from that drive seem to hang.

So far my audio and MIDI devices seem to have Lion drivers - though I am going to guess that Logic 9 is going to have to run as 32 bits.  There are also issues with 32 versus 64 bits for Audio Units.  That will have to be sorted later.

Disk copying and time estimating (that appears under the progress bar) seems more accurate.  But that means when you first start a copy it tells you it will take days to complete - though as things speed up and get going that turns into a useful number.  I am not sure how seeing a copy will take 21 days (10 Gb over FireWire) is all that useful.  The time seems to update with each chuck of copying so grinding things down to a better estimate takes as long as the copy does.

I am still pissing with the stupid scrolling.   You use two fingers to simulate the iOS-style of moving the text under your fingers.  After a day or so of use you get the hang of having two fingers to drag stuff (the scroll bars still do work in Lion).  But at least I tend to drag them the wrong way - since I am near the top this causes nothing to happen - so there is the briefest confusion as your brain attempts to figure out why nothing is happening before it tells your fingers to move the right way...


The searching in the Finder window is broken again.  It always (I could never find a way to defeat this) looks for files containing the words you type in.  I always want it search for file names - not contents.  In 10.6 it would bring up a little bar under the title area and you could easily fix this.  Not so in Lion, you have to struggle to get the search by name working.

Lion also does a weird thing with changing file or folder names on local drives (like "Macintosh HD").  For 10.6 and previous if you type in a new name it just sticks in the new name immediate.  Now, Lion seems to have to think about changing the name so when your done renaming something it goes back to the old name for about one second - then suddenly the new name pops in.

Its far worse on some types of remote drives.

There's also this new, jumping copy thing.  Say I have a window open and want to drag three different files into another folder.  Prior to Lion you would do this and when the drag started the files would have the positions relative to each other they did in the starting folder.  In Lion they all jump around into a group under your cursor.

This is nothing but distracting.

More Ugh!

The developers at Apple really don't seem to understand the idea that a developer wants things consistent.  If the code compiled before it ought to compile now.  If you want more error checking in the compiler then give me the option to upgrade my compile.  Not the reverse.  To me this means that the LLVM compiler is just randomly different than GCC in a variety of unknown and untestable areas - areas I will have to visit and test - doing the compiler developers work for them.

While Lion so far is usable its full of gratuitous changes that are unnecessary.  I am sure that's to sell things to people to make money.  Not because they are good things.

This is an interesting and different model than Microsoft.

Right away MS got the idea that billions of people where using their stuff and to break things would only make their lives hell.  Apple is too arrogant - they are smart and know better than you what you want.

Well at least I've gotten all the old drives cleaned up and stuff off them and onto the new computer.

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