I'm presenting at the Microsoft Academic Faculty Summit 2004 on Monday, so what's the worst possible thing that could happen late Friday afternoon ? - yep, you guessed it, a total machine meltdown, I have no clue what happened, I was uninstalling ActiveSync 3.7.1 to install a "dogfood" build of ActiveSync - the uninstall froze and could only be killed through task manager, the hard drive was going nuts... Once I killed the A/S uninstall most of the contents of my hard drive had gone missing (good job all my current projects are tucked up safely in SourceSafe) - Add/Remove programs still showed everything as being installed - most of the programs I wanted to "repair" or "re-install" wouldn't.

So now it's about 8:30pm on Friday night, and I need a fully operational laptop for Monday morning - and, I'm moving offices next week (over to building 118) so also need to finish packing - everything just seems to happen at once, right ?

There's nothing for it but to wipe the Toshiba M200 and re-install everything from the ground up... me thinks this is going to be a long night... How does that make me feel? a bit like this I guess

The total install time from O/S through to all the development tools was about eight hours - I made it home at about 4:30am - I'm thinking there must be a better way to do this... I might spent a few of your earth hours pulling a mixture of ScriptIt and a host app together to see if I can automate a complete machine install from a product server - eMbedded Visual C++, Platform Builder, Virtual PC 2004, Windows XP Embedded, Visual SourceSafe etc... - the number of times I need to re-image machines for conferences this tool would be a lifesaver... I will let you know how I get on...

Oh, and the worst thing about the whole incident... Starbucks doesn't open until 5am !!!

- Mike