[OS X TeX] OT: TeX for windows

Stephan Hochhaus stephan at yauh.de
Sat Aug 14 12:57:41 EDT 2004

Although I fear this is going into a very OT direction ;-)

>> wants is success. It's not. What the sys admin wants is secondary to 
>> the needs of the instructors and the students. I'd raise hell over 
>> that attitude. If that's how they do their job, it's time to get rid 
>> of the sys admin. Think of the opportunity... with Macs, you could 
>> even do it yourself!
It's a little more complicated than that. We're "guests" in that 
specific computer lab, at least that's what the owning faculty and 
sysadmin think. But then again, "we" offer classes for "them", whoever 
"we" and "they" are is not so easily explainable (as Bruno already 
hinted at, it's a European, excuse me, German thing ;-))

> I don't exactly know what the situation of Stephan is, so maybe I'm 
> completely off-base, but I would say the situation that Stephan is 
> facing is something specifically European. Think bureaucracy, big 
> scale. Think you're working in an administration (research, 
> educational), the sysadmin is not somebody you hired, he/she's 
> somebody appointed by some other governmental office, you can't do 
> anything if you're not happy with what's done, you have have to cope 
> with the person that is sent to fill this job.
Well, he actually was hired and he could be fired as well. 
Theoretically. Fact is, that our university evolves a lot more around 
institutions and profs than students. So as long as there are no or few 
complaints by important people (I am not talking LaTeX teachers or 
students here) nothing is going to change.
But I will still have to speak to him, maybe he will agree to creating 
an account for me so I can install things in class.

> I've been faced with exactly the same kind of sysadmin as Stephan. A 
> person believing truly his mission was to take over all the computers 
> in my department. Uninstalling XP, for example, on all Windows 
> desktops, to replace it by Win 2000, because he had Linux tools to 
> work with 2000, not XP.
Yes, they do weird things. When this worm attack was at its peak, he 
started to install personal firewalls on every computer, more virus 
scanners and everything you could think of just to have safe computers. 
Now they are as slow as your average aged windows machine gets. That 
wouldn't be a problem per se, but given that they actually have a 
working system of "cloning" the entire hd of every pc in the lab from 
the server on the click of your mouse within minutes (or even having 
this automated every time the pc starts up) was not even considered an 
option. The consequence of his security paranoia (which is partly 
justified) is that we're stuck with very basic software setup. No 
option to install everything and holding a weekend seminar where you're 
missing most of a programms feature has already happened a couple of 
times in the past...

Therefore (to get on topic again) a solution that will run off a cd is 
very much preferred :-)


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