View Poll Results: When is the last time you did a bare metal install?

8. You may not vote on this poll
  • In the last month

    1 12.50%
  • In the last three months

    0 0%
  • In the last six months.

    2 25.00%
  • In the last year.

    1 12.50%
  • In the last two years.

    0 0%
  • In the last three or four years.

    1 12.50%
  • Five or more years ago.

    1 12.50%
  • Never.

    2 25.00%
Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    MichaelCorfman's Avatar
    MichaelCorfman is offline GPWA Executive Director
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    Question When is the last time you did a bare metal install?

    With the attack we suffered in October, we decided we couldn't trust anything in our network anymore, and that means we've been doing bare metal installs on every single desktop and server in our network. Personally, I took on the task of rebuilding on the order of 20 windows 10 desktop machines and configuring them with all of the required software for their various users.

    I've never rebuilt a machine starting with a vanilla USB install stick before, and I certainly hope I never have to do 20 of them at once ever again. But at least now I have a substantially better understanding of what is involved in configuring the machines I use every day.

    This experience got me wondering how many folks have actually rebuilt the software environment on their machine from the ground up. Besides voting in the poll, be sure to share your experiences installing software on machines.

    My favorite software reinstall story from the last few weeks is installing a Photoshop 6 upgrade that required providing the media from an earlier Photoshop version, so that I could then install an upgrade to the first version of Adobe Creative Suite, which I could then use as the base to authorize the installation a more recent version of Create Suite. It was tempted to buy a license key from to avoid that, but I didn't because we run a completely clean shop from a software licensing perspective.

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  3. #2
    allfreechips's Avatar
    allfreechips is offline Private Member
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    I like to start from scratch but I am a one person show so not a giant big deal, also I use a subscription for photoshop, 2 installs for $10 a month and I never need to worry about keys ext...
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  4. #3
    Sherlock's Avatar
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    I voted never. Some former gfs did it many years ago with my computers because I have no patience for that. Ironically I do it up and there for other people (like my holy mother that I see just once in a year or so), because they think I am the guy working with computers, so I am an expert. People have computers in a state that complete reinstalls are necessary.

    I buy a new simple laptop every year or two, because they do not last longer the harsh way I am treating them. Then I rather deinstall things than install. I need only browsers, Google Earth, VPN, HW wallet app and Telegram. Since I have new computers all the time, they do not need to be fixed by reinstalls.

    I never touch servers.
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  6. #4
    DanHorvat's Avatar
    DanHorvat is offline Private Member
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    I was trying to find the best Linux version for a small laptop (not old, but underpowered) only to find out that it's the same one I already have installed. So Lubuntu it is. I reinstalled operating systems dozens of times over the years, and during a brief period when I was designing and selling small form factor computers I was installing Windows 8 on them after assembling the hardware.

    Regarding servers, I'm handling all three of mine (2 VPS, 1 dedicated) myself, and all run on Plesk. This can be fun sometimes. For example, when you want to upgrade from MySQL to MariaDB and mess it up, or when your programmer creates 30 GB of error logs so you have to log in via SSH to find and delete them and your root password is stored in some .txt file on your PC God-knows-where.

    In total, I think I had to accept defeat and click the Reinstall button maybe twice. It deletes everything and reinstalls CentOS (or some other system such as Debian, Fedora, Windows...) and then installs the control panel (cPanel, Pleskm CozyCloud...) on top of it.

    I'm very happy with this setup as I'm using all the latest technology and I at least get notified of updates (Plesk Obsidian 18.0.20), it's not like I'm off the grid, and yet have absolute full control as a power user. Any other solution would either require too much effort on my end to keep up with the vulnerabilities, or would reduce the level of control that I have.

    Generally, using Windows on any machine with sensitive information is a really bad idea. Any Linux installation would be a better choice, and Mac would be even better.
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