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Reflections from a Swede in Norway.

Here you will find my small graffiti board where I write about things I come to think about.

In my blog, I write about the general unfairness of life, about spam mail, vintage computers, board games, Norwegians, current and not-so-current affairs, technology and whatever else occurs to me — in other words, a glorious mess. All opinion expressed here are of course my own, and all similarities with any living people is of course intentional.

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Testing out version control

Published: Sunday 2012-02-12.

It often happens that after a while after having installed Windows on a machine, that you get to a point where some programs you have installed collide in such a way that you need to re-install the computer. When I installed Windows under DosBox I thought about that it would be interesting to track exactly what happens when you install a program. That is why I set up Git version control for my emulated C disk (I have the installation files on another emulated disk).

With the files in version control it is easy to track updates:

dosbox-c$ git log --stat -- WINDOWS/WINFILE.EXE
commit afcc0d9bad3e370fb91587370ca2f0618ddc6172
Author: Peter Krefting <>
Date:   2012-02-10 20:55:17 +0100

    Install Windows 3.11 File Manager Y2K update.

 WINDOWS/WINFILE.EXE |  Bin 171056 -> 169952 bytes
 1 files changed, 0 insertions(+), 0 deletions(-)

commit a6a6b4ae5166794481300cf63c7ed0c7c918beb6
Author: Peter Krefting <>
Date:   2012-02-10 19:35:44 +0100

    Install Windows 3.11 for Workgroups (Swedish).
    With S3 graphics drivers.

 WINDOWS/WINFILE.EXE |  Bin 0 -> 171056 bytes
 1 files changed, 0 insertions(+), 0 deletions(-)

It is possible to track what changes verious installation programs perform:

dosbox-c$ git show f53aa056a9f7c9edead1eeb74a3c2a26ccb11bf9 -- WINDOWS/SYSTEM.INI
commit f53aa056a9f7c9edead1eeb74a3c2a26ccb11bf9
Author: Peter Krefting <>
Date:   2012-02-10 19:43:04 +0100

    Install Soundblaster 16 drivers.

index 4406b02..4e7daa3 100644
@@ -12,7 +12,7 @@ comm.drv=comm.drv
+drivers=mmsystem.dll msmixmgr.dll
@@ -80,6 +80,7 @@ COM4Irq=3
@@ -95,6 +96,11 @@ CDAudio=mcicda.drv
@@ -124,3 +130,13 @@ dac-type=nbt
 [network drivers]

And by using branches, one can install problematic software separately and return to a well-known state afterwards, and then it also should, at least in theory, be possible to uninstall software with a simple git revert, although I haven’t tested that yet.

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