Dealing with software, real actual released, gone into production, gone live, working software, is a serious pain. Both as a user as well as a developer, I experience both sides of the coin and most certainly understand and empathise either. I know of the unsurmountable challenge of delivering software that works robustly within unreasonable contraints of manpower and time. But at the same time, I know the sheer frustration when software behaves so stupidly that we can literally be thankful that destruction of computing equipment is not considered the same as homicide under the eyes of the law.
And therefore, dealing with software that is not fit for release, yet, is plain begging for bondage and torture.
*timidly raises hand* yup, I am probably one of them.
So here I am, once again trying to exercise a little initiative and getting ahead to try out Team Foundation Server 2008 on Windows Server 2008 (RC) and SQL Server 2008 (Nov 07 CTP). The first time I installed SQL Server, I forgot TFS makes use of Analysis Services (AS) and did not include that. When the TFS installation analyzer reported that, I promptly loaded up the SQL Server media again only to be greeted with a rather unexpected slap that this version's setup program does not include functionality to adjust an existing instance. It can only install new instances, and I can only use the command line to modify the existing installation. How to? Check Books Online it says. If only that set of documentation is easily found in BOL.....
After giving up searching for the instructions, I opted for the lazy way out and uninstalled the current instance and attempted to reinstall with AS. Except, Reporting Services (RS) won't uninstall. Since it cannot kill itself, the Default Instance does not go completely. That means I can only install new Named Instances. But then, RS would fail while the other components get through. I wonder if it is a conincidence that the Default instance's RS is still there..... my hopes of understanding the megabyte-long setup log is pretty low.
So here I am, once again blocked off by annoying rock falls on the road that prevent me to furthering my journey. This is exactly the type of incidents I keep encountering before I can even get close to working on the actual objective of interest. I'd really love to be able to try these things out and contribute more feedback to Microsoft, but the frequency at which these demons appear to thwart my plans with such resounding success results in a reality where I actually have to wait for stabilised RTM builds before I can obtained any substantial experience using them to have a significant say.
Regular, consistent reminders telling me why I hate being a trailblazer sure is nice.