back to article UK rail lines blocked by unexpected Windows dialog box

Window admins rejoice! It isn’t just you that can’t get Office 2010 to uninstall silently. The mighty brains behind the UK railways have had just as much trouble. As well as the usual passenger information boards, detailing the day's cancellations and delays, London’s Victoria train station also features displays on every …

Silver badge

Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess

So that they can be pwned by poisoned documents, of course.

66
2

"Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Because the pictured screen is a very zoomed out Excel spreadsheet with updated information populated by a 30,000 line VBA script.

125
0
Silver badge
Boffin

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

You missed the bit about the 30,000 lines being undocumented and written by a temp who left 5 years ago.

109
0

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

It's not my fault! I tried to tell them the documentation was important, but they never gave me the time to do it! Well, not until 1 week before I left.

65
0

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Really??

4
0
Silver badge

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Documenting VBA is pointless. Isn't the code self-explanatory?

I know/hope that this was just a joke, but running VB scripts/macros in production code anywhere is asking for fragility and breakage and lack of accountability. Next time use logo.

20
0
Silver badge
Coffee/keyboard

Schadenfreude

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

After a while this won't be funny any more. just sad.

7
1

I've worked on rail line overviews. In the bad old days, you had to install either Visual Studio or Office just to get some god damned necessary DLL, which was absurd. Fortunately, those days are long gone.

One of the most important restrictions we have with these systems is to NOT install third party software on them. They're dedicated display systems, not general-purpose computers.

Of course, that won't stop people from trying...

10
0
Anonymous Coward

If it's anything like our company, I'll go with "Software updates and rollouts are done remotely by someone who doesn't know what you do and was too lazy to check what all the thousands of machines did so just pushed O365 out to all machines because they were told 'everyone' had to use it now."

15
0
JLV
Silver badge

Hey, it's the vendor's trial bundle.

Up next, Oracle's Ask.com Toolbar.

15
0
FAIL

Um

I managed to uninstall Office 2010 silently. It's not that hard...

8
9
Silver badge

Re: Um

They may not have been trying a silent uninstall, maybe these machines are just in the wrong ou or something.

10
0
Joke

Re: Um

I managed to uninstall Office 2010 silently. It's not that hard...

I thought Windows Update was how you silently uninstalled things?

51
0
Silver badge

Re: Um

Yes, like your data...

37
0
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Um

I managed to uninstall Office 2010 silently. It's not that hard...

I hear DBAN works well...

17
1
Silver badge
Holmes

"Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Powerpoint ?

14
0

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Overhead power point

44
0
Silver badge
Coat

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

It's not Powerpoint, if you look closely you can see the text isn't in Comic Sans.

67
0

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Isn't the powerpoint where they plug the trains in?

15
0

Re: "Why a copy of Office is needed on a PC tasked with showing line information is anyone’s guess"

Nope, at London Victoria it would have to be third-rail power point.

10
0
Silver badge

TBF running the trains better is one thing Clippy could do!

NT but a replacement bus service the other way.

5
0
FAIL

It's not that Windows failed, it's that it failed in public view

I always thought it was an own-goal to include the brand name (+ identifiable look 'n' feel) in error messages and alert boxes which are likely to appear in public places.

Microsoft clearly still thinks this is good PR.

Compare Apple's "grey screen of death" which mentions neither Apple, nor any of their brands. On the contrary, it has an international flavour, with various languages and alphabets, so you could be forgiven for unconsciously blaming the failure on humanity generally.

35
2
Silver badge

Re: blaming the failure on humanity generally

Yes, people hold it wrong.

11
1

Re: It's not that Windows failed, it's that it failed in public view

So the error message pertaining to an issue with Office shouldn't contain a reference to Office, not should it look like an error message as people know them?

I'm not sure that's such a swell idea...

20
0
Silver badge

Re: It's not that Windows failed, it's that it failed in public view

They should use this error message: https://54below.com/app/uploads/error-message-1024x576.png

(Yes, yes, I'm still living in the 90's)

4
1

Re: It's not that Windows failed, it's that it failed in public view

What's wrong with a good old "Guru meditation"?

2
0

You can see the diagram for yourself if you wish at:

http://www.opentraintimes.com/maps/signalling/vir1#T_VICTRIE

except that the spoilsport of a web operator hasn't got the Microsoft error message to display!

18
1
Silver badge

"

You can see the diagram for yourself if you wish at:

http://www.opentraintimes.com/maps/signalling/vir1#T_VICTRIE

"

It's not interactive! How useless. It would be much more fun if you could alter the signals and points with a mouse-click.

14
0
Silver badge

OpenTrainTimes.com

+1 for this useful website.

2
0
Anonymous Coward

"It looks like you're trying to run a rail network. Would you like help?"

At this point I'm not which one runs worse.

9
1
Silver badge
FAIL

I don't often say this, but I'm pretty sure even Microsoft couldn't make the trains run worse.

No Microsoft error messages showing at St Pancras tuesday night, but the destination boards were ordered pretty much randomly (actually, by platform - but because they're all one long list, not individual boards headed by destination, that's no help whatever) and contain entries for trains that left an hour before.

12
2
Silver badge

"and contain entries for trains that left an hour before."

I think you will find they haven't actually left yet. Especially if it is trains from the Thameslink platforms.

20
0
Trollface

Clippy - on - rails

that is all

11
0
Silver badge

"destination boards were ordered pretty much randomly..."

Well, just click on the header of the column you want to sort by and they'll be rearranged to your specs, sir.

You may need to jump about 12 feet in the air to click on the header, only to realize that they forgot to install touch/punch screens.

8
0
Anonymous Coward

Sigh!

As a user of the 'Brighton Line' I'm just waiting for the Union to call for a strike on the grounds that not all their members got to see the message and that the Railway Operator was discriminating against their members.

Yes, I'm being sarcastic but the impasse between the NUR (or whatever they are called this week) and the TOC's has been going on for more than two frigging years. I know of many people who have given up trying to commute by train because of the uncertainty. If you think that BREXIT is a cause for uncertainty, then any Brighton based commuter will gladly bend your ear for a few weeks on uncertainty.

And... another weekend with half the line shut for so called engineering works.

Roll on Friday... oh wait, I need to work on Saturday bummer.

Yours, disgruntled of Kemp Town.

30
3
Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: Sigh!

@AC, "the NUR (or whatever they are called this week)"

Coughs, it's been the RMT since 1990.

Perhaps the railways should stop talking about disruption and just give a coefficient of entropy for the day's service.

4
0

At least it hadn't started installing Windows 10.

27
0
Headmaster

"Train Station"

Am I the last person who calls it the "railway station"?

63
2

Re: "Train Station"

No, I too insist on calling it a railway station. "Train station" is 'Merkin usage.

39
2
Anonymous Coward

Re: "Train Station"

Railway station has been in decline since 1913 and since 1997, more people have used train station. (According to Google ngrams)

8
3
Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: "Train Station"

Do you go to a "bus station" or a "road station"?

Trains run on railways, buses run on roads.

14
7
Silver badge
Big Brother

Re: "Train Station"

"Do you go to a "bus station" or a "road station"?"

Neither. Public transport is for plebs.

30
11
Anonymous Coward

Re: "Train Station"

No, trains run on railway tracks.

A railway station is a building and facility belonging to a railway (currently National Rail or similar).

Of course you could just follow the train announcers and refer to the stations as "service stops" *shudder*

19
0
Silver badge

Re: trains run on railway tracks

Historically partly to give a monopoly. If people had built better roads for the steam engine pulling a "train of wagons", anyone could have used them.

"Trains" that don't use rails/tracks do exist.

10
0

Re: "Train Station"

"station" = "place where something is stopped". It's a "train station" when just YOUR train is stationary for an indefinite period of time. It's a "railway station" when the ENTIRE railway is stationary for an indefinite period of time. Problem solved, leaving only the mystery of why the term "railway station" is becoming less common when the condition of the entire railway being stopped doesn't seem to.

(says I, from behind my... work station)

21
1
Silver badge

Re: "Train Station"

Looks pretty terminal to me.

You would think that their IT people would simply have moved to another platform. Bad luck if you want to go to places like Streatham as I think they normally depart from platform 10 IIRC.

4
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: "Train Station"

Do you go to a "bus station" or a "road station"?

I go to the "gare routière"

13
0
TRT
Silver badge

Re: "Train Station"

Apparently, according to some announcements, the trains are calling TO "Harrow & Wealdstone", "Watford Junction", "Hemel Hempstead" etc etc.

And the one that really annoys me is on the underground...

"Please move along the platform to your left and towards the end carriages as the middle carriages is where the train is most busiest."

*grinds teeth*

5
0

Re: "Train Station"

@ "work Station": using the fall update of Win10, I guess ;p

2
0

Re: "Train Station"

:-D Ha! No, it's just slow. Apparently there are leaves on the five-volt line.

2
0

Page:

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018