I had an opportunity to witness once again the user frustration when software doesn’t perform according to expectation – in this case – the expectation unfulfilled was intuitiveness.
The scenario involved plugging in a Windows XP laptop into a network with no DHCP. (Networks I work with are all small enough that there really is no need for DHCP – and there are advantages to using a fixed IP scheme). In this case the simplicity desired was that by creating an alternate IP configuration the laptop (whose primary configuration was expecting DHCP provided IP address) would just use the alternate since no DHCP was available. Of course, it didn’t work.
In order to get the laptop onto the network we had to change the primary connection to use the “fixed” IP that we wanted — after that there was NO alternate configuration tab. (I wouldn’t have designed it that way!) . It was late evening, we were tired, we just took the easy route to get the laptop onto the internet. However, somehow it seems that we shouldn’t have had to look at help (sometimes not exactly helpful) to find an answer.