Does Microsoft Windows Need To Do More Or Less In Future Versions?

There is little doubt that over the years we have seen Microsoft Windows continue to grow, into what some claim is now bloated beyond belief. Some have claimed that Microsoft has followed a pattern in their growing spurt as hard disks grew bigger, processors became faster and memory became cheaper. Microsoft also had no qualms in sharing the super sizing even for their prized software Microsoft Office.

Some have stated that this increase in size was needed as the operating system carried more of the load, offered my options, included more software such as DVD writing and other applications. Microsoft Office was also called upon to do more for their clients which in turn added to its growth in size. So if you run both Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office latest editions, you saw a definite increase in size.

What also is bringing attention to Microsoft is that while the bigger computer cousins like desktop and laptops can handle the load, smaller hardware like netbooks and tablets struggle pushing the Windows code. Even though Microsoft has shrunk Windows down to a bare minimum these devices still struggle. While over at Apple and Google their operating systems thrive on lean hardware.

However, if it was that simple to compare Microsoft Windows to Apple iOS or Google Chrome, the argument would be easy. Except that there are distinct differences that separate these operating system for the specific needs of the consumer. So putting this argument aside and also the argument that Windows contains outdated code etc. , is Windows too bloated?

Hold on say some to this notion. They like the way Windows 7 functions plus they enjoy all of the new bells and whistles. They argue that they do not care how big Windows is because Windows works just fine on their desktop or laptop computers. In addition some want Windows to increase what it does and add more features. With the new hard drive sizes they feel that Windows getting larger is a none event.

One comment that I found of interest was from those who have chosen to put Windows on a SSD drive and store their data on a traditional hard disk. They complain that this type of system doesn’t function perfectly since Windows seems to feel that all software should be installed in the Programs file directory. Microsoft would have to address this problem, which some feel will not happen anytime soon.

How this idea? The user gets to choose what gets installed on a system and where it gets installed? This suggestion, coupled with a modular type of Windows, seems very popular.

Personally I don’t care. Windows 7 runs great on my systems and I have no complaints. The days of calling Windows or Office bloated make no sense, since the hard disks we have become so huge, and performance hasn’t suffered because of faster processors and more memory, the argument is a moot point to me.

So what do you think?

Source – Windows 7 News Forum

5 Reasons You Should Throw Away Your Apple iPad And Buy Something Else

I wrote yesterday about having ordered an Apple iPad 1 for my wife as a surprise gift. So this morning when I read that the Apple iPad 1 was obsolete, there was no doubt in my mind when the computer arrives, I would not even open the box and just toss the computer in the trash. The original article I read featured 10 reasons why the Apple iPad 1 featured ’10 technologies that outdate it,’ I trimmed the list down to 5 of the most ridiculous. That’s right. Ridiculous because this article smacks of biased and flat-out dumb asinine reasoning.

1. The Apple iPad features a screen that is 9.7 inches while the Motorola Xoom features a screen size of 10.1 inches. The Samsung Galaxy also will feature a 10.1 inch screen. Can anyone explain to me how much bigger .4 inches is? I fail to see any difference. Even the writer of the article stated that ‘is it the end of the world? Not in the least.’ But stop right there. Wasn’t this article going to provide us with reasons why the Apple iPad uses outdated technology? .4 inch in screen real estate is hardly outdated technology.

2. No dual core processor. Newer tablets that use either Google Andorid OS or some that will feature Windows 7 may need dual cores. Could the reason be that Apple has a more efficient OS that operates fine with a single core?

3. No 4G. OMG! No offense but I have been using Verizon’s 3G service on my Google Cr-48 and it is fast enough. I’m a speed freak and if 3G satisfies my needs I know it will be just fine for most users. There is one thing that outweighs 3G vs. 4G: Staying connected. What good is any speed if you are being dropped right in the middle of surfing on the Internet?

4. No dual cameras. There is a deal breaker. Oh, wait, I have a camera on my phone. The Apple iPad 1 cannot be used as a toaster. So toasters are obsolete. No, toasters are designed to make toast and not be used to surf the Internet. So all tablets are obsolete because they can’t make toast.

5. No video conferencing. Gee, that is obvious since the original iPad has no cameras. I have never video conferenced. I have no intention of video conferencing in the future. Does that make me ‘outdated technology’?

My take is that the original Apple iPad 1 is a toy for consumers to use to surf the Internet. The Apple iPad 1 was not designed for hard-core video editing nor designed for playing high-tech games. Any idiot can figure this out.

What do you think? Am I just being critical because I already have buyers remorse and wish I had not purchased this lame obsolete technology? Or are these short comings and the article itself, just an attempt to draw people to the Web site?

Comments welcome.

Source – eWeek

Are You Installing Windows 7 SP1? Be Careful If You Dual Boot Linux

I have been beta testing SP1 for Windows 7 since August 2010, without any issues. I have installed all of the fixes, patches, and repairs. All have worked well without any issues. But when I went to install the final release of Windows SP1, I found two issues I needed to address.

The first issue was having to uninstall Windows 7 SP1 beta before installing the final release. You can uninstall the service pack which is actually listed as Service Pack For Windows KB976932 in updates. There is always that little voice in the back of your mind that tells you to pray that all goes well. Well fortunately for me, it did. After the uninstall and a reboot my computer started up and all was well.

The next issue I didn’t expect. I went to install Windows 7 SP1 final and received error 0x800f0a12 with a failed installation. I eventually found the reason listed at a Technet blog, followed the advise and fixed the issue. It appears that those who have Linux install need to make sure that the System Reserved or Windows partition is marked as Active before you install Sp1 final edition. Check out the link below:

I had previously downloaded the appropriately 1.90G file from Technet and burned the .iso image to DVD. This larger file from Microsoft is for both 32 and 64 bit versions of Windows 7 and also Server 2008 R2. The normal delivery of Windows 7 SP1 final, for most users, will be by Windows update service and will be much smaller in size.

I use a Diskeeper 2010 defragmentation software that works in the background and keeps my system running smoothly. In the past some people have mentioned that one should defrag a Windows system before an install major of updates such as service packs and when upgrading the entire OS. I am not sure if this claim still is valid, but you may wish to defrag your system and check for malware before installing SP1 on your Windows 7 system.

The installation window for SP1 recommends that you proceed with the installation because your system will kept your up to date plus it will enhance your systems reliability and performance.

Who doesn’t want a more reliable or better performing system? With this in mind I proceeded with the installation with my fingers crossed. After about 30 to 40 minutes of whizzing and restarts my machine came to life, update complete, and running hot, straight and normal. I checked my other software that has been installed and it all seemed to work OK.

So should you install Windows 7 SP1 on your machine? That is totally up to you. Over at AOL Tech they have an unofficial poll that indicates about 50% of those who did install SP1 had little or not problems. The next largest number was 30% who have decided to wait before install the service pack and about 20% who experienced issues.

If you have installed Windows 7 SP1, what has been your experience? If you haven’t installed the service pack, are you waiting until the bugs are worked out?

Comments welcome.

Source – Windows Blog

AOL – Tech

Microsoft Suggests 6 Ways To Speed Up Your PC

With all of the television advertisements from companies claiming to have the secret cure to speed up your PC, Microsoft has six easy ways to do it on your own. These six easy steps are nothing new and have been used for years by most people who consider themselves guru’s. In addition to these suggestions, there are also other free software for you to use to keep your computer running fast.

Step #1. Remove spyware from your computer. I recommend using the free version of Malwarebytes. You will also need a good anti-virus program and I am using the free edition of Avast on my Windows 7 boxes. Others like the free program from Microsoft called Security Essentials. Another program that gets mentioned is AntiVir personal edition.

Step #2. Free up disk space. Microsoft recommends using their Disk Cleanup tool. I personally like CCleaner or Glary Utilites. Both of these tools do a very good job of cleaning out the junk and gunk that can clog up your operating system.

Step #3. Use the Disk Defragmentation built into Windows. This according to Microsoft will speed up access to your data. There is much controversy as to the benefits of defragging a hard disk. My personal opinion is that I recommend doing it. There are free programs such as Defraggler or Auslogics Disk Defrag.

Step #4. Also recommended is checking your disk for errors using the check disk utility. Here’s how:

  1. Close all open files.
  2. Click Start, and then click Computer.
  3. In the Computer window (My Computer in Windows XP), right-click the hard disk you want to search for bad sectors, and then click Properties.
  4. In the Properties dialog box, click the Tools tab.
  5. Click the Check Now button.
  6. In the Check Disk dialog box (called Error-checking in Windows 7), select the Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors check box, and then click Start.

Step #5. If you are using Microsoft Windows Vista or Windows 7, Microsoft recommends using Ready Boost. According to Microsoft, Ready Boost can help speed up your system. IMO your results may vary.

Steps #6. Microsoft recommends upgrading to Windows 7. This suggestion is of course, if and only if, your computer can support Windows 7.

I have read and suggest to those who are new to computers to read the free .pdf manual, ‘Windows On Speed: Ultimate Acceleration Manual’. You can get your free copy here.

Windows On Speed: Ultimate Acceleration Manual

What suggestions do you have to speed up a Windows computer?

Comments welcome.

Source – Microsoft

IE, Opera, Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and More – What Browser Do You Use and Why?

Reader Buffet asked me a question about upgrading to IE8:

When IE8 first came out, the Internet was rampant with horror stories of people who had downloaded and installed the final release only to have it wreak havoc on their systems and plague them with problems! Have the issues been addressed and corrected? In your opinion, should I feel safe upgrading from 7 to 8? Thank you very much for your time.

I responded to Buffet that I knew that IE8 worked well in Windows 7. My wife uses IE8, which she prefers, on her Windows 7 box. I also knew that Microsoft had fixed the original problems that many experienced and that it should work OK for him. I also said to make a restore point, which is always a good idea no matter which software you install.

But I refrained from adding in my reply to dump IE8 and use Firefox or Chrome. I haven’t used any version of IE for at least five years. I have used both Firefox and now Chrome exclusively on my personal systems. On the Cr-48 notebook I am testing for Google, the only option is Chrome. On my personal laptop, which dual boots Windows 7 and Linux Mint, I have also switched over to Chrome.

Do I recommend that everyone switch over to Chrome? Absolutely not. We all have our favorite software that we use and basically all of the browsers do the same thing: open up Web sites to us on our computers. But I have mentioned this before and I will say it again. It is the feel of the software that dictates which one I use. But in this case with my choice of browser was the issue that one particular add-on I used failed in Firefox. In Chrome the extension worked fine, so I switched browsers.

Now my question to all of you is: which browser do you use and why?

Comments welcome.

Should Google Combine Chrome OS And Android?

I was greeted on Saturday morning by some 200 email messages from Google referencing the Cr-48 pilot program. As I learned later, there had been a coding error on a forum that Google was setting up and the results were a mass mailing to not only Cr-48 users, but also to some who were still waiting to receive a unit. Needless to say that there was a bit of mass confusion until Google finally cleared things up on Saturday afternoon, explaining the screw up.

For those of you who may be unaware, Google currently has 3 operating systems they are using. Google has Android for smartphones, which I have used and it was very easy to navigate without any instructions. Google also has the Chrome aka Chromium operating system currently being tested on their Cr-48 netbook computers. Recently Google has announced Android Honeycomb which was specifically designed for tablets and will be featured on Motorola’s Xoom tablet scheduled for release in early 2011.

One lengthy post on the Google Cr-48 pilot program forum was one persons belief that Google Chrome and Android should be merged into one single operating system. Their thinking was that applications would than be available for the one OS being used on smartphones, tablets and the future netbook computer using the Google Chrome OS.

During my travels around the Internet I have read comments from others stating a similar opinion. I disagree. Each of the devices require their own specific software to function properly. I believe trying to make a single operating system and trying to port it to all devices is what Microsoft tried and met with limited success. Microsoft was forced to use Windows XP on the first notebooks since neither Vista nor Windows 7 would run fast enough. Neither Vista nor Windows 7 could provide for sufficient extended battery operations. Currently my Cr-48 will run for 8 hours on one single charge. It is claimed that the Xoom could run for 10 hrs. on battery power alone.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Source – Google Cr-48 pilot program forum

PS I did learn that Google states we get to keep the Cr-48. :-)

Canon PIXMA MG5220 Wireless All In One Printer – Reviewed

My 8-year-old HP All In One printer has been having issues for the past few months, so I have been in the market for a replacement. I mainly make copies and some minor color printing, with my main printing needs handled by my HP Laserjet. I also wanted a printer that worked wirelessly, but the most important feature had to be the availability of cheap ink. I didn’t want to be gouged for $50 or $60 for replacement cartridges. During my entire computing career, I have been a slave to HP printers. I have helped build the HP empire to what it is today, just in the cost of printer cartridges that I have paid for over the years. LOL.

Since before the holidays, I have looking been roaming the Internet looking for a new All In One printer. I finally decided on the Canon PIXMA MG5200. I bought it at Amazon for $89.99. I also ordered a pack of 5 remanufactured print cartridges for $20.50 which included shipping.

The printer arrived Thursday afternoon, and I had to put away my other toys, while I setup my new toy. After getting the printer out of the box, and installed the print cartridges, my first task was to set up the printer to my wireless network. I would recommend you follow the instructions that come with the unit and make sure you follow the procedure as specified. After finishing the wireless part, I tried to print from my personal laptop, without installing the software provided. It worked.

I am not a huge fan of software that comes with printers. I have not installed the software that came with the printer yet, so I can not comment on it.

I have 4 computers connected to the printer, all using Windows 7, except for one older laptop using Windows XP SP3. All work just fine printing.

Manual copying and scanning also works fine.

But this is where the little box shines. I had a photo on a memory card that I printed on photo paper. The results were stunning. The images were sharp and clear and rivaled in quality to what Walgreens and Wal-Mart offers.

There is only one thing I don’t care for. The printer is a shiny black plastic that looks sharp. But fingerprints and dust cling like a magnet.

Comments welcome.

Canon PIXMA MG5220 Wireless Inkjet Photo All-In-One (4502B017)

6 PKS GENERIC INK CANON PGI-225 CLI-226 Pixma iP4820 MG5220

Linux Mint 10 Reviewed – Part #2 – It Is Only Getting Better

This is a followup review to Part #1 which can be found here

In my quest to make Linux Mint 10 by sole operating system, I needed to bring over two contact lists into Mozilla Thunderbird, which is the default email software installed with Mint 10. I have been using Mozilla Thunderbird on my Windows 7 system and I found that I like T-bird very much. I exported both of my contact lists from Outlook 2007 and T-Bird and copied the files over as .csv format. Before importing the files, I opened both and trimmed down the majority of fields, since I just wanted the names and email addresses of my contacts. The import went well and after merging both contact lists, I had the names and email addresses I needed.

Next, I transferred my entire Documents folder over from Windows to Mint. It was 281MB of stuff. It is funny. Once I looked at the stuff you have accumulated a good cleaning was in order. It reminded me of Hoarders. We love to keep the gunk and junk that we may need someday but rarely do. The first thing I needed to do was open two .pdf documents and one document created in Microsoft Word 2007. No problems here. The .pdf documents were handled by Document Viewer, Word documents were handled by Open Office Writer [no formatting issues were noted] and .jpg pictures were handled by Eye of Gnome. There may be better software out there but these worked just fine.

What also impressed me was that Open Office Writer asked if I wanted to keep the original .docx extension or convert it over to .odt. Either way I was able to view all of my documents without issue.

When you use the built-in Update Manager software, make this change. Open the software, go to Edit, Software sources. You will see a listing for Download From. From the drop down menu select other. You will be presented with a list of servers near you with one being recommended. I chose the recommend server and it has been working great. The auto update feature works fine and thus far the updates have not caused any issues.

Another nice feature that I have not noticed before in any Linux version I have previously used . When you pop in a disk, CD, DVD, DVD DL the system provides an icon indicating what the disk is. Even if it is a -R or +R. No biggie, just a nice feature. :-)

Last evening I had received a DVD PowerPoint Presentation and using Brasero was able to make an exact copy of the disk. I also tried a little experiment using Brasero. I took one of my own DVD Movie disks that I bought and tried to make a copy of the movie. I copied the disk as an image to the system and then burned the image to a dual-layer disk. It worked just fine. Before I go on any further, I do not condone nor recommend violating copyrighted material. I just wanted to see if it could be done using the software that came with Mint by default.

This morning I received an email for a posting over at Scots Newsletter Forum. It was a link to Dedoimedo with an article ‘And the best distro of 2010 is ….” At first I was a little disappointed since no where is the review was there any mention of Mint. But at the end of the article was this:

And the GRAND winner is …

You haven’t seen it listed above, but it would feature under the glorious title of best all-arounder. And that would have to be Linux Mint. While it did underperform in the spring, the autumn release is just splendid. It’s a perfect 10 for the tenth release.

Linux Mint Julia has the best overall combination of ingredients. The best desktop theme and menu, the best combination of programs, the best package management. It’s the most usable distribution out there, and it’s just a pleasure to run.

The article goes on to state that while Mint is based on Ubuntu, the developers have done something that I believe is worth mentioning. They have included software that makes it easy for the new Linux user to use and more importantly understand. So simple is the GUI and features included with Mint, that I was actually able to put software icons and what is called the panel aka in Windows taskbar. This gives my desktop the clean look I like with no icons visible.

There was also this statement:

Everything works out of the box, every little detail is carefully placed and designed, there’s practically nothing bad you can think of.

This is the real beauty of Mint. It works.

I haven’t used Microsoft Windows 7 for well over a week and I am not missing it at all. What I am enjoying is a fast system that is not bogged down by anti-virus software and other junk. Is there a difference in RAM usage? Yes there is. I would normally use about 1.5G to 1.8G of RAM running Windows while using Firefox and Thunderbird. That has dropped to about 500MB.

Comments welcome

Source

Linux Mint 10 Reviewed – Part #2 – It Is Only Getting Better

This is a followup review to Part #1 which can be found here

In my quest to make Linux Mint 10 by sole operating system, I needed to bring over two contact lists into Mozilla Thunderbird, which is the default email software installed with Mint 10. I have been using Mozilla Thunderbird on my Windows 7 system and I found that I like T-bird very much. I exported both of my contact lists from Outlook 2007 and T-Bird and copied the files over as .csv format. Before importing the files, I opened both and trimmed down the majority of fields, since I just wanted the names and email addresses of my contacts. The import went well and after merging both contact lists, I had the names and email addresses I needed.

Next, I transferred my entire Documents folder over from Windows to Mint. It was 281MB of stuff. It is funny. Once I looked at the stuff you have accumulated a good cleaning was in order. It reminded me of Hoarders. We love to keep the gunk and junk that we may need someday but rarely do. The first thing I needed to do was open two .pdf documents and one document created in Microsoft Word 2007. No problems here. The .pdf documents were handled by Document Viewer, Word documents were handled by Open Office Writer [no formatting issues were noted] and .jpg pictures were handled by Eye of Gnome. There may be better software out there but these worked just fine.

What also impressed me was that Open Office Writer asked if I wanted to keep the original .docx extension or convert it over to .odt. Either way I was able to view all of my documents without issue.

When you use the built-in Update Manager software, make this change. Open the software, go to Edit, Software sources. You will see a listing for Download From. From the drop down menu select other. You will be presented with a list of servers near you with one being recommended. I chose the recommend server and it has been working great. The auto update feature works fine and thus far the updates have not caused any issues.

Another nice feature that I have not noticed before in any Linux version I have previously used . When you pop in a disk, CD, DVD, DVD DL the system provides an icon indicating what the disk is. Even if it is a -R or +R. No biggie, just a nice feature. :-)

last evening I had received a DVD PowerPoint Presentation and using Brasero was able to make an exact copy of the disk. I also tried a little experiment using Brasero. I took one of my own DVD Movie disks that I bought and tried to make a copy of the movie. I copied the disk as an image to the system and then burned the image to a dual-layer disk. It worked just fine. Before I go on any further, I do not condone nor recommend violating copyrighted material. I just wanted to see if it could be done using the software that came with Mint by default.

This morning I received an email for a posting over at Scots Newsletter Forum. It was a link to Dedoimedo with an article ‘And the best distro of 2010 is ….” At first I was a little disappointed since no where is the review was there any mention of Mint. But at the end of the article was this:

And the GRAND winner is …

You haven’t seen it listed above, but it would feature under the glorious title of best all-arounder. And that would have to be Linux Mint. While it did underperform in the spring, the autumn release is just splendid. It’s a perfect 10 for the tenth release.

Linux Mint Julia has the best overall combination of ingredients. The best desktop theme and menu, the best combination of programs, the best package management. It’s the most usable distribution out there, and it’s just a pleasure to run.

The article goes on to state that while Mint is based on Ubuntu, the developers have done something that I believe is worth mentioning. They have included software that makes it easy for the new Linux user to use and more importantly understand. So simple is the GUI and features included with Mint, that I was actually able to put software icons and what is called the panel aka in Windows taskbar. This gives my desktop the clean look I like with no icons visible.

There was also this statement:

Everything works out of the box, every little detail is carefully placed and designed, there’s practically nothing bad you can think of.

This is the real beauty of Mint. It works.

I haven’t used Microsoft Windows 7 for well over a week and I am not missing it at all. What I am enjoying is a fast system that is not bogged down by anti-virus software and other junk. Is there a difference in RAM usage? Yes there is. I would normally use about 1.5G to 1.8G of RAM running Windows while using Firefox and Thunderbird. That has dropped to about 500MB.

Comments welcome.

Source – Dedoimedo

Linux Mint 10 Reviewed – Part #1

I was going to wait and do a 30 day review, but I found that Mint is just too good to not pass along.

I must admit that it has been just about 12 months since I had last tested a Linux distribution. During my past experiences, I normally uninstalled whatever distribution I tried, because I either had issues getting a wireless connection or was unable to print to my HP laser Jet via a print server. Either of these is a deal breaker for me. I also spent way too much time trying to configure either the wireless connection or printer and basically just gave up. I won’t bore you with the installation details, since you have one of three choices. You can install as a standalone OS, dual-boot [this was what I opted to do} , or run as a Live CD.

I choose the dual-boot option because I wanted to give Mint a fair shot at testing. Running any Linux version as a Live CD normally runs slow and you can not save settings nor install software for testing. I also wanted to be able to access Windows 7 during testing, because I intended to transfer my personal stuff over to Mint, where possible.

Here is the Mint 10 desktop at startup:

The desktop is simple and I actually liked the simple gray background. The logo is an M with a small 10 in the upper right corner. Nothing fancy but in a simple way it is elegant. What I really liked is the ‘Welcome To Linux Mint’ menu. The menu contain a help guide in .pdf format as well as a link to install all of the packages that come on the DVD.

Also located on the welcome menu are New Features, Known Problems, Tutorials, Forums, Chat and other useful information. add

Setting up my wireless to the Internet was a snap. Like most operating systems I have used, Windows XP, Vista, 7, the new Chrome and other Linux versions, I setup my wireless connection manually to my router. It rarely every shows up as one of the found connections, but once setup, works flawlessly. Mint was easy to set up but more importantly, instantly connects when I boot into Mint.

Next, I was able to set up my printer from a wireless print server, including the correct driver for my HP Laser Jet 1100. Printing is flawless and the pages come out perfect.

This was enough for me to start using Mint full-time.

The first thing I did was to install all of the add-ons that I used for Firefox on Windows 7. I next set up my blog add-ons and tweaked all of my settings. Everything ran perfectly. In fact what I immediately noticed was how fast Firefox ran, compared to Windows 7 install.

I setup Thunderbird to handle all three of my email accounts. I have my private email for personal use from my ISP, a Gmail account for Google alerts and mics. emails and a MSN – Hotmail account required by Microsoft as an MVP.

I also needed a program to replace Quickbooks Started Edition for some very minor accounting matters. I found GNUCash and setup two new accounts. Thus far GNUCash is meeting my needs.

I have also downloaded software, including PCLinuxOS. I used the software Brasero and burned the .iso image easily. I am also going to try dual-layer DVDs to see if I am able to rip video using K3b. Should be interesting to see what happens.

So why did I download PCLinuxOS? I wanted to see if PCLinuxOS had improved, but unfortunately, I couldn’t setup my wireless. Where Mint was simple to set up my wireless Internet and wireless print server, I just couldn’t get PCLinuxOS to play well with my hardware.

Mint also has a great video player named Totem. It worked great viewing video I tried and the streaming was extremely smooth. No problems what so ever.

Mint also has a very easy to use Software Manger that is broken down into categories. I downloaded some software just to try the manager and it works perfectly. I am impressed with the ease in using this. I am impressed with this feature and believe Mint has done and outstanding job.

I have installed Picasso, Google Earth, K3b, Google Chrome, plus additional software that was installed when I updated to the DVD edition.

So what isn’t working correctly or that I had issues with.?

Power options issues. I selected , when possible, to spin down the hard disk in power saving mode. When this happens and the laptop goes to sleep, I need to hit the power button to wake the machine back up. Once I disabled this feature, all was well. No biggie. More of an observation than a complaint. :-)

Take a look at the Linux Mint Community site and see what you think.

Comments welcome.

Source – Mint

PS Stay tuned for part #2.

Could The ‘WinTel’ Partnership Be Dissolving?

There was a time when both Microsoft and Intel controlled the entire computer market. Microsoft with their Windows and Office products controlled the software end of the business. So mighty was the axe that Microsoft wielded, that OEM companies who made computers bowed to every whim the Redmond giant asked for. On the flip side Intel has the processor market bottled up. They priced their products the way they wanted and higher meant larger profits to their bottom line. Intel consider AMD like a small thorn in their side and basically continued to dominate the processor market. When Microsoft and Intel joined forces and worked on joint ventures together, the term ‘WinTel was coined.

Times have changed and both companies are feeling pressure from outside companies. But what is going to separate the two companies is that Microsoft has decided to use the ARM processor, an Intel competitor, to power the next version of Windows which most likely will be called Windows 8. In a recent article it also stated that:

While Windows still powers more than 90% of global personal computers, research firm Gartner says Microsoft software ran less than 3% of smartphones in the third quarter. Despite pushing tablets for the past decade, no Wintel tablet has caught on with consumers.

The success of Apple Inc.’s iPad has driven a deeper wedge between Microsoft and Intel. The two companies, in collaboration with hardware makers, haven’t been able to come up with any tablet products that match the performance, power efficiency and ease-of-use of the iPad, a worrying trend as the Apple device has come to nibble into mobile PC sales.

The rise of smartphones—and more recently, tablets—has strained the relationship. A key reason people have long preferred Wintel-based PCs —compatibility with application programs for Windows—has so far not been an important selling point in the new mobile categories. Indeed, Apple and Google Inc. have had success in creating large markets for lightweight apps on smartphones and tablets—to the point that users don’t seem to care much about Windows compatibility.

While this breakup may be news worthy, don’t for one minute think that either Microsoft or Intel and down for the count. Both companies still have major sources of revenue that continue to pour in. I don’t believe that we should open our checkbooks to make a donation to either company. But like the auto industry, one needs to be extremely careful on how the public views your company.

Consumers have little, if any, allegiance to any major corporation.

Comments welcome.

Source – WJS

Microsoft Windows 7 Tablets Could Fail Because Of Pricing

Microsoft Corporation located in the rainy state of Redmond, WA., had announced that they were preparing to introduce a Windows version for the tablet computer. What Microsoft failed to tell us was that the price of using a Windows-based tablet computer would cost double what the same Android powered system would cost. Why is a Windows tablet costing so much more? It is the hardware requirements.

While Android can function nicely on an Atom processor, Windows 7 needs an Intel Core i5-470 UVM processor and 4GB of memory to function correctly. In one recent article it stated these prices for the Asus Eee PC:

  • Eee Pad MeMO: starts at $499
  • Eee Slate: starts at $999 [Windows 7 box]
  • Eee Pad Slider: starts at $499
  • Eee Pad Transformer: starts at $399

Before I would plunk down $999 for a Eee Slate, I would purchase an Apple iPad. Which makes one wonder just how long Asus will produce a Windows tablet computer if sales are dismal?

There was also this statement:

And it’s not even designed for tablets. The user interface is designed for a cursor and a mouse, not fingers. There are few touch-enabled applications for it. Android is cheaper, built for touch, and has more than 200,000 available apps.
I am not surprised that Microsoft is taking this approach for tablet computers. They have become out of touch with what a tablet computer should be and thinking that by putting on Windows 7 they can fool the masses. Those days are over. I personally believe that consumers in the market to buy a tablet computer will want something priced at $500 or less.
Users are also not going to want a stripped down version of Windows 7 or even Windows XP on their new tablets.

Just my two cents.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Source – SAI

Children Under 6 Warned Not To Play 3D Games Or Watch 3D HDTV

Some of the big name makers of 3D devices and also makers of 3D HDTV’s warn that children under 6 years old should not use the devices. Currently the warning applies to devices in which no 3D glasses are needed to be worn by the user.

The first warning is coming from Nintendo who makes the very popular DS handheld which is introducing a 3D version here in the U.S. in March 2011. Sony, which makes the PlayStation 3, is also warning that children under six should not use the device to play 3D games. In addition Sony is also warning parents to seek medical advice before allowing their small children to view content on their 3D HDTV which do not require 3D glasses.

In addition a recent article stated:

“Parents should turn off this function if the handheld is going to be used by a child under six years of age, said Nintendo. It said the advice it had received from experts also applied to other 3D content that younger children might be exposed to.

In issuing the warning, Nintendo joins Sony and Toshiba in alerting people to the ill effects that can attend watching 3D movies or playing 3D games.

Sony has already said that parents should get medical advice before letting children watch 3D content on the PlayStation. Toshiba has said parents should keep an eye on children watching its TVs that can display 3D images without needing glasses.”

But here is one statement that caught my eye:

“The companies have also warned that watching too much 3D content can cause adults discomfort.”

I wrote about this before on my one and only experience watching a 3D HDTV, using 3D glasses. I actually suffered nausea after about 10 minutes of watching a movie. Though I am sure that this may only affect a small number who watch 3D content, it is worth taking note of the warnings.

Will these warnings spell the death to 3D games and movies?

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Source – BBC News Technology

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