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Saturday, November 29, 2008

scoop Syncs Google Reader to Your Desktop



Adobe Air: Sure you can export your RSS feeds from Google Reader and import the feed file into desktop RSS reader for offline browsing. Scoop takes offline browsing a step further by allowing you to not only read your feeds but have them remain synced to your Google Reader account. Removing and tagging items in Scoop modifies the feeds in your Reader account as well. The interface is easy to use and includes most of the commonly used keyboard shortcuts from Google Reader. On the downside images are not currently downloaded for offline browsing, so if you've synced and now no longer have internet access you're out of luck until you're jacked back in. Scoop can be used independently of Google Reader, with manually added feeds, but it's Google integration is where it shines. For an alternate method of accessing your Google Reader feeds offline, check out Google Gears and RSS Bandit. Scoop is freeware, cross platform, and requires Adobe Air to run.

via lifehacker

Windows 7 vs. Windows Vista Startup time comparison video

Although Microsoft failed to support in any way past comparisons between development milestones of Windows Vista Service Pack 1 and Windows XP Service Pack 3, arguing that pre-gold builds are not fit for any sort of OS measuring contest, it failed to hesitate in the least when it came down to throwing the pre-beta build of Windows 7 against its precursor. On the opening day of the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference in Los Angeles, Microsoft delivered a boot time drag race between Windows Vista and Windows 7 pre-Beta Build 6801 Milestone 3.
The video embedded at the bottom of this article features a real-time comparison between the startups of Windows 7 and Windows Vista side-by-side. Jon DeVaan, Senior Vice President, Windows Core Operating System Division, revealed, “You're going to see that Windows 7 is going to startup several seconds faster than the Vista machine, and there are several things that we have done in Windows 7 to make sure that this comes true. A few examples are: loading device drivers in parallel, and another important one is that we created a mechanism to start services truly on demand, because by lowing the number of services that start during this scenario we can lower the memory pressure, we can lower the I/O pressure and we can deliver a superior experience”.
Microsoft, through the voice of Michael Fortin, Microsoft distinguished engineer and lead of the Fundamentals feature team in the Core Operating System group, indicated in the past that it was committed to the evolution of Windows 7 past Vista in terms of the startup time. In the testing lab, the Redmond giant is looking for 15 second boot times for Windows 7, which is of course a mark that will not be achieved in real life booting scenarios.


via softpedia

Windows 7 Performance, Explained

Windows-7-Performance-Explained-2From startup to the way it handles hardware resources available, power consumption and applications, Windows 7 has been applauded as delivering a level of performance superior to that of Windows Vista, even as early as pre-Beta Build 6801. As far as performance goes, the RTM of Windows Vista left much to be desired, just to use an euphemism, but following the implementation of Service Pack 1, the operating system is at least offering a glimpse promised with the gold release of the client. For Window 7, the promise is that the operating system will maintain a high level of performance despite Microsoft's tweaks designed to optimize hardware  energy efficiency and scalability.

“Energy efficiency is improved through reduced background activity and new support for the trigger starting of system services. Windows 7 also offers improvements in the Windows kernel that enable applications and services to scale efficiently between platforms. Performance of many features and APIs is improved in Windows 7 versus Windows Vista. For example, driver performance on servers is optimized by new user-mode and kernel-mode topology APIs. Graphics rendering is considerably smoother and faster. Accessibility performance is also significantly faster than before,” Microsoft explained.
According to the Redmond company, the power management technologies of the next iteration of the Windows client have been kicked up a notch. At the same time, there is only so much that Microsoft can do in the absence of support from software developers building solutions designed to run on top of the operating system. The software giant revealed that ultimately the responsibility of ensuring that Windows 7 and the underlying hardware meet their respective energy-efficiency potential lies with software developers. In this context, Microsoft pointed out that developers had the necessary infrastructure and tools in the client to tone down as much as possible the energy impact of their applications.
“Windows 7 greatly reduces the number of activities that the operating system performs that prevent use of power-saving modes. It also supports the trigger-starting of system services to enable processors to become idle more often and stay idle longer, which decreases power consumption. In addition, Windows 7 takes advantage of the latest energy-efficient hardware, including network adapters, storage devices, and graphics cards,” the company added.
Among the enhancements coming with Windows 7 are trigger-start capabilities. With a great impact on reducing startup times, trigger-start capabilities ensure that services needn't start automatically as the computer will boot. In this regard, Microsoft has made it possible for developers to start a service on a certain trigger. Windows 7 is optimized with a range of preconfigured services which are just waiting for developers to take advantage of them. This is done via the Windows 7 Service Control Manager.
“Common trigger events for services include: Device-class interface arrival: Start a service only when a certain type of device is present or attached on the system; Domain join: Start a service only if the system is joined to a Windows domain; Group policy change: Start a service automatically when group policies are refreshed on the system; and IP address arrival: Start a service only when the system is connected to the network,” the company stated.


Friday, November 28, 2008

Windows7 will be smaller, faster, better than Vista!


Vista was a resource hog, many called it the “pig with lipstick”.. it needed too much hard disk space, too much ram and too much CPU power just for itself, leaving very little resources for the applications.y1pwCZ0ZGGwid0ubqiz1OIJJqJ28OqLXYSFkN5QKjKu7PrP4v--8qUL-zH7938ahVJhM7ajRO8vk1s

Well Microsoft at last got the message and they are trying to slim down windows7.

Let me note that this will be the FIRST TIME EVER, that a NEW Microsoft OS will need LESS hard disk space and resources than its Predecessor (in this case vista)!.

The reasons are many.. the sluggish economy, that doesn't permit people to buy new computers often, the arrival of low budget laptops and other portable devices that have smaller CPU’s and ram than desktop systems, and the fact that the old hard disks are going to fade out slowly and the new solid state SSD disks (with no moving parts) will arrive. These new disks are 10 –20 times faster than the hard disks with platters that we all use, but they still have small capacity.

Read the following articles to gain a better understanding of why Microsoft is trying to slim down windows7. I think it is for the best.. Vista was JUST TOO BIG!


Another SSD-centric focus for Microsoft is ensuring that Windows 7 can fit
on the smaller solid state drives of netbooks. While most of today's
SSD-equipped netbooks ship with a maximum 8GB drive, this is expected to
double within the coming year. And it'll need to, because Windows 7 will lay
claim to almost half of that space.
At last week's WinHEC confab, Microsoft senior lead program manager Leon
Braginski said that the OS and auxiliary files - ranging from restore files,
temp and system log points and disk space reserved for hibernation - will
require only 8GB, leaving the remainder free for applications and user data.
"The entire install of Windows 7 will be smaller than Vista," Braginski
said, making 16GB "enough for a good Windows 7 experience."

Microsoft still uses Windows XP for its embedded platform, despite the
operating system being 7 years old. The company hasn't been able to slim
down Windows Vista enough to make it workable in embedded environments.
There is an "Embedded Enterprise" version of Vista, but it has the same
hardware requirements as the full OS and simply offers a customizable
Sinofsky said that Microsoft has done a lot of work to fix the slowdowns and
bulk introduced in Windows Vista. From boot times, to menu response, Windows
7 promises to be leaner and faster than its predecessor.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Video TUTORIAL: How to install Firefox 3.0 and a NICE collection of ADD-ONS!


In this computerboom VIDEO tutorial, I explain how to install Firefox 3.0, and then I go through some RECOMENDED addons that adds LOTS of functionality to FireFox.

Firefox the free open source browser is climbing in number of users. Its now reached about 20% of the market share. I like firefox now and after using AVANT ( a SHELL for internet explorer for many years, I finally made the change. But when I moved I lost some of the cool features that avantbrowser had. But with the extensions I regained those functions…

Firefox ROCKS because if its extension (add on) library!!!


See tutorials in 2 parts (youtube)   or

Click on the HD icon below TO SEE THE HD VERSION (in one part)!!!!


Leave comments if you have questions!

Part 1 of 2


Part 2 of 2

Official Windows7 wallpapers!


These were shown on the PDC 2008 Windows 7


Grab them here:


Get the Windows 7 Calculator in Vista



Windows Vista only: We took a liking last week to the Windows 7 calculator and its many uses for serious mathletes, as well its templates for calculating mortgages, salaries, and other real-world numbers. Now you can get that same power on your Windows Vista system, thanks to (we presume) one intrepid hacker who pulled it out of the Windows 7 preview. You can run it as a no-install app or make it your system's default calculator, as the Daily Gyan blog explains in the via link below, but you'll want to back up your original calculator first. The files are shared through at the moment, and may get pulled down if traffic gets heavy (or a certain development firm gets antsy); we'd appreciate any alternate links in the comments. The Windows 7 Calculator is a free download for Windows Vista systems only.

original source>

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Windows 7 Build 6936 Screenshots!!!


We have already discussed the features of upcoming Windows 7 and also saw the screenshots of build 6933 and build 6780 now lets us look at the screenshots of Windows 7 Build 6936.

icrosoft was using Windows 7 build 6933 for presentation during PDC event, while giving out only Windows 7 build 6801, which still has tons of features removed, disabled, locked or haven’t added in, causing hackers to scramble to come out with crack to patch and unlock the hidden features in Windows 7.
Apparently somebody has managed to install Windows 7 build 6936 (6.1.6936), a version that even higher and newer than Windows 7 build 6933 used in PDC. Unfortunately, there is not leaked Windows 7 build 6936 ISO image via HTTP, torrent or ED2K networks yet, but there are a few beautiful screenshots and screen captures of the Windows 7 build 6936, while waiting for the beta of Windows 7 to be released (or leaked).







Micron Demonstrates 1 GB/s SSD, 10 times faster than the best hard disk!

Micron-Demonstrates-1-GB-s-SSD-2 According to a video posted on Micron’s new blog, the company managed to develop a solid state drive that could reach the fastest speeds ever recorded by such a product. To be more specific, the video demonstrates a SSD that reaches data transfer rates of 800 MB/s while also being able to expand to apparently about 1 GB/s. This speed would be approximately twice the highest performance peak seen until today.

The system used for demonstration included two eight-core Intel Xeon processors and two SSDs. In addition, the two drives were not connected through a traditional PATA or SATA interface, which means they were not limited to the bandwidth barrier of 300 MB/s of SATA II. The drives used a PCIe interface, also including flash data management enhancements, as Micron states.
According to Micron’s Joe Jeddeloh, during the demonstration, the two cards managed to hit a data throughput of about 800 MB/s and 150,000 to 160,000 random IOPS. Jeddeloh also showed a flash PCIe card which combined the two cards in one device with 16 flash channels. He said that this card would be able to reach a bandwidth of 1 GB/s and “at least 200,000 IOPS”. The fastest enterprise SSDs available today from big manufacturers can hit about 250 MB/s and approximately 30,000 IOPS. When it comes to hard disk drives, the fastest one is considered to be WD’s Velociraptor, which clocks in at about 100 MB/s.
The PCIe concept of SSDs is not a new one, as Fusion IO has already unveiled similar products, the most notable of them hitting about 100,000 IOPS a year ago. The company has recently launched a “consumer version” of its PCIe card, which is said to offer data throughput of 500 - 700 MB/s and about 50,000 IOPS for around $1000. Micron said its drive would be available soon, but gave no reference to a possible price tag.

(video)HOW TO run a FREE virtual machine (linux ubuntu) on WINDOWS

Another video tutorial! (part 1 and part 2)

HOW TO run a FREE virtual machine (linux ubuntu) on WINDOWS using the free vmware player and downloading a preconfigured virtual machine that is in fact ubuntu 8.10. You can use this as a "protected" way to browse and do all your internet banking, inside the virtual machine and not worry about windows viruses.

I will post a link soon to a HD 720p version of this tutorial soon.
Please leave comments below!

Part 1

Part 2

Add THEMES to Vista for FREE with Vistaglazz!!!

Add THEMES to Vista for FREE with Vistaglazz!!!

here are the sites I talk about on this video:

Please have mind that this patch (vistaglazz) is NOT supported by microsoft!

Leave comments about your experience below!…


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Melt Mail is a FREE Disposable Email Service!!! (fight spam!)


Melt Mail is a free email forwarding service that creates a temporary email address that forwards all incoming mail to your real email address. To use it, just enter the email address you want messages forwarded to, select how long you want it to work, then hit Create. Melt Mail generates a random address that you can use with impunity to register on spam-likely sites, for example, and after 3, 6, 12, or 24 hours, the forwarding will stop. Melt Mail isn't breaking any new ground, but since some services won't allow you to register with popular temporary email addresses, it's worthwhile to have another option in your arsenal. Besides, the dead-simple interface is a nice touch.    [via Download Squad]

Monday, November 24, 2008

Foxit Reader Updates, Supports Inline Viewing in Firefox


Windows only: Foxit Reader—the PDF viewer that introduced most of us to the good life sans Adobe's bloated Acrobat Reader—has just updated to version 3.0. Among the handful of new and improved features, the most notable update for Firefox users is support for inline viewing of PDFs using Foxit Reader's new Firefox plug-in. That means that you can quickly view any PDF directly in a Firefox tab when you don't feel like opening a separate app to view a linked PDF (a feature common to Reader but not to Foxit). Beyond that, the full list of new features includes:

  • Enticing Multimedia Design
    Now users can not only play multimedia in Foxit Reader, but also are empowered to add, edit or delete multimedia files with the incredible Movie Tool and Sound Tool.
  • Attachment Panel
    Lists all the attached files in the PDF document, and provides a number of common options that helps users manage the attachments, such as opening, deleting and adding description to the attachments. Users can also change the security settings when opening an attachment in this panel.
  • Thumbnail Panel
    Shows thumbnail images for each PDF page and allows users to quickly view relevant portions of a PDF file. Now users can navigate through PDFs with page thumbnails.
  • Layout Panel
    Lists PDF layers in the document, allows users to control the display of some certain content areas.
  • Metric Unit Support
    Within the preferences dialog box it gives users the option to set the unit of page dimension in either metric system or imperial system.
  • Auto-scrolling with Middle Mouse Button
    In the Hand Tool reading mode, users can perform auto-scrolling by holding the middle mouse button/wheel mouse button down.
  • Awe-Inspiring Foxit OnDemand Content Management
    This new add-on enables users to organize, share and collaborate on documents and forms online. Users can upload from Foxit Reader or send documents with ease. Advanced features include workflow driven document sharing, revisions of documents, CollabRoom for group collaboration.
  • Firefox Support
    With Firefox Plugin, users can view and work with PDF files loaded in Foxit Reader with Firefox web browser.

As always, the fast-loading Foxit Reader also works from your thumb drive so you can enjoy quick PDF viewing no matter where you are. Foxit Reader is a free download (with a Pro version available if you need more advanced features), Windows only.


Microsoft meets its match in Google: Chrome to go retail


get google chrome here :

Whatever we may think about the causes of the current market meltdown, free markets do tend chrome-205_noshadow to heal themselves over time. Hence, it was only a matter of time before someone would come along and give Microsoft a run for its money in its core businesses, Windows and Office.

What was less clear, however, was just how much a giveaway--the browser--was going to become central to it all, as applications and data are increasingly being run in "the cloud" with the browser being used to access them.

As I noted on Friday, Microsoft is under considerable threat from Mozilla's Firefox browser as it continues to gain market share at the expense of Internet Explorer. Compounding Microsoft's woes, however, is a new salvo from Google: it plans to take its open-source Chrome browser retail through OEM deals with computer manufacturers, as Ars Technica reports:

"We will probably do distribution deals," (Google Vice President of Product Management Sundar) Pinchai told The Times. "We could work with an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) and have them ship computers with Chrome preinstalled."

Doing so could significantly change the browser market's competitive landscape...Many consumers don't actually do much choosing of Internet Explorer. History suggests that the vast majority of users are actually remarkably agnostic over what browser they use, and often opt for whatever ships on the system. If Google does cut deals to distribute Chrome as the default browser, it would be an interesting test of whether or not Microsoft's brand-loyalty perception is grounded in anything even resembling fact.

Firefox is changing the game, and Google is apparently preparing to compete with Microsoft at its own game (i.e., bundling its browser on new PCs). Once installed, there's a very good chance that consumers will end up using Chrome. Once it's there, all it takes is one article talking about Firefox or Chrome as being superior to IE in security or some other feature and consumers may well ditch the IE icon.

The browser market just got even frothier. Advantage? Consumers.


get google chrome here :

True blue for OLED screens discovered


Blue, the color that has been holding back OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screen technology lcd may be one giant step closer to production. Previously scientists were only able to reproduce red and green OLED's but had stumbled upon finding a material for true blue OLEDs. No longer is that the case as a group of researchers in Korea have claimed to have discovered the true blue OLED. This means that we will hopefully have consumer OLED products on the market sooner rather than later.
Why is having OLED on the market important? OLED products have greater field of vision, better color quality and require less power. Overall it's a better value for the consumer and the environment.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Mozilla Serves Its One Billionth Add-on




Mozilla announced yesterday that they've served up their one billionth add-on since 2005—and that only includes add-ons hosted on Mozilla's servers. Mozilla applications like Firefox and Thunderbird have earned a place in many of our hearts thanks to their extensibility, and the one billionth add-on milestone in conjunction with Firefox earning 20% of the market share has us thinking: These crazy open-source/extension ideas just might work.

Hard Disk Review: EXTREMELY FAST Western Digital BLACK series!


I had a Seagate 500 gb hard disk that failed on me after only 50 days of use… Fortunately I had wdfDesktop_CaviarBlack non critical data on that disk… 

So I took it for replacement. I knew that Seagate often gives “Certified REPAIRED” disks after the first failure and I didn't want to risk that.. so I asked if I could get another one instead.

So I researched the subject a bit and found that the site has very nice reviews from customers.. in the future I will use it as a reference for any purchase of hardware.

I read that Seagates of the make I had, were failing often. The I saw reviews about the BLACK series of Western digital. What I read was very interesting.

These drives were more expensive but they were FASTER and MORE RELIABLE!

And that's what I needed!

So I got a 640 Gb disk Model: WD6401AALS and out of curiosity I compared it with another disk I have on my pc…

Below you will see the comparison using HD tune 2.55 a free hard disk benchmark and info tool.

On the left is the new drive that has an average access time of 12 ms, burst rate of 87.3 (average) and cpu usage of 1.7.

Compared with the Seagate on the right (320 gb disk) that has access time 14.8 and only 74.7 burst rate average.

What is more interesting is the maximum transfer rate which on the Western digital is 116.5 MB/second while on the Seagate its 78 MB/sec. The difference is HUGE!!!

And I can feel the difference when using the computer. Of course I installed the new Western D. disk as my first boot disk. Bottom line. If you want a fast disk to install windows onto.. this is the one you want!!!

---Click on image for larger version----

hdd performance

More info on this disk can be found here

it comes in 4 flavors, 1 TB, 750 GB, 640 GB, and 500 GB.

Western digital claims that these drives are "WD's best hard drive ever."!


Comments welcome. What are your experiences with hard drives?

HOW TO: Run multiple instances of uTorrent


Say you want to have utorrent twice on the same PC, each with separate downloads. Here is how you do it

First step is to make 2 utorrents in “portable” mode like so:

Repeat steps 1 to 3 twice to make 2 utorrent program foldersmain

1. Download the latest standalone version, and copy it into a folder

2. Create an empty datafile with notepad or any other text editor, and name it settings.dat

Note: NOT settings.dat.txt but settings.dat

3. Place the settings.dat file in the same folder as uTorrent.

Now create a shortcut on your desktop for each of these portable version utorrents.

On each shortcut do the following:

Right click on the shortcut and go PROPERTIES, in the end of the target box add this:


note the space BEFORE The slash!

so it would look something like this:

"c:\wherever your files are\utorrent\utorrent.exe" /RECOVER


now you can double click both shortcuts and you will see 2 instances of utorrent running!


Comments are welcome!

Six reasons Microsoft will continue to lose market share


Microsoft has positioned itself at the top, a top that is targeted by hundreds if not thousands of microsoft companies. They have spread themselves from their core identities and they are opening themselves up for a loss of market share. For this article market share is defined as a broad term where Microsoft will lose users from its user base to its competitors.
Reason #6: The Juggernaut
Microsoft has always been viewed as the corporate beast that it is. It's always easier to degrade those that are on top than those who are up and coming. Microsoft is in a position of corporate and personal dominance. With total control of the Windows environment and the Microsoft Office platform, they can determine exactly when users are able to upgrade. People, in general, like choice and as it stands at this current time there is no competitor to Microsoft Office that is widely accepted. It can be argued that Open Office is a competitor but it has not been taken as serious as Microsoft Office has been. It's easy to target those on top but it's even harder to please all of those below you.
Reason #5: Lions, Tigers and malware Oh my!
It's a simple idea that if you're going to try and destroy something you target the largest audience; Microsoft has the largest user base of any software company. When a hacker or cracker decides to target a group it makes the most sense to target the Windows platform as it dwarfs all of the other competitors. Microsoft works diligently to combat these threats but with an ever changing environment it's nearly impossible to thwart all tangible threats. Also, the tech world expands rapidly which creates more drivers, languages, protocols, and lines of code to be written that are expanding the possibilities of vulnerabilities in software. Microsoft has to work twice as hard as the hacker or cracker does to keep them out, defense is much harder than offense, predicting as opposed to directing makes Microsoft's job endless.
Reason #4: Google
Google is no longer the underdog and is now a behemoth of a company, a company with a large pocketbook and resources. Google grew up right before many of our eyes. Starting out small and blooming into the massive corporate empire it is today. One thing Google has been able to maintain is that its name has never been tarnished by poor quality products, not to mention most products are free. It's the free mentality of Google that is the threat to Microsoft. Google has dominated the online landscape and is now moving into more traditional Microsoft territories. With the launch of Google Chrome and Android, Microsoft finds itself on the offensive against free products. While it is true that IE does not cost the user anything; the powerful and well trusted name behind Chrome will eventually give it the leg up on its Microsoft competitor. Android is a new mobile phone OS that Google is distributing for free as compared to the pay for OS, Windows Mobile. Free to a manufacturer of cell phones is a lucrative idea as they are able to have a greater margin of profit per handset sold. Google continues to slowly dig into Microsoft's market share on several different fronts with free products that are of high quality.
Reason #3: Open Source
The open source community continues to grow. From an OS offering of Ubuntu to the web browser Firefox; the community backed programs are beneficial and free option to the consumer. It's these types of initiatives that as they mature will become direct threats to Microsoft's offerings. One could argue that open source projects are vulnerable and inferior and that argue is made only by those who have never tried the products. There isn't much to be said about open source other than its free, community backed, growing daily and is quickly becoming a viable alternative to Microsoft.
Reason #2: Vista
Regardless of what state Vista is in today it launched to a very rocky start. When Microsoft lowered the initial PC requirements it shot itself in the foot. It allowed many users to install Vista on laptops that were not suited for the OS. It also gave users a very negative notion of Vista as compared to the rock solid performance of Windows XP. Today Vista has matured enough to become a well usable and stable OS but the consumer has already decided, regardless of its current state, that Vista is not acceptable. Microsoft has sold boatloads of copies of Vista but it would have sold a lot more if initial public reaction was that it was the hot new OS that everyone needs.
Reason #1: Apple
Although we said last week that OSX would never become mainstream, Apple has taken a huge leap in marketshare in the wake of the Vista fiasco. Apple saw an opportunity to advance its market share and directly attacked Microsoft's most recent offering. It's these attacks, or advertisements for OSX, that landed Apple at the number 1 spot. No other company spends millions of dollars to directly reduce Microsoft's presence in the home PC market like Apple does. It is also the best option, in terms of an OS, available to the consumer for a problem free PC experience. Apple has built itself on the legacy that "it just works" for there hardware and operating systems. If Microsoft produces another big blunder with Windows 7, Apple may be able to take a considerable stake in the market share.


Friday, November 21, 2008

How to install VMWARE on UBUNTU .bundle what to do with it!

How to install VMWARE on UBUNTU .bundle what to do with it!

I just downloaded the .bundle from the vmware site file for my Ubuntu 8.10 . So what to do next? I’m used to “apt-get install”. But this is a .bundle file, so no apt-get for this application. Well the answer was really simple just run the bundle file:

  • sudo sh VMware-Workstation-6.5.0-118166.i386.bundle
for vmware player do the following:
  • sudo sh VMware-Player-2.5.1-126130.i386.bundle

For newbies, save the .bundle file from the vmware site onto your ubuntu desktop. Start terminal by going to the menu APPLICATIONS>ACCESSORIES> TERMINAL
then navigate to the desktop by typing dir, enter (you will see a list of items one of them is Desktop (note the capital D). So you type cd Desktop and press enter. You must write Desktop with capital D because linux unlike windows takes into consideration case of the names of files and folders.
Then copy paste the text above according to your version, and press enter. Terminal will prompt you for your password.. and it will be installed.

Please post comments with your experiences!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

YouTube videos go HD with a simple hack


Wired, with the help of users on the VR-Zone forums, has uncovered a simple way to get high-quality uploaded videos to display in 1280x720--also known as 720p.

YouTube has long been expected to roll out high-definition video playback, and this appears to be the first viable way to do it. The hack in question is similar to the one that was first used to toggle on the "high quality" mode. It is done simply by adding "&fmt=22" to the end of the video URL.

I got it to work without any problems on a video. What's interesting here is that it was not ready at the same time the Flash version was.

In my case, it took about 15 minutes longer for the HD version to display. YouTube could be doing the second round of processing for these higher-resolution videos at the same time it's doing H.264 conversions for playback on TiVo digital video recorders and iPhones. My original upload was H.264 to begin with, so that could have sped things up.

Getting the higher-resolution video to display properly in embedded code is not so easy--but as you can see below, it works and looks gorgeous. You have to manually go in and change the embedded-link structure--something newbies might want to steer clear of. The YouTube embed technology for HD videos is missing the option to view in full screen, but you can toggle it on from the Google service's hosted video page.

One thing to note is that some folks to whom I sent this had problems getting the clip to display on older hardware. On my Intel Core2Duo machine, my CPU usage shot up from around 10 percent to 40 percent, and it peaked at 70 percent. This also happens on other HD video sites, such as Vimeo and Dailymotion. If you're using a computer equipped with a chip less powerful than an Intel Pentium 4, you might run into problems.

A paean for technology-free(?) childhood


My comment on article below:

I don't know about the article below. I find myself wondering how much more I would know and how much more capable I would be if I had access to the internet and fantastic tools like 4 core computers when I was a kid. I remember I had a hard time when I was young finding the books I wanted to read or watching a documentary. Back then video was not on! You had to actually wait and see it by chance on TV. Now all the information a curious brain can ever hope for is out there…

However I dont know what impact it would have on my character. I am a person of technology who puts humans first.. the machines should be an extension of the mind.. a servant not the ruler. If I grew up immersed in technology I would not perhaps have the views I have now. It kinda bothers me that everyone seems to be holding and using a gadget all the time… everywhere!  People roam along silently or talking on gismos, and they never have the time to interact or even look each other in the eye. Sure they are interacting with someone on the phone or internet via the gadget but they are not interacting with the people around them. Its like they live in a bubble. I love technology but when do people stop being people and start becoming cyborgs?



Article: Photo and article (Credit: Matt Asay)

Technology keeps making its way into younger demographics, a trend that is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. I caught my 3-year-old trying to send "text messages, Daddy" the other day.

I guess I should teach her the difference between cordless and wireless.

To be globally competitive, the United States does need to inculcate high-tech training earlier in life for would-be developers, and companies like Red Hat have targeted youth as young as high-school age with training programs.

But I don't want my kids immersed in technology too much, too soon. I was a literature major, and still prefer reading Dostoevsky to Ars Technica, much as I enjoy the latter. Technology can assist in learning, of course, including with literature, but I also feel that something is lost when our experience is intermediated by technology, because the rhythm of technology moves much faster than old-world academics and maturation.

Nick Carr wrote about this in his insightful "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" article in The Atlantic, and took a barrage of criticism for it. But there's some truth to the notion that the Internet's immediacy makes us impatient with books or anything that doesn't deliver information in soundbites and searches.

I make my living from software, so I'm not advocating that we dump it anytime soon. Rather, I'm just hoping (and parenting toward that hope) that my kids will grow up playing soccer rather than manipulating FIFA09 on their Wii; that they'll read Tolkien, Austen, and Dahl rather than; and that they'll text less and write more prose. We still need people who can do those things.

Photo and article (Credit: Matt Asay)

Samsung launches 256GB solid-state drive

Samsung on Wednesday night said it has begun mass-producing 256GB solid-state drives. This size tops the largest-capacity SSDs found in laptops today.

Samsung currently offers 64GB and 128GB SSDs for laptops.

The new 256GB drives are faster too, the company claims, more than doubling the performance rate of Samsung 64GB and 128GB SSDs.

The drives combine sequential read rates of 220 megabytes per second, with sequential write rates of 200MBps. "This sharply narrows the performance gap between read and write operations to only 10 percent, compared to a read-write speed difference of between 20 (percent) and 70 percent for other SSDs," the company said.

Samsung did not mention random write performance, however. Despite being generally faster than hard-disk drives (particularly at reading data), solid-state drives fall short of hard disks when they randomly write data. Random writes are generally considered to be the Achilles' heel of solid-state drives.

Getting this 256GB SSD in a notebook "is analogous to having a 15,000-(revolutions-per-minute) drive, without all of its size, noise, power, and heating drawbacks," Jim Elliott, vice president of memory marketing at Samsung Semiconductor, said in a statement.

The 256GB SSD boosts data transfer when large multimedia files are simultaneously read and stored. "It can store 25 high-definition movies in just 21 minutes, a significant advancement over a 7,200rpm hard disk drive (HDD), which takes about 70 minutes," the company said in a statement.

The drive's performance is derived from a new single-platform design consisting of a chip controller, NAND flash, and special drive firmware developed by Samsung. "This single platform is designed to easily adapt to Samsung's 40-(nanometer) class NAND flash memory," according to the company.

It consumes 1.1 watts of power, versus 2 or more watts for a comparable HDD. Similar in weight to a 128GB SSD, at 81 grams, the 2.5-inch multilevel cell 256GB SSD has the same 9.5-millimeter drive thickness.

Samsung's 256GB SSD is also available with optional proprietary encryption programming that provides full-disk encryption, a key feature for some corporate users.

Pricing was not immediately available.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I just got this email from Microsoft Foldershare!


See the email below my comment (in blue)

My comment: it seems that MS is changing some things with foldershare, a program that they bought from ByteTaxi a few years ago. I used this program right from the very start before microsoft bought it.. its a great FREE way to synchronize files from 2 different computers (between your own computers or 2 friends).

I still use it all the time, and I must note that the shared folders of LIVE MESSENGER will be REMOVED in live messenger 2009. I am using the beta now.. and they have removed it. Its a good thing because it had a LOT OF PROBLEMS! lol So good riddens shared folders, welcome WINDOWS LIVE SYNC (aka foldeshare 2.0).

HEADS UP you will need to upgrade as some point:

Dear FolderShare user,
We're contacting you to let you know what's next for FolderShare, and to make you aware of some important changes.
In December, we plan to announce a product called Windows Live Sync. You can think of it as FolderShare 2.0. It's going to look familiar and offer the same great features, plus:

  • More folders and files—sync up to 20 folders with 20,000 files each.
  • Integration with Windows Live ID—no more extra sign-in stuff to remember.
  • Integration with the Recycle Bin—no more separate Trash folder to fiddle with.
  • Unicode support—sync files in other languages.

A huge part of Sync's success story depends on FolderShare users like you. When Sync releases, FolderShare goes into retirement. That means your FolderShare software will stop working and will ask you to upgrade to Sync. Once you do, Sync will automatically rebuild your personal folders. We expect a lot of new users when Sync is released, so if you can't sign in right away, please give it a little time.
Here's the part you need to pay attention to: Sync will not be able to rebuild your shared libraries. If you have a lot of shared libraries, you should hop over to the FolderShare website while it's still available and copy all that information. You'll need it to rebuild your shared libraries in Sync.
Thanks for being a FolderShare user! We're excited about delivering an even better file-synchronization experience to customers like you. We hope you'll come along as we move forward with Windows Live Sync.
The Windows Live Sync (formerly FolderShare) team

Foldershare is a free program from microsoft.

Dr. Seuss Explains Computers:


If a packet hits a pocket on a socket on a port, and the bus is interrupted as a very last resort, and the address of the memory makes your floppy disk abort, then the socket packet pocket has an error to report.
If your cursor finds a menu item followed by a dash, and the double-clicking icon puts your window in the trash, and your data is corrupted 'cause the index doesn't hash, then your situation's hopeless and your system's gonna crash.
If the label on the cable on the table at your house, says the network is connected to the button on your mouse, but your packets want to tunnel on another protocol, that's repeatedly rejected by the printer down the hall, and your screen is all distorted by the side effects of gauss, so your icons in the window are as wavy as a souse, then you may as well reboot it and go out with a bang, 'cause as sure as I'm a poet, your system's gonna hang.
When the copy of your floppy's getting sloppy on the disk, and the microcode instructions cause unnecessary risk, when you have to flash your memory and try to RAM your ROM, quickly turn off the computer and be sure to call your Mom!!

Ultimate Windows Tweaker - Tweak UI For Windows Vista

Ultimate Windows Tweaker is a Tweak UI Utility for tweaking and optimizing Windows Vista, 32-bit & 64-bit. It can simply be downloaded and used as a portable application to customize your Windows Vista to meet your requirements. With judicious tweaking, It can make your system faster, more stable, and more secure with just a few mouse clicks. The tweaker detects whether you have IE 7 or IE 8 installed and accordingly offers you the relevant tweaks only.


The utility has a simple easy-to-use user interface, with the tweaks being classified in separate heads based of their functionality. Most tweaks are hidden inside Vista, and what this tweaker does is to try and put the useful one's in one place. It has over 130 tweaks, but is yet, just a 370 KB .exe file, which does not require an install.

Details of Tweaks :

The tweaks are classified under seven categories and can be accessed through a common interface, just like your Windows Vista Control Panel.
1) Personalization,
2) User Accounts & UAC,
3) System & Performance,
4) Security,
5) Internet Explorer (IE7 / IE8)
6) Network Optimization
7) Additional Options

For details, click here.

System Requirements :

Ultimate Windows Tweaker is developed for Windows Vista and supported in all available editions under 32 and 64 Bit. Earlier version of Windows - Windows 95, 98, ME, NT and XP are not supported.

Minimum system configuration :
  • Microsoft Windows Vista
  • 800x600 screen resolution with 256 colors
  • 5 MB free disk space
  • Internet Explorer 7 or higher
Recommended system configuration :
  • Microsoft Windows Vista
  • 1024x768 screen resolution with 32-bit colors
  • 10 MB free disk space
  • Internet Explorer 7 or higher

Mimic Vista's File Rename Feature in XP


Via lifehackerbetter-rename

The only Vista feature (honestly) I hoped that XP could have is a very simple one. In Explorer if you hit F2 to rename a file Vista automatically selects the file name WITHOUT the extension, something that does not happen in XP. I cannot begin to describe how frustrating it is to hit F2+Shift+<-<-<-<- every time I need to rename a file. Can you help me?
Renaming Randy

Dear Randy,
I'm all over this one, and it's AutoHotkey to the rescue!

It's very possible that there are better ways to add this functionality, but it's wildly easy to do with AutoHotkey, so that's what I've done. Like you said, every time you hit F2 to rename a file, you also need to hit Shift+Left Arrow four times. Using AutoHotkey, I've just automated that process.

If you're just interested in getting the functionality, either download the Better Rename.exe file or download the AutoHotkey source.

The Complete Guide to Speeding Up Your PC's Startup


You just hit the power button your PC, and now you've got enough time to brew a fresh pot of coffee for the entire office—because that's how long it takes for your computer to go from "on" to "ready to work." If your PC's bogged down by a bunch of programs that automatically start up when it does, it can take forever to get started every morning. Without a major hardware upgrade, there's not much you can do to cut the time it takes for Windows to actually boot—but you can trim and tweak the amount of time it takes for your desktop to get to a working state. Let's take a look at a few ways you can cut your Windows' desktop's loading times using built-in utilities and third-party tools.

When you install a new piece of software on your computer these days, more often than not it will set a little bit of itself to start up automatically when your PC does, either to check for updates, make it seem faster, or just remind you that it's there at all with a little icon in your system tray. Problem is, when you install lots of software but don't use it all, these little startup entries can suck away CPU cycles, memory, and time. Reclaim them by removing the ones you don't need.

Remove Startup Items Without Downloading a Thing

While many programs promise to clean up your startup for you, you can make quite a few adjustments in Windows itself, without using any kind of extra tools.

The best, safest, and most basic place to start is in your Windows Start menu's Startup program group. Navigate to it and see what programs appear there. Right-click on any one and choose Delete if you don't need it starting up on its own.

Once you've done that, it's time to bring out the big guns. Windows can also start up items planted in your registry automatically. To see what those are, from the Windows Start menu, choose Run..., and type msconfig then hit Enter to start the Windows System Configuration Utility. Switch to the Startup tab to see a more comprehensive list of what's starting up automatically. Here's what it looks like.

Now, this list can seem opaque and confusing. What is ctfmon or RTHDCPL? The command column, which sometimes lists a full path to the item's location, can sometimes give you a clue as to what the heck an item actually is. As always, Google is also your friend in these situations. From here you can uncheck items to stop them from starting up. Don't uncheck stuff just because you don't know what it is; uncheck stuff you know you don't need. For instance, if you're not a big iTunes or Quicktime user but you've got the installed for occasional use, uncheck QTTask and iTunesHelper.Once you've unchecked items in this utility, when you restart your computer, Windows will prompt you, saying that it's using "selective startup." That's ok—you can always renable items by typing the msconfig command in the Run box again.

Messing with msconfig takes somewhat of a brave and savvy Windows user, but a few third-party Windows tweaking and cleaning tools offer startup managers that are more user-friendly.

Download and Run a Startup Cleaner Utility

There are literally a gazillion Windows tweaking utilities that include startup management capabilities, but lets take a look at two good ones.

CCleaner (which stands for "Crap Cleaner", see our original review) can scan your system for all sorts of extras and get rid of them, but you're interested in the Startup manager. Hit the Tools button, then the Startup button to get there. Here's what your list will look like. As you can see, it offers a little more information than msconfig above (in the Program and File column), and that may help you decipher what's program is what. You can disable and delete items from your Startup using those respective buttons.

If you don't want to install more software in order to clean up your system (which makes sense), System Explorer (see our original review) offers a portable version, and its startup manager is beefy, with hooks into the registry, an online virus checker, and even Google searches for file names. In the System tab, hit the Startup tab to take a look at what's auto-starting on your PC. Here's what it looks like.

As you can see, using the right-click context menu you can go straight to the registry editor, or do a search on or Google for the item. Also, the program's publisher and file path are included, which offer more information about what's what and what you can afford to disable.

Besides CCleaner and SystemExplorer, Lifehacker readers also like MZ Ultimate Tweaker and RegToy.

Delay Item Start to Get to Work Faster

Of course, it's not that one program that's starting up automatically and slowing down your whole PC—it's all of them in aggregate. You may audit your startup list and realize that yes, you do want all these programs to start. But maybe you don't need them to start up at the exact moment you're dying to get into Outlook and read your email, or work on that urgent report. The Startup Delayer utility (our review) does just that—it delays items from starting up from anywhere from 20 seconds to several minutes to hours so you can start working sooner. For instance, if your printer driver pre-loads but you're not printing the moment you log on, you can delay it for a minute or two. Similarly, I really don't need the Java Updater process starting its work before I do, so it is a good candidate for delaying. Here's what Startup Delayer looks like.

Don't Fall for the Myths

There are a lot of myths and misconceptions and misguided "secrets" to speeding up your PC published out there. Don't fall for them. If you delve deep enough into Windows optimization tips online you'll find tips about deleting page files, cleaning out your registry, setting your PC to use multiple cores manually, and lots of other authoritative-sounding tweaks. Before you do any of that, check out the How-To Geek's awesome guide to debunking Windows performance-tweaking myths.

Have you had any startup editing revelations? What's your favorite PC startup speed-up utility? Post it in the comments.

Via lifehacker

Five Best Remote Desktop Tools


This was article blelow posted originally on lifehacker.. They only mentioned crossloop ( in the end as an “honorable mention”  but I have used ALL of these solutions and the best ones are clearly remote desktop and crossloop. But these 2 have different goals. Remote desktop is used mainly to control your own computer, while crossloop is to help other people and fix their computers. I use both all the time.. hey Im even writing this post using remote desktop from my laptop to my desktop! lol…  I love crossloop and im not saying it only because Im one of the first users to embrace it and talk about it to everyone. I know its good because i have used everything else! lol

Whether you want quick access to your home computer from anywhere in the world or you're the go-to IT person for your friends and family, remote desktop applications are a godsend. Even better: They're easier than ever to set up. With the right remote desktop tool, you can access your home computer as though you're sitting right in front of it— no matter where you are, no matter what you're doing. Earlier this week we asked you to share your favorite remote desktop tools, and today we're back with the top five answers. Keep reading for a closer look at each solution, then cast your vote for the remote desktop solution you like best.

LogMeIn (Windows/Mac)

LogMeIn was one of the first popular remote desktop solutions aimed squarely at consumers, offering a quick, no-hassle set up to remotely control your computer from the comfort of any web browser. LogMeIn comes in a variety of flavors, but the two that are designed to satisfy your remote desktop needs are LogMeIn Pro and LogMeIn Free. A Pro account adds more features to the service, including drag-and-drop file transfer, file sync, and meeting tools. LogMeIn Pro isn't exactly cheap, at $13/month or $70/year, and while a Pro account offers more features than a free account, many users are still perfectly happy with LogMeIn Free.

TightVNC (Windows/Linux)

TightVNC is a cross-platform, open-source remote desktop application. With TightVNC, you need to set up a VNC server on the computer you wish to access remotely; you can then remotely access that computer from anywhere else with any VNC viewer. We've already detailed how to set up TightVNC on your home computer, and if you'd prefer controlling TightVNC from a web browser to carrying a VNC client with you, you can also control TightVNC from the web.

TeamViewer (Windows/Mac)

TeamViewer—like LogMeIn—offers free and paid accounts for remote controlling any PC. Unlike LogMeIn, TeamViewer is free for all non-commercial users. It doesn't offer browser-based remote control, instead using small utilities to connect between computers. TeamViewer is even available as a portable application you can carry around on your thumb drive. Whether you want to set up personal remote computing or you're pull frequent tech support duty, TeamViewer has a lot to offer.

Windows Remote Desktop Connection (Windows)

Windows Remote Desktop—the default remote desktop app that comes bundled with Windows—is still more than enough for most Windows users looking for full-featured remote desktop control. If you've never happened upon the Remote Desktop Connection application buried in the Accessories folder of your Start menu, now might be a good time to try it out. Just be sure you've enabled remote desktop access.

UltraVNC (Windows)

UltraVNC is an open-source, Windows-only remote desktop application. UltraVNC supports a hefty feature set, including text chat, file transfer support, and support for optional plug-ins. Although UltraVNC only runs on Windows, you can still access your computer from any operating system using your web browser.

Now that you've seen the best, it's time to vote for your favorite:

Which Is the Best Remote Desktop Tool? (Poll Closed)

UltraVNC 16% (1238 votes)

feedback bar

Windows Remote Desktop Connection 24% (1918 votes)

feedback bar

TeamViewer 9% (692 votes)

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TightVNC 14% (1154 votes)

feedback bar

LogMeIn 27% (2120 votes)

feedback bar

Other 11% (837 votes)

feedback bar

Which Is the Best Remote Desktop Tool?
( surveys)

This week's honorable mentions go out to CrossLoop and mRemote. Whether or not your beloved remote desktop app made the top five, let's hear more about it in the comments.

BubbleTimer Webapp Helps Track Time and Set Goals

Based on the Emergent Task Timer worksheets from David Seah, BubbleTimer is a quick and easy to use web application for budgeting, tracking and working towards time management goals. Set up a series of activities, such as work, physical activity, entertainment and personal projects and click to fill in the bubbles representing fifteen minute periods of time. As priorities change or you end up spending time on one task instead of another, you can change a selection from one activity to another. At the end of the timeline are targets you can set, such as more reading or time at work and less time playing video games or watching television, and the goal will change from red to green (and vice-versa) as you live up or down to your personal goals. Export the data, share it with a colleague or print out a copy to carry with you throughout the day. BubbleTimer is free to try for two weeks with registration, with a subscription costing $20 a year.

Via BubbleTimer [via David Seah]  lol oh the endless chain of blogosphere!

DimDim Hosts Your Webinars for Free


If you work in a corporate culture that's fond of meetings, or an industry that involves lots of long-distance collaboration, you've no doubt heard an increasing amount about "webinars" lately. The web-based meetings, usually involving collaborative editing, whiteboard brainstorming, slideshow presentations, and/or live desktop sharing, are helpful when teaching a computer concept or technique, providing a one-way presentation a la PowerPoint, or presenting ideas and getting feedback from clients. Lots of providers compete for the largely corporate market, but at least one site, DimDim, provides free web conference hosting for groups of 20 or less. We gave one of them a try and took a few screenshots, so read on to see what you can get for free in the webinar world.

DimDim not only offers free sign-ups for those wanting to host seminars for up to 20 participants, but offers up its hosting platform for free as an open source package, for those with the server space to do something with it. DimDim doesn't ask much more than a username, email, and password, and only from the host—those you invite to join only need to hit a connection link in the email that gets sent out when your webinars are scheduled and then starting.

The system requirements for anyone participating are basically having a decently high-speed connection and be using either Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Safari. If a host wants to screencast their desktop, it usually requires a separate (free) program to be downloaded and launched automatically.

Each sign-up also gets a unique access key for conference calling—the old style of tele-conferencing. I tried calling in while hosting a meeting, but ended up being alone in a conference call, waiting for others to join. So either DimDim is offering this functionality as a separate enticement for lower-tech users, or I'm not quite doing it right (equally likely).

You can set up DimDim conferences in a lot of different ways, depending on your own setup and those of your participants. You can go audio & video, audio-only, or none of the above, if you just want to text-chat. You can rotate three microphone privileges amongst three other participants, choose whether your guests can see each other or not, and (perhaps the most helpful feature) set a time limit to your meeting, which ticks away in the upper-right corner and might help everyone stay a bit more focused.

I tested DimDim out with my (very patient) wife sitting in the same room and a friend connecting from across the city. Two were on residential cable connections and the third on DSL. The whiteboard, chat, and audio functions were surprisingly snappy and responsive, though I found out that using my laptop's built-in microphone and speakers was a bad idea on many levels—everybody could hear the pounding of my typing, and there were a number of looping echos. The desktop view sharing from my system was a bit laggy, however, and occasionally required my asking the guests to manually hit "refresh" in the main window. That's using residential upload speeds, though, and dependent on what else was uploading at the time.

Here's a full shot of DimDim in action, scaled just a bit to fit on this page. (Note: I lack a decent webcam, so we used another participant's camera to try out video conferencing, not shown in this shot):

In all, I found DimDim to give its free users a surprising amount of flexibility and functionality for the price, and would be interested to find out what options set apart the other webinar-hosting companies in the field.





Via lifehacker