Saturday, July 04, 2009

Windows 7 to RTM on July 13, 2009?

According to GeekSmack, Microsoft will announce that Windows 7 has hit the Release to Manufacturing (RTM) milestone on July 13. Unsurprisingly, the July 13 date coincides with the kickoff of the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference,

Microsoft Bing Dings Google, Searches Twitter Tweets

Microsoft adds real-time search capabilities to its Bing search engine as it seeks to knock Google from its search perch. Now users can use Bing to find the latest Twitter tweets from celebrities and other persons of note, including high-tech journalists. The move comes as startups CrowdEye, Collecta and others are propagating the Web with real-time search

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Some Vista users say they're getting the Ultimate shaft | Beyond Binary - CNET News

"Microsoft promised that by purchasing the pricey Ultimate edition of Vista users would get all kinds of extras.

However, for many, those extras turned out to be little more than a few screensavers and a poker game, prompting some significant grousing."

In my looking around the web I found Costco is taking orders for Windows 7 for Windows® 7 Professional Upgrade for $97.99 and Windows 7 Home Premium upgrade $47.99.
You have until July 11 to Pre-Order your copy of Windows 7.

I like Windows 7 much better than Vista. I have HAD Vista Ultimate.


Tuesday, June 30, 2009

FireFox 3.5 available Tuesday with massive speed gain.

Firefox 3.5 has plenty of new features that make it worth the upgrade, but the real reason we love it so much is the massive speed gain.

Pirate Bay Bought Out Suddenly Respects Copyrights

Swedish software firm buys The Pirate Bay for £4.7m
Global Gaming Factory X buys file-sharing site The Pirate Bay, promising that copyright holders will get paid

Monday, June 29, 2009

Thoughts on Windows 7 SKUs

It is rare that I link directly to Microsoft and even more rare that I link to a product page, but I thought it was fitting in writing this piece about Windows 7. Beyond that I have some really nice things to say about what MS did this time around.

Let me start with my take on the many Windows 7 SKUs. There are really only three that non-enterprise, US upgrading customers will ever need to think about. They are called Windows 7 Home Premium; Windows 7 Professional; and Windows 7 Ultimate. Each boxed copy includes both 32 and 64 bit DVDs, unlike Vista which only included both 32 and 64 bit with Ultimate.

One of the best sites out there that describes what features each of these SKUs includes is this page at Paul Thurrott's SuperSite for Windows. What you will notice is, that unlike Vista, each SKU is more comprehensive. Higher tier SKUs of these three include all of the features of the lower tiered SKUs. In Vista, for example, Business (Professional) included a fax utility, Home Premium included the Media Center, and only Ultimate included both. In Windows 7 both Home Premium and Professional (Business), includes both fax and Windows Media Center.

The biggest feature that Windows 7 Professional offers over Home Premium is XP Mode. While Professional includes some other nice features, to me XP Mode is the dealmaker. Ultimate offers very little extra for the vast majority of non-enterprise users over Professional, but if you just have to have Bitlocker, Ultimate is the SKU you want.

It is important that users have this information now because the pre-order deal where you can get Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade for $49.99 and Windows 7 Professional Upgrade for $99.99 will end July 11 in the US, or "until supplies last". My personal opinion about the "until supplies last" is that they will last until July 11; but I may be wrong.

I've ordered 2 copies of Windows 7 Professional for our Windows XP desktops, where we will need to have the option of XP Mode, and 1 copy of Home Premium for my laptop where I don't need that function. Had this pre-order special not occured, I would only be upgrading my laptop which currently runs Vista. By selling me $250 worth of upgrades as opposed to $120 worth, I see this as a win for me and a win for Microsoft (even when including their cost to produce three packages as opposed to one). I have no doubt that MS's net profit from me and others like me will be greater than it would have been without this offer.

Of course all our needs vary, so look at the comparison charts, and if you know you want Windows 7 go for it (you can still test drive it by downloading the release candidate now). This special pre-order upgrade pricing is a great opportunity if either Windows 7 Home Premium or Professional will meet your needs. For the vast majority of us, I believe that one of these two SKUs will do what we need and want it to do.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

OnComputers Radio show Podcast 06-28-09

This is the On Computers Radio show podcast for 06-28-09. You can listen live every Sunday from 10AM to 1PM Pacific that's 1PM to 4PM Eastern. Join us for the live show and chat. If you prefer, you can download the same MP3 file here via ftp.

Earl's Cyber Steals and Deals

Dell G2410 24" Full HD LED Widescreen LCD $188 at Dell Business
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New: Dell E2209W 22" Widescreen LCD Display for $143 + free shipping
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New: Hitachi 500GB Serial ATA 3Gbps Internal Hard Drive for $45 after rebate + free shipping offers the OEM Hitachi Deskstar T7K500 500GB Serial ATA 3Gb/s Serial ATA Internal Hard Drive, model no. HDP725050GLA360, for $54.99 with free shipping. This $10 mail-in rebate cuts it to $44.99 ($0.09/GB)., factory-sealed unit. It features a 16MB cache and runs at 7200 rpm. Rebate expires June 30.

Nextar X3i-03 Portable GPS w/ Text-to-Speech SAVE $70.00 FREE BUDGET SHIPPING price: $69.99 List price: $139.99

Western Digital Caviar Green 1TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Internal Hard Drive - OEM $89.99 Your Price: $79.99 With Promo Code

Two Seagate 1.5TB SATA 3Gbps Internal Hard Drives for $200 + free shipping Dell Home offers two Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB Serial ATA 3Gb/s Internal Hard Drives, model no. ST31500341AS, for $269.99 with free shipping. Apply coupon code "QSRDBGRSGP7MFG" to chop them to $199.99 ($0.07/GB). 7200 rpm and feature a 32MB cache

Refurbished Linksys Wireless-N USB Network Adapter for $20 + free shipping via eBay DailyDeal offers the refurbished Linksys Wireless-N USB Network Adapter, model no. WUSB300N, for $19.99. With free shipping

Home Style Outdoor Cordless Rechargeable Bug Zapper for $20 + free shipping offers the Home Style Outdoor Living Cordless Rechargeable Bug Zapper, model no. 72043, for $19.99 with free shipping. generates 2,200 volts of electricity and features a rechargeable battery and AC adapter

Links from the Gregg Zone

1) Okay here we go again; to start off the week I had something catch my eye about airplanes. Seems there is an outfit in Switzerland getting ready to fly a solar powered plane around the world, using not a single ounce of fuel. When one considers the Wright Brothers first sustained flight was in 1903, then just 21 year’s later the first circumnavigation of the planet, another twenty years we had jets. Considering the Sunseeker 2 just made news flying over the Alps on April 20th this year, link here and now another project is already planning a circumnavigation, looks like speedy progress to me.
2) This is something coming on the market that invokes a lot of innovation, and for me produced a lot of weird thoughts in my mind. Not sure what to think about it, on some levels sounds like a great idea, but then I think about the military applications, second generations, pets, well just not sure. I will let you decide we are talking about robotic furniture with a taste for flesh it eats pests like insects, mice, and not sure what else, then digests the critters and uses them as bio-fuel to power themselves,
3) Here is one that surprised me a little, and also caused me some deeper contemplation of what intelligence is, at least when related to numbers and basic math. It would appear some animals have a basic awareness of numbers, and some math. They just do not have language to discuss what it means limiting their ability to use it in a meaningful way.
4) It has been awhile since I used anything relating to UFO’s, I got caught up in the crop circle thing again last week, and I see them as related in some way. When I ran across this site I thought I would use it as it seems pretty good for keeping up with what is current.
5) For my geek link of the week, something I hope will prove to be wrong, I think this was sent to me by Troll, but it has been in the folder for a couple of weeks, so I am not sure, if so thanks. Some things just seem to follow patterns I don’t like and this may be one. The article predicts the internet will be free for less than five years. Somehow sounds par for the course, but I hope they are wrong,