Category Archives: software

Windows 7 should you upgrade or clean install, oh and what about Vista?

Vista Blue Screens, showing it's Death stance

With the introduction of Windows 7, we are at another crossroads in time. Microsoft is releasing Windows 7 in late October, in my opinion that day will be the death of Vista. The major reason is because worldwide acceptance was never on the radar for Vista, EVER! and Windows 7 is ready to pounce. Microsoft can show the share holders the value of Vista but when that value is inflated with numbers that come from new PC sales, not existing customers upgrading, also not tied to the number of New PC sold with the Windows XP downgrade, I hope you see the point I’m making.  Vista was never accepted in very wide circles, you had to take it when buying a new computer and this made the numbers looked very good for Microsoft in doing that kind of a move.

Many small to medium sized businesses never moved from Windows XP, and we know why that never happen. Microsoft had finally over time gotten something right with the release of Windows XP SP2 and the OS (Operating System) was so stable, that you were in awe that it could continue to run for weeks and even months without crapping out. Microsoft had to push back the end of Lifecycle on Windows XP, because it was so stable, and the heat they took for saying it was coming to an end without a good alternative had many people crying foul.

One of the other major problems with Vista was the overly abundant versions of the OS from the simple OS to the most complex and secure model, I believe there were 6 different versions, and for a consumer wanting to upgrade from any other OS they had a technical decision that most just could not make so the easiest thing to do was just to stay with what you had.

Windows 7 is coming on October 22, 2009

I remember when Windows XP dropped and people were at the Mall ready to purchase it at 12:01AM. Some people were camped out at the door steps of the local best buy looking to grab a first copy. Microsoft had that kind of effect on people (geeks) but now days everyone knows bugs are gonna be an issue with any brand new OS. My father always said “Never buy a new car the first year it’s in production” in my opinion my father knew what a beta tester was even way back then.  Even Mac has had it share of bugs with the Snow Leopard release. Since we all know how Microsoft is famous for releasing a product, to the masses knowing damn well it’s an unstable release, some will fear the same with Window 7 and will not brave the weather to be in a store at 12:01AM to purchase the OS.

You have a decision to make, upgrade of clean install?

With any OS you have to make a very important decision about weather you should upgrade, or install the new OS as a clean install (meaning you delete the data on the hard drive and install the new OS on the formatted hard drive). Upgrades are an unknown factor when it comes to computer systems, meaning that you could have a smooth install or one that deletes all your hard work that you have acquired over the years. It’s always a good idea to have a full backup of your computer system, from software files, to personal photos, and personal data files from your most used applications.

Once you start the process of upgrading you can’t turn back so weigh the decision very seriously. Take the time to read the information about the upgrade process. One thing I will say is that Microsoft will throw a ton of PDF’s at you explaining how to do something with their OS. It’s truly a Google, or should I say Bing search away.

Why upgrade?

The major reason you should upgrade to any OS is because of the new capabilities of the software, along with refinements in speed, access, and security to name a few. It’s amazing how much faster a system will run with the right equipment inside your computer. Understand that a lot of times when someone upgrades their PC they are doing this for reasons only they know. Some people notice how much faster the new OS will access their data, some people will notice how finding items, and doing normal task will speed up with a simple upgrade. The upgrade is supposed to give you access to possible new features that were not included in the older previous versions of the OS.

Why Clean install?

Clean install, is the best way to start your OS life with a existing computer. Note: If you already have a brand new computer with Windows 7 installed you will not need to even read this post. Clean install means you wipe the hard drive of your computer with many of the free (disk erase) tools on the net. Understand this will totally delete all Software, and Personal files from your PC. You will never be able to get them back so make sure you backup your data and personal files, there I said it again. Backup, Backup, Backup oh and don’t forget to look at the backups once your done. I’ve seen first hand a company backup data, but the never looked at said data before wiping out a hard drive and poof, the damage is done. One company I know of was totally down for 7 days, they had no computer systems to use and lost a lot of business because backups were never checked.

That clean install is just like having a new computer, remember when you first bought your computer home from the store and you took the time to set it up and when you turned it on it was so fast you thought it was a mistake. That is what a clean install will do for you, if you just upgrade some of those old files and programs are gonna start up as your new systems starts, thus slowing down your computer. I suggest you either consult a real technology professional, when doing a upgrade or clean install. Or at least I suggest you take the time to view some of the thousands of pages that Microsoft has out there to help you upgrade your system.

The jury is still out on how popular the new Windows 7 OS will be, but I can say this, I’ve been using a version of Windows 7 that seems to be working like a charm and I have had no issues, oh except the time I closed my laptop while using VMWare on my Macbook Pro, while Windows 7 was running in the background processing a programs data (blue Screen of Death). I will probably say I caused that crash, with all my awesome geekness.

TBTR

Please backup your blackberry, before it’s too late.

3254923387_ca4d070d0c

As an avid blackberry user and former Network Administrator I have come across a ton of scenarios where backup was needed but not practiced.  Some methods I’ve used to fix these problems come from knowledge base articles, to online forums, to just plain old common sense.  There is one thing that as a tech junkie I have to talk about today.  That subject is about Backing up your data, While there are many articles on the net about backing up your personal (Computer) data many don’t talk about backing up your cell phone data.

I have been a blackberry user for over 5 years now, and in that time it’s come to my attention over and over again, the question is not if I will lose data it’s when?  That “when” you may never know, but since blackberries and Smart Phones in general are the norm now days.  We all have to take the proper precautions to save our data.  Some of us have saved data for years, and while most people can’t understand why someone would want to save so much useless data.  I have a ton of reasons I’ll go into on another post some day.

Why Backup your Smart Phone

Simply you have over time added more and more task, contacts, memo’s, notes, and other things to your Smart Phone that if you lost today, you have no where to get it back.  A lot of these phones can carry an enormous amount of data including files, pictures, calendars and other things.  These items are usually stored in the ROM of your smart phone.  Wikipedia.org defines ROM as Read-only memory (usually known by its acronym, ROM) is a class of storage media used in computers and other electronic devices. Because data stored in ROM cannot be modified (at least not very quickly or easily), it is mainly used to distribute firmware (software that is very closely tied to specific hardware, and unlikely to require frequent updates). ROM cannot be removed from your phone, it’s a permanent storage area within your device.

This ROM is your internal MEMORY which saves your data, pictures, and other items to your device.  Some smart phones also have a memory flash card that lets you create a place to store more data, that you can also remove from your phone and even access with a computer given the right software sometimes. Usually this flash card only saves pictures, music, video, and items that you record, but it does not save any contacts, calendar, task or other items that are part of the phones software.

I understand ROM, but tell me why I need to backup

A Smart phone is just like a computer it can fail, and if it does will you be able to recover that special number, or contact calendar from your device?  In most cases NO, you will never get that data back and it’s over.  You have to start from scratch with entering all your contacts again, which means an enormous amount of your personal time, not to mention the loss of critical items that are gone forever.  Don’t even think about sending your device to a specialty tech shop that deals in lost data, if you do plan on spending hundreds of dollars.

You don’t need to lost your data, at least you can always have a backup with in reach at any given moment.  Most Smart phones come with software that you can use to import contacts, task, calendar functions and other things that help.  Along with that most of them allow you to backup your data right to the same computer that you use to do all these functions.  I’m only going to discuss the blackberry method today but remember there are many manufactures out there that also do this, please consult your device manual for more information.  Better yet call your carrier, and ask for the data team or someone that can help you set up backups with your phone and the accompanying software, that is what they are there for in my opinion.

Blackberry backup method

You will need:

  • Blackberry device
  • USB Cable

Since I’m all about saving time and allowing you to get the best resources for answers I took the time to sift the net and found some resoruces that should help you in the process.  They tell you how to make that backup of your device and should help as a written example of how to do this, I hope my words hit home.  Remember this can happen to anyone, it’s only a matter of time.

Indiana University With a Blackberry, how do I backup and restore data

BlackBerry Cool Backing up your Blackberry (Cool Screenshots)

BlackBerry Rocks How to backup and restore your Blackberry (Even Cooler updated Screenshots)

TBTR (Comments are always welcome)

Wednesday Download – WinMerge

It’s not everyday that you will need a utility like WinMerge but, I will tell you this it can save you a ton of time. WinMerge 2.8.6 is another great Open Source tool created with you the user in mind. Why do you need WinMerge? Why should you even give WinMerge a chance to grace your desktop real estate? I think if you work with text based files such as HTML, CSS, or just Text files in general then this tool will help you a lot.

Visual differencing and merging of text files

Say your working on a new project where a client has updated his HTML code and your trying to fix the problem they are having because something is just not right. If you use WinMerge you can input the old HTML code on one side, and the New HTML code on another and compare the files. You can see where the changes have been made and with that being said, fix the issue without having to go line for line in a HTML document that could be pretty long. WinMerge will color code the changes and show you where the differences are no longer will you have to rely on site alone.

Handles DOS, UNIX and MAC text file formats

Not only does this tool let you see the differences of files, but if you want it can Merge the files together to create a new document. This is a great feature where changes have been made and you want to make sure to keep all text streamlined and in working order. WinMerge will do the trick with ease.

Website: http://www.winmerge.org/

Download Link: WinMerge 2.8.6

Enjoy,

TBTR

12 seconds video clips isn’t that 140 characters.

You mean to tell me you have 12 seconds to leave a video about what your doing? Don’t we already have Micro-blogging sites by the dozen. How much time and effort went into making a service or site called 12 seconds. Talk about trying to get the VC money, and then some ridiculous conglomerate to buy you out. I’m so sick and tired of people piggy backing on other services. They say ” oh well what if we decided to take what they do but flip it.” 12 seconds will not be along for the ride too much longer. They want money, they need money to keep it going, so who’s gonna pay up some VC that has nothing but money to hang out the window. When you think about it 12 seconds as a company should last about 12 seconds long.

Most of the videos I see on the site, suck because they try to go past the 12 seconds and then the video looks stupid. The thing just cuts off WTH, I’m listening and your cutting off the video because you forgot this is only 12 seconds long. Think about why it’s only 12 seconds and you will see it’s not because of some crap about we figured that 12 seconds is about as long as the brain can stand to watch some online webclip crap. It’s because the ratio of video to users with 12 seconds cost less then just letting your user go crazy with unlimited time to do nothing but record their living room. One thing is that with the time constraints it does make for interesting videos if done right, I will agree with that.

12seconds.tv allows friends and family to record and share short video updates about what they are doing or where they are. You can use a webcam or a cellphone. It’s a FREE, easy, and fun way to stay in touch.

This is my rant and the truth is we should all be ashamed to follow as the mass of people try every new service or web 2.blah out. Right now this micro-blogging is all over the place and honestly it’s getting out of hand. Who’s gonna take the lead and stay in it for the long haul. We all know Twitters problems about money they turned off SMS for overseas users, and in Japan they have turned on the ads which also lets you know the ads are coming soon. Is it just me or is Pownce the only one that could see, if you give the users something great they can use we will pay for it. Or was pownce so hard up for money that they had to ask for money up front just to keep things going with out losing the farm if you know what I mean.

My prediction is that 12 seconds will only last just about that long 12 months, then some VC or competitor will come in and buy the thing lock, stock, and barrel. I guess I’m a little upset that I didn’t think of such an idea cause the truth this I want an account but I’m so tired of signing up for stuff all over the net.

Enjoy the success 12 seconds,

TBTR

Photosynth=EPIC FAIL

Photosynth has failed to deliver the demand was high and the Server Administrators were higher. Photosynth from Microsoft launched just over 12 hours ago and the website is down, and you thought Microsoft does not have these type of issues. Photosynth is a cool new program from MS that takes pictures and kind of turns them into a 3D pic it’s some amazing stuff check this video out:

Maybe they will have the site up and working soon but we all should remember just because you have Billions in the bank don’t think it can’t happen to you..

Enjoy,

TBTR