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Uncategorized | Windows Vista @ TechnoReality - Part 3

Windows Vista @ TechnoReality

Micorosft Windows Vista & Compatible Items

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


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Here are the first ten go to

Microsoft.com for the other 90

1. It makes using your PC a breeze

Windows Vista features a breakthrough design and easy-to-use organizational tools that make it simpler to get things done and get on with life! Find what you need instantly, on your PC or on the web, with Instant Search. Bring more clarity to your tasks with the spectacular Windows Aero user experience and Windows Flip 3DA, allowing you to see everything you’re working on at a glance.

2. Because all of your music is just a remote control click away

Navigate and play your music collection with just the click of a remote control! Windows Media Center and a compatible remote controlM let you quickly search and select tracks visually by album art, or by artist, album title, song, year, or genre. Share your Media Center screen and remoteM and give everyone the chance to mix and play their favorites.

3. It’s the safest version of Windows ever

Windows Vista provides better protection for your PC, your personal information, and your family than any previous version of Windows—with new security tools like Windows Defender, anti-spam and phishing filters, and Parental Controls. Automatic backups, Performance Self-Tuning, and built-in diagnostics help you keep your data protected and your PC running smoothly.

4. See your world in a whole new light

The breakthrough design of the Windows AeroA user interface brings new clarity to your PC experience. With spectacular visual effects, like translucent glass-like menu bars that let you see behind your application window, you’re one click away from everything you’re working with.

5. It can find your stuff

All-new search and organization tools in Windows Vista will help you quickly find what you need on your hard drive or on the web. Instantly find and launch a document, photo, e-mail, song, video, file, or program on your PC with Instant Search.

6. Because you’re always on the run

Windows Vista offers new mobility features that let you stay productive and entertained on the go. Windows Mobility Center, Network and Sharing Center, and Sync Center help you stay connected and keep your PC and portable devices up to date with your latest calendar, contacts, and music. Choose an ultra-light Tablet PCA and use a digital pen to handwrite notes or make sketches on the run. Take a break and enjoy your favorite TV shows, movies, music, and games wherever you find yourself, with Windows Media CenterM on your notebook PC.

7. Because you can freeze time

Organize a lifetime of photos and home movies with ease using Windows Photo Gallery. Tag your photos by date, keyword, star rating, or any identifying label you choose—so you can find them when you want them.

8. Your PC can take care of itself

Performance Self Tuning, Self-Healing technologies, Built-in Diagnostics, and repair tools keep your computer running at its best and provide automatic fixes, so you can spend less time dealing with problems and enjoy a more reliable PC experience.

9. Unchain your mobile PC

Network and Sharing Center lets you set up a wireless networkN at home so you can experience the freedom of working from your living room, backyard, or anywhere in your home.

10. Surf more safely

Dynamic Security Protection in Windows Internet Explorer 7 helps protect your PC and your personal information when you’re online. Internet Explorer 7 also includes many new features designed to help protect you against malware.

Cingular Wireless, LLC


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    via arstechnica.com

    Ever since PayPal burst on to the scene, the Nostradamus types have been predicting one PayPal killer after another. First it was “e-gold,” then Western Union, then C2IT (by Citibank), then Google. None of these players have put a dent in PayPal, and in fact more than a few of them have gone the way of the dodo. Even Google Checkout is having problems these days.

    The space is about to get much more competitive now that Microsoft has announced their plans to build a micropayment service with a twist. The killer feature? The Redmond giant apparently wants to take on Visa and MasterCard, among others.

    Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Bill Gates indicated that Microsoft was looking into finding a way to make so-called micropayments a reality online. And to make it a reality, Gates noted that traditional credit card fees would need to be undercut, and severely. See, the credit industry makes money not only off interest, but they also scoop up 2.75% + $0.35 in fees for most transactions (on average). As you can see, this makes charging for inexpensive items quite unattractive; a $0.25 charge would be instantly doubled on account of fees. For people who have fantasies of selling web content by the page, this is unworkable.

    The question is, how can Microsoft pull this off? The DOW Jones newswire quotes Gates as saying, “If you want to charge somebody $0.10 or $1 a month, that will just be a click… you won’t have to manage some funny thing or pay some big credit charge, where half of it goes to the clearing.”

    Microsoft has two options. First, Microsoft could expand its “Points” system, which earned notoriety with the Xbox Live Marketplace (and was later tapped for the the Zune Marketplace). Such a scheme would see users buying points in bulk and then paying for items with said points. It’s a virtual currency ecosystem of sorts based on a fixed “exchange rate” between real currency and the points system. This is not Microsoft’s only option, of course. Instead of points, Microsoft could simply borrow a page from PayPal and deal in real currency. I’d recommend that the company do the latter, because “points” are not popular with the early-adopter crowd. They obfuscate the real cost of things, and many users have reservations about buying large amounts of “points” that then sit somewhere, unused.

    What will Microsoft do? That remains unclear, although Gates’ comments make it clear that the system will be open to third parties for integration, meaning that retailers and site operators should be able to plug into the payment system via an API—a must-have feature for any payment system. Gates’ plans would also mean that Microsoft’s system will undercut PayPal as well. PayPal charges between 1.9% and 2.9% plus $0.30 on transactions, and thus is unsuitable for micropayments. Microsoft’s cut of any such system would need to be considerably less than that to make micropayments work. The upside to this, of course, is that small transaction fees could also apply to larger purchases, which could eventually see Microsoft encroaching on the turf of existing regular transaction processors, including PayPal and the credit card guys.

    I’m cautiously optimistic for Microsoft’s solution, but when you think back to Passport or even Microsoft Wallet, you know that there are plenty of opportunities for the project to go awry. Still, I can’t help but think that anything that puts pressure on credit card fees is a good thing.

     

    Dell Home Systems


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    via arstechnicaMicrosoft’s quest to closely control the way Windows Vista can be used on PCs has taken a turn for the worse as new information indicates that the company is breaking tradition when it comes to Windows Vista upgrades. With Windows Vista, users will not be able to use upgrade keys to initiate completely new installations. It is a change that will affect few users, but enthusiasts will certainly be amongst those pinched.

    Upgrade versions of Windows Vista Home Basic, Premium, and Starter Edition will not install on any PC unless Windows XP or Windows 2000 is already on the machine in question. In years previous, upgrade versions of Windows could be installed on any PC. If a PC did not have an older version of Windows installed, users could provide an older installation CD of Windows for verification. After dropping a qualifying CD in the CD-ROM drive, the installation routine would verify the disc and you’d be on your way. With this approach, one could use an “upgrade” copy of Windows to lay a new Windows install on a computer.

    One again, Microsoft appears to have made licensing decisions without considering how people actually use their products. Last fall the company trotted out changes to its retail licensing that would have punished users who frequently upgrade their PC hardware had the company not relented. Now Microsoft seeks to complicate our ability to start a crisp, new install with an upgrade version. Why?

    A ‘per device’ obsession

    Microsoft has been adamant in recent years that Windows is licensed per device and not per person. One practical ramification of this viewpoint is that the company typically does not allow users to install one copy of Windows across multiple machines, even if only one machine is in use at a time. According to Microsoft, only the full retail license of Windows Vista can be transferred to new devices (retail pricing here). OEM versions are ostensibly tied to motherboards, and upgrade versions are now technically tied to previous installations.

    What does all of this mean on a practical level? Users who purchase upgrade copies of the aforementioned versions of Vista will find that they can only upgrade PCs that already have Windows installed. KB930985 clearly states: “you cannot use an upgrade key to perform a clean installation of Windows Vista.” According to Microsoft, this happens because Windows Vista does not check for upgrade compliance. If you do not have a previous installation of Windows available, Microsoft recommends that you “purchase a license that lets you perform a clean installation of Windows Vista.”

    For its part, Microsoft seems to be confident that the Vista repair process should be sufficient to solve any problems with the OS, since otherwise the only option for disaster recovery in the absence of backups would be to wipe a machine, install XP, and then upgrade to Vista. This will certainly make disaster recovery a more irritating experience.

    Fortunately, the change will not mean that users cannot install Windows Vista to a new directory. Windows Vista’s upgrade process includes the option of backing up previous installations, and in fact, in some scenarios a “clean” upgrade is required. “Clean” or not, the requirement that the previous OS be installed puts a bit of a damper on those of us that like the do periodic system refreshes.

    What does Microsoft hope to gain out of all of this? I can only speculate. First, the change prevents a dual-license situation with all of the free Vista upgrade coupons out there. If things worked according to the old scheme, people with upgrade coupons would essentially get a “free” OS because they could install the Vista upgrade anywhere, and continue to use the version of Windows XP that came with their computer. Did Microsoft fear that this would happen quite a bit? It seems like an unlikely scenario.

    Second, and likely more important to Microsoft, this should make it difficult for users to use a single upgrade copy of Vista throughout the years. I’m quite sure many of you in readerland have done exactly that in years past: build a computer, use your Windows upgrade disc. Build a new box three years later, use that same upgrade disc. Microsoft’s preference would be for users in such situations to either purchase OEM copies for each new machine, or pay for a full version of the retail product.

    InstantCert.com, LLC


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    Intel, the world’s largest chip maker, has overhauled the basic building block of the information age, paving the way for a new generation of faster and more energy-efficient processors.

     Mark Bohr, an Intel physicist who led the research, holds a 45-nanometer wafer using new metal alloys that led the insulation advance.

    Related Intel 45-Nanometer Transistor Technology (intel.com)

    Company researchers said the advance represented the most significant change in the materials used to manufacture silicon chips since Intel pioneered the modern integrated-circuit transistor more than four decades ago.

    The microprocessor chips, which Intel plans to begin making in the second half of this year, are designed for computers but they could also have applications in consumer devices. Their combination of processing power and energy efficiency could make it possible, for example, for cellphones to play video at length — a demanding digital task — with less battery drain.

    The work by Intel overcomes a potentially crippling technical obstacle that has arisen as a transistor’s tiny switches are made ever smaller: their tendency to leak current as the insulating material gets thinner. The Intel advance uses new metallic alloys in the insulation itself and in adjacent components.

    Word of the announcement, which is planned for Monday, touched off a war of dueling statements as I.B.M. rushed to announce that it was on the verge of a similar advance.

    I.B.M. executives said their company was planning to introduce a comparable type of transistor in the first quarter of 2008.

    Many industry analysts say that Intel retains a six-month to nine-month lead over the rest of the industry, but I.B.M. executives disputed the claim and said the two companies were focused on different markets in the computing industry.

    The I.B.M. technology has been developed in partnership with Advanced Micro Devices, Intel’s main rival. Modern microprocessor and memory chips are created from an interconnected fabric of hundreds of millions and even billions of the tiny switches that process the ones and zeros that are the foundation of digital computing.

    They are made using a manufacturing process that has been constantly improving for more than four decades. Today transistors, for example, are made with systems that can create wires and other features that are finer than the resolving power of a single wavelength of light.

    The Intel announcement is new evidence that the chip maker is maintaining the pace of Moore’s Law, the technology axiom that states that the number of transistors on a chip doubles roughly every two years, giving rise to a constant escalation of computing power at lower costs.

    “This is evolutionary as opposed to revolutionary, but it will generate a big sigh of relief,” said Vivek Subramanian, associate professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences at the University of California, Berkeley.

    Read the rest of the story at The New York Times (Free Registration Required)


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    What Content Will Be Crippled When Output in Vista?

    There are tons of people out there not understanding all of this “Vista DRM”, mainly because of less than accurate media reporting.  That’s completely understandable, but lets run down a quick list here of some of the popular content out there.

    DVD Rip (DivX, XivD, etc) downloaded from Bit Torrent/IRC/etc:  Output at whatever resolution you want.  No restrictions.  Works the same as Windows XP. Don’t pirate stuff!

    DVD Rip (VIDEO_TS, ISO) download from Bit Torrent/IRC/etc:  Output at whatever resolution you want.  No restrictions. Works the same as Windows XP.  Don’t pirate stuff!

    WMV HD Downloads (MariposaHD, etc): Output at whatever resolution you want. No restrictions. Works the same as Windows XP.

    Apple/Quicktime HD Downloads: Output at whatever resolution you want.  No restrictions.  Works the same as Windows XP.

    Videocasts/blogcasts/Internet TV/IPTV: Output at whatever resolution you want.  No restrictions.  Works the same as Windows XP.

    DVR-MS (SD) Recordings: Output at whatever resolution you want.  You can still edit recordings, convert recordings, etc unless they are CGMS-A protected. Works the same as Windows XP.

    DVR-MS (HD) Recordings: Output at whatever resolution you want.  You can still edit recordings, convert recordings, etc. Works the same as Windows XP.

    MPEG-2/DivX/etc Recordings from 3rd Party PVRs: Output at whatever resolution you want.  You can still edit recordings, convert recordings, etc. Works the same as Windows XP.

    CableCARD: Content recorded from CableCARDs will follow the same sort of output regulations as HD DVD and Blu-ray.  Not available in Windows XP.

    DVD: Output at whatever resolution you want.  If using Component, output is limited because of Macrovision.  Use AnyDVD or like to output at whatever you want.  Works the same as Windows XP.

    HD DVD: If is ICT* set; output at 540p if you are not using HDCP.  If using a digital connection (DVI, HDMI) with HDCP, output will be whatever you want always (ICT set or not).  If ICT is not set, you can output at 1080p with VGA and 1080i with Component.  Works the same as Windows XP.** CE (consumer electronics) HD DVD players (regular set-top boxes) must follow the same rules, not specific to Microsoft or Windows.

    Blu-ray Disc (BD): If is ICT* set; output at 540p if you are not using HDCP.  If using a digital connection (DVI, HDMI) with HDCP, output will be whatever you want always (ICT set or not).  If ICT is not set, you can output at 1080p with VGA and 1080i with Component.  Works the same as Windows XP.**  CE (consumer electronics) BD players (regular set-top boxes) must follow the same rules, not specific to Microsoft or Windows.

    Additions:

    DVD Ripping:  No restrictions.  Works the same as Windows XP

    Tools like BackupHDDVD/BackupBluray:  No restrictions.  Works the same as Windows XP***

    *AACS requires titles with ICT set be marked, so check the package before you purchase the movie.  Currently, no titles have ICT set.

    ** The content protection framework in Vista will also allow for a more traditional DirectShow filter model of playback.  Right now, playback is limited to within PowerDVD or WinDVD. 

    ***Though, I have not tested them under Vista, there is nothing to stop or prevent them from specifically working.

    via Chris Lanier’s Blog


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  • 15 Reasons to adopt Windows Vista


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    Windows Vista is almost here. To anyone who has been sitting on the fence over whether to upgrade to Microsoft’s new operating system, I’ll say it loud and clear: It’s time to make the jump. There are plenty of reasons to leave Windows XP and install Vista, and below are my top 15 favorites.

    Not everyone agrees with me, however. For the opposing point of view, check out PCW columnist Steve Bass’s take in “Are You Sure About Upgrading to Vista?” and “Vista Upgrade: The Not-So-Rosy Picture.”

    To make up your own mind, read our Windows Vista FAQ. We also have our Vista review and our article on how to install Vista to assist you.

    But I’m sold on upgrading to Vista. Why? Well…

    1. It’s the Interface, Stupid

    Perhaps the best thing about Windows Vista is the most obvious: its new interface. With transparent animated windows that swoosh into place, subtle and elegant colors, a new Start menu, and plenty of other changes, this is the most beautiful version of Windows you’ve seen. If you’ve ever had Mac envy, this is the Windows you want–it’s the most Mac-like interface yet.

    2. Flip Over Windows Flip 3D

    Click to view full-size image.

    Switching between open windows using Alt-Tab in previous versions of Windows was always a shot in the dark, as you never quite knew to which window you’d switch, or even which ones were open. That has all changed in Windows Vista. Press Alt-Tab, and Windows Flip 3D springs into action, displaying thumbnails of all your open windows in a gorgeous, 3D stack. You can then flip through them until you find the one you want.

    3. Live Thumbnails

    Do you run a lot of programs and visit a lot of Web sites simultaneously? If so, you’ll appreciate Live Thumbnails. Hover your mouse over any window on the Taskbar, and a thumbnail of the window pops up, with the program and document name, or the Web site name, just above it. The thumbnails are truly “live,” so if a video is playing in a window, you’ll see the video playing in the thumbnail too.

    4. Boost Performance With ReadyBoost

    Windows Vista includes a quick way to enhance system performance: ReadyBoost. It preloads files and programs you often use into RAM so that they’re there when you want them, and you don’t have to wait for them to load from the hard disk. You can buy an inexpensive USB flash drive and use up to 4GB of cheap RAM to boost your system performance.

    5. Cool Performance Tools

    If you’re the kind of person who tends to peek under the hood and tinker, you’ll find a lot to like in Windows Vista, which contains plenty of applets and utilities. Probably the best of them all is the Reliability and Performance Monitor. It keeps tabs on every aspect of your PC in exquisite detail, including the CPU, hard disk, network usage, and RAM use, and it includes plenty of charts, reports, and logs for your inner geek. The Reliability Monitor module is particularly noteworthy, as it charts the reliability of your PC over time and shows you every single problem or failure in a calendar format.

    6. Better Security

    Click to view full-size image.

    At every level of Windows Vista, you’ll find improved security. The firewall is now two-way, including inbound as well as outbound protection. Windows Defender offers spyware protection, and Internet Explorer has an antiphishing filter to protect against Web scams. A slew of security holes have been plugged in Internet Explorer, and the browser now operates in what’s called Protected Mode, which guards system files against external attacks. There’s plenty more under the hood as well, including Windows Service Hardening, which protects vital files and settings. (Note: BitLocker’s automatic drive encryption and other advanced Vista security options are available only in the Business and Ultimate versions.)

    7. Find Anything Fast With Search

    Can’t remember where you put an important file? It’s no longer a problem. Windows Vista integrates a new search technology throughout the operating system–on the Start menu, within Windows Explorer, and just about everywhere else you look. It uses indexing and is lightning fast, and it literally searches as you type. A powerful advanced search tool lets you narrow your search by date, file size, author, tags, and location. It also accepts Boolean searching. You can even save your searches for future reference.

    8. Nifty Software Gadgets

    Click to view full-size image.

    If you’re a software gadget fan, you’ll love Vista. It includes a variety of software gadgets that live on the desktop and do little tasks such as delivering stock quotes, showing weather forecasts, displaying RSS feeds, monitoring the state of your computer, checking your e-mail inbox, and more. Vista ships with a gaggle of them, but you can find dozens more online–and they’re all free.

    9. Better Wireless Networking

    Anyone who uses a wireless network at home, at work, or on the road will appreciate the way Windows Vista handles wireless networking. You can more easily find new wireless networks, and save them and manage them as permanent connections. Wireless security has also been improved: When you connect at a public hotspot, security precautions (such as the shutting off of file sharing) automatically lock into place.

    10. Map Your Network

    Click to view full-size image.

    Want to see every single computer and device connected to your network–and get instant information about each, such as their IP addresses? The Network Map does that for you. It also lets you make instant connections to any device; double-click a PC, for example, and you’ll connect to its shared folders.

    11. Better Graphics With Windows Photo Gallery

    Click to view full-size image.

    Finally, with Windows Photo Gallery Microsoft has shipped a graphics utility that’s worth using. It’s a kind of jack-of-all-trades–you can view graphics and create slide shows, for example. But it also includes a surprisingly good set of simple-to-use image editing tools, including one for eliminating red-eye and another that cleans up photos with a single click.

    12. Become a Director With Windows Movie Maker

    Windows Vista comes with a new version of the much-maligned moviemaking tool Windows Movie Maker, and it’s a big surprise–you’ll actually want to use it. Importing video and music, creating transitions between scenes, and syncing music with video are easy. When you’re done, you can burn your creation to DVD with Windows DVD Maker.

    13. Better Notebook Support

    Click to view full-size image.

    In previous versions of Windows, the mobile-computing features seemed bolted on after the fact. That’s not true with Windows Vista, as the Windows Mobility Center puts all the tools you need in one place.

    You can turn your wireless adapter on or off, change your battery settings, and connect to an external display from a single location. And the new Presentation Settings feature is a big leap forward for anyone who often gives presentations with a notebook. You can customize settings–such as the resolution, mute, background, and so on–and then save them. Afterward you can switch from normal mode to presentation mode in a snap.

    14. File Sharing and Syncing

    With Windows XP it was possible to share files among PCs on your network–possible but often impossibly hard, it seemed. That changes with Windows Vista. The Network and Sharing Center lets you turn on and configure file sharing with single clicks. And the Synch Center lets you automatically synchronize files and folders among separate PCs. You won’t have to do anything to keep them in sync; Windows Vista will do it for you.

    15. Protect Your Kids With Parental Controls

    Worried that your children may be exposed to inappropriate content online? Want to make sure they’re not playing violent games? Parental Controls put you in the driver seat. Not only can you determine the kinds of sites they visit and games they play, but you can also enforce rules about when they’ll be able to use the computer at all.

    Vista goes on sale Tuesday, January 30; tech superstores across the United States will open at midnight to let you get a jump.

    via PC World

     ORDER WINDOWS VISTA FROM AMAZON.COM Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate UPGRADE [DVD]


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  • Happy New Year


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    May you have a blessed and joyous 2007.


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  • Music Education


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    We have developed a site devoted to Music Education.

    Go to music.technoreality.com and check it out.


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  • Happy Holidays


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    Merry Christmas

    Happy Festivus

    Feliz Navidad

    However you say it… All the best to you and yours from me and mine…


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