The Microsoft Windows Vista RTM Lab is a two days event, with some public and some NDA material, on the state of Microsoft Windows Vista, ahead of its public availability on 31 January 2007. Microsoft Featured Communities websites were invited to attend the event which will be held on the two days before the CES.
The Featured Communities websites are those who are linked from Microsoft's main site, from a variety of pages, engagin with end users. Geekzone is currently linked from the MSDN and the main Windows Mobile Communities page. You will find lots of resources on these community sites.
The event includes a group reception (ok, a party) on Saturday evening, and culminating with our attendance to Bill Gates keynote at the CES.
I have lots of meetings to attend during the CES, and some exciting products to see. I also have plans to be present at some parallel events such as Lunch at Piero's and ShowStoppers, plus a couple of receptions (ok, parties) put on by HP, Dell and the good folks at the Blog Business Summit.
Unfortunatelly I have to say "no" to requests to meet people at Pepcom Digital Experience. Even though I participated in last year's Digital Experience, this time they looked at my old business card from two years ago (from their files) and shrieked on the sight of a "Consultant" there... Oh well, their rules and we play by them.
Full disclosure: my trip is being sponsored by Microsoft as part of the Feature Communities programme seeing I am participating in the Windows Vista RTM Lab.
I am still looking for a sponsor for my 3G access while on the CES show floor - otherwise I won't be able to post on the spot because my data roaming bill would be astronomically high, thanks to Vodafone NZ's $30/MB rates.
We have received comments from TelstraClear pointing to a high contention rate, but also indicating this is known and being worked - mainly the replacement of some hardware to provide a lower number of users per point.
Just today I got this e-mail from TelstraClear:
Over the past year we have had staggering growth in broadband customer numbers on our Wellington InHome network. The rate of growth has exceeded even our most optimistic views of how popular our High Speed Internet services would become.
As a result of this growth, some Wellington and Kapiti customers on our 10 Mbps plans are receiving speeds that are lower than what we believe is acceptable.
We are working to implement new equipment that will address this issue, but this will not be resolved for all customers until late February.
To make up for this, we will automatically credit your account with $20 each month until the new equipment is installed. Until then you'll still get the same amount of traffic and your email won't be affected.
Thank you for your understanding - and thanks again for being a TelstraClear customer.
All the best for the holiday season.
The team at TelstraClear
As Juha suggested in the ongoing discussion, TelstraClear "gets the inaugural Geekzone Award for Best Public Relations Move".
No, nothing wrong with Windows Vista before. I have never activated my previous installation and it would be running out this weekend, so I had to do it. I didn't activate Windows Vista before because I found lots of memory conflicts while running Windows Vista on my desktop, which were solved when I upgraded the machine's BIOS to the latest version, but I thought it would be better to have a fresh install after the BIOS upgrade.
I was delaying this reinstall because I am waiting for a new laptop to arrive from Microsoft, an Acer Ferrari 5000, ready to use and review with pre-installed Windows Vista. Alas, the laptop won't turn up here until a week from now, so I had to go through reinstalling everything.
I am glad I did because now Microsoft Hardware has some new drivers for Intellimouse and Intellipoint, as well as for its Fingerprint Reader. Realtek has also final drives for its HD Audio hardware, and NVIDIA has drivers for the Windows Vista RTM build. I am still waiting for imation to release an updated version of their software for the Disc Stakka though (in the meantime I am using it on my tablet PC).
There are only two things that weren't solved with this fresh install:
- Internet Explorer won't accept the trusted root certificate used on my internal server (Exchange, Newsgator), saying it's been revoked. No it hasn't, and it works fine on Firefox 2.0 and Internet Explorer 7.0 for Windows XP;
- The built-in SD card reader, which worked as ReadyBoost on Windows Vista RC2 100% of the time, and worked as ReadyBoost on Windows Vista RTM for a while, stopped working. After the reinstall it was recognised as a ReadyBoost device for a while, and again it stopped working. Why, oh why?
I can't log these as bugs anymore because the Windows Vista beta program is finished. The suggestion is to record any problems with standard Microsoft support. I will post here instead. Let's see if they read.
Sink your teeth into the luxury and innovation of the Chocolate by LG – now available in black, white, red, and green. With its minimalist-inspired style and silky-smooth slide design, the Chocolate offers a rich array of features that include V CAST Music, a glowing, touch-sensitive keypad, superlative music/video player, luxurious 1.3 megapixel camera/camcorder, Bluetooth capabilities, and a microSD memory port for extra storage. Chocolate. LG’s newest mobile treat.
It's not a simple Digital Photo Frame, but a complete media player. The GTA-316 actually accepts SD/MMC cards, and it can playback asf, mp4, wma, mp3, wav files and jpeg images. The display is a 3.6" LCD TFT with 960 x 240 pixels.
It comes with a USB cable and power adapter.
Last year's gift from Google was a travel pack with USB memory key, USB Hub, USB light and Skype/GTalk headset. The year before it was the mood radio (changing colours depending on music).
The presentation "How Can you Deliver Mobile E-mail to over 40,000 Users with Exchange 2003 and Windows Mobile Devices?" was delivered by Jason Langridge during the IT Forum in Barcelona in November 2006.
The recorded session is now available on-line here, and according to Jason's own words:
The session focusses on both the technical, operational and commercial challenges you may face in deploying large volumes of Windows Mobile devices.
It also covers some of Microsoft's own experiences as the #1 Mobile Messaging user worldwide with around 46,000 users now connecting a Windows Mobile device!
Ivan is blogging (and sent me an IM) on such a scam mail he received on his mailbox today. The paper came from a company "based" in New York, and they asked him to pay US$966 for a domain already registered on his name - and not registered with the scammers of course.
This mail came from Prague, but in the last couple of years New Zealand companies received similar letters from an Australian business trying to do the same.
Many companies fall for this scam because the accounts departments have no clue on how domain registration works, and simply pay the paper - which is not an official document at all!
Make sure your accounts department check with IT before paying any invoices related to domains, e-mail or Internet services. Let them know about this scam.
I started then to look for some more stuff about their site and found that trademe's Rowan Simpson was a featured guest in one of ARCast episodes, on Microsoft's Channel 9. The show recording is from late September 2006.
I am just listening to it now, and after the usual introductions "Who are you", "Wow, New Zealand is cool", they go into the main talk of the show, in this case their migration to ASP .Net.
I am interested on their experience because this kind of migration is something we will be working on sometime soon here at Geekzone.
UPDATE: Added correct link.
Telecom New Zealand launches Sierra Wireless AirCard® 595 PC card
Latest Sierra Wireless PC card modem supports deployment of EV-DO Revision A network, offering mobile data customers faster file uploads on the go
The specifications for this Sierra Wireless AirCard 595:
Faster wireless data speeds up to 1.8 Mbps upload and 3.1 Mbps on the download
Full CDMA technology support for CDMA EV-DO Rev A, EV-DO Rev 0 and CDMA 1x
New fixed design high performance antenna for highest speeds, extended coverage and reliability
Supported OS: Windows® Vista, XP, 2000, Mac OS X (coming end of Q4)
Interface: 32-Bit CardBus with NDIS & DUN support, NDIS provides ease of use and improved battery life
Although the RSS feed shows the headline, the press release is not on-line yet. So there you go, we have a scoop... Telecom New Zealand is planning to "turn the key" on its CDMA EV-DO Rev A service from 12 December 2006 and this card is in the lineup.
Bummer. Telecom New Zealand is undergoing some changes, people are moving positions, and I can't get things out them now. I couldn't get my hands on a Treo 700wx for review, did not get replies to other queries, and I had no access to any of their new CDMA EV-DO Rev A tests.
Completely the opposite of Vodafone New Zealand's current position and their relationship with us here at Geekzone. Interesting how things change in six months: sometime ago I was complaining the other way around.
- AMD Turion 64 X2 (dual-core 64-bit) running at 2GHz, with 512KB L2 cache per core;
- 2GB RAM 667MHz DDR 2 memory configured in dual-channel mode;
- ATI Mobility Radeon X1600 graphics processor with 256MB;
- 15.4" WSXGA or WXGA, 16 ms, widescreen;
- 160GB SATA HDD;
- HD-DVD R/W;
- Bluetooth 2.0;
- carbon fiber casing;
- 802.11 a/b/g wireless LAN;
- 5-in-1 media card reader built-in;
- 1.3 megapixel digital camera built-in.
Review at the The Register.
This laptop will arrive with Windows Vista installed and ready to use, courtesy of AMD and Microsoft. I plan to replace my P4 HT 3GHz desktop and Toshiba M200 Tablet PC with this machine.
I will post about it later, when it gets here. Just before Xmas...
UPDATE: for people coming from Digg and Slashdot, read this...