TelstraClear exceeded its record this time. Last night during the Geekzone Weekly Chat we had a TesltraClear person between us. A shame he left minutes before my connection died at 8:46pm. Since then I have to thank Vodafone NZ for its service in the area I live.
I called the TelstraClear help desk and was greeted with a message saying something about a power outage causing Internet and cable TV outages in Kapiti, and thought this could be related.
However it's now 6:15am and the service is not back yet.
I am preparing myself to call TelstraClear and endure the 45 minutes wait, their endless requests to power cycle the cable modem (I've done this already multiple times without success) and at the end something like "We will have to send a technician".
If it is something like previous small outages, the service will be restored like magic and I will have to call again, wait 45 minutes and cancel the visit.
But it's not only me. There are other people reporting the same in this area.
Is this going to be the longest TelstraClear outage in Wellington in 2006? We still have another 6 weeks to go you know?
UPDATE: This connection came back between 7am and 8am - about 11 hours outage.
UPDATE: I have posted an update on an on-going discussion in our Geekzone Forums.
I am talking about the CDMA EV-DO versus WCDMA debate. While GSM (and its evolutionary path GPRS, EDGE, WCDMA (a.k.a UMTS), HSDPA) is the dominant mobile technology in Europe, other regions see a balance of forces between GSM and CDMA technologies (here represented by CDMA 1xRTT, 1xEV-DO Rev 0, 1xEV-DO Rev A).
In New Zealand for example, the situation is almost a 50/50 split in number of users of each of those two technologies, although in terms of 3G coverage CDMA (Telecom New Zealand) has a bit more than GSM (Vodafone New Zealand).
I just finished reading a guest post by Chetan Sharma, on Om Malik's blog about EV-DO vs WCDMA in the U.S. and here is an interesting bit:
In terms of network coverage, even though Cingular (then AT&T Wireless) got a head start with its ceremonial UMTS deployment in four markets, Verizon and Sprint Nextel have jumped much further ahead in terms of national coverage. While Cingular has only covered 52 major markets in 28 states (just over 50% market) thus far, both Verizon and Sprint are nearing complete nation-wide coverage. T-Mobile won’t get into the picture until well into 2007. Alltel, the number 5 carrier in the US has been spreading its EV-DO coverage as well.
In the critical area of handsets, EV-DO is ahead by a mile. As of Sept 2006, there were 15 3G handsets available in the market (representing approximately 20% of the available handsets from big four), Fourteen of those handsets were for EV-DO (10 from Verizon, 4 from Sprint Nextel) vs. five UMTS/HSDPA 6handsets from Cingular.
Wow... How different from down under. Here in good old New Zealand is the opposite in terms of handsets. Everyone I know (or post in our Geekzone forums), complain that Telecom New Zealand's handsets are not "sexy" enough to attract the youger crowd, and not interesting enough to attract the older people.
By the way, a current joke on Geekzone is about a MSM journalist who wrote an article about Telecom New Zealand (a CDMA operator) planning to migrate to "Wireless CDMA" (his version of WCDMA). As if there would be any other type of CDMA...
Installation was a breeze and it took less than 20 minutes. Great stuff. Unfortunatelly upgrade from Windows Vista RC2 wasn't an option available. Meno male, since I am not a big fan of inplace upgrades, and I consider this not a beta version anymore so I wasn't going to test this scenario.
My desktop configuration is based on an ASUS P5WD2 Premium motherboard, currently with 2GB DDR2 RAM and a 160GB SATA HDD. I wasn't running the latest BIOS on this machine, but Windows Vista RC1 and Windows Vista RC2 were both running ok - but how wrong I was...
After installing Windows Vista RTM my fist boot resulted on a BSDO. Upon a Safe Boot I found it was on crcdisk.sys. A quick check on Google showed this is a problem on 64 bit CPUs - hardly my case. Off to fresh install the OS again.
It worked fine for a while, but continuously locking up for up to 3 minutes, unresponsive, but suddenly coming back to live.
Anyway, the system had no sound (it uses Realtek HD Sound) and I visited Windows Update to try and find the driver. No luck there. I ended up manually downloading the official Realtek driver. I wonder where are the 19,500+ drivers on the DVD?
Soon after installing the sound driver the system rebooted itself, and guess what? A big nice BSOD on loading crcdisk.sys... After quickly talking to Brad Stewart we decided I should give the System Recover tool from the boot DVD a shot. It worked its magic, finding a few errors in the registry.
I proceeded to install Microsoft 2007 Office System RTM, which worked ok. But Microsoft Outlook 2007 was freezing and complaining about its .OST file...
At this point I decided to find if there was a BIOS update for this motherboard. Indeed there is a BIOS update, although not one aimed at Windows Vista. After trying many times (the ASUS website is horrible) I managed to download the file, create a bootable FDD and install this BIOS.
It seems now this is working fine. The BSOD doesn't happen anymore, I am copying my files back from the external backup drive, and Outlook is no longer complaining.
There are some new problems though... I can't start System Restore to manually create a restore point. It complains with an error dialog "There was an unexpected error: Class not registered (0x80040154). Please close System Restore and try again."... Frustrating, and I can't find a solution. The closest I found is here, and is just a query. Still no solution for this.
Next is the existence of four or five "white" icons in the Control Panel, with no caption, and not doing anything when double-clicked. Strange.
Then there are a couple of "unknown devices" in the Hardware Manager. They were not "unknown" to Windows Vista RC2.
And my SD card reader, which used to work as a ReadyBoost device with Windows Vista RC2, is no longer a "ReadyBoost" capable device with RTM. Drats.
Why, would you ask, you simply don't reinstall Windows Vista RTM now that your BIOS is up-to-date and things seem to be running ok?
Because Microsoft made a mistake with keys for Microsoft Office 2007 on MSDN and after two registrations only (my tablet PC and this desktop) the keys are no longer valid! As soon (and if) they fix this I will reinstall this Windows Vista desktop and will be able to install Office again. Until then, I am stuck.
How hard is for a company to understand that I don't need another download manager, and that I don't want another download manager?
I don't want software being installed on my computer just so that I have the ability to download another piece of software?
Is there are anything more intrusive than this, short of being an unwanted spyware or adware software?
You choose which version you want, and a key will be generated for you in a week. Also this is a download offer only.
Lucky beta tester, got the gift on the same dat Windows Vista RTM landed on MSDN and Technet.
I've already downloaded the Windows Vista ISO, in just over a couple of hours. I wonder with the news spreading fast how long before all the servers are loaded and the entire Internet slows down...
The file en_windows_vista_x86_dvd_X12-34293.iso is an ISO-9660 DVD Image, with a total of 2555 MB.
This single download includes the following Windows Vista editions:
Windows Vista Business Windows Vista Business N Windows Vista Home Basic Windows Vista Home Basic N Windows Vista Home Premium Windows Vista Starter Windows Vista Ultimate
In that article I explained what new features are coming to Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, and how those features will interact with Windows Mobile devices, and other devices running the licensed Exchange ActiveSync client platform.
If you want even more information on this, you should head to Paul Mah's Technology At Play, and read the post Examining Exchange 2007: The Future of Direct Push.
Now that Microsoft have finally announced that Exchange 2007 is being slated for release at the end of November 2006, it is a good time as any for us to perform a detailed appraisal of the Direct Push-related components in this new version of Microsoft Exchange.
Perhaps you have already heard or even read-up on it. But in case you are not aware yet, Exchange 2007 is a radically different beast altogether from Exchange 2003. Rather than being a purely evolutionary upgrade, this latest version of Exchange is set to bring several features never before found in the e-mail server scene – such as built-in voice (Think in terms of voice PABX) and fax capabilities, onto the playing field.
They are working hard on the site, with versions in French, German, Spanish, Chinese - and have just annoucned an UberGizmo mobile version of the site, working on all sorts of mobile devices, including Windows Mobile Pocket PC, Palm, Symbian S60 and PSP.
I've done a couple of early testing for them on my Pocket PCs to see how the site worked, titles, etc. Worth checking it out at ubergizmo.mobi.
I'm not sure how this is going to work yet, but if it's anything like the U.S. version don't feel bad if you don't get an invitation this time around. According to the Foo organisers over there, each year they invite a different mix of people they know, people they'd like to know, and other crazy stuff.
Having said that, I am looking for someone willing to share accomodation - I've booked into the Walton Park Motor Lodge and the rooms seem to accomodate two, so if you are keen, contact me (after you have received your invitation and confirmed presence).