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The irony on a BlackBerry outage

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 12-Feb-2008 19:03

Apparently another BlackBerry outage affected North American customers again. The irony is the ad placed in the page where the outage was being reported:

Joining the Hire Things Advisory Board

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 12-Feb-2008 12:17

Just as a disclosure, I was invited - and accepted it - to join the Advisory Board of Hire Things. This is coming after years of watching a friend, Peter Torr Smith, creating the company and the service from the ground up, from concept to delivery.

The company wants to grow bigger and stronger, and for that they invited three people so far to be part of this board, with one or two other seats to be filled soon.

As an Advisory Board member I am not an employee, neither have authority within the company. The role is just what the name says - a panel of experts that advise the company management with their knowledge in different sectors.

It is a part time position with probably one or two meetings every month, but it's going to be great to be more involved in this business - an on-line business.

Microsoft Windows Vista Service Pack 1: available now

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 12-Feb-2008 05:00

Microsoft has slightly changed its plans on how Windows Vista SP1 will reach users. Instead of a "March release", the company has decided to rethink the way users will have access to this release, so here is the new timetable:

- Beta testers: NOW!
- Volume license: English release now, other languages to follow
- MSDN and TechNet subscribers: sometime mid February
- Download center and Windows Update: sometime from mid March

To start with, if you are planning installing this update, then you should read the list of Hotfixes and Updates in Windows Vista Service Pack 1.

I have downloaded and installed Windows Vista SP1 from Connect (I was involved in the original beta testing).

It wasn't without bumps though.

First I tried the Windows Update method, which requires a special installer downloaded from Connect. It didn't quite like my laptop and wouldn't install. Initially I thought it could be something related to drivers.

As you may know, Microsoft will perform a slow release because some device drivers, the little programs that control your peripherals, aren't working that well with this version. The idea of this slow release to end users is to make sure all PCs are updated with new drivers and then have SP1 installed automatically.

But I knew this shouldn't be a problem on my laptop, which is a "Windows Vista Premium Ready" Acer machine.

So I tried the standalone installer. The update was uneventful - start it and forget it. I did not have to do anythinng and after a couple of reboots the system was updated.

I immediately completed a manual backup to my Windows Home Server, and also created a new restore point "After SP1".

Windows Vista SP1 RTM is available on Connect for download in two flavours - standalone installer and ISO images. These are the files details:

- Windows6.0-KB936330-X86-wave0.exe (434.50 MB)
- Windows6.0-KB936330-X64-wave0.exe  (726.5 MB)
- 6001.18000.080118-1840_iso_client_sp_wave0-FRMCSP0_DVD.iso (1,161.72 MB)

Although I had Windows Vista SP1 RC1 installed on this laptop on a previous build, I am still testing the SP1 RTM. So far so good and I am enjoying this "refresh".

I can confirm then it works fine on an Acer Ferrari 5000 laptop and also on my Apple Mac mini-based Media Center (booting Windows Vista through Bootcamp).

Now to check the odd stuff that wasn't quite right before.

Attending the 2008 Summer Road Trip - Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, Visual Studio 2008

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 11-Feb-2008 20:11

Cool, it is time for the Wellington IT professional crowd to get into the "2008 Summer Roadtrip".

This tour is coming to Wellington this 13 February, at the Paramount Cinema and will bring the latest information on Microsoft's new IT Pro software - includingWindows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008 and Visual Studio 2008.

Chris Auld and Jeremy Boyd, and Darryl Burling are touring the country (yes, driving all the way) showing off all the stuff in Windows Server (Virtualisation, IIS, etc), SQL Server (File Stream, Spatial data types & queries, etc) and Visual Studio (LINQ, CSS designers, etc). 

In each location they will be joined by a local speaker.

When you register you enter the draw to win one of two server hardware, Windows Home Server software and more. And you get another entry in the draw if you invite a friend.

These are the remaining dates (click for more information on each event):

  • Wellington – Feb 13
  • Nelson – Feb 14
  • Christchurch – Feb 15
  • Dunedin – Feb 18
  • Invercargill - Feb 19

    I am attending the Wellington meeting this week. I hear about 400 people are registered - so make an effort to show up - look for me there!

  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 Windows Mobile pictures and video

    By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 11-Feb-2008 09:55

    Sony Ericsson has announced the XPERIA X1 Windows Mobile-based devices. Interesting news, since the company is a long time supporter of Symbian UIQ.

    Very exciting news too because we all know how popular the Sony Ericsson handsets are and how well made they are.

    The XPERIA X1 comes with GPRS/EDGE/UMTS/HSDPA/HSUPA - and look at this user interface (video from Sony Ericsson, uploaded by Engadget):

    Below are some pictures of this new device:

    Windows Vista SP1 RC2 = RTM bits

    By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 8-Feb-2008 09:21

    If you are planning the deployment of Windows Vista Service Pack 1 in your organisation or at home, here is a tip I got from a conference call with the Windows Vista team in Redmond: the last Windows Vista SP1 RC2 (build 1800) released to beta testers contains the same bits as the Windows Vista SP1 RTM announced a couple of days ago.

    It means that for all of you out there planning compatibility tests, migration, etc you can safely use the RC2 as a base platform for testing.

    Ojo videophone: can you see me now?

    By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 7-Feb-2008 16:41

    If you are one of the people who bought an Ojo videophone from Telecom New Zealand (announced down here back in November 2006) then start worrying.

    It seems Worldgate is in the path to bankruptcy:

    Accordingly, on January 30, 2008, the Company shut down its operations as a first step to winding down its business, which will occur if the Company is not able to secure payment of the monies believed to be owed and/or new financing. The Company continues to explore potential financing opportunities and is also pursuing legal recourse against the customer. Thus, bankruptcy may be coming shortly, which would be another black eye for the VoIP industry...

    And just minutes ago I read on Engadget that the service has gone dark.

    Is anyone here in New Zealand still using the Ojo through Telecom New Zealand?

    Finding Chuck Norris

    By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 7-Feb-2008 16:29

    I just got this on an e-mail, worth trying:

    1. Open Google

    2. Type "find chuck norris"

    3.Click on "I'm feeling lucky"


    You should follow Polar Bear Farm

    By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 7-Feb-2008 13:07

    During the Kiwi Foo Camp 2008 I had a chance to meet Layton Duncan. He's quite active on Geekzone, mainly in the Mac OS X Mobile forum, helping others with their iPhone and iPod touch questions and comments.

    He is also involved with Polar Bear Farm and I think you should follow the company.

    Why you should follow Polar Bear Farm? Because it's a New Zealand company creating application software for the Apple iPhone and iPod touch.

    They are the guys behind the PBF Search and PBF ShowTime - this one brings video recording to the Apple iPhone.

    I just wanted the guys added more posts to their blog - I know they were shoing off their stuff during the MacWorld but it would b good to hear more of their experience of going to that big show.

    Opera 9.5 demo video

    By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 6-Feb-2008 09:16

    Opera Software has announced Opera 9.5, its new web browser version for smartphones. The software is not available yet, but it will be hosted at Opera Mobile sometime after the Mobile World Congress 2008.

    In the meantime, there's a demo video available and shared below.

    I am looking forward to having this installed on my Windows Mobile device.

    Is just me or does it show all the features Internet Explorer Mobile should have had for the last few years already?

    freitasm's profile

    Mauricio Freitas
    New Zealand

    I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

    I'm the Geekzone admin. On Geekzone we publish news, reviews and articles on technology topics. The site also has some busy forums.

    Subscribe now to my blog RSS feed or the Geekzone RSS feed.

    If you want to contact me, please use this page or email me Note this email is not for technical support. I don't give technical support. You can use our Geekzone Forums for community discussions on technical issues.

    Here's is my full disclosure post.

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