The New Look Tech Blog

Browsing Posts in Windows

Operating Systems ComparedI love operating systems. They are the most wonderful pieces of software that has ever been put together. What you use daily interfaces with your hardware. Every button press causes the OS to send a message to the hardware, and then to read the response from the hardware to provide you with the correct feedback.

Most Operating systems are very good these days. A modern OS can do most of the things its direct competitor does, some do certain things better than others, and some are very specified in their use.

Where the largest focus is today, is the Desktop Computer. Primary focus for the Desktop Computer should be ease of use, or so you’d hope. I take five Operating Systems and compare them using six tasks that most users will need to do at least once a week. Here is how they did.

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Ramblings From the KeyboardToday I spent some time visiting with some clients, and one in particular stands out. They are a small shop, eight computers in total (running Windows XP), and a server (Running Windows 2000). Spending an hour and a half with them I realized that 90% of their issues could be solved if I replaced their desktops with Ubuntu. And then I realized that Ubuntu and other Open Source applications would be a great solution for small business. Heres why.

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Going Closed Source Day 7


If you have not followed this series from day one start here: DAY ONE 

Right. I have reached a tipping point in this series.

Honestly my experience with Windows 7 has not been all that bad. Has it been good enough to lure me away from Linux and open source? I honestly don’t know at this point. There was a few times that I wanted to throw in the towel and go back to my Linux install. Right now I am willing to wait and see what Karmic Koala will offer before I switch.

Switch I will, but not because I feel that I NEED to, but because I can.

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Going Closed Source Day 6


If you have not followed this series from day one start here: DAY ONE 


Start my day with my usual tasks, yesterday putty started using my key for ssh, this morning it won’t. And Windows now takes two minutes before I can launch any programs…

I have decided that desktop widgets, plasmoids, gadgets (as windows refers to them) or even conky is useless as a means for getting information about your system, being notified of e-mails or keeping up to date with the latest rss feeds.

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Going Closed Source Day 5

If you have not followed this series from day one start here: DAY ONE 

A reader pointed me in the direction of Microsoft Security Essentials as an alternative to Bitdefender. Unfortunately it is not available in my country. So for now BD it is.

I am looking forward to today, I have just finished breakfast and am getting ready to go to work. Now that I have sorted out most of my needs for today, with the exception of finding a closed-source alternative to Putty, I am wondering how my day will go using the tools I have chosen to make a living.

Off to work…

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If (Windows Lockup due to Antivirus scan – more on that later) you have not followed this series from day one start here: DAY ONE

My First Virus Alert

And now on to the reason for the title to this post. Last night, just before starting to play scrabble with the family, I decided to install some kind of Adblocking software for IE.

Off I go to the microsoft to get a download from MS. is a portal that allows you to get a stack of addons for Internet Explorer, but beware – tharr be trojans about!

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Going Closed Source Day 3.


If you have not done so, start reading from day one here:DAY ONE

Time to take stock

Put things into perspective. It is now Saturday Morning, the beginning of my third day of using only closed-source, proprietary software. I am actually looking forward to today, I have sorted out the DVDrom related lockup issues with Windows7. I spoke to several people and they know people who used the RC and they swear the people they know have had “Absolutely No Problems.” Heck last night at a braai I even spoke to a fellow Linuxer who got the professional edition and swears the Tech Department by the company he works have had no problems whatsoever.

Today is going to be a good day methinks.

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Going Closed Source Day 2


If you missed day one of my trek through closed country read it here: Day One

Right, so day one – getting to grips with Windows, did not go well. Day 2 did not start out good either. I had to go back to Linux in order to do my morning tasks in the office because I AM STILL WITHOUT OFFICE!

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Going Closed Source. Day 1.


Today I got hold of the release version of Windows 7 Ultimate x64. We are a Microsoft Partner company and we get our hands on these kind of things before the normal populace.

Sitting there with 3.2Gigs worth of Windows Vista Problem Solver in my hands got me thinking.

I need to try it.

But I need to do more than just try it. I am a Linux geek and FLOSS fan, so I haven’t used proprietary software on a large scale for a long time. The odd driver here and there, and the odd piece of software there, but I have lived a FLOSS life for many years now.

Working in an IT environment means that I deal with proprietary software on a daily basis.

And here I am, two-and-a-bit hours into a world I never thought I would have ventured into again.

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About a week ago I had the unmitigated pleasure of heading out to a client to do a routine harddrive swop for their backups to be transferred offsite. This is a weekly thing that gets done to keep their data safe.

As I walked in the door the owner of the company (a financial planning business) asked me to check why they had run through their local bandwidth so quickly.

What I found both horrified and amused me.

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