Gameguru Mania Updated:06:50 PM EDT Apr,18


POPULAR CHAT TOPIC
Pillars of Eternity Patch v1
Virtuix Omni - Grand Theft A
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Has
Games Media Only Accounts fo
TechNews - W7 installs Windo
Grand Theft Auto - Windows U
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Scr
NVIDIA GeForce 350.12 WHQL D
Computer games for kids - To
Xbox 360 Getting 2 TB Hard D
Descent Underground Kickstar
Blue Estate - PC Gameplay -
GOG Lets You Reclaim Your Ga
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided Rev
Rainbow Six Siege Gameplay P
Witcher 3 Getting Two Massiv
Diablo 3 With A 3rd-Person C
Tomb Raider Sells 8.5 Millio
Squad Is Now on Steam Greenl
TechNews - Windows 7 Momentu
GTA Online Cheaters Punished
Microsoft Targets Halo Onlin


Please e-mail us if you have news.

(c) 1997-2015 Gameguru Mania
Privacy Policy statement
SEARCH GAME:   Windows 8.1 Tools    CD/DVD tools    SteamOS Beta
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,23 2005 - tech 
Enabling 2D Enhancements on GeForce 6 / 7 - tech
(hx) 10:33 AM EDT - Jul,23 2005 - Post a comment
GeForce 6 and 7 series have a dedicated 2D processor in charge of enhancing the quality of 2D videos executed by programs such as Windows Media Player. But there is an important detail that nVidia doesn't tell: the 2D enhancements are not automatically enabled. Hardware secrets will show you how this is done in this tutorial. But it's pretty easy, all you need to do is download, install and properly configure Windows Media Player 10 + nVidia DVD Decoder.

What results can you expect? Hardware Secrets claim: "When playing a video before configuring the video card decoder, the CPU load was between 8% and 18%. When we switched the video decoding to the video card the CPU load was between 2% and 3%, really impressive."
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,22 2005 - tech
Friday Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 09:44 AM EDT - Jul,22 2005 - Post a comment

SECURITY...

  • Worm disguised as iTunes threatens music fans - The virus-like program, dubbed Opanki, circulates via AOL Instant Messaging, or AIM. It passes itself off as an "iTunes.exe" file, leading iTunes users to think it's a legitimate file for the popular digital-media player from Apple Computer Inc., when in fact it has nothing to do with iTunes. The worm appears with the message "this picture never gets old" and includes a Web link to what looks like an image file, according to Trend Micro, the California security firm that reported it. Clicking on the link, however, downloads the iTunes.exe file, which installs itself onto the message recipient's computer.
  • Spying worm spreads via MSN Messenger, AIM - The latest threat is a Trojan called Kirvo, which arrives in the form of an instant message from someone on the user's "friends" list
  • Sophos Anti-Virus Zip DoS Vulnerability - Remote exploitation of a denial of service vulnerability in Sophos Plc.'s Sophos Anti-Virus engine allows attackers to exhaust CPU resources on the target system and prevent further scans.
  • Firefox Extension - Greasemonkey Flaw Prompts Critical Uninstall Warning - A very serious security vulnerability has been flagged in the popular Firefox browser add-on, and Greasemonkey users should immediately uninstall the program.
  • FBI and Spanish Police in biggest yet 419 raid - The FBI and Spanish police have arrested 310 people in Malaga, Spain in connection with a EURO 100m bogus (email) lottery scam run by Nigerian gangs. It is the biggest 419 bust in history, and may result in drastic reductions of scam mails.

OFFTOPIC...

  • David Goyer on the Blade TV Series - SCI FI Wire caught up with David Goyer who talked about the hour-long Blade series he's working on for Spike TV.
  • THQ Planning to Destroy All Humans! - According to Reuters, video game maker THQ Inc. has hired United Talent Agency Inc. to spearhead its effort to make a movie based on its recently released Destroy All Humans! title.
  • Get a free Gmail account  - Go to gmail.afraid.org and enter your e-mail address. Then you'll receive an invite to open a Gmail account for free.
  • Google Maps the Moon -  To celebrate the July 20, 1969 moon landing, Google has launched Google Moon as an extension of Google Maps and Google Earth
  • Brazilians used Orkut as drug distribution network - Brazilian police arrested 10 people on Thursday accused of selling drugs using Google's international social networking site Orkut, which is hugely popular in the Latin American country
  • Details of US microwave-weapon tests revealed - The ADS fires a 95-gigahertz microwave beam, which is supposed to heat skin and to cause pain but no physical damage. The ADS weapon's beam causes pain within 2 to 3 seconds and it becomes intolerable after less than 5 seconds. People's reflex responses to the pain is expected to force them to move out of the beam before their skin can be burnt.
  • Country Ranks 2004 - pretty interesting reading
  • Crazy Frog battered in net orgy of violence - Here's what the frog-battering wag down at Something Wrong - motto: "Someone has way too much time on their hands and I think it's you" - has to say about his Flashtastic online beat-'em-up (thanks TheRegister)

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Longhorn to become Windows Vista? - According to ActiveWin's insider sources, Longhorn will be branded Windows Vista (->whois.net) . Microsoft is expected to annouce the name of Windows Longhorn in a press release that will go live at 6am PDT. (thanks Neowin.net)
  • Mozilla Scraps Firefox 1.1, Looks to 1.5 - Mozilla has updated the Firefox development roadmap to reflect a decision on the next major release of the popular open-source browser. The non-profit foundation has decided to increase the version number of the next major release to 1.5 from 1.1, reflecting the sheer number of bug fixes and features that have been worked into the next version of the browser. Mozilla still plans to ship the next version of Firefox (now Firefox 1.5: "Deer Park") around September of this year.
  • New York Sues Sprint, Nextel, T-Mobile on Ads - The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs said it sued three of the top U.S. mobile providers, Sprint Corp, T-Mobile USA and Nextel Communications Inc., accusing them of misleading consumers through their advertising.
  • Microsoft offers glimpse at new Hotmail - Microsoft has released a beta of a new version of its Hotmail online email service. Codenamed 'Kahuna'. The new Hotmail has been rebuilt from the ground up and is "faster, safer and simpler to use", according to the spokesman. 'Kahuna' will offer 2GB of storage, a rich text editor and integrated protection against phishing scams, which attempt to steal sensitive information such as log-in names and passwords for online banks.
  • Beethoven downloads on BBC site top one million in the UK - Live performances of Beethoven's complete symphonies have attracted 1.37 million download requests in a BBC trial in the UK which was offered as part of Radio 3's The Beethoven Experience.
  • T-Mobile Germany reveals HSDPA plans for early 2006 - T-Mobile Germany has announced its plans to bring the HSDPA (High-Speed Downlink Packet Access) wireless technology to the market as early as March 2006. Using HSDPA it will be possible to achieve up to 1.8Mbps (megabits per second) via T-Mobile's UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) network
  • Japan to test terrestrial digital TV recasting via Internet - Japan plans to test live-broadcast of terrestrial digital television programs on the Internet via fiber-optic cable networks starting this fall, government officials said Thursday.
  • RSS tool sends out alerts for TV, radio - Search company Blinkx is set to launch a new service on Tuesday that lets consumers receive RSS alerts from a bevy of TV, radio and other broadcasters with which the company has partnered.
  • LCD Specs: Not So Swift - For about a month, an ad for Samsung's SyncMaster 915n LCD monitor touted the display's 4-millisecond response time, while Samsung's own Web site indicated that the monitor's response time was 8ms. "If you look at the printed ad, you'll see that the 4ms is black to white," says David Nichols, director of display marketing for Samsung's Information Technology Division. "The specs on the Web quote the full cycle [of rise-and-fall--i.e., black to white to black]. That's where it gets to be tricky. The 4ms is absolutely correct, and the 8ms is as well."

HARDWARE... 

  • Early 7800GT Performance - GDHardware have been able to secure secure some early performance numbers and picture on NVIDIA's pending 7800GT card which is said to debut at this year's QuakeCon. The card should retail for $399.00 - making it the clear winner in bang for the buck over the GTX cards
  • Crossfire Benchmarks - While the increase in performance isn't quite double, the increase from a single X850 XT to CrossFire, performance is up 43% as opposed to SLI's benefit of 34% over a single card. This is very impressive indeed. It may be that the higher single card performance of the NVIDIA part means that it has less room to improve, but no matter what the reason, this first test instantly legitimizes CrossFire as a real SLI competitor. ATI definitely has something to smile about here.
  • AMD to Adopt DDR2 Next Year - According to Anandtech, AMD has already developed a new processor lineup for Athlon 64 processors with DDR2.
  • ATI 'enables' CrossFire on Intel 955X chipset - ATI's CrossFire multi-GPU technology may work with motherboards based on Intel's 955X chipset when compatible graphics cards ship next month.
  • UItra Products 2*256MB PC3200 XL - Overclockers Online has published a new article on Ultra Products Xtreme Low Latency memory modules.
  • OCZ EL PC-3500 Gold GX and PC-4800 Platinum Motherboard - With its ultra-fast performance, high quality and reliability, the OCZ PC-3500 Gold GX edition is the perfect memory upgrade for memory-hungry gaming rigs.
  • Radeon X700 Pro Round Up -  Tech-Hounds.com tested boards from three different manufacturers. In alphabetical order they are the ASUS Extreme AX700 Pro 256 MB, Gigabyte X700 Pro 256 MB and the MSI RX700 Pro TD128E.
  • Seagate Cheetah 15K.4 ST3146854LC SCSI Hard Drive - Although it is priced at around $1000, that should not be something that would deter an IT professional to purchase it for a server at work. It is built to last and yields the performance that a busy multitasking environment requires.
  • ViewSonic VX924 19" LCD - The Viewsonic VX924 is a 19" LCD display that sports a 4ms response time. As part of Viewsonic's Extreme range of displays, it's designed for gamers, rather than image professionals or home users.
  • Zboard Battlefield 2 Keyset - The Zboard is a gaming keyboard. It has interchangeable keysets, and most people have two keysets. The normal (QWERTY) one, that makes it look like any average keyboard, and the gaming keyset, with its butterfly key layout, making it easier to hit the buttons and so therefore make it easier to play the games.
  • NetGear WPN824 - For most casual and demanding users, the Netgear RangeMax Wireless Router is an all-around excellent option. The adaptive internal antennas that compensate for interference provide great connectivity with excellent range. The security options are first rate, with dual firewalls, content blocking, and scheduled blocking. The box itself is refreshingly unique, and features a central porthole surrounded by blue LEDs that illuminate as the antennas adjust. This results in a constantly glistening tech gem that will mesmerize your friends for hours.
  • MSI Digi VOX USB 2.0 HDTV Broadcasting on your PC - Digi VOX USB 2.0 adapter allows you to watch and listen to digital TV and radio broadcasting on your PC or notebook.
  • Motorola RAZR V3 - While this phone looks like a million bucks, the functions are merely on-par with what the rest of the industry has to offer. The external display is a fair size, but the 4k CSN colour screen is disappointing, considering it is supposed to be used for picture caller ID and can serve as a camera screen when the phone is closed. For a premium phone, the lack of a 65k colour external screen really hurts.

GUIDES...

  • DDR vs. GDDR Memories - Learn the main differences between DDR (DDR2 and DDR3) and GDDR (GDDR2 and GDDR3) memories.
  • Hacking Windows XP: Speed Up Your Network and Internet Access - This excerpt from the ExtremeTech book, Hacking Windows XP, shows you how to tweak the Windows XP System Registry settings to improve network and Internet speed.
  • Hacking Windows XP: Hacking Windows Explorer - This is Chapter 5 from the ExtremeTech book Hacking Windows XP, published by Wiley. You can also read other excerpts from the book about speeding disk access, speeding up your network and internet access, and speeding up your system boot.

SOFTWARE...

  • Mozilla Suite 1.7.10 - This release (download) resolves several important security issues.
  • HOC Half-Life 2 Benchmark 1.5 - This is a new program that allows you to benchmark your system with today's most popular FPS-game, Half-Life 2. The program does not modify any registry-entries or configuration files, so it is completely safe to use. This new version adds 2048×1536 resolution, fast z-settings option and minimize HDD usage option.
  • ZoneAlarm Free 6.0.632.002 - ZoneAlarm (download) includes five interlocking security services that deliver easy-to-use, comprehensive protection. Unlike any other security utility, it incorporates a firewall, Application Control, an Internet Lock, dynamically assigned Security Levels and Zones. Combined, these elements yield the strongest security possible.
  • Kerio Personal Firewall 4.2.0 Final - Personal Firewall (changelog / download) is a necessity for all desktop computers connected to broadband Internet, using DSL, cable, ISDN, WiFi or satellite modems.
  • Fresh Download 7.34 - Fresh Download is an easy-to-use and very fast download manager software that turbo charge downloading files from the Internet, such as your favorite software, mp3 files, video files, picture collections, etc.
  • SpeedFan 4.25 - SpeedFan can even access S.M.A.R.T. info for those hard disks that support this feature and show hard disk temperatures too, if supported.
  • Overdrive Apocalypse Drivers 80.40 - These are modified NVIDIA ForceWare drivers for Windows 2000 & XP. Modified drivers simply means that the author takes official or beta drivers from the manufacturer and starts to tweak them for either better image quality and or performance
  • ForceWare 77.76 Win2000/XP beta - This driver is supposed to have all kinds of improvements and bug fixes. This set has not been WHQL qualified just yet. All GeForce models are supported with this driver release. 
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,21 2005 - tech
SLI antialiasing debuts - tech
(hx) 11:20 AM EDT - Jul,21 2005 - Post a comment
The chaps over at TechReport have managed to snag an early copy of NVIDIA's new drivers (v77.76) and put SLI antialiasing to the test. There are two new SLI antialiasing modes, 8X SLI and 16X SLI. Both are made available on SLI systems after the installation of NVIDIA's new graphics driver.
However, SLI AA has its limitations, including what I would consider unexpectedly poor performance in many cases and an apparent incompatibility with Half-Life 2. I haven't had time to test SLI AA yet as extensively as I'd like, but my brief experience with it over the past couple of days has been rather shaky. I wouldn't call SLI AA a sensible tradeoff of performance for image quality in most situations. SLI 8X mode is too often slower than NVIDIA's regular 8xS mode and offers a near-imperceptible improvement in AA quality. SLI 16X mode only makes sense in heavily CPU-constrained games that offer acceptable performance almost no matter what the graphics subsystem is doing. Perhaps the picture will look different given more time.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,20 2005 - tech
Thursday Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 10:09 AM EDT - Jul,20 2005 - Post a comment

SECURITY...

  • Workarounds Released for XP SP2 Flaw - In the advisory, Microsoft recommends the following workarounds to help block known attack vectors: Block TCP port 3389 at the firewall, Disable Terminal Services or the Remote Desktop feature, Secure Remote Desktop Connections by using an IP Security policy, Secure Remote Desktop Connections by employing a VPN.
  • SiteKey to Prevent Phishing - An article at CNN talks about a new system called SiteKey which will be rolled out at Bank of America across the U.S. by this fall. With SiteKey, bank customers pick three challenge questions -- things only the customer would know, such as the year and model of the customer's first car -- and provide them with the traditional password to log on.
  • Hackers get into USC database - A University of Southern California database containing about 270,000 records of past applicants was hacked last month, officials said on Tuesday. The breach of the university's online application database exposed "dozens" of records, which included names and Social Security numbers, to unauthorized individuals, said Katharine Harrington, USC dean of admissions and financial aid.
  • Rootkit Detection Coming to Windows AntiSpyware - Microsoft plans to integrate rootkit detection technology from its Strider Ghostbuster research project into future versions of the Windows AntiSpyware application. FYI, the latest beta refresh, build 1.0.615, addresses issues pertaining to how Windows AntiSpyware (Beta) provides information to the user about processes running on a PC, solves an issue regarding the delivery of new anti-spyware signatures for some customers and provides new signature updates to help protect against recently identified spyware.
  • China attempts to sink MP3 pirates - Baidu.com, China's answer to Google, has announced that it is to delete thousands of links to internet sites offering pirated music. The move is a response to requests from R2G, a Chinese digital rights management company, which is currently preparing for a US initial public offering expected to raise around $55m.
  • Kaspersky Lab's Malware Evolution: April - June 2005 - This report by leading Kaspersky Lab virus analysts offers insights into the activity of the computer underground, and contains detailed analysis of the technologies and techniques currently being used by cyber.
    criminals.

OFFTOPIC...

  • Killin' Time with Rob Zombie - Taking a night off from the Ozfest tour, Rob Zombie talked to ComingSoon.net about his latest movie, which might end up being every bit as controversial as his first one.
  • John Moore to Direct The Omen 666 - 20th Century Fox has hired Behind Enemy Lines and Flight of the Phoenix helmer John Moore to direct The Omen 666, reports Variety. The film is a remake of the 1976 horror classic about the arrival of the Antichrist in the home of an unsuspecting family.
  • Humanoid Robot HR-2 - The HR-2 robot was constructed during a period of three months at Chalmers University in Sweden. It has 22 degrees of freedom which enables it to easily move around imitating human motions. The robot is also equipped with stereovision giving it possibilities to perform hand-eye coordination. For that task an artificial neural network is evolved.

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Xbox 360 Launch Date: November 4 2005 - According to a slip-up on the Microsoft Partner site, Microsoft has announced the launch date of Xbox 360 as November 4 - 2005. Since the mistake, Microsoft has quickly removed the infomation ;)
  • Microsoft sues Google, former employee over hiring - Microsoft stepped its rivalry with Google up a notch Tuesday, filing a lawsuit against the search company over Google's hiring of a former Microsoft employee.
  • DVD swapper presses retailers for play - Buy a new DVD and get two or three used ones for free--that's the deal DVD-swapping site Peerflix is pitching at retailers.
  • NEC develops speedy 3G-WLAN handover tech - The company has tested a router that can connect a notebook PC to both WLAN access points and third-generation (3G) base stations when the router and PC are in a car travelling at 124 miles per hour, according to Yukiko Yano, manager at NEC Corp.'s Ubiquitous Platform Development Division.
  • Vertical hard drive doubles storage capacity - A Japanese company claims to be able to double storage capacity with the world's first commercially available perpendicular magnetic recording hard drive. Standard hard drives write data to disk in horizontal strips across a rotating platter. But the enhanced technique from Showa Denko KK (SDK) writes vertically onto the disk, allowing for much greater data compression.

HARDWARE... 

  • Geforce 7800GT to arrive on 11th of August - If Nvidia doesn't change its plans, you should be able to get one for about $399 at launch and the partners expect that it might drop fast to much less than that.
  • eVGA 7800 GTX green beast - HardOCP has posted images of the new GeForce 7800 cooler from American firm eVGA.
  • Intel preps Pentium D core update - The chip maker will offer samples of the updated Pentium Extreme Edition 840 chip and the Pentium D 820, 830 and 840 processors on 5 August, Intel documents reveal, ahead of commercial product availability on 21 October. The update will see the introduction of a new core, B-0 - the current 'stepping' is A-0 - which will be accompanied by a change in CPUID code from F44 to F47.
  • Chieftec BRAVO Big Tower now available with DUAL Radiator Water Cooling - The Chieftec BIG Tower taken from the BRAVO Series is already available with an integrated innovatek High End Water Cooling System with a DUAL Radiator. Only the remaining hardware components must be installed. Because of the integrated HPPS Plus 12V Pump you do not need any additional connection to the outside of the PC. The system is directly connected to the power supply in the PC and is ready for usage almost at once.
  • innovatek HDM Hard Drive Cooling and Decoupling System - The completely closed HDM Dampening Boxes cool and decouple each Hard Drive reliable and effective and lower the temperatures and noise levels to a perfect level. The two-parts Aluminium Decouplig System (consist of an internal and an external frame) ensure highest effectiveness. The Hard Drive is to be mounted in the Aluminium internal frame and is thereby optimally cooled and decoupled. An additional dampening with foamed material (which would just suffocate and heat the Hard Drive) is not necessary any more.
  • Gigabyte 3D Aurora Enthusiast Computer Case - The Gigabyte 3D Aurora is a fantastic case in terms of features and looks and it's good to see that it's far more then just a slightly readjusted design of another brand's case. One of the cool features that you can see on the front page is the inclusion of the Customizable Light Beam Projector. While the case comes with one that says 3D Aurora, you have a customizable one included that can have your own classy message on it. This is great as you could have something like your nick name shine out when you're at your local LAN event - very cool.
  • Intel Pentium D 820 - Looking at the benchmarks on previous pages, we see the Pentium D 820 performing very well in Video Encoding and 3D rendering. It also performs quite well in multi tasking which is what most of us do nowadays so the low scores in single everyday applications shouldn't be much of a problem.
  • G.Skill F1-4800DSU2-1GBFR DDR600 2T dual channel memory kit - Running at the tightest timings, being 2/2/2/5 with 1T command was a bit of disappointment with these modules. While they did work, their clocking ability was instantly destroyed. Most TCCD based modules can work with these timings at a reasonable speed, but the best these could do was o­nly 210 MHz. Of course it helps if you overclock o­nly for benching, as you can set the timings very tight for everyday use and swap them with loose timings and clocking ability for running benchmarks.
  • Intel socket LGA775 Pentium 4, Pentium D, Celeron D and Prescott motherboards list - A handy list of socket LGA775 motherboards from Abit, Asus, Biostar, Chaintech, DFI, ECS, Gigabyte, MSI & Soltek manufacturers.
  • BFG 6600GT OC Video Card - This is a PCI-Express type of card and fits into the x16 card slot. The media sensationalist features of the card are numerous, including NVIDIA SLI multi-GPU ready, Superscalar GPU architecture, NVIDIA CineFX 3.0 engine, High Speed GDDR3 memory interface, Microsoft DirectX 9.0 Shader Model 3.0 support.
  • HIS X800XL IceQ Turbo - The HIS X800XL is an exceptional card, the cost to performance ratio is tough to beat, and if you are like me you always look to get the biggest bang for your buck. A video card is a sizable investment, even if it is a mid range card.
  • HIS X800XT 256MB AGP - This card is perfect for those upgrading from anything in the 9x00 range of videocards from ATI or the 5x00 range from Nvidia, but if you have anything newer or faster than those series, you are best holding off on buying anything seeing you won't see the performance difference from the $300-$400 investment.
  • Leadtek WinFast PX6600 GT TDH SLI Video - Yet another problem with SLI is that you don't get a performance gain from adding a second card in some games, while a GeForce 6800 GT or a RADEON X800 XL will always give you their maximum performance. The stability of the dual-chip solution is also lower than that of the single-chip card - you may have image artifacts in some games with certain driver versions in the multi-GPU mode.
  • MSI GeForce 6800 SLI - HardOCP take a look at the MSI NX6800-TD128E, which is a GeForce 6800 with 128MB of DDR.
  • DVD Burners Roundup - CDRInfo compared eight of drives. They compared reading speed, ripping speed, error correction capabilities, backup capabilities and drive features.
  • BenQ DW1640 Internal DVD Writer - The drive also proved its speed and efficiency in DAE and DVD decrypting, exhibiting accurate and fast extraction speed under Nero CD DAE and DVD Decrypter. Not a single error was reported throughout the tests, which is further assurance that users will almost certainly end up with perfect digital replicas of their prized Audio CDs and DVD movies. Outstanding media compatibility was another merit we had to give to the DW1640 because all media were correctly detected and written at their respective specified rating, regardless of its origin of manufacture.
  • Are 17" LCDs Dead?  (17" comparison) - What lessons have we learned from this comparison? First of all, classic-panel 17" monitors are definitely slower than those with overdrive. Game-play-immersion is inferior and none of the monitors tested are capable of displaying video of sufficient quality. As far as overall performance goes, 17" LCDs are their way to the back of the class.
  • Belkin MediaPilot Keyboard - The last thing, which I consider a negative and a positive, is the built in mouse on the keyboard. When you're first using it, you may find it's a bit weird having the mouse and the buttons spread out so far from each other and must use two hands to properly control the mouse. This of course is something one grows used to.
  • Gigaworks Progamer G500 - The G500's come in a handsome packaging and design – the Color scheme and overall look are modern and can be easily place in most spaces. The metal grills over the satellites and subwoofer driver have an industrial-type look that we're sure will have a wide appeal to gamers and desktop-theater users.
  • Logitech Premium USB Headset 350 - The TechZone reviews a premium headset from Logitech.
  • Samsungs HT-P38 Integrated DVD-Receiver Home Theater - Techtastic take a look at one of these home theater kits from Samsung, their HT-P38 Integrated DVD/Receiver Home Theater. The HT-P38 comes with a 5 DVD changer with integrated power amp, 5.1 surround sound speakers, and can even play Divx formatted discs.
  • HP Photosmart M22 digital camera - Available for under L85, the 4.0 megapixel Photosmart M22 is one of the lowest-priced major brand cameras on the market, which makes its watersports credentials all the more impressive. It is also the smallest and cheapest camera to feature HP's Adaptive Lighting technology and in-camera red-eye reduction.
  • Frontier Labs NEX 3 MP3/FM Media Player - The NEX 3 one of the four products the company currently sells; actually two of its products are based off of the NEX 3 with the NEX 3+ adding a FM transmitter to the NEX 3 so you could listen to your MP3s in the car or in your home over your radio.
  • Samsung T7 Series MP3 Player Roundup - CoolTechZone has posted a Samsung T7 Series MP3 Player Roundup.

GUIDES...

  • BIOS optimization guide (updated rev 8.0) - There are so many BIOS options today that it has become somewhat of a headache trying to configure a BIOS properly.
  • Value gaming PC buyer's guide - The $1,000 budget gets eaten up pretty quick, and slapping down the cash for a 21" LCD, Pentium 840 Extreme Edition, or Athlon 64 X2 4800+ would take care of it in very short order.
  • DDR2 Memory Tutorial - Everything you need to know about DDR2 memories, including the main differences between DDR and DDR2.
  • Xbox 360 vs. PS3: an in-depth look - This article takes an in depth look at how the two systems compare.
  • Windows Desktop Heap Tweak Guide - The desktop heap is a section of memory reserved for the storage of menus, hooks, strings and windows. This heap is allocated memory from a fixed 48MB system buffer that is also used to store printer data and font drivers. By default, Windows allocates a total of 4.5MB of memory for the desktop heap. But if the system ever runs out of space in the desktop heap, it won't be able to load new windows. It's as simple as that!

SOFTWARE...

  • Windows 2003 Volume Shadow Copy Service patch - On a Windows Server 2003-based computer that has many shadow copies that are being used, the paged pool memory on the computer may become exhausted. This problem may occur when the shadow copy snapshots are of large volumes and when each volume contains many files. After you install the update, Microsoft Windows dismounts unused shadow copies when paged pool memory is low.
  • Firefox 1.0.6 / Thunderbird 1.0.6. - Those fixes are present in the now extension-friendly versions of the two programs, which can be downloaded as follows: Firefox 1.0.6; Thunderbird 1.0.6. Also from the Mozilla stable, the Camino browser for Mac OS X has taken another step towards fulfillment.
  • BitTorrent 4.0.3 - BitTorrent is a peer-to-peer protocol designed to transfer files. Users connect directly to send and receive portions of a file, while a central tracker coordinates the action of all peers and manages connections without knowledge of the contents of the files being distributed.
  • JoJoThumb 2.9.5 - JoJoThumb (download) is a utility that allows you to create thumbnails of images and building a complete HTML-based gallery with an index-page, thumbnail-pages and image-pages.
  • PSPad v4.3.3 Final Build 2092 - PSPad (download) editor is freeware programmer editor.
  • NEC ND6650A patched firmware - These firmwares are untested, so you may encounter problems when trying this firmware. Download ND6650A 1.23 bitsetting, riplock removed and RPC1 firmwares from Liggy and Dee's modified firmware site.
Mozilla Firefox v1.0.6 - tech
(hx) 07:45 AM EDT - Jul,20 2005 - Post a comment
Mozilla has released version 1.0.6 of Firefox, fixing several security issues as outlined in the release notes. The one for Win32 can be downloaded from the official FTP (local US mirror ~ 4.7MB), and those for other languages and OS - from here This new version restores API compatibility for extensions and web applications that did not work in Firefox 1.0.5.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,19 2005 - tech
ATI CATALYST 5.7 performance analysis - tech
(hx) 11:15 AM EDT - Jul,19 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)
Last week saw ATI release their latest driver set (5.7), containing improvements targeted at users of 128MB and 64MB boards. To put them to the test, EliteBastards ran a Radeon X700 Pro through a number of benchmarks to see how this new driver set fared:
As far as performance is concerned, there certainly isn't any bad news from this driver set for users of 128MB (And we can assume 64MB, if there are many of those still around) boards. However, gamers certainly shouldn't expect the kind of spectacular framerate increases promised in the release notes at the settings they are likely to be playing at. I have no doubt that ATI's quoted improvements at 1600x1200 with 6x anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering are correct, but let's be honest - Who uses 128MB boards at those settings?
ATI plans CrossFire rebate - tech
(hx) 04:27 AM EDT - Jul,19 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)
Xbit Labs is reporting that ATI will offer a $100 rebate to those buying into its CrossFire multi-card graphics platform. In order to get a rebate, customers should purchase a RADEON X8-series product, register it and get a so-called e-coupon, buy a RADEON X8- CrossFire Edition graphics card by September 29th and then mail in the completed e-coupon and the UPC code from the CrossFire Edition graphics card. ATI promises to send a $100 check within 8 weeks after the company receives the codes.

Currently ATI ships numerous RADEON X8-series graphics cards for PCI Express x16 bus that may power dual-GPU systems in collaboration with RADEON X8 CrossFire Edition products. Pricing of RADEON X8 family of products starts at $199 and ends at $549. ATI's RADEON X8 CrossFire Edition graphics cards will be priced at $249, $299 and $549 depending on the model.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,18 2005 - tech
Nightly Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 08:14 PM EDT - Jul,18 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)

SECURITY...

OFFTOPIC...

  • Mysterious planet baffles experts - The hefty planet is bigger than Jupiter although it stays very close to its main star; 20 times closer, in fact, than the Earth is to our Sun
  • Weinstein & WB Team on Ninja Turtles - The Weinstein Company and Warner Bros. Pictures announced today that they will join forces to distribute the first all-CG-animated movie in the long and phenomenally successful history of the "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" franchise. The announcement was made today by Jeff Robinov, President of Production, Warner Bros. Pictures, and Harvey Weinstein of The Weinstein Company. The as-yet-untitled picture will be released early in 2007. The movie will be directed by Kevin Munroe from his own screenplay, developed in consultation with Turtles co-creator Peter Laird.
  • Doom: the Movie details - The first few details have emerged about Doom: the Movie, "loosely" based, of course, on the iconic first person shooter game of the early Nineties. Dark Horizons has ten photos from the film, due for release on 21st October in the US, and a week later in Blighty.

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Coding Misstep Forces new Firefox Release - The open-source Firefox browser and Thunderbird e-mail client will be updated for the second time in a week because of code changes that have unintentionally stopped some third-party extensions from functioning correctly. The updates will take Firefox and Thunderbird to version 1.0.6, while the Mozilla Suite will be updated to version 1.7.10, wrote representatives from the Mozilla Foundation on the group's developer news blog. Mozilla oversees the software's development.
  • Video iPod May Arrive in September - MSNBC is reporting that Apple is in talks with major record labels to license and sell video content on the iTunes music store. The videos would sell for $1.99 and be playable on a video iPod, which Apple has reported may come out sometime in September.
  • Gates puzzled why more students don't choose computer science - Speaking to hundreds of university professors, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said Monday that he's baffled more students don't go into computer science.
  • Defense Department Buys HP Computers To Design Weapons - The DoD system is based on a 1,024-node Cluster Platform 4000 from HP that uses ProLiant DL145 servers with Opteron processors from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. The cluster runs on a Linux operating system.
  • End of the road for IBM's OS/2 - IBM will stop selling the OS/2 operating system at year's end, marking an end of an era for Big Blue. IBM, which made the announcement this week, said it will discontinue OS/2 products by 23 December and withdraw standard support for OS/2-related products as of 31 December 2006. Support for OS/2 will only be available under a service contract after 2006.
  • $1 domains for the developing world - The developing world could soon see .org domain names for just $1 under a new scheme by non-for-profit registry PIR

HARDWARE... 

  • Mus Computer Mouse From Creator of Optimus Keyboard - From the creators of the Optimus Keyboard, Mus is a radically designed computer mouse (images) for Macintosh users. It is a one-button computer mouse shaped like a cursor. However, it lacks several important and useful features that are found in most mouse today - scrolling wheel, wireless capabilities and additonal buttons.
  • Seagate Barracuda 7200.8 200GB Hard Disk Drive - There are no real negatives to report on these drives. The only thing that may be worth considering when shopping for SATA hard drives is that SATA II drives have already hit the market.
  • Thecus N4100 IP Storage Appliance - If you're looking for a new means of storing and protecting the vast amount of data you have somehow managed to acquire, then ask yourself whether an IP storage solution would be feasible for you. If you really need a 100% uptime, network attached storage device with access control and hotswap array rebuilds, and you don't mind the 7 hour RAID 5 build (which is only likely to be an issue once,) then the N4100 is worth considering. Just bear in mind that 900GB of protected network attached storage in a sexy black box will set you back a grand.
  • HP dvd640i LightScribe DVD Writer - First things first, this is a very slow DVD writer, at least it is by modern standards. In fact it's been many months since I've seen test results as slow as those turned in by the HP dvd640i, but this drive isn't about raw performance. In fact, despite it's undoubtedly tardy behaviour it has one trick up it's sleeve that no other DVD writer I've reviewed has exhibited - LightScribe functionality.
  • OptoRite TED80Y1 8x USB 2.0 DVD±RW - This is an external USB 2.0 drive and is able to write at 8x at DVD+R, 4x at DVD-R/DVD-RW/DVD+RW. The maximum read speed for DVDs is 8x.
  • BenQ FP91V LCD Monitor - The BenQ FP91V+ is a great package for any user—even gamers. It provides an excellent range of contrast, brightness, colour, an excellent response rate, and deals admirably well with both colour intensity and motion display. While I do have reservations with the sound quality, it is about as much as you can expect from a 4W system; if this is a problem, just don't use them.
  • ViewSonic VX724 - 4ms 17in TFT - TrustedReviews take a look at the 17in VX724 from ViewSonic, which it claims has a 4ms response time.
  • Buffalo AirStation MIMO - The jewel in Buffalo's crown is undoubtedly its AOSS technology which we found takes the pain out of setting up securely encrypted wireless links. MIMO performance and extended range are also very impressive although general router features and design aren't as good as Netgear's WPN824.
  • Chenbro Gaming Bomb II Case - Bjork3D takes a look at Chenbro Gaming Bomb II Case.

GUIDES...

SOFTWARE...

  • FastStone Image Viewer 2.17 Beta (7-18 Build) - FastStone Image Viewer (download) is an image browser, viewer, converter and editor with an easy to use interface and a nice array of features that include resizing, renaming, cropping, color adjustments, watermarks and more.
  • Fraps 2.6.3 - Fraps is a tool that lets you monitor current framerates in a corner of the screen for programs using DirectX or OpenGL technology.
  • MozBackup 1.4.2 - MozBackup (download) is a utility for creating backups of Mozilla, Mozilla Firefox, Mozilla Thunderbird and Netscape profiles. It allows you to backup mail, favorites, contacts, etc.
  • ClamWin Free Antivirus 0.86.1 - ClamWin is a Free Antivirus for Microsoft Windows 98/Me/2000/XP/2003. It provides a graphical user interface to the Clam AntiVirus engine.
  • Windows Post Install Wizard - Windows Post-Install Wizard is a hypertext application designed for giving users choice. While Windows XP offers many ways of customizing the setup process out of the box, its major drawback is the lack of being able to select which applications an end user may install. In the past, end users and administrators needed to either download the files manually, or create overly complex scripts that could only be used once. WPI allows you to create one image, which can then be custom configured, and optionally, automated, so that end users can install any applications.
  • BitTorrent 4.0.3 Final & 4.1.3 Beta - download
  • AIM Ad Hack 4.09 - With this small file (download) you can effectively remove all the ads from AIM you must be using.
  • foobar2000 0.9 beta 6 - Foobar2000 is an advanced audio player for the Windows platform.
  • Winamp 5.094 - Nullsoft Winamp (download lite / full version) is a fast, flexible, high-fidelity media player for Windows.
  • G-Force 3.0.1 - G-Force is a music visualization plug-in (download) for media players that also visualizes auxiliary or "line-in" audio. G-Force features fast anti-aliased effects, millions of possible visual combinations, savable and scriptable effects, and unparalleled expandability.
  • DVDFab Decrypter 2.9.2.3 - This new version 2.9.2.3 fixes a compatibility problem with DVD Shrink and Nero Recode when copying movies, protected with newer versions of the Sony ARccOS protection.
  • Cuttermaran 1.65 - Cuttermaran (download) is a cut program for MPEG1 or MPEG2 video streams.
  • nVidia BIOS Modifier (v.2.1) - This tool (NBM) is intended for modification of BIOSes of nVidia 6x00 and 7x00 cards ONLY!!! BIOSes of nVidia 5x00 and older aren't supported.
  • PCI Latency Tool 2.3 - Utility to set PCI Latency and prevent game stutter or simply improve FPS. This tweak is an important one, and one well worth checking into. Apparently, newer high-end video cards hog PCI latency for no known reason.
  • ATI Tray Tools 1.0.3.720 - ATI Tray Tools is a small utility that can be found in the windows tray which then allows instant access to options and settings
  • NGO NVIDIA Optimized Driver 1.7772 - The NGO nVidia Optimized Driver (download) is a tweaked version of the nVidia Forceware driver. The main purpose is to satisfy the users with a better performance and better image quality. The Driver has support for all Geforce cards.
  • NGO ATI Optimized Driver 1.5.7 - The NGO ATI Optimized Driver (download) is a tweaked version of the ATI Catalyst driver. The main purpose is to satisfy the users with a better performance and better image quality. The Driver has support for all Radeon cards.
  • nForce4 AMD Edition 6.66 WHQL - Nvidia have just released a new set of nForce Drivers version 6.66 WHQL for Windows 2000/XP and Windows XP/Server 2003 (64-Bit).
Microsoft Makes Longhorn Performance Promises - tech
(hx) 06:54 PM EDT - Jul,18 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)
Amy Stephan, a senior product manager with the Windows client unit, outlined some of the various Longhorn "fundamentals," including systems management and deployment features, which Microsoft is readying. Stephan told conference attendees that Longhorn will:
- launch applications 15 percent faster than Windows XP does
- boot PCs 50 percent faster than they boot currently and will allow PCs to resume from standby in two seconds
- allow users to patch systems with 50 percent fewer reboots required
- reduce the number of system images required by 50 percent
- enable companies to migrate users 75 percent faster than they can with
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,16 2005 - tech
Saturday Tech Madness - tech
(hx) 02:08 PM EDT - Jul,16 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)

SECURITY...

  • Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) program enforced from July 26 - If you use a pirated Windows Operating System and download new updates and drivers from the Microsoft download centre, you may be in for a surprise from July 26. In a global initiative aimed at nudging users to shift to genuine Windows software, Microsoft will kick off its Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) program from July 26.
  • Microsoft Investigates New XP SP2 Flaw  - A newly discovered and as-of-yet unpatched security vulnerability in Windows XP could let an attacker remotely crash computers with WinXP SP2, with the default firewall turned on. The flaw affects the Windows Remote Desktop Service, which lets users access their Windows PC from a remote location. An attacker could remotely exploit the problem to crash a victim's PC in what's known as a denial-of-service attack, according to a posting on the Security Protocols Web site earlier this week. The user would then see the Windows "blue screen of death."
  • Hackers attack Mozilla site to spread spam - Hackers attacked a site promoting Firefox last weekend in order to commandeer it to send spam, the Mozilla Foundation said on Friday. The attack was limited to community marketing site SpreadFirefox.com. In a statement, the Mozilla Foundation said the unspecified security vulnerabilities were exploited to mount the attack. SpreadFirefox.com was taken down after the attack was discovered on Tuesday, 12 July but has now been restored online. The Mozilla Foundation said the break-in on 10 July by unknown attackers did not affect other mozilla.org web sites or Mozilla software.
  • Sophos Anti-Virus ZIP Archive Denial of Service Vulnerability - A vulnerability has been reported in Sophos Anti-Virus, which can be exploited by malicious people to cause a DoS (Denial of Service). The vulnerability is caused due to missing validation checks on the "Extra field length" value when scanning a ZIP archive compressed using the BZIP2 algorithm. This can be exploited to cause an infinite loop that consumes large amount of CPU resources via a malicious ZIP file with an extra field length value of "0xFFFF".
  • Worm spells double trouble for PCs - The new pest, Lebreat, is a combined network worm and mass-mailing worm, F-Secure said. Once run on a PC, it installs a backdoor for hackers, downloads the mass-mailer code and attempts to launch a denial-of-service attack that targets security giant Symantec's Web site, the Finnish antivirus specialist said. The malicious code is also known as Breatle and Reatle at other antivirus companies.
  • Patches issued for Kerberos flaws - The bugs all affect version 1.4.1 of Kerberos v5, and impact third-party software using the affected components, MIT said. MIT published patching instructions in its advisories and said the problems would be addressed in the forthcoming version 1.4.2.
  • Vulnerabilities in Cisco's VOIP system - Cisco Systems Inc. has disclosed that a core component of its enterprise VOIP system is vulnerable to several serious security flaws. The flaws could allow remote attackers to compromise a company's VOIP network, redirect or listen in on calls and carry out other malicious intent, according to Cisco and Internet Security Systems (ISS), which discovered the flaws.
  • Startup offers free Wi-Fi security - WiTopia quietly started offering its SecureMyWiFi service free of charge for home users and small business just a couple of weeks ago. The gratis level of service supports one wireless router or access point and up to five users.

OFFTOPIC...

  • Training Tae Kwon Do With My DVD Player - My pet, which played only the DVDs it felt like 'in the mood' for playing - a chronic problem on the optical unit for this particular model, I learned from other friends with the same problem -, has finally drop dead. So, the time has come... After several months thinking what I would do with it, I finally destroyed it.
  • Ten year-old becomes Microsoft engineer - Arfa Karim Randhawa, aged 10, has become the youngest person to be certified as a Microsoft engineer. Randhawa passed her Microsoft Certified Professional examinations last year. She met Bill Gates this week and was taken on a tour of Microsoft's Redmond campus.
  • Disney World Collecting Fingerprints - Disney World is now requiring all visitors to have their index and middle fingers scanned to gain entrance to the park. This started for season pass holders, but is now required for everyone.
  • Robinov on a new Conan movie - Though Arnold Schwarzenegger's got too much else on his plate to take up sword-fighting again - Warner still want to bring "Conan the Barbarian" back to the multiplex.  Talking to The Hollywood Reporter, Warners production president Jeff Robinov, who with director Chris Nolan has successfully reinvented the "Batman" franchise, says he's hoping to do the same with the "Conan" franchise. Waiting for a "Conan" script from an unnamed action writer-director (rumoured to be Robert Rodriguez), Robinov is committed to producing the film within the next year.
  • Comic-Con: V For Vendetta Audio Interview - Natalie Portman, producers Joel Silver and Grant Hill, and original graphic novel co-creator David Lloyd presented Warner Bros.' V For Vendetta at Comic-Con International in San Diego today and ComingSoon.net/SuperheroHype.com got a chance to talk to them (23MB ~MP3) about the anticipated adaptation, opening November 4th.
  • Marvel, Xbox 360 ink for Web game - Marvel Enterprises and Microsoft announced a partnership Thursday at Comic-Con International in San Diego to bring a massively multiplayer online role-playing game to its new Xbox 360 game console in 2008.

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Philips Pioneers Long-Lasting LED Streetlamps - Philips has put up the first streetlamps that use light-emitting diodes (LEDs), which last four times longer than normal street lighting, the Dutch electronics group said on Friday. With 50,000 light hours, LED lamps do not have to be changed for 12 years when lit for an average 11 to 12 hours a day.
  • Firefox Continues to Spread - Firefox increased its market share to 8.71 percent, up from 8 percent in May, while IE's share shrank to 86.56 percent from 87.23 percent, NetApplications.com, an Aliso Viejo, California, maker of applications for monitoring and measuring Web site usage, said this week in a statement.
  • Mass layoffs loom for HP - HP is expected to initiate a corporate restructuring within the next two weeks that could see as many as 15,000 layoffs.
  • Dell guilty of 'misleading' advertising - The complaint centred around broadcast ads by Dell which began with the statement that Dell used Pentium 4 processors. The advert then continued that Dell computers were available from L349 without mentioning that this was for PCs using Intel's low cost Celeron processor.
  • Dell Rejects Spyware Charge - Dell has rejected allegations that it's PCs come pre-loaded with an intrusive application that spies on users' surfing habits. The equipment manufacturer said there was nothing untoward about My Way Search Assistant despite complaints from customers that the toolbar impairs computer performance, changes browser settings and is difficult to remove.
  • Dual-vision TV a peacemaker - A new type of television will provide a hi-tech peace treaty for those endless family rows about who gets to watch what: the world's first liquid crystal display that shows two completely different images depending on where you are sitting. Equipped with DualView - a British technology designed at Sharp's laboratories in Oxford - a flat-screen TV can be showing EastEnders to everyone sitting on the right-hand side of the sofa, while those on the left (and listening with headphones) could be playing a video game or watching the football. The crucial factor is the angle from which the viewer watches the screen.
  • Konica Minolta unveils cheaper digital SLR camera - Konica Minolta said its new camera will retail for about 100,000 yen ($890) in Japan for the body only. Canon, Nikon, Pentax Corp. and Olympus Corp. have already introduced digital SLRs in that price range. The new camera will be launched worldwide in August and September, sold under the name "alpha sweet" in Japan, "Maxxum 5D" in North America and "Dynax 5D" in Europe. Konica Minolta expects to initially produce about 50,000 units per month..
  • CyberLink supports UDF 2.5/2.6 formats for Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD generation - CyberLink announced today support for the Universal Disc Format 2.5 and 2.6 (UDF), the burning standard for the next generation of disc formats - Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD respectively.

HARDWARE... 

  • R520 is a dual slot card - Many sources who have seen one have confirmed that ATI's next generation card looks just like its previous Radeon X800XT PE card. The reference design implies that you will need dual slot cooling. Chip will be clocked incredible high and our sources implies that will end up much higher than 600MHz plus than we suggested before. Some of the cards have left ATI's headquarters but R520 clock speeds are not settled as it's a matter of yields. We know that ATI will be getting in for a hard launch sometime in September time, so it has to have the real hardware as soon as it launches.
  • Nvidia's G71 is also dual slot - The "Faster G70", which is how the G71 is being called internally now, targets almost insane clock speeds. We have learned that several boards achieved a clock speed of 800MHz, which just goes to prove that tweaks being done in 110nm G71 core will make R520 tremble, and force ATI to respond with its 32-pipe R580 as soon as possible.
  • AGP is not dead - According to some research done by The Inquirer, they believe that the dying AGP interface is still putting up a good fight in terms of the current top selling ABIT motherboards in the UK. The AV8-3rd Eye appears to be ABIT's best selling motherboard at the moment - it's based on the K8T800 Pro chipset. The AV8, without the Guru clock is also placed in its top 10 selling motherboards, at number 7 in fact. Both second and third best sellers are also based around VIA's K8T800 Pro chipset, with the KM400A and KV8-Pro taking those spots.
  • Graphics Cards Maker Revamps NVIDIA GeForce 7800 Cooling System - EVGA is currently gearing up to use Asymmetric Cooling System, which is may be targeted to provide more efficient cooling compared to reference design and also minimize chances of damage during installation. The new cooler fully encapsulates the board, giving it rather exotic outlook and protecting it against incautious handling. However, a cooling system that covers the whole board may have its drawbacks: large radiator on the backside may prevent proper dissipation of heat at least in some computer cases.
  • MSI launches 64-bit AMD Turion Mega Book S270 - Micro-Star International (MSI) yesterday announced the availability of the Mega Book S270, a wide-screen notebook that supports 64-bit AMD Turion 64 mobile technology. The Mega Book S270 will come in tow configurations, priced at NT$47,900 (US$1,499) and NT$39,900 (US$1,252). The NT$47,900 Mega Book S270-W019TC features an AMD Turion 64 1.6GHz CPU, a wide-screen 12.1-inch display, 512MB of DDR333 memory (upgradeable to 2GB), an 80GB HDD, three USB ports and a built-in SD/MS/MMC three-in-one card reader.
  • Mushkin 1GB XP4000 2-2-2 REDLINE Dual Pack - The amazing thing with these modules is that we can even run it at these overclocked speed (270MHz) at the most extreme latencies of CAS 1.5-2-2-5 rock solid. This is the first time we have had DDR running at this incredible timings at these speeds.
  • Abit Fatal1ty AA8XE - TrustedReviews posted a review of the Abit Fatal1ty AA8XE.
  • MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum - With this motherboard, users need not to upgrade to a PCI-E graphics card because it supports AGP 8X at its fullest. So if you are planning to upgrade to AMD 64 platform without having to buy a new graphics card or a 24pin power supply, the K8N Neo2 Platinum should definitely be in your buy list.
  • BFG GeForce 7800 GTX OC - Perhaps the single most compelling aspect of the entire BFG bundle is the fact that the MSRP is identical to that of  'run-of-the-mil' 7800 GTXs. A very close second is the awesome bundle BFG has included with this top-of-the-line card: a lifetime warranty, a full version game and video editing/authoring application, t-shirt, Teflon “Slick Pads” for your mouse, two DVI adapters, a TV adapter, and an HDTV adapter. While some of these items are to be expected with any new video card, BFG really has raised the bar.
  • EVGA GF 7800 GTX - Anandtech has posted a review of the eVGA e-GeForce 7800 GTX card which has its core clocked higher than NVIDIA's reccomended settings at 450 MHz, 20MHz higher than reference clock of 430MHz. The eVGA card was overclocked to 475MHz and 1.25ghz and run through Doom III, Battlefield 2, Half Life 2 at the highest of resolution with 8xAF.
  • MSI's NX7800GTX - The 7800GTX is an impressive GPU, which shows off powerful features, advanced pipelining, and incredible image quality. It automatically enters as the top performer in the desktop graphics market, and it can give many a professional workstation product a serious run for their money, in both image precision and OpenGL performance.
  • Nvidia Quadro FX 3400 - The Quadro FX line also includes high-precision dynamic range, new standards for image quality in addition to rotated grid anti-aliasing, a new anti-aliasing algorithm that enhances the image quality of images and helps with performance when anti-aliasing enabled. In addition to that 256MB of DDR3 memory featured on teh 3400 FX with also two DVI connectors that can be used with dual link allowing a resolution of 3840x2400.
  • Diamond Multimedia XtremeTV PVR600 - The Diamond XtremeTV PVR600 is a nice bundle of hardware and software. With a little work, you can add Personal Video Recorder abilities to your PC, and still maintain a stable system while you pause, rewind and record live TV. The package does not include everything you need, and it requires an additional $100 investment to use all the advertised features with full functionality. If you are building a home theater PC or just want to add TV to your laptop, check out the Diamond XtremeTV PVR600.
  • Western Digital External USB 80Gig Hard Drive - This external hard drive is about double what an internal hard drive would cost, but if you think about the cost and time it would take to burn 80 gigs worth of information to DVD, and you have the ability to delete and rewrite to the hard drive at will and the fact it is portable you will soon realize that the drive is a good value.
  • HP dvd640e DVD Writer - This drive is one of the first drives to support the new LightScribe feature/technique. Further this drive supports 16x DVD+R writing, 8x DVD-R and 2.4x DVD+R9 DL writing technology, allowing double layer discs of 8.5Gb to be written.
  • WRT54G Wireless-G broadband router - The Linksys WRT54G appears to be really packed with many powerful features. You can control when and for how long each PC is given access to the Internet. You can also control the amount of bandwidth allocated to each device or LAN port! If you like, the router can filter out specific websites domains or all websites with certain keywords. This router certainly comes with a lot of features to play with.
  • Samsung SPP-2040 dye-sub printer - Print quality is very good with natural and accurate colours printed without dots. The dye sublimation technique means ink is transferred as a vapour from the backing film to the paper, so you get a 'continuous tone' print, very similar to a classic, silver halide photograph.
    The printer lays three different colours onto the paper: yellow, magenta and cyan in that order, and then it lays a clear transparent layer over the top to protect the printer from light and ozone attack. The cover layer also gives the print an attractive, glossy coating. Even with only three-colour prints, black is well reproduced.
  • Pinnacle Showcenter 200 Brings HD To The Living Room - Pinnacle's new Showcenter 200 brings HD features after "broadcasting" sound, video and photographs around the home. More compact, the 200 also provides a front-mounted USB socket (for connecting a hard disk) and uPnP compatibility.
  • Ricoh 8.2 megapixel camera has fast shutter action - GX8 is a slim and compact 8.2-Megapixel digital camera that commands one of the world's fastest shutter response time, super-close macro mode and a fast start-up time of 1.3 seconds.

GUIDES...

  • Unlock SLI Capability On nForce 4-4x Chipset - Using a conductive pen, grease, and even pencil, short a resistor on the right side of the chipset as shown above will unlock the SLI capability by splitting into two x8. As such, pairing the nForce4-4x board with a dual GPUs card solution like the Gigabyte 3D1 or ASUS EN6800-DUAL, it can run SLI.
  • Cable tidying guide - Are all those IDE, SATA, PSU, HDD, DVD, USB, LCD, PCIE, VGA, DVI, SCART, RF cables getting on your nerves? Want to do something to tidy them up a little? Whether behind your TV or inside your rig, this guide will show you the different types of cable tidying products and what they're good for.
  • Digit-Life's 3Digest for June 2005 - check it out!
  • Mozilla Firefox extensions you should have - This list may introduce you to new extensions, or extensions that you didn't know the purpose of. There are 100's of quality extensions out there, so definitely spend some time looking through them. This list is in alphabetical order, not in order of preference.
  • Catalyst 5.7 comparisons - Catylist roundup can be found on Origo3D (German) and Technic3D (German)

SOFTWARE...

  • PCMark05 review - All in all, there isn't much to be said about PCMark05 that hasn't already been said about PCMark04 - It's a good, solid benchmark which offers a plethora of information to anyone wishing to benchmark either entire systems or certain components or subsections of a system. This new iteration of the benchmark is clearly a case of evolution rather than revolution, and rightly so - If it ain't broke, why fix it?
  • PHP 5.1 Beta 3 - PHP 5.1 Beta 3 is now available! If all goes well, this beta release will be followed by a release candidate within a couple of weeks.
  • AutoPatcher XP July 2005 - AutoPatcher is a comprehensive collection of patches, addons and registry tweaks that give you peace of mind in the knowledge that your Windows system is up to date, even before you connect it to the Internet. It's designed to quickly patch a system with the most current updates and tweaks available, and requires no user interaction once you have selected what to install. This release is based on the all-new AutoPatcher 5.1. Although it was made with Windows XP SP2 English/Portuguese/Norwegian in mind, it will load on any (English/Portuguese/Norwegian) Windows version, showing only the items which match the running environment.
  • Belarc Advisor 7.0r - Free Personal PC Audit - The Belarc Advisor (download) builds a detailed profile of your installed software and hardware, including Microsoft Hotfixes, and displays the results in your Web browser.
  • nLite 1.0 beta 5 - This new beta supports Direct Hotfix Integration and much more,
  • X-Setup Pro 7.1 - X-Setup Pro 7.1 is now available and beside bug fixes and some small improvements, it brings the all new Scripting feature.
  • Unlocker 1.6.6 - This application (download) unlocks in-use files, allowing functions to be performed on theme.
  • Notepad++ 3.1 - Notepad++ (download) is a free source code editor which supports several programming languages running under the MS Windows environment.
  • Win32Pad 1.5.8 - Win32Pad (download) is a feature filled text editor that is written with a programmer in mind. Its main purpose is to provide enough functionality that is missing from notepad without sacrificing file size and performance.
  • SecureCRT 5.0.1 - SecureCRT (changelog / download) gives you an encrypted SSH session with both SSH1 and SSH2™ servers. SSH security goes far beyond the basic secure logon, rerouting data or local applications using TCP/IP ports through an encrypted channel. The VCP utility secures file transfers using SFTP.
  • Portable Firefox 1.05 Beta - Portable Firefox is a fully functional package of Firefox optimized for use on a USB key drive.
  • Thunderbird 1.05 released - Mozilla Thunderbird (release notes / download win32 | linux), the mail client that 'plays nice with the browser', just got the same security and stability updates that its Firefox sibling recently received.
  • Nero Burning Rom 6.6.0.15a - Nero (download ~ mirror1US ~ mirror2US ~ mirror3US) is a flexible, reliable, and easy-to-use application designed to write both data and CD audio to CD-R and CD-RW discs. You can also download new versions for NeroMIX 1.4.0.34a, Nero Media Player 1.4.0.34a and NeroVision Express 3.1.0.14a.
  • Rightmark RAMTester v1.0 beta2 - The program works with just about every kind of mainstream RAM out there (SDR, DDR, RDR), and it's free to download - what are you waiting for? Head over to its homepage, and find out how hard your RAM really is.
Optimus OLED keyboard - tech
(hx) 07:09 AM EDT - Jul,16 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)
Every key of the Optimus keyboard is a stand-alone display showing exactly what it is controlling at this very moment. According to the website, the keyboard is in initial stage of production and should be available in 2006.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,14 2005 - tech
ATI CATALYST Drivers v5.7 - tech
(hx) 04:37 PM EDT - Jul,14 2005 - Post a comment / read (3)
ATI has released a new ATI Catalyst drivers (release notes / download ~ 25.1MB) bringing them up to version 5.7. The package contains: RADEON display driver 8.152, Multimedia Center 9.08, Catalyst Control Center 5.7 (requires .NET Version 1.1 Framework), HydraVision Basic Edition 3.25.9006, Remote Wonder 3.02, WDM version 8.15 (6317) and Southbridge/IXP Driver. They claim 5-15% performance gains in 3DMark05 on some products, 25-60% gains in Half-Life 2 at 1600x1200 4xAA 8xAF, 40-60% gains in UT2004 at 1600x1200 6xAA 16xAF, 20-60% gain in Far Cry Regulator across multiple settings.
Here's a summary of the issues that have been resolved in the latest version of Catalyst. These include:
  • Flight Sim 2004: Launching the application under Windows XP and enabling Anisotropic Filtering (AF) within the Catalyst Control Center no longer results in the AF functionality not being enabled within the game
  • Trackmania Sunrise: Playing the game under Windows XP no longer results in the operating system failing to respond when attempting to exit the game after leaving the PC idle for an extended period of time
  • Warcraft III: Playing the game under Windows XP no longer results in display corruption being noticed when rotating the display 90 degrees counter-clockwise.
  • Creating a custom hot-key for rotation currently no longer results in the custom hot-key to become unavailable for the secondary display device when extended desktop is enabled and the display devices are set to 1280x1024.
  • Changing the format from NTSC to any PAL format no longer results in the PAL format not working.
  • Changing the regional option found in the control panel to Japan followed by installing the display driver no longer results in the TV format failing to change in accordance with the regional option
  • Changes to the Overlay Display in Clone Mode option found in the Theater Mode settings of the Catalyst Control Center are now retained
  • The Scale to full screen option found in the Theater Mode Settings of the Catalyst Control Center is now working properly
  • Rotating the display by 180 degrees no longer results in all the text on the desktop failing to appear
  • Truncated text in the localized French version of the Catalyst Control Center is now resolved
  • The profile manager hotkey notification dialog box is now translated for all supported languages
  • ATI Color Controls can now be reactivated using a hotkey combination if the ATI Color Controls have changed by the color management tool of a third party application
  • The TV is now detected when both the SVIDEO and the Composite connectors are used
  • Windows Movie Maker 2.0: The Movie maker preview playback no longer displays a blank image when attempting to playback an mpeg file
  • Windows Movie Maker 2.0: Attempting to record a TV source for 6 hours or more, no longer results in audio corruption being heard after approximately 4 hours of recording
  • Subtitles are now displayed when playing a DVD under Windows XP Media Center Edition
  • The Catalyst Control Center Hotkey Manager is now completely localized for Japanese
Thursday Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 06:53 AM EDT - Jul,14 2005 - Post a comment

SECURITY...

  • Mozilla patches bugs in Firefox, Thunderbird - The Mozilla Foundation today fixed a number of security bugs in its Firefox Web browser, many of which will also be patched in upcoming releases of Mozilla's Thunderbird e-mail client and Mozilla Internet software suite.
    None of the bugs had been publicly divulged before today, and they are generally not considered to be critical, said Chris Hofmann, director of engineering with The Mozilla Foundation.
  • Flaws could open systems to attack - Two serious security flaws in a technology widely used for network authentication could expose a swath of software products to hacker attack, experts have warned. The flaws could allow an online intruder to crash or gain access to computers running Kerberos, a freely available authentication technology that was developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • Anti Spyware Coalition defines what it is spyware -  A new industry grouping calling itself the Anti Spyware Coalition (ASC) has begun its life with an existential question: What exactly is the spyware that it is anti? It has also come up with definitions for such nasties as 'adware,' 'port scanner,' and 'screen scraper'. It is asking the public for their feedback to the definitions, although submissions need to be in by 12 August.

OFFTOPIC...

  • MMOG romance ends in divorce - For a Mr. Wang of Chongqing, China, it's definitely the latter. He's currently involved in a bitter dispute over ownership of characters and virtual items in Legend of Mir 2 with his soon-to-be ex-wife, Ms. Ye.  According to the Chongqing Business Post, Ye and Wang met online whilst playing the game last September and married four weeks later. Over the following months they jointly opened more than ten LoM2 accounts and attained level 40 to 50 status for all of their characters, before deciding to divorce in June.
  • Majesco Creating Ghost Rider Movie Game - The Hollywood Reporter says that Majesco Entertainment is creating a video game based on Marvel's Ghost Rider for summer 2006, coinciding with the Sony Pictures/Marvel Studios movie starring Nicolas Cage.
  • First Pictures From Comic-Con 2005 - ComingSoon.net/SuperheroHype.com has your first look at the 2005 Comic-Con International in San Diego, taking place Thursday through Sunday, with pictures from the various movie displays on the floor
  • Ebbers jailed for 25 years - Bernie Ebbers has been sentenced to 25 years behind bars for his part in the $11bn (L5.8bn) fraud at US telco WorldCom, accordng to AP.

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Does Intel's compiler cripple AMD performance? - One of the claims in AMD's sensational antitrust complaint against Intel has been getting some play around the web lately. Specifically, folks are focusing on what AMD says about Intel compilers and how they react to the presence of AMD processors.
  • Consumers choose Blu-Ray over HD-DVD - A new survey has revealed that when it comes to next-generation disc formats, consumers are currently favouring Sony's preferred Blu-Ray system, which will be used in the PlayStation 3, over Toshiba's HD-DVD
  • Skype Goes Wireless - Skype International and Boingo Wireless announced a partnership this week that will allow users to access Skype's VoIP (voice over Internet Protocol) technology from 18,000 Wi-Fi hot spots worldwide.
  • IBM Developed New Tracing Keyboard System - IBM has developed Shark (Shorthand-Aided Rapid Keyboarding) ,an advanced pen-based shorthand method that allows users to input words into mobile devices by tracing them letter by letter on a virtual keyboard. Instead of tapping independently on four virtual keys with a stylus to spell "word," for example, consumers would put the stylus on "w" and then carve a continuous trail all the way to "d." "What we are doing is creating a human-machine code," said Shumin Zhai, a research staff member at IBM Almaden Research Center, said during a presentation at the New Paradigms for Using Computers conference in Silicon Valley on Monday.
  • New Way to Make Hydrogen - The process uses sodium which industry shuns because it generates sparks and heat when mixed with water. Signa has devised a way to mix sodium with silica gel or crystalline silicon to create a powder that essentially strips electrons from the sodium molecules in advance and stores them. When water is introduced, the chemical reaction proceeds calmly. The powder generates hydrogen efficiently. More than 9 percent of a kilogram of the powder gets converted to hydrogen and little energy is lost through heat.
  • Mobile Phone Fuel Cells Coming in 2007  - A fuel cell technology that promises a quick fix for dead or dying mobile phone batteries may make its world debut in Japan in 2007, according to representatives of Japan's two biggest mobile communications carriers today at the Wireless Japan 2005 Expo.
  • Xbox 360 GPU to be manufactured by TSMC - The Inquirer is reporting that Taiwanese Semiconductor Manufacturing (TSMC), will take care of R500 production for the Vole. This decision was easy as TSMC is in a much better position with its 90 nanometre yields and production and as we said many times before Microsoft needs millions of those chips as soon as possible.

HARDWARE... 

  • NVIDIA GeForce 7800GT Has 20 Pipes - VR-Zone has learned that the upcoming GeForce 7800 GT will be 20 pipes instead of 24 pipes as intially reported. The vertex shader could probably stay at 8 and ROP at 16. The core clock for 7800GT is 400MHz instead of 335MHz initially thought. It will be interesting to see if the 4 hidden pipes can unlocked on the 7800 GT to become GTX. The 7800GT is slated for launch on 11th Aug at Quakecon 2005 and MRSP for this card is US$449.
  • Matrox announces PCI Express x1 graphics card -  The card is based on Matrox G550 technology and has DualHead support for using 2 digital or analog monitors at a time. The Millennium G550 PCIe will be available in August for $139, which is rather expensive for a card with such a dated graphics core.
  • Nvidia 6600 LE series graphics cards to be priced at US$60-70 - Nvidia will introduce its 6600 LE series SLI (Scalable Link Interface)-supporting graphics processing unit (GPU) in early August, and the FOB (free on board) price of 6600 LE graphics cards is expected to be US$60-70, according to sources at graphics card makers.
  • Dell Inspiron 2200 - The base 2200 features an Intel Celeron Processor at 1.4Ghz, 256MB DDR RAM, 40GB HD, and 14" XGA TFT active-matrix display. All this can be had for $899. An upgrade package that offers a 1.5 Ghz M processor, twice the memory, 20 extra gigs of HD space, and a 15" screen, for just $100 more.
  • AMD's Athlon64 X2 Processors - Performance wise, we are confident in saying that the Athlon64 X2 4800+ is the fastest overall processor on the market today. The vast majority of multi-threaded applications showed the 4800+ at the top of the benchmark charts, and it only falls behind to the Athlon64 FX series in gaming. Even in games, the 4800+ chip is only a small amount behind the FX. The chip is far more balanced compared to the Intel's dual-core Pentium-D/EE processors when handling single threaded applications
  • ULi M1695 PCIe/AGP Socket 939 for Athlon 64 - The new ULi M1695/M1567 chipset is both unique in its full-blown AGP support on a PCIe board and fully competitive in performance with the best Athlon 64 solutions currently available. PCIe performance could use a bit more tuning, but it is already competitive. If ULi can bring PCIe performance to the levels that they currently enjoy with AGP on this same board, this could well be the fastest Athlon 64 chipset that you can buy. We could wish for SATA 2 support and integrated Gigabit LAN, but even those are coming with the M1575 South Bridge slated for September/October production. 
  • ASUS P5LD2 Deluxe motherboard - There is virtually no difference between the layout and design of the P5WD2 Premium and P5LD2 Deluxe motherboards. The P5WD2 Premium is of course more expensive as it does utilize the 955X chipset. The only other noticeable difference other than this is that the P5LD2 Deluxe only features a single Gigabit LAN controller. The P5WD2 Premium was a superb overclocker and if the P5LD2 Deluxe can match or better the overclocking performance it is going to be a serious product.
  • ATI All-In-Wonder Radeon X800 XL for PCI E - The ATI All-In-Wonder Radeon X800 XL for PCI Express differs from the AGP version in only a couple of areas physically. Firstly, a Microtune MT2121 silicon tuner sits under the gold-coloured cover. The MT21xx series is a pin-compatible evolution of the MT20xx series, with the biggest difference being the ability to tune DVB-T digital television broadcasts.
  • Wacom Intuos3 6x8 graphic tablet - The original Intuos was a great product no doubt. With the introduction of the Intuos3, Wacom has taken user suggestions and built upon that. The improved resolution of the product was apparant especially in programs such a Photoshop which could take full advantage of the 1024 levels of pressure sensitivity. it's hard to describe the impact of the increased resolution, but I'd have to say that it was characterized by an even greater level of smoothness.
  • iRiver T10 Series Photo-Video-MP3 Player - This photo/video/audio player supports MP3, WMA, ASF, OGG, MPEG 1, 2, 2.5 and BMP formats.

GUIDES...

  • MD Athlon FX-57 Overclocking - 3.54GHz with Phase Change - The Athlon 64 FX-57 is an overclocker's dream chip. Unlike regular Athlon 64 processors, it is totally unlocked. This means that the lower as well as the higher range multipliers are available.
  • Peter Nordahl's NT Password and Registry Editor Boot Disk - This great tool will help you to recover NT system from administrator password loss. This utility allows to (re)set the password of any user that has a valid account on your NT system.

SOFTWARE...

  • G70 demo's available for download - GeForce 7 series is an improvement over the GeForce 6-series in terms of capabilities - we're still on DirectX 9.0c, Shader Model 3.0-based hardware, so there are no shader-based improvements, meaning that it will run on GeForce 6 video cards. For those of you who don't have a GeForce 6-series of GeForce 7800 GTX video card, you will be able to watch the demo's in Windows Media Player. There are two demo's: Luna (demo | movie) and Mad Mod Mike (demo | movie).
  • MAME v0.98 - MAME stands for Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator  and currently runs 1800+ classic (and even some not so classic) arcade games.
  • Macromedia Flash Player 8.0 Beta - This Public Beta is a pre-release version of the next major release of Flash Player.
  • AIM v5.9.3828 Beta - AOL instant Messenger (download) service is a free online service that lets you communicate with family, friends and co-workers in real time. Using the AIM Buddy List feature you can see when your buddies are online and available to instant message.
  • UPnPScanner - Scan Your Network For UPnP Capable Devices - UPnPScanner scans the LAN or a given address range for UPnP capable devices. This is done by sending M-SEARCH discovery packets to either the UPnP multicast address or to the specified ip range.
  • Sysinternals PageDefrag 2.32 - PageDefrag (download) uses advanced techniques to provide you what commercial defragmenters cannot: the ability for you to see how fragmented your paging files and Registry hives are, and to defragment them. In addition, it defragments event log files and Windows 2000/XP hibernation files (where system memory is saved when you hibernate a laptop).
  • MozBackup 1.4.1 - MozBackup (download) is a utility for creating backups of Mozilla, Mozilla Firefox, Mozilla Thunderbird and Netscape profiles. It allows you to backup mail, favorites, contacts, etc.
  • RightMark RAMTester Utility 1.0 Beta 2 - The RAMTester tool (download) that is meant for checking memory modules reliability under MS Windows (x86 and x64) on the example of virtual addresses. The idea of this utility is writing bit patterns into memory and then reading and comparing them with reference.
  • Browser Hijack Retaliator 3 - Real time protection for your Internet Explorer (IE) all Default pages, BHO's, Favorites etc. 'Browser Restore' operation allows you to reset your IE to default settings while 'Startup Manager' allows you to eliminate suspicious Programs form startup.
  • AnyDVD to version 5.2.3.1. - This version is able to bypass the latest Sony ARccOS protection which has made it difficult for many to make legitmate backups of their DVDs. AnyDVD is a Windows driver which unprotects encrypted movie DVDs automatically in the background and is also able to remove Macrovision and Region protection
  • nVidia BIOS Modifier v1.1 - This tool (NBM) is intended for modification of BIOSes of nVidia 6x00 and 7x00 cards ONLY.
  • Intel Chipset Installation Utility 7.2.1.1003 - The Intel Chipset Software Installation Utility (release notes) installs to the target system the Windows* INF files that outline to the operating system how the chipset components will be configured. This release adds Intel 955X Express Chipset & Intel 6300ESB Chipset support.
  • Realtek AC'97 Drivers 3.74 WHQL - This driver (download) supports all ALC series audio chipsets from ALC101 up to ALC861. It is used as onboard sound on many motherboards. Chips covered include ALC101/201/202/203/250/650/653/655/658/861.
  • DNA-Force 1.8.8040 (ForceWare) - These are modified NVIDIA ForceWare drivers for Windows 2000 & XP. Modified drivers simply means that the author takes official or beta drivers from the manufacturer and starts to tweak them for either better image quality and or performance.
  • DNA-ATi 4.0.5.6 Full - These are modified/hacked ATI Catalyst drivers, use them at your own risk. The drivers have been optimized with two things in mind, better Image Quality and more/stable frames per second when compared to the Beta Catalyst drivers from ATI.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,12 2005 - tech
Nightly Tech Madness - tech
(hx) 09:43 PM EDT - Jul,12 2005 - Post a comment / read (1)
Yesterday morning (Monday), I became extraordinarily upset when my DSL broadband service (wireless) - after 5 months of relatively continuous operation - went off at around 8:00AM and stayed off. Usually these interruptions ended in about an hour. But I was wrong :] Actually I was without DSL service for almost 32 hours! Needless to say I was pretty nervous since the guy (a technician) spent whole day in my office fixing the problem. Fortunately, they repaired it today's afternoon - finally!

SECURITY...

  • [MS patches - July 2005] Vulnerability in Microsoft Word Could Allow Remote Code Execution (903672) (critical) - A vulnerability exists in Word that could allow an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerable to take complete control of the affected system.
  • [MS patches - July 2005] Vulnerability in Microsoft Color Management Module Could Allow Remote Code Execution (901214) (critical) - A vulnerability exists in the Microsoft Color Management Module that could allow an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerable to take complete control of the affected system.
  • [MS patches - July 2005] Vulnerability in JView Profiler Could Allow Remote Code Execution (903235)  (critical) - A vulnerability exists in JView Profiler that could allow an attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerable to take complete control of the affected system.

  • zlib Buffer Overflow Vulnerability - By creating a specially crafted compressed data stream, attackers can overwrite data structures for application that uses zlib. The result may cause the application to perform a denial of service by crashing, and may also allow attackers to execute arbitrary code. For more details check out this article at eWeek
  • Longhorn following Unix on security? - Microsoft's delayed Longhorn operating system appears to be taking a page from the Unix management book by curbing user's administration rights.
  • Microsoft denies its antispyware favors Claria - The beta version of Microsoft AntiSpyware previously recommended that users quarantine several products from Claria, but this changed last week. According to a statement published by Microsoft, the downgrade in threat level merely represents an effort to be "fair and consistent with how Windows AntiSpyware (Beta) handles similar software from other vendors."
  • Dutch file-swapper case collapses - The Dutch Protection Rights Entertainment Industry Netherlands (BREIN) has lost its case against five Dutch ISPs who refused to hand over the names of 42 suspected song swappers. BREIN knew these individuals only by their IP address. The court ruled that BREIN made a crucial mistake in collecting evidence against the individuals. BREIN hired US company Media Sentry, which monitors popular online forums and P2P services for copyright infringement and tracks unauthorised online distribution. Apparently the company only looked at shared folders of Kazaa, but these folders may also have contained files for personal use, the court argues. There is not enough proof that these particular files were uploaded.

OFFTOPIC...

  • In the Beginning There was DOS: A History of Windows NT - Microsoft first previewed NT in early 1992 to several developers, and they were enthusiastic about the product. It used the standard Windows 3.1 Program Manager, making it very easy to use (or at least as easy to use as Windows 3.1). NT also included support for most Windows applications and text based OS/2 applications. NT also had a DOS virtual machine (or an emulator for non x86 machines) so it could run DOS applications as well.
  • GTA sex scandal expands - The Australian Censor is examining whether Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas contains graphic sexual content. The Office of Film and Literature Classification is planning a thrusting examination into claims that the game's content reportedly becomes sexually explicit if players download and install a mod. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, if the claims were true, then the game would be banned.
  • Harry Potter's 'Half Blood Prince' Leaked - The Canadian publisher of the Harry Potter series has filed a court injunction barring anyone from leaking the plot of the latest book after a store accidentally sold copies ahead of the release date. Raincoast Books of Vancouver discovered last Friday that Real Canadian Superstore in Coquitlam, B.C. had sold 15 copies of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. So on Saturday, it sought the injunction from the province's Supreme Court.

TECHNOLOGY...

HARDWARE... 

  • IBM preparing to build ATI R500 for Xbox 360  - ATI would have had to help Microsoft with tape outs and with design tweaking, as those guys at ATI designed the R500 Xbox 360 GPU. But developers are now getting the "Real" hardware still based on G5 MACs but this time with real R500 graphic cards inside. This means that R500 chip is taped out and that it is working but we don’t know whether this is the final chip that Microsoft plans to ship at later date.
  • ULi Fights Back - M1695 Athlon 64 Chipset - TweakTown take a look at the ULi M1695 chipset, fresh from the Computex 2005 floor in Taiwan. We have received this reference sample direct from ULi for some extensive tests and we will pit it against the VIA K8T890 and nVidia nForce 4 Ultra to see just how well this baby can perform against its established competitors.
  • AOpen OpenBook (BareBook) 1559-JL Mobile Barebone System - As for disadvantages, the OpenBook isn't the best solution in terms of mobility, having a weight of about 3kg and a relatively small time of autonomous operation. The number of USB 2.0 ports is insufficient, infrared and Bluetooth interfaces are missing. The quality of the built-in audio subsystem is rather low, and the Audio DJ technology is practically useless.
  • Crucial Ballistix PC2-5300 2GB Dual Channel memory - They probably have the best value and most future proof DDR2 kit for the moment, the BL2KIT12864AA664 kit, which consists of two 1GB Ballistix PC2-5300 modules. 2GB of RAM should be enough to last for years to come for most people and the performance is supposed to be enough for many generations of CPUs to come.
  • Corsair 5400UL DDR-2 675MHz Memory - Corsair's 5400UL memory is quite quick and when you start to fine tune the memory on a motherboard which it is designed for, such as the Gigabyte 8N-SLI Royal, you do begin to see performance increases in games such as Half Life 2 and Doom 3. Even though the performance increases are small, every bit of performance counts.
  • Corsair XMS2 DDR2-1000 Memory - With timings of 3.0-3-3-8 at DDR2-667 speed, this module will be an excellent choice for users demanding best performance at stock speeds. Lastly, people wanting to invest in a module that will probably survive the growing memory multipliers for the rest of this year and probably next year will also be satisfied
  • Mushkin 1GB Dual Channel PC3200 'Redline' DDR Memory - One item of note is for those who may have an OEM system and are looking for a memory upgrade. In this case I would not recommend this kit as it is unlikely you will have the option of raising the VDIMM to a level where these modules will work well. At the standard VDIMM setting of only 2.5v, this memory kit offered no stability even at 200MHz speeds. As long as you can keep voltage levels at a minimum of 2.7v you'll do fine, but the higher the better for these babies.
  • OCZ EL PC-3500 Gold Gamer Extreme Ed. Memory - All in all if you're a gamer in the market for some memory upgrades you can't really go wrong with picking up a couple sticks of the OCZ PC-3500 Gold GX under $200. Overclocking seems to be lagging behind a bit, but this RAM is fast enough for most right out of the box, so you won't need to deal with the hassle
  • OCZ PC4800 Dual Channel Platinum Limited Edition Memory - Retailing for $330 CDN ($265 US), the OCZ PC4800 DC Platinum LTD Ed kit represents the fastest memory you can buy right now without having to use insane voltages. With a default clock speed of 300 MHz (2.5-4-4-10 timings) and a voltage of 2.85V, there simply isn't anything faster on the market at this moment.
  • ECS KN1 Extreme - In the end, the ECS KN1 Extreme feels like a product unsure of its place in the market. It offers more than what you'd expect from the average board at a price that you just can't beat
  • PowerColor RADEON X800 XL 512MB - The second reason why PowerColor's card is worthy of consideration lies with the care and attention paid to cooling and quietness. ATI's had the X800 XL GPU fabbed on a 110nm low-k manufacturing process. The XL's 400MHz core speed is slow enough (read cool enough) for a card partner to introduce a quieter cooling solution. Another review can be found on Bjord3D.
  • HIS Excalibur ATI Radeon X850XT PE IceQ II Dual DVI VIVO 256MB PCIe Video Card - The review would not be complete without mentioning ATI Crossfire Technology which this card supports, in a nutshell what it is is the answer to nVidias SLI project but the Crossfire solution in my opinion has a better overall plan than nVida does. By taking the X850XT video card and installing it in one of ATI's soon to be released motherboard you will be able to pair it with another X800 or X850 to have your very own SLI system.
  • ATI Radeon X700 Monster Graphics Card Roundup - TweakTown has compared 11 Radeon X700 cards from 8 different companies including ATI, GeCube, PowerColor, HIS, MSI, Sapphire, Gigabyte and ASUS.
  • EVGA 6800 PCIe 256MB Video Card - EVGA's 6800 PCIe is a latest addition to its product line. While making the switch from AGP to PCIe, EVGA has added an additional 128MB of memory to the graphics board, making the total to 256MB. The company has also changed the clock speeds on the memory from 700MHz to 600MHz, a reduction of 16.6 percent in overall clock speed. Logically, this has also dropped the overall available memory bandwidth from 22.4GB/s to 19.2GB/s.
  • Coolmax CXI-500B 500W PSU -  One area that makes the 500B power supply a very viable option for your next power supply is the fact that is will support not one but two PCI-E video cards so there is no need to go out and try to find those hard to find power cables.
  • Koolance Aquian ICM-505+CPU Liquid Cooling System - The Aquian ICM-505+CPU is an all-in-one liquid cooling system designed to provide quick and easy installation inside your favorite case.
  • Seagate First Generation 2.5" 10K Enterprise Savvio Hard Drive - The Savvio 10k.1 performs great when compared to the 10k.7, it's smaller size is more than made up in it's spunk, showing no significant decrease in performance in more real-world benchmarks.
  • DVDR 16x Summer Roundup - The chaps over at AnandTech have taken 6 units from 6 different manufacturers and tested two brands of media on them, including DVD+/-R, RW, +/-R DL, and CDR. The drives are BenQ's DW1640, LG's GSA-4163B, NEC's ND-3540A, Pioneer's DVR-109D, Sony's DRU-720A with updated firmware, and Toshiba's SD-R5372.
  • PipeCall ADSL Integrated Router - The PipeCall ADSL Integrated Router boxed solution brings together a Billion BiPAC 7402VGP router and a deal with Pipemedia that offers one month of free use of its service. Note that although the call set up charge of L14.99 is waived, you still have to sign up for a minimum of three months.
  • Silex SX-2000U2 USB Device Server - Finally - a High-Speed USB sharing solution is available; though, a few glitches maybe the reason to hold off buying until the next driver update.
  • Wolf Claw FPS Gaming Keyboard - Considering that this keyboard has the extra key set in place of the numerical key set but switched over to the left, the keyboard is still small and compact. The Wolf Claw is in a minority due to it being slightly bigger than your average keyboard, about 5cm wider in total. Importing your goods in the car and setting up a LAN event won't be a problem because of the size.
  • Raptor-Gaming M2 2400dpi Gaming Mouse - On one hand, we have a lot of nice innovation - the weight system and the 2400dpi resolution. On the other, we have sub par tracking, occasional delays, and a poor dpi-switching mechanism.
  • Flexiglow Cyber Snipa PC Gamepad -  Acting as a mini keyboard, with particular emphasis on first-person shooter gaming, a week of solid and extensive playing has moved it from a position of "interesting idea" to a place of "essential requirement" in my FPS play
  • HP Photosmart R717 6.2megapixel Digital Camera - Although from the outside it doesn't look much different to many of the other compact digital cameras on the market, the R717 is packed with advanced technology designed to help you take better pictures. Considering the price tag of just L175, there's more going on behind its sleek brushed steel face than many cameras costing twice as much.
  • Canon Digital Rebel XT Digital Camera -  Although you can still purchase the Rebel for $799 with a lens, we strongly urge you to spend the extra money for the XT ($999 with the lens). Not only is picture quality improved, thanks to new circuitry dubbed DIGIC II by Canon, but the D-SLR operates much faster and the battery lasts longer. Response time is almost instantaneous from the time you focus to saving the image to the card.
  • Samsung YP-MT6X MP3 Player: With 512MB Memory - Samsung's YP-MT6X is the exact same player as the company's YP-MT6V as far as the specifications and features are concerned. The only thing different about this particular model is that it supports 512MB of memory onboard with a different exterior color.

GUIDES...

  • How to Keep Your Computer Cool - ExtremeTech is featuring a how-to article on keeping your computer cool by adopting an efficient airflow strategy for your PC case.
  • Linux battle of the high-end CPUs - This also goes for those that run specific single-threaded applications and don't do much multi-taking. If you're in this category, then you can either chose top-notch or middle priced, the Athlon 64 FX-57 or Athlon 64 4000+. The Intel processors at this time don't really have a place in this category due to their poor relative performance.
  • How to Manually Clean Your VCR Heads - A step-by-step guide on how to clean your VCR heads to get a better image quality.
  • Analysis of a win32 Userland Rootkit - This paper describes how to build a windows user land rootkit from scratch..
  • 25 keyboard shortcuts for moving faster in Windows XP -  Here are 30 useful keyboard shortcuts that can help you navigate Windows XP faster than ever.
  • 50 Indispensable Microsoft Word tips - Looking for a list of Microsoft Word tips and tricks for your end users? The editors at TechRepublic have put together a collection of their favorite timesavers for using Word 97, 2000, 2002 (Office XP), and 2003. Even the most experienced users will benefit from this list which contains tips on recording Word macros, selecting noncontiguous text, using AutoCorrect to expand text, creating styles, creating document shortcuts, and much more.

SOFTWARE...

  • July 2005 Update for Outlook 2003 Junk Email Filter (KB895658) - This update provides the Junk E-mail Filter in Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 with a more current definition of which e-mail messages should be considered junk e-mail. This update was released in July 2005.
  • Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool 1.6 (KB890830) - The Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool checks Windows XP, Windows 2000, and Windows Server 2003 computers for and helps remove infections by specific, prevalent malicious software—including Blaster, Sasser, and Mydoom.
  • Mac OS X 10.4.2 Update Available - Today Apple released its update to Mac OS X, bringing it up to version 10.4.2.
  • PHP 4.4.0 Final - The PHP Development Team has released PHP 5.0.4 and 4.3.11 (download) These are maintenance releases that in addition to non-critical bug fixes address several security issues. All Users of PHP are strongly encouraged to upgrade to one of these releases as soon as possible.
  • HostsMan 2.0.1 - HostsMan is a freeware application that lets you manage your Hosts file with ease.
  • CCleaner 1.21.130 - CCleaner is a freeware system optimization and privacy tool. It removes unused files from your system - allowing Windows to run faster and freeing up valuable hard disk space.
  • MetaProducts Download Express 1.8 Build 331 - MetaProducts Download Express (download) is a Windows 95/98/NT/2000/ME/XP/2003 program that allows you to download individual files from the Web and FTP sites at the maximum possible speed.
  • Thunderbird 1.1 Alpha 2 Release Candidate - An Alpha 2 release candidate is now available for testing.
  • VirtualDub 1.6.9 - This minor update (download) fixes nasty bugs that were found since 1.6.8; most are minor except the audio compression error bug.
  • PlexTools Professional Update V2.24  - PlexTools Professional software allows you to control powerful functions with an easy-to-use interface
  • Realtek AC'97 Audio CODECs A3.74 - download
Uber-high-resolution gaming on today's GPUs - tech
(hx) 06:21 AM EDT - Jul,12 2005 - Post a comment
TechReport has posted an article called "Uber-high-resolution gaming on today's GPUs". Here's an excerpt:
So that's what the performance picture looks like at uber-high resolution with today's most outrageously expensive graphics cards. At the end of the day, performance at 2048x1536 isn't really a good indicator of relative rendering power or likely performance in future games, but it is a very interesting special case. For what it's worth, it seems to me that the Radeon X850 XT PE scales up a little more gracefully than the GeForce 6800 Ultra most of the time, although neither card handles uber-res modes as well as the 7800 GTX. The GeForce 6800 Ultra SLI rig, in particular, suffers mightily at three megapixels, so that you're almost better off with a single 7800 GTX.

One dynamic that we haven't mentioned yet is video card memory. We've had a really difficult time finding a situation where a 512MB graphics card makes much sense. I expect that could change once we subject a 512MB card to the rigors of our new 22" paperweight from hell. It takes quite a bit of RAM to store all of the data needed for rendering at 2048x1536. A screenshot of a single frame alone is roughly 9MB uncompressed. The question is: can a graphics card with a GeForce 6800 or Radeon 800-series GPU really take advantage of that extra memory at high res given their respective two-megapixel limits? Maybe, maybe not. This may be one reason why ATI and NVIDIA have been reluctant to promote 512MB versions of their cards aggressively.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,11 2005 - tech
Athlon 64 Revision E: Unofficial DDR500 Support - tech
(hx) 03:24 PM EDT - Jul,11 2005 - Post a comment
The chaps over at AnandTech take a look at the unofficial support for higher memory clock speeds that AMD has built into its newer revision-E K8 cores, including the those in the Athlon 64 X2, Venice-core chips, and the FX-57. AMD obviously didn't speak much about support for these higher speed DRAM options, mainly because they are not official specs, and thus, AMD doesn't officially support them. But, the fact of the matter is that many folks have faster-than-DDR400 memory, and the new Rev E CPUs can now take advantage of that. Here's an excerpt:
The performance improvements themselves aren't tangible, but if you are trying to squeeze every last ounce of performance out of your system, then these new memory dividers offer you one more avenue to do so. If you have memory that can run at higher than DDR400 speeds without any reduction in latency, then by all means, explore the new dividers; just don't expect them to change your life.

The one exception to the rule seems to be heavy multitasking scenarios. As we saw from our simple DVDShrink + Doom 3 test, when you run two very memory bandwidth dependent applications on a dual core processor at the same time, the benefits of these faster memory speeds really starts to show itself. We measured a 6.5% increase in performance in the aforementioned test, but next to no performance improvement in other lighter multitasking scenarios. As we continue to develop our multitasking benchmark suites, we will now start looking at how added memory bandwidth, made possible through these new dividers, changes the performance picture.
Nvidia's David Kirk on PS3 and the future of PC - tech
(hx) 11:54 AM EDT - Jul,11 2005 - Post a comment / read (3)
Bit-Tech has posted an interview with the Chief Scientist of graphics firm Nvidia, David Kirk (they guy behind the RSX graphics chip in the PS3 and the latest GeForce 7800 graphics chip) talking about the upcoming console war and on what the next big thing in PC gaming graphics is going to be. Here's a taster:
Using AA with HDR

For those of you with super-duper graphics cards, you will have come across a problem: you can't use Anti-Aliasing when using HDR lighting, for example in Far Cry. In these cases, it's a situation where you have to choose one or the other. Why is this, and when is the problem going to get solved?

"OK, so the problem is this. With a conventional rendering pipeline, you render straight into the final buffer - so the whole scene is rendered straight into the frame buffer and you can apply the AA to the scene right there."

"But with HDR, you render individual components from a scene and then composite them into a final buffer. It's more like the way films work, where objects on the screen are rendered separately and then composited together. Because they're rendered separately, it's hard to apply FSAA (note the full-screen prefix, not composited-image AA! -Ed) So traditional AA doesn't make sense here."

So if it can't be done in existing hardware, why not create a new hardware feature of the graphics card that will do both?

"It would be expensive for us to try and do it in hardware, and it wouldn't really make sense - it doesn't make sense, going into the future, for us to keep applying AA at the hardware level. What will happen is that as games are created for HDR, AA will be done in-engine according to the specification of the developer.

"Maybe at some point, that process will be accelerated in hardware, but that's not in the immediate future."

But if the problem is the size of the frame buffer, wouldn't the new range of 512MB cards help this?

"With more frame buffer size, yes, you could possibly get closer. But you're talking more like 2GB than 512MB."

 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,09 2005 - tech
Wednesday Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 08:49 AM EDT - Jul,09 2005 - Post a comment

SECURITY...

  • Windows and Office patches ahead - Microsoft has announced in a security bulletin on its website that it expects to release three software patches on Tuesday 12 July.
  • Apache Request Smuggling Vulnerability -All versions of Apache previous to 2.1.6 are vulnerable to a HTTP request smuggling attack which can allow malicious piggybacking of false HTTP requests hidden within valid content. This method of HTTP Request Smuggling was first discussed by Watchfire some time ago. The issue has been addressed by an update to version 2.1.6.
  • Microsoft to Pay Reward to Sasser Worm Informants, author sentenced - Microsoft Corp. today announced that two individuals who helped indentify the creator of the notorious Sasser Worm in 2004 will share a reward of $250,000 (U.S.). The author of the worm, arrested in May 2004, was found guilty Friday by a court in Verden, Germany, and handed a sentence of one year and nine months on probation and 200 hours of community service.
  • 'Spam report' Trojan spreading fast - The emails claim to be from a member of the recipient's IT team warning that their system has been compromised and is distributing spam. The emails, which carry the subject line 'Spam Report', were first detected at 3.25am yesterday. The attachment, which contains Trojan-Downloader.Win32.Small.arf, is a small executable report.log.exe file of 16KB size. If executed it downloads harmful content from an external website.
  • VXers release 'London bombing' Trojan - Virus writers have created a Trojan which poses as London terrorist attack news footage. Infected emails harbouring the Trojan pose as a CNN Newsletter which asks recipients to 'See attachments for unique amateur video shots' (example below). If executed, the malicious attachment turns infected Windows PCs into spam zombies. The as-yet unnamed Trojan attempts to obtain a list of SMTP servers that the victim's machine is configured to use and starts to use these servers to send large volumes of unsolicited mail.
  • Exchange 2003 Service Pack 2 (SP2) Remote Wipe functionality - Remote Wipe is a new feature in E2K3 SP2 that will enable the Exchange admins to force a device to delete its contents remotely. This can come in very handy when an end user loses their device or if the device is stolen -- and there is a risk that someone could access personal or confidential data.
  • Mozilla Platform's Code Execution Vulnerabilities (Exploit) - Several vulnerabilities were identified in Mozilla Suite, Firefox and Thunderbird that may be exploited by attackers to execute arbitrary commands or bypass certain security features
  • Microsoft Downgrades Claria Adware Detections - Microsoft's Windows AntiSpyware application is no longer flagging adware products from Claria Corp. as a threat to PC users. Less than a week after published reports of acquisition talks between Microsoft Corp. and the Redwood City, Calif.-based distributor of the controversial Gator ad-serving software, security researchers have discovered that Microsoft has quietly downgraded its Claria detections. Is this a surprise to anyone? ;)

OFFTOPIC...

  • Two 'Fantastic Four' reviews - ComingSoon.net has posted two Fantastic Four reviews, which you can read here.
  • Aeon Flux Movie Updates - Paramount Pictures has updated the official website for Charlize Theron sci-fi actioner Aeon Flux, set to hit theaters later this year. At the site, you can get a first peek at the upcoming comic book adaptation from Dark Horse Comics, a new video clip (shown after you click on 'Gallery') featuring Theron and Sophie Okonedo (who plays Sithandra) and a photo gallery with 33 images from the anticipated film. (thanks Superheroes.com)
  • Aliens v. Predator 2, Alien 5 Likely - Another great video interview over at IESB. This time it's a Fox exec, Tom Rothman, who confirms a lot of rumors about the Alien series. Apparantly a sequel to Aliens v. Predator is already in the works for a 2007 release. (thanks EvilAvatar)
  • Images from phones add to London attacks coverage - Mobile phones transformed victims into journalists after the transport attacks in London as amateur photographs and video footage played a key role in newspaper, television and Internet coverage.
  • Data Flows from Deep Space Comet Collision - Mission scientists said they expect to be busy for years analyzing data from the impact and the resulting plume of debris. They said frozen carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide and radioactive materials from inside the comet could blow gas into space from the crater "for a long time.
  • China Plans Deep Impact Mission - China is planning its own Deep Impact mission. The goal of the mission, unlike the exploratory NASA project, is to push potential life-ending comets or asteroids away from a collision course with the earth

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Yahoo Expands Mobile Search Options - Yahoo short message service (SMS) Search users can send a text message that includes the shortcut term and a parameter such as a zip code, address or ticker symbol. Available shortcuts are: local information, WiFi hotspot finder, weather, stock quotes, daily horoscopes, dictionary definitions, and zip and area code lookup. They'll receive a text message with the results in reply. The SMS response from will include a URL linking to Yahoo's mobile Internet search if more information is needed.
  • Google Invests in Power-Line Broadband - Current Communications Group, which offers broadband Internet service over power lines, said Thursday that it has received investment money from Google, Hearst and Goldman Sachs. Although Current did not specify the amount it received from the search king, the media giant and the investment banker, The Wall Street Journal reported that the three companies have invested roughly $100 million in the start-up
  • EU considers helping online music providers - The European Commission is looking into ways of helping stimulate the sales of online music from Europe-based providers. Providers currently spend an average of L300,000 per song to acquire licences for all 25 states. This makes break-even achievable after the sale of around 4.7 million songs
  • Microsoft Readies Disk-Based Recovery System - Microsoft has completed production of its disk-based data backup and recovery system and will release the product to manufacturing in the next 30 days, says Ben Matheson, group product manager for DPM at Microsoft. The vendor also has set the pricing for the product at $950 for one DPM server and the ability to protect three other file servers.
  • Longhorn To Ship In Fall 2006 - Microsoft plans to ship its next version of Windows, code-named Longhorn, in the fall of 2006, but executives acknowledged that it could slip into the following year. In related news, the Office 12 Beta 1 is still due this fall. Final product is on target for the latter half of 2006, Capossela said.
  • Sony Facing Increasing Threat of PSP Piracy - Hackers have now figured out how to run PSP games downloaded from pirate websites on their PSP memory sticks. The exploit only works with the original 1.5 version firmware that the PSP shipped with in the U.S., but as larger capacity memory sticks begin to hit the market and more pirate sites pop up on the web, Sony could be in for the same kind of battle that Nintendo has had to deal with for its GBA.
  • Toshiba announces a few more details on its HD DVD players -The most interesting thing for people buying TVs at the moment is that Toshiba have stated that their HD-DVD Player will ONLY output high Def on the player's HDMI output (plus other digital connections) the analogue output will be downrezed to 480 lines (in the US - expect the equivalent, no doubt, in Europe). The Toshiba player will also have a USB interface to allow connection to computers for enhanced content and interactive options direct off the disk. In addition mastering of the underlying DVD content will be based on 1080p - but there was no discussion on the resolution of the MPEG4 images.

HARDWARE... 

  • IBM launches dual-core PowerPC 970 chip - IBM has launched a dual-core version of its 64-bit PowerPC 970 (G5) chip at a "Power Everywhere" event in Tokyo. The dual-core 970MP has 1MB of L2 cache for each core, and clocks from 1.4 to 2.5 GHz.
  • Creative Sound To Boost UT2004 Frames? - An article on HarwareZone reveals Creative's assertion that their new X-FI Xtreme Fidelity audio processor will give a significant boost to frames per second of titles like Unreal Tournament 2004.
  • G70 has 'many' clocks - Nvidia - Nvidia's Chief Scientist, David Kirk has suggested that "People just don't know as much as they think they do" when it comes down to the "Many" clocks within the GeForce 7800, aka G70. In a statement on Beyond 3D forums, Unwinder, the name behind RivaTuner, aired some scepticism surrounding Kirk's response to our understanding that there were only three clock domains inside G70. Kirk formulated a cryptic reply stating that we were making the assumption that there were only three clocks across the 300-million transistor GPU.
  • XDR2 to be 5 times faster than GDDR3 - In a statement made by memory developer RAMBUS, the company claimed that their newly released XDR2 memory is five times faster than today's fastest GDDR DRAM chips, as currently used on all high-end graphics solutions. The company says that their new RAMBUS XDR2 technology makes use of a micro-threaded DRAM core among other circuit enhancements that allows them to deliver data rates at a healthy 8GHz. The graphics memory used on the upcoming Playstation 3 is XDR1, running at a modest 4.8GHz, which will deliver bandwidth approaching 50GB/sec according to RAMBUS' Senior Principle Engineer, Steven Woo.
  • Alienware now doing 64bit - Alienware has announced the availability of the new Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 operating system on its Alienware MJ-12 7550a workstation. Powered by Windows x64, MJ-12 7550a workstations offer faster performance and greater reliability while delivering a migration to 64-bit applications.
  • ASUS W2V 17inch Widescreen Notebook - Powered with the latest Intel 915PM chipset, with a Intel mobile 770 processor (90nm) clocked at 2,13GHz, and dual channel DDRII 533MHz 1GB memory, along with an ATI X700 GPU, the W2V provides good good 3D performance and great desktop stability. Worship the pictures.
  • Sempron 3100+ - Palermo Core - We were able to reach nearly 2.4GHz with default voltages, or almost a 33% overclock. Yes, that is a nice looking overclock without too much effort put into it. There is a chance that some of these Palermo cores could have 3GHz coaxed out of them with a bit of luck, and a better overclocking setup. Clearly with a price tag of just over one hundred dollars, and now with the 64 bit support that Sempron has been missing for so long this becomes an attractive CPU to the budget overclocker. The only downside is the comparatively short life of Socket 754 compared to 939. That being said Socket A Semprons are still available.
  • Corsair XMS TWIN2X1024A 8000UL Memory  - These new modules not only have the ability to operate at 1000MHz, but they also do it with reasonably good DDR2 timings of CAS5-4-4-9. These modules are guaranteed to be able to operate at 1000MHz, but you might be wondering how the hell you do it with a 1:1 ratio with the CPU’s font side bus.
  • nForce4 Ultra Roundup: Charting the Mainstream - If you looking to save even more money, the 9NPA, based on the nForce4 x4 chipset, has a street price of around $90. You give up the SATA 2 support and 1000 bus, but most of the performance features are still available in the same basic motherboard.
  • Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition AGP - In our benchmarks Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition was faster than its main competitor, GeForce 6800 Ultra, in almost all tests. nVidia advantage was basically on X2 - The Threat and Doom III when we increased the image quality. So, we can really consider Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition as the fastest video card for AGP platform - since there is no GeForce 7800 GTX for AGP bus.
  • 6600GT with Dual-BIOS from Galaxy - Galaxy's GeForce 6600 GT Smart Flash is an interesting concept, but one that doesn't work quite as well as it should do. The buzzer alarm is supposed to turn on when the core reaches a temperature of 70 degrees C - we heated our test lab up, overclocked the video card and then fired Half-Life 2 up while monitoring the core temperature. We achieved a temperature of 71'C as reported by the BIOS and did not hear the buzzer alarm sound.
  • ASUS Extreme N6800GT - Under the heatsink you get 256 Megabytes of GDDR3 memory running at 1050 MHz, and the Geforce 6800 GT core, clocked at 367 MHz. The reference specifications for the 6800 GT are 350 MHz core and 1000 MHz memory, so we can see that Asus pushed those up just a little bit to earn this card the Extreme title.
  • Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor - TrustedReviews posted a review of the Audigy 2 ZS Video Editor: "The whole box connects to your PC via USB, so it's rather ironic that the front of the device sports a Firewire connection. Having this though could be useful if your PC doesn't already have a Firewire port. However, a better justification for this product would be for digitising and compressing analogue video footage.  Like other Audigy cards, the back of the device has three stereo line outs (as mini-jacks) catering for surround sound. There's an additional stereo-out and stereo-in using phono plugs, SPDIF out, DIN and S-Video out with yet another set of stereo audio outs."
  • Acer AL1714CB-8 17" 8ms LCD - This 17" LCD is very similar to that of the AL1715b except it offers a blazing fast 8ms response and other competitive features for the budget consumer.
  • Konica Minolta Magicolor 2450 - A 200-sheet paper tray protrudes from the front and paper is fed to a folding output tray set into the printer's top. An optional second tray can be fitted underneath, holding a full ream of 500 sheets. There's no multi-purpose tray, though, so you have little facility for printing on
    specialist media, or even envelopes. Bringing some innovation to the colour laser market though is the PicBridge USB connector that adorns the front of the printer.
  • Samsung YP-T7Z - The YP-T7Z has certainly been a convenient MP3 player. The compact size is a definite plus for those who already carry a number of things in their pockets. The backlit color LCD makes it very easy to read at any time of the day. The ability to do a number of things with one device is certainly better than having one device for each product.
  • Sony Ericsson K750i - The design of the body is compact, even though the K750i's form has bulked up a little from that of the K700i, gaining 1mm in length and depth, and 6g in weight. But the additional mass is worn with style. The screen has stayed the same size, 176 x 220, but the colour depth has grown from 65,000 to 262,000 colours.

GUIDES...

  • Athlon64 3700+ Overclocking Fun -  After putting the chip under the freezer, the maximum stable speed we were able to coax from it was just 3.22 GHz (with 1.7V). This is a fairly average overclock for this processor. If you're interested in overclocking the Athlon64 3700+ is a great CPU for the purpose, even with just a performance heatsink and fan.
  • How To Desolder Components - Learn how to correctly desolder electronic components from printed circuit boards like motherboards and video cards.
  • Windows Server 2003 services that can be disabled - One of the most effective ways to secure Windows Server 2003 is to turn off unnecessary services. This detailed Excel spreadsheet lists 102 Windows Server 2003 services (download), describes each service's function, specifies whether you can safely disable the service, and outlines the ramifications of doing so. The spreadsheet also lists each service's default configuration for specific server roles--domain controller, DHCP server, File server, mail server, and so forth.

SOFTWARE...

  • RatDVD 0.7 - The software takes a full featured DVD movie and puts it into a highly compressed .ratDVD container format file - while preserving all the features of the original DVD. For many a great format to share movies or put several movies on one DVD. The latest version adds multi-language support, codec quality/speed optimizations, shut down after convert and many bug fixes and much more.
  • Nero Burning ROM 6.6.0.15 -  Nero has updated its burning suite Nero 6 Reloaded to version 6.6.0.15 (download / US mirror1 / US mirror 2). The company hasn't released any change logs yet. You can also download new versions for Nero Media Player 1.4.0.34, Nero Vision Express 3.1.0.14, Nero MIX 1.4.0.34, Nero LINUX 2.0.0.2 RPM | DEB.
  • Nero CD-DVD Speed 4.01 - Nero CD-DVD Speed (download) is a benchmark which can test the most important features of an optical drive. These tests include: Transfer rate, Seek times, CPU (Central Processing Unit) usage, Burst rate, DAE (Digital Audio Extraction) quality & Spinup/spindown time. It can also check the CD (Compact Disk) and DVD (Digital Versatile Disk) media quality.
  • VSO Inspector 1.10 - VSO-Inspector is a free add-on to report various information about your hardware configuration (detect and list the features of your CD/DVD writers, etc)
  • Nokia PC Suite 6.6 - Nokia PC Suite is a package of Windows-based PC applications developed especially for use with Nokia phones.
  • SciTE Text Editor 1.64 - SciTE (download / extras) is a SCIntilla based Text Editor. Originally built to demonstrate Scintilla, it has grown to be a generally useful editor with facilities for building and running programs. It is best used for jobs with simple configurations - I use it for building test and demonstration programs as well as SciTE and Scintilla, themselves.
  • Copernic Desktop Search 1.5 Build 644 - The Search Engine for Your PC (download) - Find Your Files and Emails with the Power of a Search Engine Right on Your Destop.
  • Google Toolbar 3.0.124.5 for IE & 1.0.20050707 for Firefox - Search Google from this toolbar (MSIE version / FireFox version) as well as block popups, autofill forms and more.
  • IconoMaker 2.10 - It's an easy (and FREE) to use IconoMaker (download) for creating and editing icons.
  • FastStone Image Viewer 2.15 Final - FastStone Image Viewer 2.15 is an image browser, viewer, converter and editor with an easy to use interface and a nice array of features that include resizing, renaming, cropping, color adjustments, watermarks and more. There's also new beta (2.16beta) available which adds option "Auto-Hide mouse cursor in Full Screen".
  • GAIM 1.4.0 - Gaim (download / changelog) is a multi-protocol instant messaging client for Linux, BSD, MacOS X, and Windows. It is compatible with AIM (Oscar and TOC protocols), ICQ, MSN Messenger, Yahoo, IRC, Jabber, Gadu-Gadu, and Zephyr networks.
  • Skype 1.03.00.57 - This new update fixes sound quality problems when not using headset (echo cancellation). There's also Skype Toolbar for Outlook - it integrates into Microsoft Outlook, the email and calendaring program in Microsoft's Office Suite..
  • eXeem 0.25 Public Beta - eXeem (download) is a brand new Peer-To-Peer program, which is based on the BitTorrent idea. eXeem eliminates the need for trackers as nodes in the program will be taking their role. eXeem also features easy publication of files to the network as well as a rating and comments system
  • K-Lite Mega Codec Pack 1.34 - The K-Lite Mega Codec Pack is a free software bundle which includes the K-Lite Codec Pack Full, QuickTime Alternative, Real Alternative, BSplayer and DC-DSP Filter.
  • Windows XP PowerPacker 1.0 RC1 - PowerPacker will help a user create a Multiboot Windows XP disk with or without DriverPacks. It will do almost everything for you, even hex edit the files needed to be hexed, create the boot directory, boot menu, etc. It makes creating multiboot XP disks a breeze.
  • Logitech SetPoint 2.41 - If you were using Logitech MouseWare with a Cordless Click! or a Cordless Click! Plus mouse, installing SetPoint on top of MouseWare will transfer control of your mouse from MouseWare to SetPoint. The latest version (v2.41) of Setpoint can be found here.
  • Intel Pro & ProSet 10.0 Network Card Drivers - product page / download
  • Intel Video Drivers 14.14 - product page / changelog / download
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,07 2005 - tech
ATI R520 to be available in mid-3Q - tech
(hx) 03:42 PM EDT - Jul,07 2005 - Post a comment / read (2)
DigiTimes reports that ATI expects to begin volume shipments of its 90nm graphics processing units (GPUs), the R520, R530 and RV515, in the middle of the third quarter, as unspecified issues for manufacturing on 90nm technology will soon be solved, according to ATI Taiwan. ATI also plans to introduce another flagship chip, the R580, in early 2006.
The upcoming launch of ATI' three 90nm graphics chips is expected to boost overall 90nm output from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), industry sources suggested. Although less than 4% of TSMC' sales came from 90nm technology in the second quarter of 2005, the percentage should grow to more than 10% by the fourth quarter, according to Rick Tsai, CEO of TSMC.

The launch of ATI' 90nm chips will accelerate the migration from AGP8X to PCI Express (PCIe), as falling prices for PCIe-capable products will stimulate demand, graphics-card makers commented. The PCIe segment is expected to account for half of graphics-card shipments by the end of this year, though the AGP8X segment should continue to dominate the entry-level segment through the middle of 2006, according to the makers.
 Gameguru Mania News - Jul,06 2005 - tech
Nightly Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 07:51 PM EDT - Jul,06 2005 - Post a comment

SECURITY...

  • Security Update for Internet Explorer for Windows XP Service Pack 2 - Security issues have been identified that could allow an attacker to compromise a computer running Internet Explorer and gain control over it. You can help protect your computer by installing this update from Microsoft. After you install this item, you may have to restart your computer.
  • An update available for a security vulnerability in the Javaprxy.dll COM object - The vulnerability in the Javaprxy.dll COM object may cause Microsoft Internet Explorer to stop working. This vulnerability may also allow an attacker to run arbitrary code and to gain control of the computer. The Javaprxy.dll COM object has the following class identifier (CLSID): 03D9F3F2-B0E3-11D2-B081-006008039BF0. This security update sets the Kill bit for this COM object.
  • Flaw Found in Adobe Acrobat - Adobe has warned of a serious flaw affecting one of the most widely distributed client applications, Acrobat Reader. The flaw leaves users open to attack via maliciously crafted PDF files, which can be spread via e-mail attachments web page links, and can be used to take control of a system. Solution: Update to Adobe Reader 7.0
  • New Trojan Knocks Out Symbian Phones - Users of Symbian Series 60 smart phones should be aware of a new Trojan horse that, if not removed within one hour, can cause complete data loss in their wireless devices, security experts warn. Several owners of Symbian-based handsets have caught the Trojan Doomboot.A. after downloading unauthorized mobile phone games containing the malware, says Anton Von Troyer, marketing manager of Finnish antivirus vendor F-Secure. F-Secure warned users on Friday on its Web site that Doomboot.A was in the wild.
  • DVD-Audio's CPPM can be got around with a WinDVD patch - It was not long ago that DVD-Audio playback software came to the PC. For example Creative's SoundBlaster Audigy 2 comes with a DVD-Audio as well as WinDVD 's DVD-Audio add-on. So, rather than try to compromise the DVD-Audio's encryption itself, someone has succeeded in making a patch that uses WinDVD to perform the decryption and playback, but instead pipes the decrypted audio output to the hard drive instead of the sound card. The patch which includes several tools requires WinDVD 5, 6 or 7 to work.
  • Longhorn locked down to fight hackers - According to Detlef Echert, Microsoft's chief security advisor in Europe, there are several key elements designed to boost security in its next OS. Hardware locking via a dedicated chip is combined with "hardening" of the OS to restrict how memory can be accessed. Security will also be boosted using a technique dubbed User Account Protection, which aims to ensure that computers can be locked so that local users are not given full administrator access by default.
  • MS UK defaced in hacking attack - Microsoft's UK web site was defaced late on Tuesday night with a message in support of Venezuelan hacker Rafa. Defacement archive Zone-H reports that well-known defacer Apocalypse hacked into Microsoft's UK web site (microsoft.co.uk) and uploaded a picture with the message "FREE RAFA - HACK IS NOT A CRIME" (recorded in an archive here). The site has since been restored to normal operation and the offending GIF removed.
  • Accused Sasser Worm Author Confesses in Court - Sven Jaschan, a 19 year old man on trial for authoring the Sasser Worm, has reportedly confessed to writing the malicious code which caused extensive damage to business and personal data all over the world, according to a German court
  • Man Arrested for Using Open Wireless Network - Richard Dinon saw the laptop's muted glow through the rear window of the SUV parked outside his home. He walked closer and noticed a man inside. Then the man noticed Dinon and snapped his computer shut. Maybe it's census work, the 28-year-old veterinarian told his girlfriend. An hour later, Dinon left to drive her home. The Chevy Blazer was still there, the man furtively hunched over his computer. Dinon returned at 11 p.m. and the men repeated their strange dance. Fifteen minutes later, Dinon called police. Police say Benjamin Smith III, 41, used his Acer brand laptop to hack into Dinon's wireless Internet network. The April 20 arrest is considered the first of its kind in Tampa Bay and among only a few so far nationwide.

OFFTOPIC...

  • I Set My Siemens C45 Cell Phone on Fire! - I had a Siemens C45 cell phone that didn't work right, in my opinion. I could barely hear who was talking to me and the person on the other side listened what I was saying even worse. It was impossible to have a conversation without at least one “I couldn't understand you, can you repeat please?” Besides that, C45 menu was insupportably slow and confusing.
  • Astrologer sues NASA for Tempel 1 'moral trauma' -  Russian astrologer is suing NASA for $300m in damages for "moral trauma" after the agency's Deep Impact mission successfully slammed a probe into comet Tempel 1. Marina Bay has filed suit in a Moscow court claiming that "any variation in the orbit or the composition of the Tempel comet will certainly affect her own fate". She also reckons that NASA has recklessly endangered the future of civilisation. Her lawyer, Alexander Molokhov, told the BBC: "Nobody has yet proven that this experiment was safe. This impact could have altered the orbit of the comet, so now there is a chance that the Tempel may well destroy the Earth some day!"
  • Poor diet + pollution = brain damage - Biomedical researchers in the UK are planning new research into the links between poor diet in children and their susceptibility to brain damage caused by pollution, particularly in the developing world. It is known that blood levels of around 10 micrograms of lead can cause a drop in IQ levels, the researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University explain. They hypothesise that low levels of iron can actually increase the absorption of other metals into the bloodstream.
  • Some people are profiting off of MMO gold - How does it work? The macros for World of WarCraft, for example, control a high-level hunter and cleric. The hunter kills while the cleric automatically heals. Once they are fully loaded with gold and items, the "farmer" who's monitoring their progress manually controls them out of the dungeon to go sell their goods. These automated agents are then returned to the dungeons to do their thing again. Sack's typical 12-hour sessions can earn his employers as much as $60,000 per month while he walks away with a measly $150.

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Europe rejects patent proposal - A government representative said that 648 out of 729 members of the European Parliament voted Wednesday to reject the proposal, called the Computer Implemented Inventions Directive, which would have widened the extent to which software could be patented.
  • Nokia to Offer Free Blackberry-style 'Push' E-mail - Nokia is planning to offer free "push" e-mail on all its handsets, according to software vendor Seven, in a bid to boost the use of mobile e-mail. The free service will forward email to the phone as it arrives, making POP and IMAP email easier to use on a mobile phone. If it takes off, it will be a useful revenue boost for mobile operators -- only the application service is free, and users will pay normal GPRS rates for the data sent and received.
  • Microsoft tempts developers with Visual Studio 2005 - Andrew Lees, corporate vice president of server tools at Microsoft, said during his keynote address at the TechEd conference in Amsterdam that Visual Studio 2005 would cut the amount of new code by up to 70 per cent by automating processes. He added that applications could be configured to automatically update themselves from a website to ensure fast, automatic distribution of patches and revisions.
  • Opera Embedding BitTorrent Client - The next version of Opera, 8.02, will have an embedded BitTorrent client. Opera has released today a Technical Preview of this new version on its FTP directory, though they have made no official announcement as of yet.
  • Google Plans to Release Firefox-Ready Tool Bar - After years of offering its browser tool bar only for Internet Explorer, Google is planning to join its competitors in supporting the open-source Mozilla Firefox browser. The tool bar for Firefox will include most of the same features as the Internet Explorer version except for pop-up blocking, which is already built into the Firefox browser.
  • How much ATI really paid for its Half Life 2 deal  - According to The Inquirer, ATI gave Valve $2.4 million in cash for the deal. ATI also invested $1.2 million in marketing this great game. And last, but not least, was a cool $4.4 million that ATI and its partners spent for bundles. That amounts to some $8 million dollars. This is a lot of money, I can agree, but ATI never sold so many mainstream and high end cards in its long history as when it bundled them with the justly famous voucher. It sold an incredible lot of 9800XT and 9600XT cards just because of the nice voucher.

HARDWARE... 

  • AMD to cut Sempron prices, debut dual-core CPU priced at US$345 - AMD has informed motherboard makers that the unit price (for 1000 unit lots) for its Sempron CPUs will be adjusted downward in early August, with Sempron 2500+ prices dropping more than US$7, according to sources in the motherboard industry. AMD also plans to launch a dual-core Athlon 64 X2 processor on August 1 priced at US$345, a third less than its current lowest priced dual-core CPU, the sources indicated.
  • Nvidia Preps More GeForce 7 Graphics Chips - NVIDIA Corp. may be preparing a new GeForce 7-series graphics processors in addition to already launched GeForce 7800 GTX product, as the firm's unofficial drivers already list a chip code-named G72, which may turn out to be a more affordable GeForce 7 family member
  • ATI Expands All-In-Wonder Lineup - ATI Technologies said Tuesday it has expanded its family of multimedia graphics cards with All-In-Wonder X800 XL. ATI's All-In-Wonder X800 XL features ATI's latest TV-Tuner, which is based on RF technology from Microtune and can receive up to 125 PAL and SECAM channels in addition to FM radio, additionally, the set of connectors also includes SCART support for customers in Europe, as well as THEATER 200 chip that handles Video-in, Video-out features.
  • ATI Crossfire Sneak Peak with DFI - Hexus.net compared some Crossfire benchmarks they snagged at Computex with some benchmarks from other cards on a similarly-specced system. Using Supertiling, the default mode for Crossfire under Direct3D, shows that 6800 Ultra SLI is faster. However that's just in 3DMark05, not a modern game title, and that's using a beta driver that might not be there in terms of the performance that ATI have today, internally. It'll be interesting to see where performance is when Crossfire is launched using an official driver, along with NVIDIA hardware running any new driver that NVIDIA may or may not have planned for their hardware.
  • $299 Linux PC hits US shelves - Systemax has unveiled its first desktop PC pre-installed with desktop Linux. The budget model is selling in the US for $299. The system builder chose Linspire's operating system for its Venture L335 system which comes with an Intel Celeron D processor, 40GB hard drive and 256MB of RAM.
  • G.Skill Extreme PC3200 2-2-2-5 1GB Kit - OCTools take a look at G.Skill's Winbond UTT offering, the F1-3200BWU2-1GBGH. These modules are based on the Winbond UTT chips that are capable of very high frequencies at ultra low latency timings. Specifically targetted for motherboards with high memory voltage options, these modules were made with overclocking at extreme latencies in mind.
  • nForce4 Ultra Roundup: Charting the Mainstream - The Epox 9NPA+ is the fastest board in the roundup at stock speeds. It was also the highest overclocker at stock speeds, and the second highest overclocker when the bus was overclocked. The Epox is an incredible value whether you are looking for a board that will run fast with stability at stock speeds or a board that will satisfy almost any Athlon 64 enthusiast.
  • HIS X700 iCooler Dual DVI VIVO 256MB PCI-E - Much like the PowerColor Bravo X700, this HIS X700 iCooler was good, but not breathtaking. Power and performance simply can't come from an X700, no matter who you buy it from. What we have here is a card that's perfect if you're the occasional gamer, someone who loves their dual LCD displays or a home theater enthusiast who just needs their HTPC projected on to a HDTV.
  • Hitachi 7K500 - 500 GB SATA 2 Hard Drive - Currently Hitachi is testing 3 Gbits/sec controller on the Silicon Image 3124, Intel ICH7, NVIDIA Nforce 4 and Promise Technology TX300, 2300. one other thing worth mentioning is drives 16 megabytes caches, when playing games such Halflife 2 or Doom 3 where prior to installing the drive the games would hesitate or lag, when the new drive was installed and the games were played under the same settings the games ran perfectly.
  • ASUS WL-HDD 2.5 - NAS and Wireless AP - The ASUS WL-HDD is NAS (Network Attached Storage) and AP (Access Point) all in one, at an affordable price. The device supports 2.5 inch hard drives and 802.11g Wireless Networking. It is designed to allow you to add file sharing storage to your network with ease and provide Wireless Networking to a wired network.
  • Razer Diamondback Plasma L.E - Razer Diamondback is a high quality mouse with great performance. The higher dpi will benefit professional designers and gamers alike. The design is great, and the Plama LED adds a lot to the appearance. Even though the mouse seems a little small it has good grip thanks to the anti-slip coating and the rubber side rails.
  • XFX Xgear Dual Reflex Controller - This is the gamepad that comes bundled for free with GeForce 7800 GTX from XFX, which we have already reviewed. Its layout is similar to Playstation 2 controllers, with two analog sticks, one digital pad, eight buttons, vibrating mode, macro mode, turbo mode and three shortcut buttons (select, start and clear). It uses USB connection and it comes with a very long 10-feet (3 meters) cable.
  • Nissan Technology DV-100B DVD Player - With the tumbling prices in this market segment, the one thing that made it stand out - the card reader - was ultimately not executed well enough to make the DV-100B a huge success. On the other hand, the DiVX playback and other capabilities of this player mean that it's a recommended overall package that can be found well below RRP already.
  • Ricoh Caplio GX8 Digital Camera -  Its key selling points, apart from its sheer pixel-power, are its 3x optical zoom, 28-85mm (35mm equivalent) lens and its high-speed performance. It is ready to take  pictures in just 1.3 seconds from a cold start, and is equipped with a hybrid autofocus system that can lock onto a subject in one tenth of a second, virtually eliminating shutter lag. Its shot-to-shot times are equally impressive.

GUIDES...

  • Introduction to FB-DIMM Memory: Birth of Serial RAM? - FB-DIMM memory (short for Fully-Buffered Dual Inline Memory Module) is a variant of standard DDR2 memory designed for server applications where both large amounts of memory and memory co-ordination and accuracy at high speeds are essential. FB-DIMM memory combines the high-speed internal architecture of DDR2 memory with a brand-new point-to-point serial memory interface which links each FB-DIMM module together in a chain.
  • Water block fun: demonRed, the DIY water cooling setup - Guest writer djivesp shows us how he build a complete water cooling setup from scratch, using parts from his old Toyota, and making himself water blocks for CPU, northbridge and his NV6800LE, the last one features 3-barbs and packs quite a punch.

SOFTWARE...

  • Microsoft Student 2006 - Microsoft Student 2006 includes the following features: Learning Essentials for Students helps students get to the heart of the assignment by customizing Microsoft Office to meet their unique needs.2 Learning Essentials for Students provides toolbars, templates and tutorials to help teens with a variety of subjects and assignments, from history reports and English papers to physics projects and foreign languages, using Microsoft Office Word, Microsoft Office Excel and Microsoft Office PowerPoint. The Microsoft Student 2006 DVD3 is scheduled for availability in July 2005 for an estimated retail price of $99.99.
  • Global Contact Access for windows mobile - You can now download Global Contact Access for windows mobile here, but even better than this - Ewan has already done a blogcast showing how it works.
  • Memory Leak in Windows XP Tablet PC Edition - A memory leak in Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005 causes a gradual decrease in available system memory. This loss in available memory causes degradation in system performance. When this behavior occurs, the user must restart the computer
  • Microsoft Money 2006 Deluxe Trial - Microsoft Money 2006 makes it easy to stay on top of your finances. You get all your finances, all in one place. Money 2006 works with your checking, credit card and brokerage accounts. Money also helps you understand spending, manage your bills and organize for tax time.
  • phpMyAdmin 2.6.3-pl1 - phpMyAdmin can manage a whole MySQL-server (needs a super-user) but also a single database. To accomplish the latter you`ll need a properly set up MySQL-user who can read/write only the desired database.
  • About 1.2.0 Firefox Extension Update - Adds the following "about:" options (install) to the Help menu: about:config, about:plugins, about:, about:buildconfig, about:cache, about:cache (Disk), about:cache (Memory), about:credits, about:kitchensink, about:mozilla
  • FastStone Image Viewer 2.15 - 7/4/2005 Beta Build - FastStone Image Viewer (download) is an image browser, viewer, converter and editor with an easy to use interface and a nice array of features that include resizing, renaming, cropping, color adjustments, watermarks and more
  • Real Alternative 1.42 - Real Alternative will allow you to play RealMedia files without having to install RealPlayer or RealOne Player from Real Networks. Supported are: RealAudio (.ra .rpm), RealMedia (.rm .ram .rmvb .rpx .smi .smil), RealText (.rt) and ReadPix (.rp). It also supports RealMedia content that is embedded in webpages. The very user-friendly installation is fully customizable, which means that you can install only those components that you want.
  • Inmatrix Zoom Player 4.50 - After over 10 months of developments, Zoom Player v4.50 (download) has gone final. The complete change list is over 500 lines long and contains numarous new features, functions, fixes, improvements, optimizations, tweaks, and pretty much the kitchen sink. So make sure to check it out!
  • SuperEdi 3.7.2 - SuperEdi (download) is a text editor with syntax coloring and build-in FTP client. The build-in directory tree helps you locate files quickly without opening the Windows Explorer. Context sensitive information is available via keyword lookup in any Windows help file.
  • Skype 1.3.0.55 - Skype (download) uses P2P (peer-to-peer) technology to connect you to other users. Not to share files, but to talk with them for free. The technology is extremely advanced, but very simple and easy to use.
  • 7-Zip 4.24 Beta - 7-Zip (download) is a file archiver with high compression ratio
  • Alcohol 120% v1.9.5.3105 - Alcohol 120% (download / changelog) is a combination of both Alcohol 52% and Alcohol 68%. It enables users to both copy and emulate real or virtual CDs & DVDs
  • XPepius 2.0.7 - XPepius is a free tools suite for tweaking, optimizing and tuning of Windows XP It helps you increase performance and manage your system using various tweaks and utilities. In addition to the tweaks, the program also offers several tools (Utilities) that include a Start-Up Manager, Uninstaller, Cleanup Center (includes registry cleaner).
  • HDDlife 2.5.59 - HDDlife (download) can work in the preventative mode when it checks the health of your hard drives at regular intervals and informs you about the results of these checks in an unobtrusive way. If you get warned about a possible hard drive failure , you will protect yourself against losing your naturally priceless personal data.
PREV PAGENEXT PAGE