Sunday, October 27, 2013


So its time to upgrade to Windows 8.1. point release with many under the hood changes that I'm not gonna observe as all are in the tablet mode of the UI.

I go straight to the desktop and have classic shell installed so things are just like windows 7 for me. I like it that way and dont want any full screen apps starting on my 19" monitor. I am unable to understand that; as we move forward the screen space wasted is also going up . All the glossy effects, Aero style and now this single app on screen are wasting my precious screen real estate. Come on guys make better utilisation of pixels don't take it all up for a app. That remind me I have to find a way to disable the music app to run on double click.

So the system details screen above shows windows 8.1 another way to confirm is the command line version which wshould show something like the following screen. Microsoft Windows [Version 6.3.9600]


At this point id add the Windows Experience Index for the new OS but that has been done away by MS in 8.1. Now there's no standardised method to compare performance

Things I noticed after upgrade
1) the "My computer" is not called "This PC", change in semantics that i dont care about. I have only this windows machine at the moment and i dont foresee a windows device (tablet or mobile) with me in near future. Unless MS graciously gives it to me for free in which case i'll gladly accept it.
2) the tablet interface has colourful stuff as background which I immediately changed to desktop background to make the switch less jarring.
3) No change for the worse which is a great thing.

Be careful:
BEWARE: If you have multiple hdds in the machine and have copies of windows 8 on them then upgrade process might get confused and half upgrade main one and half another leading to unbootable both. I have 3 copied of same windows installation. Original installation on 1st HDD, migrate to 2nd as it was newer with less badness. then another migration to ssd.

lessons learnt:
1) Always have a backup installer disk/media ready.
 i didn't have and wasted 2 days finding one. You know its not possible to download the windows 8 install disk image without already  having some version of windows. MS does not provide a web link to download the image. Only its executable can. My other machine is linux and it was useless in making teh recovery media. shame on you MS.  
2) Remove all other harddisks before installation:
another waste of time to screw up installations. disabling in bios is not enough. windows find the other installation and corrupts it. Physically cable has to be removed from the machine.
3) Ensure you have nothing important dependent on that machine.
Things might go wrong as they sometimes do and especially if you have something important to do.
4) Take periodic backups of the system image.
This is not a refined platform like android where the backup method is already available by default after rooting. Its not like windows had a head start over android and is yet to figure out that ... oh wait a minute it pre-dates android. So why is its not easy to make backups, why is the third party app like easeus method easier to find and perform  that the inbuilt one. is there a inbuilt one which makes portable versions of system backup ??

So its definitely worth the upgrade and a definite 'go for it' to windows 8 users.



Sunday, December 18, 2011

Android 2.3.6 update for SGS2

Played with SGS2 today (after a long time)

Finally i got around to playing with S2 and upgraded the firmware. Samsung is not releasing the upgrade in India through Kies hence had to resort to loading Australian 2.3.6 firmware.

First i backup using Kies. Took a long time to backup. During this time the XWKK2  was downloading so multitasking ;)

Steps from  http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1075278

First I rooted the phone and did a nandroid backup as well as Titanium backup.
Then I loaded Australian SGS2 XWKK2
     Was worried about not flashing Indian CSC but Vodafone seem to work with the image. :)
Post this I wanted to change to more customized kernel hence loaded up Suyah kernel using Odin.

ROM manager does not work with the CF-root installed CWM recovery but CWM manager by chainfire works fine.

Lets see how this works out. Have been struggling with the power. must be one of tones of application I installed. Was much better with stock apps only.

PS. Also purchased Philips DVD player and Logitech 2.1 THX certified speakers. Have to write about them too.


Sunday, November 13, 2011

My Gadgets (powered by Linux only)


Linux is everywhere. That’s easy to say but I decided to find out what all I have. So given above is the shot of all the Linux powered devices that I have. Also, they are all the wifi devices that I have. I as not sure if my canon sx30 is running on Linux hence not including in the list.


My Linux gadgets


In the order of size they are .
  • Samsung Laptop:
Bought about 4 months ago. Bought for study purpose but have not done anything till date. Also wanted some thing lighter and this is not. Couldn't get something in 11 to 13” range. Some new stuff is now launched but too late for me now. Came with FreeDOS. Currently running Ubuntu 11.11. It has seen Fedora, Ubuntu, OpenSuse till now and might get to run OpenBSD in some time. Have to get some time for that. Don't like the new Widget-y look of the new Oss though.
  • HP touch-pad 32GB:
Most recent purchase from Amazon.com. The shipper did not account for import tax and had to visit the local customs office for this. Apart from this I have no complaint regarding this. Comes with WebOS which is a nice OS. Also installed Cyanogen Mod Alpha 2 on Touchpad which runs nicely. very good performance for an alpha release of Android. But I have decided to stick to WebOS. Its nice has overclock support to 1.5Ghz and has the games that run nicely. I play bug life, Asphalt6, NFS hot pursuit, etc on this and they run great.
Recommended for everyone if they can get it cheaply. 20k Android 10" tablet. Others are nearly 30k I am lovin this one
  • Amazon Kindle:
Great single purpose device for reading books. Got it last year for preparing/studying for the job change. Not very useful for the technical .pdf format books that I wanted to read. but should be great for the pocket sized books that are available for casual reading. I think it should always be bought with the case, kindle is a bit difficult to hold without it. Also, it plays mp3 file and now Amazon has added Audible audiobook support as well. Am a big fan of the Audiobooks now. but most of my time is spent listening to podcasts and not getting the time now.
  • Samsung Galaxy S II (SGS2 9100) :
After the LG Optimus one I wanted a bigger screen and this was the best handset a few months ago and surprisingly it still is. Wonderful screen, Fast processor So much memory. Optimus one has 200MB of app memory and it was a struggle to have apps and worry about app2sd and all that. This has 2GB of app memory and I have not even used 1 GB of it. Choice is a wonderful predicament. The newer handsets are just about equaling this one and it is a testament to the work of Samsung that even after nearly a year of launch the is is still the best phone. Hopefully it'll get the the ICS soon.
  • LG Optimus One:
Got this last year along with my car for the interviews. Having a car would increase my area of jobs to target and with no knowledge of Bangalore roads I needed maps. So this was my navigation device. A good handset which gave me no problems. Still working and is now my moms gaming device where she plays angry birds rio all the time. Coming from the normal feature phone this was a big change for me. Changing from nokia was also a big decision but they did not have any good handsets then. Soon realized that the smart phone needs a big screen for the maps and browsing. The medium sized screen was becoming a problem. 

 That's it for now.  TC and Enjoy life.
PS. Thanks to my friend blogger who inspired me to take up blogging again.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Additional Memory: RAM and Hard Disk

I recently succumbed to some online temptation and did some IT shopping buying RAM and other stuff for my computer. I brought them from www.computerwarehousepricelist.com and it was delivered to home. I got  extension cable for USB, Sound and LAN, Belkin Gold Series 8-Socket Surge Protector, 512 MB of SDRAM for my old machine at home. Shouldn't ignore it just because of this new machine  :)

I also brought Seagate Goflex Desk 2 TB  external disk drive to move my media collection from my main machine. I got this one from Ebay for 6500. I got the USB2 interface but it is possible to just purchase the FreeAgent® GoFlex Desk Desktop Adapter Kit USB 3.0 separately and upgrade tfrom 2 to 3 which I believe is very fast and near native. I asked the Ebay retailer and according to him the prices of USB 3 Goflex Desk kit should drop by year end.

Nice useful device to have and after I move the resident stuff to it and free up space I'll be able to start with fetching new data. I was struggling with disk space problem since some time and HDD and RAM solves my current problems and also provide a bit of future provisioning. No more thinking or clearing other stuff before downloading new one. Also useful when I visit my hometown.

Further Details about RAM : 
Corsair TWIN2X4096-6400C5C 5-5-5-18 dual channel RAM sticks. : Now my machine has a total of 6 GB of RAM running. Other is Corsair TWIN2X2048-6400.
Since I run a custom crosshair BIOS version 1304 V2 made by GinieMaster and published at computerbase for which the creator has given a warning that 4 RAM sticks might not work, I bought 4 GB in case the previous 2 stopped working.
I connected the new ones and started the machine. It started. Cool!
I added the old ones too and was not very optimistic about the machine starting. It started !!! Great! :)

The machine booted up and I checked Task Manager, System Properties, RAM status widget and other places it shows the RAM amount and speed. I was happy to see all 6 GB reported and working. Now what? 
I didn't notice anything different. And then I felt that Firefox was not grinding to a halt after consuming > 1 GB of RAM. OK great, That was just the reason I bought the RAM for. 
I Happy. 

[My Windows Experience Index for memory is 7.1 now.]

Friday, November 27, 2009

Windows 7 at office

I recently got a new machine at office. I have Windows 7 loaded on it now. It is an Acer Emachine 1210 with 19" monitor.

That model originally had Vista but now they provide it loaded with windows 7 also. I was waiting for this to happen since I did not want to work on Vista. I mean, Vista is ok, I have used it at home for more than a year but at office I do not want to use my time on solving Software issues and learning the difficult method to do something which was easy in Windows XP. Furthermore the Vista installation did not have any drivers installed. The display was weird with the wide-screen monitor trying to display standard 4:3 resolution screen. I had to install the drivers for graphics, monitor, and even the mouse driver to be able to use it for a week.

The story goes like this. The support guys tried to upgrade the OS for that machine to Win7 from Vista(Upgrade is a misnomer here since there were going to replace it with blank copy of a new installation requiring all software to be reinstalled) but for some reason the machine refused to listen to him and kept rebooting in Vista.Then complete machine was replaced and he brought another machine which had Win7 already on it. That was disappointing since I wanted to see how they upgrade to Win7.

So my emachine now has Win7. It was disappointing to see that Aero was not working and hence I was not able to change the color of the task-bar. It looks so irritating that I had to change the theme to Windows classic to be able to tolerate it. It seem there is some problem with the rating system and it crashes, so the machine is not able to rate itself and turn ON the more advanced feature like Aero.

Apart from that it is better than Vista in speed and smoothness. I was not able to install Cisco VPN client on it. I have to figure out how to do it since it is very important for my work. Right now I also have another machine so it is not much of a problem.

All in all it is OK. Provides good functionality. Uses less memory and the hibernate function actually works this time around for me to resume all my open windows the next day directly. And this means that I can switch off the machine and save some power to do something good for the mother earth.

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