Friday, January 28, 2005

Dumb Palm flies smarter

On a recent flight to Miami while I was blogging (off-line of course) into my Sony NX60, it hit me. If I had the current handheld of my dreams, the Palm Treo 650, I wouldn't be able to use it during the flight, at least with the current FAA regulations. That is of course because the Treo 650 is also a cellphone. That's something to keep in mind when buying a Palm Smartphone...

Friday, January 21, 2005

So long DSL...

Well, I really needed to get online this evening to take care of some last-minute finances before heading off on vacation. Of course when I needed it most, the DSL service was not working. I had reset the modem, rebooted the computer, switched the modem off for 45 seconds, but it still wasn't working. This was the last straw. I had been putting up with the speed getting slower and slower until it was only double or triple dial-up speed. Today I had planned to cancel Cable Internet service and switch to DSL. Instead I hooked up my main Desktop PC and was online in a reboot, speed somewhere above 3500 Kbps - yesterday DSL was down to less than 200 Kbps. Thank the Lord still I was still within the 30-day trial period, so I phoned them up to cancel. Understandably they wanted to dissuade me - could they transfer me to tech support? No, I was finding it difficult to be civil, I wanted to cancel. Apparently un-installing and re-installing the software would solve my problem. I was adamant and canceled the DSL service. It was quite a relief actually. After the relatively trouble-free cable internet service with fairly constant line speed, DSL just didn't cut it.
The free MSN Premium (soon to be switched to Yahoo Premium) and wireless access in New York City were non-essential perks.

Well, I've tried DSL, but the old adage seems to apply: "You get what you pay for".

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

A cheap Mac

According to ExtremeTech, in an article "The Mac Mini: Less Than You Think" the Mac Mini is not a cheap Macintosh. The premium on the prices of Apple Macs is for the cool factor, I guess. As for the iPod, that's ultra-cool.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Partitions Mangled

I feel so bright. Not satisfied with having my eMachines Desktop dual-booting between Windows XP and Windows 2000 Professional, I decided to add an extra instance of Windows XP as well.
Partition Magic 8 made it a breeze to create the extra partition between Windows XP (the first partition) and Windows 2000 (the second partition).

Unfortunately when the Windows XP setup rebooted the first time during the setup, I got this error message:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt.
Windows root\system32\hal.dll.
Please re-install a copy of the above file

Fortunately for the Partition Magic bootable rescue disks, which let me set the Windows XP partition active again, and boot into it..

An Internet search found numerous solutions for this, even a blog. I didn't get far with the solutions, and decided to leave it for later.

Then I though I'd check that my Windows 2000 partition was still working. It wasn't, so I moved the windows 2000 partition back (forward?) so it was the second partition on the hard disk, where it had been before.

Then it gave this error message:

Windows 2000 could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
\(Windows 2000)\System32\Ntoskrnl.exe

Okay, now I'm going to have to fix this one first...

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Trojan Exploits Windows DRM

According to, Anti-Virus and security vendor Panda Labs is reporting the discovery of a threat that takes advantage of Windows Digital Rights Management (DRM).

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Microsoft Abandons Passport

According to Speed Guide, Microsoft is abandoning Microsoft Passport, one of its most controversial attempts to dominate the Internet.

Microsoft Offers Virus-Removal Program

From My Way News: a Microsoft executive confirmed the company's plans to sell its own antivirus software, which would compete against programs from McAfee, Symantec and others.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

DSL working

I finally got DSL working on my old Desktop PC. I needed a longer CAT-5 UTP (Unshielded Twisted-Pair) cable which bought from RadioShack. Apparently DSL won't worked with "Patch Cables" - which works with Cable. I also had to change the static IP address that I had assigned to the machine in Windows XP Networking

Saturday, January 01, 2005

DSL for the New Year

For the New Year I'm trying DSL, or at least trying to try DSL. For a total of 4 hours over 2 successive nights the furthest I've got is installing the DSL software and setting up the account. That may sound good, but it took less than an hour to set up my Cable modem connection the first time.

So, if I have cable internet (fast cable internet I might add), why am I bothering with DSL?. Simple Economics: The DSL should save me over $100 per year.
I have 30 days to decide whether to keep the DSL. So far the prognosis is not good. Unless it goes smoother I'll be returning the DSL package...