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Sunday, December 31, 2006


Dear reader of ChewOnTech, I had just found the best website for you to buy HDTVs from at a very cheap price. It is the cheapest you can ever find online. HDTVs The deal can be found here: and users can sign up to receive it via email or RSS. Cheapest LCDs Season greetings They also have season greetings deals that are ever cheaper then before. They must be deals for christmas, but I think they extended it due to overwhelming response Second Act Mobile phone deals They also have a feature where they offer you 10% off your purchase if you buy your HDTV from your mobile phone What they sell They sell a range of products that makes up TV. Something like LCds, HDTVS, Plasma and other big screen display. Check them out

Born To Bet

Attention all Casino users, it is time to read this blog post and be professional and be an expert and act like one in your poker games. If you are yearning to be one now, you must read this blog post. Because I am going to review one of the best casino sites that had ever visited This website is something special, instead of hosting casino website here with all the games and customer database, they do reviews of the existing casino websites. This way, they would never get to get any lawsuit from any law firms or any government agency. How smart Best Online Casinos News Articles They also provide news in the form of news articles for free specially for you to read the current news about the industry and be kept updated about it. What casino sites are being reviewed now? The casino sites that are being reviewed now are Roxy Palace Casino Reviews Poker Room Reviews Poker Tips and many more Learning They also provide a feature that allows you to learn how to play poker from them for free. No charges and no hassles. They also provide the latest tips on casino for you in their website. Nice neat features Check them out

Baidu enters Japan


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Baidu's plans to enter Japan were announced this morning, but it's important to temper expectations. Baidu has been dominant in China, growing its market share to nearly two-thirds of the market at the expense of stateside leaders like Google, but it's at a disadvantage in Japan.

Why? Because it's late to the game. It's also one of the many away teams fighting for a local presence.

Japan can be a tough nut to crack. Just ask eBay. The world's leading auctioneer had to bow out of Japan four years ago when the alliance of Yahoo! and Softbank proved to be too strong in carving out its online marketplace.

But Baidu's got a shot. It'll be a familiar name, and it is the world's fourth most popular website. The only three that are larger are Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft. In other words, it's the world's most-visited site originating in the Eastern hemisphere. Even if Baidu's fate is to only command a thin slice of the Japanese market, it will be worth it as long as the move is profitable. Japan is a much smaller market than China, but it's also one where advertisers are willing to pay more to reach more affluent consumers.

If it fails, history won't dwell on the grazed knees. Unlike the proverb, one misstep doesn't necessarily lead to an eternity of regret. Clearly, eBay has grown globally despite its early stumble in Japan. The move may also help Baidu port its search engine prowess into neighboring countries even if it does come up short in Japan. So it's a bonus if it pans out and an expansion exercise if it does not.

Mozilla updates it Firefox 2.0

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! Mozilla Org release FireFox

What's New in Firefox

MFSA 2006-76 XSS using outer window's Function object MFSA 2006-75 RSS Feed-preview referrer leak MFSA 2006-73 Mozilla SVG Processing Remote Code Execution MFSA 2006-72 XSS by setting img.src to javascript: URI MFSA 2006-71 LiveConnect crash finalizing JS objects MFSA 2006-70 Privilege escallation using watch point MFSA 2006-69 CSS cursor image buffer overflow (Windows only) MFSA 2006-68 Crashes with evidence of memory corruption (rv:
  • Windows Vista Support: Windows Vista is generally supported with the following caveats.

Downloading and Installing

System Requirements

Before installing, make sure your computer meets the system requirements.


Minimum System Requirements
  • 233 Mhz processor
  • 64 MB of RAM
  • 50 MB of free disk space
  • Microsoft Windows 98
Mozilla Recommends
  • 500 Mhz processor
  • 256 MB of RAM
  • 100 MB of free disk space
  • Microsoft Windows XP


Minimum System Requirements
  • PowerPC G3 processor
  • 128 MB of RAM
  • 75 MB of free disk space
  • Mac OS X 10.2.x
Mozilla Recommends
  • PowerPC G4 or Intel processor
  • 512 MB of RAM
  • 150 MB of free disk space


Minimum System Requirements
  • 233 Mhz processor
  • 64 MB of RAM
  • 50 MB of free disk space
  • Linux kernel 2.2.14 (with glibc 2.3.2, XFree86-3.3.6, gtk+2.0, fontconfig/xft and libstdc++5)
Mozilla Recommends
  • 500 Mhz processor
  • 256 MB of RAM
  • 100 MB of free disk space
  • a modern Linux distribution

Downloading Firefox 2 provides Firefox 2 for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X in a variety of languages. You can get the latest version of Firefox 2 here. For builds for other systems and languages not provided by, see the Contributed Builds section at the end of this document.

Installing Firefox 2

Please note that installing Firefox 2 will overwrite your existing installation of Firefox. You won't lose any of your bookmarks or browsing history, but some of your extensions and other add-ons might not work until updates for them are made available.

Removing Firefox 2

You can remove Firefox 2 through the Control Panel in the Start Menu on Windows, by removing the Firefox application on OS X, or by removing the firefox folder on Linux.

Removing Firefox 2 won't remove your bookmarks, web browsing history, extensions or other add-ons. This data is stored in your profile folder, which is located in one of the following locations depending on your operating system:

Windows 2000, XP Documents and Settings\\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox
Windows NT WINNT\Profiles\\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox
Windows 98, ME Windows\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox
Mac OS X ~/Library/Application Support/Firefox
Linux and Unix systems ~/.mozilla/firefox

Any version of Firefox that you install after removing Firefox 2 will continue to use the data from this profile folder. get sued

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! Several major record labels sued the operator of the Russian music website, claiming the company has been profiting by selling copies of music without their permission.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in federal court in New York against Moscow-based Mediaservices, which owns AllofMP3 and another music site,

A slate of major record labels, including Arista Records LLC, Warner Bros. Records Inc., Capitol Records Inc. and UMG Recordings Inc., are behind the lawsuit.

The music companies are seeking a court order against Mediaservices and unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

A call and an e-mail seeking comment from the Washington D.C.-based spokesman for Mediaservices were not immediately returned.

AllofMP3 typically charges under $1 for an entire album and just cents per track. By contrast, an album at Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes Music Store and other licensed services typically costs about $10 and a song 99 cents.

Mediaservices has maintained that by paying royalties to a Russian licensing group, the website is in compliance with Russian laws. The music industry contends that the Russian licensing group doesn't have the authority to collect and distribute royalties.

AllofMP3 is sued for $1.65 TRILLION!!!! which is $150,000 for each song

BBC goes into file sharing

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! Hundreds of episodes of BBC programmes will be made available on a file-sharing network for the first time, the corporation has announced.

The move follows a deal between the commercial arm of the organisation, BBC Worldwide, and technology firm Azureus.

The agreement means that users of Azureus' Zudeo software in the US can download titles such as Little Britain.

Until now, most BBC programmes found on peer-to-peer file-sharing networks have been illegal copies.

Beth Clearfield, vice president of program management and digital media at BBC Worldwide, said, "We are very excited to partner with Azureus and make our content available through this revolutionary distribution model" is testing it's new search interface

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! quietly began testing a new search interface this week in a bid to highlight its technology and take on titan Google anew.

Ask, a longtime background player in search that shed its "Jeeves" image this year, launched simplified user interface for scouring Web sites, images, news and video. The company, owned by InterActiveCorp (IAC), described the site as a test bed for Ask's future technology.

"In today's version of Ask X, you're not just getting back a list of links, but a slick, new three-panel interface," according to the company. The left panel includes search suggestions, the middle panel displays Web listings and, at right, the page shows alternative results for video, shopping or encyclopedia links.

The test comes on the heels of Ask's unveiling of a new local search site,, which features maps and city business listings. The launch also highlights the fact that the contest to dominate Web search is far from over, despite Google's huge lead in the market--a more than 45 percent share compared with Ask's roughly 5.9 percent, according to researcher ComScore.

IAC doesn't plan to neglect Ask in light of its position in search behind Google, Yahoo and MSN. Rather, the company aims to gain market share from these giants by investing in tech improvements while Google bets on other markets like Wi-Fi, for example.

To be sure, Chief Executive Barry Diller told investors late Tuesday about the new site as a way to emphasize that the search company is central to tying all of IAC's properties together. IAC, which announced it would take a $200 million pretax charge this year, owns Evite, Citysearch and Ticketmaster, among other properties.

Also, Ask's advertising deal with Google ends in 2007, giving the company the opportunity to shop for a new partner to supply sponsored listings in search results. Search experts say Ask will likely be in a ripe position for courtship from Yahoo and MSN, along with Google.

Chris Sherman, executive editor for new industry Web site, said that Ask X is a departure from the company's bland interface and helps feature results that are different from rivals.

"Ask doesn't have big market share," said Sherman, "but they've got a fanatic user base like Apple's."

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Windows Vista crack is a trojan


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Malware makers are starting to take advantage of the number of users searching for cracks for the pirated copies of Vista floating around.

A new download has started circulating around the crack boards called "Windows Vista All Versions Activation 21.11.06". It purports to be an activation crack for any version of Vista.

However, the file is actually a trojan-carrier which will install Trojan-PSW.Win32.LdPinch.aze onto your PC.

BitTorrent users who posted reviews of the crack said that a number of antivirus programs detected the malware, though Norton AntiVirus and NOD32 did not.

In an interview about the Windows Vista installation process, and the ease with which administrators can pre-install software into a Vista install DVD, Microsoft Australia's John Pritchard warned that pirated copies of Vista could easily come with malware preinstalled. Another way to crack Windows Vista more effectively

Please note that the file may contain virus or trojan. Try it at YOUR OWN RISK

  1. Install Windows Vista Ultimate edition (or other edition) without product key.
  2. Windows Vista needs to be applied with 2099-ReArm trick, so that the counter of minutes to no activation required period will not return to normal after reboot. Click on Start Orb button.
  3. Select “All Programs”, then “Accessories”.
  4. Right click on “Command Prompt, then select “Run as Administrator (A)”.
  5. If User Account Control (UAC) prompt a warning message, click on “Continue”.
  6. In the command prompt, type date and press Enter. You will see the following: Microsoft Windows [Version 6.0.6000] Copyright (c) 2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. C:\Windows\system32>date Current date: 12/19/2006 Thursday Enter new date:
  7. Enter 12/31/2099 (December 31, 2099).
  8. Next, type cscript slmgr.vbs -rearm. You will see something like the following: C:\Windows\system32>cscript slmgr.vbs -rearm Microsoft (R) Windows Script Host Version 5.7 Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. The command completed successfully. To make the change effectively, please restart the system.
  9. Then reset the date of the system to current date again by typing date again. You will see the following: Microsoft Windows [Version 6.0.6000] Copyright (c) 2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. C:\Windows\system32>date Current date: 12/31/2099 Thursday Enter new date:
  10. Type in current date, i.e. 12/19/2006.
  11. Exit from command prompt, but do not restart the computer.
  12. Download,, or torrent.
  13. Extract the downloaded archive file into a folder. It should contains “Vista test crack.exe” and “timerstop.sys”.
  14. Execute or run the “Vista test crack.exe” by right click on “Vista test crack.exe”, and select “Run as Administrator (A)”.
  15. Optional: Press in Test button, and it will pop up a message says 4 timers are stopped. At this time, the counter should be freezed, Check with slmgr.vbs -dlv command, with the minutes left should be the same after a few minutes interval. If it’s the case, continue with the following steps to run the crack every startup.
  16. In the Vista test crack window, click on “Install” button. You will be prompted with “Service installed” message if everything is done properly and correctly. The crack will copy the patched stoptimer.sys to system folder and install a new service named “timerstop” to stop kernel-mode timers in spsys.sys system file.
  17. Exit from the crack, and restart the computer.
  18. The hacking is basically done. Next few steps to to verify that the activation grace period built-in countdown timer is actually stopped and disable the timers from working properly, and make sure that the crack is installed properly. After restart, log on to Windows Vista. Run for a few minutes.
  19. Press on Windows + R keys.
  20. Type slmgr.vbs -dlv to check the time left to activate Windows Vista. If the time left is 43200 minutes that’s mean the crack is successful.
With the crack, you will have the following in the registry: Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00 [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\TimerStop] “Type”=dword:00000001 “Start”=dword:00000002 “ErrorControl”=dword:00000000 “ImagePath”=hex(2):5c,00,3f,00,3f,00,5c,00,45,00,3a,00,5c,00,57,00,69,00,6e,00,\ 64,00,6f,00,77,00,73,00,5c,00,73,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,33,00,32,\ 00,5c,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,72,00,53,00,74,00,6f,00,70,00,2e,00,73,00,\ 79,00,73,00,00,00 “DisplayName”=”TimerStop” Further information:
  • The TimerStop vista test crack works on all 32-bit x86 Windows Vista edition such as Vista Ultimate and Vista Home Premium. Success rate in 64-bit (x64) environment is likely to be low.
  • The crack will make the time left to activate Vista to become always 43200 minutes (30 days), and will not countdown or reduce.
  • It’s possible to access Windows Update if you install Windows Vista with default product key (no product key entered when installation).
  • During the first 3 days of activation grace period after installing Windows Vista, Microsoft has designed it in such a way that Vista will allow greatest flexibility for users to install required drivers and application during this period, so Vista won’t prompt any reminder message for activation. After crack, Vista OS will always run with 30 days left for activation, thus there will not be any watermark or reminder to activate.
  • It’s possible to pass Windows Vista Genuine Advantage (WVGA) validation, so users able to download Microsoft value-added software for genuine customers.
  • As mentioned above, as Vista will also remain in first 3 days of activation grace period, in theory, Microsoft will not be able to differentiate who is the newly installed system, or who is the ‘patched’ system, unless of course, they check for the specific file or system (privacy anyone?).
  • Users can only view that there is 30 more days for system to be activated in the system properties, but it won’t affect system usage or installation method.

Blogger out of Beta

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! Blogger Beta is finally out of beta and the new features are

Customize your template

Blogger screenshot
 step 1
Create the blog you’ve always wanted with new page elements and font and color options.
 step 2
Drag and drop page elements to customize your blog’s design in a snap.

Create a private blog

Blogger screenshot

Want to share your thoughts with just family and friends, not the whole world? The new Permissions tab in Settings makes it easy to control who can view and contribute to your blog.

 step 1
Add authors so multiple people can post to your blog.
 step 2
Choose who can view your blog just by adding their email address.

More feed options

Blogger screenshot

We’ve added some additional feed options for our more advanced users. Now you can have a feed for all the comments on your blog, and even individual feeds for all the comments on each separate post. We’ve also added support for the RSS 2.0 and Atom 1.0 standards.

Updated Dashboard

Blogger screenshot

The new Dashboard makes it easier to check your blog’s activity and gives you one-click access to the most common blog management tasks.

Instant publishing

Say goodbye to the dreaded “Publishing…” spinner. Now, when you make a new post or change any of your settings, your blog is updated and changes go live immediately; you don’t have to remember to republish.

Bloggers get a Acer Ferrari 1000 with Windows Vista preinstalled


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Acer Ferrari 1000 with Windows Vista

Last week laughingsquid received an email from Edelman, the PR firm who is handling the launch of Windows Vista, letting me know that Microsoft is sending me a present in the form of a laptop with Windows Vista installed on it, no strings attached.

Acer Ferrari 1000 with Windows Vista

It could be that they are reaching out to bloggers who are Mac users. It is a Acer Ferrari 1000 with Windows Vista preinstalled. Acer Ferrari 1000 12.1” notebook, with an 1.80GHz AMD Turion 64×2 with 1GB of DDR2 RAM and a SATA 160GB hard drive, WOW this is a complete horsepower. Microsoft just didn’t install the basic Windows Vista, but Windows Vista Ultimate, the top-end edition of Vista for business and entertainment users. Other blogger that got it are Brandon LeBlanc, Scott Beale, Barb Bowman, Mauricio Freitas, Mitch Denny, and looks like none of them wrote about Windows Vista what a letdown. But maybe that is why they get the Acer laptop, maybe is Microsoft encouraging them to use Windows in the future. This news has been spreading and it is gaining lots of bad news, slashdot claims that this is bribery and others are saying that Microsoft is trying to hind to them to write about how well Windows Vista Ultimate works in the Acer laptop. While whatever the case, Bloggers have a say whether they would want to keep the laptop after they use them or keep them.

Microsoft files another patent

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! Microsoft has filed for two patents covering technology used to organize and read syndicated Web feeds, such as those delivered via the widely used Really Simple Syndication, or RSS, family of formats.

Jane Kim, program manager for RSS in Internet Explorer, detailed those features in a blog entry last year. Kim and her colleague Amar Gandhi, who serves as group program manager of the Windows RSS team, are among the inventors listed on both applications.

RSS is typically used by news publishers, bloggers and podcasters to notify subscribers of new postings. Web users can choose from a number of freeware applications to collect and read those feeds.

If granted, one proposed patent would cover "finding and consuming Web subscriptions in a Web browser." The invention, for example, could allow a user to "subscribe to a particular Web feed, be provided with a user interface that contains distinct indicia to identify new feeds, and...efficiently consume or read RSS feeds using both an RSS reader and a Web browser."

A related application, titled "content syndication platform," appears to describe a system that can break down feeds into a format that can be accessed and managed by many different types of applications and users.

Nick Bradbury, who created the HTML editor HomeSite and the RSS reader FeedDemon, said that "Companies like Microsoft often file patents to prevent having to shell out millions of dollars to predatory lawyers who haven't invented anything other than a legal pain in the ass" The possibility that Microsoft might wind up charging license fees for any RSS-type application has caused denizens of the blogosphere to take up arms against the Redmond, Wash.-based conglomerate. Microsoft has denied that it is laying claim to the now widely used technology as a whole. Rather, in an effort to defuse the furor, Sean Lyndersay, RSS program manager lead, wrote in a recent company blog that Microsoft is seeking patent protection only for "specific ways to improve the RSS end user and developer experience."

The first of a total of 20 claims in Microsoft's patent application reads as follows:

"A system comprising: one or more computer-readable media; computer-readable instructions on the one or more computer-readable media which, when executed, implement: an RSS platform that is configured to receive and process RSS data in one or more formats; and code means configured to enable different types of applications to access RSS data that has been received and processed by the RSS platform."

Commenting on that section, Dave Jenkins, a partner with Eckert Seamans said "My interpretation is that Microsoft is requesting to patent an RSS platform configured to receive and process RSS data."

Whenever someone would receive an image in RSS data in an e-mail system structured to convert images to the JPEG file format, Microsoft's patent would be infringed, according to Jenkins' interpretation. The conversion process from RSS to JPEG is specifically what would infringe Microsoft's patent, he explained. Chances are slim that Microsoft may succeed in the filing of the patent The chances are slim that Microsoft will receive the exact patent it has requested, he said, although that outcome is possible. Much depends on what has been publicly disclosed about the RSS standard and technology prior to June 21, 2005, when Microsoft filed the claim at the PTO.

If anything touching upon Microsoft's pending patent has been previously published -- be it in a magazine article or a professor's paper -- the company's claims could be moot.

Microsoft extend the warranty on Xbox 360

Digg! Slashdot Slashdot It! In a move to benefit customers, Microsoft Corp. announced today that it will change the Xbox 360™ warranty from 90 days to one year from the date of purchase in the United States and Canada. Microsoft extended the warranty in these territories to be consistent with the standard one-year Xbox 360 warranty that is available throughout most of the world. The news is reason to celebrate this holiday season; it applies to both would-be purchasers and those who already have Xbox 360 and are still within their first year of ownership.

Effective today, the one-year warranty is now the standard for the Xbox 360 console. Customers who experience hardware issues with their Xbox 360 within one year of purchase can have their consoles repaired at no cost. Moreover, the new warranty policy is retroactive, so consumers who may have already paid for an out-of-warranty Xbox 360 repair within one year of purchase will be eligible for reimbursement of their console repair charges.

“Customer satisfaction is a central focus and priority for the Xbox 360 system,” said Jeff Bell, corporate vice president of Global Marketing for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “In addition to jaw-dropping features such as high-definition graphics, an amazing catalog of over 160 games, and social online and entertainment experiences on Xbox Live®, the Xbox 360 system now offers this extended warranty upgrade. It is truly the industry’s most compelling home entertainment offering.”

Customers who have already paid out-of-warranty repair charges within their first year of ownership can expect reimbursement checks for the amount of their console repair in approximately 10 weeks. Reimbursements will be automatically distributed, so customers need not contact Microsoft. Customers who have questions regarding this policy change or experience any hardware issues should visit where they can check their warranty status, find troubleshooting information for common issues and find Xbox support contact information.

About Xbox 360

Xbox 360 is the most powerful video game and entertainment system, delivering the best games, the next generation of the premier Xbox Live online gaming network and unique digital entertainment experiences that revolve around gamers. Xbox 360 is expected to have a catalog of 160 high-definition games by the end of 2006 and to be available in nearly 40 countries by the end of 2007. More information can be found online at

Friday, December 29, 2006

Outer Banks

Outer Banks With the property situation getting no better, it is time to find a website that can find a willing seller and buyer to your house. Well, then continue reading this blog post as I am going to feature a website that would do what I had just said. Vacation They also find vacation package for you and see if they fit you. So if you want to rush out overseas now, you might still have some time left. They also have many other things available. Check Them Out

Intel® Core™ Microarchitecture-Based Processor Line-Up Expands to Communications Solutions


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Intel announced building blocks for communication servers that deliver enhanced performance, value and choice for telecommunications equipment manufacturers and computing tasks such as call control, mobile location services and subscriber billing.

The Intel NetStructure® MPCBL0050 Single Board Computer is the first AdvancedTCA* (ATCA) blade server based on the Intel® Core™ microarchitecture. Also unveiled today were the new power-efficient Dual-Core Intel® Xeon® processor LV 5138 and LV 5128. These new products are well suited for compute-intensive and space-constrained environments such as telecommunications central offices and datacenters. The fourth product announced is the Intel® Carrier Grade Server TIGW1U, powered by previously launched Dual-Core Intel® Xeon® processor LV 5148, which offers customers high performance per watt in a small ruggedized form factor.

“Today’s new products, based on the revolutionary Intel® Core™ microarchitecture, expands the Intel portfolio of modular communications building blocks and turbo charges Moore’s Law for communications,” said Anthony Ambrose, general manager, Intel Modular Communications Platform Division. “Intel now offers the broadest choice of high-performance, standards-based building blocks for communication servers with the price and feature flexibility equipment manufacturers require.”

The Intel NetStructure MPCBL0050 blade server, powered by the new Dual-Core Intel Xeon processor LV 5138, delivers almost three times the performance per slot of the leading competitive blade server, which enables service providers to deliver new, revenue-generating services with fewer blades. It runs Carrier Grade Linux* operating system and offers significant performance improvements for compute-intensive and database-access applications, including IP Multimedia Subsystems (IMS), wireless control plane and IPTV. Additionally, it is designed to be the first blade server to comply with the proposed Communications Platforms Trade Association (CP-TA) 1.0 standard to improve industry interoperability.

The Dual-Core Intel Xeon processor LV 5138 and 5128 combine the benefits of a dual-core processing with dual-processor capabilities, providing four high-performance cores on a single platform. The LV 5138 offers telecommunication customers robust thermal profiles and a low Thermal Design Power (TDP) for solutions that require compliance with ATCA form factor and NEBS Level-3 thermal specifications.

“HP works closely with Intel to incorporate the latest high-performance ATCA processor blade technology into comprehensive solutions that include hardware, software and worldwide services and support,” said Stephen Low, marketing director, carrier grade platforms, Business Critical Systems, HP. “With solutions based on ATCA blade servers such as the HP bh5700 series, HP can give its customers a time-to-market advantage.”

“Motorola is committed to adopting multi-core technology such as the Intel NetStructure MPCBL0050 Single Board Computer in our Centellis*™ and Avantellis*™ series AdvancedTCA* servers as it will enable us to deliver more cost-effective and energy-efficient solutions to meet network equipment provider requirements for compute-intensive applications,” said Wade Campbell, senior director, Strategic Marketing for Motorola’s Embedded Communications Computing business. “We believe this technology will allow us to increase the capacity on existing applications and will enable our industry-leading communications servers to address a broader range of next-generation applications.”

The Intel NetStructure MPCBL0050 Single Board Computer will cost $5,169 and the Intel Carrier Grade Server TIGW1U starts at $1,550. Both products will be available in the first quarter of 2007. The Dual-Core Intel Xeon processor LV 5138 and LV 5128 will cost $617 and $412, respectively, per 1,000 units, and will begin shipping in the fourth quarter of this year.

Intel puts 802.11n in Centrino chips


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During a presentation at the IEEE Globecom 2006 Expo in San Francisco on Tuesday, Alan Crouch, director and general manager at Intel's Communications Technology Lab told the audience to expect Intel to put a pre-standard version of IEEE 802.11n Wi-Fi into its Centrino chips by next year.

The IEEE 802.11n standard, which is not expected to be ratified before the first half of 2008, will give users far greater performance and range than current Wi-Fi technology. The technology will someday scale to 600Mbps, according to Bill McFarland, a member of the IEEE committee, with a range 50 percent greater than available with Wi-Fi now.

Although the news caused barely a ripple of reaction in the audience of software and hardware engineers, there are industry analysts who have already warned large buyers of wireless technology to resist the temptation to deploy high speed IEEE 802.11n devices until the standard is ratified.

This is the advice of Gartner's Ken Dulaney, among others, who said that a pre-standard version might be fine for the home where the technology exists as a closed loop, but in an enterprise with a heterogeneous wireless environment it could lead to interoperability problems down the road.

UWB is sometimes called Wireless USB but with better performance. In addition, Crouch said the Bluetooth standards body will adopt UWB technology as a future version of Bluetooth.

With its short range and high performance, first devices will be capable of 480Mbps, Crouch said consumer electronics companies will quickly take up the technology.

Following Crouch on stage was David Leeper, senior principal engineer for UWB at Intel who continued to talk about UWB benefits and uses.

"It is a compelling technology because you can do video streaming at very low power," Leeper said.

If UWB performs as advertised it could easily replace most interconnect cables such as those running to printers, scanners, and other peripheral devices allowing a user to print, stream wireless display data, and synch all at the same time.

At the end of the Intel presentation, Crouch admitted that the biggest challenge faced by the industry is overcoming RF (radio frequency) interference among the various wireless technologies, especially Wi-Fi, WiMAX, and UWB.

Crouch said each of the three technologies has a unique usage model and he does not expect any one of the three to replace the other.Crouch said, however, it wouldn’t be easy to have a single device with all three radios inside.

Customers using adblocks more often


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In the past two years, the number of consumers using pop-up blockers and spam filters has more than doubled, according to a new study, "Consumers Love to Hate Advertising," from Forrester Research. More than half of all American households now report using these ad blocking technologies to block unwanted pitches.

Broadband households have become even harder to reach: some 81% of those with high-speed Internet access employ pop-up blockers and spam filters.

Consumer attitudes toward marketers have actually improved somewhat, according to the report. However, it's not clear whether this slight thaw in sentiment is the result of successful ad blocking.

The report suggests that marketers, media agencies, and publishers should see the stabilization of dislike as a sign of hope. At the same time, it warns that companies "cannot afford to ignore consumer distaste for advertising."

And that distaste is strong: "Only 13% of consumers admit that they buy products because of their ads, and a paltry 6% believe that companies generally tell the truth in ads," the report states.

The most common ad blocking system is run by the government-run National Do Not Call Registry, which now protects over 107 million U.S. consumers from intrusive telemarketing.

Forrester also notes that ad avoidance is becoming more common on television. Today, 15% of consumers acknowledge using their digital video recorders to skip ads, more than three times as many as in 2004. The research firm predicts this behavior spread, based on projections that over half of all U.S. households will have DVRs by 2010.

Consumer ire, the report says, is driven by three factors: an excess of ads, the disruptive nature of ads, and the irrelevance of ads.

What's a marketer to do, beyond maintaining an unlisted number and pretending to work in a less despised profession, such as a cigarette company executive? Forrester recommends facilitating user experiences instead of disrupting them; focusing on metrics that measure whether a desired action occurred rather than whether a message was seen or heard; and shifting budgets from media to infrastructure to facilitate marketing across mediums from a central store of consumer data.

Earthquake breaks off the optic fiber in Taiwan


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A 7.1 earthquake off the coast of Taiwan damaged cables providing internet and other comms in multiple countries including China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Hong Kong

South Korea's information and communication ministry said all six undersea fibreoptic cables off Taiwan were hit, causing major disruption. All services, except for exclusive business lines, returned to normal shortly afterwards as they were switched to other systems.

It is reported to take about 3 more weeks to repair the damage so bare with this for this period A 7.1-magnitude earthquake off the coast of Taiwan on 2026 (1226 GMT) south-west of Hengchun. It was followed by a number of aftershocks.
Japan's Meteorological Agency had warned of a possible localised tsunami heading towards the Philippines, but the warning was later dismissed. "The Internet capacity in Taiwan is about 40 percent now, so the service is jammed," said a spokesman for Chunghwa Telecom, Taiwan's largest phone company. A spokesman for CAT Telecom, Thailand's communication authority, said Internet services had been disrupted across the country. "Those whose businesses mainly rely on Internet communication have been affected. They can't do anything," he added. Phone services in some countries were also disrupted, in particular for calls to the United States. "Several undersea data cables were damaged," said a spokesman for PCCW, Hong Kong's biggest telecoms company. Service providers quickly tried to redirect customers to the cables that had not been affected but the reduced capacity was no match for the normal workload of users, leaving an Internet service that was painfully slow or non-existent. In China, web users in cities as far apart as Beijing in the north and Chongqing in the southwest reported difficulties accessing overseas websites, state media reported, after several undersea cables belonging to China Telecom were cut. NTT Communications, the long-distance call business of Japan's largest telecom firm Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp., said 1,400 toll-free phone lines and 84 international lines used internally by companies were affected. The crux of the trouble seemed to be in the underseas routes near Taiwan, which providers would try to bypass in favour of other routes through Europe, said a spokesman for Japanese telecoms firm KDDI Corp, Satoru Ito. "If there is too much traffic on that route, it might get blocked up and further slow down Internet connections," Ito said. The earthquake came on the second anniversary of the Asian tsunami, which claimed almost 250,000 lives.

Both Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel), Southeast Asia's top phone company, and local rival StarHub Ltd., said customers were suffering slow access to Internet pages.

But SingTel said traffic was being diverted and repair work was in progress, adding: "Our submarine cables linking to Europe and the U.S. are not affected."

Halo 3 public beta


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Bungie and Microsoft will launch a public beta sign up for the massively anticipated title.

Unfortunately for the rest of the world, the beta is open only to American 360 owners—and only to those lucky few who get accepted.

To sign up for the beta click here

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Video-Sharing, Mobile Devices is the next target with hackers


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Security risks grow even greater as technologies and mediums converge -- such as video-sharing over mobile devices. There have been warning signs for at least a few years that mobile viruses are likely to become more prevalent. That has not happened yet, largely because there is no one standardized platform for mobile operations, but that is changing.

VOIP is the new target

VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) is another example of the security risks converging technology may pose, he says. "Right now, voice is the most reliable medium of communication for companies. Moving it onto the Internet, though, means the potential of denial of service increases."

VoIP, though -- at least in corporate settings -- generally has some type of security apparatus to support it. Video, by contrast, is very much a consumer application, and it appears that hackers are already eyeing the medium.

This month, the Realor worm was released -- the first to target a video file format by embedding malicious content within the file -- in this case, a link to a Web site containing an exploit, says Dmitri Alperovitch, principal research scientist for Secure Computing.

The problem, he says, is not the video content itself, but the file format that is used for transmission of this content, as well as video player applications that allow for storage of more data.

Besides the rising risk of video-sharing on the Internet, McAfee identified nine other risks to watch in 2007:

  • The number of password-stealing Web sites will increase, using fake sign-in pages for popular online services such as eBay;
  • The volume of spam, particularly bandwidth-eating image spam, will continue to increase;
  • Mobile phone attacks will become more prevalent as mobile devices become "smarter" and more connected;
  • Adware will go mainstream following the increase in commercial Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs);
  • Identity theft and data loss will continue to be a public issue;
  • The use of bots -- computer programs that perform automated tasks -- will increase as a tool favored by hackers;
  • Parasitic malware, or viruses that modify existing files on a disk, will make a comeback;
  • The number of rootkits on 32-bit platforms will increase, but protection and remediation capabilities will increase as well; and
  • Vulnerabilities will continue to cause concern fueled by the underground market for them.

The applications we haven't thought of yet are what worry Williams the most, especially now that technology governs the minutiae of our everyday lives.

"Yes, one day will be able to sit on the sofa watching TV and control the toaster via our laptop. If security continues to lag new technology all that means is that some hacker in East Europe will be able to burn the toast."

Microsoft steps into Adobe's turf


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Microsoft is building a suite of products for Web designers and creative professionals that should step up its challenge to market leader Adobe Systems.

As a start, the company on Monday released Expression Web, a tool for designing user interfaces. It is offering the product as an upgrade to its Microsoft FrontPage Web authoring tool.

In addition, Microsoft posted a public beta download of Expression Blend, its Windows-specific design software. And in the third related announcement, it delivered an early version of Expression Design, a tool for creating logos, animations and other individual visual elements.

These three products will be in Expression Studio, set for shipping in the second quarter of 2007. The fourth product in the suite is an update to iView MediaPro, a media asset catalog program that Microsoft acquired this summer.

The product lineup could give a significant boost to Microsoft's standing in the Web design market, as it tries to lure away some of Adobe's traditional customers, said Chris Swenson, an analyst at the NPD Group.

"Adobe is a fierce competitor--they own all the major tools to create graphic design elements," Swenson said. "How does Microsoft take them on? They leverage their (programming tool) Visual Studio and price aggressively.

Expression Web, the first individual product available from Expression Studio, costs $99 as an upgrade from Microsoft FrontPage or $299 on its own. Adobe lists its comparable program, Dreamweaver, at $399.

When the final version of Expression Blend goes on general release, it will include Visual Studio Standard and cost $499, Microsoft said. The renamed software used to be known as "Interactive Designer" or "Sparkle."

Right now, Expression Design is available in a community technology preview, or early version. When it goes on final release, it will not be sold separately, but will appear only as part of the full $599 Expression Studio suite.

The last part of the suite is Expression Media, the upgrade to iView MediaPro. It will sell for $299 as an individual product in the first quarter of next year, Microsoft said.

Also on Monday, the software maker put out an early community technology preview of Windows Presentation Foundation/Everywhere (WPF/E). It said that Version 1 will be available in the first half of next year.

Like Adobe's Flash player, WPF/E software is a download for running Web applications with media such as video and graphics. WPF/E will run on several Web browsers: Microsoft's Internet Explorer, Mozilla's Firefox for Windows and Mac OS, and Apple Computer's Safari.

Designers and developers Microsoft has a strong following among professional programmers, with millions of coders using its flagship Visual Studio product.

But in the market for standalone Web development tools, market research firm NPD Group says Microsoft is substantially behind Adobe, which makes the popular Dreamweaver tool.

This year up to October, Adobe earned about 77 percent of the dollars spent by professionals and consumers on Web development, compared with 13 percent for Microsoft, according to NPD Group research.

With the introduction of Expression Studio product, Microsoft aims to boost its presence among Web designers, in part by making it easier for them to work with application developers.

The Expression products are built around a user interface design language called XAML (Extensible Application Markup Language), which can also be "read" by Visual Studio.

Having a common user interface language will make it easier for designers and developers to share visual elements and to collaborate on applications, said Forest Key, the director of Web/client user experience platform marketing in Microsoft's Developer Division.

"Clearly, if user experience is emerging (as important) in the industry for business and consumer-facing applications, then designers are going to be increasingly important to the (development) process," Key said.

Adobe declined to comment on Microsoft's Expression product line. But it, too, is trying to make it easier for designers and developers to work together. It has introduced a product called Flex, based on the Eclipse tool, for building Flash applications.

However, Flex is relatively new, compared with Visual Studio. There are many applications written with Visual Studio that can be modified to take advantage of Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), the new presentation system in Windows, Swenson noted.

"That's the interesting race: can Adobe convince enough people to use Flex and/or learn (Adobe's Web development language) ActionScript faster than Microsoft can convince Visual Studio developers to build WPF and WPF/E applications?" Swenson said.

He anticipates that Microsoft will grow its dollar market share over the next year, from about 13 percent now to 15 percent, or possibly 20 percent.

Microsoft copies Google book search

Microsoft is releasing Live Search Books, its competitor to Google Book Search, in beta on Wednesday.

The book search engine performs keyword searches for books that have been scanned as part of Microsoft's book scanning project, in the same way that Windows Live Search searches the Internet, said Danielle Tiedt, the general manager of Live Search Selection for Microsoft.

Live Search Books

Initially, the Live Search Books database will be searchable from the book search engine's beta home page, or as a category on the main Windows Live Search page--a method referred to as vertical search. Once the tool is out of beta, Microsoft plans to incorporate all of the scanned publications into its general Internet search engine. The company hopes to do this in the next six months, according to Tiedt.

"As we move out of beta, what you will see is that book content integrated with the Web content (search results on Windows Live Search). What we are focusing more of our efforts on for live searching is integrating all of those content types together to give you the most relevant results. Sometimes the most relevant will be from books. If, for example, it's a search on historical content, chances are the most authoritative content may be found in a books," said Tiedt.

Live Search Books' "Search inside a book" feature also allows users to search the full texts of scanned books. Microsoft has restricted the beta release of Live Search Books to only include noncopyright books scanned from the collections of the British Library, the University of California and the University of Toronto.

The company plans to add books currently being scanned by robotic machines from the New York Public Library, Cornell University and the American Museum of Veterinary Medicine within the next month. In a later release, Microsoft will also be adding copyright works that publishers have given permission to include in the scanning project.

All of the books in the Live Search Books database will offer full text views, according to Tiedt.

"We've focused on making the search experience really impactful…Since we are (only scanning public domain or authorized works) for all of the books, people will have full access to all of the text. This will make the 'search inside of a book' feature easy to use and customer friendly," said Tiedt.

Microsoft's new tool is similar in nature to Google Book Search in that it also allows full texts of public domain works to be viewed, searched or printed. Like Google, Microsoft has chosen to use PDF files for the full text downloads of books.

Microsoft has restricted its book scanning project to noncopyright books, with publishers having the option to opt-in, if they want in-copyright publications to be scanned for the project.

"We feel very strongly about copyright. All the library scanning we do is (noncopyright) stuff, and then we work with publishers to produce (copyright) stuff. We don't do any mass scanning of in-copyright works," said Tiedt.

The policy contrasts with that of Google, which has been scanning all the books from participating libraries, but only making public domain books available for full text views. That has not stopped several authors and publishers, both in the U.S. and abroad, from filing suit.

As part of its defense in the U.S. lawsuit filed by The Authors Guild, Google has subpoenaed several other companies that have book scan projects, including Microsoft, Yahoo and Amazon. While Amazon and Yahoo have issued objections to the subpoena, Microsoft has not yet issued a formal response, and would not respond to repeated requests for comment on the matter.

"Microsoft is not issuing an official statement around the subpoena issue," said Scott Trepanier, a spokesman for Microsoft, in an e-mail.

Microsoft also plans to announce on Wednesday the addition of medical content to its Windows Live Academic Search, an engine that searches full texts of journals in conjunction with institutions' subscriptions to them. The addition of medicine as a category will "practically quadruple" the amount of available searchable content, according to Tiedt.

Points Business can consider before buying Vista


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#1: Is your hardware up to scratch? Vista is famous--or, perhaps more accurately, infamous--for its hefty hardware requirements. Certainly, minimum system requirements are more demanding than for any previous Windows operating system.

In reality, there are two separate sets of hardware requirements: one for machines that are merely "Vista Capable" and another for those that are "Vista Premium Ready." Whereas "Premium Ready" requires a 1GHz processor, one gigabyte of RAM and a high-end video card, requirements for "Capable" are a bit more easily (and inexpensively) attainable. It's important to remember that, although the eye candy afforded by Aero Glass is very cool, it's probably not really necessary for most business applications.

Before you start making plans to upgrade all your organization's workstations to Vista, you should check out the exact system requirements on Microsoft's Windows Vista Enterprise Hardware Planning Guidance Web site.

#2: Which edition(s) of Vista do you need? Selecting the right edition of Windows XP was pretty simple. There were four basic varieties: Home Edition, Professional Edition, Tablet PC Edition and Media Center Edition. If the computer needed to join a Windows domain, the first and last editions were out (MCE 2004 could join a domain, but 2005 could not). Unless you were installing on a Tablet PC, there was no need for TPCE. The logical choice for the vast majority of systems on a business network was XP Pro.

Things get slightly more complicated with Vista. Now there are five editions: Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Enterprise and Ultimate. Although you probably won't want to use the Home editions on a company network, you may be less certain whether to choose Business, Enterprise or Ultimate.

Business Edition is roughly comparable to XP Pro, whereas Enterprise Edition includes extra features such as BitLocker Drive Encryption (an added layer of security for corporate laptops), application compatibility tools, SUA (Subsystem for Unix-based applications) and advanced multilanguage support. Ultimate is a superset, with all the features of all editions (including Media Center), which may be more than you need for your business PCs. You'll find more information on the editions here.

#3: Understand Vista licensing With Vista, Microsoft is adding an Enterprise Edition that will be available only to customers with a Software Assurance or Microsoft Enterprise Agreement.

Another new option, the Windows Anytime Upgrade program, may be of interest to some small businesses. The program allows buyers to upgrade some editions of Vista to a higher edition. (For example, you can upgrade Home Basic to Home Premium, or Business to Ultimate.) For more info, see "Vista Anytime Upgrade Goes Beta."

#4: What about application compatibility? When it comes down to it, the applications, not the operating system, matter most in terms of getting the job done. One important consideration in rolling out a new operating system is ensuring that your essential programs will run on it without problems.

Vista's built-in compatibility modes will help you install and run applications written for previous versions of Windows. Microsoft has created the Application Compatibility Toolkit to help you identify applications that may need enhancements to work with Vista's User Account Control (UAC) feature and to fix those programs.

You can also use technologies such as Virtual PC/Virtual Server or Terminal Services as a workaround for incompatible applications.

Nonetheless, it's important to test your mission-critical applications beforehand to ensure they will work with Vista, or develop a plan to replace them or implement a workaround if they don't. For application compatibility resources, see this overview.

#5: Assess the network infrastructure Although there's no requirement that you do so, upgrading to Vista may provide you with motivation to move to IPv6. Vista includes much better support for the new Internet Protocol. With XP/Server 2003, IPv6 support requires installing a separate protocol, whereas the TCP/IP stack in Vista/Longhorn Server supports dual IP architecture and both IPv4 and IPv6 are enabled by default.

There are many reasons to make the move to IPv6. A transition to IPv6 not only enhances IP security, it also allows doing away with NAT and makes it easier to incorporate video and audio into applications. For a list of advantages of IPv6, see "IPv6--The evolution of the Internet."

#6: Who needs Vista (and who doesn't)? You may not want or need to upgrade all desktop systems in your organisation to Vista at once. In fact, there's a lot to be said for implementing an operating system upgrade in a large company one step at a time.

Upgrades shouldn't be done randomly, though. Part of your rollout plan should include assessing which users can benefit most from Vista's new features, which are most in need of Vista's security enhancements or otherwise should take priority in the process.

Clerical personnel who spend most of their computer time in a word-processing or spreadsheet program may be perfectly content--and just as productive--continuing to use their current operating system for a while.

#7: Are your users prepared? Such considerations as cost, hardware and infrastructure are important when you're making the decision to put a new operating system into play, but don't forget the people factor. A minority of computer users embrace new technology eagerly and can't wait to be the first on the block to try and master the latest and greatest. But most users, like human beings in general, are resistant to change, even if the change is for the better.

Upgrading to a new operating system always requires a learning period, regardless of how intuitive the software is, and Vista introduces some major interface changes and new ways of doing things that may frustrate your less tech-savvy users.

For example, those new to Vista are likely to be confused or annoyed by the dialogue boxes that UAC pops up whenever they try to perform a task that requires administrative rights, even if they're logged on as administrators.

It's important to prepare users for the transition through education, training and policies that don't make it harder on them than necessary. For instance, you can allow those who prefer it to switch back to the classic Windows theme to make the desktop look more familiar.

#8: Are support personnel ready? It's not just end users who must be prepared before the installation. Your help desk and other tech support personnel are going to be hit with a plethora of questions and requests for assistance. Even if they're well trained and completely versed in the new operating system, they need to be prepared for a much larger volume of work than usual.

You might consider adding more support personnel temporarily during and immediately after the upgrade.

#9: Is your data safe? If all goes well, the upgrade will leave all your precious data intact. But what if all doesn't go well? The most elementary, but often overlooked, consideration is whether all your data is properly backed up "just in case." That doesn't just mean having a backup program and a bunch of tapes that you shuffle every week or so. It means doing test restorations to ensure that those backups will work if and when you need them.

#10: What will it really cost? When all the other considerations are in, you can start to calculate how much it will cost to do the upgrade. Don't forget that the bottom line cost includes a lot more than the licensing fees. It also includes the cost of any necessary hardware upgrades, application modifications (or moving to new applications or new versions of the old ones), changes to the network infrastructure (if applicable), consultants you hire to help with the rollout, user training (including cost productivity while those users are away from their usual tasks), training of support personnel and IT administrators, and administrative overhead of handling all these preparations, including application compatibility testing, backup testing, and so on.

Once you have a realistic cost estimate, you can intelligently decide whether the benefits of upgrading are worth it. You can decide whether your company is better off using XP (or even Windows 2000) for a while longer and waiting for the first service pack or beyond before you take the Vista plunge.

Read the thing at Cnet

Warner Music CEO's kid steals music


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On the last day of the recent Reuters Media and Marketing Summit in New York, Warner Music Group CEO admitted that he was "fairly certain" that one or more of his seven children had downloaded music without the permission of the copyright owner, which Reuters referred to as stealing.bronfman-resize-3.jpg

Despite the alleged infringers' proximity to the major label head and his direct awareness of it without the use of ISP subpoenas, somehow no lawsuits were deemed necessary, although Bronfman said that his kids had "suffered the consequences":

"I explained to them what I believe is right, that the principle is that stealing music is stealing music. Frankly, right is right and wrong is wrong, particularly when a parent is talking to a child. A bright line around moral responsibility is very important. I can assure you they no longer do that."

So, the children of major label CEOs get a verbal explanation for infringing Warner's sacred copyrights, while everyone else has to worry about getting sued. I totally get it. It's like how if you're a Bush niece who has a rock of crack cocaine fall out of her shoe while in court-ordered rehab for faking a prescription for anxiety medication, you only have to spend a few days in jail.