Remember the Windows Genuine Advantage debacle?

Subject: General Tech | February 12, 2010 - 11:31 AM |

Like some sort of bad horror movie villain that keeps coming back from the dead, another phone-home validation program is arriving from Microsoft.  Back in the days of Windows 98 it was the Critical Update Notification Tool that checked for updates but also opened up the possibility of serious security breaches, not to mention that checking every 5 minutes was a little excessive.  With Windows 2000 and XP, we saw the beginning of the Windows Genuine Advantage program, which was intended to keep people honest and drive them to purchase Microsoft's OS instead of pirating it.  Unfo

Source: Slashdot

In house benchmarking tool for AMD's hexacores

Subject: General Tech | February 11, 2010 - 11:25 AM |

AMD's new server benchmarking tool may not come in handy the next time you are testing a family PC, but if you run servers or clusters of servers then you may be visiting that page quite a bit.  What everyone will like to see is the results AMD has published from these benchmarks detailing the performance of six core processors and soon to be eight core processors.  The benchmarks may or may not be biased, it is hard to tell without the hardware in hand to test ourselves but they certainly are impressive.  It is also quite nice to see dual socket systems included;

Source: The Inquirer

Valentine's Day U135 Giveaway

Subject: General Tech | February 10, 2010 - 01:26 PM |

To celebrate Valentine's Day, MSI is giving you the chance to win one of three U135 Ruby-colored 10” netbooks, each worth $329!

To enter, follow these three simple steps:

1) Join the MSI Computer U.S. Facebook group

2) Become a follower of msiUSA on Twitter

Source: MSI

Google wants to give you Gigabit internet

Subject: General Tech | February 10, 2010 - 01:16 PM |

The rumours of Google's plans to become a service provider have gained some veracity with this announcement from the Google Blog.  They are requesting applications from US cities to participate in a test roll out of a 1 Gb/s fiber-to-the-home
service.  Eventually they plan to offer this service at a competitive price to at least 50,000 and potentially up to 500,000 people, so the space is fairly limited.  They are looking to hear from local governments as well as priva

You can go home again, if your Daddy is Big enough

Subject: General Tech | February 10, 2010 - 12:17 PM |

There are any number of gamers in Rapture right now, both emotionally and virtually, as the sequel to BioShock hits the stores.  If you have been hiding with the rock crabs, then you won't know that BioShock 2 puts you in the boots of the original Big Daddy in Rapture 10 years after the events of the first game took place.  There are still Little Sisters, but now some of them have grown up with a bad attitude and an armour suit and are looking to make your life miserable.  Seeing as how you are in the biggest, baddest diving suit ever you can expect to see a more close up view o

Source: Ars Technica

Warning: do not attempt to use the new Dremel 4000 as Kleenex

Subject: General Tech | February 10, 2010 - 12:01 PM |

MaximumCPU has taken a break from reviewing silicon based products in favour of a handy tool that belongs in anyones kit.  If you do not yet have a Dremel, the new Dremel 4000 will run you less $100 which is not a bad investment for a tool you are likely to fall in love with.  At that price
you also pick up 55 various cutting wheels, grinders, polishers and drill bits, enough t

Source: Maximum CPU

More information on Llano. Thank you; come again.

Subject: General Tech | February 9, 2010 - 12:03 PM |

AMD has named their hybrid CPU-GPU with on-die graphics an APU, and the first chip family is named Llano.  It is being fabbed at Global Foundries and it turns out to be a 32nm high-k + metal gate, SOI process chip.  The first model we will see will be a quad-core processor, along with the on-die graphics of course.

Source: AnandTech

Can HTML 5 inflict a critical on Flash?

Subject: General Tech | February 8, 2010 - 03:25 PM |

If you have yet to try out HTML 5, through Vimeo, YouTube or other sites you really should give it a go.  This is the new improved version of HTML that Steve Jobs has bet the farm on with the iPad and iPhone.  Streaming video is the most common way to encounter this relatively new standard and you benefit from a better caching system and reduced CPU utilization but there is far more to it than that.  The Tech Report explores some of these uses, from bringing Wolfenstein3D to the web to an image editor with t

Since when do professionals that are wrong far more than they are right get their own day?

Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2010 - 06:39 PM |

As you get to know more about PCs and are comfortable with the various components you begin to realize that there is a lot more to learn.  If you've decided to put together an AMD based system, you might stumble upon a term you haven't before, like TDP.  Right now many of AMDs parts are 125W or 140W, but do you know what that means, or more importantly what effect will it have on your system overall?  Maybe you are building an Intel machine and stumble upon a term like PAE when you are trying to determ