Tuesday Feb 27, 2007

So long Vista

I've about had it up to here with a few things with Vista and I'm going to bring a couple of machines back down to XP.

Some of these are problems with the lack of available software provided by Sun, some third party software, and some drivers for the hardware.

First and formost, the Acer Ferrari refuses to sleep properly.  Sure Acer has a bios update but their WinFlash only runs on 32 bit windows.  I loaded the 64 bit version of Vista to take advantage (?) of my 64 bit chip.  The version they provide for 64 bit XP will not load the new bios either.  They don't provide a non-windows method (i.e. a DOS boot disk) method of upgrading the bios so I have to go back to Windows XP just to upgrade the bios that would (hopefully) allow the unit to sleep properly.  Yeah, that make sense.  I've had two major issues with this unit overheating and I'm not going to go through that again.

Acer has supplied very few drivers for Vista for the 4005 and only 32 bit versions.  The media access card is useless as well as the bluetooth under 64 bit.  As an added touch, Acer seems to love to throttle downloads to 11KB.

I can't sync anything.  Not my phone, not my wife's iPod (and she's been bugging me to get some new music on there for her).  While iTunes runs just fine, the iPod helper service just can't seem to talk to iTunes.  I've even tried starting the service as Administrator as well as running iTunes with the Run as Administrator switch.  I can't even get pictures from my Nikon's SD card without having to hookup a Dazzle SD to USB reader.

UAC is about the most annoying thing I've ever seen.  Sure I can turn it off, then I have to deal with the MS Security Center bugging me in my task bar.  I could also turn off the security center too I suppose.

MusicMatch doesn't work and there's no word on an update.  You like iTunes, I like MusicMatch.  I did find Foobar2000 but it lacks the SuperTagging feature that I've come to enjoy from MusicMatch.  No, I'm not letting Windows Media Player 11 manage my Music.

No virus protection.  Sure Symantec has an upgraded version, but Sun doesn't supply it.  Same for Cisco VPN client.  It was fun to mess around with a new OS, but in that's all I was really doing...messing around.  I don't do much gaming, but I'm sure if I did I'd be out of luck mainly due to 64 bit.

I just wish OpenSolaris would run this stupid Broadcom Wireless card in 64 bit mode.  Next time I choose a laptop, I won't be fooled by the lure of a 64 bit chip and aesthetics and will most likely stick with Toshiba...And OpenSolaris.  And if I need Windows on said laptop, there's always Win4Solaris.

In fact, who needs a laptop.  My computing life was much easier when it was at the repair depot and I was 100% Sun Ray.  Of course I couldn't sit in my easy chair with the Sun Ray (not with what I have anyhow), but a geek has got to get his excercise somehow.


Tuesday Jan 30, 2007

Vista OneCare Offer Expects Time Travel

I guess proof-reading is not important for the Vista launch.  As seen from an email received today:


Monday Jan 29, 2007

Vista 64 Upgrade Warning

A lot of articles popping up on Vista requiring the old OS to do an upgrade.  We'll here's a warning of another sort that just bit me almost three months after "upgrading" to Vista 64.  The quotes are not meant to say that Vista isn't an upgrade from XP, but rather that you cannot "upgrade" the 64 bit version of XP to the 64 bit version of Vista.  A clean install is required.

My problem is that at one point I used XP's Encrypted File System to encrypt a folder that held financial information.  Some that being old tax records.  All of which I forgot about.  Note that when you use EFS under XP, you are not prompted to create a recovery agent.  You are however prompted under Vista.

Since the upgrade advisor doesn't work on Vista 64, I have no idea if it would have caught that I had files using EFS.

I got my W2 and wanted to do taxes this week-end.  Sat down with TurboTax, went to import 2005 information, only to find out that I was basically out of luck getting my old tax records.  Even though it's a clean install, you cannot boot back into the old XP 64 instance to run the mmc for the certificate snapin to export you certificate that would allow you to decrypt the files.

Monday Jan 08, 2007

Vista on Sun Ultra 40

No drivers for the audio device and the Nvidia Nforce RC2 drivers don't quite work yet for nforce4 motherboards.  However you can just grab the latest Vista drivers from RealTek and everything is good to go.  Everything gets recognized.

Also, grab the just released (Jan 5th 2007) Nvidia graphics drivers.  Much better than the ones supplied by Microsoft.



My name is Craig Bender aka ThinGuy. I'm a Principal Software Developer for Oracle's Virtual Desktop Engineering group.

I architect and evangelize the use of Oracle's Desktop technology including Sun Ray, Secure Global Desktop, and Oracle VDI.


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