Microsoft Windows Developer preview initial impressions

Every time Microsoft releases a new version of Windows, they promise a “reimaging” of it. Well, we got that from XP to Vista and a slight change from Vista to 7. Not to mention Windows 3 to NT and 1 to 2, 2 to 3, of course. Once again, Microsoft was able to keep they’re promise… Sorta. They released Windows 8: Developer preview this September and we were unable to install it until last night. (touchy OS…) Once I was done installing it which took two and a half hours (and a reinstall due to a first-boot error… .~.), I was taken to the new Metro UI start menu. It was nice. I liked how they managed to let not only touch-screen users in on the fun, too. Windows 8’s Metro UI was a bit different and I kept hitting the start menu on the desktop, forgetting what it did. I was unable to actually start any Metro apps with my mouse for some reason and needed to use the touch-pad on my laptop to access any Metro apps. I will need to re-enable the start menu we have in Windows 7, because there is no way to get to paint to make my “tile”. The lock screen was great. Again, both touch-screen and non-touch-screen users could use it. What I found one of the best things about the new Windows was that they re-did the ribbon on the top of windows by changing the Close, Maximize and Minimize button graphics and they moved the title to the center of the ribbon, as well as making it slightly larger. One of the things I disliked most was that in order to “customize” the PC, you had to activate Windows, which required Internet, of course, and we don’t have Internet where we live. You get a 30 day trial, but the activation is free and automatic! If you don’t have Internet on your desktop PC, do NOT install Windows just yet. They give you an option to “Activate via phone”, but that requires a certain file which was missing… I installed it in a virtual machine and plan on installing it on my old laptop as an upgrade from Vista tonight. Using it in a virtual machine was strange. I gave it half my RAM of the host system and some extra acceleration, but it still froze up. It also will fail to reboot, so make sure you use VirtualBox’s “Snapshots”. They are life savers. Put one after installing, after first boot and after everything is ready to go if you use it in a virtual machine. I suspect the issues I get in a VM will disappear when I upgrade my Vista tonight. The installer includes a “Repair” dialog, which is actually Windows 8 style. I hope they can manage to make the whole installation like that repair dialog in the final version. You can download Windows in three versions; 32-bit, 64-bit and 64-bit with extras from http://www.buildwindows.com/. Thanks for reading this really long and rather obnoxious blog post. Winking smile See ya!

-Ben

Miranda IM review

Ever wanted to have one place for all of your IM accounts and IRC? Now you can with Miranda IM! I downloaded it from it’s website, miranda-im.org and I love it! It is currently in beta, but it is still great for IM! It supports Yahoo!, IRC, AIM, GG, IRQ, JABBER and MSN, and still has a way to go. The icons can be imported, too! Just a tip; don’t use the expansion pack! My initial impressions were more on the good side than bad. we’ll see how it works later on down the line. When using an Aero style Windows, Miranda blends to the top bar, which adds some “Oooooo…” to the program’s design. I’ve yet to see this program in full action, (Come on… somebody go online!!) but from the chat windows I have seen, it is a very neat program! I hope you guys check it out some time! Smile Thanks!

Python coding tutorials coming soon!

Hey readers! I am going to be hosting a Python coding tutorial series on Geeks soon! I will take you from making a small, command-line application to making a big networking program with a GUI and everything! It is going to be great, so don’t miss it! I expect to start it very soon, probably this Saturday (11-26-11)! Ok, probably not this Saturday… Thanksgiving party! By the way, happy late Thanksgiving to all my readers on Geeks and geeksblog7.wordpress.com! Hope you enjoyed your turkey, or if your doing what I am and having it on Saturday, enjoy it then! Smile Anyway, back to the tutorials! I will be working on them with Windows using Python 2.7 and I’ll have a link for where to get Python, the programs we’ll be making and some fonts you will need for the GUI codes, so don’t worry about having to go searching for them on your own! I’ll see you then! Oh, and just to let you know; if I start this Saturday, I will have them up on Monday. Thanks for reading!

-Ben (Sharpclaw)

Slax review

Originally posted to geeks.pirillo.com. Direct link –> Click here!

Slax is a small Linux operating system that you can download for about 200 MB fromhttp://www.slax.org/. It runs off a LiveCD, but has no way of installing. It runs off of the KDE Desktop and is a lot like Windows. It takes some time to start up, but it’s nice once it’s ready. It does not have a bunch of screen size configurations on VirtualBox, but it has a whole heck of a lot in VMWare Player. One of my favorite thing about Slax is the sound scheme. The start-up sound is long enough for me to enjoy it, but not so long that it annoys the heck out of me. All-in-all, Slax is a nice operating system for 200 MB! You can get it by clicking this link! –> Get Slax

Thanks for reading!

SUSE (KDE): Initial impressions

Originally posted to geeks.pirillo.com. Direct link –> Click here!

For all of you who know what SUSE Linux is, this is for you. For the others, look it up before reading this. In short, it’s another Linux that you can download with either KDE or GNOME. I will be talking about the KDE version. I put the LiveCD in and installed it before trying. It took a really long time to install in VirtualBox. About an hour, though I wasn’t timing it. Even though it took forever to install and not a pleasant time to download, it was worth it! The desktop is one of the best KDE desktops I’ve ever seen! It’s glossy looks are nice, but the desktop is only a quarter of the screen, which is different, but not good for someone like me. You could have a different opinion. The “Start” menu was nice and clean, with different sections for applications and system tools. The applications that came with it are nice and simple and GIMP has a SUSE skin to it, which is a bit odd to me. Starting up after it was installed was amazing for me! I loved it for some reason. It showed a small hard drive icon in a gloss-box, I guess that was the boot loader. The virtual machine must have restarted without me knowing… Either way, it was nice. All-in-all, SUSE Linux running on KDE is a great operating system and I highly recommend it! 🙂

You can get it from here: http://www.opensuse.org/

-Ben

Brand new blog

Ok, guys! I know that I am switching blogs almost every week, but I think this is the one. I’m using WordPress now, because my computer has Windows Live Writer, so it will be a whole lot easier. Smile Enjoy!

(That’s not optional. I am making you enjoy. Just kidding.)