Friday, 14 December 2007


It's not often I get excited about firewalls or anti-virus software. But over the past couple of months, since the EVE & Ubuntu incident (more on that later.), I decided on picking up the usability reins of a bit of software I have only seen referred to twice in computer magazines and never in all the time I've been online. Sadly, as I don't subscribed to all of them, just don't have the time to stand in shop flicking through and getting all-over-wrought!

But, unlike the Government, I tend to run software in parallel - even though the general advise is not to. Conflicts? No, more than likely, you'll just find that one bit of software that's much better than the other. But if in doubt especially when installing AV's just unplug from the internet whilst initially testing and scanning.

But moving onto Avast, AVG, McAfee, Norton, Panda, Kaspersky. I have tried them all, and they have all failed in one miserable way or another. Out of these, it was my old stalwart (AVG) that I eulogised over, getting friends to install as been a far better option than the paid ones. That, when friends asked for help with a problem installation, I had my post-installation-cd complete with the latest edition along with Zone Alarm, a decent defragmenter and one or two other bits to help finish a new installation with ease.

Unlike Avast which seemed to hog so many system resources, it was like wadding through a vat of sand with both hands tied and a concreted block pulling you down. Trying to get anything done was ridiculously painful. Very secure, if only unusable in my particular set-up.

So with Comodo in the back of my mind I prowled the net in search of better security, I decide to go over to the site and download. Well, within hours of downloading Comodo Anti-Virus it found a virus that had been lurking on my PC whereas AVG (free version) missed it completely. So I quickly downloaded the firewall and malware products, again all free and updated frequently. If anything it's worth while giving this a go. Although with so many things available for free... where is the catch!

Friday, 9 November 2007

iPhoneness and the clicks of death.

Unlike the PS3 the iPhone hasn't really seen the same number of people clambering, fighting, kicking over the elderly and infirm outside of shops to get hold of one of these delicious 21st century icons.  But supply issues aren't the problem here - as all those who initially brought truckloads in the US found out - no, it's more the 18 month albatross of a contract which isn't to everyone's fancy, as well as the first version of anything (aka Vista) leaving your newly purchased goods in the lap of the gods of reliability. 
Watching umpteen videos of said shiny goods reminds me of my first Iomega Zip drive purchase experience, and suffering the dreaded clicks of death (it's even in that font of all knowledge, Wikipedia), tape backups - from Iomega tape drives - which backed up then refused to admit that any data was on them, nowadays I much prefer to wait for the third version of a particular bit of hardware but especially software, or at least when prices come down from their initial stratospheric levels.  

But, the look of the iPhone and its lovely GUI, means that at some stage I along with many others will be hooked into buying one.  Although hopefully by then, other manufacturers will have got their act together and the competition will truly be worthwhile.

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Ubuntu 7.10 & Eve-Online

Well after the diatribe of my earlier blog, I have had to eat humble pie as well as the cd case.  So it was that XP has been re-installed on my machine as the main OS, as the one and only game, that I play online - EVE-Online - refused to play under the Wine or Virtualbox emulation programs, but that was down to having a slow processor.

So I reinstalled XP, and within the first six hours it fell over nine times - whereas Ubuntu in its first three days of existance on my machine only fell over once, and log back into the game.  Only to discover that they are porting the game to Mac's and the Linux system, in two days time.  As I start jumping for joy, notice the the specifications and let out a howl of frustration...

Minimum System Requirements:
OS: Ubuntu 7+, Suse 10+, Linspire 6
CPU: CPU speed equal to or greater than 1.8 GHz Centrino
RAM: 1024 MB
HD space: 6 GB
Video: NVidia 6600, ATI is not supported

... of course I have an ATI graphics card.  Amazing how they can't produce a driver for one of the top two companies out there.  So untill that particular hornets nest's sorted out.  I'll do the least amount of installing onto XP, keep my data separate and backed up.  Then when they do ATI drivers, i'll be back to Ubuntu like a shot.