ShiretokoPv3 up for test (Firefox 3.5 bugfix update)

The generic globe logo used when Firefox is co...
Image via Wikipedia

The bug fixin’ job for Firefox 3.5 is getting hotter and hotter. People are getting busier at bugzilla. Another build has been spun, dubbed as ShiretokoPv3, presumed to include yet another patch. I am getting more of the impression that this is not really just a simple bug. The problem seems to be dead serious. Anyhow, you may check the updates on the issue here. I added a link to ShiretokoPv3 at the downloads page, if you want to participate in the test. You can also give your feedback to the bugzilla team.

For everybody’s info, the logo at the right side is the so called “generic globe logo” which is used when Firefox is compiled without the official branding. That is also the logo or icon that you will get if you use the Shiretoko version. Heads-up!

(wink).

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Mdigger Reader

Really, REALLY BIG RSS feed button

If you are hooked to online content such as rss feeds, texts, images and podcasts then Mdigger is for you. This free service that lets you download and feast your eyes on reading the latest content of your choice. I personally use this app on my Facebook account (thru their facebook app), on my PC and on my phone. Instead of visiting my favorite sites one after another what I do is check if they have RSS options and add it to my collection at Mdigger’s website. All the information I need from sites like Lifehacker.com, Webupon.com, Gizmodo.com and Makeuseof.com can all be found on one single RSS reader wherever I am, in and out of office both on phone and my notebook. Mdigger has a huge catalog of mclips (selection of information and online content) to choose from. If there is a site that’s not on their list just log on to your Mdigger account and simply add it to your own set of RSS feeds and Mdigger will take care of the rest, just make sure that the site you want to add supports RSS.

To avail the free service, registration at Mdigger is required (no strings attached). What you get is an account, allowed to add up to 30 RSS Feeds (can be increased though, by requesting for more). Fair enough, I think. At the moment their client app supports Windows (Vista/Xp) and Mac. On mobiles, iPhones are supported natively requiring only your browser while with Windows Mobile, you can get the client also from their downloads page. Alternatively, its also available at the download links page on this blog.

Test drive the app on your PC or Mobile. It’s one little software that I really find indispensable. For more info on RSS, here is my gift – RSS on Wikipedia.

Thanks.

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Microsoft VP fires back at Google on Chrome OS

Image representing Google as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

While scavenging for some fresh information at Gizmodo.com (gadget blog), I found one very interesting post. It’s about Microsoft’s VP throwing out a statement over Google‘s recent announcement on Google Chrome OS Project.

Image representing Microsoft as depicted in Cr...
Image via CrunchBase

Information coming from Gizmodo says:

Microsoft‘s Vice President of Developer and Platform Evangelism, Walid Abu-Hadba, explained in an interview what he thinks Google’s real motivation for creating the Chrome OS might be, and according to him, it’s not out of love for the consumer.Abu-Hadba’s statement that “Most of what Google does is defensive” isn’t actually the tech world’s most hypocritical statement (when was the last time Microsoft created something that wasn’t a version of an already-successful product?). He means that everything Google does is designed to keep their core business, search and advertising, growing and dominant. The impetus behind Chrome OS, according to him, isn’t to encourage simpler and easier computing, but weirdly enough, to distract other companies from attacking its own cash cow.

This is an interesting conversation because Microsoft has been doing just that, attacking Google’s core, with Bing—yet Abu-Habda doesn’t see Bing as a similar distraction to stop others from attacking Microsoft’s core business, Windows. So why is Microsoft allowed to venture into new-for-them waters with projects like Xbox, Zune, Silverlight, Bing and more, while Google is an inherently defensive company for announcing a ballsy new project of their own?

Microsoft might just be a bit nervous about Chrome OS, which we don’t think is really warranted at this point. Microsoft’s got an outrageously dominant OS marketshare, and seeing as how we know just about nothing about Chrome OS, it’s quite a bit soon to be launching attacks at a product that may well not be a competitor at all.

— material by Dan Nozowitz

Image representing Gizmodo as depicted in Crun...
Image via CrunchBase

The battle is becoming more and more interesting. I am getting excited on what the future will bring. Keep posted.

– for this post, I would like to invoke the “Creative Commons License“. Direct link to the article is here.

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Boot loaders and EasyBCD v1.7.2

Tweaking boot loaders on our PCs is a real rare venture, really. Tinkering your boot loader is not a good idea, unless, however required you don’t have to do it. What I am after here is merely informational and to flash before you some ideas that we can use when confronted with unexpected events such as managing boot loaders. As always, I recommend twiddling PCs be done by those who know what they are doing (experts in computers, of course, not Love Gurus) and if you are planning to do the twiddling, then this would mean that you should start learning and become an expert yourself — with the twiddling or fiddling thing. As a descendant of the old-fashioned IT guys that came from Cybertron, I am a firm believer of “If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it” idea. Just a little caveat there.

Touching the boot loader is not like installing Winrar or Winzip. The boot  loader is in charge of loading your operating system and at that it is very much critical to the operation of your PC. Before our favorite OSs can be loaded, it is the bootloader that does its job first so the OS can step in. Boot loaders are sometimes referred to as boot strap loader or bootstrap. This small program is most of the time unheard, meek and silent despite its huge importance. There are a lot of boot loaders that are on our PCs today.  There is GNU GRUB (i.e. Ubuntu), BOOTMGR, LILO and NTLDR (i.e. Windows Xp/Server 2003). If you have a dual-boot system (like Ubuntu and Windows Vista together) you will see the boot loader in action when you start-up your computer. Usually, when you arrive at the screen where options on what OS to load, Ubuntu or Vista  for example, are posted. You can expect boot loader tweaking if you are dual-booting, making some OS tests or debugging your OS kernel.

So why we need EasyBCD and what is it for? Allow me to show you why and for what.

Reason 1:  Just the simple task of displaying the content of your boot loader.

Reason 2: If you want to change your boot settings.

Reason 3: Add/Remove entries from your existing boot loader.

Reason 4:  Manage your boot loader with user selectable options.

Reason 5: In-buit boot loader diagnostics and boot loader recovery.

Reason 6: GUI-drivenboot loader management (Microsoft only provides the command-line bcdedit.exe tool only for bootloader management)

I have used EasyBCD on rare occasions, usually when I turn a little crazy and mess much around on my dual-boot PC configuration. Honestly, I was contented with what the software have allowed me see and do. I use a dual-boot WindowsVista Business and Ubuntu Jaunty on my Intel Centrino Vpro notebook. They seem to go together well. I am just starting to use Linux, a friend of mine tossed the idea to me. When I miss my next, next, finish life in Windows, I just switch right back. That is the beauty of dual-booting, like having two wives, one being virus-free but harder to handle, while other one beautiful and nice but faints in blue most of the time, bug-ridden and loves viruses more than me.

Try to read more on boot loaders, Wikipedia is one hot resource, actually you can go directly here.

EasyBCD comes from NeoSmart Technologies, they have been quite around for sometime and has been offering the software for free. I have added a download link of EasyBCD at the download page, if you want to try it, but please, be extra careful.

Thanks for reading. Your comments are most welcome.

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Firefox v3.5.1Pre – startup bug update

Image representing Mozilla as depicted in Crun...
Image via CrunchBase

First, I would like it to be noted that this bug does not exist in Linux, particularly on Ubuntu 9.04-Jaunty Jackalope (as discussed with AY -see comments at sidebar). This bug appear to affect Windows Operating Systems only (Vista and XP, don’t know if the older Windows OSs also have this issue).  The tests I have made on my Ubuntu proves that its not affected with this bug. Start-up speed was fast, amazingly faster than on my Vista box.

Workarounds, temporary fixes are currently circulated online (here, here and here), just to ease this problem a bit.

The bug has already been reported and tracked at bugzilla.mozilla.com with Bug 501605 as code (see here). Patch is already underway posted on the same bug report (see comment 131 at bugzilla), where there is also a try-out version of the software containing the patch — this patch is deemed to produce Firefox 3.5.1. If you are bold and daring enough, you may download the Firefox v3.5.1Pre from the download links page of this blog. Be sure to back up your profile, just to make sure everything is safe.

My experience with Firefox 3.5.1Pre? After downloading the zip file and extracting, I removed my Firefox v3.0.11 on my Vista. The download seems to be a portable version, you just extract and click firefox.exe and you’re up and running. My early observation is — it’s fast. The lag seems to have been fixed. I also have noticed that this try-out version is codenamed: Shiretoko. Sounds good for a patched try-out version that also works good. As I have said, if you are brave enough, try it out and see the difference. I think you’ll like it.

Additionally, let me post a quote from blurnot.blogspot.com saying,

A quick google will reveal you are not alone, Mozilla has acknowledged the flaw and hoping that their developer will be able to fix it. Ambiguity is not something that the end-users are looking forward to hearing. With the launch of Internet Explorer 8 and newer versions of the Chrome, Mozilla has got to fix its slow startup speed in Firefox 3.5 lest they lose their lead in the browser war.

I really hope that people won’t ditch Firefox 3.5 only for this problem. If this problem is wrecking your nerves, reverting back to Firefox 3.0.11 would be a welcome, short-term, bail-out solution (link added at download links page).

Stay tuned for more updates.

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Google’s gonna make their own OS – Google Chrome OS

So today, we’re announcing a new project that’s a natural extension of Google Chrome — the Google Chrome Operating System. It’s our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be.

Announcement released last July 7, 2009 by the Official Google Blog Team

Yipee, we are about to see one of big Google’s project again, the Google Chrome OS. As mentioned by the team it’ll be an open-sauce, lightweight and targeted at netbooks. Well, my notebook can transform into a netbook anytime.

Google Chrome
Image via Wikipedia

My humble opinion really is, I am more into admiring Google on their adventures not because the company can be a daredevil at times but its relentless pursuit of squezzing out good products for free. Hell, that is very enticing for a poor IT guy like me. I will make a tail on this project. Slated for release on the second half of 2010, a lot of folks including me are eager to see what this project will produce. Keep it up Google.

Check the official announcement here.

—- info from The Official Google Blog

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Flock v2.5 – Web browser with a twist.

Flock
Image via Wikipedia

Hooked on social networking? Test drive Flock 2.5 web browser. This goody has been developed with the sole intention of compounding all your social networking activities all into one single browser. Dubbed as “The Social Web Browser”, it really is a web browser on steroids centering on you social networking stuff.  Post installation, the software can be a bit overwhelming, don’t just take my word on that, try Facebook on Flock with the side bar enabled and you will see right away everything will laid before your eyes. The twist lies upon its ability to anticipate your social networking needs, from media, messages, video, rss feeds and almost everything are served like pancake and hot choco including the food server.

Feature-wise, Flock has a lot. The full feature list is here. If I may, I only would like to point out only the notable ones.

1. Activate social networking accounts and services using Flock Side Bar.

Having tried Flock, I find this feature cool. I can see my friends, their updates, media and all from the side bar. Facebook chat is already readily available from the side bar.

2. Media Bar

Clicking the media bar will give you a strip or panel that will show media content or streams. You can view, share, post, email, drag and drop, back flip, do you kung fu and all else. Truly, Flock is an information  galore.

3. Work with  multiple webmail accounts

Image representing Gmail as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

Yes and I like this feature. Having a lot of webmails can be too tedious but Flock instantly can become your personal assistant. With Flock you gain a small envelope icon just below the url bar and you’ll see your email accounts from there. My Gmail account gave me small headers of my emails. Good, succinctlydelicious.

4. Blog support

Image representing WordPress as depicted in Cr...
Image via CrunchBase

Our friendly browser supports blogging too. You can set-up blog service and do a self-hosted blog on Flock.

5. Uber-costumization

As always, the fun doubles when you can customize and personalize. Make Flock dress your own outfit, from toolbars, tabs and windows, favorite sites and media, just like adding a red ribbon on your hair. This browser really is one hell of a stunt.

6. Privacy and Security

On top of the fun, you will see privacy and security features that you will see from other solid browsers such as Firefox. Flock owes it technology to Mozilla, the developer of Firefox. You can change your cookie settings, manage your passwords, instant Web ID and anti-malware alerts.

7. Add-ons

Like big brother Firefox, Flock has it too, albeit, not as many as what Firefox already have. The developer also encourages the creation of extensions. Currently, they only support extensions and themes specific for Flock.

Image representing Flock as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

And that’s it. That is how Flock tries to redefine and make web browser granular, specific to what the end-user needs. Let us see how this project fare overtime. You may get your copy of the software here, don’t you worry, as usual, its free. If you want it in your language, check here.

Don’t forget to tell how you find the app.

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