How to Display a Details Tab in Each Device Properties Dialog Box

Posted by Shashank Krishna Friday, February 29, 2008

Windows XP can display in each device properties dialog box a supplementary tab named 'details' that lists advanced information about the current device that is mainly dedicated to administrators or developpers. To permanently display the 'details' tab in each device properties dialog box of the device manager, use the following method:

1. Click Start/Control Panel,
2. Double click 'System',
3. Click the Advanced tab,
4. Click 'Environment Variables',
5. Locate the 'System variables' frame,
6. Click New,
7. In the Name label, type: "DEVMGR_SHOW_DETAILS"
8. In the Value label type 1 and then click OK, OK and OK,
9. Now in open the device manager, double click a device of your choice and look: you have a new details tab with tons of informations to dig in.

Boot Defragment

Posted by Shashank Krishna

A very important new feature in Microsoft Windows XP is the ability to do a boot defragment. This basically means that all boot files are placed next to each other on the disk drive to allow for faster booting.
By default this option is enabled but some upgrade users have reported that it isn't on their setup.

1. Start Regedit.
2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Dfrg\BootOptimizeFunction
3. Select Enable from the list on the right.
4. Right on it and select Modify.
5. Change the value to Y to enable and N to disable.
6. Reboot your computer.

Finding winipcfg for Windows XP

Posted by Shashank Krishna

Instead of using the command line to display /configure your ip with ipconfig, you can download wntipcfg directly from Microsoft which will give you the same GUI to display / configure your ip as winipcfg.


When you have downloaded it, install it (the default is c:\program files\resource kit\ ) copy wntipcfg.exe to c:\windows and rename it to winipcfg.exe Now you can just click on run, then type in "winipcfg"

Some of you dislike the fact Windows Messenger starts each time you start your computer. To prevent Windows Messenger 4.5 (or later) from running, use the following method:
1. Start Registry Editor (Regedit.exe).
2. Locate and click the following registry key:


3. On the Edit menu, point to New , click Key , and then type Messenger for the name of the new registry key.
4. Locate and click the following registry key:


5. On the On the Edit menu, point to New , click Key , and then type Client for the name of the new registry key.
6. Locate and click the following registry key:


7. On the Edit menu, point to New , click DWORD Value , and then type PreventRun for the name of the new DWORD value.
8. Right-click the PreventRun value that you created, click Modify , type 1 in the Value data box, and then click OK .
9. Quit Windows Messenger.

This tip is extracted from article Q302089 of the Microsoft Windows XP Knowledge Base.

Disabling The Windows XP Boot Logo

Posted by Shashank Krishna

ncase you didn't already know, It is possible to disable the Windows XP boot-up splash screen, although this only speeds up the boot process very slightly so there isn't a real need to use this tweak.

1. Edit boot.ini
2. Add " /noguiboot" right after "/fastdetect".

Once you reboot, the splash screen will be gone. It can be re-enabled by removing the new switch

Shutdown Windows XP Faster

Posted by Shashank Krishna

When you shut down Windows XP, the OS tries its best to make sure that all services (they help run things like graphics, printers etc) are shut down. But there are times when they don't close, thus Windows XP tries to give it the chance to shut down itself. This amount of time that windows waits for the service to close is stored in the system registry. If you modify this setting, then windows will shut down the service earlier. To modify the setting, follow the directions below:

* Start Regedit.
* Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Control.
* Click on the "Control" Folder.
* Select "WaitToKillServiceTimeout"
* Right click on it and select Modify.
* Set it to a value lower than 2000, say 1000 as a test.

Disable Error Reporting

Posted by Shashank Krishna

As many of you would have noticed - every time a Microsoft program crashes in Windows XP - and Error Report comes up allowing you to send some information on the crash to Microsoft. Well this can get quite annoying, so here is how you disable it.

1. Open Control Panel
2. Click on Preformance and Maintenance.
3. Click on System.
4. Then click on the Advanced tab
5. Click on the error reporting button on the bottom of the windows.
6. Select Disable error reporting.
7. Click OK
8. Click OK

Change Internet Explorer Browser Title Text

Posted by Shashank Krishna

1. Click Start > Run > Type gpedit.msc
2. Click User Configuration > Windows Setting > Internet Explorer Maintenance > Browser User Interface
3. Double click on Browser Title
4. Click on Customize Title Bars
5. Change the text to what whatever you want
6. Click on Ok

Now you changed the title of your browser and you sure see what you wrote when you
open a New Widow

Speed Up Browsing

Posted by Shashank Krishna

When you connect to a web site your computer sends information back and forth. Some of this information deals with resolving the site name to an IP address, the stuff that TCP/IP really deals with, not words. This is DNS information and is used so that you will not need to ask for the site location each and every time you visit the site. Although Windows XP and Windows XP have a pretty efficient DNS cache, you can increase its overall performance by increasing its size.

You can do this with the registry entries below:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


Make a new text file and rename it to dnscache.reg. Then copy and paste the above into it and save it. Merge it into the registry.

How To Enable Hibernation?

Posted by Shashank Krishna

Under Windows 98, Me, or 2000 there was an option in the shutdown dialog box to enter the computer into hibernation (where all the content of the RAM is copied to the hard disk). The shutdown dialog box of Windows XP doesn't offer any longer the hibernation button. Some users may get confused about how to enable the hibernation mode. If this mode is supported by your motherboard (ACPI) you have to do the following:

1. Click Start and Shut Down,
2. Point the standby button and maintain the shift key pushed,
3. A new hibernation button appears: click it while still holding the shift key: voila your PC will hibernate.

Blogging with Word 2007

Posted by Shashank Krishna

By now, you�ve probably heard the news that Office 2007 beta 2 is publicly available for download. (If you hadn�t heard the news, then you can download it from here). Unless you�d been living under a rock for the past year or so, you have also probably heard about all the new UI (User Interface) changes in Office 2007 and how it is supposed to make working with Office easier, faster and more intuitive. I�ve just downloaded and installed beta 2 and while I can�t yet comment on how good an experience the UI is, the build of Word that is included with Office 2007 has a not-so-much mentioned feature that I�m excited about :) So what�s this feature? The ability to blog directly from within Word!

I discovered the feature quite by accident since I don�t believe I saw any mention of this feature in any of the early beta review articles. But once I found it, I was surprised to discover that they had put a lot of thought into how things worked from within Word. So let me give you a little taste of what the blogging feature is all about and you can judge for yourself if this is something that you�d want to have/use.

First, a look at the main interface in Word 2007 and a quick list of new UI elements that I will refer to in the article:

Word 2007 main UI

Now, if you want to write a blog entry in Word 2007, you�ve got to go click on the MS Office Button � this is where the standard File menu items from previous versions of Word (and then some) went to :) Here�s a screenshot of what the new MS Office menu looks like when you navigate to the blog option:

Word 2007 blog publish menu

When you click on the Blog option, it will open up a new Word window. This window is different from normal word editing windows in that it has a separate location for the post title. Not only that, if you haven�t set up any blogging accounts till now, it will also prompt you to create a blogging account with an established blogging services like MSN Spaces, Blogger, SharePoint etc. or to provide the details for your own blogging server as long as it supports Atom or MetaWeblog APIs. The other difference in this new window is the ribbon bar � instead of the standard ribbon bar with nine tabs that you see in the first screenshot, you get a new blogging ribbon bar which has only three tabs:

Word 2007 blogging ribbon bar

And here�s how the document window itself looks:

Word 2007 blog entry screen

If you have multiple blogging accounts defined (you can use the Manage Accounts button on the ribbon bar to Add/Modify blogging accounts), then the Account selector appears just under the entry title. You can select any of your defined blogging accounts from there and make your entry. Making the entry itself is as easy as typing out a normal document using Word :) After you�re done typing, all you have to do is click Publish on the ribbon bar or click the little arrow next to Publish to get the option to also publish an entry as a Draft. That�s about it. Happy blogging

Troubleshooting a Device Conflict

Posted by Shashank Krishna

A device conflict occurs when two devices are trying to claim the same system resource for themselves. There are three basic types of resources that devices use. These include the following:

- Interrupt Requests (IRQs). These are access paths to the processor. Each device with an IRQ can interrupt the processor�s main operations to say, �Hey, I need something here!� IRQs are numbered 0 through 15. Generally speaking, each device should have its own IRQ.
- Input/Output Range. These are segments of the computer�s memory, and each device should have its own reserved area.
- DMA Channels. These are channels, similar to IRQs, that some devices use to communicate with the processor. Sound cards and floppy drives typically use DMA channels; most other devices do not. You will probably not have any DMA channel conflicts, because there are more than enough of them to go around among the devices that use them.

The preceding resources are usually assigned automatically in Windows by the Plug-and-Play feature. Allowing Windows to assign resources is a good idea, in most cases. But some devices can have quirks that require them to use certain addresses or IRQs; and when two devices want the same resource, a conflict occurs, causing one or both devices to malfunction (or fail to function at all).

Resolving a Device Conflict in Windows
The standard way of resolving device conflicts in Windows is to turn off the Plug-and-Play assignment for a device and specify an alternative set of resources it should use.

The following steps show how to resolve a device conflict. These steps are primarily for Windows XP.
1. Open Device Manager, and locate the device having the conflict. It will probably have a yellow circle and an exclamation point next to it.
2. Double-click on the device with the conflict. Its Properties dialog box appears.
3. Click on the Resources tab.
4. Check the Conflicting Device list. If a conflict is listed, note whether it is an Input/Output Range conflict or an IRQ conflict.
5. Deselect the Use Automatic Settings check box.
6. Open the Setting Based On drop-down list and choose a new configuration. Keep trying different configurations until you find
one that reports No Conflicts in the Conflicting Device list.
7. Click on OK to close the dialog box.
8. Click on Close to close the System Properties box.
9. Try using the device; it should work now.

In rare cases, all the configurations on the list (step 6) have a conflict. If you face this situation, you can try changing the Interrupt Request and the Input/Output Range separately. Keep choosing configurations from the Setting Based On list until you find a configuration with only one conflict. Make a note of what it is (Interrupt Request or Input/Output Range). Then click on the matching line in the Resource Settings list. Next, click on Change Setting. One of two things can happen: You might see a message that the setting cannot be modified, or you might see a box containing alternate settings. If you see the latter, try a different setting. Repeat this procedure until you find a setting that produces no conflicts.

If Windows tells you that the setting cannot be modified, you have one last remedy to try. In the Conflicting Device list, notice the device that is the other half of the conflict. Then try modifying the settings for that device so that it no longer conflicts with this one

Mapping Network Drives in Windows XP

Posted by Shashank Krishna

If you use Windows XP on a local area network (LAN), and you save and open files in shared folders as part of a workgroup on a server, you can create a virtual drive whose drive letter appears in the My Computer window along with those of your local drives � a process referred to as mapping a network drive. To map a network drive, follow these steps:

1. Click Tools–>Map Network Drive on the My Computer menu bar to open the Map Network Drive dialog box.

2. Click the Drive drop-down list button and select the drive letter you want to assign to the virtual drive containing this network folder (note that the list starts with Z: and works backwards to B:) from the pop-up menu.

3. Type the path to the folder on the network drive in the Folder text box or click the Browse button and select the folder directly from the outline of the network drives and folders shown in the Browse For Folder dialog box. Now click OK to close the Browse For Folder dialog box and return to the Map Network Drive dialog box (where the path to the selected folder now appears).

4. If you want Windows to recreate this virtual drive designation for the selected network folder each time that you start and log on to your computer, leave the check mark in the Reconnect at Logon check box.

If you only want to use this drive designation during the current work session, click the Reconnect at Logon check box to remove the check mark.

5. If you’re mapping the network drive for someone else who uses a logon different from your own, click the Different User Name hyperlink and enter the user name and password in the associated text boxes in the Connect As dialog box before you click OK.

6. Click the Finish button in the Map Network Drive dialog box to close it and return to the My Computer window.

The network folder that you mapped onto a virtual drive now appears at the bottom of the contents area under a new section called “Network Drives” and Windows automatically opens the folder in a separate window.

After mapping a network folder onto a virtual drive, you can redisplay the contents in the My Computer window by double-clicking that drive icon.

To remove a virtual drive that you’ve mapped onto My Computer, click Tools–>Disconnect Network Drive; next click the letter of the virtual drive in the Disconnect Network Drives dialog box and then click OK. Windows then displays an alert dialog box warning you that files and folders are currently open on the virtual drive and that you run the risk of losing data if files are open. If you’re sure that you have no files open on that drive, click the Yes button to break the connection and remove the virtual drive from the My Computer window.

If you use Windows XP on a local area network (LAN), and you save and open files in shared folders as part of a workgroup on a server, you can create a virtual drive whose drive letter appears in the My Computer window along with those of your local drives � a process referred to as mapping a network drive. To map a network drive, follow these steps:

1. Click Tools–>Map Network Drive on the My Computer menu bar to open the Map Network Drive dialog box.

2. Click the Drive drop-down list button and select the drive letter you want to assign to the virtual drive containing this network folder (note that the list starts with Z: and works backwards to B:) from the pop-up menu.

3. Type the path to the folder on the network drive in the Folder text box or click the Browse button and select the folder directly from the outline of the network drives and folders shown in the Browse For Folder dialog box. Now click OK to close the Browse For Folder dialog box and return to the Map Network Drive dialog box (where the path to the selected folder now appears).

4. If you want Windows to recreate this virtual drive designation for the selected network folder each time that you start and log on to your computer, leave the check mark in the Reconnect at Logon check box.

If you only want to use this drive designation during the current work session, click the Reconnect at Logon check box to remove the check mark.

5. If you’re mapping the network drive for someone else who uses a logon different from your own, click the Different User Name hyperlink and enter the user name and password in the associated text boxes in the Connect As dialog box before you click OK.

6. Click the Finish button in the Map Network Drive dialog box to close it and return to the My Computer window.

The network folder that you mapped onto a virtual drive now appears at the bottom of the contents area under a new section called “Network Drives” and Windows automatically opens the folder in a separate window.

After mapping a network folder onto a virtual drive, you can redisplay the contents in the My Computer window by double-clicking that drive icon.

To remove a virtual drive that you’ve mapped onto My Computer, click Tools–>Disconnect Network Drive; next click the letter of the virtual drive in the Disconnect Network Drives dialog box and then click OK. Windows then displays an alert dialog box warning you that files and folders are currently open on the virtual drive and that you run the risk of losing data if files are open. If you’re sure that you have no files open on that drive, click the Yes button to break the connection and remove the virtual drive from the My Computer window.


Posted by Shashank Krishna

To NTFS or not to NTFS�that is the question. But unlike the deeper questions of life, this one isn’t really all that hard to answer. For most users running Windows XP, NTFS is the obvious choice. It’s more powerful and offers security advantages not found in the other file systems. But let’s go over the differences among the files systems so we’re all clear about the choice. There are essentially three different file systems available in Windows XP: FAT16, short for File Allocation Table, FAT32, and NTFS, short for NT File System.

The FAT16 file system was introduced way back with MS�DOS in 1981, and it’s showing its age. It was designed originally to handle files on a floppy drive, and has had minor modifications over the years so it can handle hard disks, and even file names longer than the original limitation of 8.3 characters, but it’s still the lowest common denominator. The biggest advantage of FAT16 is that it is compatible across a wide variety of operating systems, including Windows 95/98/Me, OS/2, Linux, and some versions of UNIX. The biggest problem of FAT16 is that it has a fixed maximum number of clusters per partition, so as hard disks get bigger and bigger, the size of each cluster has to get larger. In a 2�GB partition, each cluster is 32 kilobytes, meaning that even the smallest file on the partition will take up 32 KB of space. FAT16 also doesn’t support compression, encryption, or advanced security using access control lists.

The FAT32 file system, originally introduced in Windows 95 Service Pack 2, is really just an extension of the original FAT16 file system that provides for a much larger number of clusters per partition. As such, it greatly improves the overall disk utilization when compared to a FAT16 file system. However, FAT32 shares all of the other limitations of FAT16, and adds an important additional limitation�many operating systems that can recognize FAT16 will not work with FAT32�most notably Windows NT, but also Linux and UNIX as well. Now this isn’t a problem if you’re running FAT32 on a Windows XP computer and sharing your drive out to other computers on your network�they don’t need to know (and generally don’t really care) what your underlying file system is.

The Advantages of NTFS
The NTFS file system, introduced with first version of Windows NT, is a completely different file system from FAT. It provides for greatly increased security, file�by�file compression, quotas, and even encryption. It is the default file system for new installations of Windows XP, and if you’re doing an upgrade from a previous version of Windows, you’ll be asked if you want to convert your existing file systems to NTFS. Don’t worry. If you’ve already upgraded to Windows XP and didn’t do the conversion then, it’s not a problem. You can convert FAT16 or FAT32 volumes to NTFS at any point. Just remember that you can’t easily go back to FAT or FAT32 (without reformatting the drive or partition), not that I think you’ll want to.

The NTFS file system is generally not compatible with other operating systems installed on the same computer, nor is it available when you’ve booted a computer from a floppy disk. For this reason, many system administrators, myself included, used to recommend that users format at least a small partition at the beginning of their main hard disk as FAT. This partition provided a place to store emergency recovery tools or special drivers needed for reinstallation, and was a mechanism for digging yourself out of the hole you’d just dug into. But with the enhanced recovery abilities built into Windows XP (more on that in a future column), I don’t think it’s necessary or desirable to create that initial FAT partition.

When to Use FAT or FAT32
If you’re running more than one operating system on a single computer, you will definitely need to format some of your volumes as FAT. Any programs or data that need to be accessed by more than one operating system on that computer should be stored on a FAT16 or possibly FAT32 volume. But keep in mind that you have no security for data on a FAT16 or FAT32 volume�any one with access to the computer can read, change, or even delete any file that is stored on a FAT16 or FAT32 partition. In many cases, this is even possible over a network. So do not store sensitive files on drives or partitions formatted with FAT file systems.

How to Write a Windows XP Driver

Posted by Shashank Krishna

Summary: This document describes the steps you should take to create a Microsoft� Windows� XP driver for your device. To create a Windows XP device driver:
# Install the current Windows DDK. Read the system requirements and installation instructions in the stand-alone Getting Started HTML file supplied with the DDK.
# Read Getting Started with Windows Drivers. This document guides you through the planning and decision-making process involved in making a Windows device driver from design through distribution. You should also look through the DDK documentation for device-type-specific information.

The DDK documentation set has the following device-type-specific nodes:
# Battery Devices
# Display and Print Devices
# IEEE 1284.4 Devices
# Interactive Input Devices
# Modem Devices
# Multifunction Devices
# Network Devices and Protocols
# Parallel Ports and Devices
# Serial Ports and Devices
# Smart Card Devices
# Still Image Devices
# Storage Devices
# Streaming Devices (Video and Audio)
# Devices Requiring VDDs

IDE bus are described in System Support for Buses. Driver development for most device types also requires a strong understanding of Windows operating system fundamentals, which are described in Kernel-Mode Driver Architecture.

Look through the driver source code provided with the DDK for a sample that represents your device type. Use the sample code where possible, modifying it for your device’s specifics.

The sample code can enhance your understanding of Windows XP driver implementation requirements and speed your development time.

Compile and build your driver. This should be done using the Build utility and not some other compiler, because the Build utility has certain features that are necessary for driver development.

Obtain a checked build of Windows XP, so that you can test and debug your driver using free and checked system builds.

The checked build of Windows XP provides extensive kernel-mode debugging capabilities not available in the free build.

Create an INF file so that you can install and test your driver.

Test and debug your driver. You should use Driver Verifier, a program that puts your driver through a variety of tests, stresses, and deliberate failures in order to test its response and reliability in many extreme situations. You should also use a debugger. Microsoft provides several powerful debuggers that can monitor and debug kernel-mode and user-mode drivers. Using Driver Verifier in conjunction with these debuggers, on both the checked and free versions of the operating system, can be a powerful way to test your driver.

Provide an installation package so that customers can install devices that use your driver.

Submit your driver and installation package to Microsoft so that it can be digitally signed.

There are many resources available to you while developing your driver. The following sites describe some of the support available to you:
# describes how to obtain the current DDK and provides other information, such as a driver development reading list.
# provides information, such as device-type-specific white papers and late-breaking news, and a list of resources available to driver developers.
# contains DDK product support information.

10 Interesting Facts About Windows

Posted by Shashank Krishna

These are some of the things that not many people would know about Windows. It is not a household knowledge. But, having knowledge of these would let you appreciate Windows in a whole new way. The development of Windows started a whole new era in the computing industry.

1. Windows was first called as interface manager when it was first strategized. It was based off of Apple’s Mac OS.
Windows has been around for 21 years now. Windows 1.0 hit the shelves in November of 1985. It is believed that Bill Gates got the idea of Windows OS from Steve Jobs.

2. The Windows operating system has 50 million lines of code (a line averages 60 characters) and grows 20% with every release. It’s put together by 7,200 people, comes in 34 languages and has to support 190,000 devices–different models of digital cameras, printers, handhelds and so on.”

3. There were 103 million worldwide in 2005, and the growth rate seems to be around 10 to 15 percent per year. Windows operating system claims to have a market share between 35% to 40%. Wow, there are 400 million Windows users.

4. There are 250,000 to 300,000 applications for Windows

5. Although apple claims 1 million conversions from Windows to Mac, 85% of the computers worldwide run on Windows.

6. If you look at the list of viruses that are around, you should be able to see that most of the viruses are targeting Windows or any other Microsoft application. Windows comes under a lot of attack by people who exploit the security flaws in Windows. Vista which is being launched early next year is expected to set a high bar in security.

7. These are the canceled versions of Windows:
# 1996 May 3 - Windows Nashville (windows 96)
# 1997-1998 - Cairo (a “true object-oriented OS”) planned after Windows NT; if released would be similar to DesktopX (but at a lower level)
# 1999 December - Windows Neptune (Windows neptune is a version of microsoft windows that was planned to be the home consumer edition of windows…) was sent out to betatesters but was never released, Exception Handler: No article summary found.Should have been successor to Windows 2000.

8. The Blue Screen of Death (sometimes called “bluescreen”, “stop error” or just “BSoD”) is a popular name for the screen displayed by Microsoft’s Windows operating system when it cannot or is in danger of being unable to recover from a system error. The term blue screen of death was coined by Erik Noyes while he worked for Charles Schwab and Co., Inc.’s technical support for the Electronic Service Delivery division in early 1991. Erik coined this phrase and shared it with customers and his co-workers. Soon, it became a standard phrase in Windows terminology.

9. Microsoft has a dubious record of having the most number of crashes. It is believed that there are around 25 million crashes everyday.

10. The next release of Windows is Vista which is due this year end or early next year. There are reports that 60% of the Vista code is being rewritten due to an internal error at Microsoft

If you are an IT guy who knows all about PCs, this article is not for you. This is for those people who find it hard to choose one computer over another while they are computer shopping. I will be focusing mainly on the configuration and I will keep the brands for a later article. Also, this is for PCs ONLY. I am not a Mac guy. Read my profile if you have any questions regarding my credentials.

This article will address both desktops and notebooks but the examples that are dealt in the article are mainly desktops. I am just going to scan the software surface and when I say software, I mean windows and not any other OS.

Whether you go to a store like best buy or an online store like Dell, you are bound to bump into something that looks like this :


Operating System: Microsoft� Windows� XP Media Center Edition 2005 (Update Rollup 2) w/ XP Media Center Backup
Application Software: Microsoft� Office Small Business Edition 2003 (Basic + PowerPoint & Publisher) w/ Microsoft� Home Collection
Processor: Intel� Pentium� Extreme Edition 955 with Hyperthreading Technology (3.46GHz, 1066MHz FSB 2×2M cache)
Chipset: Intel� 975X Chipset with DDR2 Support
Memory: 2048MB PC5300 Dual-Channel DDR2 667MHz SDRAM (2-1024MB modules)
Hard Drive: 500GB Serial ATA II/300 7200RPM w/Raid 0 (2-250GB Hard Drives - Striping)
Floppy Drive: 9-in-1 media card reader
Optical Drive: 16x Double-Layer Multi-Format DVD Writer (DVD�/R�RW/CD-R/RW) and 16x/48x DVD-ROM drive
Extended Service Plan Including Limited Warranty: Desktop Value Plus Service Plan — 3 year parts/labor/on-site/3 year toll technical support
Case: 7-Bay Tower Case
Controller: Integrated Serial ATA Controller
Expansion Slots: (2) PCI Expansion Slots (Filled), (1) PCI-E x1 Expansion Slot (available). (1) PCI-E x16 Expansion Slot (available)
External Ports: (6) USB 2.0 (2 in front and 4 in back), (3) IEEE 1394 Firewire (2 in front and 1 in back), (1) Serial, (2) PS/2, (1) RJ-45 Integrated LAN, (1) VGA, (1) Microphone, front audio ports
Certification: Energy Star Compliant
Monitors: FPD2185W 21″ Black Widescreen High-Definition LCD Analog/Digital Performance Flat Panel Display with 4 Powered USB Ports (Includes height-adjustable stand)
Video: NVIDIA� GeForce 6600 with 128MB, DVI, VGA & TV-Out
Keyboard and Mouse: Elite Multimedia Keyboard and Soft-touch USB Optical Wheel Mouse (no mouse pad included)
Speakers: 2-piece speaker solution
Internet Service Provider: Six months America Online� Internet access
Part Number: 1008697
Additional Software: Adobe� Acrobat Reader� 7.0 and Google Toolbar
Network: Integrated Intel� 10/100/1000 (Gigabit) Ethernet
Security Software: McAfee� Internet Security Suite with VirusScan, Personal Firewall Plus, SpamKiller & Privacy Service, 36-months
Desktop Technology: Intel� Viiv� Technology
PCI Multimedia Card 1: Sound Blaster Audigy 4 Sound Card
Standard Software: Napster Trial Subscription

Intel� Pentium� Extreme Edition 955 with Hyperthreading Technology (3.46GHz, 1066MHz FSB 2×2M cache)
Chipset :
Intel� 975X Chipset with DDR2 Support
ICH7DH w/ RAID 0,1,5 Support
XD (eXecute Disable) bit
EM64T (64-bit support) support
EIST (Intel� Speed Step) support
HT (HyperThreading) support
VT (Virtualization) support (Requires additional software support)
Dual Core support
400 watt, dual voltage power supply
16.5″(H) x 8.0″(W) x 17.5″(D)
38 lbs (without packaging) Varies with options
I/O Ports:
1 9-pin serial connector
1 15-hole VGA connector
1 RJ45 network connector
2 PS/2 (keyboard and mouse) 6-pin mini-DIN connectors
6 version 2.0 USB ports (4-front/2-rear)
3 6-pin IEEE 1394 ports (2 front/1 rear)
Audio-Five 1/8″ mini-jacks for 7.1 surround sound
- Front left/right (green)
- Rear left/right (black)
- Surround left/right (blue)
- Center/sub (orange)
- Microphone (red)
S/PDIF (Sony/Philips Digital Interface)
Two front-panel 1/8″ audio mini-jacks Audio
- Headphone (green)
- Microphone (red)

Thats a long confusing list which could drive most people insane. From that big list, 70% of the items are not extremely critical for computing needs. The items that matter the most are 1. processor 2. hard disk 3. RAM and 4. motherboard. Along with this there are many other smaller features that makes a perfect computer to possess. I will be briefly scanning them as well.

There are two major players in the market. Intel and AMD. Intel is widely known and highly popular while AMD’s base is growing constantly. I am not gonna delve into details of the processor technology, all I going to share is that Intel used the CISC technology and AMD used/uses RISC. But now, Intel is using RISC to do the CISC. So, in a way Intel has discarded their initial technology to follow the technology that AMD implemented. No more engineering stuff, sorry.

When you look for a processor, there are two major components that are crucial. The clock speed and the cache memory(L1 and L2). Try to choose a processor that has a higher clock speed. Higher the clock, faster the computer. Secondly the cache, its just like clock speed in speed and importance. Higher the cache, faster the computer. There is another feature that is becoming popular, the number of bits. A 64 bit computer can do the job faster than a 32 bit computer. A good analogy would be if you are building a house, 64 people would build it faster compared to 32 people. There is more data transfer between the computer and processor with a higher bit processor.

In the above example, - “Processor: Intel� Pentium� Extreme Edition 955 with Hyperthreading Technology (3.46GHz, 1066MHz FSB 2�2M cache)”. Its an intel processor, which is good. Hyper threading technology is a good one to have. 3.46GHz is fast, I will talk about the Frontside bus under the motherboard section. It has 2 caches that are 2MB each which is extremely fast. Just know that the caches will act as an intermediate memory. Let me give you another example. If you buy a computer with 6GHz and 1MB cache, it is the same as buying a 3GHz processor with 2MB cache. Intel Centrino has lower clock speed but a higher cache memory which makes up for the slower clock speed.

Comparing Intel and AMD, the performance is almost the same. For a regular consumer, it works the same way. But, AMD gets the bait as it is cheaper than Intel. How many intel ads have you seen in the past month? How many AMD ads? All the ad costs are piled upon their products and hence Intel is so much more expensive compared to AMD. There are reports that AMD is closing in on Intel.
Hard Disk

My first computer had 256MB hard disk and I was so excited when I got a 1.2GB hard disk. These days, we have broken all barriers and we are dealing with hundreds of GBs. It is a common knowledge that the higher the hard drive space, the better it is. I agree 100% on that. There is not much you could with the brand of the hard drive you could buy if you buying it in a store like best buy. But, if you happen to have a choice of choosing the hard disk, I would recommend Western Digital, Seagate and Maxtor. In my experience, I have found these three extremely trustworthy. It is important that we have a good hard drive as the data that we store is priceless. Hard disk is one thing that we shouldn’t compromise on if we had a choice. Even if a hard disk costs you $20 more, think all the data you would be storing in the future.

This is from my personal experience. Dell used other branded hard drives and we used to have so many cases of broken hard drives and people losing sleep over the lost data. Losing data is not a pretty picture. All these said, I am not saying that the hard drives that I recommended wouldn’t crash. The probability of these hard drives crashing is much smaller than the others.

I almost forgot to mention about the speed of the hard drive. It is good to have a faster hard drive. But, for daily operations, most of the process is stored in the RAM and processor cache; there is a bleak chance that you might be able to observe a slower hard drive with a faster one, unless you are a person who transfers a lot of data back and forth.

We have gone through many different kinds of RAMs in the past few years. If I go into the technologies, I could write another long article on it within no time. But I will just say that as in hard drive and processor, higher the RAM memory, faster the computer.

There are two variables in a RAM. The RAM size and the channel bandwidth. You would want to have both these on the higher end. Both are critical for the overall speed of your computer. The RAM size affects the amount of data that could be stored on a computer while the channel bandwidth is responsible for the rate of flow of data stored in the RAM and to the RAM.

There is not much to choose from in RAM brands. All the RAMs are equally good and bad. I wouldn’t press on a single brand for a RAM. I would just go for a cheaper one.

Apart from the processor, this is the most important part of a computer. This defines all the features that a computer might possess. There are awfully lot of things that a motherboard can integrate but I am going to scan the important ones.

First of all, a motherboard should have a higher FSB. It is the bandwidth with which the data can flow through. Higher the FSB, faster the computer.

A motherboard typically has USB ports, firewire, integrated video card, integrated sound card, integrated modem, and other different ports. It is good for a computer to have as many USB ports. Most accessories are USB driven. But this is not critical as you can always bank on purchasing a USB hub which could do the trick. A firewire port is not as widely used but its existance on your computer is important. A good video card enhances your windows GUI. Look for a video card that has a higher non shared memory. Usually, video cards that are integrated on the motherboard share the RAM memory. Also, make sure that your motherboard has an AGP slot which could give you the choice of adding your own video card instead of the one on the motherboard. A good soundcard would be a plus. I have no clue how many people still use a phone modem. I don’t. It isn’t something I would look for in a computer. But it doesn’t if there is one already sitting on my computer. PCI slots are important as well. Most motherboards have at least 3 PCI slots which should be good.

Windows is the most common OS you can get in a store. It comes in two different versions, home and professional. For any home user, home would be more than handy. Professional is for people who would like to use their computer for remote desktop and other networking features. If somebody tries to sell you a media center PC, say no. Not worth it. Many bugs. I am awaiting Vista which could change the things around in the computerdom.

I have tried to share some of the things that I felt are critical in choosing a computer. If you have any questions regarding choosing a computer, feel free to comment and I will get back to you…

What Makes a CD Bootable?

Posted by Shashank Krishna

In order for a CD to be bootable, it must contain two files: BOOTCAT. BIN and BOOTIMG.BIN. BOOTCAT.BIN is a catalog file, and BOOTIMG.BIN is an image file�an image of a bootable floppy disk. That�s why you need an existing bootable floppy in order to make a bootable CD.

When you browse the contents of a bootable CD in Windows or at a command prompt, you won�t see any of the files that you would find on a bootable floppy; that�s because they are all stored within BOOTIMG.BIN.

When you boot from the bootable CD, everything in BOOTIMG.BIN and BOOTCAT.BIN shows up as being on the A: drive, while everything else on the CD shows up on the regular CD drive letter. It tricks the PC into thinking that there is actually a floppy in the A: drive

XP Tricks that Would Rock Your World

Posted by Shashank Krishna

Here are some more XP tricks that you could use…

Lost Admin Password
It seems as though formatting is the only solution for fixing the lost password issue but thanks to this website, you can just download their boot disk and follow the instructions to reset your password.

The only downside is that someone who has access to a computer and who knows the username can get into a computer using this bootdisk.

Backup Registry
Next few tips will be altering registry and I will recommend backing up the registry. Hence this tip.

Click start -> run -> regedit -> OK

Click File -> Export

Provide a name and a destination. Hit OK.

This should back up your registry.

Disable Balloon Tips
Does anybody get annoyed by the balloon that pops up every now and then like an angel instructing me or giving me a friendly reminder about some of my programs or the updates. I find it very annoying and found a way to disable them.

I strongly suggest that you backup your registry before attempting this.

Click start -> run -> regedit -> OK

Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced\

Create a DWORD value of EnableBalloonTips

Let the DWORD value be 0

Thats it. This should do the trick. If anything goes bad, restore your backed up registry.

Get Rid of Unread Mails
On your logon screen, you may see how many unread mails you have and blah blah blah. You can actually get rid of this if you find it annoying. This could be achieved by fixing the registry. I once again strongly suggest that you back up your registry before attempting this hack.

Click start -> run -> regedit -> OK

For a particular user: Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\UnreadMail

For all users: Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\UnreadMail

Create a DWORD key called MessageExpiryDays

Give it a value of 0

Customize Folder Background
This isn’t really a native Windows XP Trick but this one uses an external file to do the trick. Ever wondered if you could change the background of your folder in your C drive. There is a solution for this. Download this file and place it in the same folder that you want to customize. Run this program and follow the instructions. This should do the trick.

Duplicate User Profile
There could be many reasons why you would want to duplicate a user profile. Here is an easy way of doing so.

Create new user account

Log onto the new user account

Log off the account

Log on as the main admin

Control Panel -> User Profiles -> Settings

Click on a profile and hit copy to and select the destination profile

System Statistics
Ever wondered if your computer had statistics just like a website. It does and it gives you accurate information. It provides you information like how long your computer has been running, when your OS was installed and other stuff… This is how you obtain the statistics :

Click Start -> Run -> cmd -> OK

type “systeminfo” and hit “Enter”

This should give you all the wonderful info…

Lock Desktop
Contrary to Windows 2000 or Windows server 2003, there isn’t an option on XP to lock the desktop. But, there is a keyboard shortcut that does the trick.

Winkey + L is all it takes…

Remove Windows Messenger
Wanna get rid of the annoying windows messenger in your taskbar? Just follow these instructions

Click Start -> Run and type “RunDll32 advpack.dll,LaunchINFSection %windir%\inf\msmsgs.inf,BLC.Remove” and hit OK

I had read this long time back on codemasters and it took me some time to find it again. This is from codemasters.

For any of you at work who want to play a practical joke on one of your colleagues I have the answer. When he/she is away from their desk hold down the alt key, then the ctrl key and press the down cursor key. The screen will temporarily switch off, when it comes back on the screen will be upside down!

I think this will only work on XP.

To get the screen back just repeat the process with the up cursor.

To make it even funnier tell the person in question that this is a keyboard fault, hold the relevant keys in to switch the screen back and bang the keyboard on the desk, the screen will switch back. When your work colleague moves from his/her desk again switch it back, sit back and p*ss yourself stupid as they bang the keyboard on the desk!!

Real Tech News has uncovered a secret that helps you keep your memory for your use and not for Microsoft’s. They claim that Microsoft reserves 20% of bandwidth on all systems for purposes like updates and interrogating your machine.

The way to reallocate your bandwidth settings can be found on their website but what they fail to recognize is that this feature is available only on Windows XP. Tech Target gives reasons on XP Home not carrying gpedit.msc.

A further detailed search revealed that XP Tune Up had this figured out a while back and they have a guide for altering it with pictures…

I followed the XP Tune Up’s guide and it does make your Windows XP Pro go faster. This is a good discovery and I wish Microsoft had openly documented tweaks such as this. I am sure there are plenty of tweaks that would help XP to go faster

Learn Unix in 10 minutes

Posted by Shashank Krishna

This is something that I had given out to students (CAD user training) in years past. The purpose was to have on one page the basics commands for getting started using the UNIX shell (so that they didn’t call me asking what to do the first time someone gave them a tape).
This document is copyrighted but freely redistributable under the terms of the GFDL . Send me comments, corrections, and extra stuff that you think should absolutely must be included. I’ll gladly listen.



Moving around the file system:

Listing directory contents:

Changing file permissions and attributes

Moving, renaming, and copying files:

Viewing and editing files:


Environment variables

Interactive History

Filename Completion

Bash is the way cool shell.



Command Substitution

Searching for strings in files: The grep command

Searching for files : The find command

Reading and writing tapes, backups, and archives: The tar command

File compression: compress, gzip, and bzip2

Looking for help: The man command

Basics of the vi editor



File and directory paths in UNIX use the forward slash “/” to separate directory names in a path.


/ “root” directory

/usr directory usr (sub-directory of / “root” directory)

/usr/STRIM100 STRIM100 is a subdirectory of /usr

Moving around the file system:

pwd Show the “present working directory”, or current directory.

cd Change current directory to your HOME directory.

cd /usr/STRIM100 Change current directory to /usr/STRIM100.

cd INIT Change current directory to INIT which is a sub-directory of the current directory.

cd .. Change current directory to the parent directory of the current directory.

cd $STRMWORK Change current directory to the directory defined by the environment

variable ‘STRMWORK’.

Listing directory contents:

ls list a directory

ls -l list a directory in long ( detailed ) format

for example:

$ ls -l

drwxr-xr-x 4 cliff user 1024 Jun 18 09:40 WAITRON_EARNINGS

-rw-r–r– 1 cliff user 767392 Jun 6 14:28 scanlib.tar.gz

^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^

| | | | | | | | | | |

| | | | | owner group size date time name

| | | | number of links to file or directory contents

| | | permissions for world

| | permissions for members of group

| permissions for owner of file: r = read, w = write, x = execute -=no permission

type of file: - = normal file, d=directory, l = symbolic link, and others…

ls -a List the current directory including hidden files. Hidden files start with “.”

ls -ld * List all the file and directory names in the current directory. Without the “d” option, ls would list the contents of any sub-directory of the current. With the “d” option, ls just lists them like regular files.

Changing file permissions and attributes

chmod 755 file Changes the permissions of file to be rwx for the owner, and rx for the group and the world. (7 = rwx = 111 binary. 5 = r-x = 101 binary)

chgrp user file Makes file belong to the group user.

chown cliff file Makes cliff the owner of file.

chown -R cliff dir Makes cliff the owner of dir and everything in its directory tree.

You must be the owner of the file/directory or be root before you can do any of these things.

Moving, renaming, and copying files:

cp file1 file2 copy a file

mv file1 renamed file1 move or rename a file

rm file1 [file2 …] remove or delete a file

rm -r dir1 [dir2…] recursivly remove a directory and its contents BE CAREFUL!

mkdir dir1 [dir2…] make a directory

rmdir dir1 [dir2…] remove an empty directory

Viewing and editing files:

cat filename Dump a file to the screen in ascii.

more filename Progressively dump a file to the screen: ENTER = one line down SPACEBAR = page down q=quit

less filename Like more, but you can use Page-Up too. Not on all systems.

vi filename Edit a file using the vi editor. All UNIX systems will have vi in some form.

emacs filename Edit a file using the emacs editor. Not all systems will have emacs.

head filename Show the first few lines of a file.

head -n filename Show the first n lines of a file.

tail filename Show the last few lines of a file.

tail -n filename Show the last n lines of a file.


The behavior of the command line interface will differ slightly depending on the shell program that is being used.

Depending on the shell used, some extra behaviors can be quite nifty.

You can find out what shell you are using by the command:

printenv SHELL

Of course you can create a file with a list of shell commands and execute it like a program to perform a task. This is called a shell script. This is in fact the primary purpose of most shells, not the interactive command line behavior.

Environment variables

You can teach your shell to remember things for later using environment variables.

For example under bash:

export CASROOT=/usr/local/CAS3.0 Defines the variable CASROOT with the value /usr/local/CAS3.0.

cd $CASROOT Changes your present working directory to the value of CASROOT

export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=$CASROOT/Linux/lib Defines the variable LD_LIBRARY_PATH with the value of CASROOT with /Linux/lib appended, or /usr/local/CAS3.0/Linux/lib

printenv CASROOT Will print out the value of CASROOT, or /usr/local/CAS3.0

echo $CASROOT Does exactly the same thing

env | grep CASROOT A roundabout way to get the same information.

Interactive History

A feature of bash and tcsh (and sometimes others) you can use the up-arrow keys to access your previous commands, edit them, and re-execute them.

Filename Completion

A feature of bash and tcsh (and possibly others) you can use the TAB key to complete a partially typed filename. For example if you have a file called constantine-monks-and-willy-wonka.txt in your directory and want to edit it you can type ‘vi const’, hit the TAB key, and the shell will fill in the rest of the name for you (provided the completion is unique).

Bash is the way cool shell.

Bash will even complete the name of commands and environment variables. And if there are multiple completions, if you hit TAB twice bash will show you all the completions. Bash is the default user shell for most Linux systems.


grep string filename > newfile Redirects the output of the above grep command to a file ‘newfile’.

grep string filename >> existfile Appends the output of the grep command to the end of ‘existfile’.

The redirection directives, > and >> can be used on the output of most commands to direct their output to a file.


The pipe symbol “|” is used to direct the output of one command to the input of another.

For example:

ls -l | more This commands takes the output of the long format directory list command “ls -l” and pipes it through the more command (also known as a filter). In this case a very long list of files can be viewed a page at a time.

Command Substitution

You can use the output of one command as an input to another command in another way called command substitution. Command substitution is invoked when by enclosing the substituted command in backwards single quotes. For example: cat `find . -name aaa.txt` which will cat ( dump to the screen ) all the files named aaa.txt that exist in the current directory or in any subdirectory tree.

Searching for strings in files: The grep command

grep string filename prints all the lines in a file that contain the string

Searching for files : The find command

find search_path -name filename

find . -name aaa.txt Finds all the files named aaa.txt in the current directory or any subdirectory tree.

find / -name vimrc Find all the files named ‘vimrc’ anywhere on the system.

find /usr/local/games -name “*xpilot*” Find all files whose names contain the string ‘xpilot’ which exist within the ‘/usr/local/games’ directory tree.

Reading and writing tapes, backups, and archives: The tar command

The tar command stands for “tape archive”. It is the “standard” way to read and write archives (collections of files and whole directory trees).

Often you will find archives of stuff with names like stuff.tar, or stuff.tar.gz. This is stuff in a tar archive, and stuff in a tar archive which has been compressed using the gzip compression program respectivly.

Chances are that if someone gives you a tape written on a UNIX system, it will be in tar format, and you will use tar (and your tape drive) to read it.

Likewise, if you want to write a tape to give to someone else, you should probably use tar as well.

Tar examples:

tar xv Extracts (x) files from the default tape drive while listing (v = verbose) the file names to the screen.

tar tv Lists the files from the default tape device without extracting them.

tar cv file1 file2 Write files ‘file1′ and ‘file2′ to the default tape device.

tar cvf archive.tar file1 [file2…] Create a tar archive as a file “archive.tar” containing file1, file2…etc.

tar xvf archive.tar extract from the archive file

tar cvfz archive.tar.gz dname Create a gzip compressed tar archive containing everything in the directory

‘dname’. This does not work with all versions of tar.

tar xvfz archive.tar.gz Extract a gzip compressed tar archive. Does not work with all versions of tar.

tar cvfI archive.tar.bz2 dname Create a bz2 compressed tar archive. Does not work with all versions of tar

File compression: compress, gzip, and bzip2

The standard UNIX compression commands are compress and uncompress. Compressed files have a suffix .Z added to their name. For example:

compress part.igs Creates a compressed file part.igs.Z

uncompress part.igs Uncompresseis part.igs from the compressed file part.igs.Z.

Note the .Z is not required.

Another common compression utility is gzip (and gunzip). These are the GNU compress and uncompress utilities. gzip usually gives better compression than standard compress, but may not be installed on all systems. The suffix for gzipped files is .gz

gzip part.igs Creates a compressed file part.igs.gz

gunzip part.igs Extracts the original file from part.igs.gz

The bzip2 utility has (in general) even better compression than gzip, but at the cost of longer times to compress and uncompress the files. It is not as common a utility as gzip, but is becoming more generally available.

bzip2 part.igs Create a compressed Iges file part.igs.bz2

bunzip2 part.igs.bz2 Uncompress the compressed iges file.

Looking for help: The man command

Most of the commands have a manual page which give sometimes useful, often more or less detailed, sometimes cryptic and unfathomable discriptions of their usage. Some say they are called man pages because they are only for real men.


man ls Shows the manual page for the ls command

Basics of the vi editor

Opening a file

vi filename Creating text

i Insert before current cursor position

I Insert at beginning of current line

a Insert (append) after current cursor position

A Append to end of line

r Replace 1 character

R Replace mode

Terminate insertion or overwrite mode

x Delete single character

dd Delete current line and put in buffer

ndd Delete n lines (n is a number) and put them in buffer

J Attaches the next line to the end of the current line (deletes carriage return).

u Undo last command

yy Yank current line into buffer

nyy Yank n lines into buffer

p Put the contents of the buffer after the current line

P Put the contents of the buffer before the current line

^d Page down

^u Page up

:n Position cursor at line n

:$ Position cursor at end of file

^g Display current line number

h,j,k,l Left,Down,Up, and Right respectivly. Your arrow keys should also work if your keyboard mappings are anywhere near sane.

:n1,n2:s/string1/string2/[g] Substitute string2 for string1 on lines n1 to n2. If g is included (global), all instances of string1 on each line are substituted. If g is not included, only the first instance per line is substituted.

^ matches start of line

. matches any single character

$ matches end of line

These and other “special characters” (like the forward slash) can be “escaped” with \

i.e to match the string “/usr/STRIM100/SOFT” say “\/usr\/STRIM100\/SOFT”


:1,$:s/dog/cat/g Substitute ‘cat’ for ‘dog’, every instance for the entire file - lines 1 to $ (end of file)

:23,25:/frog/bird/ Substitute ‘bird’ for ‘frog’ on lines 23 through 25. Only the first instance on each line is substituted.

Saving and quitting and other ex commands

These commands are all prefixed by pressing colon (:) and then entered in the lower left corner of the window. You cannot enter a ex command when you are in an edit mode.

Press to exit from an editing mode.

:w Write the current file.

:w new.file Write the file to the name ‘new.file’.

:w! existing.file Overwrite an existing file with the file currently being edited.

:wq Write the file and quit.

:q Quit.

:q! Quit with no changes.

:e filename Open the file ‘filename’ for editing.

:set number Turns on line numbering

:set nonumber Turns off line numbering

Linux & Unix Tricks

Posted by Shashank Krishna

A few linux tips and tricks for newbies. I have made this page as a reminder of tricks I used in Linux or unix along the way.

To expand a .tgz of tar.gz file in one line :

gunzip < file.tar.gz | tar xvf -
gunzip < file.tgz | tar xvf -

To change both group and ownership recursively :

chown -R someowner.somegroup file

To search the entire hardrive for a file in Linux :

find / -name somefilename

To search on Linux within each file for some phrase on the entire harddrive and display the file and line numbers :

find / -exec grep -n “phrase” ‘{}’ \; -print

Xargs can be used to create a list of input file to one of your perl scripts e.g.

ls *.txt | xargs ./your_perl_script

Wc can be used to print the total bytes, words and lines in a file, combined with cat you can print a total number of lines or byte, e.g. say you want the total number of lines in all files in the current directory ending in .txt.

cat *.txt | wc -l

Display a range of lines withing a file where the starting line number is x and the ending line number is y :

sed -n ‘x,yp’ filename

Vim uses A4 paper size by default to change this, use the following setting for letter size :

:set printoptions=paper:letter

7 Reasons not to Use IE

Posted by Shashank Krishna

I am a big fan of Windows. I almost like all the microsoft products. Except one, the browser, the browser that is a common name in most households . Its the one that most geeks hate, hate with all their coding power, Internet Explorer. There are tons of websites that have the hate IE campaign and have Bill Gates morphed with horns that make him look like a demon.

I want to give atleast 7 basic reasons to convince people why they would need to move away from IE.

1. Security
We have tons of viruses on the internet waiting to take over your computer and millions of malwares that want to suck information from your computer. We make sure that we have the latest and best anti-virus which could protect our computer from any virus and this anti-virus usually comes with a built in firewall which is like the Great Wall of China, nothing can come through it. But we have internet explorer which acts like a gateway to all the spywares and malwares and hence nullifying the reasoning behind having the best anti-virus.

The other browsers in the market don’t allow spywares to install through them easily without knowing it. IE makes it relatively trivial through two features called ActiveX and Active Scripting. These technologies were designed specifically for the purpose of giving websites more control over a user�s computer. Unfortunately, as we have seen with exploit after exploit - that�s not always a good thing.

As some of the Microsoft knowledge base articles suggest, there are so many new ways to take control of one’s computer through internet explorer. This is a serious security threat.

2. Standards
All the web designers have to maintain a standard in order that their web pages/applications to be useful on all platforms and on all browsers. Infact, the browser concept came from having a standard that would not require a specific platform or an application. There is a set agreed upon standards which everyone around the world follow to make internet more user friendly and efficient. But internet explorer is set to change the world for the bad. Microsoft, for some odd reason, seems bent on breaking stride with these agreed-upon standards.

I am a web designer and I know that in CSS, there are so many features that would not work on IE but works on all other browsers. This restricts me from being creative and efficient. Many times, I am forced to change my design to suit IE and I sure am cursing IE all the way.

Microsoft wants to propose their own standards which is suitable for them, because they can. Its a multi-billion dollar company which has its effect on most computers throughout the world and they know that they can call the shots and they are being adamant by not going with the wave.

3. Does not work on all Platforms
Internet Explorer is so Microsoft dependent that it is made only for Windows and it hasn’t been coded for Linux. This is a big disadvantage especially if you are somebody who works on different platforms. We all get used to one application and the specific way we like to tweak it, but IE wouldn’t let you do it if you work on different platforms.

4. Not Extendible
What you get with Windows is what you get. No more additions nor subractions. You cannot add any more features like other browsers. If I take any other browser, there are tons of extensions which would make my life so much better than IE which is as rigid as Bill Gates’ smile.

We have a cell phone that works as a camera, video recording, palm pilot and the list goes on. We want to use one application for all(most) the needs. But, with IE, strictly browsing and gateway to viruses.

5. Reject Anarchy
How long can we allow one company to make the rules and rule the world? We need to bring an end to the Microsoft’s rule and it can very well start with rejecting IE.

I was so excited when I heard that Google was buying Opera because Google has the potential to trounce players like Microsoft and they can bring out quality products.

6. Better Options
Mozilla has the best product right now in the market. Its free. Its a household name for geeks, Firefox. Firefox is the best alternative that I have found so far which is very secure, the web designers love this browser as it follows all the standards all the way. It has tons of extensions which would turn your browser into all-in-one application and makes browsing so much better.

If you haven’t switched over yet from Internet Explorer, I would urge you to make the move now. Better late than never. You need to do it before you get taken over by viruses and hackers.

There are other players in the browsers field like Netscape, Opera, Flock and others. What makes Firefox better than the others is that Firefox has a huge community working behind it. Opera and Flock are in the Firefox mould but Netscape is obsolete with no improvements.

7. You are Smart
God made us human beings to be smart and rule over everything. This means, rule over things that are not genuine. We all know that Internet Explorer is not the best out there (infact one of the worst) and we have better options. Why not make a move towards something that is really good? Let me know me if you made the switch or not.

Free JavaScript Codes

Posted by Shashank Krishna Sunday, February 24, 2008


Posted by Shashank Krishna

CLICK THIS C++ Faqs: Frequently Asked Questions

sites for great wallpapers

Posted by Shashank Krishna Friday, February 22, 2008

discover how things function!!!!!

Posted by Shashank Krishna Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Login with multiple ids at the same time in Yahoo! Messenger

Posted by Shashank Krishna Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Multiple Login in Yahoo! by regedit

Follow these steps : ->

* Go to Start ==> Run ==>> Type regedit, hit enter

* Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER -> Software -> Yahoo -> pager -> Test

* On the right pane ==>> right-click and choose new Dword value .

* Rename it as Plural.

* Double click and assign a decimal value of 1.

* Now close registry and restart yahoo messenger.

* For signing in with new id open another messenger .

☺ ☺ Enjoy ☺ ☺

Teach yourself interactive tutorials

Posted by Shashank Krishna


Posted by Shashank Krishna Sunday, February 17, 2008


Posted by Shashank Krishna Saturday, February 16, 2008

here are some sites which will do the job

1. doesn’t have a lot of options, but it’s simple, and it works. It also enables you to share the YouTube video with your friends via e-mail. Unfortunately, all the files are called get_video, and you have to add the .flv extension manually.

2. KeepVid is another simple site. No hassle, works not only for YouTube movies but for a number of other sites, including Google Video, MySpace Video, DailyMotion and others. Again, you have to add the .flv extension by hand.

3. VideoDownloader is very similar to KeepVid, but supports even more video sharing sites, and it’s also available as a Firefox extension. Just like with KeepVid, all downloads are in .flv format. We recommend MediaCoder for free conversion.

4. YouTube Downloads takes the cake in the longest domain name contest. It also separates itself by using a proxy for downloading videos, which means that you might be able to get videos even if YouTube access is blocked at your workplace or in the country you live. Just search Google for YouTube videos, and copy/paste the URL into YouTube Downloads.

5. Zamzar is an online file format conversion site which can do a lot more than just converting YouTube videos to another format and downloading them to your hard drive, but it’s doing a great job so we had to include it here. Thoroughly tested by us and highly recommended. See the video of it in action here.

Ripzor | Rip Streaming Videos

Ripzor offers a unique service that provides users with the ability to rip and download videos from popular video sharing websites, such as YouTube and Google Video with the click of a mouse.

All you have to do is copy the URL of the video, enter it in one of our easy-to-use ripping tools to the right of the screen, and bam you have it!
url is


Posted by Shashank Krishna Thursday, February 14, 2008

Download Accelerator Plus (DAP) leverages patented technology, easy management of downloads and rich features and includes an enhanced Search Tab, improved download mechanism for faster downloads, ZoneAlarm Download Security; Alert Messages and Private Download for Premium users. Available in 10 languages.



Posted by Shashank Krishna

Speed up your firefox browser and load pages 2-3 times faster than previous, its tested

1. Type "about:config" into the address bar and hit return. Scroll down and look for the following entries:


Normally the browser will make one request to a web page at a time. When you enable pipelining it will make several at once, which really speeds up page loading.

2. Alter the entries as follows:

Set "network.http.pipelining" to "true"

Set "network.http.proxy.pipelining" to "true"

Set "network.http.pipelining.maxrequests" to some number like 30. This means it will make 30 requests at once.

3. Lastly right-click anywhere and select New-> Integer. Name it "nglayout.initialpaint.delay" and set its value to "0". This value is the amount of time the browser waits before it acts on information it recieves.

If you're using a broadband connection you'll load pages 2-3 times faster now.

mozilla net speed increases.... cheers

great orkut scraps & animations

Posted by Shashank Krishna

check out these sites for great orkut scraps & animations
for stuff Free Orkut Graphics Images, Stylish Text, Words, Flash Toys, Glitter Graphics and Much more, available only at

free mp3 songs downloads

Posted by Shashank Krishna Wednesday, February 13, 2008

here r some sites which u can trust..........
english Music is your source for legal and free MP3 downloads

sites known for best file sharing..

Posted by Shashank Krishna

e-books,music & many more.....
check out these sites

use google as proxy for surfing orkut

Posted by Shashank Krishna

use google as proxy for surfing orkut

link is

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Shashank Krishna
Bangalore, up, India
nothin much to say.........doin in IIIT allahabad loves bloggingn hacking.... :) and loooves blogging
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