Friday, September 28, 2007

Future peek...

Hey guys! congrats to all of you, INDIA finally won a Cricket World Event. It's a huge surprise for me as they did this without my hero Sachin. They defeated every team except New Zealand. I think in this FaSt-FoOd era , 20-20 matches are here to stay. MS Dhoni appeared to me as a strong captain but as you all know India is a country driven by emotions, one or two series losses can change all this hype that he is getting. At least they won, three cheers for our 20-20 team. Hip hip Hurray!!!!

Its been long time since I wrote something really useful for coding community. Although I haven't yet completed my Vista post and Secure string post, I want to share more of my experiences. I have done some exiting stuff related to VB.NET Macros and CSLA framework. Also, it's a long time since I have been using MS Office 2007. It's a gem of a software and Microsoft's OneNote tool is really amazing. Microsoft have completely revamped office application user interface. It's much more organized now. Other thing in which I am involved right now is configuring my company's Share point site and project web server. My future posts will be centred around CSLA framework and VB.NET macro that I wrote.

Just check this screen shot of MS Word 2007 upper menu bar. 100% WoW factor,

Let's hope I get some time to write my posts.

Have Fun!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Throne

Check this out..I found this funny wallpaper somewhere on web...

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Franky speaking, how many of us know that a concept of Fibers exists in Windows? I can't see any raised hands :)

Few days back I was checking some thread synchronization stuff on MSDN, that's when I found this strange thing (What Fiber???Which Fiber???Where Fiber???). Let me share my G.K regarding Fibers with you...

Fibers were added to Windows to make life easier for guys trying to port existing UNIX server applications to windows. Actually, UNIX server application works with a single thread but act as multi threaded apps. That is, UNIX server applications are single threaded but can serve multiple clients. Developers creating applications for UNIX have to create their own threading library in order to simulate pure threads. These developer created threading packages contains multiple stacks, persists data in CPU registers and switch among these stacks to give user an impression of multi threading.

Redesigning existing UNIX server applications for Windows can take months to complete. To help companies port their code correctly and quickly to Windows, MS added the concept of Fibers to windows.

Fibers always work in user mode and kernel knows nothing about them. They work according to algorithm that you define i.e. fiber scheduling algorithm is defined by you.

This is just a brief knowledge about Fibers. I don't want to dig deep into it as everything that comes after this is related to windows internals, like WIN32 API calls to convert existing threads to Fibers, allocating stack memory and playing with registers.

So now, if some one asks you a silly question you can ask him to define a Fiber. It will be fun. Anyways, right now I am having some fibre rich breakfast i.e. some honey almond museli with cold milk. Have to reach office within one hour. Hurry up!!

"I am the One" - [ Neo says so in Matrix ]

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Sachin and his LuCk

India lost yet again due to exemplary performance by all three sides, i.e. England, mighty India and Aleem Champions (captain Mr. Aleem Darr). Mr. Aleem Darr should have been declared man of the match for his amazing eyesight which can see some things that a normal human eye can not. Even complex machinery was not capable of identifying things that Mr. Aleem's eye noticed. I think these things happen, but it hurts when it happens to someone like Sachin. For me, cricket means Sachin and Sachin means cricket. I really wanted to jump to Lords and thrash Mr. Darr for his foolish looking decisions. I really don't know how to spell out his name but for making things more clear I can split his name wide open, A LAME DEAR.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Remember The Name-Fort Minor

Let me show you one of the most amazing music video that I've seen in recent times. Name of the song is Remember the name and it's performed by Fort Minor. Fort Minor is a group starring Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park fame. Mike says Fort Minor is his side project and if such songs are part of side projects then I can't imagine what goes into Mike's major projects. Really nice song and amazing video.

Friday, September 7, 2007

My Flickr Show

This is cool..

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Old days are back again !

You know what, I got my brand new graphics card ( GPU a.k.a. Graphic Processing Unit)

Bought it from US at 79$ i.e. around 3,500 Rs. In India, its about 13,000 Rs. Isn't it amazing??? Nice deal I must say. A friend of mine, Ravi, went to US on official trip. He's the one who bought this one for me. I was bit scary regarding its compatibility with Vista, but all worked fine.

Installation was pretty simple, open your CPU side cover, fix up card in PCI- E slot, blah blah blah, nothing complex in it.

I don't know why manufactures assume that the people buying their products are blessed with a good Internet connection. It's same with every company, be it my beloved Microsoft or XFX. Why can't they [XFX or NVIDIA] supply Vista compatible drivers with the driver CD that came with the package. I have to download that 10 Mb set up package for installing Nvidia GPU drivers on windows Vista. I just don't like this type of marketing. Manufacturers should do everything possible so that their product is completely packaged together. It's like going to a shop for buying pants. You buy a nice trousers, you reach home, you open the package, waiting to try out, but package content reveals that Zip was not available when this pant was manufactured, and you should go and get your zip from so and so location. If they print on their package that product is 100% vista compatible, they should also mention that you will need to download this set up from their support web site. Funny and painful.

Keeping aside all these woes, let me tell you some of the specs:

Stream Processors:16
Shader Clock:900 MHz
Chipset:GeForce™ 8500 GT
Memory Clock :667 MHz
Dual Link DVI - Supporting digital output up to 2560x1600
Memory:256 MB
Bus Type:PCI-E
Memory Type:DDR2
Othe Features
Vista Ready, DVI Out , HDCP Ready , SLI ready , RoHS , HDTV ready

I have installed Need For Speed-Carbon and Quake 4. Amazing graphics and details. I haven't seen anything like this on computer before.

Quake Sceenshots:

If it's in the game, then it's in the game [EA Sports tag line]

Sunday, September 2, 2007

My life with Vista

I have been using Windows new much hyped Operating System from over 6 months now. Most of the things are nice but there are few areas where it could have improved. I'll try to list them here. These are 100% according to my own experience and my machine configuration and may vary from system to system.

Check out my system information:

Let's start our Vista story,

  1. Driver Drivers Drivers
    This is the worst part of my Vista life. Somethings that worked fine on Xp, were not able to run on VISTA. There are no Vista compatible drivers available for them.

    First thing that I want to list here is my Creative 5.1 Live sound card. I bought this card and a set of Creative 5.1 speakers few months ago. They worked without any trouble on XP. Vista came and all things went off. There were no drivers available for the sound card. I searched a lot, but to my surprise, Creative have decided not to work on Vista drivers for this sound card. I don't know why they didn't want to work on this, but this is just not good. If they converted all their Xp drivers into Vista why leave this product. It's sad. I have tried all generic drivers available but none of them works. Problem is that although I am having 5.1 speakers capable of surround and DTS sound, I have to listen to stereo output. One of my rear speaker is not working. I have decided not to buy any product from creative in future.

    Next came my TV Tuner card. I bought Pinnacle's PCi TV tuner card which according to mighty Pinnacle is (was) 100% vista compatible. I don't know what they mean to say when they write -"this product is 100% vista compatible." Vista didn't even noticed their product. I searched a lot, both on open source websites and Pinnacle driver support, but nothing concrete. I downloaded about 100 mb of different driver packages from Pinnacle that promised to make my TV Tuner work on Vista, but nothing worked. At last, after 1 month of my purchase, some one from Pinnacle responded to my query that i had put on their support site. They provided me the link to appropriate driver. It worked. At least they were better than Creative guys.

    I bought new handset, Motorola E6 smart phone. It's so damn smart that Vista decided to totally ignore it. Motorola USB didn't worked, so no matter what I do, vista never recognises that something known as Motorola Smart phn is attached to my PC. As you all know by now, Motorola USB drivers are not compatible with Vista. I have tried different driver packages but nothing works. I am planning to sell of this phone and buy a Sony Erricson one soon. I heard they are out with their Vista drivers.

    One of my friend, Prashant, bought a new HP laptop with (LOL) Vista OS. He came to my house to get some music. I have a 40 GB USB Hard Drive and we planned to use that to transfer data. I attached that drive to my PC, copied the songs and then attached that drive with my friends laptop. You know what, his Vista didn't recognised my drive. I must say, Vista profiles drivers according to user. That's bad. When we both had Vista Ultimate, this should have never happened.
  2. MS own products are not Vista Compatible
    I count myself as .Net developer and for this I need to have some things that are usually not found on every other PC. These things are Visual Studio and SQL Server. Both these are products developed by Microsoft. I had Visual Studio 2003 and 2005 and both SQL 2000 and 2005 installed on my XP machine. There was a software, a small application, provided by Microsoft to check which of my applications will not run on Vista. To my delight, result showed, none of my application will fail and everything will work fine. I installed Vista, and guess what, both Vista and SQL didn't worked.
    I tried installing SQL 2005 and VS 2005 as it thought, they will work fine. But somewhere Bill Gates was smiling, thinking, Aha Gaurav got Vista and he thinks everything will work fine, how foolish someone can get :) . I ran VS 05 installer and a great looking message box popped up, Hey Gaurav!, I know u want to install VS 2005, I know u have broadband on your machine and I know u will do whatever it takes to keep your Vista, so please download and install this Visual Studio 2005 update from, it's just 80 mb in size. Good Luck! Then what, i downloaded that 80 mb, installed it and everything worked fine.
    Next came SQL 2005, and to my horror I needed one vista update and one SQl update to get this going. Download size approximately 300mb. This is not good, Microsoft should have used space left behind on VISTA Ultimate DVD to copy all these required updated for us. I am blessed with a good Internet connection, but not everyone is, so Microsoft and other companies should think about this. 300+80 mb means a lot here in India.

  3. Hardware companies playing the spoil sport
    It's again related to drivers. I don't know what these hardware companies were doing when MS was creating Vista. Were they asleep? I think they were sleeping. Sometimes they don't have drivers and sometimes they say they have them but links that they provide only helps you download some junk to your PC. USB drivers are missing, what's going on guys, wake up else you will be out of market soon. Motorola and Creative are leading contenders this so called ''soon to be out of market" race.
  4. Blue Screen
    I am facing this problem from first day of my Vista life. Boot process just kicks off and Blue screen shows up and it gets restarted again. After trying 2-3 times everything works fine as if this is the best computer with best OS. Earlier message with which that blue screen greeted me was, "Recent hardware change corrupted some thing...", then after few months it got changed to, "PFN_LIST_CORRUPT." Will someone tell me what I am supposed to do. I ran BIOS update for my mother board, but all in vain.
  5. Com Surrogate
    This is another one that I am having from day one. It stopped recently but I don't know how. May be some windows update solved that. It happened when ever I went near to any movie [.avi] files. Some blogs says un-install Nero, but I swear it didn't helped. I hope this is not coming back to me in future.
  6. Windows updates without any bug fix details
    Every week MS guys are ready to patch up Vista with new updates. There is no detail regarding what is being updated. Updates are categorized as Recommended, Security and optional. I hope! every one will agree with me that there should be some sort of release notes attached with these updates.
  7. Internet Explorer Crashes
    Aha! I found a bug in IE. If you try to run multiple You tube videos at the same time in one browser window in separate tabs, IE will crash. I need this fixed as soon as possible. I have started using Firefox for You Tube. Let's hope MS fixes this soon.
  8. Windows Explorer Crashes
    This was some bad software that i installed. It's fixed now.
  9. No Updates for Windows Defender
  10. Which Antivirus should I use?
  11. Folder views are same everywhere
  12. Pinnacle TV Tuner wakes up when Vista is sleeping

    I'll keep updating this list as soon as i found new things bugging me. Please! hope this list doesn't gets too long. I like Vitsa for its speed and Visuals and I don't want to see inkish XP again.
to be continued....