Category: Personal Computer


I’ve recently got a windows 7 64bit laptop and I decided to install in it my favorite game of all times: The Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion. After completing the installation and copying a bunch of mods from my older installation (in a Windows 7 32Bits laptop) I tried to start the game and every single time I tried to run it crashed to the desktop (CTD) with the message that the process oblivion.exe had stopped working. After a bunch of attempts to get the game running, including compatibility mode, updating the drivers of the graphic card and others, I found a solution that worked.

The only way to solve this was to delete everything inside the folder documents/my games/oblivion The only thing I didn’t deleted was the game saves. After that the game started working.

So here is my advice for those with a similar problem, just delete the files that are inside that folder and you’ll be fine.

After a few month of inactivity, I’m back with some comments on Portable stuff (in terms of technology, of course).

In the last few weeks portals like Android and Me and Engadget (If anyone knows others please share them with us) have been releasing a lot of news about tablets, android based for the most part. While I really think this is quite good, it’s also quite frustrating and limited.

For two years I’ve been a user of portable applications and games. Back in the beginning of 2008  I received my first U3 pen with 16 GB and another one, a DATAFERRY with 16GB. After a few months using, and loving, U3 I got tired off all the good applications where payed, and not that cheap most of them, so I changed to Portableapps.com, a free and opensource platform to take your applications with you. For instance, this post is being written on the portableapps version of Firefox.

Thanks to the possibility of taking all of my favorite applications with me, and having an Asus EEE 901 (20GB SDD) to tag along, I end up realizing that there’s a huge flaw in today’s software. Most software isn’t developed with Portable guys (like me) in mind. When you have a netbook with only 20GB available you start to rely on your pen drive for most stuff. And if you discover that you can carry applications in your pen drive instead of installing them on you pc, them you will understand my reasoning. Also, my EEE 901 has Ubuntu linux on it, being the core of the OS in the 4GB SDD and the HOME partition on the 14 GB SDD. If I went around and installed all the stuff I need I would run out of space in no time (and trust me, my installation of Ubuntu was 6 months ago and I only have 600MB out of 4GB free).

And if I’m going to a place where I know that I’ll have a pc available, I don’t want to carry my netbook with me (the screen is to small for a long term usage). So what’s my “solution”? Portable windows applications. If you go to any kind of torrent site you’ll loads of software, from the MS Office tools, to burning software, media players, games and other software. However, none (or very few) are legal copies of the software you want/need to use.

The way I see it, we are going to have a real battle between OS in the (very) near future. Mostly because they will all want to be the masters of Tablets, in the same way that Windows is the master of personal computers (I know there are a lot of Mac and Linux users around, but let’s face it, most of the computers have windows installed).

And if the event is inevitable, as I think it is, them, in my opinion, developers should start focusing on making their applications portable and able to run from a pen drive.

Just imagine the following situation:
We are a supervisor at a construction site, going around with your Windows tablet pc, taking notes and checking stuff, saving the documents and notes directly to your loyal high-capacity pen drive. You finish your walk-around and it’s time to show the results to your superior. Unless your superior has the programs you use to take the notes, you’ll have to show them on the tablet screen, that might not be the most comfortable screen to see it. But what if the programs you use are portable editions, that can easily run from a pen drive? You just un-plug the pen drive from your tablet, plug it on his computer and voila! You are now showing the result of your work on a comfortable 14″+ screen.

I hope I’ve made my point clear. In the near future we need legal and ready to use portable applications. As for me, I’ll continue to use the not so legal version (I actually own all the “portable” applications I use) but portable applications because I have to think about my health (specially my eyes).

Be well!

Francisco Ribeiro

About five days ago I started to have BSOD on my Asus Z53S Series boot. The laptop started, gets a BSOD, reboots and enters windows. It was getting a little (but just a little) annoying so I filmed the boot about 5 times until I got a perfect catch of the BSOD. I discovered it was from my graphic card – the culprit was acpi.sys. After several days of researching I found, on the NVidia site, the updated drivers for my graphic card and happily install it (103MB).

After that the pc stopped crashing on boot, to start crashing when I tried to check the proprieties of files or folders… this time the guilty was asdsm.sys – or Asus Data Security Manager. My first tough was, let me quick this ass out of my pc, run the uninstall sequence and puff… BSOD, reboot the laptop and tried again, just to be on the safe side, and BSOD again. Ok, I tough, if I can’t uninstall it them I’ll just update it to the latest version, and another epic travel trough the internet begun. I finally got a more recent version of the software and run the update and… BSOD!!! This time I boot the windows in safe mode, uninstalled the damn thing and hurrah!!! It did the uninstall correctly.

I happily restarted the computer and… windows didn’t started. Right before the welcome screen the computer just reboot, without error or anything, just reboots. I entered in safe mode and tried to install the latest version of the software, with success.

And so I tough my problems where over… that’s until I tried to shut-down my pc today and got a BSOD. This time the error was  PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA and the sys that was wxlslpzg.sys Already knowing that this was most likely to be a driver error I start browsing the internet for that specific file without any success, that’s right, for the first time on my life I got zero (0) results at a google search.

I was completely devastated. I didn’t want to reinstall windows. Than it it me, maybe there where other things that caused that type of crash (0x00000050) and so I searched for it and found this great topic at Bleeping Computer Forum. Thanks to a post there (kudos for usasma) I went to http://housecall.trendmicro.com run they’re free program and it finally found the damn wxlslpzg.sys , a trojan by the way, that removed from the computer. as I’m finishing this post the program is running for the second time. After it finishes I’ll shutdow my pc and see if the BSOD happens again or not.

Cheers

Dell Home & Home Office | Ubuntu | Dell.

I was surfing the Portuguese news when I saw a reference to this site. Being a Linux user (on my Asus EEE 901) I immediately did a google search for Dell’s site in order to confirm this.

After reading the site above I simply couldn’t believe what I was reading. So there’s a major producer of personal computers going full on linux… The looks like Paradise for open-source defenders.

And the best part is that one of the reasons they advance for the support is one of the most important for companies nowadays. Safety!  Every business, big or small, multinational or local, depends on this simply concept. the safer the system you’re on, more confident your customers will have on your services.

As for my part, the only reason why I don’t migrate to Linux fully is a very shameful one, I just love Computer Games, either World of Warcraft, The Elder Scrolls, Neverwinter Nights or others. And despite the fact of having wine, it’s not the same thing. For instances, I can run WoW on my Asus EEE 901 via wine at 4-9fps, which is very very low, however, in a short period I used windows xp on the same computer I could run WoW at 14-20fps, which is playable. Now I know the graphic card on netbooks are poor at best, but the same game, on the same system with a diferent Os, emulation vs. native made a huge difference.

I just hope other companies follow Dell’s example, and somewhere in the near future Linux is more supported by Games producers, Software producers and Hardware producers, allowing us to have true freedom of choice 🙂

Cheers Dell!

I’ve just started using Portable dropbox from http://greg.webhop.net/

After a long (and stupid fight) with the software I got it working and it’s simply great.

One of the greatest uses of dropbox is the possibility of having your files with you on the computers you use. The one disadvantages of the software is the usage of dropbox on computers that are not used just by you.

Now thanks to Greg and the guys at portableapps you can take, and use, dropbox on any computer that runs portableapps (have to try to run it on wine).

In order to use the great portable app you need to be a user of portableapps (of course) and download dropbox portable from Greg’s web site. Them  just install it as you would with any other portableapps application and just press next. After the application install start it from the portableapps menu, input your login information and press next (always next).

The syncs files will be on x:\portableapps\dropbox\my documents\my dropbox (or something like this) you cannot change the destination folder.

Wait for the files to sync and your good to go. Dropbox on any windows computer 🙂

Conclusion:

Pros:

  • It’s a portable dropbox… what else can I say?

Cons:

  • Can’t choose the destination folder

Classification: 9/10

Links

Greg’s Portable Dropbox

Portableapps

Technical sheet:

  • Review written on the web application via “Firefox” 3.6.3 for Windows Vista
  • Computer used: Asus Laptop (don’t recall model) running Windows Vista
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