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  • David Wayne Johnson 4:47 am on September 18, 2011 Permalink |
    Tags: Product Key, Windows 8   

    Windows 8 Product Key, When Resetting, Reinstalling 


     

    The installation of the Windows 8 operating system should not pose problems to the majority of users. Installation is pretty straightforward and users do not need to enter a product key during installation. It may however come as a shock to some users that they have to enter the Windows 8 product key when they try to reinstall or reset the operating system.

    We have already talked about resetting the operating system. This basically resets the operating system to the state right after installation. All personal files and applications are removed from the computer, and settings are returned to their defaults. The option to reset the PC is available in the Control Panel of the operating system.

    Reinstallation on the other hand simply refers to installing the operating system a second time on a computer.

    You might be asked to enter the Windows product key in both situations. On a side note: I reinstalled Windows 8 and was not asked to enter a product key.

    The problem here is that Microsoft is not supplying the product key with the operating system. You won’t find it in a text document that is part of the installation files nor on the official website.

    You find the answer in a forum thread (!) over at the Microsoft Developer Network forum. A user asked the following question on the forum:

    I’m reinstalling Windows Developer Preview and need to enter a product key. What key do I use?

    A Microsoft employee replied with this answer:

    If you need to reinstall Windows Developer Preview or use the Reset functionality, you might be asked to enter this product key:

    6RH4V-HNTWC-JQKG8-RFR3R-36498

    If you’re running a server version of Windows Developer Preview, you can use this product key:

    4Y8N3-H7MMW-C76VJ-YD3XV-MBDKV

    Note: These product keys are only for use with the Windows Developer Preview version of Windows 8.

    There you have it. If you need to reinstall Windows 8, you need to use the product key 6RH4V-HNTWC-JQKG8-RFR3R-36498.

    If you need to reinstall the server version of Windows 8, you use the product key 4Y8N3-H7MMW-C76VJ-YD3XV-MBDKV instead.

    The keys are only compatible with the developer preview of Windows 8. It is likely that they wont work in the beta or release candidate, and 100% certain that they won’t work in a final version of the operating system.

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  • David Wayne Johnson 10:26 am on September 15, 2011 Permalink |  

    Windows 8: My First Impressions 


     

    The download took a while due to the high demand when I started the download but it was steady at a reasonable speed. Microsoft used Akami as their CDN, I wonder why not Azure? But then again, Akami is a proven product and Azure is still in its infancy.

     

    Rather than go out and buy Double Sided DVD’s I used the older Microsoft USB tool to copy the files onto a flash drive, while this was running I freed up some space on my boot drive and created a partition ready for Windows 8.. It installed in about 15 minutes after several reboots.  Microsoft still believes that everyone is in the Pacific Time Zone and doesn’t ask you about your time zone on the install.  It should come right after you select your language, IMHO.  So after you get the chance to logon you can change your time zone and then change the clock to show the correct time.  I was glad I didn’t have to change the date back.. be wary if you install any Microsoft O/S after 9PM local if you are in the Eastern Time Zone.. If you are in another time zone adjust as necessary.

     

    I had to switch the display as I have 2 displays (25” primary HD) and a 23” secondary switched them around and enabled the 2nd display then I was in business.  A few drivers were not found so I just used the drives from my windows 7 windows\system32\driverstore and it was back up and running with all devices enabled.  Glad to see that my USB 3.0 ports worked out of the box.. was a shock on my first install of this motherboard that my keyboard and mouse were in the USB 3.0 ports and non functional in Windows 7 without the proper drivers installed (which was a puzzler as I have no USB 3.0 devices so didn’t care where I had plugged in the devices.. But that is another story.

     

    First off you have a Metro style boot screen with your operating system selections which was a surprise (to say the least). It boots relatively fast I’ll have to try it with a full install with all my apps running (going to try an upgrade install later on today) so I can compare the 2 operating systems and get a true impression of the “faster boot times” that are advertised and seen on the BUILD videos (which were impressive).

     

    You now can have a task bar on each monitor you have and they are individually configurable and you can move the start button to whichever screen you want with a click on the start button holder.  The desktop now being your start menu takes a lot to get used to. This being a developer preview I am guessing they want the dev’s to make use of the new things and create Metro Style Apps. There is NO way out of the box to get the standard (older start menu) out of the box, will be testing an add-on later on to get this back..

    I also found out there are 2 Internet explorers (a metro one) and Internet Explorer 10.. The Metro one is non tabbed (one display window only and takes a few clicks to switch windows).. I  had started the Windows 8 Server downloads in this window and found out to my chagrin that there is NO progress indicator I had to go into task manager and watch my download speeds to try and guess when the download was done.. No Ctrl-J to bring up the downloads screen.. This Metro IE does not support add-ons or plugins either.. The standard IE 10 does support plugins and add-ons and I tried to look in the downloads but they run in separate instances so I had no idea how long these downloads were going to take and the file transfer manager that I had paused previously and was going to restart later on didn’t work.. I was terrified to shut this system down for a reboot as required by Windows Update (Yes there are updates already) so told it to wait 4 hours, then another 4 hours. The downloads took about 5 hours (Windows Server 8 Developer Preview) and all I could do was wait.

     

    I didn’t try all of the preinstalled apps but those I tried were OK, better with a touch screen but this is a desktop PC, mouse and keyboard only..

    More to continue…

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 4:00 am on August 30, 2011 Permalink |  

    Microsoft details native VHD and ISO mounting support for Windows 8 


    Microsoft revealed on Monday that it is planning to natively support the mounting of both VHD and ISO files within Windows 8.

    ISO’s are typically used by software vendors to distribute their products but have also been used by pirates to distribute films and cracked software over the year. Windows 8 now supports the native ability to simply mount an ISO as if it was a CDROM. “You can simply access the contents of the ISO file without needing either needing to burn a new disc or needing to find/download/install additional software just to logically access the ISO,” explained Rajeev Nagar, Windows 8 group program manager on the Storage & File Systems team in a blog post on Monday.

    The process of mounting an ISO is simple in Windows 8. Microsoft surfaces an additional ribbon tab in the Windows 8 Explorer UI which allows users to mount of burn a selected ISO file. Once the file is mounted, Windows 8 creates a virtual CDROM/DVD drive that provides access to the contents of the ISO. Once users are finished accessing the ISO it can simply be ejected in the same way as a a real CD or DVD would.

    ISO mounting in Windows 8

    Microsoft will also natively support VHD files in Windows 8. VHDs will appear as a virtual HDD. Windows 8 will provide a drive letter to a selected VHD. “You can then work with the virtual hard disk just like any other file storage in your system, whether you are modifying, adding or removing files,” explains Nagar.

    VHD support in Windows 8

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 5:30 pm on August 12, 2011 Permalink |  

    Windows live messenger Would Not Logon 


    To fix it I had to

    Go to Start, click on Computer
          b. Browse to the location: 
    C:\Users\<Windows logon name>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Live\Contacts
          c. Look for the folder which has your email address For example: test@hotmail.com and delete it
    Warning! Only delete the folder which has your email address. If you delete other items in the Contacts folder they cannot be recovered

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 2:14 am on July 15, 2011 Permalink |  

    Hotmail introduces “My friend’s been hacked” security feature 


    Have you encountered a situation where you suddenly started receiving spam from your friend? Email accounts with weak passwords are susceptible to account hijacking, a situation where one’s mail account can get compromised.

    In most cases it is usually the friends who find this out first, because they are the one’s who start getting spam and junk mail from their friend’s account.

    What one normally does is that you reply back asking what this mail is all about or telling him on this ID and/or an alternate email ID, that his/her account may have been hacked. Or you would call or SMS your friend that their email account could have been compromised.

    Well, now you can do more!

    hotmail report hacked Hotmail introduces My friends been hacked security feature

    If you look at the drop-down menu for Mark as, you will now see a new option: My friend’s been hacked. When you click this option, Hotmail is intimated of this.

    Alternatively, when you move any mail from you contacts or friends to the Junk folder, you will get and option to check a box: I think this person was hacked!

    hotmail junk 400x163 Hotmail introduces My friends been hacked security feature

    Hotmail’s Compromise Detection System along with these new signals will then try to confirm if the account has indeed been hacked.

    Once the account has been marked as compromised, two things happen:

    Hotmail will now also prevent users from using one of several common passwords like 123456, password, etc. It is in any case, always a good idea to use a strong password.

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 7:36 pm on July 9, 2011 Permalink |  

    How to Sell 1 Million Records and Owe the Label a Half Million! 


    It is amazing but true.  Many recording artists sell thousands of albums and have yet to receive a penny in royalties from the recording industry.  It’s all in the contract that one signs with the recording company.

     

    Lets say you sell 1 Million Albums at a retail of $20 each at retail is your royalty 10% of the retail price (not a chance) you will get the figures from the wholesale price about half $10.. You’d think you’d get 1 Million, but you forgot the other clauses in the contract.  The signing fee that you get up front .. say $300,000 (that is to be deducted from future royalties) it is just a loan, not a bonus.

     

    Then there is the old breakage clause (this is from when records were on vinyl and cellulose and not ‘online  digital sales’ or current CD’s which are a lot less prone to breakage but the same percentage rules apply.The labels still try to get a super high breakage rate that they get to deduct. For them, it’s pure profit. Then there are "uncollected account" withholdings, on the basis that some retailers go bankrupt and don’t pay for the stock they had. The way it’s described here, that’s often just a set number, rather than based on any actual, documented cases of uncollected fees. Next up? "Free goods." Now, we talk about the importance of free goods all the time. But here it’s used in a different manner. Basically the labels deduct the "cost" of providing reviewers/radio stations/etc. with "free" copies of your album. That money comes straight out of the gross that the royalty is calculated on. The fact that you could just email the mp3 to those folks yourself? Well, pay no attention to that newfangled technology.  Also don’t forget you don’t own your own music, the Record Company owns it..

    Then we come to container charges.. how they can place a price on a container of digital media I have no idea. It is still a percentage of the album cost roughly 30% of revenue.

    They also have another charge called ‘reserves’.  Which is simply a way to hold money back.. the longer money sits in my pocket the more I can make with it rather than give it to you..

    This wonderful 10% of wholesale price seems wonderful, but don’t forget any money spent making the record also comes out of your pocket (royalties) as well.. When you dig in to things like this, you can understand how artists like Lyle Lovett can say they’ve sold 4.6 million albums and never made a dime in royalties from album sales.

    A recording attorney spells it out in his video

    Every artist should know these pitfalls and get them out of the recording contract.

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 3:26 am on July 3, 2011 Permalink |  

    Dogs used in the Military 


    Here is an interesting photo essay on War Dogs

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 1:16 pm on March 24, 2011 Permalink |  

    Broadband Caps and Congestion: Facts and Fiction 


     

     

     

     

     

    The data hogs are the reason the network providers must install data caps to protect the experience for all users. Hang on now.. Here we are talking about data congestion.. Internet providers as with highway managers build out their systems for peak usage, which for the internet usage is the TV prime time viewing hours of 7PM-11PM Monday through Friday. The same goes for our highway system.. it is peaks  between 6-9AM and 4-6PM.  This is the aim of the builders of the systems.. At 4am you might be the only one on a stretch of the highway.. same goes with internet usage.

     

    Perhaps changing the system as we’ve done with our toll highways and electrical billing.. you pay more during high demand hours and less during the off peak hours.  You want your Netflix movie on demand at 7PM you pay more than if you scheduled it to download for you at 4AM in the morning.

     

    On the non toll highways you don’t pay more for increased usage of your private car, you can drive just to the neighborhood convenience store or clear across country and not pay more.  No, Usage Based Billing here.. no meter on your odometer.  In fact, the more miles you drive the more gas you use ergo the more you contribute in taxes to support the building of roads that are designed to help alleviate peak usage slow downs.

    In Canada the major ISP’s fought and got UBB just as Netflix entered the Canadian consumer space.. Watch HD movies each evening and  in 1 week you are at your cap.. no wonder the public screamed with outrage..

    The fact of the matter is that heavy users are the most profitable for the ISP’s

    Yes. Because overall congestion, not individual consumption, is the single driver of network costs. It’s not the “how much” but the “when” that really matters.

    No one wants a global Internet riddled with traffic jams. Not users and certainly not video-on-demand services, cloud companies, MMO games, or any other services requiring bandwidth. The fact that these services require more bandwidth has been a boon for ISPs. They drove consumer demand for broadband, which is much more lucrative than dial-up Internet. Therefore, we all have a stake in ensuring a healthy Internet.

    But if not data caps, then what?

    Our data indicates the solution is twofold: High-bandwidth services need to be good citizens and peak usage needs to be brought under control.

    BitTorrent yields to Priority Traffic

    Since any data traffic that doesn’t induce congestion on a fixed cost network is essentially free; applications can voluntarily play a role in traffic prioritization. And since BitTorrent is a high percentage of global Internet traffic, we have a responsibility to be a part of the solution.

    This was the primary motivator around our release of a new protocol a year ago, called µTP. The protocol essentially senses congestion and self-regulates to avoid contributing to Internet traffic jams.

    Because µTP can never induce network congestion, it doesn’t contribute to an ISP’s cost. An ISP still has regular network maintenance expenses, but remember, with a fixed-cost network, traffic only becomes an economic burden if it contributes to congestion and forces the need for expansion.

    Voluntary good citizenry on behalf of the industry is a start, but it’s not a complete solution to congestion.

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 8:23 pm on March 23, 2011 Permalink |  

    Microsoft Security Advisory 2524375: Fraudulent Digital Certificates Could Allow Spoofing 


    Microsoft advised that  nine fraudulent digital certificates issued by Comodo, a certification authority present in the Trusted Root Certification Authorities Store on all supported versions of Microsoft Windows.

     

    Comodo advised Microsoft on March 16, 2011 that nine certificates had been signed on behalf of a third party without sufficiently validating its identity. These certificates may be used to spoof content, perform phishing attacks, or perform man-in-the-middle attacks against all Web browser users including users of Internet Explorer.

     

    These certificates affect the following Web properties:

    •login.live.com

    •mail.google.com

    •www.google.com

    •login.yahoo.com (3 certificates)

    •login.skype.com

    •addons.mozilla.org

    “Global Trustee”Comodo has revoked these certificates, and they are listed in Comodo’s current Certificate Revocation List CRL. In addition, browsers which have enabled the Online Certificate Status Protocol OCSP will interactively validate these certificates and block them from being used.An update is available for all supported versions of Windows to help address this issue. For more information about this update, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 2524375.

    via Microsoft Security Advisory 2524375: Fraudulent Digital Certificates Could Allow Spoofing.

     
  • David Wayne Johnson 8:09 pm on March 22, 2011 Permalink |  

    >The copyright monopoly is not a property right. It is a limitation of property rights. 


    >

    Copyright is a government-sanctioned private monopoly that limits what people may do with things they have legitimately bought.

    chairAll too often, we hear the copyright lobby talk about theft, about property, about how they are robbed of something when someone makes a copy. This is, well, factually incorrect. It is a use of words that are carefully chosen to communicate that the copyright monopoly is property, or at the very least comparable to property rights.

    This is only rhetoric from the copyright lobby in an attempt to justify the monopoly as righteous: to associate “the copyright monopoly” with a positive word such as “property”. However, when we look at the monopoly in reality, it is a limitation of property rights.

    It is in fact, an infringement of copyright not theft.  Copyright means that you have exclusive rights to ‘copy’ a work of art for a specific period of time.  Copyright == right to copy.

    Let’s compare two pieces of property: a chair and a DVD.

    When I buy a chair, I hand over money for which I get the chair and a receipt. This chair has been mass-produced from a master copy at some sort of plant. After the money has changed hands, this particular chair is mine. There are many more like it, but this one is mine. I have bought one of many identical copies and the receipt proves it.

    As this copy of the chair is mine, exclusively mine, there are a number of things I can do with it. I can take it apart and use the pieces for new hobby projects, which I may choose to sell, give away, put out as exhibits or throw away. I can put it out on the porch and charge neighbors for using it. I can examine its construction, produce new chars from my deductions with some raw material that is also my property, and do whatever I like with the new chairs, particularly including selling them.

    This is where patent comes in, a particular style of chair, its construction methods, and design.

    Part of the design might be trademarked.. i.e. the Mac Bulldog.

     

    All of this is normal for property. It is mine; I may do what I like with it. Build copies, sell, display, whatever.

    As a sidetrack, this assumes that there are no patents on the chair. However, assuming that the invention of the chair is older than 20 years, any filed patents on this particular invention have expired. Therefore, patents are not relevant for this discussion.

    Now, let’s jump to what happens when I buy a movie.

    When I buy a movie, I hand over money and I get the DVD and a receipt. This movie has been mass-produced from a master copy at some sort of plant. After the money has changed hands, this particular movie is mine. There are many more like it, but this one is mine. I have bought one of many identical copies and the receipt proves it.

    Despite the fact that this copy of the movie is mine, exclusively mine, there are a number of things that I may not do with it, prohibited from doing so by the copyright monopoly held by somebody else. I may not use pieces of the movie for new hobby projects that I sell, give away, or put out as exhibits. I may not charge the neighbors for using it on the porch. I may not examine its construction and produce new copies. All of these rights would be normal for property, but the copyright monopoly is a severe limitation on my property rights for items I have legitimately bought.

    Examining the construction and circumventing Digital rights management (DRM) in the United States and slowly growing around the world are becoming signatories of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)

    It is not possible to say that I own the the DVD when viewed in one way but not when viewed in another. There is a clear definition of property, and the receipt says I own the DVD in all its interpretations and aspects. Every part of the shape making up the DVD is mine. The copyright monopoly, however, limits how I can use my own property.

    This doesn’t inherently mean that the copyright monopoly is bad. It does, however, mean that the monopoly cannot be defended from the standpoint that property rights are good. If you take your stand from there, you will come to the conclusion that the copyright monopoly is bad as it is a limitation of property rights.

    Defending the copyright monopoly with the justification that property rights are sacred is quite like defending the death penalty for murder with the justification that life is sacred. There may be other, valid, justifications for defending the copyright monopoly and these limitations of property rights — but that particular chain of logic just doesn’t hold.

    Copyright monopolies have increased in time frame between the date of creation of the work and when the work becomes public domain.  You can thank the movie industry (Disney in particular) for this.  Not only was the extensions of the monopoly extended but it was made retroactive.  Movies such as Bambi, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, or other of Walt’s creations would now be in the public domain. 

     
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