Probz.com/WindowsReinstall.com Newsletter (Winrag) - ( 14th April 2005 )

 

Season 2 - Issue 11

 

 (c) www.Windowsreinstall.com, Mark Walmsley 2005

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Welcome

  

Welcome, its time for issue 11, season 2. This is the last issue of this season. As you may notice it is only issue 11, but that was due to an issue being dropped earlier in the season. Next month is the 2nd birthday of this site, check it out as we have some great plans for it. Also a big thanks this month goes out to Kevin J. Vella of Uniblue Systems who supplied 2 articles for this months newsletter. If you have an article you wish us to cover, then feel free to send it us for possible inclusion in future issues.

Anyway that's enough for now, see you all next issue.  

Mark

  

If this is your first newsletter then feel free to read previous issues. Click here to go to the main index page.

Remember at anytime you can unsubscribe. The subscribe/unsubscribe link is at the bottom of this page, click here.

Anyway, we hope you enjoy this issue, if you wish to have a subject covered, wish to send feedback or have an article of your own you want featured then mail newsletter@windowsreinstall.com

 

    

Software - What makes a computer run slow

 

Why do computers slow down?

By Kevin J. Vella

Uniblue Systems

If you are like me, you’re probably always sitting at your computer running all sorts of programs at work and, in your free time, surfing the web looking for all sorts of information, listening to MP3s, watching a couple of DVD movies, and dedicating some serious time to your favourite games.  What remains of the day is dedicated to shut-eye.  Even food is mostly consumed in front of the screen.

If you are like me, your computer is slow!  Mind you, my machine is not an old antiquarian piece but a two year old Pentium 4 with some fancy bells and whistles that I have added to transform it into the computing equivalent of General Lee of the infamous Dukes of Hazard.

If you are like me, you are at a point where you are thinking that your hardware is not powerful enough to support the more recent games and the latest applications, be they for work or pleasure. 

Computers slow down for a variety of reason.  However, it doesn’t have anything to do with outdated technology except for gaming where graphics cards rule.  Even here, however I believe you can still make some serious changes that will boost the performance of your PC – but “unleashing the dragon inside your computer” is the theme for next week’s article. 

Today’s programs are power-hungry applications that eat away at your processing power greatly slowing your computer especially if yours is a couple of years old.  Large amounts of RAM are required to store all the data from displaying icons and images to streaming music and playing the appropriate sound effects to creating temporary files on your hard drive for recovery to making sure that your internet connection is up and running all the time.  Windows constantly switches data from your RAM to your hard drive storing the less important data in the latter and recalling it to the former when it becomes important.  This creates more and more delays and bottlenecks and may eventually crash your system.  What’s worse is that if you don’t have some decent firewall, anti-virus and spyware software, your PC is probably infected with background processes that are working away doing harmful or unimportant stuff that further increases the burden on your processor and RAM.

If you are like me, you will have experienced your Windows screen freezing or stalling for a few seconds as you switch from one program to another, at times making you wait for as long as half a minute.  This morning, in fact, I was trying out a performance optimiser that froze my computer for about four minutes. 

However, problems of delays and related glitches are, more often than not, caused by software conflicts and bad settings rather than insufficient hardware power.  Yes, hardware does effect BUT, in most cases, you can maximise what you have and postpone the investment of another $1000+ on an new system further in the future. 

By optimizing all your system settings and by monitoring resource usage more carefully, these problems can be avoided, resulting in a faster, smoother and more stable computing experience.

   

Useful Software on this subject

SpeedUpYourPC - WinTasks

   

2  Software Review - Legal Peer to Peer File Sharing 

  

 Boutique PR Agency Specializing in Interactive Entertainment to Represent Peer Impact, the First Peer-to-Peer Network Supported By All Major Record Labels

 Wurld Media today announced that they have signed an agreement with Kohnke Communications, a public relations agency specializing in interactive entertainment. Kohnke Communications will handle public relations for Peer ImpactTM, Wurld Media's legal peer-to-peer (P2P) service. The first P2P supported by all of the four major record labels, Peer Impact's unique technology offers members cash back for sharing legal content. Wurld Media is currently expanding Peer Impact's catalogue to include digital content in the areas of interactive entertainment and motion pictures.

"As we extend our content offerings into the video game space, Kohnke Communications' expertise in the industry will be invaluable," said Gregory Kerber, Chairman and CEO of Wurld Media. "Peer Impact is the leader in the P2P space with unsurpassed security and efficiency, and we anticipate announcing significant interactive entertainment partnerships shortly."

"We look forward to sharing Wurld Media's very interesting business story, and working with them as they expand into interactive entertainment," said Erica Kohnke Kain, President and Founder of Kohnke Communications. "Our goal is to ensure that this useful service is well received by those looking to safely distribute digital content online."

Q: What is Peer Impact?

A: Peer Impact™ is a new online digital content distribution network that provides legal, peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing services for its members. Its technology offers Peer Impact members a secure online space to purchase and share music and in the near future, other digital content as well. At the same time, Peer Impact strives to ensure that content owners and proprietary rights holders alike, such as record labels, musical artists and publishers, are paid appropriately for all music shared on the Peer Impact network.

 

 

Q: How is Peer Impact different from other peer-to-peer (P2P) and/or paid services?

A: Peer Impact™ allows members who have purchased content from the service to market and redistribute it to other members. When a sale has been made and inventory is drawn from a member's shared folder, that member is rewarded with cash credit known as Peer Cash™. Peer Cash can then be used to purchase additional digital music and other content via the service.

  

 

Q: Is Peer Impact legal?

A: Yes, Peer Impact™ is the first authorized, legal peer-to-peer (P2P) embraced by the major record labels. Peer Impact is also finalizing negotiations with many of the best known Independent labels to ensure that our members have the greatest variety of music to choose from.

For more information on Peer Impact, visit www.peerimpact.com .

  

   

3  Game Preview - Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

 

    

Electronic Arts and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment are pleased to announce the Harry Potter and the Goblet of FireTM videogame, scheduled for a November 2005 release in conjunction with the Warner Bros. Pictures film based on J.K. Rowling's fourth book. In the game, players experience the thrilling moments of the movie and put their magic to the ultimate test in co-operative play with up to two friends.

"Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is the fifth Harry Potter videogame we have created, and we are incredibly excited with the fresh innovations that the team has brought to the game," said Harvey Elliott, Executive Producer at EAUK. "With high anticipation for the film and our strong relationship with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, we have been able to develop a game that complements the film in this exciting addition to the Harry Potter franchise."

"Working with EA, we look forward to offering players a highly developed Harry Potter game with Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire," said Jason Hall, Senior Vice President for Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. "The game will possess the extremely creative aspects of the Harry Potter world captured in both the film and the book, giving fans a complete interactive experience."

In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry is mysteriously selected as the fourth competitor in the dangerous Triwizard TournamentTM. Each contestant in this international competition must confront a fire-breathing dragon, rescue friends from the icy depths of the Black Lake, and navigate the twisting mysteries of a vast, dangerous maze. Players will experience all the thrills of the movie - from the QuidditchTM World Cup campsite to a heart-stopping duel with Lord VoldemortTM himself!

Harry, Ron, and Hermione are all playable characters, modeled after their big-screen counterparts. In this game, an all-new spell-casting system allows players to feel the magic for the first time as the controller shakes and reacts with every flick of the wand. Players can also team up with friends in co-operative play to combine their magic and produce more powerful spells than ever before!

Under development by EA's UK Studio, the team behind the worldwide success of the Harry Potter library of games, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is scheduled for release for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, PSP®handheld entertainment system, Xbox® video game system from Microsoft, Nintendo GameCube®, Nintendo DS®, Game Boy® Advance, and Windows PC. This game has not yet been PEGI rated.
  

 

 

 

 

 

   

4   Internet - WindowsReinstall.com

windowsreinstall.com

Our Main site www.windowsreinstall.com has been and is still going through major updates and changes that many of you will be interested in. Sections have been updated and changed, new sections have been added, here is a brief list of changes and updates presently available.

Some of the Operating Systems 

Windows XP Pro X64, Windows XP Pro, Windows XP Home

Windows .net server, Windows ME, Windows 2000, Windows 98

Some of the Sections

DownloadsBuild a Computer, CD-Rom Support

Common Errors, Preinstall Checklist, Speed up your PC 

 

    

Much more has been added and changed, check out the main site from www.windowsreistall.com 

 

   

5  Software -  Create your own 3D Games for £9.99

Millions of Ways to Create Your Own Cool 3D Games!


Ever wanted to create your own first person shooter but don't have the knowledge? Well now you can create almost any kind of 3D game using Focus Multimedia's low-cost, easy-to-use game creation kit that doesn't require any computer programming knowledge!

Create Your Own 3D Games gives everyone the chance to build their own PC games in seconds. With just a few clicks of your mouse, you can create a uniquely playable game that can be shared with friends and family.

A wide variety of exciting game scenarios can be created to suit all ages and abilities. Games and levels are easy to create with the simple-to-use Scene Editor – create first person shooters, horror and war games, or lap-based driving games to name but a few. Choose your own surroundings, such as a jungle, cartoon worlds or even a different universe! Import your own images via a scanner or let your imagination run wild with silly graphics and zany games in this entirely customisable gaming program.

Key Features:

 

  • Instant and amazing results in seconds

  • Random Game Option – let your computer create a uniquely playable game for you with just one click of the mouse

  • Create a variety of exciting game scenarios with over 360 pre-made scenes

  • Place enemies, objects and items where you want them to be with the Placement Editor

  • Over 500 3D objects

  • Over 320 sounds

  • MP3 music support – includes 180 MP3 files

  • Add personalised sound effects to games

  • Entirely customisable – utilise or scan in your own images

  • Import your own 3D models

  • Save games as .exe files to share with your friends

  • Swap games via disc or via the net with other users

Craig Johnson, Managing Director of Focus Multimedia commented: "With literally millions of gaming options available, Create Your Own 3D Games is an exciting prospect for every serious games enthusiast. This latest release will be joining the Focus Essential range of PC CD-ROMs, providing consumers with a fantastic product at a low price point."

Create Your Own 3D Games is available now with a recommended retail price of £9.99 including VAT. The title can be purchased from all good retailers of PC CD-ROM software, or direct from www.fmselect.co.uk.

 

 

6  Internet - Online Casino Reviews

   

 

So you fancy a flutter, well why not try a few online Casino's with instant play and large new user bonuses, if you are anything like ourselves you probably feel a bit weary about trying these, so armed with the company card we went exploring, here are a few Casino's we tried, and what we thought of them.

The best way it seems to play is simply signup with the amount you wish to spend, get your new user bonus, then go to a different casino. This way you get to play with the most amount of money.

Most of these Casino's also offer guest accounts where you can test and play for free. So there's no reason not to check them out.

     

Click image above to go to site

CLUBDICE CASINO - 8/10

  • LIVE DEALERS
  • OVER 70 GAMES
  • 10 PROGRESSIVE JACKPOTS
  • 24/7 ONLINE CUSTOMER CARE
  • VIP CLUBS
  • EXCLUSIVE PROMOTIONS

For players convenience, Club Dice Casino offers built-in games and financial gaming logs for checking previously played gaming results. History and detailed information is always readily available for the players convenience as well.

Game history transactions include the start of the initial game, bet and win amounts, detailed game results and more. Financial transaction histories, which display all cash-outs and deposits, can also be accessed anytime while online.

Great Bonuses

eg

First Deposit $50 receive $50
First Deposit $75 receive $75
First Deposit $100 receive $100

24/7 Support available by phone and email. 

FAIR GAMING

Club Dice Casino has the expertise and professionalism of knowing the importance of establishing a fair gaming environment for its players. It is outstanding in a hotter than hot gaming market by its daily on-hand approach.

Club Dice Casino holds a gaming license from the government of Antigua and Barbuda. It is regulated and monitored by the Antiguan gaming commission. Moreover, Club Dice Casino guarantees its commitment to fair gaming. Its professional, supportive, and secure environment allows for a winning experience.

The "Dealer" is powered by a hi-tech computer at Club Dice Casino. To ensure that the performance of this computer is truly random, a sophisticated RNG (Random Number Generator) is utilized.

The Random number generator has been tested by leading international accounting and auditing firms on Club Dice Casino software, By running millions of game rounds and analyzing their outcomes, the system is being periodically tested to ensure its ongoing accuracy.

In addition to that, the Club Dice Casino average payout percentage, which is the percentage of total winnings to total wagered amounts, is posted online, and reviewed on a monthly basis to ensure the systems ongoing randomness and fairness.

       

Click image above to go to site

CARNIVAL CASINO - 8/10

Table Games: Machine Games - Video Poker
Baccarat Video Poker
Blackjack  
Caribbean Poker Machine Games - Slot Machines:
Casino War 3-Reel Standard Slots
Craps 3-Reel Max Bet 2 Slots
Keno 3-Reel Bonus Slots
Pai Gow Poker 3-Reel 3-Line and 5-Line Slots
Red Dog Poker 3-Reel Progressive Slots
Roulette 5-Reel Standard Slots
Sic Bo 5-Reel Progressive Slots

GREAT BONUSES

E.g. Deposit $20 - $99 receive 100% = Deposit €20 - €99 receive 100%
E.g. Deposit $300 or more receive 200% = Deposit €300 or more receive 200%

24/7 Support available by phone and email. 

FAIR GAMING

Carnival Casino is fully licensed by the government of Antigua and Barbuda.
The payout percentage, which is the percentage of the total wins out of total bets, is audited on a monthly basis and is displayed at Carnival Casino's web site, so that you can be sure the games are fair and honest.

Click image above to go to site

 

MONACO GOLD CASINO - 9/10

Over 70 Games

GREAT BONUSES

Deposit 75 €/£/$ get 75 €/£/$ Free - You play with 150 €/£/$
Deposit 100 €/£/$ get 100 €/£/$ Free - You play with 200 €/£/$

24/7 Support available by phone and email. 

 

FAIR GAMING

Monaco Gold Casino has the expertise and professionalism of knowing the importance of establishing a fair gaming environment for its players. It is outstanding in a hotter than hot gaming market by its daily on-hand approach.

Monaco Gold Casino holds a gaming license from the government of Antigua and Barbuda. It is regulated and monitored by the Antiguan gaming commission. Moreover, Monaco Gold Casino guarantees its commitment to fair gaming. Its professional, supportive, and secure environment allows for a winning experience.

The "Dealer" is powered by a hi-tech computer at Monaco Gold Casino. To ensure that the performance of this computer is truly random, a sophisticated RNG (Random Number Generator) is utilized.

The Random number generator has been tested by leading international accounting and auditing firms on Monaco Gold Casino software, By running millions of game rounds and analyzing their outcomes, the system is being periodically tested to ensure its ongoing accuracy.

In addition to that, the Monaco Gold Casino average payout percentage, which is the percentage of total winnings to total wagered amounts, is posted online, and reviewed on a monthly basis to ensure the systems ongoing randomness and fairness.

For players convenience, Monaco Gold Casino offers built-in games and financial gaming logs for checking previously played gaming results. History and detailed information is always readily available for the players convenience as well.

Game history transactions include the start of the initial game, bet and win amounts, detailed game results and more. Financial transaction histories, which display all cash-outs and deposits, can also be accessed anytime while online.

    

 

7  Hardware - Gaming Monitors

 

 BenQ - FP71V+ & FP91V+ Monitors

   

BenQ this week, announced two new additions to its award-winning LCD monitor line-up that feature superior response times and resolution capabilities. The new 17-inch FP71V+ model is the first 5ms grey-to-grey fast response time LCD monitor on the market, and the new 19-inch FP91V+ features an ultra-quick 6ms grey-to-grey response time. Both monitors are ideal for gaming, home entertainment and other applications that feature the full spectrum of rapidly changing colours.

Traditionally, the response time for LCD monitors have been measured by counting the length of time in which the monitor displays from a pure black to a pure white image, and then from white to black. Most real-world applications however utilize colours in different levels of grey, which takes longer to display. Therefore response time measurements in grey-to-grey are more applicable.

The FP71V+ and FP91V+ has BenQ's latest advance in LCD technology, the Advanced Motion Accelerator (AMA). This clever chip accelerates the twisting speed of the liquid crystal by increasing the voltage, making it possible to shorten the grey-to-grey response time, keeping images sharper and ghost-free.

In addition, the FP71V+ and FP91V+ monitors feature the latest polished screens giving high brightness levels and contrast ratios that ensure brilliant image quality. Whether it be movie viewing, playing video games, or creating presentations for the office, the FP71V+ utilizes its 5ms grey-to-grey response time to provide unmatched dynamic screen motion and smooth, full-motion visuals that help in the prevention of image "ghosting."

Both the FP71V+ and FP91V+ models come standard with D-Sub and DVI-D inputs. The FP91V+ features built-in speakers with SRS surround sound. With high brightness ratings of 400 cd/m2, the FP71V+ and FP91V+ are equipped to deliver optimum results for high-end multimedia content. For clear and sharp pictures, each model offers high contrast ratio levels of 500:1 and 450:1, respectively.

Both models also feature BenQ's proprietary "Senseye" digital-enhancement technology that automatically and dynamically improves image quality, adjusts brightness and darkness levels, performs colour-mapping procedures, and reduces jagged edges on images. Users select a preset mode of operation that corresponds to the content that they are viewing. Senseye adjusts contrast, colour and sharpness settings, which significantly enhances the display of graphics-intensive applications such as gaming, entertainment and professional multimedia presentations.

Technical Specifications

FP71V+ LCD Monitor
17" 1280 x 1024 high resolution
5ms grey to grey fast response time
Polish screen for brilliant image quality
400 cd/m2 high brightness
500:1 high contrast ratio
Built-in speakers
D-Sub/DVI dual input

FP91V+ LCD Monitor
19" 1280x1024 high resolution
6ms grey to grey fast response time
Polish screen for brilliant image quality
400 cd/m2 high brightness
450:1 high contrast ratio
Built-in speakers with SRS surround sound effect
D-Sub/DVI dual input

 

  

 

8 Software - How to Improve DVD Playback on Your PC

   

by Kevin J. Vella
Public Relations Manager
Uniblue Systems

Up to a few years ago, when computers were much less powerful than they are today, watching movies required specialised hardware that was rather expensive. With the advent of better processors, better movie encoding and decoding technology, and Digital Versatile Disk (DVD) technology, you can comfortably watch your favourite movie on your PC without much trouble. Or can you?

Modern computer hardware technology allows you to watch a DVD inexpensively - all you need is a DVD drive, a decent CPU and good DVD software that allows you to run your movie. However, even when playing DVD with the most powerful computer systems you can experience glitches (e.g., the screen freezes for a split second or video and audio playback are not synchronised for a few seconds). These glitches are called stuttering. So how can you minimise and avoid stuttering? Or how can you improve overall DVD playback on your PC?

What Causes the Problem?
Dedicated hardware (e.g. a DVD player) does only one thing - decoding movies to play them for your entertainment. Hence, you do not experience any stuttering. Many times, though, it is either not convenient to buy or use a DVD player. In these cases, you would play your DVDs on your PC. Computer processors have to keep up with a number of processes while running DVDs. Moreover, they can only do one thing at a time. So they will prioritise among processes indiscriminately and they will switch rapidly from one task to another giving you the impression that they are handling several tasks at the same time.

Each running task gets a small slice of CPU time before the CPU is handed over the next task. If your DVD decoding software doesn't get enough of those slices, it won't have time to decode all the frames in your DVD movie at high quality. The result, as you probably know, is dropped frames, stutter, and other annoying effects.

What Can You Do?
What can you do about prevent the DVD decoding software from running out of CPU time? There are a few things you should always do before watching DVD movies on your computer:

1. Reboot the computer before you begin to make sure the operating system is completely stable.

2. Terminate all programs that aren't absolutely necessary, ideally everything except the DVD software and some system processes. Use WinTasks to terminate as many processes as possible. By using WinTasks, you can terminate many background processes that don't show up in the CTRL + ALT + DEL dialog box. As long as these are not system processes or anti-virus programs, they can usually be stopped for better results. When you have terminated all unnecessary processes, save the current process configuration to a preset. This way you can simply click the Preset button to stop and start the right processes before playing DVDs.
3. Make sure you have the latest version of DirectX and DX Media.

4. Try increasing the priority of the DVD software. You may have to try a few different settings before you find the optimal priority for your system. Priority settings can also be saved to a WinTasks preset.

5. Make sure you have the latest drivers for your DVD drive.

6. Lower you screen resolution and colour depth to 800 x 600 and 16-bit colour when playing DVDs (32-bit colour may be preferable on some graphics cards).

Click Here to Learn More about WinTasks 5 Professional

      

Conclusion

 

Well that's it for this month, I hope you all enjoyed this issue, and we look forward to seeing you next month, 

Best Regards

Mark 

webmaster@windowsreinstall.com

 

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