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Everything posted by Mark

  1. I am probably reacting a little strongly to this icon nonesense, but... (heheh) : Got my hands on an older (2004-ish) Acer Travelmate yesterday, from my brother's friend. My bro wanted to install Linux on the thing. MSE was installed, so I got the full experience. There were 2 scheduled tasks : one to warn about end of life on every boot, and the other was for a monthly reminder. That's a lot of reminding. I got to see the at-boot warning, same as posted by John (with screen cap) in post #5 above. You can't miss this one. And on top of this, you get the ... tray icon hijack (lol). I didn't mention it before, but why not use the big popup warning (see post #5) even on machines that don't have MSE onboard ; this would be a balloon tip alternative. I truely feel as though they've messed this up. With the icon I mean. The big popup is plenty. On-boot + monthly = enough warnings for that eventual Pontius Pilate slap behind the head Oh and when I said some have third party AVs, I meant all versions including the free ones (Avira, AVG, Avast...). I don't have numbers but there a lot of free AV users out there (non MSE). They've bent to pressure by allowing MSE to continue on XP, for a while. My view is : let the AV do its job properly, even though XP is end-of-life. Or don't allow its use and let folks get another (free) AV instead, as was the original plan. To be honest, I'll tell anyone with XP and MSE to just dump MSE. [/rant] Now I gotta find me a distro that sees the wireless card on this old Acer and plays nice with the rest of the hardware...
  2. Ok, let's go over what my beef is, because I do get your point but I don't think you're getting mine : - People who ignore balloon tips may also have no clue as to why the MSE icon is red with a white X. These same people may not even know how to launch the MSE interface so how are they going to see the big warning inside MSE ? - Your observations concern only those who have Security Essentials as antivirus. Those who use a third party AV (or no AV at all) will not have this issue - this warning. Which is why I brought up balloon tips. Other ideas of notification are welcome. - The AV tray icon, as you've stated above, should serve as a monitor for the AV Service and general state of the program ; when a problem arises, the MSE icon turns to orange or red. Orange with an exclamation point when a scan hasn't been performed in a long time, or red with a white X for seriously outdated defs or other important problems. Tray icons have been around a long time. Speaking for myself, they catch my eye when something is wrong or when their status changes. My peripheral vision catches them when something is different, flashing or whatnot. I can't help it, and that's good in my book. Imagine when one icon, especially the AV (we're security minded folks after all), turns to red. And stays that way, day in / day out. My brain is wired to react. Re-wiring takes only a short amount of time though, and sooner than later I won't notice the icon anymore. Is that good ? Nope, because I'd have no idea if anything was wrong with the AV. That's my beef. AV icons should allow us to monitor the AV. Period. Unexperienced users with XP + MSE have just lost an important notification tool. There must be a better way to notify them. Balloon tips is just one idea. Some people don't see them, I know, but the same goes with the hijacked MSE tray icon, which shouldn't have been hijacked in the first place.
  3. A nagging balloon tip would be better than this. Don't mess with an AV icon just to "remind people" they need to spend money on a new MS system and new hardware while they're at it. And what about folks who don't have MSE on XP ? How is M$ reminding them ? Don't get me wrong : I'm not against moving away from XP, for those users who are going to be at risk (those who surf and can't take care of an outdated system properly, etc...). I am against hijacking a tray icon which serves a purpose. They've kept MSE alive for XP, then let users benefit from basic features like tray notifications. If not, then just pull the plug on MSE (for XP) and stop playing games. On a side note : I've installed a little program named Windows Defender Status Manager (from ITknowledge24) on W8 installs I have ; this creates a tray icon for Windows Defender (aka MSE) in W8/8.1. That's how much I care about having an AV tray icon, because MS just doesn't get it... and have proven that point again with this silly stunt for XP. Plain silly.
  4. Technically, the AV is still working and updated. The icon is for the AV, not for fearmongering. They can try to justify this any way they want. It's still bad judgement in my view. But I do see your point (*in their mind*), though I don't agree they are right at all in doing it this way.
  5. I thought I had one XP VM with MSE, but I don't (replaced MSE for Avira a while back). The tray icon should not be hijacked this way. I look at AV tray icons to verify whether there is a situation with the antivirus, or not. With this stupid red with white X on it now, you can't know if there's a real problem with MSE. Red icon with checkmark would have been much smarter. Bad judgment call, M$.
  6. I've just updated on my main machine (dual boot > W7 is main system). Easy update, close to 900MB in size. - The update was listed as "Important" but was not ticked for download/installation, so not a priority it seems. Not yet anyway. - Unlike the 8.1 upgrade from W8, this service pack did not break Classic Shell. Pleasant surprise, so to speak. For me, this means no unscheduled visits to family/friends to undo a mess (like 8.1 upgrades sometimes do...). - I haven't spent any quality time with the new update, but the only visible change for me after reboot was the pinned MS store icon to the Desktop taskbar. I unpinned and all is well lol. Haven't looked at the Metro side of things for changes. No plans to go there any time soon either..
  7. I am afraid W9 won't bring back what *we* need. When deciding to build W8 the way it is, they (M$ brass) undoubtedly paid huge amounts of money to marketing gurus / tech market actuarians to evaluate as many variables as possible before making their final move. They wanted a big piece of the tablet / mobile market, so lucrative right now. The number crunchers somehow underestimated (badly) the huge backlash from the apparently diminishing and non confrontational desktop/power users. Oopsy... The numbers are showing that desktop and regular laptop sales are on a steady decline. That's bad news for us, because devices that are hot sellers are mobile/touch. But still, I'm hoping that the next Windows will offer a functional Desktop mode.
  8. M$ is too big and has invested too much into making W8 what it is, to back down now. The corporate Ego is enormous, their big players have promised the plan would work to investors... It's like asking a cruise ship to make a quick left turn ; it owns the sea so it wasn't designed to turn (much) so why bother, why care. They owned the sea, past tense. Windows 8 does have a Frankenstein-ish feel about it, more and more with upgrades it seems. Hard to believe it could get even worse..
  9. I didn't know about this app. Looks like it works well, for those who need (want ?) to run apps from the good ol' Desktop. That company makes Start8, which we know works well as a "make W8/W8.1 work almost like W7", a must for me anyway (I use Classic Shell though, which is similar). My main box is W7 though and I won't change that anytime soon. This ModernMix has one caveat, as far as I'm concerned : using it would mean I like or need to use Metro apps, which I don't. I use W8.1 on my small 11" laptop because I got the cheap $15 W8 upgrade and wanted to benefit from a clean Windows install (custom upgrade), over the HP OEM Win7 I had ; that was riddled with bloatware and now I have a clean install which does make a difference. Don't use that laptop much, but with Classic Shell, it's almost Win7. Don't need to run any apps, just Desktop programs TYVM.
  10. Congratulations Ron on the 40K . That's a testament to your implication and dedication here. Note : I always like a good challenge, so I looked for that post... for about 10 minutes. Didn't find it. Not that I need another license, it was just for the challenge. Since I didn't find it, I'm thinking you've pulled a late April fool's prank on us. Now that you're hot stuff around here with 40K posts, can you throw your weight around and get us a bunch of new forum smilies ? (would have inserted whistling smilie here instead..) Thanks
  11. Thanks Yeah, with proper management, she can go far. She is also a very smart girl with a strong family behind her. I felt like her The Voice coach let her down by not pushing her onto the scene more quickly when the season ended, but others in the industry had noticed and were just waiting for the right moment. I kinda hope she makes it onto the US/UK music scenes some day, as well. One last clip, from The Voice : Over and out
  12. Some local talent (Québec) I thought I'd share. These two were in the Québec version of "The Voice" last year. He (Jael) was a semi-finalist and she (Charlotte) was a finalist. They decided to team up for a few YT clips. Charlotte, in my opinion, has was it takes to become a big star. Not a surprise to learn she is a model just by looking at her, she's 19 y/o now and just getting started with a probable singing career. She recently went to France and did a duet on a Jean-Jacques Goldman song, and it looks like she will stay there for a while. She has all the attributes to make it over there ; she doesn't have a power voice which they don't like anyway, her range, tone and pitch control are fabulous. Plus she has that look that is very French haute couture model. For marketing purposes in France, they've simplified her name to "Cardin" only, instead of Cardin-Goyer. Another thing I like about her are her musical preferences and influences, which include folk and jazz. She's perfectly bilingual (French/English). And she plays the piano. And this one she did just over a year ago ; a commercial for a line of clothing : Hope you enjoy.
  13. If I'm reading it correctly, you get a $100 rebate only at the Microsoft store, for new Microsoft machines running W8.1 (ARM Surface talbets excluded). The new machine needs to be above $599 to be considered for the rebate. You can either visit the online store with an XP system, which will be detected, and the rebate would then offered onscreen, or, bring in an XP machine at a MS store directly and trade it in to get the rebate. If they really want to push 8.1 on XP users, they should offer the $15 upgrade they had at the beginning of W8 and let us decide how/where we install it. But they don't want us to just upgrade the system, they want us to dump our old hardware as well.
  14. Oh I agree. My angle was more on the playing side. "0" or "1" picking is what that particular robot is doing, meaning one single picking action possible : pick or don't pick. This done via a (guessing) pneumatic actuator, which operates from "0" or "1" signals only. This yields a very "dry" (or cold), monotonous sound. No nuances possible. The drummer robot seems to have better equipment, with more range of motion and variable striking force. Guitar playing is all about finger/hand agility and robots aren't there yet.
  15. The guitar sound produced by this "robot" is pretty unidimensional. The "0" or "1" picking is cold. No bending, no palm work, no working across the pickups, etc... 2 minutes of this and my ears want a break. The drummer robot, on the other hand, sounds a bit better equipped for the job. And he looks sooo cool... Visually speaking : WoW !
  16. Mark

    XP user

    Setting up layers of protection in XP to counteract end of vulnerability patches is not for everyone. Intermediate-to-advanced users may do Ok, but I worry about the less skilled, and there are tons of them out there. I would go as far as recommending waiting until Windows 9 (next year), but that's about it for most novice users running XP. W9 should be more user friendly than W8/8.1 Beyond that point, running an unsupported OS will become more risky, and painful. Painful because less programs will run on it, newer hardware won't be compatible, etc... That's just my opinion.
  17. Yes, they play the acosutic harp as well. Thank you for that, FF.. Did I say thanks, FF ?
  18. @Samuel : believe it or not, here's another Vista fan (me), though I like W7 a little better for resource management, mostly. Kinda liked XP too, having suffered from Win9x blue screens for years, but stopped using it (XP) as soon as I "saw" Vista. I have W8.1 on a laptop and kinda like it as well, BUT : Classic Shell gives me the Desktop and Start button/menu I need, or else I can't work with Metro on a non touch device. My daughter has a new hybrid laptop/tablet, and W8 (8.1 now) is kinda fun on that one in tablet mode, BUT : she uses and loves Classic Shell for real work, from the Desktop. Very curious to see Windows 9, due out next year. New MS boss surely knows what needs to be done, now that the old guard is out. No more excuses, just give us a UI choice we can live with. And work with..
  19. The 80s !!! Probably the craziest decade for music ever. So much different stuff, some horrible and some brilliant. Ok, Pink Floyd's The Wall was released on Nov.30 1979, but I still say it's an 80s album A couple goodies from the 80s : Enjoy
  20. BIG Rush fan here. Red Barchetta is one of my all-time favorites, too. Along with these (and many more ) : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zmrz0_oqe4A (for the curious : "YYZ" is the airport code for Toronto's Pearson, and means arriving home for the Rush gang after touring) The guys 35 years ago. Alex kinda looks like Peter Frampton. Wow !
  21. They didn't give us a choice on the UI because they wanted to force us into learning and accepting, so we'd stop buying iPads, iPhones, Android tablets and phones. Didn't work, so the numbers say (loudly and clearly). Now they have to offer us something we can all like with W9. Anybody hear heads rolling before that happens ? Sinofsky, Ballmer ; anybody else ? I've actually tried W8 (and later 8.1) on a hybrid Sony laptop/tablet and it's a lot of fun with touch. For real work, there's Classic Shell to the rescue, even though Microsoft doesn't want us using it For my desktop machine, W7 will stay on. I do have 8.1 on a small underpowered laptop which had 7 before ; I'll admit I prefer W8.1 on that machine because it is a little bit quicker now, overall. On machines with power to spare, the speed advantage pretty much disappears. Let's see what W9 brings to the table.
  22. A frightening number from that article : an estimated 500 000 people in China die each year from pollution. And take a look at this : http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/wp/2013/10/21/chinese-city-shut-down-by-off-the-charts-pollution/ Industrialization does that. I'll have to look up what's going on with India and other *emerging* countries as well. I live roughly 400 miles North of the Canada/US border (somewhere above the Great Lakes, slightly to the East), and dominent winds being from the South West, we got a lot of *stuff* from US industries. Particles, acid rain, you name it. There are better controls now and many industries have closed, so the situation has improved here. We pollute too, and the wind brings our junk up to the Arctic
  23. @Ron : I kinda like that *White Rihanna* singer from... Russia ? Anyway, I started listening to her and thought... wait a minute, this isn't Rihanna's tone, it's more... Beyoncé ? Funny thing is I went and listened to it again via YT directly and started reading the comments ; someone there noticed the same thing I did lol. Right now I'm inspired by all the cover versions posted here lately, so here's one cover I can't resist : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJtRJn24z-Y
  24. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone :-)
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