Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Bogus claims that your computer is reporting errors to Microsoft

I have a theory that if you refer to the company or companies involved in this by name they will be filtered or down-ranked by Google as the principals involved in this have been attempting to manipulate search results and forum comments.

I cannot see why a post that I made on this does not feature higher and those that mention the firms but are on sites such as and the Guardian are higher.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - a telephone scam

I just got off the phone with a particularly nasty person from what I can only determine was from Kota, India.

They were claiming that our computer was sending out error messages and that they were a Microsoft Certified Professional and if we visited their website they could help fix the problem.

The website in question was (no link here on purpose). The female on the phone directed us to the site and wanted us to click on the connect to a technician link 3. This link attempted to download a program called soft3.exe. Seeing as we were connecting to the fastheal site using an iPad iOS did not know what to do with program so we were safe.

Doing some research on this activity I found a number of other websites that have had dealings with these jokers. The most enlightening was the one I found on the Guardian website:
You can read all about the antics of this operation for yourself. Needless to say the caller was offensive and resorted to calling me a liar and used profane language.

The call was ended with the caller threatening to hack into my partners computer, she was the one that took the call originally, and make it so that she could not use it again. All this time I was connected to the Internet on another Windows computer and so far nothing has gone wrong with it or any other of the many computers that are on our netowrk.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Not much to report

I don't like the Windows 8 interface and I see no reason to purchase a PC at the present time. I would love a Mac Book Air but I am too cheap to pony-up the $1,000 to get one. My $300 Windows machines, running Windows 7, are working just fine. If I needed a new computer I would live with W8 as I am of the opinion that you are far better off leaving your hardware exactly as it came.

I continue to be perplexed by those that want to steal Windows 8, looking for ways to install it and activate it without paying. As far as I know there is no such thing as a Windows 8 Loader by Daz or anyone else. In fact I am so disinterested in Windows 8 piracy that I can't  be bothered to do any research. If I were to re-o/s a computer it would be to Windows 7 or Ubuntu.

I am waiting to see how the Microsoft Surface with Windows 8 Pro (the x86 version as opposed to RT) is going to be received critically. My guess is that it is going to be deemed overpriced and those that bought an RT device are going to be "pissed" when MS reduce the price of the Pro version to what they were trying to sell the RT device for!

On the tablet front, for what I use one for the original iPad is all that I need. Sure, there are sexier ones, with better displays and faster processors, but for what I use it for.................

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Ontario Drive Clean Myth

How can disconnecting your car battery to get your car to pass the Drive clean test be a myth? (Yet)

The testing of emissions by checking the cars computer was only introduced January 2013 (or will be). The creation of a myth before the tests actually have started seems a little difficult to believe.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Flvstreamer - Sanity failed

The warning:

WARNING: HandleInvoke, Sanity failed, no string method in involve packet

Seems to occur when the stream gets corrupted during the download. It can be fixed by closing the get_iplayer window and restarting the download. It should pick up where it left off. If not you may have to delete the partial download and/or use the /force switch.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Would I buy a Microsoft Surface with Windows 8 Pro?

Probably not.

I currently use a 11.6" Windows laptop and portability is my prime consideration. I also own the original iPad and an iPad 3. I have tried the Asus Transformer Prime. To perform all the activities that I carry out I have established that I need a "proper" keyboard. I have tried doing what I do on a tablet and have concluded that I still prefer an attached keyboard. My requirements are probably reasonably unique and the vast majority may not need a keyboard.

If I were to replace my portable hardware I am more likely to opt for an 11" Mac Book Air. The reasons for this are mainly that I do not like the Windows 8 interface and that I prefer a desktop with no icons (or tiles) - as can be achieved using Windows 7 or OSX.

As I said before there appear to be those that claim that reviews of the Surface that you find on "box store" websites are "fake". I don't think that this is the case, more likely that those that have bought the Surface are those that are more likely to write a positive review. Those that have bought are also those that are going to justify their purchase regardless of how good the purchase is. Bad reviews ARE likely to be made by those that have purchased an iPad or an Android tablet - the justification process is at play here as well, in spades!

There have been things that I have learned reading some of the reviews of the Surface on the Box Store websites:
  1. The Surface will work with any Bluetooth keyboard. So does an iPad or an Android tablet, but you don't have to use the MS Touch keyboard and can purchase the Surface without a keyboard. I personally use an iPad BT keyboard with a Windows PC without problems.
  2. There is a general lack of understanding of RT and the capabilities of this o/s and the version of Office that comes with Surface.
  3. The most common con is the lack of apps.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Surface now available in Box Stores

I really do hope that Microsoft do well with this device. However, they need to review their price point. They may sell a few RT devices but the "Pro" versions (not yet available) are way over-priced.

Much has been said about fake reviews on the box store sites - this may well be the case, however, the proof is going to be in the sales of the device. Windows 8, RT included, is okay. I personally do not think that it is an improvement on Windows 7, except on a tablet, and I do  not like the interface on a computer.