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Linux Developer On Trial For Murdering His Wife

CMP Information Week
InformationWeek Daily - Thursday, Nov 29, 2007


Editor's Note

Top 5 Things Microsoft Must Fix In Windows Vista In 2008

With Vista's first service pack due for wide release early next year, Microsoft is intent on addressing the many things which need to be fixed in its still-young operating system. The question is, are they going to fix the right things? I think not, since the problems this time around aren't bugs so much as performance.

1) Good Performance From SP1.

There's currently a debate raging about just how well the upcoming Vista Service Pack 1 works. You and I can't know for sure, since SP1 is currently in the hands of a select group of testers.

However, a release candidate of SP1 is supposed to hit the Web very soon, at which time we'll be able to put it through its paces. Early word is that it focuses far less on raw performance than on fixing all the little nits that a first service pack for a new Microsoft operating system has to address.

That's the wrong approach. Vista is actually fairly bug free. Where it falls down is in the performance category. Things in general are too slow and hog more processing power than they should. If you have a performance meter as one of your sidebar gadgets, you see how both CPU cores -- my main machine is a dual-core Pentium D 940 box -- often rise to 90% when a new app is launched.

2) Faster Boot-Up.

The more I use Vista, the more I enjoy its look and feel. I'm sorry; maybe I'm shallow. I know many people have criticized Vista's glitzy Aero interface, which relies on good looking eye candy that sucks up a lot of graphics processing horsepower. Okay, so in computer terms Vista is as wasteful as a GMC Yukon. Get over it.

More to the point, Aero's computing requirements have nothing to do with Vista's lengthy boot process. It's the fact that the OS is starting so many darn services. Can't it launch the essentials, and do the rest in the background after the welcome screen has appeared? Oh yeah, it already does. Which just reinforces the idea that there's too much going on here, and it's too slow. Paging Linux.

Since Vista doesn't crash anywhere near as often as earlier Windows incarnations, you may be wondering why I don't just boot up on New Year's Day and leave my PC on. Mostly, it's about the heat and fan noise (and secondarily about electricity costs). Plus, I like to pretend that I have some time at home where I'm not thinking about or using my computer. So, when there's just one last thing I absolutely have to check after I've logged off for the fifth time for the night, I'd love to be able to boot up in 30 seconds. That's not asking for too much, is it?

Want to know the other three top things that Microsoft must fix in Windows Vista in 2008? Read the rest of my blog post.

Alex Wolfe
awolfe@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com

Quote of The Day

"Well, I had a wonderful evening. It just wasn't tonight." -- Groucho Marx

Top Stories

Linux Developer On Trial For Murdering His Wife
Hans Reiser, the owner of Namesys and the developer of ReiserFS, is on trial for murder charges related to his wife's disappearance last year.

Related Stories:

Police Arrest Expert Linux Developer, Search For Missing Wife

Murder Suspect's Google Searches Spotlighted In Trial

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Judge Says SCO, Novell Trial Can Proceed

The trial was originally scheduled to begin in September in Utah federal court -- but was postponed pending the outcome of SCO's bankruptcy petition.

Google Purges Malware Sites Targeting Searchers

Sunbelt Software said many search results on Google led to malicious Web pages that expose visitors to exploits that can compromise vulnerable systems.

IBM Releases Tools To Boost Data Warehouse Performance

IBM also has partnered with Appfluent Technology to distribute the latter company's monitoring and workload analysis software.

Overstock.com Divulges Secret to Its Cyber Monday Success

CEO Patrick Byrne credits the success of his new Web site to a move away from offshore outsourcing and the investment in "expensive" Java developers.

Nearly 450 Phones Ready For Packet8 MobileTalk International Calling Service

VoIP provider 8x8 launched the low-cost international long-distance mobile calling service less than two weeks ago.

Exploding Cell Phone Kills South Korean Man

Police want to know why a 33-year-old quarry worker was found with broken bones, heart damage, and a melted cell phone in his left chest pocket.

California Looks At Google Or Microsoft As Its Hosted Software Supplier

A move to hosted e-mail and other services would impact a quarter of a million state workers and create a multimillion dollar revenue windfall for either company.

Xerox And N.C. State Collaborate On Business Tech Curriculum

The organizations are among the universities and tech vendors teaming up to provide students knowledge of complex technology, business, and organizational issues.

TiVo Partners To Enter PC TV Tuner Market

Nero will develop software for a PC-based DVR that can be connected to a digital TV

France's Orange Debuts iPhone For A Low Standalone Price

Just before the countrywide release, the telecom is offering the coveted mobile phone in a standalone version without a service plan for $519 less than T-Mobile.

Verizon Begins Selling XV6800 Smartphone

The business-oriented phone operates on the third-generation EVDO network, capable of delivering download data rates of up to 2.4 Mbps.

Intel Releases Apple Leopard Toolset Upgrade

The new compilers contain auto-parallelizing capabilities and new application programming interfaces for building multithreaded applications.

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In This Issue


The latest research, polls, and tools

Virtualization At The Desktop?
Examine how more than 250 companies plan to adopt server virtualization technology in this recent InformationWeek Research report, Server Virtualization.

The BI Explosion
Examine the business intelligence strategies of 500 companies, including deployment drivers and challenges, spending plans, and vendor selection, in this recent InformationWeek Research report.

Latest InformationWeek Blog Posts

Super 3G In The Hands Of 24 Million People Predicted By 2012
A new report by Juniper Research forecasts that by 2012, nearly 24 million subscribers worldwide will be using services based on a cellular technology called Long Term Evolution, or LTE, which is often referred to as "super 3G." That means in the next couple of years wireless carriers and mobile device makers will have to step up their game, especially in the United States.

Wind-Powered Google Data Centers? One Already Exists
Google's new initiative to develop renewable energy sources conjures up images of data centers powered by water, wind, and the sun. No need to stretch your imagination; Google's already got them.

The So-Called 'Incompleteness' Theory Of Open Source
Sourceforge.net, the premier repository for open-source software, has more than 160,000 projects registered. Many of them will never reach the 1.0 revision marker. But is that really a bad thing?

South Korean Man Killed By Exploding Mobile Phone
Sure, we've all heard about mobile phones that explode, but this time the exploding phone actually killed someone. Are mobile phones becoming less safe?

Google Talks Up Enhanced Mobile Google Maps And Location Services
As if we needed another sign that location will be the hot topic for 2008, Google today announced a significant upgrade to its Google Maps for mobile application called My Location. In order to get a better handle on the upgrade, I sat down with Steve Lee, product manager, Google Maps for mobile, to discuss Google's plans for location applications.

Google Adds Locator Feature To Mobile Maps Application
Google made a new beta version of its Mobile Maps application available to certain smartphones today. The biggest improvement of the application comes with its My Location feature, which uses cell tower information--and not on-board GPS--to determine user location. Watch our demo here.

Lenders Plan Database To Help With Foreclosure Mess, But Will Things Really Change?
Mortgage lenders on Tuesday committed to a doozy of an IT project: they'll build a database on every foreclosed property in the United States to help cities untangle the foreclosure mess. Good. The guilty party is finally starting to show some responsibility for the subprime mortgage crisis.

Motorola Loses The Number Two Spot To Samsung, Has Clearly Lost Its Mojo
More bad news for Motorola. Plagued by a tough year all around, Motorola slipped from the world's second-largest supplier of mobile phones to the third, according to third quarter figures released yesterday. In comparison, Nokia increased its lead and sold nearly three times as many devices as Motorola. Can Moto turn it around and get its mojo back?

Why Microsoft Rattles The Patent Saber
It must be maddening to believe you command developer loyalties and lead legions worldwide, then watch developers flock to the Linux kernel. Maddening, that is, if you're Microsoft. Why does Microsoft say its patents cover Linux, while at the same time reaching out to other open source code projects? It's the Linux kernel development process.

Zune Vs. iPod: Which Music Player Do You Want For Xmas?
There's lots of talk about Microsoft's slimmed-down, second-generation Zune. I'm supposed to get my review unit soon, and I'm anxious to take a look. I'm sure it's much improved over the 1.0 design, which had all the style of a 1960 Dodge Polara. However, if you ask people which music player they want for the holidays, and you frame the question the way I did in the headline, the answer is pretty obvious.

University To Make Students Carry GPS Mobile Phones
For those of you who thought I was jumping the gun with location and GPS, check this out: Montclair State University will require its students to buy and carry a special cell phone equipped with GPS. Is this a sign of things to come?

White Paper

Open Source Compliance and Governance in the Enterprise -- by Devzuz
Success in incorporating Open Source Software (OSS) within the enterprise software development model can be achieved through standardized processes. This paper provides guidelines for implementing processes for maximizing OSS benefits through the careful management and minimization of the potential risks to the organization through governance.

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