Blog about my Vista Trials and Tribulations
June 11, 2007
I've been playing with the latest version of Ubuntu Linux. It is very easy to setup as a dual boot with Vista. On my laptop I have two partitions. One has Vista. The other had a beta version of Server 2008. It was setup as a dual boot. There's a new Server 2008 beta out which I'm going to install on a different computer so I decided to replace it with Linux. I edited the Vista boot menu with VistaBootPro to remove Server 2008 then I deleted that partition. I booted from the Ubuntu CD and installed it in the unallocated space left from the deleted partition. The install went very smoothly. After the install it took about an hour to figure out how to get the wireless working in Linux. Ubuntu setup a dual boot with grub that worked great. I did go into the grub setup and change Vista to be the default but other than that everything worked out of the box. If you are at all interested in an alternative to Windows I recommend Ubuntu Linux.
May 3, 2007
It's hard to believe VistaHelp.ca is almost one year old. I started working on the site May 24, 2006. I wanted a way to test Vista in every day use. I also wanted to test Office 2007 and Expression Web. All three were still in beta at the time. They've all been released now. I can't imagine using my computers without them. All three have increased my productivity. It took a while, especially with the beta versions. Vista is very different from previous versions of Windows. You have to forget most of what you learned to get the most out of Vista. Office 2007 is the same but a little easy to learn. Expression Web is supposedly the replacement for FrontPage. It is so different Microsoft may as well have said it is a new program. I like it better than FrontPage but as they are so different someone who is used to FrontPage will have a very hard time unless they have also used programs like DreamWeaver. All in all it's been a fun year. I hope next year is as fun.
April 12, 2007
An update to the router problems. There is a utility to test your router here. Internet Connectivity Evaluation Tool
March 26, 2007
Many people are experiencing problems with networking and Internet access. It turns out some routers and DHCP servers are not compatible with Vista. Here are the relevant Microsoft Knowledge Base articles: KB928233 and KB932134. There are some workarounds suggested in the articles.
March 17, 2007
MVP Summit (cont.)
I'm home from the Summit. It was a very tiring but very rewarding week at the MVP Summit. It was probably the most intellectually stimulating five days I've spent since some after hours Philosophy 101 discussions back in the '70s.
I can't believe how many smart people work at Microsoft. Dr. Gary Flake presented at the last session I was at. He is one of the smartest, most interesting speakers I've ever heard. He told us about Live Labs and some of their projects. Much of his work is covered by an NDA so I can't say much but check out Photosynth. This is just one aspect of his work. For me his presentation was a highlight but in four days I didn't attend one session that I was disappointed with.
The MVPs if anything may have been brighter and more curious about things in general than the Microsoft employees. I have never met so many people that were genuinely interested in learning new things, anything, just so long as it was new and interesting. It didn't matter where you were you could start a conversation with anybody on almost any topic, have a stimulating conversation, and learn something in the process. Elevators, buses, standing in food lines, there was never a dull conversation. It was information overload.
I was also very impressed with how open Microsoft was. All the MVPs have signed NDAs so they were willing to talk about (and receive criticism) on almost any topic. Product managers and product teams were available to talk not only about their products but about anything that may be connected to their products in any way. Almost every time you talked to a Microsoft team member someone was taking notes. They seemed very serious about listening to feedback and using it to guide future development. They also had the coolest laptops.
I'm exhausted mentally and physically. At the same time I feel invigorated and champing at the bit to study some of the new things I've learned about. Thank you Microsoft.
March 14, 2007
I'm blogging this from a public computer on the Microsoft campus. I'm at the MVP summit using Remote Web Workplace to remote into my desktop computer. I'm running Expression Web on the desktop to update my web site. All by remote. Technology is very cool when it works.
February 19, 2007
Start Search and More
I think the Start Search box is the best feature in Vista. The more I use Vista the better I like Start Search. Start typing the name of a program and it will pop up before you have typed more than four or five letters. For example start typing Reliability and Performance Monitor. On my system it's at the top of the list when I type R but I use the Reliability and Performance Monitor quite a bit. The Search is highly optimized to watch how you work and present search results based on your habits.
Speaking of Reliability and Performance Monitor if you haven't tried it I suggest you do. There are many hidden gems in this console to help you tune up or troubleshoot Vista. Check out the Reliability Monitor. It presents a graph of the last month with a day by day highlight of what happened on the system. On the main page of the Reliability and Performance Monitor you can monitor CPU usage by process, disk usage by process, network usage by process, and memory usage by process. Even though the Task Manager is much improved in Vista it doesn't hold a candle to the wealth of information in the Reliability and Performance Monitor.
February 9, 2007
The SBS 2003 update for Vista compatibility is available here. The updates allow Vista computers to join the domain with connectcomputer wizard, updates the client deployment tools for Vista, updates group policy for the Vista firewall, changes Remote Desktop settings for Vista, and more. You'll need SBS 2003 SP1 or SBS 2003 R2. If you're using Vista in a SBS domain you need this.
February 6, 2007
I've been unbelievably busy. The VistaHelp.ca forum has gone crazy since the release of Vista. Many thanks to all the participants who both ask and answer questions. I've also been getting up to ten emails a day asking questions. Please don't email your questions but ask them on the forum. That way everyone will get the benefit of the answers.
January 30, 2007
I'm stoked. Vista is publicly released. I have been featured on the Microsoft Vista Community page and the forum has seen a huge increase in traffic. Life is good.
January 19, 2007
UAC - love it, hate it, or somewhere in between?
This is probably the most controversial new feature in Windows Vista. Personally I think it's the best security measure Microsoft has ever implemented in a desktop OS. It allows you to run as an administrator while giving the same or better protection while running as a standard user. It allows the user much more control over what happens on their pc. With XP if you are logged on as an administrator and run a program you have no control over what it does. It could overwrite critical Windows files, delete or change system registry entries, install a service or driver, in other words anything it likes. With UAC all this will fail unless you OK it first. You have unprecedented control over what programs are allowed to do. This causes some older, poorly programmed applications to fail but that is the price of security. Every major new version of Windows has had some backwards compatibility problems. I have less problems with Vista at this stage than I did with XP. Here's some links about UAC for further reading if you're so inclined.
Windows Vista User Account Control Step by Step Guide
Jimmy Brush's guide to UAC
January 8, 2007
The more I use Vista the better I like it. The UI is very different from XP but once you start using it, it's much more powerful. It's kind of like how it felt going from Windows 98 or 2000 to XP. At first you just want the old way back. After a while you wouldn't go back to the old way.
Palm Treo 600 with Vista and Office 2007
I've had a lot of people ask about how I got my Treo 600 phone to sync with Outlook 2007 in Vista so I thought I'd write up the procedure. Hopefully Palm will have new Vista compatible software soon but in the meantime here's how I got it working on two computers so far. First you have to use Vista x86. I couldn't get it to work with Vista x64. If you've already tried to get it working then you have to clean up all the leftover stuff before continuing.
- Uninstall Palm Desktop
- Insert the CD that came with the Treo but don't let it autorun.
- Navigate to the correct language folder on the Treo CD and right click on setup.exe
- Set the compatibilty for XP SP2 and Run as administrator.
- Run setup.exe
- During the install the initial sync may fail. Just tell the installation to continue.
- If you want to sync with Outlook make sure you pick this option during the install
- Once it's finished close the Hotsync System Tray application.
- In Windows Explorer go to the Palmone folder in Program Files.
- Right click hotsync.exe and set it to run in administrator mode with XP SP2 compatibility.
- Do the the same for palm.exe.
- Start the Palm Desktop and change the Hotsync settings to manual start.
- Exit Palm Desktop and reboot.
You should now be able to sync the Treo 600 with Outlook 2007 or Palm Desktop. You will have to manually start the Hotsync application and deal with a uac prompt because it is set to run in administrator mode. The sync only works when Outlook is not running. You also have to sync twice. The first time you will get errors about the default folders for Outlook. Ignore the errors and press the sync button again. If it still doesn't work reboot and try it again. Good luck. Let me know if you find an easier procedure.
January 1, 2007
Happy New Year!
December 26, 2006
Best of the season to everyone.
I'm still liking my decision to switch exclusively to Vista. There are a few teething problems but nothing that's impossible to overcome. I initially installed Vista Ultimate 64 bit on the Acer notebook. It ran fine but I was having problems with drivers for peripherals like printers and my Treo phone. I switched to Vista Business x86. My next challenge was binary newsgroups. I have always used Outlook Express for text groups and Windows Mail works very much the same so text groups were taken care of. I used to use Forte Agent for binary groups. The version I have is very old so I decided to see what was available that was compatible with Vista. The short answer is nothing that works as well for me as Agent. The closest contender was Xananews. I'm using the newest version Agent 4.2 but it is definitely not 100% Vista compatible. It keeps it's data in a subfolder of the program folder which is a definite no no in Vista. You can get it to work but you have to move the data folder then always use Run as administrator for it to work. Forte says they are working on a Vista compatible version. I for one hope it comes out soon.
December 12, 2006
After switching exclusively to Vista for the last couple of days I have to say - Why did I wait so long? I had a hardware problem with the Acer 5100 notebook and I'm still waiting for the replacement. It should be here this afternoon. I've been using my old test computer for my main pc in the mean time. Even given it's dated hardware Vista runs great for day to day use. I did run into a bit of a problem with syncing the Treo 600. To sync it with Office 2007 involves a bit of a work around. I have to exit Outlook 2007. Run Outlook with the /resetfolders switch then immediately exit Outlook. Load the Palm Hotsync program and sync. This procedure seems to work every time. Until I found the exact sequence to use I was getting intermittent results. The problem is the PocketMirror software for syncing to Outlook, not the Palm software. The newest version of PocketMirror is supposed to be Vista and Office 2007 compatible but it doesn't work for me.
December 10, 2006
Lots to talk about. I've banished XP from my network. The only computer I have running XP is my old laptop which isn't joined to the domain. It isn't capable of running Vista. It still dual boots XP Pro SP2 and Fedora FC5 Linux. I've sold my main XP pc and replaced it with an Acer 5100 notebook running Vista Ultimate x64. My "test" pc (specs on the right) is running Vista Ultimate x86, Office 2007 Pro, and Expression Web, all the RTM versions. It's no longer a test pc but a production pc for web development. The last hurdle was getting my Treo 600 to sync with Outlook 2007. That seems to be working with a minor glitch. It won't sync while Outlook is running but that isn't a major problem. Vista is here!
November 23, 2006
I've added Google ads to the site. I hope they aren't too intrusive. I'm not trying to make a lot of money, just have the site pay for itself. Let me know if you find them bothersome, thanks.
November 17, 2006
I'm running the RTM version, build 6000 from MSDN. I just got it installed a few minutes ago. I'll play with it over the weekend and post my thoughts Monday.
November 14, 2006
Not much to talk about. Both Vista and Office 2007 have gone RTM. I'm in waiting mode until the Vista RTM is available on MSDN. Expression Web Design Beta 1 is not compatible with the RTM of Office 2007 so I have to decide if I want to stick with Office 2007 beta 2 for now or install Expression Web on a different computer.
November 1, 2006
I've been playing with Virtual PC 2007 Beta. It's very cool. I have Windows XP Home and Windows 98 SE in virtual machines. It is a great way to test things. I was setting up a customer with a variety of laptops to VPN into their server. I was able to do all the testing from this pc with virtual machines. I have previously used Virtual Server for this. VPC 2007 is much easier to configure. Virtual Server needs IIS running on the host which slows the host down. It's still Beta but so far seems very usable. If you're interested in virtual machines give it a try.
October 20, 2006
I've added some more beta software to the mix. I'm testing Virtual PC 2007 Beta. At first I thought it was slow. I created a small XP Home, 256 MB, 5 GB, virtual machine. It was very slow. Then I installed the virtual machine add-ons into the virtual machine. Now it works great. For a supported OS that uses the virtual machine add-ons it is faster than Virtual Server was on the same hardware.
October 18, 2006
Big changes to the Vista test. One of the hard drives in my server started to develop bad blocks. I decided to convert the Vista test machine to Small Business Server 2003 and use the old server to test Vista. The changeover was pretty straightforward. I cloned the old boot drive that was about to fail to the 40 GB drive from the Vista test machine, performed an in place upgrade sometimes called a repair install of SBS 2003 and the server was now running on the old Vista test machine. I installed the 120 GB data drive and that was that for the server. I used Acronis True Image Workstation 9.1 for the cloning process. It worked great. I installed a new 250 GB Samsung drive in the old server and installed Vista RC2 on a 30 GB partition. I installed Office 2007 beta 2 with the TR, and Expression Web Design Beta 1. That's where things sit now.
October 8, 2006
I've installed the latest Vista RC2, Build 5744. I haven't really had much time to play with it. It seems yet again a little quicker but that may just be wishful thinking.
October 4, 2006
I had an interesting day yesterday. Microsoft was presenting the Canadian TechNet i|o Tour '06 in Vancouver. I was one of the MVPs staffing the Ask the Expert booth. I was very nervous as I'm not really an expert in the subjects they were covering. It turned out to be fun. I leaned quite a bit listening to the other MVPs answering questions about things like: migrating five Exchange 5.5 sites running on NT 4.0 in separate domains to one Server 2003 domain and how to deploy non Microsoft applications to 1,500 computers, not exactly my specialty :-) I did get to answer a few questions about Vista so I didn't feel a total fool.
I'm thinking about updating this blog to use proper blog software. The forum is running great so it's time for a new challenge.
September 28, 2006
OK, I've had a few days to play with build 5728. It's been a busy few days. I installed the old 20 GB hard drive and then Server 2003 R2 onto it. I knew this would break the Vista boot loader. I wanted to see how easy it would be to recover from this blunder. Server 2003 installed fine and could boot no problem. It could even see the Vista drive. I could not boot into Vista. I tried booting from the Vista DVD. It recognized the Vista installation and wanted to fix it. I said yes go for it. It rebooted but all I got was Server 2003. I downloaded EasyBCD and installed it in Server 2003. I was able to repair the Vista boot sector. On reboot I could now get into Vista but not Server 2003. I downloaded EasyBCD and VistaBootPRO. They are very similar programs that give you GUI to edit Vista's boot configuration. It took a while of playing with them but I was able to add Server 2003 to the menu. I can now dual boot between Vista and Server 2003.
Next I decided to try out a new USB TV tuner from Adaptec the GameBridge TV This is a very cool device smaller than a credit card but a little thicker. It attaches to a USB port and gives you a TV tuner, video capture device. It has cable, s-video, and a/v cable inputs. It works great in XP. The install seemed to go fine for the drivers. The Intervideo Home Theater software that is needed to view TV or capture video wouldn't install until I tried XP compatibility mode. Once installed it wouldn't work. It actually locked up Vista solid needed a full power down to reset. That's the first application I've seen do that to Vista. I guess I'll have to find a different application that works with the GameBridge or wait until Intervideo updates their software.
All in all I like build 5728 so far. It's a little quicker than 5600 and doesn't seem to have introduced any bugs.
September 25, 2006
Microsoft released an interim RC1 version, 5728. It has some bug fixes over the original RC1 version, 5600. I have installed it by upgrading. I've also installed a second hard drive and Windows Server 2003 R2 on the second drive. I'll post more details when I get time.
September 21, 2006
I just upgraded the hard drive on my Vista test computer. I originally built the computer out of spare parts I had laying around. At the time all I had was a 20 GB hard drive. With Vista, Office 2007 and EWD I was using just over 15 GB. There wasn't enough room to install any more programs. I recently upgraded Acronis True Image to version 9.1. This would be a good test of it's compatibility with Vista. I booted from the Acronis boot CD and cloned the drive. I removed the old drive and put everything back together. The whole process took less than 1/2 an hour. On first boot I had an error. The error screen said to boot from the Windows Vista DVD, pick my language, then pick repair. I did this. Vista found the error and asked I wanted to fix it. I said what the heck, yes. On reboot Vista worked great. All in all a relatively painless process. I continue to be impressed with Vista's error recovery and easy to understand error messages. I think the error may have been caused by my not erasing the "new" hard drive before the cloning process. I usually overwrite track 0 on the target drive before cloning to it. I forgot this step.
September 19, 2006
RC1 is working great. I finally have Vista RC1, Office 2007 Beta 2 TR, and Expression Web Designer Beta 1 working together.
I spent the last couple of days fighting with installing Great Plains 9.0 on a SBS 2003 server. It was a pain in the butt. I was testing the install procedure for a customer. They don't have SQL server so I needed to install an instance of MSDE for use with Great Plains. SBS 2003 already has two instances of MSDE running. It took me two days to figure out how to get all three instances running and not getting in the way of each other. I'm just glad I decided to test it on my test server first.
September 12, 2006
I've been trying to get Office 2007 Beta 2 working. I knew there would be problems because of EWD Beta 1. They are not compatible. Microsoft says to wait until the Office 2007 Beta 2 Technical Refresh is available. I had heard of others running Vista RC1 and Office 2007 together so I had to try. It was a no go. I couldn't get Office 2007 to install as long as EWD was installed. I need Outlook on this computer so I decided to install Office 2003 as I have 10 licenses and have only used 5. This worked sort of. Installing Office 2003 broke EWD. I had to run the setup for EWD and pick the repair option to get it working again. So for now I've got Vista RC1, Expression Web Designer Beta 1, and Office 2003 SP2 co-operating with each other. The Office 2007 beta 2 Technical Refresh should be available in a couple of days. I imagine I'll have to go through the whole rigmarole again.
September 11, 2006
First let me express my sympathies to all Americans on the anniversary of this dark day. The world mourns with you.
I'm typing this using Vista RC1 and EWD Beta 1. The install went very smoothly. The computer is very slow right now though. Every time I've installed Vista it takes a while for the indexing service to index the hard drive. Once this is done things usually speed up. I usually leave it overnight and things are fine by the next morning.
September 6, 2006
Well I didn't get much of a chance test 5536. I went to Seattle for the Labour Day weekend. Now there's a new beta of Expression Web Designer and Vista RC1 has been released. I've downloaded EWD and am currently downloading Vista RC1. It'll probably take me a couple of days to get it all installed and running. Apparently Office 2007 Beta 2 is not compatible with either program so Microsoft is coming out with a Office 2007 Beta 2 Technical Refresh which will fix it. The joys of using betas!
August 30, 2006
The public download of Vista build 5536 has closed.
August 29, 2006
I'm posting this while running a new build. It's the Pre-RC1 test build 5536. The install was pretty straightforward. So far it looks good. I'll post a more detailed article with my impressions after I've used it for a few days. You can download it here. The download program will close after 100,000 downloads so if you want it get it now. You'll need an existing Beta 2 key to install it.
August 21, 2006
I've been playing with different forum packages to use with this web site. I've decided on phpBB2. It was pretty easy to get up and running. Now I have to figure out how to customize it. Try it out here.
August 15,2006I've spent some time playing with UAC and different accounts trying to get Vista to logon to SBS 2003 without needing a local administrator account. I don't think it can be done. The best I can come up with is to logon with a standard account. When the SBS logon script runs a UAC prompt pops up. At this point I specify a domain account that is in the local administrators group on this computer. This works with only having to enter passwords twice, once for the standard user, and once for the admin user. This keeps the aggravation to a minimum and allows you to use a standard user for everyday use. It is a major security problem for some workplaces. SBS 2003 needs to be fixed to be Vista aware and allow clients to run as standard users without needing local administrator credentials.
August 10, 2006
After a few days of using build 5472 I'm getting discouraged. I spend a lot of time on this machine using Expressions Web Designer. It was fairly stable with build 5384. EWD would crash randomly every couple of hours or so and I had occasional problems with FTP uploads. With 5472 EWD crashes much more often. I haven't lost any data but with the amount of crashes it's only a matter of time. FTP uploads are almost impossible. It doesn't seem to matter if I enable passive FTP or not 90% of FTP uploads from EWD fail. I finally enabled Front Page authoring support on the web server and now I can use Front Page authoring which has worked flawlessly so far. With RC1 due out sometime in the next couple of months I'm looking forward to seeing the end of 5472. I have been told that early RC1 builds have many of these problems fixed.
August 7, 2006
I've been playing with build 5472. It is definitely quicker than 5384 was. One really nice improvement is my external USB hard drive now works. It was recognized in 5384 but I couldn't access anything on it. I've reported a couple of bugs. I'm sure they're already known but I always like to report them anyway. The more people that report a bug the more priority it gets.
August 6, 2006
Finally had time to install build 5472. It took about three hours from start to finish. The Vista part of the process was actually pretty quick, about an hour. The rest of the time was installing Office 2007 Beta 2, Expressions Web Designer CTP1, restoring my data, and setting up Outlook 2007. On first impression 5472 seems a little faster, mouse cursors are different, and Windows mail seems much faster when dealing with newsgroups. I did crash Windows Mail when trying to download 50,000+ headers from a newsgroup. The headers downloaded OK. It crashed when I tried to leave the newsgroup. Ctrl-Alt-Del, and killing Windows Mail seems to have fixed it. I can go back to the same group with no problems now even with all the headers still there so it may have been a server problem. Active Directory domain access as a standard user seems to have taken a step backwards. With 5384 logon scripts popped up a UAC prompt for local admin access. With 5472 I get that prompt then another prompt for network credentials which should already be available as I logged on with a domain account. There really needs to be a way for domain users to run as local machine standard users. Other than the logon script hiccup it works. The problem is you have to know a local admin password to get past the UAC prompt which is a possible security problem.
August 2, 2006
I still haven't had time to install 5472. It's a pain the a## when work intrudes on real life. I've added some links and updated others. There are some very interesting discussions about Vista security and UAC on the Microsoft Vista newsgroups. If you haven't seen the newsgroups you are missing a vital resource for using Vista. Here's a link to a howto on using the newsgroups.
I've been very busy with work and haven't had much time to play with Vista or update this site. As I write this I'm downloading a new build (5472) from MSDN. I will have to backup all my data, format the drive, reinstall Vista, reinstall Office 2007 Beta 2, reinstall EWD CTP1, then restore the data. My next post will hopefully be after all that is done.
July 7, 2006
The cost of this experiment is starting to creep up. I was using an old NEC MultiSync monitor which had a max resolution of 1024x768. It just wasn't cutting it. I've used Vista at higher resolutions and it was a much better experience. I upgraded my main XP machine to a new 19" wide screen LCD (AOC 193FWk) and moved the monitor from that pc to the Vista pc. I'm now looking at Vista with 1280x1024 resolution. It's much better. The 193FWk is a really nice monitor. I'd love another one for the Vista pc :-)
July 4, 2006
Happy Independence Day to all Americans!
I've run into a small annoyance with Expressions Web Designer CTP1. When uploading a web site via FTP it sometimes crashes leaving the online site in a corrupted state. So far it's only an irritation as Vista offers the choice to restart a crashed program. Once it's restarted the upload works fine. Another Microsoft MVP Cheryl Wise thinks it has something to do with active or passive FTP. I suspect she's right but I can't find any way to change that in EWD. Cheryl has a great web site www.by-expression.com all about EWD. If nothing else the problem with EWD has pointed out how much better Vista handles crashed programs than previous versions of Windows.
July 1, 2006
Happy Canada Day!
It's been just over month of using Vista every day. I have another P4 3.0 GHz computer running XP that is my main machine, a server running SBS 2003, and also a laptop with XP and Linux but I try to use the Vista machine at least an hour or two every day. I'm starting to really appreciate Vista, Office 2007, and EWD. Even with an underpowered machine by current standards this is a good platform for office use and light web development. This started as a fairly good representative of a current workplace computer. Adding 512 MB of ram ($55 CDN) and a decent video card ($75 CDN) made it very usable with Vista. I will probably have to upgrade the hard drive soon as the 20 GB is starting to get full so add another $90 CDN. As I write this I'm listening to mp3's in Media Player 11 streaming from my XP computer, have Excel open looking up the above prices, Outlook connected to my Exchange server, and EWD editing this blog. Not bad for a marginal machine running all beta software!
June 27, 2006I upgraded the video card to a Radeon 9550 AGP with 256 MB of ram. It made a big difference. The Radeon 7000 didn't support Aero Glass. One nice surprise is the computer seems a bit faster overall with the new video card. I'm only guessing but I suspect that a decent card even with Aero Glass relieves the CPU of a lot of graphics overhead.
June 15, 2006
The computer is too slow with 512 MB. I upgraded to 1 GB. I have also installed Microsoft Office 2007 Beta 2 and Microsoft Expression Web Designer CTP1. Office 2007 is great. EWD looks like it will be a viable replacement for Front Page. It is more oriented to CSS and standard code than Front Page. This web site was created with EWD.
May 29, 2006
Finally got time to install Vista. I decided to go with the Ultimate Edition so I could try it all. The install was very straight forward if a bit long. I only had time to install and confirm it booted into Vista.
May 27, 2006
It's time to build a computer and install Beta 2. I purposely built a computer that is slightly underpowered for Vista. I want a realistic experience that many of my customers might have. With this in mind I scraped up some spare parts which consisted of an old AT case with a 350 watt ATX PSU of unknown origin. I would use the reset switch for the power as the AT power switch won't work with ATX. For a motherboard I used a Gigabyte 865PE a reasonable if a bit dated choice. I added a P4 1.6 GHz, 512 MB of Kingston PC3200 DDR, a maxtor 20 GB hard drive, a Radeon 7000 AGP card, and a LG dual layer DVDRW drive.
May 24, 2006
I downloaded Beta 2 from MSDN. I had previously played with Beta 1 and some in between CTP releases but hadn't done any serious testing. I decided I would give Beta 2 a workout.