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Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: February 17, 2014, 04:48:31 AM »

Total Tracks: 231,253
Total Albums: 23,181
Total Artists: 17,888

It's pretty easy to install something like Classic Shell (or one of the free equivalents) on Win 8 and in my experience (rolling out Win 8 Pro company-wide to almost 60 users) there have been almost zero complaints about Win 8 when Classic Shell is enabled. If you try to give somebody Win 8 without a start button, though, roughly 100% of people say "What the f*ck is this crap? I can't use this!"

Maybe a slight exaggeration, but not by much.

Classic shell helped me a lot.  I even have a touchscreen laptop and I can't tolerate the Metro interface.  The Metro interface is crap unless you don't have a keyboard at all (tablet).  MS has really messed up on Windows in their quest to catch up with the iPad.  In all fairness though, it's tough to do real work on an iPad in my opinion.

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: February 08, 2014, 07:35:06 AM »

Total Tracks: 230,124
Total Albums: 23,056
Total Artists: 17,812

Now playing: Teresa Rampazzi - With The Light Pen from Musica Endoscopica

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: January 24, 2014, 04:56:51 AM »

Total Tracks: 226,584
Total Albums: 22,655
Total Artists: 17,560

Station listenership continues to improve with several thousand ambient selections on the playlist.  Commercial-free as I pay all the licensing fees.  Email me if you want to add some music to the playlist.

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: January 02, 2014, 04:47:39 AM »

Total Tracks: 221,259
Total Albums: 22,159
Total Artists: 17,194

I had to expand/modify the music server due to running out of storage space on four 2 TB external USB hard drives.  I got an 8 hard drive USB 3.0 enclosure and installed 4 hard drives with 10 TB of storage, leaving 4 hard drive spaces unused for future expansion.  The "upgrade" is a true upgrade in that I got to unplug all those dang external hard drives, each with their own power brick and USB cord.  Now there is one power cord for the enclosure and one USB 3.0 cable.

Computers, Internet and Technology / Re: R.I.P. XP
« on: December 28, 2013, 12:57:32 PM »
I think you might have read something about the limit to the number of multitasking Metro (full-screen touch-interface) apps, not Windows programs. MS would be insane to limit the number of Windows programs you can run at once.

In fact, the number of Metro apps you can run at once increased with Win 8.1 from Win 8.0.

God.  Win 8 is awful and so unintuitive.  I installed a Start button replacement to free myself from the "Metro" apps at boot.

And although you can run as many non-Metro apps as you want, the task switching is different.  Also the number or format in which you can display multiple running apps side-by-side is different; once again, so unintuitive that I cannot remember the details right now.

It's a mess.  I've been with Windows since 3.1 and this breaks all the traditions.

I can see where the Metro apps might be nice with a tablet but even with a touchscreen laptop like the one I have, it's buggy and not as functional as regular Windows applications.

This may be the first bit in my conversion to the Mac.


Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: December 16, 2013, 05:19:27 AM »

Total Tracks: 214,899
Total Albums: 21,473
Total Artists: 16,717


Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: December 08, 2013, 09:00:46 AM »

Total Tracks: 210,573
Total Albums: 21,027
Total Artists: 16,370

I've been busy.

NP: 2.0: Mathis Grassow - Kenosis

Computers, Internet and Technology / Re: R.I.P. XP
« on: December 03, 2013, 04:57:19 AM »
I have Windows 8 on a notebook and I find it unintuitive and confusing after having used every other version of Windows including 3.1.  Also the touch interface is NOT needed on a desktop computer and there should be a way to dispense with it; I believe there is in 8.1.

It is very quick to boot though. -- you should install Classic Shell. It helps you avoid most of the unpleasant aspects of Win 8 and makes it function more like Win 7 as far as user interface. I install this on all the new Windows 8 machines at work, and everyone who users it asks me to help them set up the same thing if they get a Win 8 machine at home.

It's free, and I endorse it. Just stay away from the Start screen and the Metro apps completely, if you don't like them.

Thanks.  I think Win 8.1 remains unintuitive despite the classic shell but I'll give it a try.  Also I typically multitask up to 10 apps.  I believe that Win 8.1 puts a limit on the number of multitasking apps; if that is true, I'll likely never switch to it.

Hopefully I am wrong.

Computers, Internet and Technology / Re: R.I.P. XP
« on: December 01, 2013, 05:02:11 PM »
Win7 is actually a slightly slower operating system than XP. The big increase in speed you're seeing is because of the hot rod hardware you're using now. XP machines might start to have more and more problems as Microsoft stops updating them with security patches, and newer software insists on a more recent OS in order to install.

Enjoy your new machine. Like you, I'm just in the process of getting ready to switch my primary computer from an old, reliable machine to an entirely new one.

Windows 7 have superior memory management.  This reason alone is worth upgrading.

It is true the file copy is slow on windows 7 but there is programs like extremecopy etc...that will  make file coppying fullspeed.

7zip is faster then winrar..

Windows 8 is faster on very old machines (and new) compared to windows xp.
So there is now absolutely no reason be stuck with XP anymore.

Windows 8 work better for DAW computers...Lower DPC latency etc

XP will soon stop offering free security updates... they will only be available for people who pay for 1 year subscription...

I have Windows 8 on a notebook and I find it unintuitive and confusing after having used every other version of Windows including 3.1.  Also the touch interface is NOT needed on a desktop computer and there should be a way to dispense with it; I believe there is in 8.1.

It is very quick to boot though.

Computers, Internet and Technology / Re: R.I.P. XP
« on: December 01, 2013, 12:54:55 PM »
Everyone must do backups!

Also I should explain my above comment about Win7 being slower than XP. That's not a criticism of the OS - I actually think Win7 is a much better, more stable and modern operating system than XP. It's just that newer operating systems are inevitably larger and more complex. Installing your OS on an SSD drive probably makes the biggest difference of all, though your machine is faster in several respects (processor, RAM, video card) than anything that was available in 2008.

Yes, I agree with all of your assessments on Win 7 and the new 'puter.

For the first time since I started personal computing in 1992, I can now buy and use as much RAM as I need due to the 64-bit OS.  I think that this helps with the multitasking improvement that I mentioned also.

As far as speeding things up the most, the SSD is likely the culprit, particularly with WinRAR. 

I didn't expect to use or appreciate USB 3.0 as I have.  It seems quite fast with transfers at 80-100 Mbps.

If you haven't upgraded in a few years, now is the time.  Get a low end i7 proc, plenty of RAM, a SSD, USB 3.0 and you're in for a treat.

Computers, Internet and Technology / Re: R.I.P. XP
« on: December 01, 2013, 10:37:39 AM »
You've inspired me to do the overnight backup this evening.

If I inspired just ONE backup, the effort to write the message was worth it.  L :) L

Computers, Internet and Technology / R.I.P. XP
« on: December 01, 2013, 06:16:00 AM »
My 2008 full-tower XP computer with an AMD quad-core processor just gave up the ghost.  I suspect that the second and only-remaining video card died.  I was able to remove the hard drive and salvage all my data so at least I'm not mourning the loss of data AND the old reliable computer.  Ironically I was in the middle of backing up some .flac files that I had ripped when the machine gave up the ghost via the infamous Blue Screen of Death.  Is there a better or more honorable way to die for an XP machine?

Fortunately I was in a position to have purchased a customized machine a few months ago to have in position to succeed the dead one:

i7 Sandy Bridge-E 3930 processor with 6 cores
Vertex 256 GB SSD
6 TB of hard disk storage
EVGA GeForce GTX 660 video card with 3 GB RAM
16 GB system RAM
Soundproofed full-tower case
Blu-ray Burner/Reader
Windows 7 64-bit
USB 3.0

I decided to go with the motherboard's sound via S/PDIF to an external DAC and likewise with the Ethernet connection.

While I have enjoyed the relative reliability and speed of XP for now over 10 years over multiple computers, the difference between these machines in terms of functionality and speed is pretty marked:

1.  Multiple downloads simultaneously do not noticeably slow the machine
2.  Unraring 30 GB of files now takes less time than unraring 10 GB of files on the old machine
3.  In fact, nothing I have done seems to slow the machine and I'm running all of Windows 7 "window dressing" and running a number of apps in the background at all times including the inevitable antivirus solution
4.  The one problem I ran into is that the eSATA connector does not seem to work but the one device I use for that connection is an external hard drive dock and it has a USB 3.0 connector also.  With the USB 3.0 connector, I'm getting speeds pretty comparable to what I was seeing with eSATA.
5.  My old large-format photo-quality printer would just not work with the 64-bit driver; fortunately I had an updated one in the wings also.  My old flatbed scanner's 64-bit driver seems identical to the 32-bit one.

Re-installing all my necessary software is somewhat of a drag and time-consuming but I have had a chance to reconsider all of it and find better alternatives in some cases.

So R.I.P. XP.  You served me well.


Happy Holidays.


np: Rigel Orionis - Centrifugal (wow!!!) on

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: November 25, 2013, 03:57:24 AM »

Total Tracks: 204,773
Total Albums: 20,368
Total Artists: 15,924

now playing: BBC World Update on KUT

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: November 17, 2013, 01:19:40 PM »

Total Tracks: 203,068
Total Albums: 20,192
Total Artists: 15,807

np: Fink - Fear Is Like Fire

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: November 12, 2013, 04:59:09 AM »

Total Tracks: 201,879
Total Albums: 20,045
Total Artists: 15,712

now playing: Pete Namlook - Take The Sky

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: November 02, 2013, 01:50:30 PM »

Total Tracks: 200,482
Total Albums: 19,846
Total Artists: 15,594

We got a foot of rain this week.  Beautiful and cool right now.  Great Saturday.

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: October 26, 2013, 10:15:36 AM »

Total Tracks: 199,054
Total Albums: 19,686
Total Artists: 15,522

Beautiful weather here in Austin.  Drought has actually eased a bit.

now playing: Patrick Cowley - Primordial Landscape

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: October 06, 2013, 08:46:35 AM »

Total Tracks: 197,493
Total Albums: 19,519
Total Artists: 15,453

The hardware/players that I use for my music server work very well.  I have instant access to all my music in several rooms of the house; I can sync playback throughout the house if desired.  Unfortunately Logitech has dropped the Squeezebox line of players.

The good news is that the Squeezebox community is made of hardware and software developers who now are making open source hardware for the now open source server software.  This product will compete with Sonos but will offer two big advantages: lower cost and the playback of hi-res files.  Additionally Sonos uses internal memory for its database; that usually fills up at approximately 65,000 files - there are no plans for that to increase that anyone can discern.  The disadvantage will be that the new players may not look as good and they will be initially headless without a display, using iOS/Android/computer apps to control the players.  They may also require an external DAC which could be an advantage.  For those of you contemplating trying out a home music server, this might be an inexpensive route to go.

I'll keep you posted.

Now playing: 2.0: Chad Hoefler - Orchard Of Stone

Now Playing / Re: FILE://Access/Rip/Play
« on: September 30, 2013, 03:25:27 AM »

Total Tracks: 196,491
Total Albums: 19,415
Total Artists: 15,396

The process of bagging my CDs (going from jewel boxes to poly bags) is nearly complete after years of work.  I have probably 400 more to go.

Now Playing on 2.0 : Bengalfuel - Mr. Crow

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