Friday, May 29, 2009

Windows 7 low memory footprint + Windows Live Writer bug

Here is my memory usage now:


With Vista I was at 50% without doing anything.

And here is something I’ve noticed in the newly installed Windows Live Writer:


I do have an idea about why it happens…

Google Analytics doesn't like Montana?

I'm using Google Analytics to monitor the "vast traffic" I'm getting to this blog. True, I'm not getting too much traffic, but I do get visitors from all sorts of places in the world.

The odd thing I've noticed, was that according to GA since the first day of the blog around November 2007, until today I had visits from every state in the US, except for Montana. Here are the cold facts:
It doesn’t make much sense to me. Is GA filtering out traffic from Montana, or is this just a coincidence that no one from Montana visited this blog?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Java slows down tab opening in IE8

Working on IE8 in Windows 7 RC, I've suddenly noticed today that when opening new tabs, it took IE8 a few seconds to display the tab. Needless to day, I was annoyed. I remembered I installed Java today for another program, so I've quickly disabled Java in IE8 Tools -> Internet Options -> Programs -> Manage Add-ons, and the problem went away. So if you notice the same issue, try doing the same!

Playing MKV or DivX using FFDShow in Windows 7

One of the main issues that I had with Windows 7, was playing MKV files. I've installed Haali Media Splitter and FFDshow. I've started playing an MKV file and noticed that they playback was choppy a bit. After further investigation I've noticed that the FFDShow video decoder doesn't appear in the tray, so I understood that FFDshow isn't used. I've searched for a solution for a couple of days. I've quickly learned that the problem is that Windows 7 comes with it's own codec for MKV, and even for DivX, and it doesn't let FFDShow take over, but it took me another day to get to the following solution.

A word of warning: The solution is involves renaming files in the Windows\System32 folder. It isn't an ideal solution, and can cause certain things not to work right. I assume that TV recordings using Media Center won't work, and DVD playback also wouldn't work. It may break other things as well, so I take no responsibility for this solution.

The main solution is posted here. However, besides renaming the following files:

The ones above are needed to enable DivX to be decoded with FFDShow. I had to rename one more file to get FFDShow to play MKV files, and that's: msmpeg2vdec.dll

That's it, now MKVs play well, with FFDShow. Hope this post saves people some time finding the solution.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Lost Rewatch - Season 1 - Pilot Parts 1 and 2

Now that we are waiting for the last season of Lost, I've decided to re watch the 5 seasons, and not just that, but to do watch it with my wife, who has never seen any episodes. I hope she doesn't give up anytime soon...
So, what do I say about the Pilot? It's nothing like the rest of the series. My wife saw it as some kind of a horror story (you know, pilots being snatched from a window, and their bloody body thrown on a tree). It's less character, and more "show", so it makes the characters seem a little bit one-dimensional. It makes sense, as the purpose of the Pilot is to sell the show. The second part was better, and my wife was completely surprised when it was revealed that Kate was the prisoner. She also wondered why Michael knew saw little about his son, though this was revealed later. Basically, she enjoyed the 2nd part better. Hope it only improves over time.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Windows 7 RC

I have been busy at work lately, so had no time to write (or read my RSS feeds, or do other things I like to do), but I did hava a chance to return to Windows 7, and this time I had a separate hard disk, so I avoided the issues I had with the Beta. Overall, I'm very pleased with Windows 7. I did however have a few issues, and still have some other issues, and here they are:

Resolved issues
  • Anti virus: At first I installed AVG, but I felt it gave me no real security, so last night I installed Trend Micro. However, it seemed stuck, even after restart, and only showed as "Loading". Today I tried to uninstall it, and it didn't succeed. I had to use a restore point, to remove it. I now have Kaspersky 8 beta for Windows 7.

  • Creative Webcam: I have an older version. Windows didn't install a driver for it, and according to the Action Center (which is great BTW), Creative don't have a driver for it, but you can try installing the old driver in Compatibility Mode. I tried it last night, and it worked.

  • Playing MKVs: Windows 7 has it's own codec for MKV (H264). It's pretty bad. I had to rename a few DLLs to be able to disable the Windows codec, and use ffdshow instead (more about this, perhaps later).

Unresolved issues

  • Rear Microphone input: For some reason, the rear microphone input is not recognized, so my microphone is not recognized. I tried to check for an updated driver for Windows 7 for my Intel motherboard, but they don't have Windows 7 drivers yet.

I think this is it for now...