How many people buy software from sites like this?

Over the weekend I was helping a student find the best price for some software, taking advantage of any educational discounts on offer. We tried Google and soon came up with a company offering excellent prices.

Unfortunately all the software on offer is pirated. If you make a purchase, you are doubly caught:

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Hyper-V VMs can fail to start if the host is copying a large file

I have a couple of Microsoft Hyper-V servers which I’ve been working with, one of which has 20GB RAM. It had two virtual machine guests, one with 12GB allocated and another with 2GB allocated. I created a third VM with 2GB and started it up. It worked initially, but on rebooting the VM I got

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Wrestling with Windows Server Core

Windows Server Core is a stripped-down build of Windows Server 2008 which lacks most of the GUI. It’s a great idea: more lightweight, less to go wrong, and as the Unix folk have always said, who needs a GUI on a server anyway?

That said, the Windows culture has always assumed the presence of the

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Hands on with Intel Moblin

When I saw that trying out Intel’s Moblin Linux 2.1 was as easy as downloading an image and writing it to a USB pen drive, I could not resist giving it a try.

Moblin (it rhymes with Goblin) is aimed at netbooks running Intel’s Atom processor, though it also runs on other Intel processors

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Chrome OS: will Google keep its vision?

I spent some time with Chrome OS over the weekend and yesterday, first doing my own build of the open source Chromium OS, and then running it and writing a review.

The build process was interesting: you actually compile Chromium OS from a chroot virtual environment. My first efforts were unsuccessful, for two reasons. First,

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COM automation in Silverlight 4 is not an “edge case”

I wrote a piece for The Register about the arrival of Windows-specific features in Silverlight, which attracted some comments both on the Reg and also on Slashdot. Plenty of people said it was just what they expected from Microsoft, some of them misunderstanding the point that this only applies to out-of-browser applications that are trusted:

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Google Chrome OS – astonishing

I’m watching Google’s press briefing on the forthcoming Chrome OS. It is amazing. What Google is developing is a computer that answers several of the problems that have troubled users since the advent of the personal computer.

Exaggeration? Here’s a quick summary of what Chrome OS is. It’s a device that you will purchase

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PDC day two: Silverlight 4 and a free laptop

There were two big themes at PDC in Los Angeles today. One was the Silverlight 4 beta, the subject of the most impressive section at the keynote. The other was the announcement of free laptops for every attendee – aside from press and government. It is remarkable how a generous gift can change the atmosphere.

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Silverlight 4 ticks all the boxes, questions remain

Microsoft has announced Silverlight 4 here at PDC in Los Angeles. The gist of it I was expecting – device support, an option for fuller system access out of the browser – but the extent of the new features is remarkable. Here’s a few highlights:

Improved Just-in-time compilation gives 30% faster start-up, up to 100%

…continue reading Silverlight 4 ticks all the boxes, questions remain

PDC day one: Windows in the cloud

Today was cloud day at PDC. Microsoft announced that Windows Azure will become a production platform on January 1st, with billing starting from February 1st. It also announced the beta of Windows Server AppFabric role, for on-premise apps that can either stay on-premise or be deployed to Azure later; and some new developments like the

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