Delayed Auto-Start Services

Time for another Vista tech tip!Set the way back machine to when you last installed XP.  (For some of you, that may not have been too long ago! :))  So, XP starts all nice and fast, and over time, the boot slowly takes longer.  And it takes longer to log in.  Why is this so?Perhaps it's obvious, but as we add more and more software to our machines, much of it wants to be running when the computer starts.  Many of these applications are running as services, and that in turn slows dow... [More]

Vista Gaming Framerates

This week I took my XP-based gaming rig and decided to install Vista on it.  Even though I'm running Vista on my other machines, I decided not to touch this machine because it was mainly used for gaming, and early reports were that the framerates in Vista were pretty bad compared to equivalent XP machines.I decided to dual boot so I could test this myself.  Up first: Half Life 2/CS:S.  I ran the default benchmark -- I set the resolution on 1680x1050, no anti-aliasing, all other options on hig... [More]

Amazon Slipping...

Is it just me, or is Amazon becoming more and more like eBay?  (Or maybe it's eBay becoming more and more like Amazon.)  In any event, Amazon -- from an end-user point of view -- is slipping a bit in my book.  First, while just browsing around for electronics and similar accessories, I was surprised by some of the very high prices.  I thought that was the big reason online stores couldn't be beat, but if I can get many items cheaper in a brick and mortar store, the incentive is purely co... [More]

Win an XBOX 360!

Want a chance to win an XBOX 360?  Be sure to come to the Piedmont Triad .NET User Group meeting on 9/27 in Greensboro, NC.  More details on the PTNUG web site.So why the give away?  Well, about 6 months ago, I promised the group that if we could hold 6 consecutive meetings over the coming months, we'd give away a nice prize.  It's about that time, and the group has done it amazingly well.  It's time to give away a nice prize!  Join us on 9/27!

WorldMaps and Virtual Earth

Some might think this is a long overdue piece of functionality, but at long last, I've got a working sample of integrating WorldMaps and Virtual Earth.  I demonstrated how this works in a recent MSDN Roadshow Chad and I completed recently in Charlotte.  To check out how this works, you can see my modified stats page here:http://www.structuretoobig.com/worldmapv2.aspx?userid=fecb0aff-083e-4f42-9b08-9a01e3cb714aIf you're using WorldMaps, just point to worldmapv2.aspx instead of worldmap.aspx for the... [More]

Want to go to the Halo 3 Launch?

Want to go to the Halo 3 Launch event on 9/24 in Charlotte, NC?  I've got a number of passes left -- so drop me an e-mail (bhitney @ [you should know what company :)].com -- or leave a comment here (e-mail address not shown in comments).  I'll send you an invite while they are available.  (If they're no longer available -- sorry!)The event runs from 6pm and 10pm at the Microsoft office, and there will be food, drinks, prizes, and some Halo 3 tournaments!  Since we'll be playing... [More]

The Customer Experience

At Mix earlier this year, Lou Carbone gives a great presentation on the emotional side of the customer experience.  It's a great talk -- and you can watch it here.  Speaking of the emotion -- I love what we do around Mix ... the whole experience is fantastic, even in a being able to download these sessions.The other day I was in Charlotte and I stopped in at the company store to pick up copy of One Care.  I'm a fan of the product because it's easy to use.  This weekend, my folks are... [More]

Game Dev Conference

There's a cool game conference coming to Altanta!  Via Doug's blog:SIEGE - Southern Interactive Entertainment and Game Expo (www.siegecon.net) - will be held October 5-7 in Atlanta, GA at the Crowne Plaza Perimiter. Meet the leading video game professionals from across the South!  Key speakers include: Johnny Wilson - Manifesto Games Ian Bogost - Persuasive Games Sam Lewis - Cartoon Network Marcus Matthews - Bule Heat Celia Pearce - Georgia Tech Thanks to the Georgia Game Developers Association (w... [More]

Roadshows and ReMIX!

Looks like a tropical storm is heading into Charleston to greet us for the Brian and Chad Roadshow starting on Monday.  We move base camp up to Charlotte on Tuesday, and last I saw, we have open seats so it's not too late to register.  Here's how: REGISTER!   Location Date & Time Registration Benefit Focus – Charleston, SC100 Benefitfocus, Charleston, South Carolina September 10, 2007 8:30 AM–12:00 PM Register Event ID: 1032350394 Microsoft Corporation – Charlotte, NC8055... [More]

Vista Laptop? Reclaim Some Space

I've spent a lot of time talking about Vista internals at various groups ... and, I admit it, I haven't blogged too much about some of the tips I give in this talk.  So, I'd like to give a tip about Volume Shadow Copy.Volume Shadow Copy originally appeared, I believe, in Windows XP.  It was used as a way to get reliable backup copies of files, since backup applications couldn't necessarily get reliable snapshots of files that were in use.  This functionality was exposed in a new way in Window... [More]

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