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7126  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: CDs... :( on: October 18, 2005, 05:10:21 PM
Actually there are a lot of myths going around about oxidising CDs.

Most of the problems seem to have occured either in the early days of CD production when manufacturers were still learning (seems to be your case) or faulty manufacturing - there were various batches of discs produced in Germany and distributed through Europe that highlighted this problem a few years back.

The same is potentially true for DVDs.

However, most manufacturers seem to have fixed the problems quite a few years ago and esitmate CD archive life at 100 years plus.

Not a lot you can do though with CDs which have oxidised to the point of holes!!

I had a number of articles about this issue somewhere - I'll see if I can find them (just hope they aren't on a CD ...  tellme)
7127  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Polyphasic sleep? on: October 18, 2005, 11:41:08 AM
Shame there isn't a solution for when you want to stay awake less.

I didn't feel well yesterday evening and went to bed at 1030pm - unusally early for me. Trouble was i woke at 2am and that was that I was awake until about 5am, woke this morning feeling like death ...

Oh well ... maybe tonight will be a good night ...
7128  DonationCoder.com Software / Find And Run Robot / Re: show control panel on: October 18, 2005, 08:41:50 AM
ohmy It's always the simple idea's which are the best. You are a genius  Thmbsup

Nice of you to acknowledge that  Kiss
7129  DonationCoder.com Software / Screenshot Captor / Re: Bug / Issue — Paste of Images Changes their Aspect Ratio on: October 18, 2005, 07:03:33 AM
Actually - slightly mea culpa - but still a bug in there:

The above images were different sizes - still doesn't explain why the aspect ratio was destroyed though.

However, the following image is two full screens joined (identical orginal sizes). I doubled the canvas width and cut/psted using the SC edit menu.

The right hand image should be identical in size to the left hand image, but is in fact slightly smaller. Aspect ratio however is preserved.

Strange ...

Also I noticed moving larger objects (like whole screen shots) is really slugish (like move about wait 20 seconds, move another bit ...)
7130  DonationCoder.com Software / Screenshot Captor / Re: Bug / Issue — Paste of Images Changes their Aspect Ratio on: October 18, 2005, 06:43:24 AM
Yes I get the same thing ...

Here is an example shot ...
7131  DonationCoder.com Software / Find And Run Robot / Re: show control panel on: October 18, 2005, 06:32:48 AM
Don't know if it will work (haven't tired it yet) but how about adding a small folder and include it in the search folders with shortcuts to the control panel items you are interested in?
7132  DonationCoder.com Software / UrlSnooper / Re: Streaming Media Recording Resources on: October 18, 2005, 06:29:34 AM
I went to the site too, and was downloading a number of large files at the time. Slowing down page access this way was interesting ... watch the status bar at the bottom of the browser window as the site contacts ad site after ad site (I gave up after a while but there were loads of them chuntering through all of which chuck cookies onto your system).

Not nice ...

I can't help wondering if this is 'ezboard' or that particular forum causing the problem?
7133  News and Reviews / Official Announcements / Re: NEW - Automatic Instant Activation after Donating on: October 18, 2005, 06:23:10 AM
Good job ...

(ye gods I sound like an American ...HELP  Cry)
7134  News and Reviews / Official Announcements / Re: NEW - Automatic Instant Activation after Donating on: October 18, 2005, 04:48:57 AM
One issue that might need to be made clear (I haven't looked recently so it may have been done) is that the PayPal account email address and the registered forum email address have to be the same (otherwise there isn't a way to connect the two). Personally I didn't want to do that, and caused myself some confusion at the time!! Obviously people can change the forum email after the Charter Member status is confirmed.
7135  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Needed: DVD Audio > MP3 or WAV recommnedations? on: October 18, 2005, 03:27:57 AM
Thanks tinyvillager and clif_notes,

DVD2AVI does the job in a crude way, but you have to edit the resulting file to break it into tracks (for music DVDs) which is very time consuming.

DVDShrink is something I have seen before but doesn't really relate to audio extraction.
7136  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Needed: DVD Audio > MP3 or WAV recommnedations? on: October 17, 2005, 11:23:09 AM
I have a couple of music concert DVDs which I would like to listen to in the car.

I have seem IMToo DVD Audio Ripper ($29) which looks to me to be identical to Xilisoft's version (just a different skin on the same product as far as I can see).

Actually I have had a copy of Intervideo's DVD Copy, which I just discovered will do this ...

The only drawback with the IV product is you have to manually enter all the MP3 tag stuff after the rip  - but it will rip audio , scale it and burn straigh to CD which is useful.
7137  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Needed: DVD Audio > MP3 or WAV recommendations? on: October 17, 2005, 06:14:27 AM
Anyone know of any freeware/donationware apps that do a decent job of grabbing DVD soundtrack data and ripping to CD/WAV or MP3 format? Failing that inexpensive shareware apps.

Ideally I'd like something that can extract tracks (I have software that can rip an entire soundtrack but the editing into music tracks is time consuming).

7138  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: use a real Wiki on this site? on: October 17, 2005, 05:33:34 AM
Which ones are you involved in Brother_S ??
7139  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: use a real Wiki on this site? on: October 17, 2005, 04:01:58 AM
For fear of repeating myself - a wiki could be used for ...

Documentation project for site apps (including coding snacks etc.)
Tips and Tricks
Quick find links for software types/functions/categories etc.

My only worry would be the amount of maintenance necessary and the potential for abuse?

How do WikiPedia cope with these issues?
7140  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: give sticky topics another background color! on: October 17, 2005, 03:58:37 AM
I like the way this has worked out - much better and really clear ... excellent.
7141  News and Reviews / Mini-Reviews by Members / Re: Registry Cleaning Software on: October 16, 2005, 04:50:35 PM
Thanks for letting me know .... now it's time for arm wrestling with Fred Wink
7142  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Partitioning hard drive - any point? on: October 16, 2005, 04:48:31 PM
Because the comparison is only done when data is written reading it is actually faster with RAID 1.

OK nuff said ... personally I think any speed difference for RAID 1 is going to be very marginal (either faster or slower). But you aren't going to get 2x, you don't get near that with RAID 0 ....

7143  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Partitioning hard drive - any point? on: October 16, 2005, 02:35:40 PM
Err... smiley let me quote the page:
Advantages: Twice the Read transaction rate of single disks. 100% redundancy of data means no rebuild is necessary in case of a disk failure, just a copy to the replacement disk.

I still think it's good for home users - it's more safe and speeds things up and HDs are not that expensive anymore if you don't 'need' to buy the very latest model on the market to compete with friends or neighbors.

I think that website is wrong there.

The whole point of RAID 1 is data integrity not speed. As I understand it RAID 1 reads the whole file from both hard discs to confirm data integrity by comparing and writes to two to maintain a mirror copy. There is therefore no speed improvement since you read the data from one place. RAID 1 actually causes a minor degradation in speed because all data has to be read and compared from both drives. To improve speed there would need to be some very clever sharing of reading between the drives by random access to the files - this in itself would slow things down, and would provide no data integrity checking - which defeats the object of RAID 1. When you load a file from RAID 1 you want the system to tell you if there is a single bit difference between the two files - chunk loading from multiple sources would undermine this design principle.

RAID 0 (striping) gives speed improvement because when you save a file it is spread in chunks across all drives in the array so that it takes a fraction of the time to read and write the data because all discs can be accessed simultaneously. Even with this system speed improvements are limited. In theory a 2 drive striped array should be twice as fast as an equivalent single IDE drive, but a few years ago I took part in a speed test on the MSI website to compare theoretical to actual performance. If memory serves correctly RAID 0, the fastest for of RAID, only acheived about 1.6 x normal disc speed because of the overheads and extra cycles involved in addressing multiple drives and assembling data streams in memory.

RAID 0 is great for speed critical applications, but given that SATA drives are inherently fast there are very few situations where a home user would use RAID for this purpose. Even the most disc intensive real life processes would show very small improvement over a standard drive since disc access isn't the sole function of any program.
7144  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Made me chuckle ... how's the upgrade Mouser ... on: October 16, 2005, 10:57:29 AM
The forum seems to be working fine to me. Haven't checked the rest of the site yet.

Seems a tad quicker too ...
7145  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Partitioning hard drive - any point? on: October 16, 2005, 10:56:07 AM
Err, you seems to be confusing RAID 1 with another RAID: http://www.bytepile.com/raid_class.php#02
I like my RAID 1 a lot

No that is exactly what I was thinking ...

RAID 0 (Striping) is great for faster access as two or more drives are used simulatneously to spread the reading/writing. Trouble is the way that is acheived varies from controller to controller (even within a manufacturer) and so a hardware failre in the RAID interface could render your array unrecoverable. A single error on any one of the discs could similarly do likewise.

RAID 1 (Mirroring) is great but it requires two drives to store one data set which is saved to both. This is great if you like to guard against drive failure, but that is quite expensive for home users because you use two drives to effectively do the job of one! If you like this security great - but there is no performance benefit over a normal single drive.

I suppose the best solution is RAID 0+1 where you have both - but then you really need 4 (or more) discs to benefit since half the discs are used in RAID 0 mode, and the other half produce a security mirror. It gives you speed benefit and security but at a price!
7146  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Made me chuckle ... how's the upgrade Mouser ... on: October 16, 2005, 05:04:29 AM
7147  DonationCoder.com Software / Finished Programs / Re: Fun games from Mikes Software Co on: October 16, 2005, 04:59:21 AM
Thanks for the nice comments ... no I haven't heard of Nine Morris Men ... how does that work?

I have found this web version but there don't seem to be any rules ....
7148  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Partitioning hard drive - any point? on: October 16, 2005, 04:54:07 AM
Partitioning has numerous benefits, and a few pitfalls:

1) PageFile ... if you stick it in a separate partition on the same volume as windows it can slow down your system - constant seeking backwards and forwards across the drive introduces delays - especially if the partitions are separated by a large distance. A separate pagefile on a separate partition works much better and increases system throughput. If you have standard drives and a striped array putting your system on the RAID array can make a big difference to.
Yes, you should use a tiny partition next to the OS partition.

If you onlyhvae one physical hard disc this is true, if you have two or more then putting it on a completely separate hard disc is much better as you can access your page file and other system files simultaneously. Same is true for Linux Swap partitions.

2) Separating system and data makes backing up less of a chore - you only need to backup the system occasionally, and you data can easily be backed up regularly. A tool such as Acronis TrueImage is good for this sort of thing as you can schedule regular incremental backups which are really quick. A seperate har disc is good for this - but don't use RAID for backups, they will be more easily damaged in a hardware failure and may be totally unrecoverable. As drives get bigger and bigger it is becoming essential to plan for backups otherwise they become so unwieldly that they are never done!
RAID is PERFECT, be it for backups or not smiley If you want to be on the safe side you just should use RAID 1, no risk there smiley
Too bad Acronis True Image seems to not recognize RAID controllers for backup purposes Sad

RAID 0 is FAR from perfect for backups. If anything goes wrong at all with your system you stand to lose everything on a RAID 0 system as it is very difficult to retrieve RAID 0. With a backup on a standard IDE or SATA disc you can simply move it to another computer, so long as it isn't your backup disc that is damaged. With RAID 0 you would probably have to have an identical RAID controller - and given lots of systems now have integrated RAID controllers this is unlikely to be possible (unless you can find an old motherboard identical to your own).

RAID 1 is fine, but it costs twice as much and has no speed benefits whatsoever so for consumer level systems it seems a bit like overkill!

Strange Acronis recognises my RAID controller ???

3) I also move Temporary file folders and Temporary Internet files to a separate partition. These are quicker to access (esp. if they are on a separate volume) and easier to clean out when you want to. They also reduce fragmentation on the system drive.
I see no need for doing so, instead I recommend the great CCleaner!

The main benefit in my system is I have one PageFile and one Temporary file cache for all my Windows installations - that saves quite a lot of space.

As I said though it is still a good idea because it really reduces fragmentation on your system drive. System files and programs are constantly writing stuff to your Windows drive, and if Temp/Web caching is also stored on that drive everything competes for space and is interleaved on the disc. Files rapidly become fragmented and deleting small files means that new larger files are instantly fragments. Keeping Temp/Cache files away from C: allows Windows to manage its space better on Drive C: so that when I run a defrag program (PerfectDisc) I find that the majority of the disc (labelled infrequently accessed in PerfectDisc) have not fragmented at all, and only directories and recently written files need any defragging at all. This is one of the reasons I moved from DiskKeeper back to PerfectDisc as it consolidates all the rarely modified files in one place on the disc, decreasing access time and reducing defrag time.


4) I run separate multibooting Windows installations (in neighbouring partitions) for some specific applications. For example, video and audio editing can really benefit from having a clean system with a minimal extras installed (not even networking/internet access).
I fully believe you, but personally I prefer to boot my system only every few weeks smiley

I'm afraid I switch my machine off when I go to bed - I already feel a bit guilty leaving it on all day (even when I am not sitting at it - but I believe there are sound hardware reasons for that) because of the growing cost to the environment and global warming (not to mention the UKs ridiculous fuel costs - inc. electricity). I have even started to unplug my TV/DVD/Video etc. unless I am leaving it to record something - did you know these appliances all use 80% power in standby mode!
7149  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Want to wet my beak with Linux,need suggestions on distro. on: October 15, 2005, 03:35:57 PM
Linux tends to be behind the times with hardware, and because it is OpenSource it doesn't seem to matter too much which distro you use.

If you have broadband why not download a few basic distros and try them before deciding?

RedHat is probably the most widely used distro for business and I have tried SUSE with some success.

I tried numerous versions of Mandrake and found there was always a problem getting something installed - usually networking and/or printers.

I can't say any are easy to get working if something doesn't install properly but I had best success with SUSE.

I don't know about other people around here but I have had numerous attempts to use Linux over the years but always find myself back with Windows to run software I want/need that just isn't available for Linux - or only has limited support. I know there are Windows runtime packages for Linux, but to me it seems to defeat the point if you are trying to run Windows software on Linux!!

Also support for NTFS filing system is pretty shonky in most Linux distros (or was last time I looked) and ReiserFS is not supported in Windows so there is little easy cross over of data.
7150  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: What did your first computer's hardware consist of ? on: October 15, 2005, 03:15:41 PM
Sinclair ZX81 ... 1Kb of memory ;-) Most progs had to be written in machine code and 'poked' byte by byte into memory!!

A good computer was the BBC Micro - 32Kb of memory and 100Kb or 200Kb floppy discs but you could still desktop publish and run MIDI music systems.

A remember managing a Prime MiniComputer System with 25 terminals. Had rather lower abilities than even Pentium III processor though, and only 4Mb of memory! Still managed to teach with all the major languages of the day (inc. C, Basic, Pascal, COBOL) and all the usual apps running concurrently.

Computers have come a long way - but surprisingly what can be done hasn't improved as greatly - it is just a bit simpler to achieve !!
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