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Author Topic: November Discounts and Giveaway  (Read 12257 times)

cthorpe

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November Discounts and Giveaway
« on: November 05, 2007, 09:21:34 PM »
Just a quick note to let you know that discounts and giveaways will be posted shortly.

At this time, we have the following discounts on tap:

DefenseWall HIPS - 30% discount with quite a few licenses to give away
Gizmo reviewed this on Techsupport Alert and had good things to say:
Quote
Of the products tested DefenseWall was the outstanding performer with near perfect test results across the board. Additionally, it is small and consumed few computer resources.

It's exemplary performance could be attributed in part to the fact that this was the only sandbox based HIPS product in this series of reviews.
The review is located here: www.techsupportalert.com/security_HIPS.htm (right now his site appears to be down)

CPUIdle - 30% discount and possibly licenses to give away
This program was mentioned favorably by lanux128 here: http://www.donationc...87.msg72537#msg72537
Quote
however in one of the threads, i noticed that there was a mention of CpuIdle to "cool" the system. i've heard of these type of software before, such as Rain, CpuCool and WinHLT but didn't think much of them. but among others, CpuIdle claims to "enhance stability" and i was desperate enough to try it out..

and after several days of usage, i am happy to report that CpuIdle manages to tame the high cpu activity and make the system usable. the spikes in cpu usage does occur, though not as frequently as before.. and since my other alternative is to get a new motherboard, this is much welcomed.



Carl R. Thorpe
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Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2007, 09:25:03 PM »
Ooohh... CPUIdle! I've been wanting to give that a closer look - now I've no more excuses (well, now I simply have NO excuse, never had a list, really...)  :Thmbsup:
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

f0dder

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2007, 08:17:34 AM »
Humm, CPUIdle used to make a difference in the win9x days, but I don't see a reason to run it on NT, which already does HLT in it's idle thread, as well as power management. (Ok, cpuidle can do tricks with certain chipsets, like turning off part of the chipset, but... ho humm).
- carpe noctem

TucknDar

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2007, 08:49:38 AM »
I prefer RM CLock over CPUIdle as it fixed (well, worked around is more correct) an annoying issue with my laptop, but looking at some recommendations of CPUIdle it seems it can be helpful for some.

How about Defensewall HIPS? Worth it? Or rather, is it worth the yearly upgrade fee?

Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2007, 08:55:10 AM »
After reading f0dder's points above, I decided to download and install cpuidle. Early days to say anything about it yet, but reading the FAQ and the description about it, a list of reasons not to bother with it began to coalesce in my mind, and looked familiar as well! Being an open-minded individual, I proceeded anyway and installed it. We'll see what happens from here.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2007, 09:26:27 AM »
Don't know anything about Defensewall HIPS, other than that it seems popular. Thanks for pointing me to RM Clock - I'm checking it out, too  :Thmbsup:
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2007, 10:41:16 AM »
Re-reading lanux128's original post (as linked to by Josh in the op of this thread), CPUIdle probably will NOT do much for me. My system is pretty stable and I don't really have an overheating problem. I also have no onboard sensors for CPU temperature so can't gauge that, either...
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Grorgy

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2007, 03:38:59 PM »
I just tried cpuidle over night and one thing that i noticed is that if you use copernic desktop search set to index when idle, it doesnt when cpuidle is running, dont know how it checks for idleness but thats what what happened.

f0dder

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2007, 05:16:22 PM »
that i noticed is that if you use copernic desktop search set to index when idle, it doesnt when cpuidle is running, dont know how it checks for idleness but thats what what happened.
Iirc there's only one Idle Thread, cpuidle probably hogs that?
- carpe noctem

Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2007, 09:16:48 AM »
George, it occurs to me that the problem most likely lies with a different Copernic setting, like "don't index when cpu usage is above XX%" or something similar (don't have Copernic installed so can't check). Might be worth looking at...

I'm starting to see sporadic unheralded and unwelcome reboots on my XP Pro machine. Can't quite match it up to having CPUIdle installed and running, but I can say that it's happened twice SINCE I installed it and never before... I *think* it has to do with changing settings in CPUIdle options. Will follow up on this and post back later today.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Grorgy

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2007, 04:04:13 PM »
Darwin, there is an option just to do the indexing anyway, or at set times of the day but it is a fairly disk intensive process as you would know and given my usage, set times are next to useless.  letting it do it when idle is by far the best option for me.  I dont actually have a need for cpuidle, my computers are both running well, no apparent over heating or other such nasties.  I'd rather have a search function, and i gotta say I'm pretty happy with copernic, less resource intensive than the others Ive tried, and with archivarius and locate for the more specialised searches it fits in well.

Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2007, 06:11:56 PM »
Heh, heh - great minds think alike! I dropped in here to say that I'd uninstalled CPUIdle for the same reasons (well, barring the indexing thing - Archivarius didn't have a problem with it)...
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Ralf Maximus

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2007, 07:30:33 PM »
I got curious about CPUIdle and some of the other software CPU coolers, and this is what I learned about how they work.

Essentially they issue a processor HLT command, which halts the CPU until a non-maskable interrupt occurs or it is manually un-halted.  Basically, HLT stops the CPU clock; kind of a pause button.  Obviously each package has its own "is the CPU idle?" threshold measurement mechanism.  This (and the UI) is what sets them apart.

Why is pausing the CPU good?  When the CPU is halted, it consumes virtually no power and thus, generates no heat. In some modern workstations, this can be the difference between a 40-watt bulb and a 300-watt halogen.

Why is this bad?  To restart the CPU requires a bit of overhead and (probably) a bunch of Windows context switches.  The delay comes not necessarily from the un-halting, rather it's a byproduct of CPUIdle watching the system and initiating the restart.  My guess is CPUIdle installs its own NMI (or hijacks an existing one) and redirects to its own code.   Halting/unhalting once every few seconds it's probably not a big deal.  Done multiple times per second, it could be a hit on performance.  Oh, and depending on how good the "CPU idle?" mechanism works, some important background activities could be missed or delayed.

Note that "a hit on performance" while describing something meant to run when things are idle may seem silly, but it's that second bit -- the waking up -- I wonder about.  Move the mouse and that generates an NMI and wakey-wakey... does it result in a micro-delay?  Probably.  Does it matter?  Probably not for a mouse.  But for a hard-drive?  A network card?

As Grorgy notes, some software doesn't generate the proper stimulus to awaken the CPU, so that raises questions about what else isn't getting acknowledged in a timely fashion.  Could Darwin's instability be a result of some interrupts not being serviced quickly enough?  It's one thing if your background MP3 downloads stall; quite another if your backup software isn't backing up, or various Windows services miss a beat here and there.  Remember, only NMIs natively reverse a HLT, and those are usually hardware generated.  Everything else has to be faked by CPUIdle.

It's probably a great tool for the uber-tweakers, and may even extend the life for a normal machine on the edge of failing.  It's certainly gotten glowing reviews from folks who watch their CPU core temp for a hobby.

There is also some irony in somebody tweaking a box to within microseconds of failure -- overclocking, water-cooling, Satanic rites -- and then installing a tool which, essentially, stops their CPU entirely.  And then exacts a small performance fee to restart it every few thousand microseconds.


f0dder

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2007, 08:37:11 AM »
Ralf Maximus: the NT idle thread already does HLT, so CPUIdle doesn't have an advantage there.

The CPU will always be woken N times per second because of the clock tick. Recent linux kernels have the option of running "tickless", which means a timer tick is only generated when necessary, not N times per second - but that didn't seem to have any advantages on x86 systems.

An external interrupt will always bring the CPU out of the HLT state (unless NMIs are masked, of course), and because of the timer tick, your system won't sleep indefinitely even if there's no other external interrupt signalled.

Btw I'm pretty sure more recent processors (intel speedstep, amd cool&quiet) have more to it than just HLT, at least you have to choose the correct "power mode" in windows for it to be effective... I'd rather use that than installing third-party software.

Again: cpuidle was fine for 9x, but why use it on NT?
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Ralf Maximus

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2007, 09:13:38 AM »
Quote
The CPU will always be woken N times per second because of the clock tick.

If you're speaking of THE CLOCK, the crystal-driven heartbeat of the CPU, then that's what the HLT command supposedly stops.  The CPUIdle website itself explicitly says it issues a HLT statement to work its voodoo.

According to this MSKB article, NT's Idle thread is a real process that simply does nothing (if I understand it correctly).  Where does HLT fit into this?

I'm not discounting what you say; I'm not qualified.  I gave up assembly language years ago and only know what I read from the Intel & MS docs.  But CPUIdle is doing *something* and according to them it's driven by the HLT command.

Is it possible we are saying the same thing in different ways?

f0dder

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2007, 09:53:27 AM »
Quote
The CPU will always be woken N times per second because of the clock tick.

If you're speaking of THE CLOCK, the crystal-driven heartbeat of the CPU, then that's what the HLT command supposedly stops.  The CPUIdle website itself explicitly says it issues a HLT statement to work its voodoo.
No, the clock tick is a separate tick with programmable rate, known as the PIT (programmable interrupt timer) - and iirc, modern CPUs have local APIC timers which are better. You don't turn off those when HLT'ing.

According to this MSKB article, NT's Idle thread is a real process that simply does nothing (if I understand it correctly).  Where does HLT fit into this?
Not a process but a thread - which only gets scheduled when there's nothing else to schedule. This thread basically runs HLT in a loop (obviously it won't loop while HLTed, but looping is done so it does HLTing again when re-scheduled).

I'm not discounting what you say; I'm not qualified.  I gave up assembly language years ago and only know what I read from the Intel & MS docs.  But CPUIdle is doing *something* and according to them it's driven by the HLT command.
9x didn't do HLT in it's idle loop afaik, so CPUIdle made a lot of sense back then.

CPUIdle might be doing HLT at *other* times than the idle thread to keep power consumption down, but that would affect performance a bit, and be slightly retarded, especially considering the power-saving/speed-changing stuff recent processors have.
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Ralf Maximus

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2007, 10:00:48 AM »
Thanks for the clarifications, f0dder.  I'm tempted to go back and read up on current Intel architecture, but honestly it's gotten so complicated. 

The power management features alone seem simple in concept, but wonderously complex upon further examination.  Pile on top of it the layers of abstraction we see everything through, and I'm amazed anything works at all, much less CPUIdle.

Thanks again!  I've learned a lot from the November Discounts thread. :-)

dalchina

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #17 on: November 20, 2007, 07:49:23 AM »
Hi, just noticed today DefenseWall is available for free as a 'Giveawayoftheday' on
http://www.giveawayoftheday.com/.

You've about 18 hours to get it...and counting...from 2pm GMT 19/11/07.. mmm, probably got that wrong somewhere, I'm in China!


 

lanux128

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #18 on: November 20, 2007, 08:57:54 PM »
somehow i've missed this earlier, for me CpuIdle was a stop-gap solution that's why i included this disclaimer (see below).. anyway since then that motherboard had died on me so now i'm now on the look-out for a whole new system.. more of that here and here.

P.S. a small disclaimer: benefits of software in this category are highly subjective and only in case of a unique situation like mine that it's usage is likely to be required.

HankFriedman

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #19 on: November 22, 2007, 11:18:17 PM »
I would like to share my feedback about DefenseWall.

I've used it for a few months and have found it to be excellent in creating an incredibly protected surfing environment. I found software on another website that tested HIPS systems rigorously, and DefenseWall passed every test with flying colors.

In addition, its creator has given me the best customer service (even during the trial period when I hadn't purchased it yet) of anyone I've ever dealt with.

so if you want to surf safely, I give DefenseWall my highest recommendation.

n8chavez

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2007, 11:54:22 AM »
How can I take advantage of the DefenseWall discount?

Darwin

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #21 on: November 30, 2007, 12:04:37 PM »
Wow, n8chavez - it's been over 18 months since you donated and became a charter/supporting member and this is your first post  :Thmbsup: Welcome! Anyway, to take advantage of the discount go to the Specials link in the header above (or click the hyperlink I've created) and click on "View" next to DefenceWall HIPS. You'll see the announcement at the top of the list (at the moment it's sticky so is highlighted in blue and at the top of the board).

Hope this helps.
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SKA

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Re: November Discounts and Giveaway
« Reply #22 on: December 02, 2007, 10:49:06 PM »
I found software on another website that tested HIPS systems rigorously, and DefenseWall passed every test with flying colors.
-------------
HankFriedman - which website is that ? A link perhaps ?

SKA