Archive for December, 2009

Run Portable Ubuntu 7.10 in Windows

I know my posting frequency lately has been rather erratic, but I plan to work out a solid schedule later, assuming all my other assumptions hold through.

If you’re like me, you really want to switch to Linux, but for one reason or another, you can’t really leave Windows. You could dual-boot, but why Ubuntu 7.10not try it out first? You could make a boot-able flash-drive, but this is way cooler. With this handy bit of software, you can actually run Ubuntu 7.10 inside your current Windows operating system! Here’s how to do it:

1. Get your hand on a 1 GB+ flash-drive. The faster the better.
2. Download QPU710.exe here.
3.Download Ubuntu 7.10 ISO here (this will take a while, so grab some Pepsi and crank up the Billy Joel).

3. Extract QPU710.exe to your (empty) flash-drive.
4. Copy the Ubuntu 7.10 ISO to the newly created QPU710 folder.
5. Run QPU710.bat and install the QEMU Accelerator to your flash-drive’s root folder.
6. Once it’s done,  Ubuntu should start to boot. Do not close this window!

7. While it’s booting, hit “f6” to open the boot options and type in “persistent” (without the quotations).

8. Ubuntu will take a few minutes to boot, so in the meantime, learn these shortcuts:

  1. Ctrl-Alt to switch between Ubuntu and Windows.
  2. Ctrl-AlT-F to switch between full-screen and windowed modes (this didn’t work for me thanks too my wide-screen monitor).
  3. Ctrl-Alt-2 to switch to the QEMU Monitor
  4. Ctrl-Alt-1 to switch back to Ubuntu.

9. When it boots, have fun, you’re using Linux – inside Windows! Guaranteed to impress your friends!

10. When you want to close Ubuntu, click shutdown and wait to be prompted to hit “enter” Do not remove the flash-drive. When it tells you “System  Halted,” you can Ctrl-Alt back to Windows, close the windows and remove your flash-drive.

Have fun!

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Microsoft Explorer-Mini Mouse Review

I don’t know if you guys remember, but a while ago, I was complaining about my stupid Logitech v200 that broke down. Now I have a Microsoft Explorer Mini.

The Good: Precise pointing (BlueTrack), solid & ergonomic design, free scrolling wheel, decent battery life, lots of buttons.

The Bad: Scrolling is sometimes slow and only a reboot will fix (Microsoft Mouse bug, not hardware).

Annoyances: Scroll-wheel seems a little loose.

Overview: I got this mouse on sale at Staples. It’s original price was 59.95 $, but I got it for 29.99 $! When I brought it home, the first thing I noticed was the lighting effects. When I saw them on the box I thought they were simply Photoshopped in, but they actually come on every time the mouse wakes up from sleep mode. Then I noticed the free-scrolling. Although there is not alternating option between free-scroll and precise scroll, I found it a much welcomed change. I also liked the back-forward buttons on the right side. Now I can’t live without them. Overall, it has most of the features you’d expect from a mid to high-end mouse, such as horizontal scrolling and a stow-able adapter. At first I got wrist pains from the accuracy and speed of the pointer, but I quickly got used to it. One thing that I really loved was the fact that the laser on the bottom was offset, so you could actually move the pointer just by rotating the mouse slightly. I figure most people wouldn’t notice, but this actually makes the mouse easier to use (although it totally kills and hope for ambidexterity that might have existed before).

Overall, this is a great mouse for its price. It is great for the casual gamer, corporate-raider, or even the jet-setter. Although nothing can beat the Logitech Revolution series, you get much more bang for your buck.

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