Category Archives: Windows

Do File Extensions Really Matter in Windows?

Today I had a perplexing experience. Of late I’m using Fedora 14 as my main operating system though I have windows xp on my machine. I know in Linux operating system file extensions are  not necessary. I mean if you have a file a don’t know what type of file it is (be it multimedia or document file) Linux will some how open it. I don’t know the  reason for it but i was happy for this facility so that I need not worry about what format the file, just double click it the file will open in Linux. In windows the operating system needs to know the extension of the file or else the file won’t open.

Yesterday I downloaded a video from youtube and saved in linux.  I’m using a firefox addon called DownThemAll!. It doesn’t save the download with file extension. Since I was using Fedora i was not bothered about it much. Then for some work I logged onto xp.  Then I tried to play the downloaded video in windows, but it didn’t play because it was not having an File extension.I know it should be either  mp4 or flv, So i tried renaming the file with extension mp4 and it worked.  Then i had a doubt, what if i rename the file with the extension flv and play. So i renamed with the extension flv and played. To my surprise it the file was playing without any glitch. My questions are

  1. If the same file can be played without any problem in two different extensions, then what is the use of having extensions?
  2. If VLC player in Linux can play a file without an extension, why can’t it do the same in windows?
  3. On the first place, What is the reason for having a file extension?
My questions can very dumb, but I’m sure there is an explanation for this. So if anyone knows answer kind post as your reply.

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Cool New Features In Internet Explorer 9

Internet Explorer Mobile Logo

Image via Wikipedia

Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) will come with cool new features, beyond what the four Platform Preview releases of the browser have offered early adopters.

While Microsoft is completely mum on the feature set for the next major iteration of Internet Explorer, the fact is that the company has already decided on the goodies that the successor of IE8 will bring to the table. Moreover, the software giant has also been sharing details related to the new features in Internet Explorer 9 internally.

This should of course, come as no surprise, especially since Microsoft is well known for dogfooding its own software (eating its own dog food, namely testing products internally). Microsoft has not confirmed officially any features for IE9, but most people expect , the wait will be certainly  worth it.

With the last Platform Preview of IE9 already available, Microsoft is now focusing on wrapping up the first Beta development milestone of the browser.  IE9 Beta will be a fully-fledged browser, and judging by the information will also feature some of the new features planned by the software giant. Microsoft  had been holding back on us. Yes, performance is looking great – but they’ve got more up their sleeves. So, wait until the unveiling of the beta.Microsoft has already sent out the Beta invites to the Beauty of the Web event in San Francisco on September 15th, 2010, for the launch of IE9 Beta.

Still, the Beauty of the Web site offers no clues as to what IE9 Beta will bring to the table, acting only as an R.S.V.P. destination for those invited. In the meantime, check out the announcement from James Pratt on the Exploring IE blog. The post is titled Announcing the Beauty of the Web event for IE9 Beta Launch.The only clues related to new IE9 features came from leaked screenshots of an early Beta Build, which sported additions such as a download manager.

Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) Platform Preview 4 is available for download here.

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Internet explorer 9 Preview

Internet Explorer Mobile Logo

Image via Wikipedia

Microsoft has just released  the fourth and final IE9 developer preview, little bit ahead of schedule.The news is much the same as the previous release: More hardware acceleration! Faster! More standards compliant! But there’s some juicy stuff under the hood, too — read on, if you want technical details. If you want developer-level stuff, check the IE team’s new blog post. .

First, it looks like audio is now hardware accelerated. There’s both a multi-track mixer/sampling demo, and some daft Hamster Dance Revolution game — both show off strong audio processing abilities. I’ve never really thought of audio as being important for the Web platform, but I guess if we’re going to see increasingly-complex in-the-browser games and applications, having hardware audio access is highly desirable.

Next, there’s yet more support and hardware acceleration for SVG animation. Have a go with the dice rolling demo or the aforementioned music games — pretty damn cool for in-the-browser animation.

Finally, with JavaScript performance (they’ve moved Chakra inside the rendering engine, it seems) and standards compliance (Acid3 score of 95/100!) both getting very close to both Opera and Chrome, IE9 looks in fine shape to regain the trust of developers. With the platform now finished, it’s now up to the IE team (and Microsoft!) to woo the big-money developers and content providers. There’s a lot of new and exciting functionality in IE9, but it’s going to take time and skill to utilize it successfully.

My only real concern is that the Internet Explorer team has put a lot of its eggs in the hardware accelerated basket. Firefox 4.0 will be hardware accelerated, and Opera has also confirmed that hardware acceleration is in the pipeline. It makes you wonder what Google has up its sleeve — the Internet isn’t just about JavaScript performance, and when you take that ace away from Chrome, it doesn’t have much else. But when every browser has hardware acceleration, what can IE9 bring to the table?

Surely it then becomes a matter of end-user experience. If IE9 launches later this year, it might have the edge for a while, but the whole point of open standards like HTML, CSS, JS and SVG is that every browser can support them. I worry that the Internet

Explorer team might produce a fantastic browser, but one that simply isn’t as.

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New Improved Storage Format

Till now all  hard drives are formatted into 512 kb blocks of size.  The 512kb size came from IBM which used it on it’s Floppy drive. The problem with this is that all blocks have marker telling where the block is beginning, a dedicated area to store error correction codes. In addition to this space has to be left between each blocks which leads to wastage of space.hardIn the above picture from the point where it is denoted as starting till the red coloured part is one block. The red coloured block represents the area where error correction codes are stored. The greed coloured parts denote the empty space between each block. As one can observe the total storage space which is usable is very less when we use 512 kb block size. This is the reason why we cannot use the full capacity of hard disk.

Now hard disk manufacturers have decided to adopt a new format i.e using a 4k block. Moving to an advanced format of 4K sectors means about eight times less wasted space but will allow drives to devote twice as much space per block to error correction."We can put more data on the disk," he said. "It’s about 7-11% more efficient as a format."

One may think why should I bother about it. The reason is that except windows xp all operating systems including recent versions of linux and Mac os support 4k blocks. Does that mean the end of hard drives for Windows XP, currently the world’s top operating system?  Not quite.  Then  plan is gracious enough to call for the 4 KB (4096 byte segment) to be aligned with the past 512 byte segment.  So Windows XP users can still buy new drives and use them. 

But the problem is with the performance .In some cases what took a single operation on older drives will take two operations due to an emulation layer needed to allow Windows XP to treat the new drive format like the old one.  Overall, experts estimate users will take a 10 percent performance hit.

We all love windows xp for it’s unrivalled performance, but when we use newer hard disks the performance will be hit. Already stats indicate that windows 7 has hit 10% market share and xp is slowly loosing it’s share because most companies are upgrading to windows 7. So be ready to bid farewell to world’s most used operating system.

Amazing Errors

Windows operating system is infamous for it’s errors and bugs, but recently I got an mail which was having screen shots some amazing windows errors. I’m sharing it with  you see and enjoy.
























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