Friday, December 18, 2009

WINXP - Report on Firefox Browser

I have just started to use Mozilla Firefox Browser at home and work. So here's my impressions when run on WinXP.

(Note that I use Firefox on my Linux Ubuntu Notebook PC)

Off the bat, it is faster than IE8 (which I run at home/work).

Has some very nice Add-ons you can install via Firefox's Tools menu.

I am using Firefox to post this article as we "speak." It is very nice in appearance and ease of use.

I highly suggest you try it, and it's FREE.

Here is a list of recommended Add-ons:
  • Add Bookmark Here (adds this to the top of each Bookmark list)
  • CheckPlaces (verifies URL & can update Favcons)
  • FireFTP
  • ABC SpellBound (spelling checker)
  • CookieSafe (tracks cookies & includes Blacklist option)
  • View Cookies (easy way to view cookies on a page via Tools, Page Info)
  • Print Preview (you can add a [Print Preview] button to Toolbar)
  • Default FullZoom Level 4.3 (easy way to set zoom factor)

I did find one fault which I've reported to Mozilla. The Firefox Print-to-Fit does not work properly.

Example you go to the Star Wars article in Wikipedia, there are tables. The print-out from Firefox, the tables are chopped-off on the right, in IE8 the full table is shown. Small annoyance as far as I'm concerned.

(12/22/2009 update)

Just discovered something due to a problem another Firefox user had.

Some sites may have music that plays in the background. The problem is the HTML code used is an outdated Microsoft Frontpage standard called "bgsound" that is IE only code.

It is not supported by Firefox. The new HTML standard is to use what is called an embedded object, like the code use by YouTube which you can add to your WEB page (like this blog).

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

HARDWARE - Have a Legacy System?

Is your PC a Legacy System?

In this case I am talking about the hardware in your system being "old." The problem is getting hardware replacements because they are no longer manufactured.

But don't give up. There are many suppliers who specialize on stocking legacy hardware or even entire systems.

For example, my Desktop System at home is legacy because:

  • I use IDE drives (2 ports)

  • AGP8X video port

  • Floppy

I just have too much on my drives, etc., to do a complete reinstall if I wanted to upgrade (for example) an Intel Core 2 processor motherboard. Or at least I thought so at the time.

When I first looked at Intel Core 2 motherboards, they came with only one IDE port, some had no Floppy port, and none had an AGP port.

I did upgrade, but to a legacy motherboard that could use a Pentium 4, LGA775 socket, 3GHz, Hyper Threading. So I get very good speeds even with high-resource games like Bioshock, Assassin's Creed, Far Cry 2, or Fallout 3.

The other day, because my video card started to go, I was searching around via Google, and lo-and-behold I found a motherboard WITH all the legacy support I needed AND could use Intel Core 2 LGA775 socket! Also, I could use my existing Processor if I wanted to.

It is the P4M800PRO-M (V2.0) motherboard from ECS Elitegroup. AND I could (and did) order it from Amazon (for a very good price), in addition to a Intel Core 2, 3GHz, LGA775 socket. Even better, it supports 2gb max memory, but two different types Memory Sticks (4 memory slots, 2 of each type), including the memory I already have.

This means, when my present motherboard goes out, I'll have an upgrade motherboard ready.

This is just to show my readers not to give up on upgrading or repairing your system at low cost.

Why did I order a replacement motherboard when I don't need one now? It is still a legacy motherboard and ECS does not manufacture it any more. So I got it while I could.

By the way, the Google search string I used (including the quotes):
motherboard "lga775 socket" agp8x

There were other variations, but that was the basic search line.