Just bought a new Linksys WRVS4400N Router!

WRVS4400N Purchased on eBay just today (not a venue I normally purchase hardware from, but they had an unbeatable price of $100.00, which is more than half off it’s regular price). 

This  router is so high-end, it boggles the imagination.   It has Wireless-N, dual-band reception, a VPN server, and even Intrusion Protection (IP).  Not to mention GIGABIT network speeds for the local network, and full backward compatibility for Wireless G (and way old “B”) connections.

My life will be so much easier after I get this router installed: I can retire the VPN function that my tired old Windows 2000 Server currently controls, and my VPN will be back-up and running again!  

It will offer me future growth capability in two areas, I currently do not have Wireless-N clients yet, nor are any of my desktop’s equipped with Gigabit Ethernet adapters, so whenever I wish to take advantage of those technologies, they are there waiting for me.

The big benefit for me will be Intrusion Protection (IP) feature, which is a step further than an SPI Firewall (Stateful Packet Inspection), which the unit also comes with as an Industry standard.

But it’s the VPN that I will get the most use out of.  I use VPN on almost a daily basis to link my laptop with my home network so I can access File Shares and FTP.

I’ll be reviewing this unit in the near future. Hopefully it’ll get high-marks…  

New LiveWriter Technical Preview Available

Of interest to me and any other bloggers out there: Microsoft has a Technical Preview of the latest version of LiveWriter available here.

This release is largely about updates to the Writer SDK, which now includes hooks for pre- and post-publish events. These updates are still experimental and these APIs are not stable–we may make changes based on your feedback that break plug-ins that use these new methods. However, we’re really excited about the new set of scenarios have been unlocked and look forward to hearing feedback from all of you Writer plug-in developers out there.

For more details about the SDK, please see the blog post on Windows Live Dev.

New Features

You’ll also get an early look at some improvements and new features we’ve been working on:

Video and Image Publishing Enhancements

  • Upload videos to Soapbox
  • Image cropping and tilting
  • Additional border styles
  • Support for LightBox and other image previewing effects (like Slimbox, Smoothbox, and others)
  • Support for centering images

Editing Enhancements

  • Auto Linking
  • Smart quotes/typographic characters
  • Word count

UI Improvements

  • Revised main toolbar
  • Tabs for view switching
  • Improved category control with search/filtering

Gathering data on Shavlik NetChk Protect

shavlik_logo I just installed Shavlik’s NetChk Protect 6.1.0 (build 57), a product that that I used more than a year ago, back when it was version 5.31.   This previous product ran for a whole year and kept my six systems (one server, two laptops, and three desktops) fully up-to-date. 

Sure, Windows Update can do this for you for free, but the process is controlled by Microsoft, who does not always have the consumer’s best interest in mind when they install products like Windows Genuine Advantage, which can take a totally legitimate installation of Windows XP and disable it for no apparent reason.

Also, NetChk Protect updates a lot of common non-MS applications like Adobe Reader,  WinZip, etc…

I will be performing a product review of the NetChk Protect application in the future, so we’ll see how this product does in the next month or so…

No help from 2Wire this time…

2wire_red_logo Good news and bad news on the home DSL front.  The good news is that 2Wire sent me word today that they would love to be able to help me.   Unfortunately, (can you sense the pending bad news?), they then told me that they will be unable to assist me further, as their inventory of the 6v 2000mA A/C adapter is exhausted.

So I have a perfectly good Router that can’t be powered-up because all of the A/C adapters burn-out prematurely.

It looks like I’ll end-up buying a nice Linksys router instead…   Any ideas?

SoftMaker Office 2008 for Pocket PCs is shipping!

softmaker_textmaker Now available: SoftMaker Office 2008 for Pocket PCs…

After extensive beta testing, we are proud to announce that SoftMaker Office 2008 for Pocket PCs is shipping and ready for purchase.

This new version of our mobile office suite has significant advantages:

  • NEW: SoftMaker Presentations, the mobile alternative to PowerPoint.
  • NEW: PDF export in all Office applications.
  • NEW: Printing from all applications (JETCET PRINT is bundled).
  • NEW: Many new features in TextMaker 2008 and PlanMaker 2008.

softmaker_planmakerIf you wish to edit Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files on the Pocket PC without losing formatting or content, SoftMaker Office is your only choice. There is no other mobile office suite that reads and writes your Office documents as faithfully as SoftMaker Office 2008.

Find out more:

If you own an older version of TextMaker, PlanMaker, or SoftMaker Office, you are entitled to special upgrade pricing — you can find the details on our web site above.