Tag Archives: Paul Thurrott

Windows 7 Beta Release … Huge Failure Friday – Back again Saturday … Apology on Monday

Update: Saturday January 10th 1:00 PM eastern time.

Site is back up .. Key acquired … all is right with the world.

Update 2: Monday January 12th 9:00 AM. Microsoft Apologizes – 2.5 million key limit removed!

“I know many of you had issues with the Windows 7 beta site of the last 24 hours,” Brandon LeBlanc, a Windows communications manager, wrote in a blog post. “As you may have noticed the download site has been up and running smoothly since this morning. That said, we apologize for the inconvenience that it caused some of you.”

Friday January 9th

OK, to start with there wasn’t a clear statement on when the Windows 7  Beta was going to be released or which website to go to to get it.

So at 9:00 AM I started watching the site http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-7/default.aspx . The site was not available for quite a while … and then came up with the message Windows 7 Beta available for public download the afternoon of January 9th.  Geez … they couldn’t be a little more specific … like eastern time or pacific time or zulu time?

I trudge on … checking the site every few minutes  … Noon eastern time passes, 1:00pm comes and goes … 2:00 PM slides on by … I’m getting excited now as 3:00 PM approaches .. so pacific time  … that makes sense right … NOPE – 3:00 PM passes and I’m still checking the site every few minutes … ARGHHH!

I keep plugging away and around 6:00 PM eastern time I notice a message on the web page:

Thanks for your interest in the Windows 7 Beta. The volume has been phenomenal—we’re in the process of adding more servers to handle the demand. We’re sorry for the delay and we’ll re-post the Beta as soon as we can ensure a quality download experience.

Now I assume those guy’s and gal’s at Microsoft are pretty smart .. and they have tons of servers right … and its not too hard to add servers so I decide to keep trying … because I’m been doing this since 9:00 AM this morning and I’ll be damned if I’m going to quit  to have the beta come back up an hour later and the 2.5 million keys be gone when I try again tomorrow. 7:00PM …drags by … then 8:00 slowly ticks past … What .. is the server guy on vacation? 9:00 PM and I’m starting to get a little testy … at 10:00 PM I’m burning holes  in the shape of an X in the custom Windows 7  T-shirt I made for the occasion with my cigarette. 11:00 PM … yep you guessed it still no love from Microsoft.

I mean they could have said something … like come back tomorrow at noon pacific … instead of leaving me hanging with false hope  …

I went over to Friendfeed to see what my mentors had to say .. Paul Thurrott (my favorite tech person) was strangley quiet after his initial post about the beta availability … Chris Pirillo posted about the fail and posted a link for the direct download of the beta  http://www.lockergnome.com/griffin/2009/01/09/windows-7-public-beta-direct-download-links/ . Thanks Chris, but what we really want is an official release with the key that’s good thru August and not just the 30 day “no key” beta.

Now its 2:17 AM Saturday and NO the Beta is still not there. I’m throwing in my Mahalo towel and giving up for the night!

Paul Thurrott, I know you’re a pretty laid back guy… but I truly hope to hear you rant at least a little on the next  Windows Weekly about this whole debacle.

I’ve run the PDC Beta for a while. I like it.

Yeah I know Beta 1 is free … I already have the the Beta 1 from a direct link.

My concern is there are only 2.5 million keys and from the results yesterday its apparent they will disappear quickly … that’s what caused the “traffic jam” Friday and my complaint is about Microsoft’s handling of information …

“available the afternoon of January 9th” caused part of the problem and the vague follow up of “we’ll re-post the Beta as soon as we can ensure a quality download experience” continued it.



Got Windows 7 ? .. find out how to unlock the special features

This was discussed last week on Leo Laporte’s TWIT podcast featuring Paul Thurrott and Within Windows blogger Rafael Rivera discussing Microsoft PDC and Windows 7.

Rafael stumbled upon the unlock while looking thru the mounds of stuff provided at PDC and posted the how to on his blog. Way to go Rafael 2 points for you!

read more | digg story

You should also check out Ed Botts follow up story.

The Kindness of Strangers – Jason Calacanis – Mahalo

Anyway … I’m not famous, or important, or a prodigy. I do crave the wisdom of people who I admire for their knowledge, wit, or accomplishments.

One of those people is Jason Calacanis.

I subscribe to his newsletter… and follow his posts on twitter and friendfeed and elsewhere. I often reply to his newsletter and in one “How to Generate Feedback for Your Startup (three simpleideas)” was a Question: “Do you have any ideas on how to engage people in your startups development?” and in the comments a was …   “Kevin W. had a lot of suggestions, among his best was “* To help drive  traffic, how about a referral program where you earn a couple of points for everyone you get to visit the site. You can then redeem your points for cash, music downloads, Mahalo merchandise, or whatever.” I love this idea. In fact, we’ve been thinking about doing this since day one, but we’ve focused like a laser on the core product. Maybe next year on this one.

Well I also agreed this idea had merit and mentioned it to Jason in my reply noting everyone wants a Mahalo coffee mug.

You could have knocked me over with a feather when I got a reply… (I mean Jason must get what 2000+ emails a day?). In his reply he thanked me for my comments and offered to send me some Mahalo coffee mugs. True to his word I received 3 mugs and a beach towel in the mail today courtesy of his assistant at Mahalo – Jason Krute. Mahalo … join the ohana!

Thanks Jason (both of you) … if there were a “My name is Jason” show on TV you would definetly be getting some extra karma points!

Here’s the picture … I’m doing my impersonation of Paul Thurrott (he uses a coffee cup the same way on his twitter pic).

toddlorensinclair goes mahalo

toddlorensinclair goes mahalo

Backups on external drives .. recommendations

I wrote this in response to a question on a CNET post … I thought it would be pertinent here also.

Ben … first of all … don’t believe what they tell you … SIZE does matter!

You’d be surprised how fast that space fills up once you have it available.

Before I get to the recommendations I feel obligated to say that any backup solution should include off site storage … If your house burns down or you get burglarized .. you’ve got bupkiss! So, I suggest getting two 500gb usb external drives … if you’re a clever shopper you can find them around $100 each. The price difference for anything smaller is negligible. (you might even find 750gb’s for that amount. Take one to work with you and leave it there… then swap them out once a week.

I recommend Seagate, Maxtor or Western Digital … they are generally more reliable than off name brands. Also a note … stay away from “refurbished” or “Factory renewed” they will have a much shorter warranty and tend to break the week after the warranty has expired. Some drives may have some backup software included on the drive.. in my opinion that software sucks … (pardon my french).

As far as the backups I recommend doing 2 things.

Really what you want to save is you music, your videos, your email, and your documents. That is the important stuff! The best thing to do when you have a drive fail or a virus infect your system is to wipe the drive and reinstall the operating system and then copy your backed up data back on to it.

As a backup method … Microsoft has a free program called synctoy .. I’ve been using synctoy 2 beta .. which has been very stable for me (I heard Paul Thurrott recommend it). You select the folders in each location and the program synchronizes those 2 folders. There are several additional options you can choose.. you’ll understand once you see it. Once you have it set up you can also create a scheduled task to run daily or weekly etc. That’s it… like that Ronco Rotisserie Oven commercial “just set it and forget it”.

The second part is to make an exact image of your entire drive. Obviously this takes up more space on your storage and you should make a new updated image periodically. The advantage is that if something bad happens you pop in the boot Cd for the program and answer a few questions and in about 5 or 10 minutes your drive is back to exactly the way it was when you made the image . Ideally you would make one of these on a clean install with all the programs you normally use installed and the settings tweaked the way you like them … and Microsoft updates current. This saves a lot of time versus having to reinstall all your programs and settings again in the future. Acronis True Image or Norton Ghost are the programs I would recommend. Some of these programs will allow you to browse the image file as a hard drive and restore individual files or folders. Now if you use Vista its important to pay attention to which version you buy … older versions won’t work with Vista.

So that’s my opinion … and I think Leo Laporte would agree with me. Leo?

The Podcasts We Juice.

We spend a lot of time in transit so we use that time to keep up with the news on our favorite podcasts. We download the podcasts with Juice podcast receiver them copy them over to an SD card for our TomTom Go 720
and listen to them over the car stereo.

Here is what we are listening to currently:

Buzz Out Loud from Cnet

Molly Tom Jason

John Dvorak et al

John Dvorak et al

Geek News Central

Geek News Central wTodd Cochrane

Amber MacArthur and Leo Laporte

Amber MacArthur

PcMag Radio

PcMag Radio

Tech Podcast

Tech Podcast

Call Leo

Call Leo


The Week in Tech

Paul Leo & Windows

Paul Leo & Windows

Between the Lines

Between the Lines

More Leo Laporte

More Leo Laporte

If listen to one that’s in the same vein as these let me know and I’ll take a look. Thanks!