Thursday, February 28, 2008


Windows Vista Experience Index

My Windows Experience Index for Vista Home Premium is 4.0 (as shown in the pic above). My PC's specs are:

Intel Pentium 4 2.6GHz.
120 GB 7200RPM Ultra-ATA HDD
1GB Kingston DDR-400 RAM
nVidia GeForce 7600GT - 256MB Video RAM

From Windows Vista's standards, my PC turns out to be a "very good performing PC" even though I have a pretty old processor and motherboard chipset. Vista loves graphic memory no end and my GeForce 7600GT gives it all the memory it could possibly need. This means that I can play my favorite games with reasonable detail (one or two levels below Full Detail) and that too with only 1 GB RAM. Browsing around on the Internet, you'd find people arguing whether or not 1 GB RAM is enough for Vista. As you can see from my specs above, it's more than enough as my PC runs smooth as hell. I can run Firefox, Windows Media Player (with video playing), AVG Virus Scan and MS Word and my memory consumption is 75% only and it's slightly sluggish. More than acceptable if you ask me.

Obviously, I am limited by my board to upgrade RAM (since there are DDR2's around which I'll end up upgrading to someday) ... but if you have 1GB, you need not worry you'll run Vista just fine. Just make sure you don't clutter your Windows with too many startup programs and other stuff that can potentially slow it down. There's a nice article here by the Vista team that can help you boost your Vista's speed.

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Sunday, February 17, 2008


Good old Windows

You know you're running Windows when there are a plethora of programs that have gone unresponsive. there's no respite, as Task Manager simply does not show, neither does pressing Ctrl-Alt-Del do anything (In actual fact, it brings up an error that says: Logon process failed to create the security options dialog) And all I did was close a Firefox tab! Puhhleaseee! This leaves you with no option but to open Notepad, pen down a few lines in frustration and go for the RESET button.

Good old Windows! They should change it's tag line to something like:

Windows Vista - Crashes the same way as it's predecessor

And that's saying something! =)


Tuesday, February 05, 2008


Installing Apache, mySQL and PHP on VISTA

I remember this installation on XP used to be simple as hell before mySQL5 came out and PHP stopped their built-in support. Then, getting the right DLL for Apache servers proved to be a problem and for some time, users had to download the DLLs for the newer version from the web! While it ain't so messed up any more, installing these things on VISTA is still a bit tricky - certainly not as straightforward as before. For the record, I have VISTA Home Premium so I don't really if some of the issues I faced here also hold true for other editions.

So, to get started, I first installed Apache in C: drive only to find out VISTA did not let it create the configuration files - httpd.conf and mime.types. A workaround, install somewhere else or copy manually. While the installation steps are simple and need no walking through, I would, however, suggest changing the Control Apache Server shortcuts to always 'Run in Administrator' mode and set compatibility to 'Windows XP SP2' for Monitor Apache Servers link to get it to work.

Next up is mySQL. This installation is a breeze and needs no explaining IMO - no seriously!

Lastly, PHP - having extracted the .ZIP to C:\php\ (or whatever directory you wish), make sure you copy the files ntwdblib.dll and libmysql.dll to C:\windows\system32\ or else you can say good bye to mySQL support in PHP. Also, remember to uncomment these lines in php.ini:

All this may sound simple enough, but without any prior experience of VISTA's circumspect behavior in such installations, this took quite some of my time. Btw, all this was in an effort to test Joomla's latest stable release for a bug fix which I'm glad to report has been fixed! Hurrah!

Here's the sofwtare versions I worked with:
Apache 2.2.4
PHP 5.2.2
MySQL 5.0
and of course VISTA Home Premium

Hope it helped!

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