Plip's Weblog

Phil Winstanley - British .NET chap based in Lancashire. Enjoys tea and tech. Working for Microsoft.

March 2007 - Posts

The Gazebo awakens

Mike Taulty has just suffered at the hands of the evil Windows Update gremlins.

To help Mike with the ranting, here's what my Gazebo thinks of Windows Update restarting your machine without asking.

MIX - I'll be there

Who else is going to be around at MIX? :-)

Posted: Mar 15 2007, 01:02 PM by Plip | with 2 comment(s)
Filed under:
Vista a month on - how does it help the web developer?

Well, it's been over a month since I installed Vista on my shiny new(ish) Compaq nx9420.

My machine proports to be Windows Vista Capable (via a rather fetching sticker as shown below) so I had decided as soon as vista hit the retail market I would install  it.

I am a typical developer so my application usage revolves around a few applications (time spent comes from my timesheet logging application), here are my top 10: -

  1. VS.NET 2005 (26%)
  2. Outlook (15%)
  3. Internet Explorer (12%)
  4. Remote Desktop (8%)
  5. Sperical Timesheet Logger (5%)
  6. Word (5%)
  7. Excel (3%)
  8. SQL Server Management Studio (3%)
  9. Visio (2%)
  10. Trillian (2%)

The other 19% of stuff is gaming, meetings, other applications or being on the phone.

I think this is probably pretty average, these number have been drawn up since January 17th and cover all days (weekdays and weekends) between then and now.

So let's look at some of the above applications and see how the operating system has helped me out or changed the way I do things.

VS.NET (26% Total)

Running VS.NET on Vista to me is no different to running it on Windows XP, things are exactly the same, I use the built in Web Server and not IIS locally so I don't benefit from that, if anything VS.NET on Vista is a little less stable for me, occasionally it just locks up, something it never did on Windows XP (I'm yet to install the VS.NET Patch for Vista RTM, that may change things).

So are there any benefits I see from being on Vista right now when using VS.NET? Nope, I'm afraid it offers me nothing.

Microsoft Office 2007 (25% Total)

Now, I'm absolutley 100% in love with Office 2007, I could never ever go back to previous versions of Office, I love the Ribbon and the PDF addin also rocks, but how is it different on Vista to the experience I'd get on Windows XP? There's no difference at all, Vista does not offer me anything extra or anything better when using Office. The only thing Vista does give me which is realted to this are the "preview icons" in the Vista shell and the Desktop search which is integrated into the operating system, but that's not a big win, I could live without the preview icons or the desktop search.

Internet Explorer 7 (12%) 

No brainer, nothing special in Vista which is any different to the XP implementation. Considering the browser is where I spend a whopping 12% of my time it's really telling that I could go to XP and have the exact same experience.


I can go back to XP today without any loss in experience or productivity. I cannot however give up Office 2007.

What's your experiance been like?

Posted: Mar 11 2007, 05:23 PM by Plip | with 5 comment(s)
Filed under: , , ,
GPRS UK Networks - Shoddy at best

One of the clients I work for have hundreds of mobile devices around the UK all talking back to servers we manage. On Friday we noticed some odd gaps in data, esentially the GPRS network in the UK shut down, not on only one mobile provider but across at least three.

I've managed to work out that the following networks are interconnected somehow: -

  • O2
  • Orange
  • T-Mobile

Whereas Vodaphone doesn't appear to have been affected at all.

That's horrendous - the networks are supposed to be resilient, what's the point if they all use the same system?

Very very shoddy.

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