Month: June 2011

Just a Plug

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I’ve known about but shied away from powerline-based adapters in the past. Working in data centers on a routine basis, I’m used to CAT5/6 whenever possible, and wireless second. Having just moved into a new house with enough free space in the garage for a lab setup, I wanted to extend my network without playing the roll-your-own cable game, and stressing my knees while drilling holes, so I decided to test out the ZyXEL HomePlug Powerline adapter.

Have to say that I was impressed at how simple setup was, just connect one adapter w/LAN cable into my core switch, install the other adapter into outlet in the garage and was online in no time. There is an encryption feature too, though I probably won’t be using it. The marketed speed is 200 Mbps which I have not yet tested, however speed tests through my ISP (Verizon FiOS) to the Internet were comparable to wired connections.

Going all in on Windows 7…

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Have decided to finally follow through with much-needed OS updates throughout the home network. My primary home PC, a Dell Inspiron 1525 laptop from about 3 years ago, is still running Vista dual-boot with Ubuntu Linux (8.04) . After completing my 24×7 Ubuntu desktop experiment early last year, and seeing more and more recent symptoms of Vista nastiness…inevitable Windoze slowdowns, occasional blue screens (USB) and delays in sleeping and waking up, it’s time to upgrade!

I’ve been generally impressed with Windows 7 stability through heavy usage on daily workstations, primarily Dell laptops, and have come to appreciate little improvements like the multi-windowing taskbar.

Am waiting for my Windows 7 Home 3-pack upgrade  from Amazon, which should come also in handy for upgrading my music workstations. I need maximum compatibility for devices like USB digital audio and MIDI controller, plus I already have ProTools M-Powered for PC. In the meantime, need to finish researching sound-proofed PC cases like this one from Antec, and then will be ready to build an ultra-quiet machine possibly with SSD. But more on that in the future-