Monday, January 14, 2008

A Windows Shell Alternative for WIndows XP and Windows Vista: Cairo.

So what is Cairo you ask?  Cairo is a Windows Shell Alternative for better usability with Windows Xp and Windows Vista.  I am not going to mention a whole bunch about it and instead let you the reader go on to their website at:
One thing can be said just as it says on their website, Cairo will be sure to turn a few heads.

What you should know about a Vista-Ready Computer

Well now, my first blog!  Well what do I like to do?  I LOVE to build computers for other people becuase I believe it that buying from someone like Dell, HP, Asus, Acer, and others is a bad idea when it comes to saving money.  I respect those companies and all, but I think if you were to get a desktop, get someone to build it or build it yourself if you know how.

To begin let me just say that I support computer companies whenit comes to laptops because not many people can build their own laptop for it is very challenging.  I myself have a HP Pavilion dv9230us, which is a great laptop for big people like myself being 6' 2".  It is important to understand that there is a big difference between an apple computer and a PC computer.  In my honest opinion, I believe Macs are a PC because of course you may customize them but not as much as PCs.  I myself am a multi-user and that being said I support many Operating Systems such as any Linux Operating System running on a 2.6 Linux kernel.  I also enjoy using Windows Vista becuase on my laptop it is very stable.  I do enjoy using the Mac OS X 10.4.xx and 10.5.xx series as well.  Unfortunately, with certain computers these days it is hard for them to run Windows Vista because Windows Vista really does need a lot of resources to run smoothly and that is not a good trait for an Operating System to have.  In my opinion, a Windows Vista computer should have these specifications in order to run at a user-friendly speed for good use:

A motherboard @1066MHz FSB

1 Gigabyte of DDR2 RAM@800MHz

1.66GHz dualcore or 3.00GHz singlecore processor Intel/

A 256MB graphics card such as a nVidia 7 or 8 series if planning to run Windows Vista Basic/Aero theme

A 400Watt Power Supply

8x DVD drive (should be DVD burner in the computer to publish movies and etc.)

A 16-bit sound card (although I recommend a 24-bit soundcard for a optimal sound expeirence with your music, movies, and games)

USB compliant keyboard, mouse, and printer

A LCD monitor is recommended but not plasma because of the burn-in effects of a plasma monitor

So that about covers it, but I should explain somethings such as the RAM (Random Access Memory) because that can always vary for uses depending on the user.  So let me begin on that mumbo jumbo and such.  Lastly let me say if you are a gamer I will be working on a exclusive blog entry for extreme to insane gamers like myself.

If you plan to use your Vista-ready computer fopr music spend some money on a good sound card.  Vista does have some great new fancy confusing processes for the music nut in mind.  This process is called mfpmp.exe and what is that you ask?  Mfpmp.exe is a process that boosts the sound quality in Vista, just another audio process but way better than the one in Windows XP.  So if your using your Vista Computer to play music, use about 1 Gigabyte of RAM.  Also, to get into hard drive space, get a 100GB hard drive and that should cover it.  For a graphics card when using a computer for your music, get a simple 256MB graphics card such as a nVidia 7300GS or a 7600GT.  Now if you want a good visualization to go along with your music, try using Winamp by AOL and install a visualizer called Milkdrop.  A good processor would be a Intel Core 2 Duo @ 1.86GHz.  And of course a 24-bit sound card for crystal-clear quality music.  I will post many links later at the end.

Now if you want to watch movies through the all brand-new Windows Media Center included in Windows Vista Home Premium and Windows Vista Ultimate use about 2 Gigs of RAM, a 1.86GHz Intel Core 2 Duo.  Also use a 200GB hard drive for recording movies and also making them in the new Windows Movie Maker.  This will give you lots of space for years to come for your music, movies, games, and other media to come.

If you want a computer for just internet and office use here's some simple minimal specs for the office computer at your house or for the office.  A 128/256MB graphics card for graphs and charts when running Windows Basic or Aero, a 1.86MHz Intel Core 2 Duo, a 80GB/150GB hard drive, and 512MB-2GB of RAM.

By default, all of these computers should have a 1066MHz motherboard, minimal 400Watt Power Supply Unit (PSU), a 8x dvd drive, USB compliant keyboard, mouse and printer, and a LCD compact display that is at least a 17" widescreen monitor.

Links for some good hardware:

And of course where to get a program to make sure your current XP-based computer is ready to get an upgrade to Vista known as the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor 1.0:
and also for a hardware assessment: