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I have recently assembled a new desktop, and after a while, I started to experience VPU recover issues in a certain game. Let me start with my computer specs first:  Asus P5Q Deluxe motherboard, Kingston Hyperx 2x 1 gb RAM 1066 MHz (KHX8500D2/1G), Intel Core2 Duo E8500 CPU, and a HIS HD4850 IceQ4, and all of these backed by a OCZ 500W Modxstream PSU (doesn’t beat my previous Enermax Liberty, but I can’t be bothered with removing it from my previous desktop now) in a Enermax Chakra case.

Before I start, I must say I am not completely an expert on the subject though I’m quite experienced with such issues.  So, I might neglect some aspects when writing this. While most of these information here is already available on the web, it is mostly scattered among pages and they might be hard to reach with improper keywords. But still, let’s get started:

So, what is VPU recover? It is a feature in ATI software that let’s the GPU (graphics processing unit) to restart itself when it faces a problem and stops responding that would otherwise freeze the computer if it didn’t restart. So, if you don’t have this selected in your Catalyst Control Center settings, then your PC is likely to freeze with a blank screen. First of all, this isn’t an error itself; rather the outcome of an error that has occured. VPU Recover let’s you continue your work without causing you lose the work you are working on, or whatever.

Then, what causes the GPU to stop responding? There might be a couple of reasons. The generic reply you will get from ATI/AMD is the following:
» Read the rest of the entry..

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When I turn my personal computer (a desk-top IBM-compatible) on, it makes a little sound. This little sound I sometimes playfully interpret as a cheerful ‘Good morning’ greeting, for the action of bringing my computer to life usually happens first thing in the morning, when I sit down at my desk, a cup of tea at my side, to begin the day’s work. In conjunction with my cup of tea, the sound helps to prepare me emotionally and physically for the working day ahead, a day that will involve much tapping on the computer keyboard and staring into the pale blue face of the display monitor, when not reading or looking out the window in the search for inspiration. I am face-to-face with my computer for far longer than I look into any human face. I don’t have a name for my personal computer, nor do I ascribe it a gender (although I know some people do; see, for example, Stone, 1992:81). However, I do have an emotional relationship with the computer, which usually makes itself overtly known when something goes wrong. Like most other computer users, I have experienced impatience, anger, panic, anxiety and frustration when my computer does not do what I want it to, or breaks down. I have experienced files that have been lost, printers failing to work, the display monitor losing its colour, disks that can’t be read, a computer virus, a breakdown in the system that stopped me using the computer or email. I live in fear that a power surge will short-circuit my computer, wiping the hard disk, or that the computer will be stolen, and I assiduously make back-up copies of my files. For some years now (since I first learnt how to use word-processing package in 1986), I have relied on computers to write. I have written whole articles and books without printing out a hard copy until the penultimate draft. I cannot imagine how it must have been in the ‘dark ages’ when people had to write PhDs and books without using a computer. I can type much faster than I write with a pen. A pen now feels strange, awkward and slow in my hand, compared to using a keyboard. When I type, the words appear on the screen almost as fast as I formulate them in my head. There is for me, a seamless transition of thought to word on the screen.

from; Lupton, Deborah.  “The Embodied Computer/User.”  Cyberspace/Cyberbodies/Cyberpunk: Cultures of Technological Embodiment.  Eds. Mike Featherstone and Roger Burrows.  London: Sage, 1995.  97-112.

Christmas Back Home - xkcd

A tribute to Damla’s post titled “annum novum faustum” on Facebook (too bad she no longer blogs). This is named Christmas Back Home from xkcd.

I have been looking for an easy and fast way to convert the Ape and FLAC files (aka Monkey’s Audio files) with cue sheets I have to a format that I could use for portable music players. Ok, we all love Ape and FLAC because they boast the best sound quality with lossless or lossy compression, but support for them on portable music players seems hard at this time because of the file size they have and the processing power they need.

The common sense way I have come across on the net is: First, decompress the ape file to wave, any audio convertor should be able to do this. Change the .ape extention to .wav inside the .cue file. Recompress it to MP3, split to individual files (or first split, then compress). But I don’t find this a nice way as the I don’t really want to play with gaps, etc. Ok, Cue Splitter software can remove/add gaps but I prefer to do it naturally.

Or, there are software like Ape Ripper, which can convert your ape files to MP3. But then, it doesn’t allow you to pick a specific encoder, like LAME.

So, what I did was: I first looked for an ape plugin for Nero Burning Rom, and found one here – They have plugins based on the official releases by Monkey’s Audio, FLAC or any other format, so it offers the best quality around. Installed the plugin, and boom! Now, Nero can read and write ape files. Then, I chose Nero’s Image Recorder as the recorder, so I can get a .nrg image file. Just use the Burn Image option and pick the cue file, and it will write it as a .nrg image. Afterwards, I used Daemon Tools (or any other similar software) to mount the .nrg image file so I can rip it with any software I want.

This way, you can use EAC and LAME couple to make your portable music files sound a little better with right settings, or you can directly use the CD rippers of iTunes or SonicStage. Also, your mounted image file will (most probably – all of mine have been found) be found on freedb or Gracenote/CDDB, so you won’t spend extra time with tagging. Depending on the compression settings and your cpu, this should take you a maximum of five minutes to get all these done.

Conceptronic CHD3Lan Network Harddisk Landrive Case on the standI had getting a landrive in my mind for a while. When I saw a great bargain on a website a few days ago, I couldn’t resist and placed my order to get Conceptronic CHD3Lan. I received the unit today and wanted to share my experience with it. This is not really a review. More like a photo-review, where you can see what’s inside the device and some details you might not be able to find at other places. Feel free to ask though through comments though.

The drive has USB 2.0 and 100 Mbit fast ethernet connectivity and uses 2882 chipset. What makes the drive great is the built-in FTP and Samba server. So, your files are always accessible not only from your network but also anywhere on the net. The drive uses IDE ATA 133 drives, which I had one spare. After I placed and connected the harddisk, I just (not really just, continue to read) plugged the device to my router with the provided network cable, played with the settings.

In the meanwhile, I wanted to upgrade the firmware of the device but had a problem – familiar firmware upgrade failure, which was my bad. I thought I messed up my landrive that I just bought, but then I found a very easy solution to that. See this page for the solution in case you experience the same. You can also check here for additional files, etc by the same guy.

Though I haven’t tested the Landrive (performance, stability, etc) yet, I didn’t like one thing. This thing has a very noisy 3 cm-ish fan, which doesn’t apparently do much. So, I first unplugged the power cable, then decided to remove the fan to increase air intake a little more. I’m not sure how much the board gets hot but I know the harddisk doesn’t need extra cooling. And, after all, it’s winter now and it shouldn’t really be a problem. Anyway, the box is made up of metal (I think aluminnium) and looks pretty neat (at least it’s not ugly). Another thing that’s handy for me is, my router (which is also an ADSL modem, US Robotics 9106) can use a couple of dynamic DNS sites. In other words, I got a hostname to fix my non-static IP that keeps changing each time my DSL connection resets. This helps my files be accessible everytime I need them. As for the web interface, it’s pretty easy to use. You can check the manual on the downloads section of the official page to see the interface.

Here are some pictures:

Back of the device, not “disassembled,” with the stand Ethernet, USB, Power connectors, LEDs, On/Off button and reset button The board and RDC 2882 chipset

IDE and power cables Fan power cable unplugged The Nasty Fan

Copy Control LogoI just ‘remembered’ this band Ultravox and realized I haven’t listened to them for a while now. I have their The Best of Ultravox album and I wanted to rip the CD so I could listen it on my computer and portable music player. But what the heck? It has copy protection.

I am not that respectful to copyrights and all, and I greatly dislike these kind of efforts as they can never make an ultimate copy protection that won’t be cracked at all. There is this wonderful phrase by a ‘crack’ scene, something like “if man made it, man can also crack it.” Additionally, I find these kind of efforts as limiting. Basically, what they do is to have two sessions on the CD (one data and one for audio). Anyways, I tried to use the awesome CD ripper software EAC (ExactAudioCopy) but it kept gaving errors. I tried some other software like Sony Sonicstage, Nero, etc with no success.

However, as I said, you can never make an ultimate copy protection. What you do is to extract the audio data to your harddisk using Isobuster. Then you get the uncompressed audio files in wave format. All you need to do now is to compress them into MP3 or whatever with your favorite encoder. You can also find some detailed explanation here.

Ok… I’ve been planning on transferring all my archive on CD’s and DVD’s to my harddisk for easier access and for safety (as those media don’t have much lifespan).

The internal capacity of my computer wasn’t helping so I needed a new hard disk. After some research, I went ahead and bought this external drive.  I came home with the drive, set it up and started transferring files. System hang… Ok, I reset and start again. Another hang. Is something wrong with the drive? So I did a slow format, etc. Again, another Windows freeze.

Then I remembered that there was a new BIOS for my mobo: “Fixed an issue where the system sometimes hangs when copying large files.” This might fix… So I made a backup of my current bios and then on with the update process. The ABIT online BIOS updater software was supposed to clear CMOS. I restarted the computer after update process.

WTF? No signal coming to my screen – computer isn’t booting! “Ok, take it easy…” Cleared CMOS and was able to boot finally. I loaded my previous settings that were saved to BIOS. No luck with the boot again. Recleared CMOS, changed some settings, and reboot.. Ok, everything seems fine.. What the heck? Ah, forgot to reset my RAID0 settings, so going back to BIOS. Uh, won’t boot again (because BIOS updated DMI? settings…).

So I clear CMOS again, unplug all the drives other than the RAID0 ones. Make all settings manually again (damn, that’s a lot of tuning). And it finally boots… And no more hangs while copying hitloads of files to the external drive.

God, I hate so much when the computer creates some stupid problem…

By the way, the drive seems to work fine and has satisfactory performance for a USB drive.

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Bilgisayar dergileriyle aram yoktur hiç. Yıllardır aynı terane: Windows 98’inizi bedavaya XP gibi gösterin; yok bedava apgreyd edin vs vs.

İçi boş dergiler hepsi. Ara sıra canım sıkılınca 15 dakika kurcalamak için alır, sonra nereye koyduğumu unuturum. Pc Labs sitesinin blog’una Ahmet bununla ilgili benzer bir yazı yazmış, ve yıllar öncesinin bir Türk oyun programcısıyla röportaj yapılan bir yerin bağlantısını vermiş.

İlginç ve güzel bir röportaj. İlgili ilgisiz herkes okuyabilir.

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Sabit diskler, gelişen bilgisayar teknolojilerinde geride kalan parçalar. Bu yüzden şu anda bilgisayarları gerçekten yavaşlatan tek parça durumunda neredeyse. Birkaç yıl önce NCQ (native command queueing) duyurulmuştu ve bu sayede sabit diskler bir miktar performans kazanmışlardı. Bundan önce ise daha hızlı arabirim (ATA33-66-100-133, SATA vs) dışında bir yenilik göremiyorduk. Elbette RAID ile kayda değer performans artışı sağlanmıştı. Ancak sıradan kullanıcıların evine henüz giremedi.
Seagate bu sabit diskinde yeni bir teknoloji olan ‘dikey kayıt’ı kullanmış. Bu ürünü DarkHardware incelemiş. Biraz önce gördüm, tek diskli performansta oldukça artış sağlanmış. Bir de 7200 devir yerine 10.000 devir olsa neler yapardı kim bilir.

İnceleme burada.

mumblings on life, literature, computers, media, whining, university life, movies, poetry, music, internet, procrastination, technology, media, horror, gender, blogging, concerts, film studies, wordpress, sexuality, vegetarianism, ideology, i greatly dislike sugar in my coffee, and all other unnecessary crap you would otherwise ignore.