Archive for July, 2008

I’ve always been a fan of Mini ITX, but up to now I don’t still own one… hehehe… just to give you updates I found these articles…

Mini-ITX 2.0: The Mini PC Platform of the Future

After inventing the form factor in 2001, VIA has redefined the platform in 2008 to create a new standard for optimized performance and freedom of choice in small form factor desktop PCs.

Today’s Mini-ITX mainboards have come a long way in seven years, with faster processor speeds yet more power efficient platforms than ever, richer digital media feature integration, and greater connectivity and storage options. VIA boards now feature PCI Express, DDR2, SATA II, multi-channel HD audio and much more, and VIA is continually investing resources in developing ways to integrate ever greater functionality into small footprint platforms.

To extend its leadership at the cutting edge of small form factor innovation, VIA announced Mini-ITX 2.0, setting a minimum standard of the latest PC technology specifications for Mini-ITX mainboards designed for small form factor desktop PCs. This is aimed at providing OEMs, system integrators and end-users alike greater freedom of choice in configuring mini PCs and home media centers to deliver the graphics, high definition video, and computing experience required in today’s media rich environment.

Mini-ITX is the ideal platform for next generation mini PCs due to its advanced performance, high levels of feature integration, and easy expandability, coupled with the broad infrastructure of cases and accessories that has been built up around the form factor.

Processor: Central to Mini-ITX 2.0 is a high performance yet power efficient x86 processor, such as the VIA Nano processor, to provide all the horsepower necessary for running the latest applications and operating systems in a space-constrained environment.

Graphics & Video: Increasingly immersive graphics and high definition visual computing are demanding ever more powerful graphics and video, including DirectX® 10 graphics and Blu-ray Disc™ playback. Mini-ITX 2.0 defines a 16-lane PCI Express slot as a prerequisite, enabling the integration of a high performance graphics add-in card into the system in order to play the latest, most sophisticated PC games and highest density video formats.

Audio: With PCs increasingly used as home media centers, it is vital for mini PCs to deliver rich 6-channel surround sound that meets the HD audio specification, for a more authentic entertainment experience.

==============================================

Mini-ITX 2.0 Standard

The Mini-ITX 2.0 open industry standard defines minimum platform technology requirements for media-rich optimized mini PCs:

Processor: High-performance, power efficient x86 processor, such as the VIA Nano processor

Memory: Support for minimum 2GB DDR2 SDRAM
Graphics: DirectX 9.0 integrated (IGP); DirectX 10 through an add-in card

Display: 1 VGA port for LCD display; 1 HDMI port on add-in card

HD Audio: 3 Audio jacks for up to 6-channel surround sound
Broadband Connectivity: 1 Gigabit LAN port

Storage: 2 Serial ATA II slots + 1 IDE (PATA) slot
Peripheral Connectivity: Minimum 4 USB2.0 ports

Expansion: 1 PCI Express 16-lane slot

Size: 17cm x 17cm

O/S Support: Microsoft® Windows Vista®; Microsoft Windows Vista Premium (through an add-in graphics card); Microsoft Windows® XP, and major Linux distributions such as Ubuntu, Suse Linux and gOS

Please download the presentation from the VIA press conference held during Computex Taipei 2008, in which the Mini-ITX 2.0 concept was introduced after an explanation of VIA’s path to the VIA Nano processor.

Heres the link: http://www.via.com.tw/en/downloads/presentations/events/computex08/VIA_PressConf_Mini-ITX2-0_080605.pdf

Advertisements

While we’re sad to see Windows XP go, a look back shows it hit its fair share of speed bumps since its 2001 launch.

Sure, now that we’ve hit the official Windows XP end of life, all some of us want is just one day more with the OS. (Only Vista now? Oh no!) But that wasn’t always the case. Yes, XP never took the blows that Vista has, but there were times when it was touch-and-go. From the first betas of XP, PC Magazine experts saw both good and bad in the OS; it had the stability of Windows 2000 and the gaming ability of ME and 98, but it wasn’t quite ready for enterprise or small-business use right out of the gate.

And, as is customary, as more of us got our hands dirty tweaking and configuring the OS—networking and troubleshooting, for example—we encountered snafus of all kinds and many more blue screens than we would have liked.

Minds have changed now, though. More than a year post-Vista, many have found themselves clinging to XP (despite its faults), finding loopholes that will allow its life to continue beyond June 30. How did it come to this?

XP: A Wake Up Call for Windows
(March 30, 2001)
“Windows XP [beta 2] is certainly not perfect, but we did find it surprisingly stable and easy-to-use. We found the new look refreshing… Experienced Windows users, however, will notice that some tasks have gotten easier while others have become more difficult.”

Windows XP: Worth the Wait?
(May 8, 2001)
“I’ve had a chance to run the second beta version of Windows XP over the past few weeks, and I’m glad to report that this is the Microsoft operating system I’ve been waiting for all these years.”

XP: Big Steps for Windows, Small Steps for Office
(May 8, 2001)
“Microsoft plans for the Professional version…to include features designed for the small-business or corporate user. These include additional networking capabilities, corporate security through domain authorization, group policy support, increased mobile computing support and file management, and support for dual monitors and dual processors.”

Windows XP to Rock!
(August 30, 2001)
“I’m not absolutely sure that the entire U.S. economy is going to get cranked up because of Windows XP, but one thing is certain: The product is going to put some life into the ailing PC market and make a difference.”

Microsoft Ships Its Biggest OS Upgrade Ever—Early!
(September 3, 2001)
“So should you upgrade your systems? Our answer is a qualified yes. Die-hard DOS gamers and businesses that use a custom DOS-based application will want to think twice… But for the vast majority of users, the added stability of Windows XP should be a real draw. And the host of features are the icing on the cake.”

The New Windows: Great Xpectations
(October 30, 2001)
“Windows XP combines Windows 98’s and Me’s aptitude for running games and legacy hardware with Windows 2000’s more stable and manageable kernel. Microsoft is positioning Windows XP Home Edition as its most important consumer upgrade since Windows 95.”

The XPerience Continues
(May 13, 2002)
“…when Windows 2000 has problems like the ones I had with Windows XP [networking troubles and repeated blue screens], trying to solve the problems gets much nastier, in my experience.”

Teaching Windows XP to Share, Part 1
(April 26, 2002)
“If I can’t figure out how to share Internet access between two PCs using Windows XP (and I have the resources of PC Magazine), then how are the rest of the newbies out there faring?”

Teaching Windows to Share, Part II
(October 18, 2002)
“I purchased a wireless cable/DSL router for my home…You know that establishing shared online access throughout my home has been a long-term goal for me. Well, I’m pleased to say that I have achieved my goal. So that’s it, right? End of column. Not exactly.”

The Fog of XP
(August 6, 2003)
“I fear that my system is a ticking time bomb waiting for the worst possible moment to go blue-screen again. The XP fog has settled in like an unwelcome guest. I wonder if it ever will leave.”

Windows XP Outsells Vista
(February 15, 2007)
“Windows Vista unit sales decreased 58.9 percent in units compared to Windows XP during their respective launch weeks, while revenue decreased 32.1 percent.”

Windows XP SP3 beta
(October 17, 2007)
“There’s very little new here, but SP3 increases security and collects all those hundreds of hotfixes you might have been too busy (or cautious) to keep downloading.”

Windows XP: Still the One
(October 31, 2007)
“We’ve all got a love-hate relationship with XP, but it’s the only PC OS that can satisfy 100 percent of the people, 100 percent of the time.”

Microsoft Extends Windows XP Availability
(April 3, 2008)
“Microsoft announced on Thursday [April 3, 2008] that it will continue making Windows XP Home Edition available until at least June 2010 on ultra-low-cost PCs (ULCPC), such as the ASUS Eee.”

New Life for Windows XP
(April 4, 2008)
“Recently, there have been many reports about Microsoft extending the life of Windows XP—yet again—in order to support the new ultra-low-cost (ULC) laptops.”

Don’t Panic: You Can Still Buy Windows XP After June 30
(June 24, 2008)
“It’s officially official: Windows XP will go the way of the dodo on June 30. But you’ll still be able to buy it in a few places, using a loophole that allows sales to continue to original equipment manufacturers, or OEMs.”