The new media hub: The Readynas 516 first look

AsRN516_HiRes18-73225 more and more of my DVD and Blu-ray collection finds its way to my Readynas Ultra 4 running a PLEX server, I decided more power was needed. and the new Readynas 516 looked to be everything I needed. powerful CPU, ample space, and the possibility to extend the unit using eSATA if in the future 6 disks aren’t enough. Good cloud connections, integrated PLEX server, and my familiarity with Netgear Readynas products made the unit my first choice.

Receiving the unit, the hardware looked to be everything I hoped for. Good build quality, nice to look at on my desk, and the performance running everyday tasks like PLEX transcoding, phenomenal compared to the Ultra 4 plus.

However I do feel somewhat like a beta tester. The new Readynas OS6 looks sleek, and when it works, it is. However parts of the new OS, especially the Genie app store, and the OS add-on handling is bug ridden, requiring you to SSH into the box to do something as simple as updating the PLEX server.

Netgear seems to have done a good job on the hardware, but its new Firmware still needs a great deal of work. As I am used to the rather old faction Readynas OS4 running on the Ultra 4 it is a welcome change in terms of user friendliness, and technology. But the new firmware is miles behind when it comes to stability. Rest assure, Netgear will get there. The firmware is already version 6.0.7 after only a few months, showing signs of improvement. Give add-on developers some time as well, and my belive is that we will se a very successful and user friendly range of NASes from Netgear

Plex (software)
Plex (software) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Apple and iOS suddenly became relevant again

When it comes to Technology, I see myself as above average interested. That is also why, like my wife become feed up with looking at the same clothes in her wardrobe all the time, I get fed up at looking at my same home-screen andi icons all the time. My problem has up until now been that even though my old iPhone 4 gets the job done, and I have invested quite a bit of money into the platform, I am fed up with the way it looks, I am fed having to enter settings to turn on my Bluetooth.

I was so fed up, that i gave WP8 a test run, and even though a great system, it is for me still to immature, and I was missing features I am so used to on the iPhone, like quick scrolling to the top of a page. So I ended up back with Apple, but still bored.

Not any more. In my opinion, iOS 7 is from a design point of view, the perfect mix between WP8 and Android. Flat, but not boring, adaptable, but still user-friendly. The control centre solves my biggest problem with iOS the cumbersome access to often used settings, and the access to spotlight from any home screen is a fantastic move.

iCloud integration is better, but I still don’t think I will be using iCloud Key-chain as my main password manager, it’s just not flexible enough. Make an app that can extract the info from the key chain with a master password, then I might consider it. But for Wi-FI passwords and the likes. It’s fantastic.

OS X 10.9 is moving in a different direction than Microsoft. Apple are still focusing on the desktop, and even though I like Windows 8, in my opinion, a separate desktop os and a unified mobile os still works better than trying to do it all with one single OS.

Re enabeling Java in Safari

After Apple removed Java from OS X I have been struggling with Safari. Firefox works perfectly with Java, but when trying Safari the webpage just tells me that I don´t have Java installed.

What has happened is that after the 6.0.3 Safari update, Java has been inhibited. To solve this problem, visit http://www.java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp if the webpage says inactive just press the gray text to reenable Java problem solved.

Why Windows 8 is the best Windows around

win8 logo

Windows 8 is getting a lot of heat in the media. The last thing I read this morning was that Windows 8 was the reason for why computer sales have dropped. I disagree. There is no sole reason for the PC sales statistics, and if Windows 8 is a part of why PC sales are down, it is in my opinion not because of Windows 8, but because of media and bloggers have made a sport out of bashing Windows 8.

Windows 8 is often compared to Vista. Why. Because Vista was also a Windows OS, that didn’t catch on. But the reason the two OSes  don’t catch on is in my opinion vastly different. For anyone, who have tried the two OSes, know that they are both actually very good OSes, but they where the ones who made way for the next one.

Vistas biggest problem was the amount of resources it needed to run smoothly. In terms of safety, and features, it was way better than XP, but Vistas love for hogging up resources, was its downfall. That and the fact that a changed  way of makeing the drivers made a lot of people struggle because third-party drivers was non existent or badly programmed. When service pack 1 arrived Vista became a good OS, if you had the hardware to run it.

So Vistas problem can be easily identified, what then are Windows 8’s downfall.

Start ScreenWindows 8 is a great OS, it’s lightening fast. I perceive the interface, including the desktop app to be even faster than Windows 7. In terms of performance in games they seem to perform much the same as in Windows 7. Compatibility with older games is better than Win 7. Starcraft 1 for instance runs without a hitch, no color error, so often seen on windows 7 it just runs. The new start screen is fast, and searches are instant, much like Apples spotlight. What then is Windows 8’s problem. The problem is that people don’t like change, and stock Windows 8 demands one mouse click to be in your beloved desktop, this seems to be too much for most people reviewing computer software. But Windows 8 is giving you so much more, I must admit that I mostly use the desktop for work, but I also run Windows 8 on my media centre computer, and on this computer I never use the desktop, I only get a small glimpse of it before the PLEX splash screen. Netflix, YouTube, Web TV, it all run from the Windows 8 style start screen, and the beauty of it, my 4-year-old daughter can now move the mouse to one of the big icons, press the button once, try making a child do a double click, and start her favorite video on YouTube. I love it. and it wouldn’t be possible on a windows 7 pc. I do not miss the start menu, the start screen work just as well. And if you miss it, install Start 8

Windows 8 has all the features of a full-blown Desktop os, and all the features of a tablet, I don’t know how you can’t love that. And the beauty of windows, if you want it too look the same as it always has, you can, just tweak it.

One thing though, Microsoft are you listening. When installing the OS, I want a selection of what I want to run as default programs, on my work computer. I don’t want the Windows 8 style apps to be my default apps, I don’t want to leave my desktop when clicking an image in file explorer. What about a choise when installing, what will be tha main use of this computer. Work emphasizes on the desktop, Media emphasize on the Windows 8 style apps, and for the advanced user, choose what to use as default programs.

 

Bottom line, if you want a better OS, choose Windows 8, accept it as it is, or tweet it, your choice, but it is the best windows OS available.