Windows 8 – Ramping Up for Another Beta Candidate

Here at Laplink we love new technology. As a software company it’s in our blood to be on the hunt for interesting or impactful developments in the tech world. And as a Gold-Certified partner of Microsoft, much of the software we create helps to better the experience users and businesses have with Microsoft products. Because of these two points we are very excited about Windows 8 and what it will mean to consumer’s world-wide. And if Windows 8 is doing anything, it’s generating some impactful discussion. Just check out this recent developer’s blog post regarding some recent UI changes. It’s more of a short-novel than a blog post, but interesting none-the-less.

We’re certainly getting closer to the rumored October release of Windows 8 (though nothing has been officially announced). In the next few weeks there is expected to be much more discussion regarding the final version and remaining beta candidates of Microsoft’s newest OS. Back in April we were told that the Windows 8 Release Preview would be landing in early June, and it just so happens that on June 6th Microsoft’s Steven Guggenheimer will be delivering a keynote address at Computex TAIPEI. Hopefully it will be here that we get a good preview or even a release announcement for the Release Preview of Windows 8.

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The Ease of PCmover

First off we’d like to thank everyone for their comments on our weekly prize post. You guys rock! The winners have been notified, but luckily there are still weeks more of prizes so don’t let up.

Photo courtesy of addictivetips.com

We here at Laplink just plain love good software. Finding (or in our case building) software that eliminates unnecessary headaches or confusion when interacting with your PC is our goal in life. For many years we’ve had our focus turned to PC migration. The transferring of files, settings and applications is what we know how to do better than anyone (humble, but true brag). Every once in a while though we want to give it up to those articles/bloggers out there who also give out a helping hand to users looking to avoid the pain and tedium of transferring to a new PC and/or OS.

Usman Javaid over at addictivetips.com wrote an article describing how to easily transfer files and settings using the native Windows Easy Transfer (or WET) utility on Windows. We really enjoyed the article as it helped give people an insight into what they might need to prepare for if they wish to upgrade to Windows 8. If you’re looking to upgrade to Win 8 or Win 7 for that matter, it gives a very detailed look at the WET option for transferring.

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“File Storage Device” Migration

We got a great question the other day on twitter from @jethrosan and had to share it with you. He asked the following:

We sure do, it can be done with PCmover® using the “File Storage Device” migration option. So, if you are wanting to conduct an in-place upgrade of your existing PC to a CLEAN install of Windows® 7 here are the steps to complete this type of migration:

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Disk Imaging Technology Timeline

Remember when making a back-up of your data meant calling in a scribe and dictating for hours to the rhythm of a quillquill scratching on parchment? Well. Maybe not. But imaging technology has come a long way since the dark ages of quill8-bit graphics and floppy disks. Evolving since the early 90s, disk imaging technology has made three prominent leaps of progress over the last two decades, resulting in the imaging software we’re familiar with today.

Join us now, won’t you, for a journey along the Disk Imaging Technology Timeline:

511076668_b651d4e444_tEarly to mid 90s: Disk imaging and cloning technology becomes readily available to consumers, but is fairly limited in function. Users may use software to create an image of their PC, but that image is tied to the computer – images can only be restored to the same PC. The process requires a large number of floppy disks; tempers flare. Continue reading

The Power of the Internet is Expanding

The internet: it is impossible to ignore and nearly impossible to avoid. As our world becomes more interconnected, our standards for information access and data sharing are steadily rising. No one wants to wait for hours to download files, or to share them between computers – we need our information now. And that is why the CRS-3 caught my attention.

Cisco CRS-3

Cisco CRS-3 (Credit: Cisco Systems)

On March 9th, Cisco introduced the CRS-3, a next generation internet router. The new router offers 12 times the traffic capacity of its predecessors, while handling 322 terabits of traffic per second. Now, don’t confuse this router with the one sitting below your desk; this router will be sold to the world’s largest internet providers (AT&T, Verizon, Level3, just to name a few) and will benefit high-speed internet users around the globe.

Although the incorporation of this new technology will occur relatively soon, you probably won’t notice much of a difference – the improvement is not intended to boost the general internet. However, it will boost a growing necessity: video. Continue reading

Laplink partnership with Enterprise Integration – Interview with COO Tracey Brown

Laplink Software, Inc. and Enterprise Integration, Inc. today officially announced a partnership to provide Windows 7 upgrade services to enterprise clients throughout North America. We sat down with Tracey Brown, Enterprise Integration’s Chief Operations Officer, to find out a little more about the obstacles his clients face everyday and what computing trends he sees in the future.picture_bio_tracybrown_lg

What is the background of Enterprise Integration [EI]?

“EI has a rich background from both a technology delivery and a technology training perspective. As a company we thrive on the “Raving Fan” brand of service where going above and beyond for our customers is first and foremost in our action and intent.  We started off as a small business with a very big client and were able to leverage lessons learned, create a solid vision and execute to share that knowledge across a much larger base of mid-sized clients.  We are a managed service provider for all of IT Operations, from Service Desk to Operations Architecture Strategy.  We are Gold Microsoft Partner, Platinum Citrix, Advanced Cisco, VM Ware Enterprise, Riverbed and Net App.” Continue reading

PCmover Image Assistant – Interview with CTO

Laplink CTO, Jack WilsonWe sat down with our Chief Technology Officer Jack Wilson and asked him what he thought were some of the most import features of the new and upcoming PCmover Image Assistant. Here’s what he said:

“Many times in the past people have contacted us saying that their computer died but they have an image of the hard drive – and how can the image be restored to a new PC.

“Often, this can’t be done easily. Even when the imaging software supports a “hardware independent” restore there can be problems. Sometimes it is because the computer is different or the image expects the hard drive to have the same format, partitions or size.  PCmover Image Assistant will give you complete independence by allowing the PC user to take a disk image (or even the actual hard drive itself) from any computer and restore it to any new computer, regardless of the hardware or the operating system on the new machine.” Continue reading

Windows 7 Adoption Moving Fast

Windows 7 adoption has been very strong. Below you can see how quickly the OS has been gaining share in its first few months compared to Windows Vista’s first few months according to Net Applications, a sales intelligence provider. Net Application compiles data from numerous different sources including people who visit their website as well statistics from their customers. According to their website, they track 160 million computer users per month. But with still almost 68 percent of us using XP, that’s 108,000,000 PCs, if you’re counting.

Operating System Market Share

 

 

December, 2009

 

OSgraph

Operating System

Total Market Share

Windows

92.21%

Mac

5.11%

Linux

1.02%

Java ME

0.53%

iPhone

0.44%

Symbian

0.23%

iPod Touch

0.09%

Windows Mobile

0.06%

Android

0.05%

Playstation

0.04%

BlackBerry

0.03%

FreeBSD

0.01%

Palm

0.01%

Nintendo Wii

0.01%

SunOS

0.01%

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PCsync Q&A with Laplink’s CTO

Q&A with Laplink’s Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Jack Wilson:Laplink CTO, Jack Wilson

What’s new with PCsync 6?

Of course the biggest change in PCsync is the ability to connect, transfer, and synchronize files with a Mac.  However there have also been many changes to PCsync to allow it to work faster and better than ever before between PCs.

What goes into the development of a product like PCsync?

What’s a typical day like in software development?  One of the biggest challenges in developing a software product like PCsync is ensuring the compatibility across the many different connection types (network, USB, and local devices), and the many combination of operating systems. For example, there are 6 versions of Windows 7, plus 32 bit and 64 bit versions. A lot of time was spent determining how best to communicate between the Mac file system and the PC. Modifying PCsync so the USB cables also worked on a Mac was also a challenge.  Not too many people realize the amount of testing involved in all that.

Who should buy PCsync?

Since PCsync can be used as both a file transfer and a synchronization product, anyone who is challenged by trying to connect and transfer files between PCs will love PCsync.  More and more users are confronted by this as having multiple PCs in the office or household is becoming more common.

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What is the real cost to migrate to Windows 7?

A recent study from Gartner suggested the cost to deploy Windows 7 across an organization running XP could be as much as $1930 per user. This figure may seem high but here are some items every organization should look at before migrating to a new operating system.

When we talk to most of our clients or prospective clients we break down our cost analysis into two separate categories.

  1. The real costs, which can be realized very easily. For instance, this would include cost to upgrade software to run on a new operating system or the cost to have technicians travel to a remote location and deploy new PCs in a remote office. Though these costs can be significant, these expenditures are often the only costs organizations will include in a cost analysis.
  2. In order to get a complete view of the costs it takes to migrate to new PCs or to a new operating system, organizations must also include cost that might not be as tangible. We refer to these as the “soft” costs of migrating to a new PC. These costs include loss of worker productivity because they didn’t save a file to the network before their PC was replaced or the opportunity costs for that technician to find the file for the end-user when they create a helpdesk ticket.

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