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Posts Tagged ‘windows 7’

connect your laptop to your TV

December 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Problem
You want to connect your laptop to your TV. For instance you have Netflix / HBO GO / etc. subscription and you want to watch movies on a bigger screen.

Story time
We have an old LG HD-ready television (32LG3000) whose resolution is 1366×768. I had an old (and small) laptop connected to the TV via a VGA cable that worked well with movies (avi, mp4, etc.). This laptop had Manjaro on it and its resolution was 1024×768. When it was connected to the TV, the screen was cloned and the TV also had the same resolution. The image quality was very good. However, this laptop was weak for videos running in the browser, so for instance I couldn’t watch Youtube videos in full screen.

A few days ago I decided to try HBO GO. It’s similar to Netflix. It’s not expensive (7.66 USD/month), the first month is free, and you can cancel it any time. It was clear that my old laptop won’t be enough for this.

I tried another laptop, a Toshiba C55 that has a VGA and an HDMI output too. Strangely, the VGA output was not recognized by my TV, so I couldn’t use it. And when I tried HDMI, the image quality was shit. The colors were terrible and the image was blurred. The text on the screen was ugly and the whole thing looked pixelated. I tried every resolution, but it was the same shit :( I even changed the HDMI cable to a gold-plated one. Nothing. With a software I could adjust the colors but I wasn’t satisfied with the colors at all.

Solution
I don’t know the exact reason of the problem. Maybe our TV is old, maybe a full-HD TV would be better, who knows… It was clear that there is something wrong with the HDMI connection.

So, let’s get back to VGA. I had yet another laptop, a Dell Vostro 2510 (also old). It worked well for me and it only had a VGA output. I installed Windows 7 on it, connected to the TV, but the TV only showed a black screen. And when I changed the resolution down to 1024×768, the screen appeared on the TV! Yes! And the quality was good! Later I figured out that the resolution 1280×720 was even better for this TV. This laptop is sufficient for videos running in a browser. It took me 3 days to find the best solution…

I also made some experiments. With VGA, I tried different resolutions, but they looked ugly. The result was similar to the HDMI. However, 1024×768 and 1280×720 were good. Then I tried HDMI again with these two resolutions and they were ugly again. I don’t get it but fine…

TL;DR: Via VGA I got better quality on the TV. On the laptop I put Windows 7. The resolution 1280×720 worked well. HDMI produced shit quality but I couldn’t figure out why. I’ll stay with VGA.

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[windows 7] unauthorized changes on the firmware, operating system, or UEFI drivers

September 25, 2017 Leave a comment

Problem
A friend called me last week that he has a problem with his PC. He has Windows 7 and after installing some updates, the system couldn’t reboot. He got the following error message:

(Screenshot from here.)

Solution
I found the solution here. In a nutshell: enter BIOS -> Boot -> Secure Boot. Next to “OS Type” you must have Windows. Change it to “Other OS”. Save and reboot.

Categories: windows Tags: , , , ,

How to update Windows 7 SP1

June 13, 2016 Leave a comment

Problem
A friend of mine asked me to install Windows 7 on his laptop. I installed Windows 7 SP1, but something changed because when I tried to search for updates, it didn’t want to finish! I waited for 12 hours but it was still looking for… Damn, how to do an update?

Solution
Download manually these updates: KB3050265, KB3102810, and KB3125574 (this last one is a big one, a convenience rollup update). Do the following with each update:

  • Start an admin terminal and stop the Windows Update service: “net stop wuauserv”.
  • Install the update. Restart the machine if you are asked to.
  • Take the next update and repeat.

There is no need to restart the WU service manually since it is started automatically after a reboot.

When these three updates are installed, the Windows Update will find the updates “quickly” (“quicly” is relative; for me it was about 15 minutes).

playing Heroes 3 under Linux

October 29, 2015 Leave a comment

I don’t play much but a few days ago I decided to play with Heroes 3 again. GOG.com offers the complete package for less than $10. There is a new HD version but the critics are not very good. Everyone says that the original is much better.

I tried it with Wine and I could install it without any problems. The game worked well for 10 minutes, but then I couldn’t click on some buttons, there was a problem with the mouse handling, so the game became unplayable.

I have dual-boot on my machine but I didn’t want to restart it each time I wanted to play this game. But I also had a Windows 7 in VirtualBox. I use that for work, so I didn’t want to pollute it with games. So I made a linked clone about this virtual machine. It means that the linked clone requires the original image and it only registers the differences. Thus, a linked clone doesn’t require much space. In this linked clone I installed Heroes 3 and it was playable. However, there were some problems with the resolution. The game has a fixed resolution of 800 x 600, so it started in a small area. I wanted to stretch it to fullscreen, so switched on the “Scale Mode” under the “View” menu point of VirtualBox. It was fine on one of my machines, but on another one it bacame terribly pixelated. Upgrading VirtualBox from version 5.0.0 to 5.0.8 solved this issue.

Summary: I can play Heroes 3 again under Linux using VirtualBox. The resolution of Windows is set to 800 x 600 and “Scaled Mode” is activated in VirtualBox.

Links

Categories: games Tags: , , , ,

I switched to Manjaro Linux on my main machine

August 6, 2015 1 comment

I bought an SSD and installed it last week in my main machine at home. I had Ubuntu 12.04 LTS on it before but I decided to put Manjaro on the new drive. Why the switch?

As I have several machines to maintain, a few years ago I decided to only use LTS releases of Ubuntu. I was fed up with installing new releases on about 8 machines in every 6 months. With the LTS everything is peaceful for 2 years :) However it also means that I don’t get the hot stuff, I need to wait for the next LTS release.

I met Manjaro less than a year ago when I installed it on an older laptop of mine. I played with it and it turned out to be a very nice system. It has several advantages:

  • It is based on Arch, but much easier to install. The relation between Arch and Manjaro is somewhat similar to Debian and Ubuntu.
  • Manjaro uses a rolling release model, which means a continually developing software system. In the case of Ubuntu when a new release comes out, you need to reinstall it over the previous version. Rolling software, instead, is continually updated, in contrast to standard release software which is upgraded between versions. (source) Thus, you install Manjaro once and you are done. Just update it regularly and you have an up-to-date system. When a new release comes out, you have nothing to do. Thanks to the regular updates you have the latest version.
  • Its package manager is very easy to use. For instance, it’s enough to execute “yaourt -Syua” to keep my system updated.
  • The AUR (Arch User Repository) is a community-driven software repository. It is similar to Ubuntu’s PPA but much easier to use. Just select a package and install it with a command. PPAs need to be imported first.
  • Fast, easy to install, easy to use. I also have Windows 7 on my machine but its installation with all the updates took almost a day. Manjaro and its updates were installed in 30 minutes. Windows 7 occupies 40 GB after a clean install. Manjaro needs about 7 GB. Since last week I’ve installed several other softwares but its size is still 14 GB.

It took me a few days to configure everything, but now I can do anything that I could do with Ubuntu.

The blog will go on under the same name (“The Ubuntu Incident”), don’t worry. I still use Ubuntu at my workplace for instance :) But expect more posts on Manjaro in the future.

Categories: linux Tags: , , ,

Remove arrows from desktop icons (Windows 7)

September 11, 2012 Leave a comment

To get rid of the arrows on the desktop icons in Windows 7, use the Ultimate Windows Tweaker.

Auto Login to Windows 7

August 8, 2012 Leave a comment

Problem
I have a Windows 7 in VirtualBox. When I launch it, I don’t want to spend time with logging in. How to skip this step?

Solution
I found the solution here.

In short: launch netplwiz, in the Users tab, uncheck the box next to “Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer”, press Apply, provide the password, then OK, OK.

Categories: windows Tags: ,