Microsoft’s “Ultimate Steal” offer comes to the UK

September 17th, 2008

A student in the UK? Want a chance to get your hands on a cheap copy of Microsoft Office/Vista? Read on!

Microsoft are offering Office Ultimate 2007 for £38.95, which is as close as you’ll get to the $60 they were offering for North America. Considering university starts for most people this or next week, you may be best of taking the opportunity to buy so you’re set for the new academic year.

Provided you have a ac.uk, ac.im, ac.gg, or ac.je email address (UK, Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey) then you should be valid for the offer.

Great deal!

PC Decrapifier 2.0 released

September 15th, 2008

If you've just bought a new PC and it's come loaded with all sorts of trial crap (collectively known as crapware), of you are the kind of person that others ask to sort out their PCs, then you're going to want to check this out.

PC Decrapifier 2.0 has been released. This is compatible with both Windows XP and Vista. This tool will scan a PC and remove the most commonly applied crapware applications loaded onto new PCs by OEMs.

Pcdecrapifier20_15-09-2008 23-06-41

Here is a complete list of crapware uninstalled by PC Decrapifier 2.0.

Great bit of kit. Free to non-commercial users.

iTunes 8 BSOD update

September 12th, 2008

This post is a follow-up to a post I made the other day called "iTunes 8 throwing a BSOD when you hook up your iPhone/iPod?"

Thanks to Ed Bott for noticing that Apple has acknowledged this problem, posted instructions on how to fix it and released and updated version of iTunes 8 which can be downloaded as normal.

Annoyingly, the update isn't being pushed to all iTunes 8 users (in other words, iTunes doesn't notify you that there's an update available) and if you are affected by the problem you're going to need to do some manual uninstalling.

No, a nuclear power station hasn’t blown up in the UK

September 11th, 2008

If you get an email which looks like the following claiming that a nuclear power station has exploded in the UK, that the authorities are covering it up and a big radiation cloud is headed for the US, just bin it. Why? Because no nuclear power station has blown up and it's nothing more than a trick used by spammers to get you to open the attachment.

No, a nuclear power station hasn't blown up in the UK

Here's what security company Sophos has to say about this.

iTunes 8 throwing a BSOD when you hook up your iPhone/iPod?

September 11th, 2008

Have you upgraded to iTunes 8 only to find that your system crashes when you hook up your iPhone/iPod to your (Vista) PC? If this is the case, read on!

After a lot of hassle, I finally managed to get iTunes 8 to BSOD on a system I have here at the PC Doc HQ. Oddly enough I can only get it to happen on the Phenom system I have, but that's good enough for me to test out a fix.

  1. Disconnect the iPod/iPhone and reboot the system.
  2. Click Start > Control Panel and under the entry for Programs click Uninstall a program
  3. Now select Apple Mobile Device Support and click Uninstall. When finished close Control Panel.
  4. Download iTunes 7.7.
  5. Use a file unzip tool such as 7-Zip or WinRAR to open the iTunes 7.7 iTunesSetup.exe archive you just downloaded.
  6. Extract the file AppleMobileDeviceSupport.msi from the archive into a convenient location (such as your desktop).
  7. Double-click on AppleMobileDeviceSupport.msi to install it.
  8. When the install process is over, try reconnecting your iPod/iPhone.

Alternatively, you might just decide that iTunes 8 is too much of a hassle and wait for an update that fixes this issue. If you do, and you try to roll back to iTunes 7.7 you may get a message telling you that "The file 'iTunes Library.itl' cannot be read because it was created by a newer version of iTunes." If you get this, try the following:

  • Close iTunes.
  • Find the file iTunes Library.itl - this should be in your C:\Users\username\Music folder.
  • Open the file with Notepad, delete the contents and save it blank.
  • Restart iTunes. The file will be rebuilt.

Hope this helps!