The TR Podcast 46: The Google OS, browser wars, and all things storage


Plus classic games come to Steam, OCing stories from the front lines, and more
— 4:43 PM on July 12, 2009

The Tech Report Podcast Date: July 12, 2009
Time: 2:10:00

Hosted by Jordan Drake
Co-Hosts: Scott Wasson, Geoff Gasior, Cyril Kowaliski, Matt Butrovich
Special guest: Gautam Bhatnagar
Listen now:
Download: MP3 (83.9MB) | M4A (92.6MB)

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Sponsored by MSI's Master Overclocking Arena 2009. North American overclockers can join Phase One of the tournament between June 29 and July 19. The top two overclockers will get to compete with international heavyweights at the finals in Beijing on August 29. The 25th entry to the competition automatically receives a free MSI x58M motherboard! Visit the official website or follow TR's sponsored coverage for more.

Show notes
This week's episode starts off with a bang. Damage Labs adds a new member to the team, and Scott and Jordan discuss the joys of patriotic explosions. For the most part, the remaining episode tackles software and storage. We discuss Google's just-announced Chrome OS, Firefox 3.5, and VLC 1.0.0. We even take a look at our own web server stats to see which browsers you, the readers and listeners, use the most. To break things up, we have another MSI sponsored segment, which includes motherboard tech discussion and an interview with competitive overlocker Gautam Bhatnager. We also answer two listener mail questions. Finally, a veritable pod of storage stories finishes up the show, as we talk SSDs, hard drive history, and backup strategy.

Send in listener mail, and we'll answer on the podcast. - jdrake@techreport.com

Listener mail (1:03:21):

Upgrading to Windows 7 - from Jon:

"My question relates to the soon to be released Windows 7. I recently noticed on the website the projected prices for Microsoft’s latest and greatest OS and the current pre-order deals many websites are offering. I am currently running Windows XP on my main box and I planning to upgrade to 7 once it’s released. However, I would also like to upgrade to a new harddrive when I do the install. So my question is… Now I know that the Upgrade version will require me to do a clean install when upgrading from XP to 7, however do you know if the Upgrade version will also allow me to install 7 on a new hard drive instead of the old XP hard drive? Or am I better off shelling out the 2 bills for the full blown retail version and starting completely fresh?"

A variety of questions - from KJ:

"1. I am looking to upgrade (ASUS 1000h) and curious of what you think of the new and upcoming netbooks and ultra portables. Looking at 11.6", 13x7 screen, decent battery life and decent graphics. Basically, I dont' want to loose any performance from my curent ASUS 1000h, so same battery life, better flash performance, better chipset SATA performance (for my 32G OCZ Vertex SSD). 2. Scott mentioned a while back about doing a review on the gateway lt3103u netbook? Any new info on that. In regards to previous question, what do you think? 3. I haven't seen any review (execpt for MSI x340) about the new Intel CULV parts? ACER is going to release 3500U with 11.6:, what do you think? 4. WHat is the REAL WORLD difference between the CULV parts. A digitime report says that the low performer U2700? is selling for as low as $65. How about a round up of these low cost, low power processors. Thanks 5. Can I ever get the rated performance of my Vertex SSD in a netbook/ultra portable. It seems that most inexpensive PC's (i.e. netbooks and cheap ultra portables) use SATA1. My ASUS 1000H max throuhgput performance is 30Mbyte/sec. Maybe, I should worry about random write perfmance instead of the max throughput. Did I put a fast seven speed manual transmission (with heavy duty clutch) in my 1.4 liter kia? lol!"

Tech discussion:

    A new addition in Damage Labs (0:02:35)- Read more

    On fireworks (0:05:09)- Read more

    Google announces netbook-bound Chrome OS (0:13:02)- Read more

    Firefox 3.5 debuts at last (0:30:09)- Read more

    VLC media player 1.0.0 hits the web (0:44:29)- Read more

    Classic LucasArts games arrive on Steam (1:21:00)- Read more

    Kingston's SSDNow 80GB upgrade kit (1:23:51)- Read more

    A look at SSD performance in Windows Vista (1:28:27)- Read more

    A storage performance retrospective (1:56:53)- Read more

    Toward a more rational backup strategy (2:03:45)- Read more

That's all, folks! We'll see you on the next episode.
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