Tags Posts tagged with "monitor"


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With more graphics cards and games supporting 4K, there has never been a better time to get a 4K monitor – here is our review of the Asus PB277Q 4K one.

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The ASUS PB287Q True 4K ultra-high definition (4K UHD) monitor, featuring a 16:9 aspect ratio WLED display that delivers next-generation 4K UHD visuals, with resolution up to 3840 by 2160. With a pixel density of 157 pixels-per-inch (PPI), the PB287Q provides over 8 million pixels, four times the pixel density of standard Full HD displays for astonishingly detailed visuals – allowing you to experience more onscreen real estate and stunning image clarity that have to be seen to be believed. The PB287Q also delivers an impressive 1ms GTG fast response time and a 60Hz refresh rate for ultra-smooth gameplay.



What’s in the Box?

The box contains the monitor, base, power cables, manuals, audio cable, an HDMI cable and a DisplayPort cable.

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A Closer Look

The stand is already attached to the monitor, although you can remove it if you wish to wall mount it.

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The base is very sturdy and easily attaches to the monitor.

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Like so.

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Using the PB287Q Monitor

The power and the other connectors are at the rear of the monitor behind a removable plastic strip. I found it easier to rotate the screen itself to fit the cables I wanted to use.

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I connected the monitor via DisplayPort to my Windows 8.1 PC which has a GeForce GTX 680 graphics card in it. Windows and the GeForce software immediately picked up the monitor, however I noticed that it was only offering me a refresh rate of 29 or 30Hz even though DisplayPort should give me up to 60Hz (if you are using HDMI then 30Hz is your maximum).

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A quick bit of checking revealed that the monitors DisplayPort Stream setting was on DP 1.1. When I changed that to DP 1.2 60Hz was selectable.

The menu system on the monitor is very easy to use and includes various modes and other settings.

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Final Thoughts

The monitor comes packaged in its box very securely and only took a few moments to put together. I liked that the only thing I had to do was fit the stand and hand twist a screw! Once attached it felt very sturdy and secure.

One of the things that drew me to this monitor was the 3 possible connections – 2 HDMI (one of which being MHL) and a DisplayPort connector. For those people with multiple devices they would like to connect to the monitor having more than a single port makes it very useful, and tidy to just everything connected and use an input selector to switch between whatever is connected. And the inclusion of PIP is also very useful, so well done Asus on that front. The ports are fairly easy to access, just pop away the plastic covering and that’s it – although as I mentioned I found it easier to rotate the screen to fit the cables.

All of the on-screen menu options and functions are accessibly via a series of buttons located on the rear of the monitor. They are easy to use although it takes a little getting used to. The menu selections appear quickly so its easy to select what you want.

You can adjust the height of the monitor on stand with very little effort – I found that monitor was at the perfect height for my desk by just extending it all the way up. The viewing angles are great as well, you can choose between –5 degress and 20 degrees. If you need anything different to the viewing angle or the height you could always mount the monitor. You can also pivot the monitor so that it’s vertical if that’s your preference.

The monitor has a number of different modes that include all the things you would expect to find such as brightness, contrast, saturation, sharpness, etc, but there is also a mode called Splendid, which enables you to choose a setting for the monitor depending on what you are viewing. For example, there is a Game Mode for the gamers out there, and even a Standard Mode if you are just doing things like emails and word processing. The best thing to suggest is to try each of these modes and see which suits both your environment and whatever it is you are displaying. All of the modes work very well and I found myself swapping between them more than I thought I would.

Playing 4K games on the monitor, or displaying 4K video content was superb – the quality and clarity is striking, and going back to non-4K you can really see the difference. The very low input lag is a very important feature if you are wanting this for gaming.

The monitor also has in-built speakers, which get the job done, but don’t expect anything superb from them though. There is also a headphone socket to for connecting up your headphones if you dont want to use the speakers. Personally I stayed with my existing speaker setup but it was a useful addition though.

Overall I was really impressed with the PB287Q and can highly recommend it as a great monitor to jump into 4K with, especially if you want to do 4K gaming!


The Asus PB287Q 4K Monitor is available now from Ebuyer for £449.99.

If you are on the market for a 28” gaming monitor, Samsung have the UD590 that you might want to take a look at – and here is our review.


The Samsung UHD monitor offers PC viewing, gaming and more with Ultra HD picture quality. A resolution 4 times higher than Full HD and an incredible 1 billion colours bring images to life with unparalleled realism. A superfast 1-millisecond response time handles even the fastest moving scenes in movies and games, and great connectivity and Game Mode mean it’s equipped for a rich gaming experience. You can do more with multi-linking features like PIP 2.0 and PBP that keep the original source resolution. Thanks to elegant minimal design, there’s nothing to distract you from amazing viewing.

Bring out the best picture quality possible for all your favourite content and make them worthy of your UHD experience. Samsung’s technology automatically detects the content’s original resolution and improves it with noise reduction and up-conversion to create clearer, sharper images. Thanks to UHD upscaling, it brings all your entertainment and other content up to a new UHD-level.

Game Mode adjusts your monitor’s settings instantly to give you an optimised gaming experience. Game Mode smartly detects the changes in scenes, enhances the colour and alters the screen’s contrast to make dark spots darker and light spots lighter so you can see all the action at all times. There is less lag thanks to a faster video response time that ensures that the picture keeps up with action.

Samsung specs

Final Thoughts

The first thing you notice about this monitor is that it looks great, everything about it just makes you think it’s more expensive than it is (although you may not really care). Even the monitor stand makes you think “expensive television”, which is something that Samsung are very good at!

Setting up the monitor was a very quick process and it has enough ports on it to keep most people happy. In my case, for this two minute review, I connected my Windows 8.1 desktop up via HDMI (I also tested my Mac Pro with a display port connection as well) and I was up and running in a few moments.

You may be thinking that for a 4K monitor the price tag means it’s not very good, but you would be wrong. The price is under £500 which is a lot less than other 4K monitors on the market, but it doesn’t scrimp on features or performance.

Picture quality wise I was very impressed. As its a 4K monitor, it can produce up to 1.07 billion colours and the image was very sharp and the colours looks amazing. It also has PIP (picture in picture) if you want to use that.

One thing I wasn’t especially keen on was the angles I could adjust the monitor – basically I could tilt the monitor, and that’s it. For most people that will be fine though.

In terms of gaming, to get the most out of the monitor you will need a decent graphics card, and also games that support 4K, of which there are very little at the moment, although I don’t think that will be long before that changes, and besides, even games that are not running in 4K look spectacular!

So, for a £479 price tag, the Samsung UD590 monitor is a great way to get in on 4K gaming, and even looking at pictures and watching movies make this monitor well worth the money.


To learn more, visit the Samsung website.

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If your computer doesn’t have an HDMI port, you may want to take a look at the USB 3.0 to HDMI External Video Card Multi Monitor Adapter from StarTech – here is our review.

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The USB32HDE USB 3.0 to HDMI Adapter turns an available USB 3.0 port into an HDMI output, with high resolution 1920×1080 (1080p) video support – a convenient external video solution that makes it easy to add multi-monitor capability to a USB 3.0-enabled desktop or laptop computer (optimal performance from USB 3.0, backward compatible with USB 2.0).

Leveraging the high-bandwidth (5 Gbps) SuperSpeed USB 3.0 interface, the adapter functions as an external graphics card to deliver smooth, high-definition content to your HDMI or DVI-capable display (HDMI to DVI Adapter included). The adapter can be used to mirror your primary desktop, showing the same image on each display, or to extend your desktop to double your workspace and increase your productivity.

Who are StarTech?

From their website:

Founded in 1985 by Paul Seed and Ken Kalopsis, StarTech.com is an ISO 9001 Registered manufacturer of hard-to-find connectivity parts. Since its inception, our company has been dedicated to making IT professionals jobs easier by helping them identify, find and get the connectivity parts they need to enable their solutions.


  • SuperSpeed USB 3.0 (5 Gbps) Interface and backward compatible with USB 2.0
  • Supports resolutions up to 1920×1200
  • Includes HDMI to DVI-D Adapter
  • USB-powered – No external power adapter required
  • Choose between Mirrored, Extended or Primary display configurations
  • Driver software supports display rotation
  • Supports the Windows Aero interface
  • Supports 2-channel (Stereo) audio
  • Supports the use of multiple USB32HDE adapters on a single system (up to 5)

What’s in the Box?

The box contains:

  • the adaptor
  • a DVI/HDMI connector
  • manual
  • driver CD

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A Closer Look

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Final Thoughts

The USB 3.0 to HDMI External Video Card Multi Monitor Adapter is fairly small so it doesn’t take up much room – which is great if you don’t have a lot of room around the TV or monitor you want to connect to. It always makes it portable, so you can slip it into your bag if you want to connect your laptop to a TV in a hotel room, for example (just don’t forget to take an HDMI cable with you).

You can easily mirror the display from the laptop, or if you want, extend the display from the laptop to the TV.

The adaptor works on Windows and Mac, and even Linux, so pretty much all your bases are covered.  drivers……..

To use the adaptor you just connect it up to the computer or laptop, install the drivers and that’s it – very quick and simple.

I connected a laptop up to a TV with HDMI (via USB 3.0) and was very pleased with the results – there was no lag, and everything seemed very smooth. I played a 1080p movie through the laptop and again I was very happy with the results – there was no obvious quality difference and there was no lag. I tried it on a USB 2.0 port and it was noticeably slower, but then it is a USB 3.0 device! One thing to note though – don’t expect to play graphic intensive games through it, it just isn’t that type of device unfortunately.

So if you are looking for a small, portable, easy to use device to connect your laptop to a monitor, TV, or projector then you should take a good look at this one!

The USB 3.0 to HDMI External Video Card Multi Monitor Adapter retails for £59.00.


You can learn more from the StarTech website.

Also Lenovo announced today, at the CES 2014 the ThinkVision Pro2840m, one of the best value 28 inch feature packed 4K professional displays and the ThinkVision 28, a smarter display that is not only a ultra-high definition monitor but also is an Android enabled entertainment centre.

“Lenovo is set to establish itself as a leading provider of premium display products with two new world class monitors that set the bar for UltraHD performance and great value,” said Victor Rios, vice president and general manager, Think Desktop, Workstation and Visuals, Lenovo. “The ThinkVision Pro2840m is a must have display for professionals looking for ultra-high resolutions and the ThinkVision 28 defines an emerging category of premium monitors with a smart element for ultimate flexibility for tech savvy customers.”

World Class 4K Display Performance
Designed with CAD/CAM, data analysis or purely for high definition entertainment, the ThinkVision Pro2840m is a feature packed 28 inch UltraHD premium display for the discerning professional who requires an uncompromised visual experience. With a 3840×2160 panel, the latest premium ThinkVision monitor reproduces a stunning image that is vibrant, sharp and detailed and colour reproduction is second to none.

Users will enjoy the clean and ergonomic infinity glass design featuring touch sensitive buttons and dual speakers and the monitor is mounted on a full function stand that allows tilt, swivel and rotate for maximum productivity. An array of ports complete the picture for connection to multiple external devices.
ThinkVision Pro2840m is a must have display for professionals wanting the latest 4K technology at an incredibly affordable price backed by a three year warranty.


4K Smart Display for Serious Work and All-out Fun
Lenovo’s commitment to PC plus innovation is unrelenting and the introduction of a new smart display is no exception. Ideal for home office use with its stunning infinity glass design, the new ThinkVision 28 is a game changing 28 inch ultra- high resolution monitor featuring a 3840×2160 panel that offers a wide range of connectivity options delivering maximum productivity for tech savvies.

The ThinkVision 28 is more than just for work. At the touch of a button, the ThinkVision 28 transforms into a true entertainment hub. On demand content is streamed seamlessly through the familiar Android interface thanks to NVIDIA Tegra-powered technology and ten point multi-touch ensures a fully interactive experience for all the family.

With its ground breaking design and full entertainment features, the ThinkVision 28 not only offers a stunning viewing experience, but revolutionizes the concept of visuals technology by combining an ultra-high resolution display with powerful system on a chip (SOC) technology.

Panel Size 28-inch 4Kx2K monitor
Aspect Ratio 16:9
Viewable Area 620.93mm(H) X 341.28mm(V)
Resolution 3840×2160 (157 PPI)
Colour Gamut 72%
Tilt Angle Forward 5 degree /Backward 25 degree
Swivel Angle 45 degree/45 degree
Lift 110mm
Integrated Connectivity DP+mDP+HDMI+MHL, USB BC 1.2, 3x USB 3.0 and 2x USB 2.0, MHL
Sound 3.5mm stereo audio, Integrated 2×3 watt speakers
Green Features Energy Star 6.0, TCO Display 6.0, TCO Certified Edge 1.2, TUV Green Mark, EPEAT Gold, ULEnvironment Gold, China Energy Label Tier 1, Carbon Foot Print, 85% Recycled Plastic
Screen Dimensions 648.9 mm(H) X 369.3mm (V)

Pricing and Availability
The ThinkVision Pro2840m will be available from April 2014 and is expected to start at $799.
The ThinkVision 28 smart display will be available in selected markets from July 2014 and is expected to start at approximately $1199.

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Acer has unveiled its S6 series of computer monitors. The displays are available in 23 (S236HL) and 27-inch (S276HL) variations, both featuring Full HD resolution and a contrast ratio up to 100 million:1.

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Support for MHL technology enables users to connect their smartphone to the monitors and enjoy media content on a larger screen, charging their handset at the same time.

The S6 series boasts an ultra-slim and space-saving Zero Frame design and uses white LED technology to make the displays energy-efficient.

Other features include two integrated HDMI ports, IPS panels for displaying colour accurately from wide viewing angles and easy tilt adjustment.

The S6 series will be available in Europe, Middle East and Africa from the end of May at a starting price of £329 for the S276 and £189 for S236 (price may vary depending on configuration and country).

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soladapt Logo

If you are looking at the new OS from Microsoft Windows 8, We all know that it is really designed for touch but what if you don’t have a Touch Screen monitor for your PC. What should you do, got out and buy a new Touch Screen for Windows 8, I have the answer for you from the good people from Soladapt, has designed an overlay for you monitor to turn it into a Touch Screen monitor, that works on 15 inches to 159 inches.



The Soladapt will work on Windows machines and also Mac desktops and iMacs. With prices starting from £109.99 you can see you can save a lot of money if you use an overlay than buying a new touch screen monitor. I was lucky to have a quick demonstration at The Gadget Show Live at NEC in Birmingham if you watch the video below you can see a quick demo of the product.


General Size 15 inch to 159 inch 

Fit in with Panel display device  


Touch Mode Single-point touch, Multi-touch, drag, draw-line, rotate, zoom in/out 

Resolution(Interpolation) 4096*4096 

Linearity Error <1.5mm 

Response Speed <15ms 


Input Method Finger or gloved hand (rubber ,cloth or leather) 

Touch Times Unlimited 

Touch Activation Force No minimum touch activation force is required 

Minimum Touch Object 2.5 mm X 2.5 mm 

Vandal-proof No break by 1-pound steel ball dropping from 130 cm high 

Surface Durability Surface durability is that of glass, Mohs\’ hardness rating of 7 


Glass: Without glass, 4mm glare, AG (anti-glare), or AR (anti-reflective) glass 


Light Transmission 92% 

Gloss Antiglare surface (curved or flat): 95  ±  15 gloss units or 65  ±  15 gloss 



Temperature Operating Range: -20°C ~ 70°C;   

Storage Range: -40°C ~ 85°C  

Relative Humidity Operating Range: 0%~90% RH (no dew falls) 

Storage Range: 0% to 95% RH (no dew falls) 

Altitude Up to 3,000m  

Ambient Light 

Direct sunlight 90°to ±30° to the display surface Touch detection 


Direct sunlight all angles to display surface Free of false touch reports 


Operation Voltage Typical +DC 5V, +4.75V to +5.25V 

Power Supply 

Size under 52”(include 52”)USB or PS/2 Interface, power ripple 

max.200mV rms 

Size above 52”(52” not included): external AC-DC power adaptor 

Interface Full Duplex USB 2.0 (Full Speed) Plug and play compatible  

Serial RS-232. Baud Rate: 9600, 8 Data Bits, 1 Stop Bit, No Parity  

Current Typical 150MA@+5VDC; 350mA, maximum 

Power <1.5W, operating current<300mA 

Electrostatic Protection 15 kV air / 8 kV contact discharges (EN61000-4-2,1995 :Level 4) 

Controller Integration inside touch panel 

Agency Approvals CE, FCC, Rohs 

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LG Electronics (LG) unveiled a new line-up of premium personal TVs which combine a TV and a monitor in a single unit.


On LG’s DM2752 and M2752 monitors, users can enjoy a range of multimedia entertainment ranging from terrestrial HD broadcasting to any content served up by a PC at Full HD resolution. Both personal TVs feature IPS panels, boasting lifelike color and extremely wide viewing angles.

“With the integration of multimedia entertainment and the internet, LG is at the frontier of cutting-edge TV technology,” said J.J. Lee, Executive Vice President and Head of IT Business Unit of LG Home Entertainment Company. We are developing unique personal TVs designed to meet the needs of changing consumer habits, whether that customer’s passion is 3D gaming, internet browsing or simply watching their favorite sitcom.”

The personal TVs boast Picture-in-Picture (PIP) capabilities, enabling viewers to open multiple screens simultaneously and watch TV while working on their PC. The personal TVs also feature Infinite Surround Sound for a full-depth surround sound experience. Two HDMI ports are included, making it a snap to connect game consoles, set-top boxes and more. In addition, a USB Quick View feature eliminates long computer boot-up times and enables users to view content such as movies, video clips and pictures quickly and easily.

LG personal TVs are equipped with In-Plane Switching (IPS) panels instead of conventional Twisted Nematic (TN) panels. IPS boosts color consistency and reduces color fluctuations, enabling the personal TVs to reproduce the most lifelike colors. Smooth Color Change eliminates blur generated by rapid motion in action scenes, sports or video games resulting in extremely sharp and clear images. Thanks to an impressive wide viewing-angle (178 degrees), viewers can enjoy high quality images without any color shift – sitting, standing or lying down. The combination of all these technologies provides a rich, comfortable viewing experience.

With the newest in CINEMA 3D technology, the DM2752 premium personal TV offers comfortable 3D viewing with extremely light, flicker-free glasses. And the DM2752 includes an easy-to-use 2D to 3D conversion engine so viewers can watch unlimited high-quality 3D content on the fly. The 3D Effect Mode sharpens the converted images to offer a clearer and more immersive 3D experience. The conversion function works with or without a PC and engages automatically for games, delivering the ultimate 3D gaming experience. What’s more, LG`s Dual Play function enables competing gamers to see two different full screen images at the same time on the same TV, making for incredible head-to-head action.
Europeans have taken notice of LG’s line-up of personal monitor TVs for their technology and versatility. According to a review conducted by CHIP, one of the most widely read computer publications in Germany, LG’s 23/24-inch premium M2382 was recognized as the top choice among all monitors reviewed with TV capability.

LG DM2752 will be available starting in July while the M2752 is now available in select markets throughout Europe.

It’s time to review the Samsung 23″ C23A550U Series 5 LED Hub monitor!


Product Description

The Samsung Central Station CA550 is ready to transform the way you work and play. With amazing connectivity available through the USB 3.0, USB Ethernet and the USB Hub, you can experience faster and simpler uploading, data transferring and web browsing. This also helps in eliminating bothersome cables and docking stations, while also cleaning up your desk space. And thanks to the innovative Dual Hinge Stand, it also serves as the perfect dual monitor. The CA550 picture quality is beyond comparison, featuring Mega Dynamic Contrast Ratio and the Samsung Magic Angle. Add to this the Eco Savings and Auto Power on/off, and you have monitor that performs well in every category.


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What’s in the Box?

The box contains the monitor with stand attached, power supply, cables, product manuals and warranty information, user manual CD, cloth and quick start guide.

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It’s time to review the Samsung 27” C27A750X Series 7 LED Hub monitor!


Product Description

The Samsung Hub Monitor CA750 harnesses the latest wireless technology, now faster and more energy efficient, to deliver a completely new monitor experience. Features such as USB3.0, USB Hub (with 4 USB ports) and the stylish wireless dongle open up huge possibilities. And then there is Auto Wireless Detection, superfast data transferring and fast built-in LAN connections for a streamlined performance. The CA750 even allows for multiple note PCs (with a dongle) to wirelessly access it, while with a cable connection, any individual PC can establish a connection – a truly fantastic idea that’s now a reality. So, experience the ultimate wireless hub with the CA750 Hub Monitor.


SpecsSpecs 2

What’s in the Box?

The box contains the monitor with stand attached, power supply, cables, product manuals and warranty information, user manual CD, cloth, quick start guide and Wireless Connection Dongle (more on that in a bit).

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Back in August we told you about StarTech launching a new USB HDMI video adaptor. Now it’s time for our review.

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The USB2HDMI USB to HDMI External Video Adapter (Dual or Multi Monitor with Audio) turns an available USB 2.0 port into an HDMI output, with high resolution video support (up to 1920×1080) and audio.

The USB HDMI adapter can be used to mirror your primary desktop, showing the same image on each display, or to extend your desktop to double your workspace and increase your productivity. This external graphics card is a cost-saving multi-monitor or dual display solution, for either laptop or desktop applications, offering the ability to connect an additional HDMI (or DVI) enabled display to your computer setup without the hassle of opening the computer case to install a new video card.


  • Quick and easy installation
  • Supports resolutions up to 1920×1080
  • USB-powered – No external power adapter required
  • Choose between Mirrored, Extended or Primary display configurations
  • Driver software supports display rotation
  • Supports the Windows® Aero interface
  • Supports 2-channel (Stereo) audio


  • Add a secondary display adapter and extend your desktop display without taking apart your computer to install a new video card
  • Connect multiple monitors to a single computer, to create engaging multimedia presentations
  • Use the adapter to connect your PC to your television for showing family pictures and movies
  • Great for researchers and writers offering the ability to have reference material on one display and a working document copy on the other
  • Increase productivity by running multiple applications on different screens, check your email on one display and search the web on the other
  • View large or multiple spreadsheets across multiple displays
  • A compact, lightweight solution for traveling business associates using laptop PCs, enabling connection to a secondary display/projector

Who are StarTech?

From their website:

StarTech.com is your one-stop source for every connectivity part you need. From the latest technology to legacy products — and all the parts that bridge the old and new — we can help you find the parts that connect your solutions.

We make it easy to locate the parts, and we quickly deliver them wherever they need to go. Just talk to one of our tech advisors or visit our website. You’ll be connected to the products you need in no time.



What’s in the Box?

Along with the adaptor is a manual, a driver CD and a cable.

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A few days ago Microsoft opened their Garage and let out some software that enables you to control up to 4 PC’s from a single mouse and keyboard. Its called Mouse Without Borders and it’s very cool!


Here is what Microsoft said:

I’ve mentioned The Garage a number of times here on Next and Jay Greene also wrote a story recently about some Garage projects recently for Cnet.

Today it gives me great pleasure to announce a free download resulting from a Garage project. To recap quickly, The Garage is both a physical space in Building 4 at our Redmond HQ, and a company wide program that encourages grass roots invention, tinkering, ideas and incubation of projects. In The Garage,employees get together after hours to build whatever they dream up and the results are often impressive. 99.9% of the Garage projects either ship as part of a Microsoft project or remain internal, but every once in a while there’s a project that doesn’t fit into any existing Microsoft product which will get a lot of request from employees who want to be able to share it with their friends and families.  In exceptions like this, the Garage community will rally together to and publish it as a standalone public download.

Mouse Without Borders is a project I’ve been familiar with for the last 6 months or so and it’s a wonderfully useful tool. In a nutshell, it allows you to reach across your PC’s as if they were part of one single desktop. I have two PCs on my desk at work connected to 3 LCD screens and using Mouse Without Borders I can move my mouse between the 3 screens, even though one of them is attached to a different PC from the other two. What’s more, I can move files between the 2 computers simply by dragging them from one desktop to another. In fact you can control up to four computers from a single mouse and keyboard with no extra hardware needed – it’s all software magic, developed by Truong Do who by day is a developed for Microsoft Dynamics. The software is easy to setup and in addition to enabling drag and drop of files, you can lock or log in to all PCs from one PC, and as a whimsical bonus is it allows you to customize your Windows logo screen with the daily image from Bing or a local collection of pictures :) I regularly use it to have one PC dedicated to social media streams while I work away on my other PC connected to two screens.

The video above both explains and shows Mouse Without Borders far better than I can using words. The project is testament to the power of The Garage which helped Truong develop the user interface and setup the usability tests that have helped the tool become very accessible and easy to use. As well as that, The Garage and its regular Science Fairs inside Microsoft helped expose the project to 9,000 people before it was ready for external release. Now that day has arrived and I’m delighted to announce here on Next at Microsoft that Mouse Without Borders is ready for download.

Download Now [1.1mb]

I look forward to playing with this software when I get a chance – it looks very useful to me!

Here is a short video as well:

My friend and fellow Windows Home Server MVP Sam Wood has just announced a closed beta for his new Add-In called Feedsource for Windows Home Server V1, and as usual it’s cool!

Here is how Sam describes Feedsource:

A couple of weeks ago I hinted that we had an unannounced Windows Home Server Add-In in development. It’s time to let this particular cat out of this particular bag, and start a new closed beta.

Feedsource for Windows Home Server is an Add-In that publishes authenticated Really Simple Syndication (“RSS”) feeds for your Shared Folders through the Remote Access web site. Authorized users access Feedsource RSS feeds from inside or outside your home network, using any RSS reader that supports authenticated feeds, to view the latest changes in your Shared Folders.

Key features:

· Authenticated RSS feeds for Shared Folders that show create, delete, rename, and change events for files and directories

· Automatic integration with the Remote Access web site to view feeds from outside your network with no extra port-forwarding or configuration

· Simple setup through the Windows Home Server Console

· Secure authentication and authorization using SSL and existing Windows Home Server access controls

Installing and Using Feedsource for Windows Home Server

Once you have the add-in, you install it like any other.

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When you then go back into the Console, you will see a new entry called Feedsource.

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You will then see your shared folders listed:

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You can then set how you want each folder to be:

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You can even add custom folders:

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When you make changes to your monitored folders you can easily see the changes:

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And that’s it – very easy to use and really useful if you are sharing content with other people!

So why not get in touch with Sam and get yourself on the closed beta today?

Earlier in the year, Sam also released a preview for his Black Box Add-in for Windows Home Server.

Fellow Windows Home Server MVP Nick Asseloos, author of various WHS Add-Ins including AutoExit and AdminiMi has been in touch to let us know about a special deal for Spring.

As it is now Spring, or at least it’s supposed to be (it’s currently raining here in the UK – what a surprise), Nick has decided to run a special deal for a week, starting today (20th March 2010) were you can buy AdminiMe for 6$/6Euro/6GBP/600Yen. This deal is only for a week remember!

Nick also mentioned that there is a new update coming in the next week or too – so get in now while you can get the deal.

ASoft AdminiMe for Windows Home Server is a console add-in for Windows Home Server.

It is an add-in that constantly monitors your server without you having to do anything.
As the Home Server is a headless machine that is running non stop for long periods of times, and mostly hidden away in some closet/basement/small room; people don’t look at its ‘health’ to often.

But in reality, it could be that the server’ CPU usage is high for very long periods, or errors are occuring, memory utilization is high,…

To avoid this, you can use AdminiMe! It will monitor your server in the background without you having to do anything. And in case something goes wrong, it will notify you.
Added to this monitoring, it contains a console where you can watch all kinds of parameters in real-time. Things like CPU, memory, network, disks and all kinds of statistics like uptime, longest uptime, # of starts,…

But it doesn’t stop there, it also has shortcuts to the most relevant tools: Event Viewer, Task Manager, Performance Monitor, Remote Desktop.

You also have the option to add your own shortcuts to applications!

And next to that, there is a ‘Run-box’ which has the same functionality as the Windows Run Dialog.

There is also a screen where you can view, which users have open files to the server shares.

All events are kept in a log that can be consulted later on.

Features in AdminiMe 2010 for Windows Home Server
– Multilingual UI (supports German, French, Japanese).
– A console that shows a lot of information:
> CPU Usage (in total or per processor)
> Upload & Download speed of the network traffic
> Memory usage
> Total Disk usage
> Current Time
> System Uptime
> Longest Uptime
> Total Uptime
> # of starts
> First start
> Last start
> Detailed information on the storage (activity, temperature, disk space,…)
> All the files that have sessions open by users
> The logging of all events that occured
Handy features in the console:
> Possibility to create shortcuts to applications
> Shortcuts to important system tools: Event Viewer, Performance Monitor, Task Manager, Remote desktop
> Run box (like the Run dialog functionality in the Windows Menu)
> Automatically shut down the server when no clients are connected
Health monitoring:
– Send a mail in case of problems
– Monitoring:
> CPU (monitors the average usage over a certain amount of time)
> Memory (Memory usage)
> Harddisks (Disk space monitoring, disk temperature monitoring)
> System Event Log (Problems reported in the Event Viewer are monitored)
> WHS Events (Warning / Errors)
> Failed Remote Access Attempts
> System (warns if the system has been running non-stop for x amount of days, improper shutdown)

To learn more about AdminiMe, click here: AdminiMe 2010 Add-In for Windows Home Server

To buy AdminiMe 2010, click here: http://www.asoft.be/prod_adminimewhs.html

You can also download a free version which has 99.99% of the functionality enabled, but it’s cheap, it’s great, so why not support Nick?

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