Streaming Media on A Standard Def TV

StartScreenV1 So, if you want all those cool apps on your TV like Netflix and Amazon there are lots of choices out there. You can buy a TV with built in apps, or most of the new Blu-Ray players have the apps built in also. Unfortunately, you need an HDMI connection on your TV if you are going to use a Blu-Ray player for the apps.
What do you do if you have an older TV without an HDMI connection and want to stream movies to your TV. There are a few different ways to do it, and listed below are the most economical ways. One thing to note is that you do need a High Speed Internet Connection.
1. Buy a Roku box ($59.99 on their Website). This box will hook up to any TV and has built in Wi-Fi to connect to your home internet router. There is also an ethernet connection of you can get a wire from your router to the device. Roku also offers other models that support HD streaming and other features.
2. The Wii game system offers free Netflix streaming as long as you have a Subscription to Netflix. The XBOX 360 also has Netflix streaming, but you need a Gold Subscription to their online community.
The most economical way to go is with the Roku Box.

How Much Are All Your Pictures Worth?

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Rackspace.com cloud computing

Backing up your computer is one of the most important things you should do in today’s digital age.  Most people keep all their photos, videos, and music on their computers. One important thing that must be remembered is that computers do crash, and when they do everything on the hard drive stands to be destroyed and gone forever. Imagine losing all your photos in one second and there is nothing you can do.

Most importantly is how to backup.

  • External Hard Drive Backup – Using this method a person buys an external USB Harddrive and plugs it into his computer. Then you can use software tools to sync or backup your data to that drive at a daily interval. A good free software program to use to sync the files from your hard drive to the external is Toy Sync. This is a free project created by Microsoft. External Hard Drive Backup is a great place to start to backup your data. If your computer fails you have all your important files on your external drive. Make sure you keep your files in both places though, your internal and external drive. This way if one of the drives fail you have the others. The downfall to this backup method is that it does not help you in the case of burglary or fire, when a thief breaks into your home and steals your computer and the external drive connected to it.
  • Local Network Storage Devices – This method is pretty much like the External Hard Drive Method except that the hard drive is connected to your network and not directly to the PC. If you are going to deploy this method a good tip is to keep this device in a different area than your computer, this will help with the theft issue. A good backup software or sync software can also be used with this method.
  • Online Data Backup Service (My Preferred Method) – In this case you sign up for an account with one of the Online Backup Sites that backs up your data on their servers off-site. I use Mozy for my service, but Rackspace.com cloud computing and Carbonite are also leaders in off-site backup.  Once you are a member, a software service is put on your computer that monitors the folders that you want to back up. Every night the software pulls new files off you computer, encrypts them, and stores them on a remote server. If your system fails or is stolen, you can go online and download your archived files back on to your new computer. The big downfall to this method is the time it takes to upload your files to the remote server the first time. This process can take weeks initially, but after that your are good to go every night. It is nice to not have to worry if those pictures will be there after your computer crashes. (This Method Requires High Speed Internet)

The method I use, is to backup to an external drive for fast access to my files, and a nightly upload to Mozy for all my files. The one thing I don’t really worry about anymore is my computer crashing or getting stolen. I always have access to my important files.

Zune Black Screen Problem Fix

zune-tattoo After having the following problem with my 80Gb and 120Gb Zune’s in the last month I think I have come up with a fix. The problem that happened to me is as follows, my Zune was working fine and fully charged and then the screen went black and the unit stopped working. The normal reset button combination (back and up) did not work, nor did any other button combination. When I plugged the Zune into my computer, the computer did not even see a device as being there. I thought the unit was fried, or having an internal battery problem. I let it sit on my desk unplugged for a week and then plugged it back in just to check on it. Then it started to work. Two weeks later the same thing happened to my 120Gb Zune. The only thing that fixed the problem was to let it sit for a few days unplugged and then plug it in. I have had Zune’s for about 3 years now and this was the first time I had this problem. Whatever the source of the problem is, it looks like the only way to fix it is to let the battery run down and then charge the unit back up. Good luck if you are having this problem. Wouldn’t it be great if Microsoft acknowledged this problem on their website, Yeah right.