Who Am I?

I am a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist, an MCP, an MCSA and a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE). I am also A+ and Network+ certified. I have been working in "IT" for about 15 years now. There is never a dull moment and there is always more to learn.

Web Site: http://www.riguy.com [points to new Azure-based site]

MOST POPULAR POSTS (opens below)

November 28, 2012

Windows 8 Phone HTC versus Lumia 920

Regarding my previous post on the Lumia 920 freezing up, I have a coworker who has the latest HTC: same Windows 8 Phone OS. The HTC was chosen by him because it was slimmer and a bit lighter. Some would say it looks better. Personally, I prefer the beefier Lumia 920 and also I was used to the same sized 900, so he chose HTC and I chose Lumia 920.

He has actually had his phone for 2 weeks longer than I have had the Lumia 920. He has had absolutely no freezes at all. This is interesting, and leads me to believe the Lumia 920 screen freezing issue is more hardware related than OS related. It is not a major issue becasue a reboot should resolve. Hopefully, there will be a fix for it regardless. Of course, this is not very scientific, it is only anecdotal.

As stated, overall I love the Lumia 920. The AT&T cellular data is 4G and fast. The phone connections are reliable and the Windows Apps store is really starting to grow. I love the integration with Zune, SkyDrive and my Windows desktop. Also, software updates are very easy to accomplish when connecting the phone to the computer via USB.

November 27, 2012

Lumia 920 Freezes

I had this problem too with my brand new Lumia 920 (AT&T service). I was getting a completely frozen phone, with the Lumia logo on the screen along with the black background. This was very bad, as I actually use this Windows 8 phone for work! OK, I use it for play as well, but I really need it for technical alerts emanating from my Windows servers and overall network infrastructure. I read on a Microsoft forum that using a certain button combination may help to restart it. And indeed holding the Volume button along with the Power button at same time eventually worked.

But wait, there is more ...

Many are already having this issue, it seems, as I found on various Microsoft and Nokia forums. The primary recommended solution, however, either confuses people or does not work. So, the other solution given was "take it back to the store for replacement". No, save yourself the trouble. Read on.

The first time I tried holding the volume button and power button simultaneously, I held the upper (top) volume part along with the power button. This did nothing, the screen was still frozen stiff. For some bizarre reason, pressing the lower (decrease) portion of the volume and power simultaneously did work, but not the upper (increase) volume. It is probably coincidence, but I am not certain. Also, the recommended 10 seconds hold did not work either, so for good measure, I increased the time: Hold both lower Volume (decrease) AND power buttons for a full 20 seconds. You should get a vibration from the phone. Trust me, this is a good sign. HOWEVER, give it an additional 10-20 seconds to refresh before you start panicking.

One last thing: to troubleshoot, I had removed my SIM before trying the above solution. I was hoping for some sort of miracle cure by doing this, but it did nothing. So, even after the above restart of the Windows 8 phone succeeded and a correct reinsert of the SIM Card, I got a "no SIM found" type of message. What now? I could see the screen, internet (WIFI) worked, the Apps all worked, so ... reboot. Yes, I held the power button for a few seconds then slid the screen downward to restart. Voila, now the SIM card is recognized and everything is working well.

My Lumia 920 has been good since this all occurred.

Before using this Lumia 920, I was using the Lumia 900 for about 6 months. I never encountered this particular freeze or total lock up of the phone. I love this Lumia 920 phone, and love Windows 8 but I hope this particular Lumia 920 or Windows 8 screen freeze issue is patched soon! I want this phone to succeed.

November 26, 2012

Windows Update Issue 0x80071A90

I had a Windows Update installation failure that lasted 1-2 months. I never had time to really try to fix the issue. I did remove my ESET Anit Virus, but that did not help. The updates would cycle through (15%, etc), reboots would ensure, and all would look good. Then after a few minutes I would get a note from the updater that updates had failed. Sigh ...

The updater offers a tool to fix this, but it did not work.

Try this, it worked for me. (instructions are per Microsoft):
"Click the Start button, type msconfig in the search box, and then click msconfig.exe. If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
On the General tab, remove the checks for "Load Select Services"; also, go into Services and remove the check for "Hide all Microsoft Services". Then "Disable All". Click OK, and then click Restart ...
[After Reboot]
In the left pane, click Check for updates, and then wait while Windows looks for the latest updates for your computer.
If any updates are found, click Install updates.  If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
Once updates are installed, restart your computer. Click the Start button, type msconfig in the search box, and then click msconfig.exe.  If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
On the General tab, click Normal startup (also verify the Services are all enabled again), click OK, and then click Restart.
If you continue to see this error, see this automatic troubleshooter on the Microsoft Support website, or go to the Microsoft Answers website for more assistance.

Error codes this applies to:

November 25, 2012

ASUS VivoTab with Windows 8

These ASUS VivoTab units look real sharp. And they are now available for preorder, per this article.

"The $800 Asus VivoTab TF810C runs Windows 8 and features an 11.6-inch Super IPS+ screen set at 1366 x 768 resolution."

November 18, 2012

Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga

This Windows 8 Laptop, as seen in this CNET Video review, looks stellar. It is a hybrid tablet and/or laptop. In other words you can put this system into Touch or Tablet mode, or just use it as a laptop. It is nice to have these options. Windows 8 is going hard for the new generation Tablet (Touch) market. And with this Microsoft and Lenovo combination, they have hit a "laptop" home run.

Good review of the Lenova IdeaPad Yoga

Entry Level Windows 8 Laptop

An interesting Widows 8 Laptop, entry level. This inexpensive Acer laptop screen is TOUCH SCREEN!

Acer Laptop

November 13, 2012

Search All Outlook Folders for an Email

On the surface, Outlook 2010 (and other versions) seems to not have a very robust search feature. For enterprise Exchange Server 2010 using Outlook 2010, searching is easy.

If you have no sub or custom folders created under your Inbox, then default searching works well enough. Look for the Search Inbox (Ctrl + E) box. You can enter any keyword to locate emails with said keyword. But I have seen employees in companies who have created dozens and dozens of folders under their Inbox. This is done for organization purposes. I have seen some custom folders nearing or topping 100!

The advanced Outlook search feature is needed in this case, as the default Inbox search only looks within the Inbox itself, and not the sub folders. For advanced searching, try this:
Within your Outlook Home, Inbox, click the Search Inbox (Ctrl + E). Don't enter anything, just single click in it. Then open "Search Tools" near the top, and then "Advanced Find". Then in the "Look for" box, change the default selection to "Any Type of Outlook item". Enter some key words or names, and search all of your sub folders. There are a few other custom parameters to experiment with.

Windows Apps are Growing

Windows Apps are coming!

"Good news for everyone who bought a Windows RT tablet or Windows 8 PC: the apps are coming!
A lack of apps has been one of the big complaints for Windows 8, particularly the RT version, which doesn't run Windows 7 apps. (Full Windows 8 PCs will run any app that works on Windows 7 mode.) No one thought this would be a permanent problem even though Microsoft failed to make its goal of 10,000 apps in the store by launch day. Windows 8 officially went on sale on Friday.
However, it came close at 9,029 apps of which 88% (or 7,940) are free, according the blog, WinAppUpdate.com."

Apps are Coming!

Microsoft Surface Sales

There have been 4 Million Windows 8 download sales so far since initial release, according to Mashable.

But what about the Surface Tablet? It is not selling super well. Or is it?

"Both Windows 8 and Microsoft Surface have been on sale for more than two weeks, and the big question is: How are they doing? Although Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has already revealed the company sold 4 million downloads of Windows 8 in its first weekend, the only thing he has said about sales of the Surface is that they’re “modest.” "

But then this clarification a little later:

"Update: Microsoft contacted us after this story was published and offered the following statement: When asked about Surface, Steve’s use of the term “modest” was in relation to the company’s approach in ramping up supply and distribution of Surface with Windows RT, which has only been available via our online store and Microsoft retail and holiday stores in the U.S. and Canada. While our approach has been modest, Steve notes the reception to the device has been “fantastic” which is why he also stated that “soon, it will be available in more countries and in more stores.” "

The Mashable Surface Tablet article

Windows 8 Tablet Images

Wow, take a look at these Windows 8 Tablet images. Makes me want to buy one!

November 3, 2012

Reimagining Microsoft

Interesting ... new image reconstruction under way for Microsoft. I see how Windows 8 on the phone and on hybrid tablets/laptops can integrate into their many Server systems and applications nicely, especially considering their huge Cloud services offerings. Also, throw in the impressive Dynamics CRM, and you have a winner.

I like this Microsoft blog.


November 1, 2012

Windows 8 Phone Wireless Charge

The new line of Windows 8 Phones are capable of being charged wirelessly. Some manufacturers are about to release these models. That is correct: the battery can be charged wirelessly. I know, I know, you are going to miss locating those USB cables, and buying replacements all the time.
AT&T has already released the Lumia 920, which can charge wirelessly.

Verizon is about to do the same.

Verizon’s HTC Windows Phone 8X to support wireless charging

"In today’s smartphone world especially in the Windows Phone ecosystem, the smartphone-buying population has a lot to look forward to. After all, Microsoft has already made the big announcement regarding the bevy of new Windows Phone 8-powered devices that are scheduled to hit the market. For the high-end category, we have the Nokia Lumia 920 which will be an exclusive with AT&T while Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer boasts of the HTC Windows Phone 8X which will be released by Verizon in US shores ...

When talking about wireless charging, it is only right that the Verizon version of the HTC Windows Phone 8X should offer the feature. After all, the Nokia Lumia 920 from AT&T will also have the feature. Though Big Red is also slated to launch the Nokia Lumia 822 which has that functionality, the handset is from the midrange category and it is only expected that its high-end offering to have this feature as well."

Sleek Windows 8 Products

The home PC offerings for new WIndows 8 machines look awesome. They are sleek looking, and for those who insist on pointing to and indeed touching their monitors .... these are touch enabled.

Windows 8 Product Line

Windows Server 2012 Products Available Today

Microsoft is really working on integration of all devices into a new server and cloud ecosystem. Heavy stuff!

"Microsoft's MDOP 2012, Windows Server 2012 Essentials available for download"

"On November 1, Microsoft made generally available both its Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) 2012 tool bundle and its Windows Server 2012 Essentials small-business server.
MDOP 2012 is a bundle of six virtualization and management products aimed at business customers who have Software Assurance licensing contracts or Windows Intune subscriptions. Microsoft officials say they've sold 44 million licenses of MDOP to date.

New to this version of MDOP is User Experience Virtualization (UE-V). UE-V allows users switch up their devices but retain their settings without needing to reconfigure their applications or desktop settings each time they login to Windows 7 or Windows 8."

Good ZDNET overview