PCs and Mac

Dell frags XPS gaming desktops in favor of flagging Alienware

Dell frags XPS gaming desktops in favor of flagging Alienware

Dell is taking the unexpected step of culling its XPS Gaming Desktops range in order to give its Alienware acquisition room to breathe. According to the Wall Street Journal, the move is intended to reinvigorate Alienware's focus as well as streamline the company's offerings as a whole. A "combined gaming design and development unit" will tackle the seven current Alienware models and attempt to claw back sales that had been lost thanks to the XPS overlap.

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Apple Time Capsule Review – Backup Made Easy for Leopard Users

Apple Time Capsule Review – Backup Made Easy for Leopard Users

Data backup falls resolutely at the dreary end of the tech-task scale; periodically market researchers release stats showing how few people take the time to safely copy their accumulated files, usually prompting a guilty DVD burning session which never gets repeated. Apple's Time Capsule, then, was welcomed with excited upon its announcement; with the slick, careful design Apple are renowned for, could they manage to make even backup sexy? To be fair, it's a pretty huge challenge. You'll be hard-pressed to find a nicer looking network hard-drive, or one so straightforward to set up, but Time Capsule undoubtedly has its caveats.

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Linutop v1.2: low-power Linux desktop Revisited

Linutop v1.2: low-power Linux desktop Revisited

Tech reviews are very much a snapshot process, making a decision after a relatively short period of time and of a single incarnation of the product. Useful, yes, but not an exact facsimile of living with something day in, day out that you've bought yourself. If you're lucky - and assuming that no manufacturer ever pushes out a product so perfect there are no possible improvements - you get a company that's constantly tweaking and augmenting; if you're really lucky, you get an opportunity to revisit their product and ring the changes. Back in May I spent some time with Linutop's fanless, Xubuntu-based micro-PC, framing my review from the perspective of a Linux-naive home user, to see if the compact device would make a decent alternative to a low-end Windows PC. At the time I criticised how tricky, for a fledgling user, it was to add functionality beyond what was preinstalled; since then, Linutop have released v1.2 of their software package, and asked if we'd like to check out the changes.

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Zonbox subscription-based Linux PC reviewed

Zonbox subscription-based Linux PC reviewed

Back when I reviewed Linutop's fanless Linux PC one of my final thoughts was how it might compare to Zonbu's similarly Linux-based Zonbox.  Both have cut-down specs and no hard-drive, but while the Linutop relies on a thumbdrive for storage, the Zonbox uses an online subscription service with a subsidised starting price ($99) and monthly fees of $12.95 upward.  Over at ArsGeek they picked up a Zonbox and gave it a good going over with their review-stick.

 

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LG’s award-winning low-power PC

LG’s award-winning low-power PC

Oh yeah, baby, you know what time it is!  It's another round "What's my model motivation?" today courtesy of LG and their super-compact X820 desktop PC.  So what's this lovely lady thinking?  Personally I'm leaning toward thinking that the X820 is in fact the size of a mid-90s IBM mainframe and the girl in pink is actually a massive giant.  In which case she's likely wondering what the job prospects are for a 20-foot perpetually-grinning woman in heels and a mini-skirt.  Anyway, LG are probably hoping that we'll pay more attention to the X820 - a winner of the 2007 reddot Award - that has a new low-power Intel Series 3 CPU.

 

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SlashGear Review: Linutop’s fanless Linux PC

SlashGear Review: Linutop’s fanless Linux PC

Much to my shame, Linux is something of a mystery to me. Actually, I think they should teach at least the basics of it in school computing classes, alongside English and at least one foreign language (though don't ask me about my French abilities either), but this is neither time nor place for my election campaigning. And so I look on with maudlin self-disgust at promises of Dell laptops with Linux pre-installed, or clever thumb-drives and Live CDs that offer a chance to fiddle with the OS without ruining your everyday copy of Windows; I inevitably fold when faced with some sort of command prompt. Perhaps, then, you'll wonder why I was so keen to try the Linutop, a surprisingly compact and silent diskless computer that runs a specially tweaked version of xubuntu.

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Silent Linux PC makes browsing plug’n’play

Silent Linux PC makes browsing plug’n’play

I'd seen photos of the Linutop diskless, silent computer before, but I hadn't quite realised how small it was until seeing the image below; unless that's a specially-constructed Giant Wallwart Of Death, the fanless PC is deliciously dinky.  Based on a very low-power AMD Geode LX700 and external flash storage, it runs a customised version of xubuntu specifically tailored for things like internet browsing, blogging, word processing and IM.

 

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PC World plant seeds of change with green PC

PC World plant seeds of change with green PC

Environmentalists have long been complaining that most computers sold are far less than "green", and while there have been ecologically-considered options before now they've been nowhere near mainstream.  UK retailer PC World aims to change all that, or at least so their press release would have you believe, with a sustainable computer made from recycled and energy efficient components.

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Vista models say slim is sexy

Vista models say slim is sexy

It seems that when it comes to fashion, slim is still in - several companies are showing off their waifish desktop PCs all stoked up with Vista.  Of particular note include TG's oddly named "Little LLUON", which has the catwalk-friendly honour of being just 44mm thick despite packing an Intel Core 2 Duo processor.

A bit of a bloater in comparison, Samsung unveiled the DM-Z10/180.  Now at 55mm thick it's a full 25% broader than the Little LLUON, but we'll overlook that in favour of its adapted Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 processor, 1GB of RAM and 250GB, 3.5-inch SATA hard-drive. 

Samsung DM-Z10/180

More photos of these petite powerhouses after the cut.

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WoW Expansion Set for January 16th

WoW Expansion Set for January 16th

MMORPG gamers all over the world can be merry and rejoice (unless you play EQ 2); World of Warcraft's long-awaited expansion, The Burning Crusade, has a street release date after a delay pushed it back from October to the first quarter of next year. The expansion will now hit shelves on January 16th, just in time you ask your parents to pre-order it as your Christmas present. The game is available from various retailers for $39.99; no word yet as to whether this means that you'll also get a free month of playing with your purchase, but I would be surprised if Blizzard decided that the expansion shouldn't feature the same caveat as the retail version of the game. See you in Stormwind!

[via Gamers.com]

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