The year in review: ZDNet's top 5 topics

Welcome to ZDNet's year in review and our most popular blog posts based on traffic for 2008. Let's start our countdown.

Welcome to ZDNet's year in review and our most popular blog posts based on traffic for 2008. Let's start our countdown.

5. Blu-ray.

At the turn of 2008, it appeared that Blu-ray was the clear victor in the DVD format wars. I barely remember HD-DVD after just a few months. HD DVD was the standard the PC crowd such as Toshiba, Microsoft and Intel backed. Sony had Blu-ray and wasn't going to be betamaxed this time. Robin Harris our resident storage guru begged to differ. He predicts that Blu-ray is in a death sprial and even $150 Blu-ray players won't save it. Harris effectively argues that Blu-ray still doesn't have the mass volume that you'd expect from a format war winner. Seems shocking, but I guess it's not that surprising. I don't have a Blu-ray player either.

4. Bill O'Reilly's web site gets hacked. 

Instead of the No Spin Zone perhaps O'Reilly's motto should be the no security zone. In September, Dancho Danchev detailed how Bill O'Reilly's Web site had been hacked. The attackers--who prefer to call themselves hacktivists--disseminated personal details and passwords of members of O'Reilly's site. In the end, O'Reilly's Web crew left the password and other data unencrypted. In other words, O'Reilly left the back door open--not a good move when you're such a visible target.

3. Multiple takes on Microsoft's Windows Vista.

Depending on your point of view Vista is either not so bad, a complete disaster or something in between. I put it in the in between category. Vista was a train wreck in the beginning, has gotten better, but now the name is tainted. Add it up and XP is still very popular and folks are hanging out for Windows 7. Adrian Kingsley-Hughes' Vista service pack 1 vs XP service pack 2 benchmarks was a popular post as was Ed Bott's series on fixing Windows Vista one machine at a time (see gallery right). Jason Hiner chipped in his top five reasons why Vista failed. My favorite: Vista just broke too much stuff. Is it any wonder that Mary Jo Foley's play by play of Windows 7--most likely coming in 2009--are popular.

2. Ubuntu.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes look at Ubuntu's Hardy Heron beta was our second most popular item on ZDNet (gallery). Initially I put this open source operating systems like Ubuntu in the early-adopter/supergeek category, but it works just swell for the rest of us too. I have it on one of my laptops and have no complaints. We're still very far away from
mass adoption.

1. Ed Bott's 10 favorite Windows programs of all time.

Ed's post was our most popular blog post of the year as judged by traffic (gallery right). Why was this interesting? Ed has been fiddling with Windows for nearly two decades. When he finds a program and sticks with it that's saying something. What's truly comical is that most of his picks you probably haven't heard of. How many of us have said: "Phew I can't wait to get Process Explorer or Fine Print Dispatcher." Ed does have one of my go-to programs on his list though--SnagIt 8.

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