Over the past few months, I’ve been sampling all of the major U.S.-based competitors to the iTunes Music Store, as well as a few fascinating minor-league competitors. In this post, I’ll show you how each one stacks up against iTMS in terms of pricing and available features. After my testing was complete, I had a new favorite music service, and after you read my report you might decide it’s right for you too.
The Ed Bott Report
Get outspoken insights and expert advice on the products and companies that define today's tech landscape, from a source who knows these technologies inside and out.
Ed Bott is an award-winning technology writer with more than two decades' experience writing for mainstream media outlets and online publications.
More than three years ago, Microsoft introduced its Windows Anytime Upgrade program in a beta release of Windows Vista. In practice, Anytime Upgrade was a spectacular failure. The upgrade process itself was a cumbersome kludge, the price tag was way too high, and there was no perceived benefit in it. Like so many Vista features that were poorly executed, Anytime Upgrade has been completely reworked for Windows 7. Will it be enough to get you to upgrade?
If you’ve read anything about Windows 7 Starter Edition, your first reaction was probably the same as mine: Is Microsoft nuts? This ultra-cheap edition is intended for use on netbooks, but its biggest restriction sounds like a complete deal-breaker: it only runs three applications at once. I’ve spent the last three weeks running Windows 7 Starter Edition on an ultra-portable PC. Surprisingly, Starter edition works fine, if you're really using your PC as a netbook.
Oops, Microsoft did it again. Someone in Redmond accidentally published a page offering downloads of the Windows 7 release candidate to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. That appears to be a slip-up, but the page also confirms the date when the Windows 7 release candidate will be publicly available.
Last week, the Internet echo chamber went crazy over the release of a survey about how soon businesses plan to adopt Windows 7. I've looked carefully at that survey and at a second, newly released survey of IT pros in large businesses. If these surveys are accurate, Windows 7 has the potential to be Microsoft's most successful business OS ever.
The Windows Easy Transfer utility is greatly improved in Windows 7, but it’s still missing a killer feature Microsoft promised three years ago. In this post, I explain how you can use this utility to move your data and settings to a new Windows 7 installation and ask the question that every Windows user wants to know: Why do you still have to reinstall programs when you move between PCs?
Microsoft allows business customers to exercise “downgrade rights” to install Windows XP. Does this somehow represents a surrender on Microsoft’s part to the operating system that won’t die? Nope. Here's the full story.
Keeping files, programs, bookmarks, and passwords in sync across two computers is a tricky task. Over the course of the last few years, I’ve built up an assortment of tools and techniques that help me keep track of files, bookmarks, passwords, RSS feeds, and other assorted data (mostly work-related) as I switch between PCs. In this post, I’ll share my favorite software, services, and shortcuts for keeping stuff in sync.
The hysteria over the Conficker worm is reaching a fever pitch, with mainstream media doing their bit to whip Windows users into an unjustified panic. The trouble with virus scares in general is that they do a wonderful job of driving people directly into the arms of rogue security vendors. So what's a confused consumer to do when one of the largest security companies in the world creates a website filled with sloppy mistakes that make it look exactly like a rogue vendor?
Since IE8 shipped last week, I've read two criticisms repeatedly: One is the burning question of whether IE8 is faster or slower than its competitors; the other is whether it makes reasonable use of system resources. In this post, I explain why some people are seeing performance issues (and share an obscure system tweak that might just cure IE8 performance and stability problems). I also take a closer look at why you might prefer a browser that uses more memory than others.