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Historically, Windows hasn’t been tremendously effective in the area of backwards compatibility. Anyone who has migrated to a new Windows release with older peripherals has likely felt the pain I’m talking about.

On the flipside, the idea that Windows 8 will drive Windows users to Ubuntu in droves is unlikely. If a new PC buyer has been content with the Windows OS, switching suddenly to something else is highly improbably. Even if keeping their existing hardware and locating a good Linux distro might be a more economical solution, most people will stick with what they know. It’s simply a matter of familiarity for most Windows users looking to upgrade.

Although we don’t have hard numbers on the Ubuntu adoption rate, we do know that Ubuntu is seeing new users every day. Many of these users are installing Ubuntu on newer hardware so they can enjoy all that Unity has to offer.

This is great news; however, these days it feels like Ubuntu’s focus on newer hardware has left existing users of older hardware out in the cold. Normally, I wouldn’t have a problem with this, except that Ubuntu has left some users wondering if it will continue to be a viable option for them. I touched on this in a previous article.

Are peripherals enough to drive people over to a new platform?

In most instances, no, not even a little bit.

The fact is, most users are bound to a familiar software and desktop layout that they’ve come to expect. It’s the price folks pay when they become accustomed to a proprietary operating system. Once you’re locked into a needed proprietary application and its corresponding file format, you may be locked in for good. There are certain motivations that may potentially still bring people over to Ubuntu, but the legacy software issue remains a concern.

Despite the software lock-in issue, one group of Windows users may be willing to try out a Windows alternative. These users are the ones who will be upgrading from Windows XP.

Regardless of what you may have read elsewhere, Windows XP is alive and well in the world. And things are going to become interesting when XP users look to their next upgrade path.

For the less tech-savvy, the natural upgrade path is going to be to a new Windows 8 PC. After all, Windows is a brand these users know.

However, for those who have been exposed to Ubuntu Linux at some level, the temptation to give the OS a shot might finally take hold. These individuals are usually more tech-savvy or might be the family tech support person. Assuming the PC is fast enough to support it, Ubuntu suddenly looks like a viable option in these instances.

But before we get too excited, there are some things that need to happen here in order to maximize Ubuntu’s adoption rate during the Windows 8 release cycle.

A more natural approach would be a greater focus on the Ubuntu LoCo teams. These are Ubuntu support groups who volunteer to put on events in their local areas. They help those who need assistance with Ubuntu, along with providing other great benefits.

With this in mind I went to my own LoCo group page thinking surely there would be lots happening considering how new Ubuntu 12.10 is, right? Sadly, I was mistaken. Upon visiting, I was presented with a static website and crickets.

From the limited information listed there, it was clear to me that this page was targeting those who already knew what Ubuntu is. And once again, it lacked any compelling reason for me to check it out. But hey, at least they offered pictures! On the plus side, I was thrilled to see that their forum was very active, so that was good.

After poking around the various LoCo resources, I realized why the expertise gap remains between Ubuntu and Windows and how incredibly ineffective the current LoCo setup is. Honestly, I’ve seen local Linux User Groups with better organization than this! While the LoCos do okay with coordinating international events, they remain largely within their own little echo chamber. And last time I checked, that isn’t a great way to get new users on board.

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Best Netbook Os: Ubuntu Vs. Xp Vs. Windows 7

What’s the best OS for use on the new ultra-portable netbook systems? I used a Samsung NC10 netbook and three operating systems to try to find out the answer.

The Samsung NC10 is a pretty standard netbook –1.6GHz Intel Atom N270 processor, 1GB RAM, 160GB hard drive, and a really nice 10.2-inch WSVGA screen. The NC10 comes with Windows XP Home as the preinstalled OS.

As you’d expect, Windows XP runs really nicely on the NC10. Despite having what many consider to be a lowly specification, a netbook is a very capable system. Given that Windows XP is now more than seven years old, the inevitability of Moore’s Law has meant that budget hardware can deliver a fantastic computing experience. The biggest problem with XP, especially for anyone who has used a more modern OS, is that it looks and feels long in the tooth.

However, no matter how tired that Windows XP looks and feels, it works very well on the NC10, and everything on the netbook is designed with XP in mind.

So, how will the little Samsung netbook feel with a different OS loaded onto it?

The two operating systems that I tried were Ubuntu 8.10 “Intrepid Ibex” and Windows 7 beta build 7000, both of which in their 32-bit flavors. (I didn’t see any point to loading a 64-bit OS onto a system with only 1GB of RAM).

The first point to make is that Windows 7 is a BETA. That means things can go wrong and if they do, you are very much on your own. Don’t expect your OEM to help you out, and don’t expect much in the way of support from Microsoft.

The second point to note is that when changing the default OS on any system it’s possible to run into trouble. Unless you are comfortable with installing, reinstalling, backing up, finding and installing drivers and general troubleshooting then you should stick with whatever OS came installed on your system.

The final point worth making is that I made sure that the BIOS firmware was the very latest code before attempting to install either of the new OSes.

The method I used for installing the operating systems was a simple one – I dug out my USB external CD/DVD drive and hooked that to a USB port. This seemed far simpler than messing about with USB flash drives.

First off I installed Ubuntu 8.10. Overall the installation process was quick and simple – something that I’ve come to expect of this particular Linux distro – and I ended up with a snappy OS.

Problem was, a lot of things seemed flaky. The most obvious of these was the fact that the trackpad seemed to behave very oddly and the Wi-Fi just wouldn’t work. I later also discovered that the special Fn (function) keys weren’t working, something which I was expecting.

These issues aren’t deal-breakers by any means, and solutions are at hand. A good source of information was Ubuntu’s own help site, which provided me with solutions to most of the issues I’d noticed. It also informed me about a few issues that I hadn’t noticed relating to the speaker sounds not cutting out when headphones are used.

At best, when running Ubuntu 8.10 on the Samsung NC10 you end up with most of the Fn keys not working (brightness does, but all others, such as monitor switching and sleep, are dead), a non-functioning Wi-Fi on/off switch and no trackpad multi-touch.

For me, while having features that I couldn’t use might bug me occasionally, I don’t think that they would be deal-breakers, although the inability to switch off Wi-Fi could be a pain at times.

From a performance perspective, the netbook has no problems handling the full desktop OS. While it’s hard to be sure, I’d say that Ubuntu is faster and snappier than XP, and applications such as Firefox and chúng tôi are quite functional. If you can live with a few non-functional Fn keys, and are up for a little problem solving, Ubuntu is overall an improvement over the pre-installed XP OS.

Next up, Windows 7 beta. The leap from XP to Windows 7 meant that there was no chance of upgrading the system. However, for a system I was going to put into daily use I wouldn’t take that shortcut because the best way to install Windows is always to carry out a clean install.

As someone who primarily uses Windows (although I do have systems running both Mac and Linux too) I like Windows 7, like it a lot. To begin with, 7 is a pleasure to install.

The time gap between popping the DVD in the drive and being at the desktop actually working is around 20 minutes, and small things such as not making the Windows Experience Index test mandatory during the first run (something which can take quite a bit of time on slower systems) represent a huge improvement over Vista.

In case you’re wondering, the NC10 scores a respectable 2.1 on the Windows Experience Index rating, making it an ideal general-purpose PC.

Next Page: Which OS is ultimately best on an Netbook?

The Windows Xp Upgrade Question: Windows 7 Or Windows 8?

Microsoft is ending support for Windows XP on April 8. While you’re technically free to keep using the 12-year-old operating system, doing so may put you at greater security risk for attack as future vulnerabilities go unpatched.

We won’t make the decision between Windows 7 and Windows 8 for you, but if you do decide to heed Microsoft’s nagging post-expiration pop-ups, we can help you pick the right operating system for your needs. 

The case for Windows 7

The biggest benefit to Windows 7 is familiarity. The pop-up Start menu is still intact, and the basic functionality is similar enough that you don’t have to relearn much. You can even make Windows 7 look like Windows XP with just a few tweaks.

Toasty Tech

By comparison, Windows 8 (and the sweeping Windows 8.1 update) has a steeper learning curve. Microsoft got rid of the pop-up Start menu and replaced it with an app launcher that takes up the entire screen. This Start screen is filled with new kinds of apps that are optimized for touch interaction. While the desktop is still available, you may find yourself getting bounced back and forth between the two interfaces. Crucial system commands are hidden in invisible “Charms” and “Hot Corners” that only appear when you move your mouse to certain points on the edge of the screen. Summoning the hidden menus becomes second nature once you’re using to it, though there’s certainly a learning curve to the unfamiliar system. 

Likewise, you can bring back some familiarity to Windows 8 with settings tweaks and third-party software, but it’s a much more laborious process. Windows 7 is the safer bet if you want things to stay pretty much the way they are in XP, or if you’re buying a new PC for an XP-using relative.

Windows 7 also has the benefit of being a highly refined, complete operating system. From the start, it was a vast improvement over Windows Vista, rather than a complete reinvention that introduced new problems. And since its launch in 2009, it has received a major Service Pack upgrade and countless bug fixes. Windows 7 isn’t perfect by any means, but unlike Windows 8, it doesn’t feel like a work in progress.

The case for Windows 8

The default Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 (pictured) Start screen looks nothing at all like Windows XP and hides important commands behind invisible controls tucks into corners. 

The traditional Windows desktop is available in the new-look Windows 8. While it lacks Windows’ iconic Start menu (for now) and you have to travel through the app-filled Start screen to get there (again, for now), those concerns will one day melt away, as Microsoft is trying to address PC users’ biggest Windows 8 complaints through software updates.

Some of those benefits are subtle or under the hood. Startup and shutdown times are much faster in Windows 8, and overall performance is slightly improved. Virus protection is now built into the operating system, so you don’t have to download Microsoft Security Essentials or pay for an antivirus suite, and a new secure boot option is enabled by default.

Pondering hardware and support realities

Also, if you’re just now migrating from Windows XP, perhaps you’re not the type who likes to upgrade often. Keep in mind, then, that Windows 7’s extended support ends in January 2023. Windows 8 offers extended support until 2023, so you’d have an extra few years before we have to repeat this whole exercise.

How To Enforce Password Rules On Users In Windows

If you are a Windows administrator managing multiple user accounts or computers, then you may want to enforce password rules like the complexity and maximum age to keep the computers safe from weak passwords. Using strong passwords and changing them once in a while, if not frequently, is one way to protect the system integrity. In fact, most online and offline accounts enforce these kinds of password rules to keep their users and information safe. You can do the same for your Windows machine using the deeply buried system configuration settings. So, if you ever need to, here is how you can enforce password rules on users in a Windows system.

Enforce Password Rules on Users

To enforce password rules on Windows users, we are going to use the Windows Group Policy Editor. To start, press “Win + R”, type gpedit.msc and press the Enter button to open the Group Policy Editor.

Here, navigate to the following policy in the Group Policy Editor.

The value entered should be between 0 and 24, i.e. Windows can only store a maximum of 24 passwords in the history.

That’s all there is to do, and it is that simple to enforce password rules on a Windows system. With the above simple rules, you can make your Windows computer more secure and safe from the weak passwords.

Vamsi Krishna

Vamsi is a tech and WordPress geek who enjoys writing how-to guides and messing with his computer and software in general. When not writing for MTE, he writes for he shares tips, tricks, and lifehacks on his own blog Stugon.

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Internet Explorer 8 Will Not Modify Html5 Tags In Print Stylesheet

Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer9 enables the users to use such HTML5 tags in their browsers. However, Internet Explorer 6-8, Safari 4x and other such older browsers does not support those tags due to which we can’t apply those layout options in the web page.

So, how can we use those HTML5 tags in Internet Explorer 8? For this, you can use html5.shiv.

First let’s understand about the print style sheet.

What is a print style sheet? Example

@media print { body {font-size: 12pt}; header {display: none}; footer {display: none}; margin: 2cm; width: 100%; }

How to create a print CSS?

There are few things which you should keep in mind while you are styling a page which is to be printed. They are −

Define borders and font size

First you should to add margin to the page.


page { width: 100%; margin: 3cm; }

Highlight the links Example

a: link { background: transparent; font-color: blue; text- decoration: underline; }

Hide the videos and audios

Since videos and audios cannot be shown on the paper, there remains gaps on the page which are inappropriate. So, you should hide videos and audios.


.video { display: none; width: 0 !important; height: 0 !important; overflow: hidden !important; }

Note − !important is a rule of CSS which gives more importance to a property. If you use !important

Rule, then it overrides all the previous styling codes for that property on that element.

Hiding other unnecessary elements

There are many areas of a web page which does not need to be printed. So, you should hide those areas. This can be done using display: none.


nav, button { display: none; }

html5shiv & printshiv for basic styling

Let us understand how htmlshiv & printshiv work towards stylesheet.


html5shiv is a Javascript shim for Internet Explorer 6 – 8, Safari 4.x and Firefox 3.x which enables it to support the new HTML5 styling elements.

It is used to create elements using document.createElement for the above mentioned browsers. It has chúng tôi which enables HTML5 elements to be formatted while being printed in IE 6-9.




chúng tôi is a piece of code which enables styling HTML5 elements in a web page which are to be printed in Internet explorer of versions below 9.


Alternative method

You can also use the onbeforeprint and onafterprint event for doing so.

onbeforeprint event occurs when a page is about to print that is before the print dialogue box appears.

onafterprint event occurs when a page is in the process of printing i.e., after the print dialogue box closes.


In Javascript, object.onbeforeprint = function() { code} ;


Suppose you want to hide a video which is present in a webpage before printing it, then the following code can be written −

function example() { document.getElementById( “video”).style.display = “none”; }


Although the updated versions of Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari does have various features which enables the users to style a page which is to be printed, but the previous versions like Internet Explorer 6-9, Safari 4x etc., does not support such HTML5 elements for formatting the page. In order to make the browser read those codes, you can use html5.shiv and onbeforeprint event of Javascript.

How To Prevent Users From Deleting Printers In Windows 11/10

The Add and Remove a device or printer option is available in Control Panel. These options are available for all users. However, if an administrator wants, he can remove the access to these options for local users. This article will guide you on how to prevent users from deleting printers in Windows 11/10.

Prevent users from deleting Printers in Windows 11/10 Using Registry Editor

The method which we will show you to disable the Remove Device option is by using the Registry Editor. To use regedit, you must sign in to Windows computer as an administrator.

Follow the below-listed steps:

Copy the following path, paste it into the address bar of the Registry Editor, and press Enter. If you want, you can also go to the path manually.


Now, you have to create a new value in the Explorer subkey.

Close the Registry Editor.

Using Group Policy Editor

Group Policy Editor feature is already present in Enterprise and Pro editions of Windows 11/10. If you are using its Home edition, first add Group Policy Editor to Windows 11/10 Home edition, and then only you will be able to use this option. Once you have done it, follow these steps:

Open Group Policy Editor

Access Printers folder

Open Prevent deletion of printers setting

Select Enabled option

Press Apply button

Press OK button

Close Group Policy Editor window.

Let’s check all the steps in detail.

In the very first step, you need to open Group Policy Editor (or GPO) window. Use the Search box, type gpedit, and press Enter key to open it. You can also use PowerShell, Windows 11/10 Setting app, and other ways to open Group Policy Editor.

When the Group Policy Editor window is opened, access the Printers folder using the following path:

That setting will open in a new window. There, you have to select the Enabled option.

Later, if you want to allow users to delete added printers, then follow the steps that are covered above and open Prevent deletion of printers setting. After that, select the Not Configured option in the setting window, and use Apply and OK buttons.

Now you and other users will be able to delete any of the local and network printers.

Now, no user can remove or delete the printers installed on your computer.

This operation has been cancelled due to restrictions in effect on this computer. Please contact your system administrator.

If you want to revert the changes, set the value of NoDeletePrinter to 0 and restart your computer. If it does not work, delete the key that you have created.

Related: How to prevent the addition of Printers in Windows 11.

Does removing a printer remove the driver?

The answer is a ‘No’. In Windows 11/10, you can easily remove a printer. However, the printer drivers remain stored in your device memory. It is handy when you have to quickly install a printer again. However, if you don’t want to use a printer ever again, then you should also remove its drivers.

There are various ways using which you can completely remove a printer from your Windows 11/10 computer. For example, you can use the Printer Server properties of a printer, and then remove all the drivers and driver package or you can use Command Prompt window and then execute the command associated to remove a particular printer.

How do I change printer settings in Windows?

For each printer installed on your Windows 11/10 computer, you can set different settings. For example, you will be able to set:

Page orientation (Portrait or Landscape)

Paper size

Print quality

Print in grayscale or take a colored print

Paper source


Pages per sheet, and more.

For this, you need to open the Printer Preferences window to change the Printer settings of a particular printer. Just open the Settings app of Windows 11/10, access the Printers & Scanners Settings page, and there you will see the list of available printers. For each printer, an option to open the Printer preferences option will be there. Use that option and then you can set printer settings as per your requirements.

Let us know if you have any questions.

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