Newsletter Archives

  • How to safely test-drive Win11 on your current PC, for free!


    Fred Langa

    By Fred Langa

    The anticipated flood of Win11-occasioned fixes and updates has begun: Microsoft, hardware makers, and software publishers are all scrambling to correct the problems encountered with the original Windows 11 release.

    I think the signs point to a somewhat premature release of Win11, as if Microsoft had skipped or shortened testing of the final “Release Candidate” version, shipping the software before it was adequately vetted in real-world conditions.

    But the fixes are arriving, including work by Microsoft and Oracle to release a 100% free, preconfigured, Win11 Pro virtual PC for testing and evaluation! Read on to see how to use it to safely set up a Win11 test drive on your current PC, plus more on Fred’s early Win11 experiences.

    Read the full story in the AskWoody Plus Newsletter 18.47.0 (2021-12-06).

  • Making an old PC virtually immortal


    By TB Capen

    If you’ve spent years building, repairing, and managing PCs, you’ve probably accumulated a veritable junkyard of old PCs and parts — some still working, some not so much.

    For most of my computing career, my standard practice for disposing of obsolete (at least to me) machines has been to remove the hard drive and donate or recycle everything else. Then, once I’ve gone through the drive and archived important information elsewhere, I’ll typically wipe it and add it to my pile of empty-but-still-functional drives.

    Occasionally, I’ll attach a spare drive to a PC via a USB-to-hard drive connector (more info) to archive files or move really big chunks of data from machine to machine.

    Sometimes, however, I prefer to keep a system as it was originally intended — with a working operation system, applications, and data. And the best way I know to do that without having a bunch of boxes sitting by my desk is to transfer the full setups into virtual machines.

    Read the full story in AskWoody Plus Newsletter 17.7.0 (2020-02-17).