Posts in category microsoft - page 11

What are the unknown devices in XP on the MacBook Pro?

This article was written when Boot Camp had limited device driver support and is now therefore out of date.

Apple’s Boot Camp provides the majority of drivers required including the elusive ATI Mobility Radeon X1600 driver however there are a few devices without official drivers. These are;

Apple Remote/IR Receiver

Described as: USB Human Interface Device

Identification: USB\VID_05AC&PID_8240\5&11730951&0&2 (05AC 8240)

Attached to: Intel 82801G USB Universal Host Controller – 27CA > USB Root Hub

Status: Seems unlikely Apple will deliver a driver but should be easy for a third party.

Apple iSight Camera

Described as: USB Human Interface Device

Identification: USB\VID_05AC&PID_8300\5&7A1792C&0&4 (05AC 8300)

Attached to: Intel 82801G USB2 Enhanced Host Controller – 27CC > USB Root Hub

Status: Apple will probably deliver a driver but if not should be a standard imaging chip (Micron).

Trusted Platform Module

Described as: Unknown device

Identification: ACPI\IFX0101\1 (IFX0101)

Attached to: Intel 82801GBM LPC Interface Controller – 27B9

Status: You can grab the Infineon TPM package from Intel’s web site – but who wants it?

Intel Hardware Monitoring

Described as: PCI Device

Identification: PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27A3&SUBSYS_00000000&REV_03\3&B1BFB68&0&38 (8086 27A3)

Attached to: PCI bus 0, device 7, function 0

Status: _Either Intel or Apple should deliver a driver but probably simple for a third party.

Keyboard back light?

Described as: Unknown device

Identification: ACPI\APP0002\A (APP0002)

Attached to: ACPI

Status: Apple might deliver a device but again if not a third party shouldn’t find it that tricky.


Fixing MacBook Pro keyboard annoyances under Windows

This article was written when Boot Camp had limited device driver support and is now therefore out of date.

There are a few annoyances with the MacBook Pro keyboard when in use under Windows XP via Boot Camp. The lack of back lighting and the swapped WindowsAlt keys I can’t help with but the getting the Fn key operational, replacing Alt Gr and switching misplaced symbols I can.

The lack of Alt Gr for those people who need to use foreign characters or the Euro symbol can be solved by simply pressing Alt and Ctrl together instead.

Misplaced symbols (UK keyboards)

The UK keyboards don’t quite work as expected so I’ve put together a couple of key maps to solve the problems.

For the most part the keyboard act as a normal UK Windows keyboard, i.e. # is next to Enter and " are up on Shift2. One key however isn’t right and that’s \ which should be next to Z but can be found up by 1.

MacBook Pro UK Windows Keymap solves this backslash problem and is recommended for experience Windows laptop touch-typists.

MacBook Pro UK Mac Keymap makes the keyboard operate as it is labelled and indeed how it operates in OS X. Experienced Mac users, non touch-typists or consistency seekers – this is the one for you. (Note that # is CtrlAlt3 as per OS X)

Installing these key maps

Download the above file and ensure you unpack the ZIP – you’ll get an error if you try and run the MSI from inside the ZIP as there is another file inside the i386 folder that it needs.

Once installed head into Control Panel > Regional and Language Options then go to the Language tab and press Details…

Click Add… and choose input language English (United Kingdom) and the appropriate keyboard layout of either United Kingdom (MacBook Windows) or United Kingdom (MacBook Mac).

Click OK then choose English (United Kingdom) – United Kingdom (MacBook … from the drop-down box under Default input language and finally hit OK!

Getting the Fn key to work

Input Remapper lets you remap various keys but most importantly comes preconfigured and with a driver to enable Fn on the MacBook while in Windows.

Volume, brightness, Eject, Num Lock, page up/down, home and end will work just as you’d expect.

Additionally FnBackspace will delete, FnEject will print screen, the odd key to the right of the Apple logo will provide context menu and pressing Fn while clicking the track pad will give you right mouse clicks so no need for Apple Mouse.

Have fun!


Microsoft adds embedded SQL Server Everywhere Edition to line-up

Microsoft have announced SQL Server Everywhere as part of their line-up for SQL Server.

Everywhere is based upon SQL Server Mobile Edition but available for Windows XP platform. It is already used by MSN Client and Media Center PC.

Being embedded means there is no background service publishing the information to any application interested. This means it is also quite unsuitable for hosting web applications – if you want a free database server for that you could try SQL Server Express.

Anywhere will ship as 7 DLL’s that weigh in at about 1.4MB but there are some restrictions. The maximum database size is 4GB and Everywhere only supports pure data – no stored procedures, views, triggers, CLR defined types or macros. It has no support for XML or Xpath a simplified security model and a subset of the usual SQL types.

What it does support is up to 256 connections, synchronization, encryption and full file compatibility with Mobile.

The current timetable shows a CTP around July and a full release by end of year. For now you can develop against Mobile but won’t be able to deploy until Microsoft issue a go-live licence for Anywhere.

This brings us up to 7 versions – you may find the feature matrix helpful in determining which one you need.

SQL Server 2005 Enterprise Edition

Includes all the features of Standard but adds vertical partitioning, indexed views, high-availability features, advanced transforms, replication with Oracle, scalability features, text mining and advanced data warehousing. Prices around £17,000 per-processor or £380 per -client.

SQL Server 2005 Standard Edition

All the features of Workgroup but adds proper 64-bit support, support for up to 4 CPU’s, basic mirroring and clustering, the database tuning advisor, notification services, basic integration services, web services, analysis and basic analytics and data mining. Prices around £4,000 per-processor or £250 per-client.

SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition

All the features of Express but with the memory limit at 3GB and no limit on database size. Also includes backup-log shipping, management studio, SQL Agent/job scheduling, full-text search, import/export and business intelligence & enterprise management tools. Prices around £2,700 per-processor or £110 per-client.

SQL Server 2005 Developer Edition

Same features as Enterprise Edition but license is for development, test or demo use only. It must not be deployed to live production scenarios and as such can be had for just £36 or as part of your MSDN Subscription.

SQL Server 2005 Express Edition

Express is Microsoft’s entry-level database service on Windows. It supports only 1 CPU (although multi-core chips are utilized) and a maximum database size of 4GB. It includes auto-tuning, encryption, XML, TSQL & CLR stored procedures, triggers, views and can be a subscriber to service broker, merge replication and transactional replication. It also supports running reports and is free to download and deploy. It makes a great database free database back-end for web sites!

SQL Server 2005 Everywhere Edition

The forthcoming Windows-desktop version of Mobile Edition that provides a free-to-deploy embedded database for your applications.

SQL Server 2005 Mobile Edition

Embedded database for the Windows CE, Mobile 2003, Mobile 5 or Tablet PC. Free-to-deploy but development requires a fully licensed version of Visual Studio 2005.

Now maybe we’ll finally see the back of Jet and the dreary .mdb.


Life with Windows & Boot Camp on the MacBook Pro…


The performance is quite amazing.

World of Warcraft runs nicely under Windows giving an acceptable 20 fps at 1440×900 24-bit color 24-bit depth 1xmultisample with everything turned up high or on. Dropping down the anisotropic to mid-point and turning off the full-screen glow effect and smooth shading bumps that up to 30 fps.

Unplugging the power means ATI’s PowerPlay kicks in which can results in a 50% speed reduction as the X1600 GPU cuts it’s clock from 310MHz down to 128MHz and a similar drop for it’s 256MB GDDR3 RAM. You can turn this off by un-checking the PowerPlay option in the ATI driver settings.

Everest provides a few interesting details including some synthetic benchmarks that show memory performance to be near a Pentium D 820 with Dual DDR400 – a little disappointing given that the laptop is equipped with DDR2-667 SO-DIMM’s.

Memory was a single Micron 1GB module with 5-5-5-15 timings. I added another 1GB of Kingston – a more patient me would have picked up 1GB from Crucial for half Apple’s asking price. Installing the memory isn’t as easy as flipping up the keyboard on the TiBook but only required a couple of minutes and a small Philips screwdriver.

The CPU benchmarks are where it shines with it out performing the P4 530HT, P4EE HT and Athlon64 3200+. Only the Athlon64 X2 3800+ beat it in two of the three tests. FPU performance placed it directly below the desktop chips I’ve mentioned but comfortable margin above a P4 2.8GHz again on two of the three test. On FPU SinJulia it came second only to a 8 way P3 Xeon 550MHz…


Running Everest also shed some light on the internals. Worryingly it identified the Core Duo T2500 CPU as being an “Engineering Sample” but I’m putting this down to Everest warning at start-up that the current version doesn’t know much about Core Duo (Yonah).

The motherboard is identified as an Apple design equipped with the Intel Calistoga-G i945GM north bridge and Intel 82801GBM ICH7-M south bridge. These are part of the Centrino 3 (Napa) platform but having gone with the Atheros AR5006X Wireless instead of Intel’s own 3945ABG they’ve missed out on compliance. They’ve gained 108 MBit and extended range though.

The south bridge is home to Intel’s high definition sound using the SigmalTel STAC9220 and provides the two PCI-E x1 links to the wireless and Marvell Yukon 88E8053 gigabit Ethernet.

Everest was unable, sadly, to report any sensor information such as fan speed and CPU temperature. Hopefully this is possible in a future update. The hard drive was running at 42°c and is a Seagate Momentus ST9100824AS as I went with the stock 100GB 5400RPM.

Windows annoyances

First up is the clock… as far as I can tell Windows uses the BIOS to set/determine local time while Mac OS X uses it to store GMT and adds the appropriate time zone offset. For me here in the UK this just means a one hour shift either way but obviously the problem gets worse the further away from GMT you are.

Next is the keyboard.. While eject is mapped the various volume controls and brightness etc are not. Also get used to the Mac keyboard being slightly different to Windows – alt and Apple/Win are in each others places and various symbols are where they would be on a Windows keyboard – not where they are on your Mac’s.

One oddity is the SPDIF laser is on by default, shining it’s red rays out from the left of your laptop onto whatever might be nearby. Head into the SigmaTel Control Panel and disable Digital Output before somebody looses an eye.

Battery life

One worrying thing is the battery life – something which Apple have been very quiet about indeed. Unplugging the power at 100% battery charge in Windows with all the default power saving stuff turned on reports a lifetime of around 2 hours with a few apps loaded but idle.

While this is on par with other T2500 based systems such as the ASUS A6J it falls a bit short of the 3-hour expectancy set by the Pentium M and significantly short of the PowerBook G4’s 5 hour. No wonder they didn’t want to mention it.

I’d hope that Intel will release updated chipset drivers that better under-clock the system on demand but I won’t hold my breath.