Home Gadget Geeks

Home Networking, Windows Server 2012 Essentials, Lights Out, the HP N40L, N54L and the Deal with NASA Interns – HT108

Jim (@jcollison) is joined this week by Andrew (@unrealshots) and Christian for Show 108!  We were all about Christian (and Gary’s) Home Networking setup to include an in depth look at Windows Server 2012 Essentials, SharePoint and Active Directory!  How to do it, how not to and how to get it done with what you have!  We also talked about Lights Out, a Windows Server Addin, The HP Microserver N40L and N54L as well as Christian’s Intern experience at NASA. Join us for the show live each Thursday at 8pmC/9E at Listen Mobile:   No LIVE show for the next two weeks – Jim is in Germany.  Follow all the pics I take at   Congrats to the Drobo Winner Jay Shridharani  Server 2012 Essentials: I. Overview What makes Server 2012 Essentials different from Server 2011? Why should I pay $300 more for Server 2012 Essentials when WHS 2011 is $50 bucks? Big Features: Why it’s great for home users Why it’s great for geeks II. Let’s Dig In: TeamViewer Screen Sharing Session Microsoft brag features Data Protection, continued. Windows Server 2012 Essentials can perform complete system backups and bare-metal restores of the server itself as well as the client computers connected to the network—now with support for volumes larger than 2 terabytes. New with Windows Server 2012, the Microsoft Online Backup can be used to protect files and folders in a cloud-based storage service that is managed by Microsoft. Windows Server 2012 Essentials also centrally manages and configures the new File History feature of Windows 8 clients, helping users to recover from accidently deleted or overwritten files without requiring administrator assistance. Anywhere Access. Remote Web Access provides a stream-lined, touch-friendly browser experience for accessing applications and data from virtually anywhere they have an Internet connection using almost any device. Windows Server 2012 Essentials also provides an updated Windows Phone app and a new Metro app for Windows 8 clients, allowing users to intuitively connect to, search across, and access files and folders on the server; files are also automatically cached for offline access and synchronized when a connection to the server becomes available. Windows Server 2012 Essentials turns setting up virtual private networking (VPN) into a painless wizard-driven process of just a few clicks, and simplifies the management of VPN access for users. Client computers can leverage a VPN connection to remotely join the Essentials environment without the need to come into the office. Workload Flexibility. Windows Server 2012 Essentials has been designed to allow customers the flexibility to choose which applications and services run on-premises and which run in the cloud. In previous versions, Windows Small Business Server Standard included Exchange Server as a component product, which added expense and complexity for customers who wished to leverage cloud-based messaging and collaboration services. With Windows Server 2012 Essentials, customers can take advantage of the same integrated management experience whether they choose to run an on-premises copy of Exchange Server, subscribe to a hosted Exchange service, or subscribe to Office 365. Extensibility. Windows Server 2012 Essentials builds on the extensibility model of Windows SBS 2011 Essentials, which allows other software vendors to add capabilities and features to the core product, and adds a new set of Web Services APIs. It also maintains compatibility with the existing software development kit (SDK) and Add-Ins created for Windows SBS 2011 Essentials. You can email Christian directly at The Average Guy Facebook Group The Average Guy Facebook Page If you’d like to subscribe to the show, click on  to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Or, you can now stream the show online at at The Show Announcements and Schedule: #!/TheAverageGuyTV Jim’s Twitter: #!/jcollison Contact the show at Find us on Facebook: Find this and other great Podcasts from the Average Guy Network at
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Home Gadget Geeks

Virtual Private Servers, Toyota Tundra, HP MicroServers, and the Power of Social Media – HT053

Jim, Andrew and Christian are joined this week by Mike Howard from jpeg2RAW for this weeks’ installment of the Home Tech Podcast. The show starts off, with Christian telling us about the trials and tribulations of hitting the limit of an unlimited web-hosting package, and the experience of choosing a new Virtual Private Server Provider (VPS), finally setting on Virpus, where he has even dealt with the CEO. Listen LIVE at 6pP/8C/9E/1aUTC every Thursday night over at Listen Mobile: Jim tells us about his Thanksgiving Turkey Post, about wrapping the turkey in bacon to retain the moisture within the turkey, and bring the flavor of bacon and turkey together! The guys move on to talk about the new Live features in Google Analytics, where you can see in real time traffic visiting your website.  If you have a website that receives a lot of traffic, this is an excellent way of determining where your traffic come from, and how it reaches your site, be it Twitter, Facebook or other social media sources. Mike gets the petrol heads amongst us drooling as he tells us about his new Toyota Tundra CrewMax TRD, and why he purchased the car, and the technology that is in the car, as well as some of the other technology that Toyota is putting into their new vehicles.  The guys go on to talk about some of the social behavior that is exhibited on the roads, and if changes in in-car technology would change the way some of us behave on the roads if the technology in our cars was more advanced. Christian talks about some of the challenges with extracting a file with a .gz extension with 7-zip, when trying to extract a file that wasn’t compressed using 7-zip.  for those with similar issues, try WinRAR, as it may save your day! Christians’ Deal of the Week is the Creative Labs Fatal1ty Gaming Headset from Tiger Direct for $  If these headphones live up the legacy of the Creative Labs products, they should be a great headset. Jim talks about the latest bargain he picked up, being the HP ProLiant MicroServer N40L, sold in a Shell Shocker for $249, including 2 GB of RAM, and a 250 GB hard disk.  These little servers have a very low power consumption, and perfectly suited to running Windows Home Server. Christians’ Tech Tip is WinCDEmu, a virtual drive mounting utility that lets you mount image files without having to burn to CD or DVD. Andrew talks about enabling the new Google interface, by editing a cookie used by Google Chrome.  A quick modification if you want to enable the new look before it reaches you! Mike talks about the power of social media, as he relates a good news story of a Camera Lost at Sea Returned with the Help of Social Networking. The guys briefly discuss what they consider to be the most powerful social media platforms, being Google Plus, Facebook and Twitter Mike tells us about the recent changes to Adobe’s upgrade policy, which means that only owners of the most current version of the Photoshop family will be able to upgrade to the new Creative Suite 6 when it is released.  The guys talk a bit about the cameras they use, and the editors and workflow management software they use for managing and processing their digital photographs. For those of you who have a Facebook Page, and you don’t understand the data about your viewers, the Non Profit Facebook Guy explains how Insights works. The guys close out the show, talking about the Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, and if they picked up any bargains, and what they have their eye on if it comes on sale. Don’t forget our feed location has changed – click on to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Facebook Page: Facebook Group: If you’d like to subscribe to the show, click on  to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Or, you can now stream the show online at at The Show Announcements and Schedule: Jim’s Twitter: Andrew’s Twitter: Contact Christian: Contact the show at Find us on Facebook: Find this and other great Podcasts from the Average Guy Network at Some links may contain affiliate codes that benefit the Average Guy Podcast Network.
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Home Tech

HP TouchPad is Back! Well, Sort of Back?

I made a big deal about the HP TouchPad just a couple months back and even dropped a few reviews here at the Average Guy ().  But as most of us know by now, HP decided to get out of the table business (later reversed) sold them for $99/$149, quickly sold out and we thought we would never see them again, right?  WRONG! I first saw this at Best Buy, and today I saw the same thing at #160; They are back at $149, but with a catch!  (click the graphic to see the deal) HP TouchPad FB356UT Tablet – WebOS , Qualcomm Snapdragon Dual-Core APQ8060 , 1GB Memory, 32GB Internal Storage, ; XGA Capacitive Touch, a/b/g/n Ok…so it’s not $99 and you have to buy an HP Laptop or Desktop to get the $150 rebate, but if you were doing that anyway, would you pull the trigger on this?  Good luck and happy hunting!
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Home Gadget Geeks

ISP Cloud Storage, Nike MAG, Google Plus Widgets, Input Director, E3 Spark Plugs, Metro Start Pages, and a stroll along Nostalgia Street – HT043

Jim and Andrew and Christian are joined by Rich O’Neil for this week’s installment of the Home Tech Podcast. The show starts off with Andrew giving an update of the status of solar installation rebates in Victoria in Australia, and why he is installing more solar panels on the house. Jim tells us about Cox Communication’s new offering, which gives their Internet subscribers a cloud-style backup solution, starting at 1GB to 50GB up to Unlimited storage, depending on your subscriber plan.  If you are a subscriber, this is a great alternative to the other cloud solutions we have spoken about in the past. Listen Mobile: Andrew brings us the Nike MAG, a new shoe that will have all fans of the Back to the Future movies drooling, being the self-lacing shoe that Marty McFly wears in the second movie – check it out at Nice Kicks; not the best looking shoe in the world, but definitely one for die hard fans of the movie!  The shoes will be available on eBay, and all sales proceeds will go to the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. Unfortunately no-one has designed a functional Hover Board as yet, but we live in hope! For the Google Plus users who want to be able to integrate their social feed onto their Windows 7 desktop, the folks over at Kalamon Software have released a Google Plus Windows 7 desktop gadget, which “Displays live Google+ messages feed on your Windows 7 desktop”.  The guys discuss the various desktop information feed utilities that they use, including Rainmeter, HTC Home, and the built-in CPU and Memory widget.  The guys go on to talk about how Google Plus is being used as opposed to how folks use Facebook and Twitter. Andrew brings us a fantastic utility called Input Director, which allows a single keyboard and mouse to control multiple PC’s on multiple monitors.  If you’re confused already by the description, this image might help! The setup was a very easy setup, with an Average Guy rating of 2/10 for simplicity!  If you’re a Linux or Mac user, you should check out Synergy, which although being a little more difficult to configure, provides a similar service, but allows you to slide between platforms as well as monitors, using a single keyboard and mouse. From Christian’s Corner, the Deal of the Week, is the E3 Spark Plug, which Christian’s family have found has improved their highway cycle fuel economy by around 4 mpg, just by changing the plugs over. Christian’s Tip of the Week is a Windows 8 Metro Style Home Home Page for your web browser, which lets you pre-define websites in the same style as the Metro Style that is seen on the home screen of the current Windows Phone.  A very cool way to start your browser, sure to get your friends talking. Christian tells us about his latest project, designing and installing a security camera system for a baseball field, and the constraints of finding an Internet Provider, and the guys discuss some of the ISP and network connectivity options available. Rich tells us about the latest audible book he is listening to, “The Master Switch” by Tim Wu, who coined the term “Net Neutrality”, which talks about the cycle through which information industries rise, consolidate, monopolize, capture governments, force out competitors, and eventually, fragment into something less grandiose, less perfect, but more vibrant, open, and innovative. The guys take a walk down Nostalgia Street, talking about the advances in communication in the past 20-25 years, including the reduction in the cost of international phone calls, email, and communication as we now know it, including video calling. The guys close out, talking about some of the horrendous hail storms that have lashed Melbourne and Nebraska in the past 18-24 months, with hail stones the size of baseballs, and the damage that these storms do to property. Don’t forget our feed location is changing – click on to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Facebook Page: Facebook Group: If you’d like to subscribe to the show, click on  to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Or, you can now stream the show online at at The Show Announcements and Schedule: Jim’s Twitter: Andrew’s Twitter: Contact Christian: Contact the show at Find us on Facebook: Find this and other great Podcasts from the Average Guy Network at
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Home Gadget Geeks

How to Prevent Spam and a Computer Virus, Desktop Protection with OpenDNS and K9 Web Protection from BlueCoat, Mailing List Solutions, Storage Expansion, and Digital Photography – HT042

Jim and Andrew and Christian are joined by Mike Howard for this weeks’ installment of the Home Tech Podcast. After the introductions, Jim reminds us all of the importance of using an Uninterruptible Power Supply or UPS for those of us who live in areas that experience power issues from time to time. The guys move on to talk about the recent increase in spam, especially around seemingly random people signing up to forums and sites where comments can be posted.  Christian tells us about a site, Stop Forum Spam, which is a service that tracks known spammers, and has plugins for a lot of the popular Bulletin Board and Blogging platforms such as PHPBB and WordPress. Listen Mobile: In an Anti-Spam / Anti-Virus vein, the guys talk about the latest initiatives from the “A Faster Internet” project, from players we’ve all heard of before, including the OpenDNS and Google DNS projects. The Speed Up effort tries to take this another step further by making sure a user’s request for a content goes to a server near her, making delivery faster and more efficient from a bandwidth perspective. Jim talks about K9 Web Protection, from BlueCoat, which is an internet content filtering application that sits on the PC, and makes sure your kids are blocked from websites including those who’s content may contain pornography, gambling, drugs, violence/hate/racism, malware/spyware and phishing.  Well worth checking out if you have young kids who are seeking more “freedom from Mum and Dad” when they are on the Internet. Andrew brings us an interesting item found on the Skype blog this week, which enables you to make and receive Skype calls on your regular phone handset. Whilst talking about Skype, Mike discusses the recent updates coming through to the Skype client, where the client may automatically update itself, even if you are in the middle of a conversation.  The guys talk about some of the tribulations of the branding that we are starting to see in Skype calls since Microsoft acquired Skype in May this year.  The most recent changes to Skype were documented over at the Skype Blog back in July. From Christians’ Corner, the guys talk about the Skype Powered, Facebook Video Calling feature that appear to be gradually rolling out, and which of the guys do and do not as yet have it available in their profile. Christian talks about his recent trials regarding setting up an SMTP mailing service, given most hosting companies don’t tend to like you sending large e-mails, as this is often the attribute of an e-mail spammer.  After trying some alternatives including mailing lists, local SMTP servers, Christian finally happened upon Send Grid, an online service that specializes in sending mass emails, as well as providing analytical data around the emails that you send from your email lists. For the Deal of the Week, Christian tells us about how he added an additional 10TB of storage to their home storage array, using an Intel RAID SAS/SATA controller and a bunch of Samsumg F4 2TB EcoGreen drives from , bringing the home storage up to 34TB, and leaving the other hosts drooling at the performance from the new storage array. Mike gets the photographers amongst us salivating with the specifications of the up and coming Sony SLT-A77 digital SLR which at release is set to bring us a 24 megapixel camera, capable of shooting up to 12 frames per second. Mike also talks to us about Lytro, an exciting new camera that once it comes to market will allow the photographer to adjust depth of field AFTER taking the photograph, something all amateur photographers wish they could have done at some stage in time. In social media circles, Christian tells us about Seesmic Desktop, which will integrate all of your social outlets into one interface, check it out over at   Seesmic have clients for Windows, Mac, Android, iPhone and Windows Phone, so you can integrate all your feeds on a device close to you. To close out, Mike tells us how to change the Mouse Hover Time, before the Mouse Hover activates in Windows 7. Don’t forget our feed location is changing – click on to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Facebook Page: Facebook Group: If you’d like to subscribe to the show, click on  to update your iTunes library, or for other Podcast downloading applications, please click on the RSS Feed and pick your Pod Catcher of choice! Or, you can now stream the show online at at The Show Announcements and Schedule: Jim’s Twitter: Andrew’s Twitter: Contact Christian: Contact the show at Find us on Facebook: Find this and other great Podcasts from the Average Guy Network at
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Deal-of-the-Week

TAG Tech Deal of the Week–Build your own RAID 5-0 box

For those of you who can never get enough storage at home, this weeks’ Deal of the Week may be for #160; The Intel RAID SAS/SATA Controller Card from allows you to build a RAID array in every combination you care to think #160; Not the cheapest deal we’ve ever bought you, but definitely a useful one! Match this card up with some SAMSUNG EcoGreen F4 2TB hard disks from , and the sky’s the limit for your new storage array.
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