Tuesday, 14 June 2011

The joys of an OS on a USB stick!

The days of recovering that pesky pc using boot cds or command line schnanigans are officially over why? Because why mess about with them when you can carry an OS in your pocket! I have recently been delving into the world of installing and running an OS from your usb stick.
Now all you need is a decent size stick (at least 2gb) and the original installation ISO or files, using a combination of tools you can successfully run windows,Linux and even MAC OS X from stick now if that's not impressive I don't know what is!

A personal favorite of mine is hirens bootcd 14, now this can be setup to boot from usb and give you every tool you need to recover the system and also contains a mini version of windows xp to give you full control over it

Now this software due to licensing must be acquired from dubious sources that I cannot link to, however there is another choice if you wanted something a little more legal!

Ubuntu 11.4 has recently been released and allows you to create a usb stick version straight out the bag, very useful! This is the full version and can allow you to do everything you would do off an installed hard drive version

Friday, 27 May 2011

Embedded APU or not? Console or not?

So I know what your thinking out there... reading this now... is it best to buy and all in one solution motherboard and built in APU such as ASUS AMD Zacate E350 E35M1-M PROor is it better to go old school and buy the motherboard and CPU seperate like the good ol days

Well I can tell you that whatever your thinking it is possible as your probably already know, but I am now thinking from the perspective of my HTPC mini itx build, now I am building this machine on a budget and not as a games machine, I have a Xbox 360

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Jetway NC85-E350 Brazos Mini-ITX Motherboard Released!

So the Jetway NC85-E350 Brazos Mini-ITX Mainboard has been released, this motherboard almost seems to pass under the radar as its specs are quite under par when compared to AMD and ASUS offerings, however it is still a Fusion motherboard and you would hope it would be able to perform as such.

  • CPU
  • Support AMD Zacate E350 Dual core 1.6GHz APU
  • Chipset
  • AMD Brazos Zacate + Hudson D1 Chipset
  • Memory
  • 2 * SODIMM Sockets for un-buffered Single Channel 64-bit DDR3 800-1066 SDRAM up to 8 GB
  • Expansion Slots
  • 1 * 32-bit PCI slot
  • 1 * Mini PCI-E
  • Storage
  • 4 * Serial ATA2 3Gb/s connectors
  • Audio
  • VIA VT1705 6-Channel HD Audio CODEC
  • Ethernet LAN
  • 1 * Realtek RTL8111E PCI-E LAN chip for Gigabit LAN
  • USB
  • Embedded 10 * USB 2.0/1.1
  • Rear Panel I / O
  • 6 * USB 2.0/1.1 ports
  • 1 * PS2 KB/MS port
  • 2 * RJ-45 ports
  • 1 * Audio I / O port
  • 1 * VGA port
  • 1 * DVI-D port
  • 1 * HDMI port
  • Internal I / O
  • 2 * USB 2.0/1.1 headers for 4 USB 2.0 ports
  • CPU / Chassis Fan connectors;
  • 1 * 24-pin ATX Power connector
  • 1 * 18 bit Single Channel LVDS header
  • 1 * COM Port & 1 * GPIO header
  • 1 * CIR header
  • BIOS
  • AMI 16MB SPI Flash ROM
  • Certificate
  • CE,FCC,RoHS,Eup
  • Functional
  • ATM, Automation, medical Equipment, Security, Networking, POS, General Application, Gaming Machine, Transportation
  • Temperature
  • Operating within 0~50 centigrade
  • Storage within -20-85 centigrade
  • Form Factor
  • Mini ITX Form Factor(170mmx170mm)

Check it out yourself at

Notable items missing from the board is USB-3 and support for SATA support for 6gb/s however if you are just after a value board that does what it says on the tin, this board has the essential usual video and audio options and HDMI of course

My AMD Fusion E350 Build...

So what better way to open the Mini ITX procedings is to begin by showing you all my project mini-itx, this project involves a CIT MTX-003B Black Cube Case with 300W PSU, now these retail at £32 over in the UK however I managed to pick mine up for £29.99 from a Local computer business, I intend to fill this with all kinds of wonderous hardware (AMD Fusion Based most prob... such as Gigabyte M1 Mini ITX DDR3 1066 Motherboard GA-E350N-USB3 that I will pick up in the coming weeks so I will try to give you all a hands on and honest opinion on the hardware (while also looking at the options I could have taken!) 

So there it is!, I will open it up and show you the inners as I start to get progress on my Mini-ITX project.

Blog Initialisation!

So my Blog is active, in this blog I intend to show you progress on my Mini-ITX builds and good up to date information about the mini-itx community and products in this (still considered) niche market, I have found the resources for mini-itx builds to be quite limited!