This week’s TROLOV — that’s TR Out Loud on Video — failed miserably at staying under its 10-minute limit. The good news is that this episode is packed full of interesting information about the TechRepublic forums and community. If you’re not a fan of video (sorry about the Flash, Jaqui — oh, and Happy Birthday!), you can choose to just listen to the audio file.

Top discussion threads:

  1. Battling recruiters and the salary issue
  2. Shocked: ‘Indispensible’ IT pro gets let go
  3. Smartphone patents foretell the future
  4. Rogue software: How do you know?
  5. 10 car tech features that have me spoiled

Here are a few other links that you should check out:

If you’d like to contribute to the pics galleries,  please send me your photos.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for the TechRepublic Community Central newsletter!

Most “Thumbs Up” in the TR Questions arena over the past week

  1. Jacky Howe (9 thumbs)
  2. bwilmot and OH Smeg (6 thumbs)
  3. seanferd (5 thumbs)
  4. Peconet Tietokoneet (4 thumbs)
  5. w2ktechman, StealthWiFi, and robo_dev (3 thumbs)

Most Comments in the TR Forums this week

  1. seanferd (209 posts)
  2. Jacky Howe (124 posts)
  3. jdclyde (123 posts)
  4. boxfiddler (114 posts)
  5. Oz_Media (107 post)

TR Member participation

Thanks to TR Member S!ick for sharing the link to his YouTube video, where he highlights some of the TR swag that he received. And a HUGE THANKS (and Happy pre-Birthday) to GG, aka gadgetgirl, for sending me all that cool stuff from Geordie-land. I LOVE IT!

Last week’s Question of the Week, submitted by w2ktechman was: “How many ‘new’ software packages seem to perform worse than previous versions?”

Here are some of the answers that we received from the TR community:

Hal 9000: From my limited experience, I have found that a lot of people have issues working with new M$ Programs as M$ seem to like to change things without reason, but the other Software Providers don’t have the same issues. Programs like MYOB, the people seem to be able to switch without problems once the actual upgrades have been correctly installed, and I do not hear any real complaints about changes made to the App, but M$ Programs are a constant source of Complaints from End Users.
TheChas: Like many things, software performance is a relative term. As a rule, new software packages always run slower and take up more hard drive space. While some of us add hard drive space and upgrade to faster systems for fun, the fact that new software requires faster hardware to run as fast as the old version did fuels the hardware upgrade cycle. What bothers me more than the computer speed versus software size arms race is the dummying down of new software packages. I want to be able to configure the software as much as possible, thank you. Let me control the startup options, the file location, and where the software gets installed. Let me configure the menus. In particular, let me switch off the ribbon interface and go back to menu bars so that I don’t need a larger monitor to be able to see more than a few lines of my document. And, while we’re at it, make the software compatible so that it will run on at least the two previous versions of Windows. If your software or driver will not work with Windows 2000, I have a number of systems that I cannot use your new gadget on.
DHutton: HP Installation software. It’s so bulky and has so much junk in it. HP, it’s just a printer! Why does it take 20 minutes to install??
jdclyde: AutoCad 2009. What a piece of bloated crap. Even if you are within specs for the hardware, it is noticeably slower than cad 2006, so my EX-users all reverted back to that version. Another huge problem with Cad09 is file size. Create a file, and it is HUGE, even if there is nothing in it. So much for emailing drawings anymore. One of my last projects was looking at setting up an FTP server so clients could log in and up/down load drawings, as they are just to large for email anymore. After I get my Cisco lab setup, this is something I will still do at home.
This week’s Question of the Week, send in by TR member betageek52 is: “Shouldn’t malware writers get real jobs?” I’d also like to add, “Would you hire/trust a malware writer?” Send your answers to trol at

Also, thanks to TR member Bobby Smith for sending in a pic of Shorty, TR’s Pet of the Week.

Voice messages, e-mails, and photos = swag
If I mentioned your name on this episode of TROLOV, please send me your mailing address and swag item of choice. And if you want to earn some free TR swag, just send me an e-mail with an answer to the Question of the Week, a brand new Question of the Week, comments, photos, small videos, or even a voice message. Our e-mail address is trol at, our toll free number is (866)-414-CNET (2638), and our Skype ID is tr.out.loud.

We have lots and lots of swag — shirts, lanyards, stress balls, pens, toolkits, frisbees, disposable cameras, etc. — plus the following list of premium products:

Workbook with CD-ROM

  • Windows NT/2000 Network Administrator Resource Guide, Volume 2
  • Microsoft Access Resource Guide
  • PC User’s Troubleshooting Guide
  • IT Professional’s Guide to Project Management, Volume 2
  • IT Security Survival Guide, Volume 1 and Volume 2
  • Visual Basic Resource Guide
  • Administrator’s Guide to Windows Server 2003
  • Disaster Planning and Recovery, Volume 1 and Volume 2


  • Fast Track: SAMS Teach Yourself PHP, MySQL, and Apache All in One
  • Fast Track: Dreamweaver 8
  • Fast Track: Visio 2000/2002
  • Fast Track: Project Management
  • Fast Track: HTML
  • Fast Track: Quickbooks
  • Building .NET Solutions
  • IIS Resource Guide
  • Developer’s Guide to Web Services
  • Fast Track: IT Help Desk Survival Guide, Third Edition
  • Fast Track: Linux Network and Systems Administration
  • Fast Track: Linux Apache Web Server and Workstation Management
  • Fast Track: Windows 2000 Network Infrastructure and Design
  • Fast Track: Interconnecting Cisco Network Devices v2.1
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Project 2003/2002/2000
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Project 98/2000/2002
  • Fast Track: Microsoft SQL Server 7.0/2000
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Word 97/2000/XP
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Access 97/2000/XP
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Access 2003
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Excel 97/2000/XP
  • Fast Track: Microsoft Excel 2003
  • Administrator’s Guide to Active Directory
  • IT Manager’s Tool Kit, Volume 2 and Volume 3
  • IT Manager’s Financial Tool Kit
  • IT Manager’s Hiring Tool Kit
  • Network Administrator’s Tool Kit
  • Network Administrator’s Resource Guide
  • Network Administrator’s Security Resource Guide
  • Wireless Networking Tool Kit
  • IT Consultant’s Tool Kit, Volume 1 and Volume 2
  • IT Help Desk Survival Guide, Volume 2
  • Support Professional’s User Administration Tool Kit
  • PC Troubleshooting Tool Kit
  • IT Professional’s Guide to E-mail Administration
  • IT Professional’s Guide to Microsoft Certification
  • IT Professional’s Guide to Data Storage Design and Management
  • IT Professional’s Guide to Policies and Procedures, 2nd Edition
  • Securing Your Enterprise: A Guide to Network Threat Management
  • Handling Internet Security Threats
  • IT Policy Risk Assessment
  • Risk Management Tool Kit for Project Managers
  • Small Office Took Kit
  • Small Office IT Policies
  • Home and Small Office Tool Kit
  • Windows 2000 Network Administration
  • Windows 2000 Server Resource Guide
  • Windows Server 2003 Migration Tool Kit
  • Windows Desktop Support Resource Guide
  • Desktop Support Resource Guide
  • Microsoft SQL Server Resource Guide
  • IT Vendor Management Tool Kit
  • Essential IT Forms
  • Landing Your Next IT Job
  • Managing Government Projects
  • Managing Effective Teams
  • TechMails Tech Tips for Windows Administrators (NT, 2000 Pro, and 2000 Server)
  • Tech Tips for Exchange Administrators,  1st and 2nd Edition
  • Tech Tips for Outlook Support, 1st and 2nd Edition
  • Tech Tips for Windows XP Professional, 1st and 2nd Edition