Thursday, March 20, 2008

Firefox 3 Vista and Xp Themes Review

On March 10 was released Beta 4 of Firefox 3, and unfortunately Vista-Aero my favorite theme for Firefox is still incompatible. The "Fast Download Video" is incompatible too, but I've given up from that add-on, and I started using Firefox 3 completely, and removed Firefox 2.
However, the new Firefox 3 Theme is excellent, I just love it, only remark would be that the Mozilla team isn't even near to mention a "New Tab Button" integrated with the browser, which would be great.
Now, the themes for XP and Vista. Personally I like the XP version much better and it's more interesting (the buttons are in green, blue, red), unlike Vista Firefox theme where all 4 navigational buttons are blue.
This would not be a problem if you can choose which theme you want to use, but at least with the last beta you are stuck with the theme according to your OS. If you have Vista it installs the Vista theme, if You have XP the XP theme is installed.

How to choose which theme if you run Windows Vista, it's quite easy in fact, if you want the XP themedo the following:

1. Right click on the Firefox 3 icon on your desktop, or quick launch
2. Select Properties
3. Click on the Compatibility tab
4. Check the box "Run in Compatibility Mode"
5. Click Apply

Now you can start Firefox 3 and it will run with the XP theme, if you change your mind just repeat the procedure but this time uncheck the Compatibility mode box.

I could've just said run Firefox 3 in compatibility mode for XP, but I thought hey, someone might not know how to do that.

(Ths is a temporary solution until the final release is out).

Here is a preview of both themes.

Vista Theme

XP Theme

Friday, March 14, 2008

Soundmax Integrated Audio Drivers for Vista 32-bit

So far on the internet it's almost impossible to find functional drivers for Soundmax Integrated Digital Audio for Windows Vista. Now what I have is not an installer file with the drivers, but a folder with the drivers back up. And it works! So here it is what you need to do:

1. Download the files from here (512 KB). Unzip them on Desktop (or anywhere you like), and you'll get a folder called "DriverBackup". In this folder there will be another one named "SoundMAX Integrated Digital Audio", but this is unnecessary information.

2. Now you're gonna need a software called Driver Genius, and you can download a trial version here. A trial version is all you need. You need this software because it's the software I used to backed up my XP drivers before I upgraded to Vista. You can use this even if you have a clean installation of Vista.

3. Install Driver Genius, run it and use the function "Restore". When it asks about the location of the back up folder, just point to the folder called "DriverBackup", and it will automatically detect any drivers in it.
DO NOT point to the folder inside, because it won't recognize the drivers.

4. Start the restoration of the driver, and when it finishes although it might not be necessery restart the computer. And that's it, now you should have audio. You can check in Device Manager, that you have a driver and a sound card. Unfortunately there are no updates to this driver so far.

Note: There's a possibility that Driver Genie won't work because it's the newest version. If so just look on the internet for an older version.

If you have any problems, comment and I'll try to help. Also if it works , let me and the others know.

Major Update: "no need for driver application just extract it and update the driver and set it to the folder". (I haven't test this , but slugrite says so in a comment)