Burning Audio CDs with Media Player on Windows 2008 requires elevation

Yesterday, when trying to burn an Audio CD (to listen to music in my car) starting from MP3 files by using Windows Media Player 11, I kept getting this message "connect a burner and restart the player" and the “Start Burn” button was greyed out, like if the program was not able to seeing that my CD/DVD Burner is actually capable of writing CDs:

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But I knew the DVD/CD burner was connected and working, because I had used it the very same day (with another program) to burn an .ISO image, and it worked from there!

I searched all over the place for this error message, and there are many posts in forums with this message, which suggest you to do the strangest things, from changing your computer, to deleting important pieces of the registry, to reinstall the whole system… most of them are bullshit.

I went to my wife’s PC to test…with her PC it worked. It looked mostly the same: she’s running Vista, not 2008 (but it really is the same kernel, isn’t it?), she has exactly the same DVD burner installed as I do, the same motherboard, both machines and OS’s are 64bit, we both have installed Internet Explorer 8 (and keep it with “protected mode” turned ON), we both have Media Player 11, we both keep UAC enabled…

But then in the end I tried using elevation:

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And here we go, it worked:

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When running the process as administrator, Windows Media Player is able to query the hardware to determine if we have a capable device on Windows Server 2008. It remains a mystery to me at this point why this works on my wife’s Vista machine without elevation, though…

It sure is not a problem to do this operation “as administrator” when needed – but it just took me a minute to figure it out, for some reason.

Got into the Groove again

Got into the Groove again

After several years not touching my midi keyboard not my guitar, this is the natural evolution of having bought a new PC, I suppose: I got inspired and wanted to play music again. Sure, I also study and test stuff on it, but I also want to do something that really is for myself. And something that makes me help relax, instead than working around the clock.

It is then that I figured out how much has changed in these few years: cheap soundcards don't come with MIDI interfaces anymore, these days. That's probably because they were shared with the so called "GAME Port"…. but since most joysticks these days are USB…. also the MIDI disappeared.

Therefore I did a bit of research, and I found an interesting external sound card that does everything I want (and more) and (most importantly) has drivers for Windows Vista x64. I am actually using this on Windows 2008 Server, but since Vista and 2008 really have the same kernel – it just works.

Live Photo Gallery and Flickr

I actually read this (Live Photo Gallery  allowing you to post to Flickr) a couple of days ago in an internal mail, and – even tough I Love Flickr – I have been extremely quiet and cautious and I did not blog about it. In fact I felt like waiting about blogging this GREAT new, because I thought that it was internal-only, confidential information, and I was worried that someone would tell me off 🙁

In the end it turns out that I did not have to wait or be worried, since the cat was already out of the bag!!!

[As a side note, it happens a lot of times that stuff gets public much earlier than when I actually read that internally. In those internal communication it very often is still considered "confidential" when the whole world is speaking about it…. I don't get this whole "confidentiality" thing in these days of porous membranes…]

Luca is loving Purble Place

Luca is loving Purble Place

Purble Place is a new educational game that ships with Windows Vista (even with Starter and Home Basic editions) that can help teach colors, shapes, and pattern recognition.

My kid absolutely LOVES it, especially the section of the game where you have to make and decorate cakes :-).

Windows Vista 5472

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Cool. Transparency in this RC1 build finally works on my laptop. I mean, even with a DECENT resolution.
Everything is much more stable than in the previous beta1 and beta2 builds.

And yes, the background image I am using is this photo of mine.

Flickr Story

Haven't posted in a while, and won't write much this time either. The truth is that I have been too busy lately – working, family, and beta testing Windows Vista. But that's another story and I might have time to tell yuo that another time I get time and will to blog.

What I wanted to write now, instead, is a link to an article I just read and wanted to share, which is quite interesting as it tells a bit of the story of how Flickr has born. Quite interesting.

Especially, the two things I linked here make you think of the "top-down" vs. "bottom-up" kind of approach.