Follow Me, Over Here…

Lately I’ve been writing a lot of good articles and information about our continual product updates at Bitsum. You can subscribe to my feed at https://bitsum.com/news/.

This is our ‘new site’. The legacy site at https://bitsum.com is still there, and it will REMAIN there, as it holds many of our advanced and ancillary software and articles. It also continues to function as a licensing server for all classical licensing codes. Side note: If you have a legacy licensing code and want a new one, contact us, but there really is no need, I assure you. When the new site is ‘done enough’, we’ll work towards an automated transition of all legacy site users.

See you there!

Advertisements
Follow Me, Over Here…

PayPal increases transaction fees – Does away with tiered discounts, and ups international fees

up-image

We just received an email from PayPal, and it’s a sad day for many small businesses like Bitsum. PayPal has now done away with their tiered transaction fees for high volume customers *and* increased their foreign transaction rate by 1%.

That means the new PayPal transaction fees are:

  • 2.9%+$0.30 for all domestic orders
  • 3.9%+fixed fee (approx $0.30) for all international orders
    (plus additional monthly charges for PayPal Pro and other features)

PayPal has been a great friend to us for many years, so I hate to now say that Stripe, a developer friendly alternative to PayPal, is looking more attractive all the time. They developed some javascript that lets web sites process credit cards directly on their site without ever having access to the customer’s credit card. How is this done? Well, javascript is run on the client-side, by the web browser, so *it* is responsible for communicating the credit card data to Stripe’s servers.

We actually do use Stripe on our new web site, simply because the plug-ins we used did not fully support PayPal Pro, and we wanted to keep customers on our site, as opposed to sending them to PayPal and back again, as we do at our legacy site. So far it’s worked very well.

By comparison, Stripe’s rate is set to compete, and now beat, PayPal at a flat 2.9%+$0.30 for *all* transactions, domestic or foreign. Stripe’s transaction fees:

  • 2.9%+$0.30 for all transactions, foreign and domestic
    (no other monthly fees or add-ons)
PayPal increases transaction fees – Does away with tiered discounts, and ups international fees

Process Lasso v8.8.2 Released

This version brings a lot of changes, largely license related. We now fully support our next-gen codes at our new web site. This includes free trial licensing codes as well as paid license codes. Legacy codes will continue to be supported indefinitely. The old site and codes aren’t going anywhere, so there’s no need for existing customers to have new licenses re-issued.

In this release there is also the usual assortment of incremental product refinement and improvements, something that is always continuing here at Bitsum. Soon, we’ll have much larger product development news to report.

In the meantime, visit the new site, or visit again if you’d seen it in it’s earlier rendition.

Process Lasso v8.8.2 Released

The Curious Demonization of the Windows Registry

The Windows Registry is meant to serve as a shared storage location for system and application settings. It is essentially a database, has per-user hives, multiple data types, and is generally well-suited for it’s purpose.

Lookups (retrievals) of registry values are extremely rapid since the keys are traversed using an optimal data tree (an algorithm for amazingly fast searching). It’s most frequently referenced portions, or even all of it, is usually kept in RAM.

First, let us also say that are tens to hundreds of thousands of registry keys containing possibly millions of values. Sounds like a lot, but for computers, it’s not that much to search through, especially when using an efficient data structure. It doesn’t have to go through each key one by one, for instance. Using a data tree, it can find most any key in a handful of comparisons. Quite often it can jump straight to the key it’s looking for.

Thus, when we recently added a new registry key to share between Bitsum apps, we were surprised when users complained that these two new keys were being listed as ‘obsolete’ by registry cleaners. Of course, we explained that these registry cleaners are just guessing, and the truth is that the keys are *not* obsolete, which is why they kept re-appearing after deletion.

However, even if those 2 registry keys had been obsolete, it occurred to me how curious it is that some of the less savory actors in the Registry Cleaner industry have so strongly demonized the system registry. Some would prefer you think of the registry as a performance bottleneck, when it *never* is, or as close to never as one can get in the world.

Some would prefer you think of the registry as a performance bottleneck, when it never is …

Certainly those 2 registry keys won’t have hurt anything, ever.. nor would 2000 keys. Yet, users seemed very concerned. That’s when it occurred to me that I needed to remind consumers about what the registry is, and why it doesn’t matter even f it gets ‘cluttered’, though we were *not* cluttering it up in this case.

The truth is that cleaning your registry will never yield any performance improvement, but may cause harm as registry cleaners must guess at what is safe to delete. Demonetization

As for user impulses to keep the registry ‘clean’, honestly it’s more psychological than anything else. If you want to keep it neat and tidy, that’s your prerogative, just don’t expect that to boost performance.

The truth is that cleaning your registry will never yield any performance improvement, but may cause harm as registry cleaners must guess at what is safe to delete.

All that said, back in the day, there were ways to optimize the registry, which were ironically rarely implemented by the PC optimization industry. This included rebuilding the registry hives from scratch so that their storage is more optimal. However, these days, even this is unnecessary, especially if backed by an SSD, and again hardly any optimization software does this, largely due to the danger inherent in the operation. Note what I describe here is different from simple hard drive defragmentation of the files that back the registry hives. I speak of rebuilding their internal structure by recreating them, which you can imagine can theoretically yield a *marginal* benefit. Yes, even then, it’s a marginal improvement at best.

In short, if you want to keep your registry ‘tidy’, by all means do so! Just don’t fall under the misapprehension that doing that cleaning boosts performance, reduces errors, and isn’t inherently dangerous, especially if not done with precision.

The Curious Demonization of the Windows Registry

Process Lasso v8.8 Released!

This is a fairly large update – there are many additions, fixes, and changes. As always, incremental refinement continues, as does preparation for future plans. One thing Audiophile users will appreciate is the new command line script ‘pl.cmd’ (can just run ‘pl’) that allows them to easily display the Process Lasso GUI on Windows Servers in the ‘core mode’ of Audiophile Optimizer.

Other additions include pathnames to all applicable log entries, which now allows users to jump to the location on disk of the process a log entry pertains to, and in the future allowing much more.

Further, the Keep Running and manually induced Gaming Mode settings are now persisted in the event of an update or restart of Process Lasso, though being a new addition, that only applies to this version and above.

Overall, this a great new version of Process Lasso that has tested wonderfully in our QA labs.

Changes:

8.8.0.0 Addition Build Add ‘pl.cmd’ batch file as a shortcut to launch Process Lasso’s GUI, primarily for Windows Server users
8.8.0.0 Addition Build Add installer section to optionally add Lasso install path to system environment PATH variable. By doing so, command line can simply run ‘pl’ to launch Lasso’s GUI
8.8.0.0 Addition Logging Add pathname parameter to log file, changing log format
8.8.0.0 Addition Logging Show process governor pathname and command line in ‘initialized’ log entry
8.8.0.0 Addition GUI Add new Locate submenu (for disk and internet) to log entries in actions pane
8.8.0.0 Addition ParkControl Add support for new system tray icon and more (ParkControl Pro) [work in progress]
8.8.0.0 Fix GUI Fixes to import and export of configuration file
8.8.0.0 Fix GUI Fix user-induced Gaming Mode state not preserved on Lasso restart
8.8.0.0 Fix GUI Fix Keep Running state/countdown not preserved on Lasso restart
8.8.0.0 Fix Insights Fix sorting of date/time of last restraint column
8.8.0.0 Fix Insights Fix build ordering issue that could have caused wrong insights exe build to be included
8.8.0.0 Change GUI Create safety backup on import of new configuration file
8.8.0.0 Change GUI Reduce maximum log lines to display at one time (to reduce RAM utilization and improve load speed)
8.8.0.0 Change GUI Adjust some in-product URLs
8.8.0.0 Change GUI Reduce timeout after update for system tray click to see revision history (now back to 10 seconds)
8.8.0.0 Change GUI Add new SmartTrim menu option to exclude game processes, part of new submenu for SmartTrim and Gaming Mode interaction settings (not yet enabled)
8.8.0.0 Change Installer/
Updater
Terminate any running ParkControl instances
8.8.0.0 Change Logging Rotate log files after 1000 entries
8.8.0.0 Change Licensing Change product activation to distinct subdomain for server isolation
8.8.0.0 Change All Better Emisoft interoperability
8.8.0.0 Change Localization Update German, Russian, and French

Process Lasso Download Links @ bitsum.com (certified clean and digitally signed):

Process Lasso v8.8 Released!

Process Lasso 8.6.6.8 Released

A minor update to Process Lasso v8.6 has been published today. The revisions are as follows:

8.6.6.8 Fix GUI Fix ‘Change CPU affinity on restraint’ ProBalance menu option wasn’t opening ProBalance Settings dialog
8.6.6.8 Change Insights Flesh out remaining ProBalance menu options, now offering all ProBalance settings within Insights
8.6.6.8 Change Updater Correct installed version number for add/remove programs list after automated product update
8.6.6.8 Change Licensing Next-gen licensing system refinement
8.6.6.8 Change Build Upgraded build virtual machine to Windows 10 Pro
8.6.6.8 Change Localization PT-BR updated
Process Lasso 8.6.6.8 Released

The Windows 10 Experience

Everyone has been writing about Windows 10, and while a lot of it is click-bait, there is also a lot of good information.

Given that, I’m just going to state a few simple things that are my observations of the final Windows 10 release:

  • Process Lasso looks and runs great, of course!
  • Bugs in the Win10 pre-releases are gone. No explorer crashes, in particular.
  • It seems to install very well over-top Windows 8.1. Better than any previous over-top installation I’ve seen. One caveat is that if you use TrueCrypt system volume encryption, you should remove it *first*, then restore it afterwards. However, even if things go wrong due to that complication (or another), the install process leaves Windows 8 perfectly in-tact.
  • The new desktop-centric experience is not only a welcome relief from Windows 8, but is dramatically improved in appearance and functionality.
  • The boot, shut-down, logon/logoff speeds seem substantially faster than even Windows 8.
  • Driver support seems broad, though you should definitely check your PC manufacturer’s web site to see if they have any newer drivers (or obviously if you end up with missing drivers). For the most part, the NT kernel architecture is the same as Windows 8, thus driver compatibility shouldn’t be an issue for many devices, if any. Worst case scenario of some obscure hardware vendor that doesn’t maintain their drivers is that you have to hack the INF to force the driver to install in Windows 10.
  • I’m very pleased, and very excited! At Bitsum, our primary machines are now all running Windows 10 Pro, including our development environment VM.

Enjoy! If you haven’t got a license of Windows 10 yet, get one as soon as you can.

The Windows 10 Experience