Tag Archives: Fell out of my head

Why I am never buying an EE / Orange / T-Mobile mobile contract again

I admit this blog post is a bit of a rant, but to be honest I need to get this off my chest (and warn other people).

I’ve been an EE customer for about 4 years now (and for those people living under a rock, EE are the new “Everything Everywhere” brand formed from the UK merger between Orange and T-Mobile). I originally had a 2 year contract with T-Mobile and about 18 months ago switched over to Orange as a business account.

Now don’t get me wrong, some of the service has been first rate. When I first received my Nokia Lumia 800 there were some teething issues with battery life resulting in my first phone getting bricked. Orange Business Customer Services were awesome, they couriered me a new phone next day and within 24 hours I had a brand new replacement phone.

But unfortunately, that is where the satisfaction ends

Problem #1 – Tethering and Hidden Costs
This is a major bug-bear of mine, as when I first went into the store to sign up for a contract with Orange (this was before the big EE re-brand) I specifically told them that I needed 3 things:

  • High data usage so I could use my phone for occasional tethering
  • High minutes count across mobile and landlines
  • High text limit as I use a LOT of text messages

For those of you who don’t know “tethering” is where you can turn your mobile phone into a Wi-Fi Hot-Spot so if you have a 3G (or even 2G / GSDM connection) you can still get a basic internet connection on your laptop. I used this on my old T-Mobile contract frequently (with the good old HTC HD2) and this has been a staple feature on many phones for a long long time.

Now .. I’m not expecting to use this feature every day, but if I desperately need to get / send an email on my laptop while I’m on the train, or in a remote rural location (I live in the country, most pubs and cafes in the area don’t have Wi-Fi) then my phone is the only choice.

So .. I was a little annoyed to find that when I tried to use “Internet Sharing” it didn’t work. When I contacted Orange they told me that I had to buy a separate bundle (for a minimum of £10 per month) and it would have a completely separate data allowance to my normal phone.

Now, this annoyed me on principle but to add salt to the wound the customer services representative actually tried to tell me that “laptop data is different to mobile data”. She tried to keep this up for almost 10 minutes until I told her I worked in IT and she back-tracked and told me “actually, it is just company policy”.  So not only did they have a crappy policy but the person on the phone actually lied to me until I called her out on it!

Thankfully when Windows Phone 7.8 rolled out it all started working, I can only presume because WP7.8 and WP8 both have updates directly from Microsoft (which meant Orange / EE couldn’t block core phone functionality any more).

Problem #2 – Intermittent connections .. loss of data, missed calls, missed text messages
This has been on-going for over a year now and seems to be quite intermittent.

Sometimes I miss text messages (they don’t arrive for several hours). Sometimes I get missed calls (I apparently have full phone signal but the phone doesn’t ring .. I just get a voicemail notification after someone apparently tried to call). I have also experienced loss of data connection. The phone tells me I have full 3G / 3G+ (HSPDA) connection but I cannot access emails or the internet (or any of the app / hub functions which require the internet).

Occasionally rebooting the phone will fix it, but sometimes it doesn’t. I’ve had to borrow my wife’s phone (also a Lumia 800) before now to make a phone call because my phone won’t connect when I try to dial someone.

This isn’t even a signal range issue .. I’ve had this in town centres and in the middle of central London (and again, the phone says I have full 5-bar 3G+ signal).

Problem #3 – After a warranty repair they won’t give me my phone back
This is the major issue I have with EE and is really the last straw. They seem to have some weird company separation between the “services” side of the business (who run the contracts and provide the connections) and the “store” side of the business (with high-street shops, staff and physical phones).

Normally this would be “their” problem, but unfortunately it has become “my” problem.

I was in Tunbridge Wells for the weekend and saw the EE store as I was passing. I thought I would save them some time and just drop my phone in for repair. Last time they couriered me a new phone within 24 hours so I figured it would be just as quick an easy … my mistake.

Firstly it took over 2 weeks for my phone to get repaired, but the crunch came when I got an email telling me my phone was “ready for collection from the store” … erm .. I work in London.

Luckily I managed to convince my wife to go on a mission to try and get my phone for me (armed with photo ID and proof of address) .. they refused to hand over the phone saying that the account holder must receive the phone “in person”.

Next I called the store directly and asked what I could do to get my phone back. Could I write a letter authorising someone else to collect the phone on my behalf? Could they post or courier to the phone to me (I’m happy to pay postage). They bluntly refused .. their excuse? “sorry, company policy”.

So finally I phoned my Business Customer Services. They were (to their credit) slightly horrified that the store was treating me like this (and admitted that if I had called them they would just courier me a brand new replacement phone). Unfortunately, because I’d handed my phone in to the store they couldn’t do this anymore. They contacted the store, but because it’s a separate company had no authority and got the same line of BS that I did “the account holder must turn up in person”.

So now I either have to take time off work, or re-schedule my weekends to get myself to their store in person, just so they would give me back my phone (which I’m paying them for each month as part of my contract).

So .. customer dissatisfaction throughout .. I am deeply unimpressed and will most definitely NOT be using Orange, T-Mobile or “EE” again in the future (and if I have my way, neither will my family or friends either!)

How many apps do you really need for a phone?

I must have had this conversation a dozen times, and seen it from various trolling on the internet … the Windows Phone Store doesn’t have very many apps, and therefore iPhone / Android phones are better.

Honestly .. I can’t say I’ve noticed ..

The stores of course differ wildly in size, back in March 2011 the “app store” sizes for each of the major handsets was (apparently)

  • Apple – 330,000+
  • Android – 206,000+
  • Windows Phone 7 – 11,000+

So .. only 10k apps (I believe the number is a lot higher this year, especially with Windows 8, Windows Phone 8 and Office 2013 all making their moves towards an “app” model) but the premise is the same .. there are a LOT more apps for iPhone / Android than there are for Windows, but does that actually make a difference to your phone?

I thought I would share what apps I have installed and use regularly, just to see how much I am “missing out” by not getting myself the latest shiny tech device from competing providers.

So here they come, in no particular order..


Take your pick, there are a whole bunch of them out there in the Windows Phone marketplace. There is the official twitter app plus the popular rowi and Seesmic variants.

For 99% of what I need I actually use the built-in “People Hub” which allows me to read the latest tweets and also post some of my own updates too. However it doesn’t include direct messaging, search or (un)follow capabilities so a dedicated app is still sometimes useful.

Facebook (only just!)

Same story here to be honest. The “People Hub” does pretty much all I need and I can’t say I have logged into the web interface of Facebook for almost 2 years. I still use a dedicated app (in my case the “official” Facebook app, published by Microsoft) but this is only to check direct messages and occasionally change the odd setting or check something .. but I only tend to fire it up once every 3-4 months.

Honestly I could survive with just the people hub which is built into the phone (as I can always use a computer for those hard-to-reach places if I am desperate) .. but there are dozens of Facebook apps in the marketplace anyway so I tend to have one to hand anyway.


Probably the first one I install to be honest. I used to use AccuWeather but now Microsoft have released their very own Weather app (which I have been using for the past few months). Its useful to have it pinned to the home page so I get live-tile updates (in case I can’t be bothered to look out of the window), but its nice to know if I should expect rain in London before leaving for work so I can grab a rain-coat or umbrella.

Adobe Reader

This is just for simple PDF support. I occasionally receive PDF files as email attachments and sometimes download them (usually terms and conditions) from websites so having some kind of PDF app is a must. Luckily the integration is solid and it launches “on demand” when a PDF file is opened.


Now I’m not even sure if you would need this in Windows Phone 8 due to the HTML5 and Native Flash support in the IE10 browser but on my WP7.5 device I still need an external app to view YouTube videos.

Again, the integration is seamless, if you click to view a video the app launches automatically then plays the video in the native phone video player.


Simple this one .. I have dual LED bulbs on the back of my phone (for the camera) but why not use it as a flashlight (or a “torch” as we say in the UK).

I live in a very dark part of the countryside so having a handy flashlight when I need to navigate my garden at night, or getting from the car to the house without tripping over things is really useful.

Tube Map

Ok .. I admit it .. the London Underground is a bloody rabbit warren. If you haven’t lived there for 30 years, don’t like jellied eels or don’t understand what “dog and bone” or “apples and pairs” means then you will need a tube map!

I specifically use one which allows me to have offline maps because (surprise!) there is no signal on underground trains 🙂


And .. that’s it ..

As I have a Nokia phone it comes with world leading Voice Turn-by-Turn SatNav courtesy of “Nokia Drive” with full (free!) offline maps worldwide and offline searching too, as well as a whole bunch of camera functions, public transport apps and streaming music.

All Windows Phones have Office built in which gives you excellent Word / Excel / PowerPoint / OneNote integration (the OneNote is especially awesome and I use it all the time!)

Social integration is baked in with LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter (which are the 3 social networks which I tend to use on a daily basis .. probably like most people in the SharePoint industry).

The “cloud storage” story is an interesting one as SkyDrive is baked in across the product (you can auto-upload your photos, as well as opening documents from the office apps and browse photos using both the People Hub and the Pictures Hub) but arguably you might get a bit of legs from installing a custom app (there is for example dedicated DropBox and SkyDrive apps in the marketplace)

Wireless HotSpot capability is built in so I can use my phone as a roaming wireless router for my laptop / tablet of choice (along with the usually Bluetooth / hands free functions).

And the email client supports a whole range of email accounts from Hotmail, Gmail and Yahoo through to Exchange and Nokia Mail .. or even just a custom POP / IMAP email account.

The only thing that really stands out is more the “one off” apps that crop up from time to time. You are watching TV and they say there is a companion app .. or one for online banking .. or an app which goes with your latest cook book .. these all seem to be Android and iPhone .. but I survived without having apps for absolutely everything so I think I’ll continue to survive with a Windows Phone.

What is your story?? Any apps which you really can’t live without? (that you can’t find in the Windows Phone marketplace?)

That is one smashed phone ..

Well, it was bound to happen eventually as I use my smartphones every single day and this is the first one I’ve managed to spectacularly break after about 6 years of using them.

I went and dropped my Nokia Lumia 800 from about 4 feet onto a wooden floor and the screen (well .. the gorilla glass covering it) has smashed and now spiderweb cracks covers roughly 1/4 of the screen.

Ironically this only happened when I took the rubber “condom” (protective covering which goes over the phone) off because I thought it might be interfering with my signal (it wasn’t!). The normal covering on this device is quite shiny and doesn’t give you much traction, which led to the phone slipping out of my hand.

Quite impressive is that the touchscreen still works fine, in fact apart from making it difficult to read in a few places it hasn’t really affected the functional at all.. There is one thing though which is that the proximity sensor (which detects when you are holding the phone to your ear and turns the screen off during calls) can’t see through the cracks at the top of the phone. This means that during a call the screen won’t activate and therefore I can’t do trivial tasks like .. hang up, or activate the speaker, or use the keypad!

Luckily I’ve found a local repair shop who will do a replacement screen and glass for £100 with a 24 hour turnaround, so I am dropping it off tomorrow and hopefully will have it back Friday.

For those of you who want to laugh at my clumsiness, a photo of my phone is below 🙂

Yep .. that’s a smashed screen alright!

Possibly the best order confirmation email in the world ..

I recently managed to smash in the screen on my old Nokia Lumia 800 (blog post pending on that little accident!) so had to resort to my trusty old HTC HD2 (the phone that runs anything!).

Unfortunately it was still network locked to my old T-Mobile account. I needed this phone for work and cannot survive for long without txt / phone / 3G capabilities so I went online and got myself an unlock code from www.globalunlock.com. The second best part was I got a working unlock code in under 24 hours by email which worked first time.

The best bit was their order confirmation email (below) .. which was truly awesome! Global Unlock .. you’re doing it right!

Email Received Below

To Our Finest Customer
Thanks for the details on your unlocking order.! As you are reading this, a high-priority siren
alerted all Global Unlock personnel to attend to your order immediately. Our dedicated team of
programmers immediately put on their lab coats and rushed to our state-of-the-art code-unlocking
laboratory. We use only the finest unlocking software – software with algorithms developed by
Nobel Prize-winning mathematicians.

Fuelled by giant cups of black coffee, our programmers are working hard so you can sit back and relax knowing your code will arrive within the promised turnaround time. In case you would like to

check your order status, our web design team has made a webpage just for your order because
that is how special you are to us. Check Order Status (note link removed in this blog post!)

As soon as your code is ready, our quality control team will check every single character not twice,

but three times to make sure that the code works flawlessly. Our customer service specialist will
say some words of goodwill before sending a personalized thank you email to you with your code
in it. The entire Global Unlock team will then hold a big celebration in your honor as our “Best Global Unlock Customer Ever.” A solid gold plaque with your name on it is being ordered as we speak to commemorate this occasion.

We hope you enjoyed ordering from Global Unlock. Your code is on its way. For additional support,

our trusty Customer Support representatives are ready to help 7 days a week, sometimes when they
cannot sleep they come online to check customer emails just to give our favourite customer the best
service they deserve.

The whole team is a little exhausted from this occasion, if you appreciate the service, tell a friend,

Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/globalunlock), Twitter (https://twitter.com/globalunlock) or just scream outside your window as long as you can “I love Global Unlock” Now back to waiting by the phone for any friends or family members you send out way to service them as our second favourite customer as you of course 🙂


The Global Unlock Support Team.

Is it worth upgrading your laptop to USB 3.0? And if you do, which drive should you pick?

I have long been experimenting with different drives aiming for the utopia of a “high speed” external hard drive.

For many years I have been stuck on USB 2.0 (with its quite poor transfer speeds) and have been through a journey of eSATA (they all seem to require external power supplies) and finally settled on a USB 3.0 ExpressCard (that’s PCMCIA to you old skool people). I have a relatively old laptop (well .. I bought it two years ago) which was before laptops started coming with over 3 hours of battery life (I wish!) and USB 3.0 as standard so I wanted some way of getting some decent speeds with the advantages of plug-and-play capabilities and an ExpressCard seemed to be the answer.

These ExpressCards have been around for a while and you can generally pick them up for around £30 and they claim to offer “plug and play, USB 3.0 transfer speeds”. You can couple this with a whole variety of USB 3.0 external drives (or drive caddies, which you can fit your own 2.5″ hard drive or solid state drive into).

Being the curious person that I am I have decided to benchmark the different speeds I get with various drives I have:

  • Samsung 500GB USB 3.0 External Drive (which is a spindle HDD running at 5400rpm)
  • USB 3.0 2.5″ Caddy with a Seagate Momentus XT 500GB HDD (@ 7200rpm)
  • USB 3.0 2.5″ Caddy with a Crucial M4 512GB Solid State Drive

I will test all of these over both USB2.0 and USB3.0 and also compare them to my own internal Solid State Drive (also a Crucial M4 512GB SSD).

In order to run all of these tests I have been using CrystalDiskMark which runs a series of tests for both sequential and random read/write behaviour. I tested at both 1GB and 100MB sizes but frankly they were identical on every single drive so I have here published the 1GB results (as most users I know are typically playing with virtual machine images, ISO images or backups, all of which are typically quite large).

Test 1 – Internal SSD Drive (SATA II)
First off was my internal drive (Crucial M4 512GB) which is an SSD with a maximum advertised transfer speed of 550MB/sec.

Internal SSD – Crucial M4 512GB

At first glance the throughput of 200 – 250 MB/s looks a little low, but the motherboard on my laptop only supports a SATA II interface so my SSD drive is capped to a theoretical maximum of 300MB/s (assuming 2.4Gbit/s after encoding). If I had a newer SATA III motherboard then it should be almost twice as fast!

Test 2 – USB 2.0
I had 3 different tests to perform on USB 2.0. We have our 5400rpm Samsung drive, a 7200rpm Seagate drive and another Crucial M4 SSD drive. The results were not terribly surprising

USB 2.0 SSD – Crucial M4 512GB
USB 2.0 HDD – Seagate Momentus XT 500GB @ 7200rpm

USB 2.0 HDD – Samsung 500GB Drive @ 5400rpm

The results as you can see are utterly underwhelming. USB 2.0 has a theoretical maximum transfer of 420Mbit/s (52MB/s) but this is split two ways so the 20 – 28MB/s we are seeing here is pretty much flat out.

The only advantage the SSD drive has is the random read/write performance which for large 512K chunks is just as quick as sequential read/write and although the 4K chunks are a paltry 4MB/s this is still around 10x faster than the HDD can manage!

Test 3 – USB 3.0
This was an identical test to the USB 2.0 tests but this time running on USB 3.0. The spec for USB 3.0 claims a maximum throughput of 5GBit/s so it is pretty close to the SATA III maximum of 6Gbit/s (and certainly outweighs my own motherboard’s maximum throughput).

USB 3.0 SSD – Crucial M4 512GB
USB 3.0 HDD – Seagate Momentus XT 500GB @ 7200rpm

USB 3.0 HDD – Samsung 500GB Drive @ 5400rpm

This was quite surprising on two notes.

USB 3.0 – Random Read/Write Performance
The random read/write performance of the SSD over USB 3.0 is vastly quicker, with the 512K chunks showing the same performance as a sequential operation (which obliterates the HDD performance) and the 4K chunks showing a 2x – 5x speed improvement.

The HDD are showing almost the same as they were getting before, although again the 512K random read/write is a lot faster (but HDD really can’t achieve the random speeds that SSD drives can)

USB 3.0 – Sequential Read/Write Performance
This was the shock .. pretty much all of the drives get the same performance (between 80MB/s and 95MB/s) and although this is a vast improvement over USB 2.0 (every single drive shows a 400% increase in transfer speeds).

For HDD this is pretty close to their maximum speed as even internal SATA HDD rarely get above 90MB/s purely due to the limits of mechanical magnetic based drives. For me the big surprise is that the SSD drive doesn’t get anywhere near either the speed for the drive or the speed for USB 3.0.

I can only expect this is due to the throughput of the actual ExpressCard itself. The specification describes that the maximum throughput you can get between an ExpressCard and the PC is up to 1.06 Gbit/s throughout (which is 135 MB/s). Once you take account of encoding this will drop and explains why all of our connections are capping out below 100MB/s.

Well .. I can’t deny that the performance is a big advantage even being well below the USB 3.0 maximum spec!

Even using an ExpressCard / PCMCIA adapter you are still likely to get a massive performance boost. To put this in perspective if you were transferring a 40GB Virtual Machine backup to an external drive then:

  • Using a USB 2.0 port (at 21 MB/s write) it would take 32 minutes
  • Using a USB 3.0 ExpressCard (at 85MB/s write) it would take 8 minutes

If that is all you are doing then it really doesn’t matter whether you get an SSD or a HDD as your external device. The HDD are going to be FAR cheaper and you can pickup 1000GB USB 3.0 external drives these days for under £100 depending on which brand you are looking for.

However, if you are planning on going for a “native” USB 3.0 socket on your next machine then going for SSD could give you a huge advantage. You could be looking at over 400MB/s with a full speed USB 3.0 SSD drive which would reduce that 40GB transfer down to 1.5 minutes!!

The alternative is that you want to use your external drive for every-day storage, reading/writing files (perhaps running multiple virtual machines from the drive) in which case you will definitely benefit from the SSD. The random read/write speed even over USB 2.0 is blazingly fast compared to even the quickest HDD and on USB 3.0 this gets even better.

The only question I suppose is .. can you afford it?

10 things I love about Windows 8 (Release Preview)

This follows on from my post earlier this week titled 5 Little things that are annoying me about Windows 8 (Release Preview).

So for balance I am talking positive and talking about the features and options in Windows 8 that really make that upgrade worthwhile (or at least things where you go .. “cool!”).

I am very much ignoring features like “file history” as this is really an existing feature (Previous Versions) with a different name. So .. in no particular order … here are my top 10 ..

#1 Updated Task Manager

This is one area of Windows needing a facelift for quite some time now, and this version has several improvements.

The most noticeable part is that the standard “Process” screen has been uplifted. The columns are simplified and show a colour-coded representation of how much strain they are putting on your system (they turn yellow, orange and eventually red if they start causing a bottleneck and maxing out your system).

The “Performance” screen looks pretty similar, but the graphs have been given a bit of a facelift and now show a neat real-time graph for each component, while showing the detailed view in the main window.

Equally cool is the network information which shows you traffic (upload / download) for your network connections.

There is also a very cool “App History” tab which shows you how much CPU time (hours / minutes / seconds) and how much network resources your apps have consumed.

This not only gives you an insight to how much you use your apps (useful for those you have paid for!) but also which ones are using your all important network bandwidth (which will be incredibly useful for those on 3G or tariff network connections).

#2 Updated file transfer dialog

Windows explorer has also had a facelift, but the one I like the most is the file transfer dialog. The main change here is a graph showing you the history of the file transfer speed. These also stack so if you have multiple files being transferred they are all docked into the same window!

#3 Natively mount ISO images

This is one I’ve been waiting for, and always used to end up installing some third party ISO app (such as “MagicISO”.

Now you can just right-click on your ISO image and select “Mount” at which point it appears as a drive letter. This is great for downloading and installing tools and apps from MSDN or digital download sites. Most of my VMs use mounted ISOs as well so I can use the same ISO for both! 🙂

Easily right click on an ISO to mount it

And it appears as a new Drive Letter 🙂

#4 Hyper-V and Native VHD Mounting

Another brilliant add on (and “finally” moment). Virtual PC really was terrible and I have always stuck to VMware Workstation.

Now they have brought together the full Server 2012 Hyper-V experience to Windows 8 and much missed it has been (you simply have to add “Hyper -V” as one of the selectable “Windows Features” and off you go!)

Along with this you also get VHD (Virtual Hard Disk) mounting too, which is the native format used for Hyper-V. This works in the same way as ISO images described above. I love this feature as it means you can check the contents of your VM even if the machine is turned off (so you don’t need to waste CPU / RAM / boot time to get a couple of files from it).

#5 Storage Spaces .. hot expandable software RAID?

This is a great alternative to using RAID setup. It basically creates a mirrored array using a new distributed file system where you have two or more physical drives. They don’t have to be identical drives (although similar performance will certainly help matters!).

Windows will then split files across both drives so it can recover the contents when one of your drives fails, a particular gotcha it seems for people with a history of failing HDD or SSD (Chris O’Brien .. I really hope you are reading this!)

The best thing about this “Storage Pool” is that you can expand it on-the-fly with additional drive storage, so if you get another hard drive you just plug in your partition and off it goes.

Mainly I can see this being useful for full desktop workstations (with multiple drive bays) or people using Windows 8 for their home entertainment / NAS replacement. When your storage gets a little low just slap in another drive and off it goes 🙂

Note – it was a bit hard to find, right-click on the bottom right to get to Control Panel, and its under “System and Security”

#6 Lock Screen and Live Tiles

Well lets face it, I couldn’t really get away without mentioned the Lock Screen and the Live Tiles functionality. I’ve had a Windows Phone for a couple of years now and I do really like the Lock Screen notifications (although I admit I don’t really use Live Tiles on Windows 8 .. but I can see this being awesome for people who live in Metro, especially touch-screen tablets and Windows 8 RT environments).

The lock screen in particular, showing up Metro Apps (and you can configure which ones can post updates .. if any!). In particular I have two Mail accounts (Hotmail and Exchange) so I can see “at a glance” without even logging back in whether or not I have any new emails or messages.

#7 Fully Integrated Search

Another item that some of us have been crying out for. You can now search pretty much everything from one place. Can’t find it in your Apps? check the App Store, or check your file system, or even check.

The search has a nice internet-driven auto-complete, and switching from one search to another is a breeze. If the app you are using also has search capabilities then that filter will be automatically selected for you.

Search loads from the right-pinned “Charms” bar so your main window is still visible

#8 Login using Microsoft Account

I have to admit I was a little sceptical about this first off, but the more I’ve been using it the better I have found it. This basically allows you to login to your machine using a “Microsoft Account” (which for most of you will be a Live account which you use for Hotmail or SkyDrive).

The most obvious benefits when you first login is that it automatically configures a bunch of stuff for you:

  • Account picture automatically pulled from your online Live profile
  • Mail App automatically includes your Hotmail Account
  • SkyDrive app is pre-configured for your online SkyDrive folders
  • People and Messaging hubs automatically sync with any “Live Connected” accounts such as Twitter and Facebook
  • Photo app automatically pulls content from SkyDrive / Facebook / etc

So a lot of the initial setup pain is already taken care of. This gets even better though when you look at “Sync Settings”  .. which seamlessly syncs to “the cloud”.

This includes a whole bunch of stuff such as:

  • Colours, backgrounds and themes
  • Browser settings, favourites and history
  • Language, Keyboard and input preferences
  • App settings and purchase history

It can even sync your passwords, although it does limit you to only doing this from a “Trusted PC” (which requires you to setup your “Trusted Device” using Live Essentials and configuring it through your Live Account settings).

#9 “Save to Microsoft Account” for BitLocker keys

For those who don’t know BitLocker is a drive encryption tool (which through recent enhancement now rivals TrueCrypt for performance and encryption capabilities). The premise is that your drive contents are encrypted, requiring a password for key token to “unlock” the drive on boot. This stops people from booting to another OS using a memory stick, or simply taking out your hard drive and putting it in another computer (thus bypassing any of the Operating System or NTFS permissions).

The main issue with BitLocker is if you need to move your hard drive or re-install Windows you can’t access the drive without a Recovery Key (a complex long-text string). Normally you would put this on a backup drive or memory stick to keep safe, but this always seemed a little “amateur” for me.

Well, Windows 8 now supports automatically backing up your key using your Microsoft Account! 🙂

This was a nice surprise which I really wasn’t expecting. I ended up removing BitLocker from my Windows 8 machine because the Release Preview clearly has some bugs in it and the disk performance was about 50% lower when turned on (and hardly noticeable at all in Windows 7) so a few IO issues to iron out, but definitely showing promise!

#10 Metered Network Support and Airplane Mode

To be honest, this was a must for any truly “mobile” device and I’m including both laptops and tablets here. Airplane mode is a simple one (instantly disables ALL wireless connectivity, including 3G/4G and Bluetooth). You can access this from the Network Connections side-bar (by clicking on your network icon in the system tray in Desktop Mode, or accessing the “Network” option from the Settings “Charms” menu.

This is a great companion for “Metered Connections” which allows Windows 8 to know if you are on a connection for which you get charged “per MB”.

This has several angles. First, when you setup a new connection (such as a WiFi hotspot) you can mark it as being a “Metered Connection”.

Once the connection is known as being “Metered” then all sorts of options start coming into play. There have been some telling signs in some of the other screenshots, but I’ve noticed this in a bunch of places which I will list out here:

  • Task Manager’s “App History” shows you how much network traffic has been sent over metered connections by each app you have installed
  • Sync Settings allows you to control whether you sync “over metered connections” to try and limit traffic when you are on a limited network connection (default no)
  • Device Manager allows you to configure whether to download “Device Software and Drivers” over metered connections or not (default no)

I’m sure there will be others (and I’ve probably missed a few) but the good news is that Metered Connections are front and centre!


So that’s all for now .. bear in mind this is just the Release Preview (build 8400) of Windows 8 so some things are bound to change and get switched about by the time the final commercial release comes around.

Anything you love about Windows 8 which I’ve not mentioned?? Please let me know in the comments 🙂

5 Little things that are annoying me about Windows 8 (Release Preview)

So Well, last week I took the plunge and got Windows 8 Release Preview (Build 8400) installed on my laptop. And so far the experience has been pretty good (very stable, very fast and no major glitches so far).

However, there are a few things that are annoying me (and if anyone knows me .. they know that its all these little things that REALLY annoy me).

[UPDATE – Please also see comparison post : 10 things I love about Windows 8 :)]

I know .. I know .. this is a release PREVIEW so it is really still in beta and a lot of things can change .. but there are some obvious flaws coming to the surface here, so without further ado, my list of..

Windows 8 (Release Preview) Pet Peeves

#1 Metro and the Taskbar

Now .. I have to admit I’m quite a fan of Metro. I have a Windows Phone 7.5 device (Nokia Lumia 800) and the metro interface is a very vibrant, quick, easy and (above all else) FUNCTIONAL interface.

However, there are some major annoyances that I’m finding impact on my day to day work, and the main one is that Metro Apps don’t appear in the Desktop Taskbar.

Now .. this might not be as bad as you think, but I spend a LOT of my working day in the Desktop mode (and therefore I have a lot of shortcuts pinned to the task bar) and like to use it for quick unobtrusive productivity notifications such as;

  • You’ve had some emails
  • Someone has started/posted to an instant chat
  • Your file has downloaded
  • Your application needs to tell you about something (i.e. it is flashing)

All of these happen at the bottom of the screen and don’t really “get in the way” .. the best bit is being able to “pin” favourite folders / tools / whatever into the taskbar button itself.

However .. a lot of default functionality runs as “Metro Apps” and the problem with Metro Apps is that they don’t run in the task bar. They go full-screen and you lose all of that notification information I described above… so far these apps include:

  • Mail (i.e. Email .. which is exactly why I don’t use it and instead use Outlook 2010)
  • Windows Reader (especially for PDF documents!)
  • Video
  • Music (although this will admittedly run in the background)

So .. just to be clear … you cannot watch a video using the Metro App while also keeping an eye on other “running apps” (such as downloads, several instant chat and email at the same time). Yes .. you can “pin” the other apps left and right .. but I don’t really want them there ALL THE TIME .. I just want to know if they are doing anything worth my attention.

#2 How the hell do you “close” a Metro App?

Yes yes .. I know .. you aren’t SUPPOSED to close them. The beauty of a Metro App is that it saves it’s state and consumes 0% CPU while it isn’t active onscreen (with a few exceptions .. such as music).

This is based on the model used for Windows Phone 7 where you don’t really need “multi-threaded” apps because for most productivity apps they aren’t doing anything if they aren’t in focus.

However … the biggest problem is that they appear in the Alt-TAB “App Switching” dialog…

In the screenshot above the Taskbar shows one program running (IE10) but there are a whole bunch of Metro Apps running in the background (including another IE10 instance in Metro)

This is going to confuse the shit out of end users ..

Now admittedly I’m thinking of my dad and my sister here.. but when you combine this fact with the apparent inability to CLOSE a Metro App ?? and you have a bit of a problem (especially with the “always on” mentality of the modern Tablet / Ultra-book device that never gets rebooted).

You can actually close them fine using the old Windows shortcut keys Alt-F4 but what percentage of the average user base knows this? (outside of developers, IT admins, tech geeks and power users??) .. I’m guess under 20% ..

#3 Move my mouse where??

Ok .. the removal of the Start Menu I could kind of stomach. I get where they are going with this and I know they want to get everyone using the new interface … but they REALLY need to put a tutorial in this for their commercial release..

The “gestures” (for want of a better word) for the main operational menus (as far as I can tell) are as follows:

  • Bottom-Left Corner, Left Click – Start Screen (yes .. the Metro one)
  • Bottom-Left Corner, Right Click – System Tools (for want of a better word .. access to Control Panel, Computer Management and such)
  • Bottom-Left Corner, move cursor up – App Switching Panel
  • Top-Left Corner, Left Click – cycle through currently running apps
  • Top-Left Corner, move cursor down – App Switching Panel
  • Top-Right Corner, move cursor down – “Charm Bar” (access to Search, Share, Start, Devices and Settings)
  • Bottom-Right Corner, move cursor up – “Charms Bar”

Now .. you can add to this list what you would “normally” find in a Windows environment

  • Bottom-Right Corner of Desktop View – Show Desktop button (which still works .. if the Charms Bar doesn’t get in the way)
  • Top-Left Corner – File Menu (when the app-switching button doesn’t get in the way)
  • Top-Right Corner – Close / Minimise buttons (when the Charms bar doesn’t get in the way)

So I really have 2 issues here. There being a lot of different (completely opposite) places to move my cursor around .. and …

How the hell am I supposed to know this ??

I’ve also got some screenshots to show you what some of this looks like..

First you move the mouse cursor bottom-left and the small slightly nasty looking “Start Screen” graphic appears (yes .. the fact that it shows the size and location of your ACTUAL pinned apps is kinda cool .. but it still looks like a Tetris puzzle from the 90’s!)

You then move your cursor “up a bit” and the “task switching” bar appears …

Similar experience for the “Charms” bar .. you move the cursor top-right (or bottom-right) to get it to show (with white icons and transparent background)

Then move cursor down a bit (or up) and the actual charms bar pins in for interactivity ..
The actual experience (once you’ve worked out what you are doing) is ok (and I’m sure in 5 years time I’ll swear its the best part of the interface) .. but expecting people to just “get” this ??
I see a lot of people struggling (especially the less technically literate!)

#4 Metro – Settings, Options and Menus – Keeping you on your toes!

This is a bit of a wail and complaint about the new Metro App interface and how they deal with things like settings, options, menus and the like.
When Windows 3.1 came out they provided a standard way of providing menus (and pretty much every single application for the next 20 years was using the good old File, Edit, View, Tools, Help menu bar). Didn’t really matter what you were using .. you knew where to look and generally where you would find it (apart from idiots who put Options / Preferences under the “Edit” menu).
However in Metro the interface seems to be a bit all over the place. You never really know where you are supposed to be looking, or how you are supposed to get there.
My new expectation is that if you right-click you get the menu bar popping up (NO idea how you’d do this with a touch-screen device .. if someone wants to tell me?)
  • Start Screen – Bottom Right
  • IE10 – All 4 corners (although click on “Add Tab” in the top panel .. new option panel for pages appears … at the bottom !!)
  • Weather – Top Left, Bottom Left and Bottom Right
  • Mail – Bottom Right
  • Maps – Bottom Right
  • Windows Store – Top Left
  • Photos – Bottom Right
  • SkyDrive – Bottom Right
  • Calendar – Bottom Left and Bottom Right
  • Video – Bottom Right
  • News – Top Left
  • Sport – Top Left
  • Wikipedia (3rd Party App) – Bottom Left
I hope you can appreciate I don’t really know where to expect to find things .. and my eye is constantly switching from top to bottom, left to right. To make this worse I can see 3rd party apps using different icons for the same thing … or the potential for worse .. the same icon for something else!! (I can see this getting MUCH MUCH worse as the Windows Store starts filling up).
Does this make it “unusable”?? not at all .. I just find it annoying.
I’m hoping that once the commercial version comes out there is some form of “standard” for layout of options and menus. I think part of the problem is that the “touch screen” friendly interface means you don’t have very much room, which is why IE10 (one of the most functional “toolbar heavy” apps you’d want to use on a touchscreen device) has to resort to using all 4 corners of the screen.

#5 Metro .. or Desktop .. ?

This is my final frustration, and I’ve already found probably 3 major apps which I use every single day .. but can’t see myself ever really using the Metro App versions;
  • Web Browser
  • E-Mail
  • Twitter / Social
And this harks back to the problems with the Task Bar (Pet Peeve #1 and not being able to close them, Pet Peeve #2).
The problem is this:
  • Only Metro Apps will post statuses to the Lock Screen (like Music / Messaging / Weather / Email .. very very similar to Windows Phone 7 experience!)
  • Only Metro Apps support Live Tiles
However (as previously discussed)
  • Metro Apps always run full screen
  • Metro Apps are “touch” oriented and feel clunky with keyboard & mouse
  • Metro Apps don’t appear in the Task Bar!
So I’ve found myself configuring a Metro App like Mail (to get Live Tile / Lock Screen) but never actually running it! I just jump over to the Desktop and fire up Outlook instead (although I’ve very keen to see what the next “Metro” version of Outlook is like!)
But certainly my biggest issue is the separation between Metro and Desktop

I have basically replicated my Start Screen in the Task Bar

This just feels plain wrong .. why am I doing this twice? I never really felt the need to do this before (because the Desktop was everything, and the Start Menu was just a place to store the shortcuts for things “I use but not very often”) but now I almost feel like I have two computers.

To make things worse you can’t set an easy “default” app either for both environments. If you are in the Metro interface and click on a URL it will open the Metro Web Browser. It doesn’t prompt you, and I can’t work out how to override this to go to Desktop either.

Why is this important?? Well .. the Metro app doesn’t have the same favourites as the desktop app! (yep .. they are as far as I can tell completely independent!)

And I can see the same kinds of things happening. If I click “New Mail” is it going to force me to use the Metro “Mail” app or can I have it auto-prompt to the desktop “Outlook” instead? And if so .. how would I configure this?

Summary …

I think at the end of the day I can sum up my Pet Peeves on Windows 8 with this:

Desktop Workstation

My laptop is basically a desktop workstation. I want to use Desktop mode .. all the time. Do I like the some of the new features of Windows 8 ??? hell yes.. the new Security features, system recovery, awesome boot times, new task manager, windows explorer functions, ISO mounting and Hyper-V integration are almost worth the upgrade alone!

Do I like some of the new Metro Features?? Hell yes …. I love the Live Tiles .. I love the lock-screen updates and the interface is pretty neat and slick  … Will I actually use any Metro Applications?? No … I will avoid them like the plague (for reasons well stated here).

My parting shot … I am a Microsoft guy through and through. If you cut me in half it probably says “Windows” in there somewhere (and definitely says “SharePoint”) and these are peeves I am prepared to live with .. but will everyone else? I see a lot of new users struggling (a LOT) and I can see businesses very rapidly choosing to NOT deploy this.

I really hope Windows 8 is a success and I don’t think it will bomb like Windows Vista did (this doesn’t have any of the performance / compatibility issues that Vista did) .. but with some of these niggling things I think it might be a bit of a damp squib.

Looking back on “going native” – why I decided to think inside the Microsoft box

I’ve been thinking about this quite a lot recently, with the rather spurious Google privacy policies, and new versions of Chrome / FireFox / Opera popping up every few weeks.. I am looking back on over 12 months of “going native”. By this I mean I have been using nothing but Microsoft technologies for all my core working functions;

  • Internet Explorer (no add-ins)
  • Bing Search
  • No Visual Studio extensions
  • Windows Phone 7

And so far .. I am absolutely loving it!

It all started with Bing and Windows Phone 7 …

This really started back in early 2011 when Bing was actually starting to come good. Their mapping service was getting some good reviews, I knew from various Microsoft events that their Search engine had undergone a pretty thorough overhaul from its early days, and I had also recently gotten myself a new (at the time) Windows Phone 7.

The default search engine for this was Bing, and I admit .. I was a very hardened Google search kinda person. I had it as my home page, I used iGoogle, and I had been doing so since its early days in 1999 (when I started at University). So I was more than a little irked to find that in Windows Phone 7 I couldn’t actually change the default search provider (like I had done with each new install of FireFox .. my default browser at the time).

This made me think;

Why do I use Google Search? Is it because it is better, or is it just because it is “what I’ve always done”?

So .. instead of installing one of the half-dozen (slightly dodgy looking) free Google apps on the marketplace, I decided to just start using Bing on a daily basis to see if I could change my habits.

Disclaimer .. I will admit I also have ulterior motives for this. I have spent the past 8 years working for Microsoft Partner firms and (as you can tell from my blog) my day-to-day working life is very heavily Microsoft influenced … so following the “all in” mantra I wanted to see if I could practice what I preach and basically use nothing but Microsoft for a while to see if there was anything lacking.

So anyway .. I started using Bing search .. and you know what? It is actually pretty damned good! I am a pretty heavy user of search (I must use browser based searching at least 10 times every day .. and on heavy days I can be looking for stuff several times an hour). This can be anything from searching for blog posts and technical articles, to using it for a quick-reference for MSDN and finding class library references when coding.

In a six month period I only felt the need to return to Google search twice, and both times I couldn’t find what I was looking for on Google either!

So I ended up pretty much converted overnight. I even started correcting people when they were suggesting a search; they said “Google it” and I said “no, Bing it instead!” (muscle memory is by far the hardest part of change!).

… what came before, is, and shall be again … moving to Internet Explorer …

So next up was the internet browser.. like I said, I was a big FireFox fan and I used to regularly install a whole raft of plug-ins and addons (including custom themes .. the whole works .. yeh, a proper geek-job!). Before that I was (in my youthful ignorance at school) a user of IE (back in the days of IE5, IE5.5 and IE6) .. so it was interesting that this has ended up going full-circle!

For those who don’t know me very well my job also involves a fair bit of client-site work, and quite a lot of the time they will give me a corporate workstation with their own corporate build (which by default was almost always IE8 and IE9). I was also in the habit of re-installing / optimising my own personal laptop as well and was getting pretty fed up of having to install a new browser and a bunch of add-ons every time I setup a new machine (which including all of the client workstations and virtual machines I was given .. this was almost every 2 weeks at one point!).

So .. I thought .. why not give Internet Explorer another go? IE9 had come out shortly after I made the switch to Bing search and it was getting some good reviews … more minimalistic design, cross-application tabs, a vastly faster javascript engine and much much better HTML and CSS support than previous versions.

So I actually un-installed FireFox (to force myself to use IE). This actually worked out quite well because the locked-down corporate workstations were all using IE as well (like I said .. I work in the Microsoft space so they were all usually standard Windows build machines).

A few weeks of painful “argh .. where has that button gone?” moments went past .. and then, I started to realise with a bit of shock, I actually quite liked it!

My RSS driven drop-down favourites worked just as well as they did in FireFox, the pop-up blocker, InPrivate Browsing, page compatibility mode and built in DOM inspector were doing the job for me functionally, and the search (which defaults to Bing .. which was another win from my earlier switch :))

Here I am 12 months later, rocking on with IE9 and looking forward to getting IE10 on my machine. The browser still seems really quick (although I’m sure having a fast laptop with tonnes of RAM helps!) and honestly I’ve found that pretty much every single website I visit works perfectly well, first time and every time!

… if you can build it, then you don’t need them to come .. Visual Studio …

Well .. by this time I was well on my way. I was now using exlusively Internet Explorer for my day-to-day work, my search engine was Bing, I was using Bing Maps (on both desktop and my phone) and life was pretty good. Every single new laptop or server I logged onto was already setup exactly how I wanted it to be (i.e. pretty much the default settings).

So I started looking at what else I was using. Visual Studio was a big one, which typically gets bolted on with all sorts of “productivity enhancement” tools (such as Re-Sharper typically being one of my default addins for a couple of years). So I wanted to try coding without this installed!

Now … I have to admit, I’ve never been totally sold on the value of Re-Sharper, but perhaps that harks back to the days of building SharePoint 2003 solutions pretty much in NotePad, creating DDF files and using batch scripts with MakeCAB commands to generate the WSP files. One of my internal concerns about everything being automated for you is that you tend to forget how things work, and why you are doing them in a certain way (but hey .. faster, more consistent development is good for the industry in other ways too).

Again … I found I was suprised by what you can actually achieve out of the box (especially with Visual Studio 2010). I perhaps found I was relying on add-on tools to do things that had been added to the core product over time, but I never realised (such as Ctrl-M, R to refactor code into a method). Sure .. there are a few small things I miss (like removing redundant “USING” statements in C#) but generally speaking 99% of my coding life I can achieve just as fast but using OOTB tools.

Again, when I move between client-site development teams this has been extremely useful. My Muscle memory has now been trained to Visual Studio 2010 in its “native” mode .. so I don’t have any of those “oops, I pressed the wrong key” moments in my first few weeks of development, which has been really nice 🙂

.. finding the time to think inside the box ..

So .. all in all a great experience, and I have to admit I feel really good that I can honestly champion Microsoft technology to my clients having been “dog-fooding” the self-same technology myself.

I now also use SkyDrive (with LiveMesh) and Office 365 for all my for my cloud needs (one for personal, one for business) although I’ll be writing another blog post about that another time.

I have found myself more and more looking at the other tools I use and finding out what “off the shelf” solutions I can use instead … I have started using Microsoft OneNote more and more (and my favourite function is Win+S to open up a “screen clipping” tool so you can copy select parts of the screen into the clipboard .. it may seem basic but I used to have another 3rd party tool to do that kind of thing).

Do I still have other kit installed? Sure I do .. I still have Chrome, Opera, Safari and FireFox (hey .. I do web development, it would be criminal if I ignored them completely!) and I do occasionally go back to Google search, or Yahoo / Ask just to find out if they are doing things differently.

But for now .. life is good … life is OOTB!

SharePoint Rockstar – a Nickelback Parody

This was inspired by a short twitter conversation with @cimares, @ToddKlindt and @usher about the #SharePoint #Rockstar and the potential for a rip off parody of the Nickelback song “Rockstar“..

Basically I felt like finishing the song off .. so without further ado .. to the tune of Nickelback’s “Rockstar” I give you ..

SharePoint Rockstar..

I’m through with coding in line
And unghosting everything
I’m using SharePoint Designer
And I’m never gonna win
The solution didn’t turn out
Quite the way I want it to be
(Tell me what you want)

I want a brand new blog,
with the comments all filled
And a server room I can play baseball in
And a laptop full of software that
I got for free
(So what you need?)

I’ll need a Skype account that’s got no limit
A huge laptop with an SSD in it
Gonna get my own
parking space at TVP
(Been there, done that)

I want to get an invite to a conference pass
My own seat up in Business Class,
Somewhere between Spence and
Steve Smith is fine for me
(So how you gonna do it?)

I’m gonna tweet like made, adopt SharePoint zen
I’ll use the hashtag  #SP2010

‘Cause we all just wanna be big rockstars
Fixing errors in the logs that are just bizarre
I code so much I got RSI, but my User Profile Service gonna start first time!
And we’ll hang out in the SharePint bar
In the VIP with the SharePoint stars
Every ITPro and coders
gonna wind up there
With our free vendor shirts
That we just won’t wear
Hey I wanna be a SharePoint rockstar
Hey I wanna be a SharePoint rockstar

Wanna be great like Eric Schupps but without the hat
Pass every single exam I’ve sat
Talk at the User Group
So I can get my drinks for free
(I’ll have a SharePint on the house!)

I’m gonna get the latest version
Setup on my VM
Get a free Ultimate key to MSDN
Gonna date a designer
who builds all my sites for free
(so how you gonna do it?)

I’m gonna tweet like mad, adopt SharePoint zen
I’ll use the hashtag  #SP2010

‘Cause we all just wanna be big rockstars
Fixing errors in the logs that are just bizarre
I code so much I got RSI, but my User Profile Service gonna start first time!
And we’ll hang out in the SharePint bar
In the VIP with the SharePoint stars
Every ITPro and coders
gonna wind up there
With our free vendor shirts
That we just won’t wear

And we’ll hang out in the speaker rooms
With all the MVPs and whoever is cool
I’ll build you anything with cascading styles
Everybody’s got a contractor on speed dial

Hey I wanna be a SharePoint rockstar

I’ll annoy QA by writing messy code
I’ll deploy my solutions in debug mode

I’ll get an off-shore team to write all night long
Then I’ll code it again because they’ll get it all wrong ..

‘Cause we all just wanna be big rockstars
Fixing errors in the logs that are just bizarre
I code so much I got RSI, but my User Profile Service gonna start first time!
And we’ll hang out in the SharePint bar
In the VIP with the SharePoint stars
Every ITPro and coders
gonna wind up there
With our free vendor shirts
That we just won’t wear

And we’ll hang out in the speaker rooms
With all the MVPs and whoever is cool
I’ll build you anything with cascading styles
Everybody’s got a contractor on speed dial

Hey I wanna be a SharePoint rockstar
Hey I wanna be a SharePoint rockstar

21 Things I would do if I was an evil SharePoint overlord!

  1. All site collections will be deployed with site collection quotas allowing only 1 sandbox resource point
  2. The Site collection storage limit warning will be set at 1mb for My Sites with the entire company set as the warning email address
  3. I will insist that all site collections are created with their own host name URL. This will force any BI tools to require new SPNs for Kerberos configuration
  4. Ideally, each of these sites will have their own Web Application, and their own application pool, which will force them to buy new servers so keeping within the “10 application pools per server” guidelines which I will give them
  5. Every web application will have a custom service connection proxy group, so every time a new service application is created they will have to manually add it to each web application’s custom proxy group
  6. All databases will be created through Powershell by concatenating random GUIDS (in addition to the ones SharePoint creates automatically)
  7. While developing, all of my API classes will be public with internal constructors
  8. All default site content will be deployed using HTML encoded XML, with multiple unecessary nested divs and empty spans.
  9. Feature Stapling will be banned .. as will Content Types
  10. I will configure all Diagnostics Log categories to “Verbose”, disable flood protection and only keep log files for 1 day, making it a painful and arduous task to troubleshoot issues.
  11. Each SharePoint server will install to a non-default directory. This will be different for each server to keep the admin team on their toes.
  12. I will include a script which adds expiration policies to the “Document” content type in each site collection .. this will bombard the author with emails if they don’t update their documents every 2 weeks, therefore keeping the content fresh
  13. SharePoint Designer will be unblocked, and its usage will be encouraged!
  14. The User Profile database will be configured to crawl every 2 minutes .. keeping the process continually running so no-one can modify the connections
  15. For contrast, the default Search content source will only index User Profile content every 56 hours .. so no-one can be exactly sure when it will be updated
  16. Each web application will be given different URLs for each department. IIS bindings will be put in place, but no alternate access mappings so they cannot share links or embedded urls with each other.
  17. The default zone will be set as Read Only via a policy so that items found in search results cannot be edited. there will be an alternate URL, but access mappings won’t exist so users will have to swap it out manually
  18. The reply-to email address for all notificatiosn will be set as the company switchboard.
  19. All custom web parts will, where possible, be deployed as Farm Features .. so that everyone can see them, but will only be configured to work on specific sites.
  20. We will not have specific servers .. all farm servers will run all of the services. I will convince the IT team that this makes their lives easier as they only need 1 server spec when buying new machines.
  21. I will set the qouta of the my site host to 10MB so that only the first few users will be able to upload their profile picture.

Suggestions are welcome in the comments 🙂

« Older Entries