Category Archives: Windows 10

The Script and ESP8266 Code for Beginners

I’m often asked about setting up MQTT, Node-Red etc. on the likes of Raspberry Pi, NanoPi or similar, with a view to controlling ESP8266 devices.

Novice readers start here

Usually it is difficult for me to see this from a beginner perspective, but having spent 2 months in hospital thanks to an untimely stroke from which I’m still recovering, 4 months after the event, I recently found myself doing new installs without the benefit of doing this stuff every day. I am just SO glad I blog everything.

Array of Raspberry PIs

Continue reading The Script and ESP8266 Code for Beginners


Windows 10–the Missing bits

Slight diversion as I’ve just been upgrading my PCs to Windows 10 and a friend of mine pointed me to changes as against previous versions – i.e. what’s missing from Windows 10.

Here I’ll take a look and give my comments. Firstly I should say as a hardware-oriented guy I have lots of things stuck into my PC like FTDIs and other SUB gadgets and I have noticed absolutely no difference from Windows 8.1 – i.e. everything still works – so that’s a good start.

So – automatic updates – apparently home users will be forced to take updates – that’s not a bad idea IMHO – the amount of people I know who don’t trust Microsoft, refuse all updates then wonder why their PC has a collapsed through nasties… if it is that important, make sure you get the PRO version or better where the option will still remain.

Media Centre (or Center as they call it) is also gone. I don’t know about you but I can’t remember the last time I turned that on – if I want something like that I use Plex or similar.

No more Hearts… shocking – but there are many alternatives out there.

Desktop gadgets – surely that was abandoned in Windows 8.

No more floppy disks – seriously – do people still use floppy disks? DVDs apparently now need separate playback software. I’m assuming VLC will do that job. I don’t know about you but I install VLC by default on any new machine anyway because the Microsoft Media Player is/was pants.

And finally – Edge – the new browser. I’m guessing most people in here hated Internet Explorer anyway. I’ve not done exhaustive tests but Edge looks fine to me. However I’ll continue to use Google for browsing and search engine as always.

Did I miss any major omissions in Windows 10?

I DO like the new menu – I was using POKKI to replace the hated Windows 8 menu but that just is not necessary any more. A good job I reckon.


Raspberry Pi 2 Fast Enough?

The Raspberry Pi is a nice, cheap little computer but for me it has never been fast enough – I’m not interested in making another media server (I have a DISKSTATION which does that just fine) but as I’ve recently been working with MQTT in my home control setup, I did think it would be nice to have an MQTT broker and some ability to send commands to it in one little reliable box. 

Repeated messages out there indicate that the Raspberry Pi is pushing it’s luck to do all of that at high speed as it approaches the limits of speed (and possibly even memory).

What I’ve been looking for is the same thing with much more memory and much more speed. Well, how does (claimed) 6* more speed and twice the memory sound – for the same price?

I’m sure those who have recently purchased the original Raspberry Pi will have a million reasons why it’s not necessary – and I feel sorry for them but now it looks like the Raspberry Pi II (2) at long last has the power I need.

I wonder how long it will take before the price settles to what we would expect – I have NO doubt that early copies will be expensive – that tends to happen in Britain.

And as for Windows 10 – apparently Microsoft will make this available for free – that could be desperation or it could be EXTREMELY good marketing – for those who don’t really want to get into Linux – Windows development + Windows in the embedded code… has to be some mileage there.

More on this when my board turns up!