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Daily Computer News and Rumors

February 23-29 2004

About News and Rumors. InfoHQ Computer News and Rumors is a daily column. It features news coverage of new PC and Mac computer hardware and software, Internet news, and other technical news items.
Every Sunday, News and Rumors features "Sunday Shopping Watch", which is a comparison and analysis of Sunday computer store advertisements.
The Daily Computer News and Rumors is an archived column, so feel free to review previous week's or month's computer news. Previous Daily Computer News articles can also be searched, by using our site search feature found in the top and bottom menu bar.

InfoHQ Daily Computer News and Rumors Article Index
Date
(Click on story to read, use your Browser's back button to return to this index.)
Feb 29 Sunday Shopping Watch
Feb 27 Intel COO Outlines Wireless Strategy at 3GSM World Congress
Feb 27 MX Logic Warns MyDoom.f Mass Mailing Worm Attempts to Advance Political Agenda
Feb 27 Toshiba Introduces Affordable Notebook PC for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
Feb 27 Gartner Forecasts Worldwide Semiconductor Revenue to Increase 23 Percent in 2004
Feb 27 InterVideo WinDVD Hits 75 Million Users
Feb 26 Intel And Sony Music Put PC-Quality Music Videos In The Palm Of Your Hand
Feb 26 New AMD Opteron Processor-Based HP ProLiant Servers
Feb 26 Sharp Introduces Stylish 19-inch LCD Display With 16ms Response Time
Feb 26 Dual-Band Wi-Fi Networking Equipment and Multimedia Applications Will Continue to Spur Consumer Wi-Fi Growth
Feb 26 ''Remote Insecurity'' Report Shows Business Travelers are More Vulnerable than Ever to Password Theft
Feb 25 IBM, Dutch Scientists to Explore First Moments of Universe
Feb 25 U.S. Small and Medium Businesses Rank Dell the Price and Quality Leader
Feb 25 Three Affordable New Canon Mini DV Megapixel Camcorders
Feb 25 Authenex Introduces HDLock to Prevent Unathorized Access to Hard Drives
Feb 25 Sendmail Drives Adoption of Sender Authentication
Feb 24 Intel's Global Advertising Focuses on Mobile PC Consumers
Feb 24 Micron Samples Industry's First 4GB DDR2 Registered DIMMS
Feb 24 Dell Introduces New PowerEdge Servers
Feb 24 CyberGuard Unveils the Future of Enterprise Security
Feb 24 ``Unreal Tournament 2004'' Demo Becomes One of the Most Popular Game Downloads of All Time
Feb 23 America Online Announces New Lawsuit against 'Sunshine State Spammers'
Feb 23 ATI works with Intel and Pinnacle Systems to use PCI Express Technology
Feb 23 WiMedia Radio Selected Platform for Wireless Ultra-Wideband Personal Area Networks
Feb 23 US Customer Satisfaction Highest Since 1995, Fueling Consumer Demand
Feb 23 Gartner Says The Number of Hot Spot Users Worldwide to Triple in 2004

 

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Feb 29 - Sunday Shopping Watch.

Best Sunday Deals - See our Best Sunday Ad Deals Table below for specific system prices.

Weekly Comparison. Not a weekend of big sales. They are still some good desktop deals, but laptops have returned to regular prices.

This Sunday's Special Discounts and Financing. In addition to sales on specific items, the following store-wide sales are advertised this week. (Note that these ads are for the Dayton, Ohio area. Prices or offerings may be different where you live.)

Best Buy is offering 18 month no-interest financing on all desktop packages and laptops, and $150 mail-in rebate on advertised laptops and desktop packages.
Circuit City is offering 12 months no interest financing, and up to $150 mail-in rebates on advertised desktop packages and notebooks.
Office Depot has rebates on advertised PCs.
CompUSA has no store-wide promotions on computers this Sunday.
Staples has no store-wide promotions this Sunday.
Compare to Online Prices - Compare the Sunday ad prices to those being offered at DealTime, it searches over 160 online computer stores.

InfoHQ Related Shopping Pages

Shopping Alerts - Our latest shopping advisories on buying digital cameras and camcorders, desktop computers, laptops, and other computer items.

Windows XP Upgrade Guide - All about upgrading to Windows XP.

What You Need to Know About Dial-up Internet Service Rebates - The pros and cons of 'free' Internet service deals. Also see our latest InfoHQ Tech Watch Newsletter; Free PC and Free Internet Deals.     

Definitions. A complete desktop system/package/complete package is defined as a computer with monitor and printer or scanner.
A build-to-order system is customized at the retailer and then ordered from a computer manufacturer. In addition to the computer's stated price, you still pay sales tax and shipping charges (if you order direct from the vendor without going through the chain store, you may not have to pay sales tax and you could get a better warranty).

Caution about advertised prices. When reading advertisements, read the fine print of the ad to make sure you know what is being advertised and what it cost. For example, many advertisers will show a complete system with computer, monitor, and printer but advertise a price for the computer only.

* Prices discussed in this article. We report prices after rebates and discounts are subtracted.
Items highlighted in Black are good deals.
Items highlighted in Red means prices have gone up and the system is not a good buy this week.
Items in normal text means prices are about the same as the previous weeks.

Best Sunday Ad Deals
Category
Product Description
Price* (see above)
Prices up or Down this Week
Store
1. Best Celeron Deal
eMachines 2.6 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$389
-
Best Buy
2. Best Celeron Deal
eMachines 2.8 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$469
-
Circuit City
Best Pentium 4 System
Sony 3.0 GHz Pentium 4 complete system with HT Technology, 15 inch flat panel, and DVD-RW
$1269
-
Best Buy
1. Best AMD Athlon XP System
Compaq Athlon 2800+ complete system with 17 inch monitor
$639
+$20
Circuit City
2. Best AMD Athlon XP System
HP Athlon 3000+ complete system with 17 inch monitor and DVD-RW drive
$719
-
Best Buy
3. Best AMD Athlon XP System
HP Athlon 3200+ complete system with 17 inch monitor and DVD-RW
$849
-
CompUSA
Best AMD Athlon 64 System
None Advertised
     
1. Best Low-cost Laptop
HP Athlon 2500+ with DVD/CD-RW
$849
-
Best Buy, Office Depot
1. Best Low-cost Laptop
Toshiba 2.6 GHz Celeron with DVD/CD-RW
$849
-
Circuit City
1. Best High-end Notebook
Toshiba widescreen Centrino 1.4 GHz with DVD/CD-RW
$1449
-
CompUSA
2. Best High-end Notebook
Compaq widescreen Centrino 1.4 GHz with DVD/CD-RW
$1449
-
Circuit City
3. Best High-end Notebook
HP widescreen Pentium 4 3.06 GHz with Hyper Threading, and DVD-RW
$1849
-
Best Buy
Peripherals and Software
Best Sunday Deal
Seagate 120 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$69
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Seagate 160 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$79
(after rebates)
-$10
CompUSA
Best Sunday Deal
Western Digital 250 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$139
(after rebates)
-
Circuit City
Best Sunday Deal
ATI Radeon 9800XT 256 MB
$399
(after rebates)
-
CompUSA
Best Sunday Deal
Sony 52X CD-RW
$49
(after rebates)
-
Circuit City, Office Depot
Best Sunday Deal
TDK 8X DVD-RW
$169
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy

 

InfoHQ Quick Jumps to Upgrades from DealTime - Click to check on latest prices
Video Cards ATI Radeon
  GeForce4 FX
Hard Drives Maxtor
  Western Digital
  Seagate
CD-RW Drives 40x/48x Write Speed
DVD-RW Drives DVD+RW/CD-RW
CPUs All AMD Athlon XP CPUs
  All Intel Pentium 4 CPUs
Antivirus Software All Manufacturers
Firewall Software All Manufacturers
All Other Products DealTime

 

Additional Information. For additional technical information, advice on how to buy a laptop or desktop, and vendor and manufacturer links, please see our Computer Buying Advice page.

About Sunday Shopping Watch. Sunday Shopping Watch appears every Sunday (except some holidays like Easter and Christmas) in our News and Rumors column. It is a review of local (Dayton, Ohio) computer chain store advertisements. While we can not guarantee your local chain store has the same items, this article can help you make informed buying decisions.

Feb 27 - Intel COO Outlines Wireless Strategy at 3GSM World Congress. Otellini Predicts Co-existence of Multiple Broadband Wireless Technologies, Shows New Multi-Mode Reference Platform for Cell Phones
Intel President and COO Paul Otellini today outlined Intel's plans for the growing wireless silicon market, focusing on the co-existence of broadband wireless technologies and the impact of Moore's Law on the cellular and handheld market segments. Otellini was speaking at the 3GSM World Congress 2004, the wireless industry's largest annual event.

"The wireless industry is evolving from a web of independent networks into a single, integrated wireless network with multiple standards, and no single standard is sufficient anymore," Otellini said. "There won't be a battle of competing technologies. It will be a requirement that Wi-Fi, WiMAX, and 3G coexist; and that coexistence is going to enable a host of exciting new applications and business models."

At 3GSM Intel also disclosed details of its next generation cellular and baseband processors, including a dual mode UMTS/wide-band CDMA (WCDMA) solution with an advanced receiver architecture that helps maintain higher quality signals and fewer dropped calls for phones operating on 3G networks. The upcoming family of processors, code-named Hermon, also features full videoconferencing capability.

During his keynote address, Otellini discussed how Moore's Law would impact the cellular and handheld market segments, and said the move to standards-based silicon would enable carriers and handset makers to lower costs and speed time-to-market capabilities. He also discussed the industry transition to modular communications infrastructure based on standards such as the Advanced Telecommunications and Computing Architecture (ATCA) specification and Intel processing technology.

"Our track record of innovation and integration -- putting more functionality in a smaller footprint -- will have a profound effect on these market segments where cost is a critical factor," Otellini said. As part of the discussion on Moore's Law, Otellini outlined some of Intel's research efforts in software-driven radio and reiterated the company's long-term vision to eventually put multi-protocol radios on to every chip it builds.

He also unveiled a new three-radio reference design for cell phones with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GSM/GPRS capability built-in, running Intel's latest applications processor and Intel StrataFlash(R) memory. The phone supports multiple full-featured operating systems, plays MP3 music files with PC-quality sound, and includes a 1.3 mega pixel digital camera for pictures and video. Intel's reference design offers handset makers who want to provide cell phones capable of accessing high-speed wireless networks -- Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or 2.5G -- a complete platform to work from.

Otellini concluded his remarks by focusing on the significant WiMAX opportunity over the next several years. He predicted a WiMAX "inflection point" in the 2006-2008 timeframe similar to what happened with Wi-Fi over the past few years, and said WiMAX capability would be available in notebook computers by 2006, followed by handsets in 2007.

Intel is developing standardized, high-performance silicon to address all of the multiple broadband wireless technologies, as well as a range of products for modular communications networks that will be crucial in the deployment of broadband wireless. It will begin shipping its first WiMAX chips later this year.

Industry Support

In related news at 3GSM, Siemens Information and Communication Mobile Group announced the introduction of a new standards-based telecom architecture designed to speed development time and simplify mobile service deployment for carriers. The platform is based on the ATCA specification and will be developed using compute and network processors from Intel.
In addition, Intel said ASUSTek, one of the leading manufacturers in Taiwan, will develop a new series of feature phones based on Intel's PXA800F cellular processor, and new smart phones based on Intel's Hermon processors as well as Intel's next generation applications processor.
Also, Intel and Orange, a leader in mobile communications and mobile-based services and applications, said they will work together to bring a number of next-generation cell phones to market with compelling wireless applications and services.

Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com.

Feb 27 - MX Logic Warns MyDoom.f Mass Mailing Worm Attempts to Advance Political Agenda. MX Logic, Inc., a leading provider of innovative email defense solutions that ensure email protection and security for enterprises, service providers, government organizations, resellers and their customers, today announced that MyDoom.f, a variant of the virulent MyDoom -- the fastest propagating mass mailing worm in history, has reached a critical threat level, with one in every 46 emails infected.

"While MyDoom.f has not come close to the unprecedented propagation rate of its predecessor -- MyDoom/Novarg -- it does represent a growing trend of leveraging the vast population of insecure broadband PCs as weapons for distributed denial of service attacks to further a political agenda," said Scott Chasin, chief technology officer, MX Logic.
"This latest variant is a typical aftershock that usually occurs after a massive worm infection, such as what we saw with the original MyDoom. However, what is interesting about these latest worm trends is that they are very politically motivated. More than your curious teenage hacker at work; these attacks are stemming from groups seeking to make a statement on some of today's most controversial technology issues."

MX Logic first spotted MyDoom.f on Monday, Feb. 23, 2004, and began blocking the email on behalf of its more than 1,000 enterprise and service provider customers immediately. The mass mailing worm uses a variety of subject lines and arrives in an inbox as a .zip or .bat file.
When the attachment is opened, the computer plants a "backdoor" program that lets the worm author send commands to the infected machine, possibly instructing the worm to distribute more infected email or enable IP spoofing capabilities. MyDoom.f has excluded certain domains from its attack -- Panda, Sophos, Hotmail, MSN, .gov and .mil. The MyDoom.f worm is targeting the Web sites of Microsoft and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

On an average day, MX Logic's Threat Center blocks more than 9,000 instances of various email viruses and worms. During the height of the initial MyDoom mass mailing worm outbreak in late January, MX Logic's Threat Center saw 1,200 MyDoom infected emails per second. MX Logic anticipates that MyDoom.f will peak over the upcoming weekend, when email users log onto their home PCs, where security measures are typically less rigorous than in a corporate environment.

For more information, visit www.mxlogic.com.

Feb 27 - Toshiba Introduces Affordable Notebook PC for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses. Toshiba's Digital Products Division (DPD) today introduced the Satellite(R) A40-S270 wireless notebook PC designed for small and medium-sized businesses and educational customers looking for an affordable and feature-rich mobile PC.
Priced at $1,429, the new offering includes Microsoft(R) OneNote(TM) 2003 digital note-taking program allowing mobile professionals to easily capture, organize, share and manage data for maximum productivity.

The Satellite A40-S270 also features as an option the Microsoft Office XP Small Business Edition 2003 software for added effectiveness in completing business tasks such as tracking customer activities and developing marketing/sales materials.

Newly designed in a sleek blue chassis, the Satellite A40-S270 is ready to handle power-intensive business tasks such as multimedia presentations and spreadsheets while allowing users to remain mobile. For added flexibility and productivity, the new unit features integrated Wi-Fi(R) (802.11g) wireless connectivity allowing users to keep competitive by staying connected to employees, the secured network, customers and suppliers in or out of their organization.

Availability

The Satellite A40-S270 is available for immediate purchase via Toshiba's traditional distribution channels, VARs, shoptoshiba.com and mail order channels.

Feb 27 - Gartner Forecasts Worldwide Semiconductor Revenue to Increase 23 Percent in 2004. The worldwide semiconductor industry continues to gain momentum from last year, and worldwide semiconductor revenue is projected to reach $217 billion in 2004, a 22.6 percent increase from 2003, according to preliminary quarterly estimates by Gartner, Inc.

"A tighter supply environment in 2004 will bring increased revenue and profitability to the industry, and as semiconductor vendor financials improve, capital spending should increase," said Richard Gordon, research vice president for Gartner. "Overall fab utilization is currently running in excess of 95 percent, which is about 10 points higher than the traditional trigger point for additional capital spending in the industry."

The 2004 forecast is deliberately conservative. Even though many of the traditional supply side fundamentals point to strong growth, Gartner analysts said there are some doubts about the demand side of the market. There is a concern whether consumers will continue to spend on electronics goods while businesses are still being cautious about investing in IT.

"However, price stability and lengthening lead times are already impacting some device markets, such as memories, and should this become more pervasive, revenue growth could easily exceed 30 percent," Gordon said.

Increased capital spending in 2004 inevitably will mean increased manufacturing capacity in 2005, which will lead to an easing of supply constraints, shorter lead times and softer pricing. However, Gartner analysts said 2005 still represents the peak year in the forthcoming industry up cycle, with revenue forecast to exceed $245 billion . By 2006, over-capacity will drive device pricing lower, resulting in a mild revenue decline of 2.3 percent.

Over the past two years, consumer spending, specifically on digital cellular handsets and digital consumer electronics, has driven semiconductor demand. More recently, additional semiconductor demand has been fueled by a PC upgrade cycle, especially in the enterprise market. As the global economic recovery continues to gather pace, a widespread improvement in semiconductor demand is expected across all application segments, especially in the important wired communications sector.

More information on Gartner's semiconductor research can be found in the Gartner Semiconductor Focus Area at www.gartner.com/semiconductors.

Feb 27 - InterVideo WinDVD Hits 75 Million Users. InterVideo, Inc. (Nasdaq:IVII), announced today that more than 75 million copies of WinDVD(R), the leading software for watching DVDs on a PC, have been sold worldwide since it was launched in 1999.
Winner of more than a dozen editor's choice awards in the U.S. and around the globe, WinDVD 5 is now available in two versions: WinDVD Gold 5, the standard consumer edition; and WinDVD Platinum 5, InterVideo's high-end version with enhanced video and multi-channel audio capabilities.

"WinDVD's success is an ongoing team effort," said Steve Ro, founder and CEO of InterVideo. "We knew we had a winner in 1999 and have continued to advance the software DVD player industry by adding new technologies and new features that consumers want. Every employee at every InterVideo facility around the globe deserves a personal thank you for their dedication and contribution. We're all looking forward to the next milestone."

WinDVD was among the first DVD players to include DivX(R) support and Dolby(R) Virtual Speaker Technology and Dolby Headphone Technology for replicating rich, surround sound audio over only two speakers. Other WinDVD features include Advanced Screen Capture options that let users grab screen shots for emailing or setting as wallpaper, InterVideo's proprietary Time-stretching technology that lets users watch a movie in the time they have, and TV-out support that combines with a TV-out board for using a PC as a living room DVD player. With Video Desktop, users can watch movies while working and checking their email.

Both the Gold and Platinum versions of WinDVD 5 include InterVideo Mobile Technology to help users extend the battery life and playback time of mobile PCs featuring Intel(R)'s new Centrino(TM) mobile technology and other Intel notebook processors.

With InterVideo's optional DVD-Audio Add-on Pack, users can easily navigate DVD-Audio discs and enjoy the extra features of the format such as higher-quality audio, slide shows, browseable pictures and more.

WinDVD 5's new InterActual Add-on Pack enables users to enjoy the pristine resolution enabled by Microsoft(R) Windows Media(R) 9 Series (WMV HD). In addition to playback support for the high-definition DVD discs, the software provides access to features such as playback tracks, games, printables and photo galleries. When videos enhanced with Web links are played, WinDVD users will have transparent access to interactive content that developers can regularly update such as commentaries, historical backgrounders and online contests.

Pricing, Availability

InterVideo markets WinDVD 5 to consumers and hardware OEMs, including manufacturers of PCs, video cards, camcorders, disk drives and consumer electronics products. It can be used with PC and laptop computers running Windows(R) 98/2000/Me/XP.

WinDVD 5 is available at InterVideo's web site at www.intervideo.com and at retail outlets around the world. Suggested list prices are $49.95 for WinDVD Gold 5 and $69.95 for WinDVD Platinum 5. Available at InterVideo's web site, the DVD-Audio Add-on Pack is priced at $39.95 and the InterActual Add-on Pack is priced at $19.95.

Visit the company's Web site at www.intervideo.com.

Feb 26 - Intel And Sony Music Put PC-Quality Music Videos In The Palm Of Your Hand. Intel Corporation and Sony Music Entertainment (SMEI) today announced the availability of a new application and service as a result of the strategic relationship announced last October by the two companies.

Intel and SMEI have created a mobile high-quality music video application that enables users to access "short form" music videos and other Sony Music Entertainment content for playback on powerful cellphones and PDAs powered by Intel applications and cellular processors. The application and related support infrastructure will be available to carriers and OEMs worldwide in the second quarter on Intel processor-based cellphones running Microsoft® Windows Mobile Smartphone 2002 and 2003.

"Music ringtones and mastertones have quickly become popular apps for mobile devices," said Sam Arditi, Co- General Manager of Intel's Cellular and Handheld Group. "Up to now, the quality of mobile video hasn't been great, but with this new application, consumers can enjoy a whole new world of high-quality video entertainment on their cellphones and PDAs."

The new mobile music video application, developed by Intel, Sony Music and Emuzed, a third-party applications developer, will be demonstrated at the Intel booth in Hall 4, Stand K24 and The Music Portal demo in Hall 2, Stand D067 at 3GSM World Congress in Cannes, France during the week of February 23rd. The demonstration will feature premium content pre-optimized, formatted and provided by Sony Music.

"This new application represents the first fruit of our collaborative labors, and we believe it will set a new standard for mobile wireless video," remarked Thomas Gewecke, Senior Vice President, Business Development, Sony Music Digital Services . "Through this relationship with Intel we are looking to realize the many capabilities inherent in Intel's Personal Internet Client Architecture, and by optimizing our products for this powerful platform, hope to deliver to customers a truly compelling end-user experience."

When this application is activated it shows a "splash page." On the main page the category browser presents users with content categories such as What's New, Hot Videos, Interviews and Legends of Music, which can be selected with the handset's navigational buttons or joystick. The user can then select a content category to navigate the list of video content available. The video detail page displays the name of the artist, the name of the song, and a customized call to action [CAT] message, for example, "Jennifer Lopez's new record The Reel Me in stores now."

About Intel

Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com.

Feb 26 - New AMD Opteron Processor-Based HP ProLiant Servers. HP (NYSE:HPQ)(Nasdaq:HPQ) and AMD today announced an expanded collaboration to broaden HP's standards-based server portfolio with the introduction of AMD Opteron(TM) processor-based systems in the HP ProLiant server family. The companies have agreed to work together to drive next-generation server capabilities through a multi-year purchasing, marketing and technology collaboration agreement.

"HP's Adaptive Enterprise strategy assures customers that they will have the broadest choice of industry standard-based platforms to meet their evolving business needs," said Brad Anderson, senior vice president and general manager, Industry Standard Servers, HP. "The AMD Opteron processor is an evolution of current x86 architectures that can provide immediate performance advantages in 32- bit environments, accelerate ISV adoption and further advance the future of 64-bit ecosystems."

"HP, the market leader for servers, has chosen the AMD Opteron processor to help expand their product offerings," said Marty Seyer, vice president and general manager, Microprocessor Business Unit, AMD. "Their decision to incorporate AMD Opteron processors in the ProLiant family confirms AMD's momentum in the enterprise and HP's commitment to providing customers more choice on industry-standard platforms."

As part of today's announcement, HP introduced new industry-standard ProLiant servers featuring the AMD Opteron processor, including the ProLiant DL145, a two- processor server, and DL585, a four-processor workhorse, as well as plans for future blade servers (for details, see HP news release entitled, "HP Broadens Customer Choice with Expansion of Industry-leading Standards-based Server Portfolio").

"Yahoo! is pleased to see HP ProLiant servers using the AMD Opteron processor. With all of the dependability and functionality we expect from the ProLiant line, this is a welcome addition that makes a lot of sense for Yahoo!," said Kevin Timmons, senior director of Operations, Yahoo!.

"We are very excited by HP's enhancement of its HPC roadmap by the addition of AMD Opteron processor-based ProLiant server nodes for large-scale clusters," said Mike Levine and Ralph Roskies, co-scientific directors, Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center. "By providing a choice of HPC solutions, based on both ProLiant and Integrity servers, HP is well-positioned to maintain its leadership in HPC."

Working with AMD expands HP's unique ability to deliver industry-standard solutions to all computing tiers of the data center. With its full line of ProLiant servers, HP provides customers extensive value, support and technical expertise. AMD Opteron processor-based ProLiant servers offer customers cutting-edge 32- and 64-bit solutions that position HP for accelerated growth in specific markets, including high-performance computing (HPC) applications, memory-intensive applications and blade servers.

Building on its new AMD Opteron processor-based HP ProLiant servers, HP's extensive portfolio of infrastructure solutions delivers consistency across management, storage, operating system, solutions and professional services. Ideal for applications needing expanded memory capabilities and outstanding price/performance, AMD64 technology allows customers to leverage one platform for both 32-bit and sophisticated 64-bit applications.

Complementary with HP's existing ProLiant, Integrity and NonStop server offerings, the AMD Opteron processor is designed to deliver high-performance server and workstation solutions for today's most demanding enterprise applications. Key AMD Opteron processor innovations include an integrated memory controller, which reduces memory latency, and HyperTransport(TM) technology, which increases overall performance by removing or reducing processor-to-processor and input/output bottlenecks, increasing bandwidth and enabling the processor to use system memory more efficiently in high-end multiprocessor systems.

More information about HP ProLiant servers is available at www.hp.com.

Feb 26 - Sharp Introduces Stylish 19-inch LCD Display With 16ms Response Time. Sharp Systems of America, a division of Sharp Electronics Corporation, today announced a new addition to its LCD monitor line-up aimed at business and consumer users.

The stylish 19-inch LL-191A LCD monitor is a bright SXGA (1,280 x 1,024 dots) LCD display that can achieve a high response time of 16ms, making the unit ideal for video and design applications. The monitor's elegant look and narrow frame design requires less setup space, maximizing the users desktop space, while providing a generous amount of display space for computing applications.

"The stylish LL-191A offers users a large screen in a surprisingly narrow design without compromising on important technological aspects needed in a professional quality display," said Terry Hanly, product marketing manager for Sharp Systems of America. "With a 16ms response time, the LL-191A is at the top of its class in video performance, and the 1.3 megapixel SXGA display provides users with a great quality display for a wide range of applications."

The LL-191A is available in black and white and features a long life (approximately 50,000 hours) backlight. Available immediately, the LL-191A has an estimated street price of $699. Sharp LCDs are available immediately through Sharp directly (http://store.sharpsystems.com), or through Sharp's network of retail partners and reseller channels.

Feb 26 - Dual-Band Wi-Fi Networking Equipment and Multimedia Applications Will Continue to Spur Consumer Wi-Fi Growth. Newer Wi-Fi equipment and innovative applications for Wi-Fi will continue to drive growth for the Wi-Fi industry. During 2009, 95 million Wi-Fi networking equipment devices will be shipped, according to technology research firm ABI.

While 802.11b was the most popular protocol in 2003, 802.11g will surpass it in 2004. Sales of 802.11g equipment are already greater than that of 802.11b, since consumers tend to choose products with the fastest speeds. This includes standard and standards-plus equipment which support higher speeds with proprietary methods. Standards-plus products work at standard Wi-Fi data rates when used with equipment from other manufacturers that do not use the same proprietary technology.

These rapid changes are occurring for multiple reasons. Broadband adoption is one, as the number of people with broadband connections keeps growing. People with DSL and cable modems have plenty of bandwidth to share among multiple computers, and wireless networking enhances the computing experience. The year 2005 will see more 802.11a/g shipments than that for 802.11g.
While dual-band Wi-Fi access points and adapters with standard speeds of 54Mbps may seem unnecessary or even overkill, new applications will make use of those speeds. Reductions in production costs have enabled 802.11g average selling prices to fall closer to that of 802.11b. The same will occur with 802.11a/g.

"Advances in production technology have enabled Wi-Fi IC vendors to reduce the costs of producing these chips," states Phil Solis, ABI senior analyst. "ASPs for 802.11a/g ICs will naturally remain higher than that of 802.11g, but that gap will narrow over time."

While data networking and the sharing of broadband access is the obvious use, multimedia applications will truly leverage the potential of Wi-Fi networks. "Quality of service enhancements via 802.11e will prioritize streaming video from a DVD player to a plasma display, for example, over web browsing from a computer. Also, a reduction of cables and wires will be more than welcome in the home," says Solis.

ABI is a N.Y.-based technology market research firm founded in 1990. ABI publishes market research and technology intelligence on the wireless, automotive, electronics, broadband and energy industries. Details can be found on the web at www.abiresearch.com.

Feb 26 - ''Remote Insecurity'' Report Shows Business Travelers are More Vulnerable than Ever to Password Theft. Secure Computing Corporation (NASDAQ:SCUR), the experts in securing connections between people, applications, and networks(TM), today announced the release of a new report, "Remote Insecurity: How Business Travelers Risk Exposing Their Companies When Remotely Accessing Company Networks."

The report was prepared by respected independent security consultant Rodney Thayer of Canola/Jones Internet Investigations in the San Francisco Bay Area, and documents the serious risks of password theft that business travelers encounter when using the Internet in hotels, cafes, airports, and trade show kiosks. The full report is available at www.securecomputing.com.

Posing as a business traveler, Thayer tested the possibility of password theft in multiple locations such as an Internet kiosk in an airport, an Internet cafe, as well as an in-room hotel broadband network, and wireless access at a coffee shop. Thayer found multiple methods available to cyber-criminals that could be used to steal passwords and corporate information.

Wireless access points are especially vulnerable to "sniffing," Thayer found. Tests conducted at an airport Internet cafe and at a popular chain of coffee shops showed that unencrypted streams of data from the laptops of patrons could easily be seen in many instances by another patron sitting nearby with wireless "sniffer" software.

Even behind the closed doors of a national hotel chain, using a wired broadband Internet connection is risky business. Thayer documented how a hotel guest can use widely available snooping software with a laptop logged onto the hotel network. The guest can successfully snoop on the hard drives of fellow guests who have "file sharing" enabled on their PCs. Corporate data and passwords can easily be stolen.

Publicly available Internet kiosks and workstations, such as those found in Internet cafes, hotel and airport "business centers" and trade show floors were also shown to have multiple vulnerabilities. Widely available "keyboard logging" software could be secretly downloaded and installed on public terminals that have not been properly secured, allowing a cyber-criminal to collect and steal passwords and other private information. Even a properly secured workstation can leave a business traveler vulnerable to password theft -- by low tech "shoulder surfing."

What can enterprises do to protect their employees who must access the Internet while they travel? One solution is two-factor authentication tokens, such as the SafeWord(R) line of tokens from Secure Computing. SafeWord eliminates these problems with "keychain" tokens that generate one-time-only passcodes for each user session -- foiling password thieves even if a passcode is compromised, since the passcode can never be used again.

Pricing and Availability

Secure Computing SafeWord for RemoteAccess is available immediately through Secure Computing distributors and value added resellers worldwide. Simplified pricing combines tokens, software licenses, and support, starting at $99 per user. Other solutions that also feature active directory integration include SafeWord for Citrix(R) MetaFrame(R), SafeWord(R) for Nortel Networks, and SafeWord for Check Point. For more information, see www.securecomputing.com.

Feb 25 - IBM, Dutch Scientists to Explore First Moments of Universe. IBM and ASTRON, a leading astronomy organization in the Netherlands, today announced they will use IBM's Blue Gene/L supercomputer technology as the basis to develop a new type of radio telescope capable of looking back billions of years in time.
This joint research project in high data volume supercomputing will help provide astronomers around the world unique insight not otherwise available. Scientists will examine the beginnings of the earliest stars and galaxies after the formation of the universe, known as the Big Bang.

The Blue Gene/L system is expected to be completed by the middle of 2005. Blue Gene/L will give ASTRON the flexibility and unparalleled speed it needs to gather and analyze information from its Low Frequency Array (LOFAR) "software telescope" network. A consortium of universities, research institutes and companies plans to carry out research programs with the telescope when it begins operation a year later.

"Discovery in astronomy goes hand in hand with innovation in technology," said Prof. Harvey Butcher, director at ASTRON. "Together with IBM researchers we hope to learn how to design a new generation of radio telescopes capable of revealing the secrets of the early universe. But there are wider possibilities as well. We are convinced this collaboration with IBM will show the way to a wide variety of applications relating to geophysics and precision agriculture."

The Dutch government's Ministry of Education, Culture and Science is supporting the development of the technologies required for LOFAR, including what will be one of the world's most powerful supercomputers, capable of a peak performance of more than 34 trillion calculations per second, or 34 teraflops. Currently under development in IBM Research, this will be the latest in IBM's Blue Gene family of supercomputers that are poised to tackle other major scientific, business and societal challenges.

"The challenge of processing unprecedented data volumes requires us to raise our technology to a new level," said William Pulleyblank, director of exploratory server systems, IBM Research. "Blue Gene/L provides the flexibility and power to enable us to meet this grand challenge."

Unlike current observatories that use big optical mirrors or radio dishes to point to distant galaxies, ASTRON will harness more than 10,000 simple radio antennas spread across the northern Netherlands and into the German state of Lower Saxony and interpret them using high-speed calculations.

A team of IBM researchers and designers will collaborate with ASTRON scientists to develop a system capable of processing the huge amounts of data in real time. The Blue Gene/L supercomputer is a low-power consuming, compact machine able to receive 768 Giga-bits of new data every second. Over 12,000 PowerPC microprocessors provide the "brains." This new method combines incredible computing power and real-time data streaming to filter out man-made radio noise and distortions from the upper atmosphere, allowing scientists to see farther and more clearly than ever before.

About LOFAR

LOFAR will detect radio waves that show us the universe as it was 13 billion years ago. Detailed maps should show the universe condensing into the first individual stars and the first pieces of galaxies.

Traditional radio telescopes combine electronic signals from giant steerable dish antennas, which are very expensive to build and usually too small to focus the long wavelengths that are necessary to see galaxy formation.

LOFAR is completely different. It will detect the incoming radio pictures using an array of inexpensive omni-directional antennas, each shaped like a hollow pyramid. The antennas will convert the radio waves into tiny electronic currents, and these currents will be converted into digital form -- simple numbers -- that get transported along optical fiber cables to IBM's centralized Blue Gene/L supercomputer where software adds and multiplies these numbers to emulate a conventional radio telescope.

In essence, LOFAR is a large number of FM radios combined by the Blue Gene/L supercomputer into a single telescope.

"Our goal is to see objects so far away that their radio signals were emitted just after the Big Bang, to detect the very first objects in deep space, and to better understand magnetic storms on the Sun and the solar wind, and how they affect the climate on Earth," said Butcher.

About Blue Gene

Blue Gene is an IBM supercomputing project to explore a new family of supercomputer optimized for bandwidth, scalability and the ability to handle large amounts of data while consuming a fraction of the power and floor space required by today's fastest systems. Although currently a project in IBM's Research Division, Blue Gene/L is expected to be used worldwide by government and university researchers as well as businesses to tackle the most advanced challenges in several very different fields, including genomic research, automotive design, finance, weather forecasting and fluid dynamics.

Blue Gene/L is also part of the US National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)'s Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) Program. IBM has partnered with the NNSA since 2001 in research and development of the Blue Gene/L architecture. The NNSA will be installing a very large Blue Gene/L system in 2005 at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to advance understanding of materials behavior, in particular at very high densities and temperatures.

About IBM Research Division

IBM Research is the world's largest information technology research organization, with more than 3,000 scientists and engineers at eight labs in six countries. IBM has produced more research breakthroughs than any other company in the IT industry. For more information on IBM Research, visit www.research.ibm.com.

About ASTRON

The Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy (ASTRON) has been a leader in the field of technical development for astronomy since the late 1940s, but is currently provides front-line observing instrumentation for astronomers and astrophysicists across a wide range of frequencies and techniques. Its technology development program encompasses both innovative instrumentation for use on existing telescopes around the world and new technologies for future generations of telescopes. ASTRON's program is carried out under the auspices of the Dutch national research council, NOW. ASTRON's Web site is at: www.ASTRON.nl/, and LOFAR's site is at: www.LOFAR.org/.

Feb 25 - U.S. Small and Medium Businesses Rank Dell the Price and Quality Leader. A new Yankee Group survey of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) reveals that Dell not only has the most widely recognized brand but is also seen as the price and quality leader.

Of SMB respondents, 80% viewed Dell as either the perceived price leader or at least competitively priced, with HP (Compaq) placing second for price. Regarding quality, 82% of respondents viewed Dell as the quality leader or of good quality, with IBM placing second for quality.

"It is clear that Dell's strategy has served them well in generating brand awareness and creating a positive perception in the SMB market," said Michael Lauricella, program manager for the Yankee Group's Small & Medium Business Strategies advisory service. "However, as SMBs require more complete solutions the channel will play an increasingly critical role. This could hinder Dell's ability to effectively service this very competitive market in the long run."

Companies included in the survey were Acer, Apple, Dell, Gateway, HP (Compaq) IBM, Sony, and Toshiba. Questions were asked on a four-point scale and respondents were permitted to report no opinion in the event they lacked awareness of any of the respective companies.

The Yankee Group can be found online at www.yankeegroup.com.

Feb 25 - Three Affordable New Canon Mini DV Megapixel Camcorders. Canon's new Mini DV megapixel camcorders - the Elura 70, Elura 65 and the Elura 60 - prove once again that high quality digital camcorders can be easy to handle, easy to afford and easy to use. In stores beginning this April at an estimated street price ranging from $599 - $799, these streamlined lightweight, 1.33 megapixel video cameras are easy enough for any beginner to use anytime, anywhere and for any occasion and simple enough to turn memorable moments into family heirloom video and prints.

"The new Canon Elura camcorders raise the bar of quality for consumer digital camcorders while maintaining their absolute simplicity, versatility, affordability and of course, always the quality," stated Yukiaki Hashimoto, senior vice president and general manager of the consumer-imaging group at Canon U.S.A. "We remain one of the world's only camcorder company that designs, creates and manufactures our own lenses and we make them specifically to match, maximize and seamlessly merge the optics with the technology and capabilities of our camcorders whether they are being used in professional television and video production or to capture family functions."

DV PHOTO PLUS

Canon's DV Photo Plus combines Canon's core imaging essentials, creating video, still pictures and prints of superior clarity, color and brilliance. DV Photo Plus is the integration of Canon's world-renowned optics and the company's exclusive DIGIC DV image processor, a 1.33 megapixel CCD image sensor and the Print-And-Share feature that speeds image transfer from Canon camcorders to computer or printer.

In addition to the 1.33 Megapixel CCD image sensor, all three camcorders offer innovative advanced photo features that permit their use as a still camera.

In addition to the ease of Canon's new Print/Share button, The Elura 70, Elura 65 and Elura 60 camcorders feature a variety of Direct Print choices including a direct single cable connection to Canon CP series Card Photo Printers or Canon Bubble Jet Direct Printers without even connecting to a computer. Cropping and other print options can be selected and executed from the camcorder menu. The three Elura models are also PictBridge compatible, the new industry standard that permits cameras to direct print to any PictBridge compatible printer regardless of manufacturer and are certified compatible with select Windows and Apple operating systems.

The Elura 70 Mini DV Megapixel Camcorder carries an estimated street price of $799. The Elura 65 Mini DV Megapixel Camcorder and the Elura 60 Mini DV Megapixel Camcorder carry estimated street prices of $699 and $599, respectively.

For more information, visit www.usa.canon.com.

Feb 25 - Sendmail Drives Adoption of Sender Authentication. Sendmail, Inc., the global provider of electronic message management solutions, has announced that it will develop and distribute sender authentication technologies to its customers and the open source community to combat spam, viruses and identity fraud in email.

Over 60% of the world's email traffic runs on Sendmail's commercial and open source Mail Transfer Agent (MTA). By incorporating a selection of sender authentication technologies into these applications, Sendmail aims to significantly hasten the global adoption of mainstream authentication initiatives such as DomainKeys, recently introduced by Yahoo!, as well as proposals put forward by Microsoft and others.

Sender authentication technology allows organizations to verify the source of a message before accepting it by automatically checking if an email came from where it claims it did. The immediate benefit of sender authentication is to allow legitimate senders to `prove' their identity and to provide receivers the information they need to control their inbox.

Sendmail is extensively testing mainstream sender authentication schemes in an effort to determine which approaches are the most effective in preventing unnecessary message traffic from entering users' networks. Based on its conclusions, the company will develop and openly distribute authentication tools as plug-ins to the open source sendmail MTA that is distributed freely on the Internet. The company will also integrate the sender authentication technologies into its commercial message management products.

"By open sourcing implementations of the leading sender authentication schemes, Sendmail believes we can help drive deployment in record time," said Eric Allman, CTO of Sendmail. "The mail system needs this capability and it needs it now."

"Our products are being structured to ensure Sendmail's customers can deploy a combination of sender authentication schemes. Being able to use multiple schemes for authentication is like accepting either a driver's license or passport for identification," said Dave Anderson, Sendmail's CEO. "Assuming that there will be only one form of authentication world-wide is about as likely as having a world-wide ID card that every country accepts in place of passports. It is unlikely to happen."

In addition to helping block spam, proving the identity of a message sender will help prevent identity theft, which occurs when fraudulent senders impersonate a known brand by using the brand's domain name.

"We believe sender authentication will radically alter the way organizations manage email security," continued Anderson. "Today, the standard approach is to let everything in and then hope your filter can get rid of the unwanted messages. In the future, users will have a choice about what email is automatically accepted. The known good mail can be let in automatically and then message content scanning and other entry mechanisms can be used to let in the unknown but good mail. These filters will become just another component in the anti-spam process."

About Sendmail, Inc.

Sendmail, Inc. builds secure email systems for large enterprises and service providers who depend on email in their businesses. With proven technology and expertise, Sendmail works with customers to address their most complex messaging challenges. The result is a dependable email infrastructure that is easy to manage and built to grow. Sendmail customers include Sherwin-Williams, the United States Executive Office of the President, Cablevision and Avaya. Sendmail was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in Emeryville, Calif., with offices and distributors in Europe, Asia Pacific and North America. For more information about Sendmail, Inc., go to www.sendmail.com.

Feb 25 - Authenex Introduces HDLock to Prevent Unathorized Access to Hard Drives. Authenex, a leading provider of affordable and strong authenticated e-security applications, today announced the release of Authenex HDLock(TM). HDLock, featuring the Authenex A-Key(TM) USB token, affordably secures PCs and notebooks from unauthorized access.

HDLock employs a unique method of strong (two-factor) authentication that does not require PKI, and 128-bit AES hard drive encryption. Encryption of the hard drive contents is particularly important given the recent rise in notebook thefts, and the incalculable damage and expense that can result from the loss of data on a single notebook or desktop computer.
The theft of a laptop results in an average financial loss of $89,000; only a small percentage of the sum actually relates to the hardware cost. Source: 2002 Computer Security Institute/FBI Computer Crime & Security Survey.

"Hardware is replaceable, but data loss causes real problems -- especially if that data includes social security numbers, business financials, credit card numbers or client account information, not to mention passwords and digital credentials," said Henry Hon, executive vice president of Authenex. "While most companies concentrate their security spending at the corporate network level," continued Hon, "they are neglecting to secure the end points, the notebooks and the desktops, where even more sensitive confidential information can reside."

Much like using a bankcard and PIN number at an ATM, Authenex HDLock uses a two-factor authentication login process that confirms that the person requesting access to the computer is in fact who they claim to be. This is accomplished by requiring the use of a physical A-Key token in combination with a password. The Authenex two-factor authentication system is exponentially more secure than password-only (single-factor) authenticated systems, and does not require the added expense and administration of a digital certificate. Unlike other hard disk protection solutions that offer "additional" two-factor security, the A-Key hardware token is an integral part of HDLock rather than an add-on, third-party token.

Once logged on to the computer, HDLock users work without interruption. All encryption and decryption processes occur on the fly -- and are transparent to the end user. Upon shut down or hibernation, the encrypted contents of the hard drive become inaccessible to anyone but the owner of the unique A-Key and password with which the drive was encrypted -- even if the hard drive is removed from the computer. The only way to unlock and view the hard drive data is for the HDLock user to once again login using their A-Key and password.

HDLock is engineered to meet the stringent security requirements of government and industry, but is still priced well within reach of any PC user. With losses in the hundreds of millions each year from lost or stolen notebooks, HDLock offers an affordable and practical security solution.
The Authenex HDLock is available today through Authenex and is priced at $79.95 per user -- sold in quantities of 10. This includes software and A-Key tokens. Additional discounts may be available with quantity purchases.

For more information, visit www.authenex.com.

Feb 24 - Intel's Global Advertising Focuses on Mobile PC Consumers. Intel Corporation is focusing its latest advertising for Intel(R) Centrino(TM) mobile technology and the benefits of an unwired computing lifestyle on the quickly growing mobile PC consumer market segment. The global campaign consists of television, print, online and outdoor elements.

Under the campaign theme of "Unwire," the advertising kicks off with a series of 15-second TV spots that put the brand logo in motion to illustrate the compelling benefits of Centrino mobile technology. In one ad, the blue and magenta logo cuts through a clutter of wires to free itself.
In another ad, the logo is gliding freely above the clouds as the voiceover says "Want to glide with a thin and light laptop? Unwire with a wireless laptop powered by Intel Centrino mobile technology." Additional TV ads will capture "unwired moments," including the story of a vacationing couple using a Centrino mobile technology-based laptop PC to send videos from a hotspot in Taormina, Sicily.

"Our goal is to stay focused on the unwired lifestyle that this new brand enables," said Pam Pollace, Intel vice president and director of the Corporate Marketing Group. "These 15-second spots capture a key benefit of being unwired, and also complement our overall 'Unwire' campaign for Centrino mobile technology."

According to industry analyst firm IDC, mobile PC sales are growing dramatically, with sales to consumers representing the fastest-growing sub-segment. Worldwide growth for the consumer portable PC segment is projected to grow nearly 30 percent in 2004.(1)

Today, more than 130 laptop PC designs are based on Centrino mobile technology and nearly 30,000 hotspots around the world have been verified on the award-winning technology.(2)

Intel Centrino mobile technology includes the Pentium(R) M processor, related chipsets and 802.11 wireless networking capabilities. The technology also includes features designed to enable thinner and lighter designs, extended battery life and outstanding mobile performance.

Intel plans to introduce its next-generation Pentium M processor for Intel Centrino mobile technology, codenamed Dothan, in the second quarter, helping to usher in an even broader selection of thinner and lighter laptop PC designs with enhanced performance capabilities.

The global advertising begins with TV on Feb. 23 in the United States, followed by introductions in 11 other countries. Print, online and outdoor advertising will follow shortly thereafter. The ads will prominently highlight the blue and magenta brand logo along with a lifestyle-oriented tagline that matches each outlet's editorial. For instance, an ad appearing in an entertainment magazine will feature the logo on a reel of movie film with the tagline "Now starring in laptops everywhere." In another example, an ad appearing in a sports magazine will show the logo in the center of a tennis racquet with the tagline "High performance laptop. No strings attached."

For more information on "Unwire" or to view the advertising as it breaks, visit www.intel.com/unwire. Also, see www.intel.com/products for more information.

Feb 24 - Micron Samples Industry's First 4GB DDR2 Registered DIMMS. Micron Technology, Inc. (NYSE:MU), delivered the industry's first four gigabyte (4GB) DDR2 registered dual in-line memory module (RDIMM) to Intel Corporation. The industry-standard, 240-pin PC2-4300 DDR2 RDIMM is populated with thirty-six one gigabit (1Gb) DDR2 components using a stacked FBGA technology.

"Micron's demonstration of a 4GB RDIMM and the underlying 1Gb DDR2 technology is another important step in enabling Intel(R) server platform customers with the latest high-density solutions," said Pete MacWilliams, Intel Senior Fellow, Intel Corporation.

"We are leveraging Micron's leading position with 1Gb DDR2 to become the first supplier to demonstrate these high-density DDR2 RDIMMs," said Terry Lee, Executive Director of Advanced Technology and Strategic Marketing for Micron's Computing and Consumer Group. "4GB DDR2 RDIMMs are the highest-density modules available today, enabling server and workstation customers to ship systems containing 16GB of DDR2 memory while only populating four module slots."

Micron Technology, Inc., is one of the world's leading providers of advanced semiconductor solutions. Through its worldwide operations, Micron manufactures and markets DRAMs, Flash memory, CMOS image sensors, other semiconductor components and memory modules for use in leading-edge computing, consumer, networking, and mobile products. Micron's common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the MU symbol.

To learn more about Micron Technology, Inc., visit its Web site at www.micron.com.

Feb 24 - Dell Introduces New PowerEdge Servers. New single-processor Dell PowerEdge 700 and 750 servers deliver to small- and medium-sized businesses (SMB) and remote offices enterprise-class performance and capacity for as low as $699.

The servers' new features help to dramatically improve overall system performance. The PowerEdge 700, a tower server, can hold up to 1TB of data internally to accommodate a growing business' storage needs. The PowerEdge 750, a 1U rackmount system, performs over 35 percent faster than the last-generation Dell server.

Combined with new PowerConnect(tm) 2216, 2224, 2324 Fast Ethernet switches, growing organizations can help increase the speed and efficiency of their networks with the ability to easily upgrade the network to faster Gigabit networks down the road.

The rich feature set and affordability of these new servers indicate Dell's steadfast focus on delivering advanced capabilities on even entry-level systems, said Neil Hand, director of worldwide enterprise marketing in Dell's Product Group. "Dell is working to provide small businesses with the same class of technologies as the enterprise."

A full suite of support services complement Dell's trademark easy-to-use features and server systems management tools to help small companies build and maintain business solutions that differentiate them in the marketplace.

"SMB customers are deploying and using more advanced technologies to drive and grow sophisticated businesses on the Internet and the storefront, and running applications that drive the business," said Jamie Gruener, senior analyst, The Yankee Group. "Dell's commitment to lowering overall costs while providing the latest standards-based platforms makes it a strong partner for this customer segment."

Designed for SMB and Corporate Workgroup Requirements

The new systems are ideal for small workgroups and remote offices with limited IT resources or space. The PowerEdge 700 and PowerEdge 750 servers feature Intel's latest Pentium(R) 4 processors with 1MB cache for the performance demands of e-mail, Web, file and print serving applications. The PowerConnect 2216, 2224 and 2324 switches' plug-and-play simplicity requires little installation time, enabling SMBs or educational institutions to easily connect their servers, PCs and printers in a network.

The servers come with Dell OpenManage standards-based systems management tools, and customers with remote offices can upgrade their servers with remote management cards to maximize limited IT resources. The new servers and switches are all backed by Dell's comprehensive service and support plans, including four-hour onsite service and network infrastructure assessment options for the servers, and standard next-business-day parts replacement and lifetime technical support for the switches.

Information on Dell and its products can be obtained at www.dell.com.

Feb 24 - CyberGuard Unveils the Future of Enterprise Security. CyberGuard Corporation (NASDAQ: CGFW), the technology leader in network security, today announced a suite of new technologies that will transform the ways in which organizations secure their networks.

Total Stream Protection (TSP) redefines the traditional role of the firewall by incorporating a comprehensive set of features for securing business applications and organizational data. The announcement came at the 2004 annual RSA conference in San Francisco as hundreds of attendees gathered to examine security trends, issues and emerging technologies.

"The simple firewall is no longer sufficient to protect a network and the information it contains," explained Pat Clawson, chairman and CEO of CyberGuard. "TSP's multi-packet inspection technology goes beyond the traditional OSI (open system interconnection) application layer (Layer 7) to understand business rules and content while dynamically adapting to network conditions. The design is intelligent, allowing benign traffic to pass through at the same time preventing malignant traffic, so businesses can get the full benefit of their network-based applications."

Where most firewall/VPN products inspect single packets, CyberGuard's Total Stream Protection features five components that collectively scan the entire bi-directional stream of data to understand both the content and context of the communications.

TSP DefenderTM employs a set of advanced technologies that prevents an unauthorized user or system from connecting to a network or consuming network resources.

- TSP ProtectorTM terminates encrypted communications so the contents can be inspected and secured.
- TSP DispatcherTM utilizes dynamic load balancing, clustering and adaptive response technologies to maximize network throughput and reliability.
- TSP InspectorTM detects and prevents illicit protocol-specific commands and other Layer 7 data from traversing a network.
- TSP EnforcerTM looks above Layer 7 to secure Web-enabled business applications. It provides the "Layer 8 intelligence" needed to apply stringent security policies based on the business application being used and the context of the user's request.

"Over the next few years, businesses of all sizes will take advantage of Web-based business processes and applications to drive new revenue and lower costs," stated Jon Oltsik, senior analyst, information security, with the Enterprise Strategy Group.

"Web-based benefits don't come for free; they need to be supported with integrated security. This means that executive management must fund security as a business cost while weaving security into the corporate culture. CyberGuard's Total Stream Protection provides a solid foundation for enabling these next generation business processes to succeed."

A complete explanation of Total Stream Protection is available on CyberGuard's Web site at www.cyberguard.com.

Feb 24 - ``Unreal Tournament 2004'' Demo Becomes One of the Most Popular Game Downloads of All Time. Gamers worldwide have made the trial version of "Unreal(R) Tournament 2004" one of the most popular game demo downloads of all time, with more than 1.5 million downloads in the first week of availability. The demo first hit the Internet on Wednesday, February 11, and was distributed on a worldwide scale.

Fans can download the demo directly from www.unrealtournament.com or choose from a list of mirror servers found on the Web site. The full version of "Unreal Tournament 2004" is expected to be available at retail in March; pre-orders are now available at all major game sales outlets.

According to statistics tracked by Web sites offering the demo, more than 1.5 million users accessed the "Unreal Tournament 2004" demo in the last week alone. Graphics card maker, NVIDIA(R), which hosts the demo on its own "nZone" gaming portal, reports that more than 140,000 gamers have downloaded the demo from their server. FilePlanet.com, one of the most popular online video game download destinations, reported more than 110,000 downloads, making the "Unreal Tournament 2004" download one of the fastest demo downloads to reach 100,000 in the site's history. On most gaming sites offering the download, the "Unreal Tournament 2004" demo is maintaining its position as the top download.

"Fan reaction has been over-the-top, demonstrating that the 'Unreal Tournament' franchise is still the King of the Hill for online multiplayer games," said Peter Wyse, executive producer at Atari. "Epic's excellent work at reinventing its own masterpiece continues to impress gamers worldwide. The introduction of Onslaught mode, the reemergence of Assault mode and the all-new vehicles in 'Unreal Tournament 2004' have created exactly what action fans have been waiting for -- the definitive multiplayer experience on PC!"

"Unreal Tournament 2004" is developed by Epic Games in conjunction with Digital Extremes. The "Unreal Tournament 2004" official demo includes five playable game modes, and offers fans their first taste of "Unreal Tournament 2004's" two new gameplay styles: the introduction of the hyper-charged Onslaught mode and the return of the fan-favorite Assault mode, which last appeared in the original "Unreal Tournament." The demo also features established game types like Deathmatch, Capture the Flag and Bombing Run.

"We are really proud and excited to see the fans of the 'Unreal' franchise embracing the all new gameplay elements in 'Unreal Tournament 2004' in such overwhelming numbers," said Tim Sweeney, founder of Epic Games. "As a company, we focused hard on making a game that was more than just an incremental improvement and could meet our standards for breaking new ground in terms of gameplay innovation and multiplayer competition. Clearly, as PC gamers everywhere have demonstrated, 'Unreal Tournament 2004' stands to redefine what it means to compete online."

Some of the new features showcased in the "Unreal Tournament 2004" demo include:

-- Onslaught Mode: Onslaught is an epic-in-scope team-based challenge that pits two teams in bitter warfare across massive terrain maps in a frag-filled battle to destroy, capture and hold key power nodes. Vehicles play a major role as war-hardened flying and driving machines transport combatants to the "front" and serve as mobile platforms to launch devastating attacks on the enemy.

-- Assault Mode: In the completely redesigned Assault mode, gamers are challenged to complete a variety of mission objectives to attack or defend bases in a bigger and badder version of the "Unreal Tournament" classic; many Assault maps require the use of vehicles as a critical gameplay element.

-- Vehicles: "Unreal Tournament 2004" features a variety of land-, space- and air-based vehicles, including buggies, tanks, hovercraft, aircraft and more.

-- Voice Technology: Integrated voice communications, including voice-over-IP technology to allow real-time chat during gameplay; voice recognition, allowing players to issue orders to computer controlled bots; and, text-to-voice conversion of typed chat.

"Unreal Tournament 2004" is expected to release in March, in both a standard and a "Special Edition" format. The game will feature more than 100 environments and 80 characters as well as all the action and excitement that made the original "Unreal Tournament" a smash hit.

For more information, to download the demo or to find download mirror sites, please visit the official Web site at www.unrealtournament.com.

Feb 23 - America Online Announces New Lawsuit against 'Sunshine State Spammers'. America Online, Inc., in an ongoing effort to hold spammers accountable for their illegal and harmful actions, today announced an important legal action targeting several Florida junk emailers who conspired with international spam operators based in Thailand.

AOL has filed a civil lawsuit against four named defendants in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Orlando Division. The Company is alleging violations of the Virginia Computer Crimes Act, the Federal Computer Fraud & Abuse Act, and State of Florida Common Law. Civil penalties being sought include injunctive relief; $1.6 million in statutory damages; possible additional compensatory and punitive damages; and asset forfeiture.

AOL has been involved in an investigation into the practices of the named Defendants for over a year, beginning in January 2003. The essence of the claims are accusations of a conspiracy among the defendants themselves, as well as third parties located overseas, to send tens of millions of junk emails with hypertext links advertising low-mortgage rate offers to AOL members. The more than 35 million spam emails cited by AOL's lawsuit generated approximately 1.5 million complaints from members, and violated AOL's "Unsolicited Bulk Email (UBE)" policy.

The lawsuits' named Defendants include: "Connor-Miller Software, Inc.", Charles Henry Miller Jr., Heidi Miller; and James Connor. Connor-Miller Software, Inc. is a corporation incorporated under the laws of the State of Florida and is located in Winter Garden, Florida. The Millers are a married couple residing in Winter Garden, Florida, and Mr. Miller is an officer and director of Connor-Miller Software. James Connor is an officer and director of Connor-Miller Software, and resides in Longwood, Florida.

"This lawsuit demonstrates AOL's strong and ongoing commitment to the fight against spam," said Randall Boe, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of AOL. "We will pursue spammers, their accomplices, their co-conspirators, and anyone who operates on their behalf - no matter where they live. The bottom line is, if you are spamming AOL members - or helping someone who is - we will find you, and we will stop you."

The Company's lawsuit alleges the Defendants conspired to set up and maintain a bank of email servers in an office suite in Ocoee, Florida for the spam ring's use and specially configured the equipment to facilitate spamming. The lawsuit further alleges that Connor wrote code for the bulk email software program the spammers were using in an attempt to evade AOL's mail filters and avoid detection.

The Defendants' co-conspirators living in Thailand include Jonathan Beyer and Joseph Conrad. AOL alleges that Beyer, a U.S. citizen residing in Thailand, headed the conspiracy and, in addition to spamming, also operates a number of adult websites. AOL alleges that Conrad, also a U.S. citizen residing in Thailand, assisted in establishing and operating Beyer's Internet operations.

AOL has already taken legal action against Beyer and Conrad in America Online, Inc. v. Jonathan Beyer, et al. (03-474-A), filed in April 2003 and now pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. The defendants named in the new Florida lawsuit had been previously named as co-defendants in the original AOL v. Beyer complaint, but the Court dismissed the Connor-Miller defendants in a December 2003 ruling, on grounds they did not have sufficient ties to Virginia to be sued there.

According to the global 'Register of Known Spam Operations' ("ROKSO"), maintained by The Spamhaus Project (www.spamhaus.org), three of the Top 10 known worldwide spammers reside in Florida - more than any other U.S. state.

AOL has a long and distinguished legal track record of taking action against spammers and their accomplices, filing over 25 complaints against over 100 individuals and corporations alleged to have spammed AOL members since 1997.

In December, AOL collaborated with the Virginia Attorney General, state law enforcement, and industry colleagues to announce the first-ever criminal indictments of two spammers from North Carolina using the new, toughest-in-the-nation Virginia anti-spam statute.

AOL has also been at the forefront of an ongoing effort to encourage states to draft and adopt new, tough anti-spam laws based on Virginia's statute; the most recent state to introduce such legislation was Ohio in January.

Feb 23 - ATI works with Intel and Pinnacle Systems to use PCI Express Technology. ATI Technologies Inc., (TSX: ATY) (NASDAQ: ATYT) together with Intel Corporation and Pinnacle Systems, demonstrated High Definition (HD) video editing on the PC at the Intel Developer's Forum in San Francisco.

Enabled by the accelerated high bandwidth, symmetrical data transfer capability made possible by PCI Express, the demonstration used the ATI PCI Express visual processing unit (VPU) with the PCI Express interconnect incorporated directly into the graphics chip. As this joint collaboration demonstrated, PCI Express breaks down current bandwidth barriers and will dramatically change the video, gaming and graphics experience.

ATI's PCI Express VPU, in conjunction with the advanced real time HD engine being developed by Pinnacle, takes advantage of the enhanced data transfer capabilities offered by PCI Express. Before PCI Express, only professional users with access to very expensive machines could modify high-quality video content in real time. The IDF demonstration shows how useful PCI Express is for bringing HD video editing to the consumer- and prosumer-level. Pinnacle pioneered this capability with products like Liquid Edition, which leverages the CPU and graphics processor to deliver advanced professional video editing and effects. If HD video content was manipulated with AGP, the video data transfer rate and quality would be significantly less than that demonstrated today on PCI Express.

"Pinnacle is known for pioneering the use of desktop technology to deliver solutions for the most demanding professional video applications," said Jim Guerard, Vice-President and General Manager, Advanced Editing Business Unit, Pinnacle Systems. "The advent of the PCI Express standard will enable Pinnacle to use off-the-shelf technologies to extend the real time HD and SD editing and effects of professional systems to increasingly sophisticated consumer and prosumer editors. Pinnacle is very pleased to join industry leaders ATI and Intel in demonstrating the value of PCI Express acceleration for advanced editing systems."

OEMs are expected to transition many of their systems to the PCI Express standard immediately, increasing the importance of delivering a stable, effective family of PCI Express graphics cards. ATI has sampled its PCI Express solution to OEMs and system development partners. As motherboard and chipset vendors make their PCI Express solutions available, ATI will deliver a full family of PCI Express products.

"ATI demonstrated the industry's first visual processor with support for the new PCI Express bus at last year's Fall IDF, choosing a native solution over a bridge solution to enable the next wave of applications, which will need true PCI Express graphics to realize their full potential," said Rick Bergman, Senior Vice President of Marketing and General Manager, Desktop, ATI Technologies Inc. "We have already sampled our PCI Express solutions to the leading OEM and system integrators around the world and are eagerly anticipating the rapid deployment of PCI Express."

"ATI is one of the key players in the PCI Express technology revolution," said Kevin Corbett, vice president and chief technology officer, desktop platforms group, Intel Corporation. "Intel is pleased to be working with companies such as ATI and Pinnacle Systems to help deliver revolutionary real-world benefits in PC technology, such as high-definition video editing with PCI Express."

ATI has been active in the development of PCI Express standards since its inception, first sitting on the original steering committee and continuing to influence and support the PCI Special Interest Group (PCI-SIG).

For more information on ATI and our currently available products, please visit www.ati.com.

Feb 23 - WiMedia Radio Selected Platform for Wireless Ultra-Wideband Personal Area Networks. The WiMedia Alliance announced today that the Wireless USB Promoter Group has agreed to use the WiMedia(TM) ultra-wideband radio platform as the foundation for its first wireless implementation of USB. The WiMedia Alliance is currently completing its specifications for a common radio abstraction layer for wireless personal area networks (WPANs) optimized for multimedia and other high-bandwidth applications.

The pervasiveness of USB technologies that enable computers, peripherals and personal entertainment device connectivity today will be a major factor for the growth of ultra-wideband and the success of Wireless USB.
"We see Wireless USB as a big accelerator for the WiMedia Alliance's efforts to bring the benefits of ultra-wideband to consumers," said Glyn Roberts, President of the WiMedia Alliance. "Many of the leaders of the Wireless USB Promoter Group, including Intel Corporation, are also participating in WiMedia development and there's recognized value in adopting a common underlying platform."

The WiMedia Radio Platform is a software layer that provides a foundation upon which higher layer networking solutions such as Wireless USB can be built. The Wireless USB Promoter Group's selection of the WiMedia Radio Platform for ultra-wideband WPANs advances WiMedia toward its goal of providing connectivity-level coexistence.
"The WiMedia Radio Platform meets our objective of using industry standards to ensure coexistence with other ultra-wideband-based connectivity solutions," said Jeff Ravencraft, Intel Technology Strategist and USB-IF Chairman.
WiMedia's Radio Platform is designed to enable robust connectivity among PC, consumer electronic and mobile ultra-wideband devices. WiMedia expects to be the wireless radio of choice for other established and emerging high data-rate solutions as they move into the wireless world. It will enable multiple connectivity standards to share ultra-wideband spectrum and provides peaceful coexistence among different industry initiatives.

WiMedia Alliance Promoter Members include Alereon, Inc., Appairent Technologies, Inc., Eastman Kodak Company, Hewlett-Packard Company, Intel Corporation, Motorola, Inc., Philips, Samsung Electronics Company, Sharp Laboratories of America, STMicroelectronics, and Texas Instruments.

If you are interested in becoming a WiMedia member or learning more about the WiMedia Alliance and its mission, visit the WiMedia Alliance website at www.wimedia.org.

Feb 23 - US Customer Satisfaction Highest Since 1995, Fueling Consumer Demand. Customer satisfaction has reached the highest level since the second quarter of 1995, according to a report released today. The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) ticked up .3 percent to 74, continuing a strong two-year upward trend in how people evaluate the quality of goods and services on which they spend their money. The final-quarter report for 2003 shows satisfaction up a substantial 1.5 percent over the previous year.

Satisfaction with the buying experience has historically led to repeat business and increased spending, and the new data suggest that consumer spending will continue to rise. The ACSI is a national economic indicator produced by the University of Michigan, American Society for Quality, and the CFI Group.

Americans are finding the most to like with e-commerce, particularly e-retail, and in the kinds of experiences delivered by Costco and some other traditional retailers. Costco is the leader among retailers, with a score of 80 on the ACSI's 100-point scale. But e-retail as a category registered an 84 and Amazon.com leads all companies measured last quarter with an exceptionally high score of 88.

"A person who has a good purchase experience is more inclined to spend again," said Claes Fornell, director of the University of Michigan's National Quality Research Center, which compiles and analyzes the data. "Sustainable economic growth ultimately links to the availability of goods, services, and experiences for which people are willing to repeatedly open their wallets."

The fourth quarter ACSI report includes two economic sectors--retail and finance/insurance, plus e-commerce. E-commerce, which was already at a high level, also showed the greatest increase this year over last--up 4.1 percent to 80.8 from 77.6 in 2002. Finance/insurance climbed by 1.2 percent, from 73.8 to 74.7. Retail is up slightly to 75 from 74.6 last year. In the report, each sector is further broken down into industries. The report includes scores for those categories and for individual firms.

"Every one of these industries has major players that have been taking deliberate, specific steps to better match product, service, and process quality with the customer's definition of how things should be," said Jack West, past president of the American Society for Quality. "In a tough economy, many companies recognize that improving quality and delivering better experiences for customers is the way to stimulate spending."

The performance of e-commerce is impressive, especially given that the data also show customer expectations to be among the highest of any industry measured.

"E-commerce is getting better and better at first determining what constitutes an excellent experience in the minds of customers and then quickly delivering," said Larry Freed, an online satisfaction expert and CEO of ForeSee Results, which co-sponsors the e-commerce portion of the ACSI. "The barriers to making improvements are definitely lower on the Internet, and companies like Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and eBay are showing they know how to use that advantage effectively."

At the firm level, the most substantial improvements were made by Pizza Hut (up 7.1 percent, from 70 to 75), Bank of America (a 5.7 percent increase, from 70 to 74), and JC Penney (an improvement of 4.1 percent, from 74 to 77). One of the star performers from last year, Kohl's, dropped six percent but fell from a lofty 84 to a still-strong 79. Amazon.com did not improve but its 88 score is the highest of any company measured last quarter and one of the highest in the Index overall.

Within e-commerce, performance of the four categories measured improved with the exception of travel. eBay registered a two-point hike, increasing its score 2.4 percent from 82 to 84.

"Travel does well, but not as well as they could," said Freed. "There's little distinction among the players and little evidence of providing as satisfying an experience as some other categories of e-commerce. Some of that may be tied to the ultimate product, though. Airline tickets are ultimately out of their control."

"eBay is the auction category leader, far and away," he said. "They are one of the three strongest performers in e-commerce, and one of an elite group of top-performing companies in the ACSI overall, and their revenues are following."

Amazon.com's "remarkable" score of 88 may belie a future challenge, according to Fornell.

"Although Amazon.com customers consider service quality to be exceedingly high, an increasing part of their satisfaction is due to lower pricing," he said. "But that is not to take anything away from their impressive score. If they go any higher, they will get a nose bleed."

Among the retail stores measured, Kohl's remains the leader in its category, despite a six percent drop to 79. Kohl's is included in the department/discount stores category, as is JC Penney. Penney is headed in the opposite direction, however, jumping 6.8 percent to 78. Target and Dillard's essentially tied with Penney, both earning scores of 77. The troubled K-Mart brings up the rear with a 70.

"JC Penney has been forced into focused retrenchment, squeezed as it is between Target and Wal-Mart," said Fornell. "But as far as customers are concerned, things have improved. Complaints are down and service quality is up."

Costco, included in the specialty retail category, is well ahead of its competitors with its score of 80. Lowe's and Sam's Clubs are relatively strong, though, both pulling a 77. Best Buy (72), Home Depot, and Circuit City's (both 73) are essentially tied at the bottom of the category.

Fast food's improvement from 71 to 74 makes it the biggest gainer in the new report. YUM! Brands' Pizza Hut made the category's biggest jump, up 7.1 percent to 75. This comes on the heels of YUM!'s KFC restaurants 2002 improvement of 10 percent, and KFC was up another 2.3 percent in 2003. The category leaders continue to be Papa John's, holding steady at 76, along with Domino's and Pizza Hut, which both scored 75.

Also included in the retail category are supermarkets. Publix has consistently been the category leader, and remains so with its score of 82 (up 1.2 percent from 81). Its nearest competitor is SUPERVALU at 77. Kroger and Safeway are tied for last with their 71s.

In financial services, the highest scores went to the life insurance and property/casualty insurance categories, 77 and 78 respectively. Farmer's Group's 4.2 percent increase to 75 still leaves it well behind GEICO, at 79, among property/casualty insurers.
Healthcare insurance does not do well with customers, with a category score of 70. Blue Cross earned the category high of 72, and United Health Group registered a poor 64.
Bank of America showed a very healthy increase in the banking category, a 5.7 percent jump from 70 to 74. Wachovia, the category leader at 76 also improved strongly, up 4.1 percent over its 2002 score.

Company scores and other information about the ACSI can be found on the ACSI Web site: www.theacsi.org.

Feb 23 - Gartner Says The Number of Hot Spot Users Worldwide to Triple in 2004. The number of hot spot users worldwide will total 30 million in 2004, up from 9.3 million users in 2003, according to Gartner, Inc. (NYSE:IT)(NYSE:ITB) With such a large increase in hot spot users, Gartner analysts said, enterprises must take action in implementing a strategy that gives their employees secure access and control over the cost of access to hot spots.

By the end of 2004, more than 50 percent of professional notebooks will have wireless LAN (WLAN) capability. Employees will increasingly use WLAN in the office, at home and at hot spot locations. Gartner analysts warned that if organizations do not undertake a contract with a service provider to allow access to hot spots and to control costs, employees are likely to use hot spots and list the cost under other expenses.

"Build a strategy for use of hot spots by employees, but beware of entering into subscription contracts with service providers that cannot supply roaming agreements to meet the enterprise's needs," said Ian Keene, research vice president at Gartner. "Organizations should avoid long-term contracts because this service sector is changing. Be prepared to supplement subscription contracts with pay-as-you-go hot spot access. Companies should also put in place a mechanism to monitor hot spot usage so that the company will know what to contract for when the market matures further."

A hot spot strategy should include the use of a personal firewall and secure virtual private network login for all remote access. If managed properly, an organization can see some real benefits to implementing a WLAN strategy. By the end of 2004, Gartner analysts said traveling knowledge-based workers will be able gain 30 minutes a day in productivity from WLAN hot spots.

Managed service provides, such as iPASS, FiberLink and GRIC, will be key to enabling hot spot uptake among enterprise users. Alliances, mergers and acquisitions will dominate the second half of 2004.

The increased demand for mobile access will drive enterprises to reduce the number of wired networks they use while increasing the number of wireless networks in 2004.

For more information, visit www.gartner.com.

Feb 22 - Sunday Shopping Watch

Best Sunday Deals - See our Best Sunday Ad Deals Table below for specific system prices.

Weekly Comparison. Not a weekend of big sales. They are still some good desktop deals, but laptops have returned to regular prices.

This Sunday's Special Discounts and Financing. In addition to sales on specific items, the following store-wide sales are advertised this week. (Note that these ads are for the Dayton, Ohio area. Prices or offerings may be different where you live.)

Best Buy is offering 24 month no-interest financing on all Pentium 4s with Hyper Threading Technology desktop packages. They are also offering 12 month no-interest financing on all other desktop packages and laptops, and $150 mail-in rebate on advertised laptops and desktop packages.
Circuit City is offering 12 months no interest financing, and up to $150 mail-in rebates, on advertised desktop packages and notebooks.
Office Depot has rebates on advertised PCs.
CompUSA has no store-wide promotions this Sunday.
Staples has no store-wide promotions this Sunday.
Compare to Online Prices - Compare the Sunday ad prices to those being offered at DealTime, it searches over 160 online computer stores.

InfoHQ Related Shopping Pages

Shopping Alerts - Our latest shopping advisories on buying digital cameras and camcorders, desktop computers, laptops, and other computer items.

Windows XP Upgrade Guide - All about upgrading to Windows XP.

What You Need to Know About Dial-up Internet Service Rebates - The pros and cons of 'free' Internet service deals. Also see our latest InfoHQ Tech Watch Newsletter; Free PC and Free Internet Deals.     

Definitions. A complete desktop system/package/complete package is defined as a computer with monitor and printer or scanner.
A build-to-order system is customized at the retailer and then ordered from a computer manufacturer. In addition to the computer's stated price, you still pay sales tax and shipping charges (if you order direct from the vendor without going through the chain store, you may not have to pay sales tax and you could get a better warranty).

Caution about advertised prices. When reading advertisements, read the fine print of the ad to make sure you know what is being advertised and what it cost. For example, many advertisers will show a complete system with computer, monitor, and printer but advertise a price for the computer only.

* Prices discussed in this article. We report prices after rebates and discounts are subtracted.
Items highlighted in Black are good deals.
Items highlighted in Red means prices have gone up and the system is not a good buy this week.
Items in normal text means prices are about the same as the previous weeks.

Best Sunday Ad Deals
Category
Product Description
Price* (see above)
Prices up or Down this Week
Store
1. Best Celeron Deal
eMachines 2.7 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$439
-
Best Buy
2. Best Celeron Deal
Compaq 2.7 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$449
-
Circuit City
1. Best Pentium 4 System
HP 3.0 GHz Pentium 4 complete system with HT Technology, 15 inch flat panel, and DVD-RW
$1269
+$20
Best Buy
2. Best Pentium 4 System
Sony 3.2 GHz Pentium 4 Windows Media Center complete system with HT Technology, 15 inch flat panel, and DVD-RW
$1849
-
Best Buy
1. Best AMD Athlon XP System
Compaq Athlon 2800+ complete system with 17 inch monitor
$619
-
Best Buy
2. Best AMD Athlon XP System
HP Athlon 3000+ complete system with 17 inch monitor and DVD-RW drive
$719
-
Circuit City
3. Best AMD Athlon XP System
HP Athlon 3200+ complete system with 17 inch monitor and DVD-RW
$849
-
Circuit City
Best AMD Athlon 64 System
HP Athlon 3200+ complete system with 17 inch monitor and DVD-RW
$1089
-
Best Buy
1. Best Low-cost Laptop
Compaq 2.6 GHz Celeron with DVD/CD-RW
$899
+$150
Office Depot
2. Best Low-cost Laptop
eMachines widescreen Athlon 2500+ with DVD/CD-RW
$949
-
Best Buy
1. Best High-end Notebook
Compaq 2.66 GHz Pentium 4 with DVD/-RW
$1199
-
Circuit City, Office Depot
2. Best High-end Notebook
HP widescreen 2.8 GHz with DVD/CD-RW
$1449
-
Best Buy
3. Best High-end Notebook
Gateway widescreen Centrino 1.4 GHz with DVD/CD-RW
$1399
-
Office Depot
Peripherals and Software
Best Sunday Deal
Seagate 160 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$89
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
BFG Asylum GeForce FX 5700 Ultra 128 MB
$149
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Sony 8X DVD-RW
$169
(after rebates)
-$20
Best Buy, Circuit City

 

InfoHQ Quick Jumps to Upgrades from DealTime - Click to check on latest prices
Video Cards ATI Radeon
  GeForce4 FX
Hard Drives Maxtor
  Western Digital
  Seagate
CD-RW Drives 40x/48x Write Speed
DVD-RW Drives DVD+RW/CD-RW
CPUs All AMD Athlon XP CPUs
  All Intel Pentium 4 CPUs
Antivirus Software All Manufacturers
Firewall Software All Manufacturers
All Other Products DealTime

 

Additional Information. For additional technical information, advice on how to buy a laptop or desktop, and vendor and manufacturer links, please see our Computer Buying Advice page.

About Sunday Shopping Watch. Sunday Shopping Watch appears every Sunday (except some holidays like Easter and Christmas) in our News and Rumors column. It is a review of local (Dayton, Ohio) computer chain store advertisements. While we can not guarantee your local chain store has the same items, this article can help you make informed buying decisions.

 

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