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Most gamers know about Razer, but the news of them launching their new Comms platform might have missed their eyes and ears. Razer's Comms platform is an all-in-one communications solution, combining a VoiP client, instant messaging and IRC chat features.
All of this is wrapped into Comms, which can let players chat to their fellow gamers without having to alt-tab to another application to do so. Comms' in-game overlay seamlessly integrated with PC games, and can be used to display as a small window, or a smaller ticket that shows who is speaking at the time.
Razer have also promised an ultra-fast server infrastructure and complex audio algorithms that will reduce noise and echo cancellation in order to give gamers the most precise, crisp and clear communications with no time-outs or lag spikes.
BitTorrent Sync, a new piece of software that operates like Dropbox in that it syncs files on different systems, has been released to the general public in its unpolished Alpha form. BitTorrent Sync makes use of the BitTorrent protocol to sync files across different systems without the need for a centralized server.
The best part is that it does all of this for free. There's no need to pay for a centralized server to host your files or manage the syncing. There are some downsides to not having a central server, but for the most part, BitTorrent Sync fills a much needed gap. You can check it out at BitTorrent Labs.
Users on the Intel HD4000 GPU boat are about to get more performance. While at GDC, Intel announced a new version of their driver that will bring with it an up to 10 percent improvement in graphics performance. Also included in the new driver is support for OpenCL 1.2.
The new driver is said to have been built for Haswell processors, though the driver will also be compatible with Ivy Bridge. Different sources are reporting that it will be compatible with HD2500, though others are reporting that it won't be. The new driver will be released as early as this week.
Users can download the latest drivers from Intel's website.
Piriform have released CCleaner 4.0, which includes a bunch of new features and the usual improvements. Two new tools are available with version 4.0, the first 'Duplicate File Finder' and the second 'System and Browser Monitoring'.
CCleaner 4.0 includes improved graphics and icons, major performance increases and support for new applications. As for the two new features, here's a run down on what they can do for you:
Duplicate File Finder
You may not realize how many duplicate files are stored on your computer, taking up valuable hard drive space. CCleaner now includes a duplicate file finder tool, which can quickly find these files, and allow you to choose which ones to delete - freeing up more space on your PC than ever before!
System and Browser Monitoring
If you're a CCleaner Professional user, you can now set CCleaner to run every time you shut down your browser, or you can set it to monitor your entire system in the background and detect when to Clean based on disk space that can be saved!
FinalWire have released AIDA64 v2.85, which includes the usual slew of improvements and added support. This time around, we have support for AMD's Radeon HD 8000 Series of GPUs, AMD's A-Series "Richland" APU, and NVIDIA's latest and greatest GeForce and Tesla GPUs. The detailed new features and improvements:
- Optimized 64-bit benchmarks for AMD A-Series "Richland" APU
- Improved support for AMD "Kabini", "Temash" and "Kaveri" APUs
- Improved support for Intel "Haswell" and "Valleyview" processors
- Preliminary support for AMD "Beema" APU
- Preliminary support for Intel "Avoton" SoC, "Crystal Well" CPU, "Haswell-E" CPU, "Haswell-ULT" SoC, "Ivy Bridge-E" CPU, "Lynx Point-LP" PCH, "Wellsburg" PCH
- Preliminary support for DDR4 memory modules and GDDR5 system memory
- GPU details for AMD Radeon HD 8000 Series and nVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan
You can grab AIDA64 Extreme Edition and AIDA64 Business Edition from the AIDA64 online store.
NVIDIA release GeForce 314.22 WHQL drivers, BioShock: Infinite and Tomb Raider improvements included
NVIDIA have come to the rescue of GeForce GPU owners, with their WHQL-certified GeForce 314.22 drivers. When compared to the previous set of WHQL-certified drivers, GeForce 314.07, NVIDIA are claiming that when using a GeForce GTX 680 you'll see improvements of 41% and 71% for BioShock: Infinite and Tomb Raider, respectively.
NVIDIA aren't leaving other GeForce owners without performance improvements, stating that gains "will be seen on other GPUs", but they'll be at "varying degrees." Other games that will see performance improvements are Sniper Elite V2 and Sleeping Dogs with 22% and 12%, respectively. SLI-based configurations get some love too, with StarCraft II, Sniper Elite V2 and Sleeping Dogs all receiving performance improvements of 10%, 22% and 22%, respectively.
You can grab the new GeForce 314.22 WHQL drivers here.
AMD and NVIDIA are about to heat up the sub-$200 GPU market with their Radeon HD 7790 and GeForce GTX 650 Ti with GPU Boost, respectively, and to meet these new GPUs is a new version of TechPowerUp's GPU-Z, version 0.6.9.
GPU-Z now also supports the HD 8870M, GeForce GT 415 and GT 750M. For NVIDIA's Kepler GPUs, the DirectX feature-set value is now fixed. You can download GPU-Z 0.6.9 here.
If you're a Radeon user, you might want to check out AMD's latest goodies in the form of the Catalyst 13.3 Beta 3 drivers. The new drivers provide some performance improvements in both SimCity and Far Cry 3, as well as improve the latency performance issues in Tomb Raider and Hitman: Absolution.
Here's a full list of what you can expect:
- Improve performance in Sim City 5 up to 16 percent
- Improves performance in Far Cry 3 up to 5 percent
- Improves latency performance issues seen in Tomb Raider and Hitman Absolution
- Resolves slight corruption seen in Tomb Raider with TressFX enabled for CrossFire and single GPU configurations
Download the AMD Catalyst 13.3 Beta 3 drivers for Windows, right here.
It seemed that the whole tech community was up in arms over Microsoft's decision to tie all retail licenses of its Office 2013 to single install on a single PC, which could not be transferred, if you upgrade machines. Redmond has taken notice and reversed that decision.
Today Microsoft announced that it is changing policy and will now allow users to transfer their retail Office 2013 license to a new PC "if the old one fails." The new changes will be updated in the license agreement in future updates, but said that the change is effective immediately.
There are of course limitations, including only being able to transfer the license every 90 days and you can still only run the license on one piece of hardware at a time. We are glad Microsoft has recanted their decision to limit the use of its software, and we hope they will continue to think of the customer over the bottom line.
There's so many games coming out in these coming weeks, including the just-released Crysis 3. NVIDIA are now out of the gate with new beta drivers, the GeForce 314.14 beta drivers. The new beta drivers include improved performance and compatibility for multiple titles.
This includes Tomb Raider, which is out any minute, SimCity due a few minutes later, StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm (March 12) and Resident Evil 6 (March 22). If you want to hit up Hawken with hardware-accelerated PhysX effects when it drops later this week, you'll need these new beta drivers. NVIDIA have also said there are multiple performance increases for those of you running GeForce GTX 680 GPUs, and again when they're in SLI - more numbers here:
GeForce GTX 680:
3.1% in Just Cause 2 at 1920x1080/DX10/4xMSAA
9.1% in Sleeping Dogs at 2560x1600/Extreme/High AA
21.1% in Sniper Elite V2 at 1920x1080/Ultra/High AA