Nearly a month after moving into our new flat, Eircom have finally managed to not only provide us with a phone line, but also with broadband. This has given me the opportunity to do a bit of housekeeping on the various gadgets and gizmos which have been starved of an internet connection over the past couple of months.

First off was the iMac which got OS X 10.4.10 and a few other updates automatically installed. Lana’s iBook also received the Apple update treatment. The iMac, and therefore my iTunes library has been offline since before iTunes Plus songs were released so I also popped onto iTunes Music Store to download 158 non-DRM’d tracks from EMI to update my library. Finally, I updated Adobe Lightroom up to 1.1 and look forward to playing with the new features.

Next to receive the automatic update treatment was the XBox 360. There was an auto update for the dashboard to provide support for the forthcoming wireless guitar controllers for hotly anticipated Rock Band game. Forza 2 also updated when I fired that up and went online with it for the first time.

Next was the Linksys NSLU2 NAS device. This has been a little neglected over the past six months or so, sitting happily on the network serving up music to the XBox via uPnP using TwonkyVision MediaServer. It received a firmware update to the latest version of Unslung, and also a new version of TwonkyMedia, taking it up to the current 4.4 release. The net effect of this is that it can now stream video to the XBox as well, including high def content.

Finally, since I no longer use my Nokia N80 on Orange UK, and got it unlocked before moving over to Dublin I decided to update it’s firmware to turn it into an N80 Internet Edition. Orange don’t allow this firmware upgrade by default, so the Nokia Software Updater does not offer it. The solution is simply to use a bit of software to change the product number on the device (instructions here). This proved to be simple and easy. One immediate benefit is that I can now use the phone to make VOIP calls over my wireless network, including Skype calls using http://www.fring.com/. I’ve yet to make a Skype call, but am intrigued to find out how it performs when I phone my folks up this weekend.

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