Month: April 2004

New Advanced Fee fraud case

I received a uk lotto notification that I had won 2.5million dollars in an email this morning. Quite why a UK Lotto would pay out in dollars and send notifications to europe,america and Africa I don’t know. However they did make the mistake of including a UK contact address in London and a uk based phone number (mobile). I’ve therefore bothered to actually pass this information onto the police as they might just have been dumb enough to give correct contact information.

My wife the stripper.

What can I say?. 😉 (that’ll attract some google searches!) Turns out that she was over enthusiastic yesterday and managed to not only destroy the equipment but trip the electrics for the entire house. I didn’t notice as by that time I was asleep as I had been awake really early in the day to drive to Birmingham to visit a customer. Unfortunately the equipment was not ours and was borrowed and they didn’t have a receipt for it. I was not looking forward to the visit to the shop to see if we could get a replacement under the year guarantee and thankfully they did. Thanks Wickes! Now as long as it lasts for an hour tonight we’ll be happy and the bedroom will soon be back to normal 😉

Port reporter

One of our users, for the second time in two weeks reported that they had a virus on their pc and Norton had picked it up. The scary thing is that it had got on and infected the pc, despite Norton installed and running on the machine. I think the problem was/is due to the fact that the Symantec Firewall/VPN software is pants and can be configured by the user – therefore if they are not careful it can be left in a wide-open state…and thats what I think happened, although after the last infection I made sure it was in restricted mode (but it wasn’t this morning). If I’d known about the Port Reporter from MS I could have worked out (easily) what ports the virus was supposedly running on. I guess I could have used netstat but not first thing before coffee.

feedster spam flood

Unfortunately i’ve subscribed to some of the posts on the Feedster blog which has the option to email you every time someone comments on a post. A feature that would be REALLY useful when you want to track what someone responds to your comment with. Unfortunately the feedster blog doesn’t have any flood or script protection as some idiot who shall remain nameless keeps sending a dumb comment to the blog and therefore sending me a notification. So far i’ve probably had 40+ emails. Grrrrrr. Email has been sent to the owner to try and get something sorted quick.

Office 2003 is back

I got the pukka version of office2003 today and installed it on the laptop and the desktop so I’m now a happy bunny again and I can read my emails with a decent preview and not download any spam pictures. The interesting thing in the EULA (which I bothered to read) actually says that I can install the software on my main pc AND on another portable device as long as I am the sole user of that device. Which is great as it means I can install on the desktop and the laptop and only need one licence for it. This EULA could actually make it cheaper for some companies to upgrade to this version of office as they could potentially only need half the number of licences that previous versions needed – if of course the company is indulgent enough to give everyone a desktop and a laptop.
I downloaded the office updates and was suprised to see only one spam filter update – I guess that the second filter update that came out a while ago is actually a culmalative one.
Speaking of patches – I’ve started to install the new Microsoft patches that came out yesterday and so far have not had any problems.

Editing a pdf file.

Due to the company name change we needed to edit our pdf documents that have the old company name on. Now the reason the files are in pdf format is because its (nearly) impossible for a user to edit the manual… we have just found out. There seemed to be three pieces of software that could do the job, Adobe Acrobat (the full version) but for some reason this doesn’t work at all – although I suspect its because the user actually has Adobe Reader and not Acrobat but they won’t admit it. The other two solutions are Jaws PDF Editor but this only seems to give us the ability to copy/paste text from the pdf to another application such as Word – but then you can do this with acrobat reader anyway (unless its protected). The other application was PDF Editor from CadKas. This would do the job but its painfully slow. There is no global search and replace (which would make it easy to search for oldcompany and replace with newcompany and there seems to be a bug in firing up dialogs (which are quirky in themselves) in that if you click to load a graphic and select the folder, rather than opening the folder it will complain that the folder.jpg doesn’t exist – and then refuse to open the dialog box up again. This software could be used if you only needed to edit a few pieces of text or a few graphics – certainly not 20 or 30 manuals each 10+ pages long.
Eventually the user went back and found the original word documents (although they swore blind they couldn’t find them) and they are now editing the files in Word. website

Each time I spend a bit of time on the website (which is a LOT of time) I am amazed at how good the programming is and how useful the features are. I’m not sure how much of it is .net programming or how much of it is some fancy java programming, but the location based logic is really good. I tried (re)-using the MAP-IT screen which gives me the list of all caches nearest my home co-ordinates and lists the ones I have not done yet but in a graphical view as opposed to a table view. Previously I’d written this facility off as useless outside the US as it doesn’t show you any street level detail that you would get in the US locations, but it does show you the relative positions of caches as in the picture.