Month: July 2006

vncserver on ubuntu

Discovered that if you turn on vncserver in ubuntu it doesn’t default to asking for a password and it also defaults to let everyone access it (or at least it did on my installation). This can be fixed by going to System/Preferences/Remote Desktop and checking the box to require a password

xcopy is not always my friend :-(

For some reason, one of my xcopy’s did not copy the data but just the directory structure so I’ve lost 35gb worth of downloads and cd images. VERY annoying. I think i’ve got them on another hard disk somewhere but I’ll have to find it. It also wiped out my music but I know I have that safe on my mp3 player – all 35 gb of that!

I’m really thinking that the moral of the story is not to be cheap when upgrading a hard disk and get a really big one so you don’t have to keep shuffling data around when doing upgrades!

Upgrade time

I’ve been busy this morning. I re-ghosted my windows xp partition and then reloaded it back onto my secondary disk. The performance still stays about the same so I’ll be wiping the secondary disk back to HP’s recovery cd and reloading all of the applications again *shudder*. As this is a fairly long post there is more in the extended entry.

New firefox with useful update notification!

There’s a new version of firefox out now and the notification in the current version has actually been pretty useful. Rather than telling me there is a new version, I download it and *then* discover that most of the extensions I have won’t work, this time the installation gives me the ability to find out which extensions are not set to work with the new version. The only downside is that most of the extensions that it wouldnt work with are currently disabled in the version that I am running at the moment.

Image ghosting woe’s

I’ve been trying to backup the main pc at home as it’s getting really really slow for a 1 year old pc. Kristen blames it on all the stuff I keep installing on it which is probably true. The weird thing is that I can’t see anything in task manager or perfmon that shows why it is so slow. CPU and memory usage is low yet the machine sometimes takes ages to respond so it’s a reinstall time.

However, before doing that I wanted to image the hard disk – I’ve been attempting to do this since Saturday now. MicroCenter were doing a 160gb hard disk for $40 after rebates so I thought I’d ghost the original disk to my external usb disk and then restore the image to the second disk. (No link as the rebate was only valid until Saturday)

I had several attempts of doing this, but found that the pc would freeze whilst in the middle of the image. Yesterday morning I started the image off and when I came home from work it was still going…. until I shredded something and it crashed ghost with an error back to dos.

I then tried Acronis true image which said it would take 20 hours to ghost the image (of 40gb!) but again this morning it had frozen after running overnight.
By the end of last night I was really fed up with the thing as it shouldn’t be this difficult so I went to sleep and decided to try again this evening.

I’ve a feeling that for some reason my external usb disk is being detected as a USB1 disk instead of USB2 which is why the original ghosting is taking forever.

I’ve now had the idea of ghosting the image direct to the new hard disk from the old one – if that works (which is giving me a realistic time of about an hour to ghost) I may be able to copy the ghost image back to the original disk and then restore it back over to the new disk.

Once I have a working ghost source I can scrub the new disk and reinstall from scratch and also see if I can get vista on the machine too……

Geek Food?

geekfood.jpg You know your wife is a geek when she mentions that there are 10 kinds of geek food, French fries and Onion rings 🙂 Photo quickly mashed up from Judy Baxter after a search on flickr
This was after a discussion on the geek dinner that I hope to go to in August as part of the In The Trenches. However I’m not sure how long it would take to get to Cleveland – 2.5 hours according to google.

Voicemail working again.

If you’ve been trying to get hold of us, our incoming phone is now working properly again. I think my voice over ip number was finally cut off and as Vonage was simul-ringing that number, everyone was getting the busy signal. Not any more. I’ve also got the vtech phone (with answerphone) on beta test at the moment and it seems to work pretty well so far.


I managed to get the pocket pc image to work properly over the emulator although the first time I set up the activesync on the client it worked ok but it didn’t seem to work immediately, data would only get transferred when I hit sync. However after rebooting the pocketpc it started to sync immediately – it really was pretty cool to see it in action. It doesn’t seem to synchronise sent or deleted items immediately though – thats pretty strange.
Unfortunately for some weird reason Microsoft have disabled the print screen button from working when the emulator is running so I can’t show you any screen shots of it whilst running.

I can’t get the smart phone working as for some reason it decides to bind the network card to my vpn connection (which isn’t going anywhere) rather than my wifi card that is in the laptop. Using a parameter of /p 000102040d23 (substituting the mac address of the network card) should give you network connectivity but not on the smartphone. Instead I get a very annoying “Your Internet connection is not configured properly. Please verify your settings in Data Connections.” This even occurs with using internet explorer so I know it’s not an activesync issue.

PocketPC Emulator

Microsoft have released a Windows Mobile 5 emulator that you can run on your pc, normally for developing software for the windows mobile. However, you can also use this to test and debug the setup of Direct Push with Microsoft Exchange 2003 service pack2. This is great to try before you blow up a users phone as you test stuff out. Seeing as though Direct Push has only just started being available on the phones, it is unrealistic to know how to get it working out of the box.