Month: December 2006

Belated Happy Christmas!

Sorry this is late but I hope everyone had a great Christmas and have a wonderful new year….
I came down with a cold on the Wednesday before Christmas after working 12 hours in a cold airconditioned room and catching it from Kristen on the Monday previous. The annoying thing was that my throat was sore for 2 days and I knew the cold was on it’s way but it took ages before it started to hit in earnest. I was off sick on Thursday and Friday (but still got calls from work) and Saturday and Sunday I was still coughing and sneezing a little (and still got calls from work). Sunday I felt much better and we had 2 christmas services which were nice although the evening service was not very well attended – I think most people had either settled in for the evening or had gone to visit family and friends. (We had to drive back from some friends after spending a wonderful afternoon laughing at “my little ghetto pony” – a pony made from a plastic toy box upended with a pompom tail, cucumber neck and a lambs head – a very funny frankenstein contraption but the child loved it).
Monday was Christmas day, of course, and we opened presents at our house (well some of them- the order I placed with Shutterfly for Kristen’s present didn’t turn up until Boxing Day despite ordering it before the cutoff and paying for priority handling) and then headed over to her parents for Lunch – fondue and tea – Egg Rolls and English Apple Pie – hardly the traditional Christmas Meal. I enjoyed the meal but it did feel weird not having Roast Turkey and all the trimmings, Christmas Cake and Baked Alaska (the latter we had for Thanksgiving instead). Thankfully there were no calls from work.
Tuesday (yesterday) was meant to be a day off from work as the office was closed but started with pages from work as the monitoring system detected a customers box down – turns out that isp hosting their dns had both dns servers unavailable and there was no 24 hour support or phone number easily visible on the website and there was still an hour to go for the company to start work. Eventually one of the dns servers came back online so they were ok (although the customer was actually ok as their outgoing access was fine – just incoming mail and web hosting was unreachable by name). At the same time I had calls about the phone system from another company (this phone system has been in for 13 months and I am still debugging, supporting and fixing it on a daily basis) and several helpdesk tickets that needed answering to as they weren’t taken care of whilst I was off sick.
Eventually I was able to unplug the laptop and go out to Microcenter to get a new computer, monitor and peripherals for us – more on that later…….
So today is Wednesday, I woke up early and I have no idea what is in store for me at the office today – should be interesting…..
Friday we are off to a wedding so a very short work week! (Thats the good great news)

Rev drive causing bad_pool_header

Yet another reason I hate Rev drives – had a client whose pc would blue screen when the backup would start to a rev drive. The error was bad_pool_header and fortunately I got an error in imdrvfsf.sys By downloading the software drivers from Iomega and rebooting the backups are now able to write to the disk. A quick search on google for bad_pool_header iomega shows this is a very common problem with iomega’s solution being to pay $20 for an upgrade to the software (or to just ignore the problem). Hopefully this post will help someone out but please note that this page is not the iomega support forum

Microsoft Exam Insurance

Microsoft have just announced their Exam Insurance package where you get a free retake if you fail, 25% off your next exam if you pass and a years subscription to technet plus (which contains full versions of a lot of microsoft software) – I’ve requested details on pricing as their website doesn’t mention it and unfortunately nobody is answering the phone at the nearest exam office.

Automatic backup of sql express

Microsoft have crippled the sql express edition such that you can’t do a scheduled backup in the same way that you can with the standard sql servers. However by running a backup and saving the commands to a script you can then run it – but the method to use it is not obvious.
The installation of sql express edition gives a management interface to create the script and by using the command sqlcmd -S LOCALHOST\SQLEXPRESS -i backup.sql -o output.txt you can then run this using your favourite scheduling program. Thanks to Ryec on the Microsoft Forums, (scroll down)