Archive for November, 2005

Firefox 1.5 Released

The new version of Firefox, Firefox 1.5 has been released. Straight from the release notes:

  • Automated update to streamline product upgrades. Notification of
    an update is more prominent, and updates to Firefox may now be half a
    megabyte or smaller. Updating extensions has also improved.
  • Faster browser navigation with improvements to back and forward button performance.
  • Drag and drop reordering for browser tabs.
  • Improvements to popup blocking.
  • Clear Private Data feature provides an easy way to quickly remove personal data through a menu item or keyboard shortcut.
  • Answers.com is added to the search engine list.
  • Improvements to product usability including descriptive error
    pages, redesigned options menu, RSS discovery, and “Safe Mode”
    experience.
  • Better accessibility including support for DHTML accessibility
    and assistive technologies such as the Window-Eyes 5.5 beta screen
    reader for Microsoft Windows. Screen readers read aloud all available
    information in applications and documents or show the information on a
    Braille display, enabling blind and visually impaired users to use
    equivalent software functionality as their sighted peers.
  • Report a broken Web site wizard to report Web sites that are not working in Firefox.
  • Better support for Mac OS X (10.2 and greater) including profile migration from Safari and Mac Internet Explorer.
  • New support for Web Standards including SVG, CSS 2 and CSS 3, and JavaScript 1.6.
  • Many security enhancements.

Point your browser here to get the latest version.

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Use Encarta from MSN

I found this one over on Greg Huges’ blog this afternoon. All you do is add encarta@conversagent.com as a contact in MSN Messenger then open a conversation window. The first thing I asked was, “what time is it?”Try it out, it is very cool!

I am definately not going to get anything done for the next few hours……

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The Ultimate Troubleshooting Pack

I’ve been working as a Tier-2 support person for some time now and there seems to be a number of tools that I use frequently to get out of trouble.

 

 

    • Ethereal – The best Packet Capture tool you can get for windows.

 

    • Adaware – My preferred adware removal tool.

 

    • Stinger – A tool developed by McAfee that is a stand-alone utility that detects and removes the most recent/popular viruses. It is the fastest virus scanning tool around.

 

    • BartPE – A bootable CD that boots a reduced version of Windows XP. This is the ultimate debugging tool! It allows you to boot a PC into a Windows PE like environment and scan for viruses/adaware, backup files, browse the next, partition disks, restore deleted files….the list is endless.(A MUST HAVE!!)

 

    • RootKit Revealer – If you don’t know what a RootKit is then I’d suggest a bit of googling. This is the best tool to detect if you’ve got one.

 

    • TCPView – An excellent utility from Sysinternals that lets you see all the active connections on a machine.

 

Stayed tunned, I’ll update this post as I use the tools.

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New IPAQ with faulty screen

I purchased an HP IPAQ from GraysOnline.com.au a few weeks ago. It arrived on friday and after unpacking it I noticed that the screen was behaving really strange. The ‘display’ of the picture was fine but it was really inconsistent with the stylus. After trying for several hours to find out what the problem was I decided to make a warranty claim. Since this is a problem with the screen I doubt very much that they will replaced it for free but it is certainly worth a try. I’ll keep you all updated on the progress.

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A blog entry a day

I’ve been neglecting my blog:( Well as of today it will be an entry a day.:)

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Windows XP Setup and a Hard Drive with Linux

A few days ago I had to install Windows XP on a PC that I was selling to a friend. This usually simply exercised turned into a night of lost sleep because Windows XP apparently doesn’t like hard drives formatted with Linux. I popped the Windows XP disk in the drive, pressed any key to continue and then….nothing. I tried another Windows XP cd, thinking the last one must have been faulty. Nothing, just a black screen. I swapped out the CD drive and tried again, nothing! In desperation I tried the Linux (Fedora Core 4) CD which worked perfectly. Grrrr!

I then tried an old Windows 2000 cd I had and strangely it worked. Bermused, I formatted the drive with the Windows 2000 disk cancelled setup and then tried to boot off the Windows XP disk; it work first time. For some strange reason Windows XP setup just didn’t like the fact that I previously had Linux installed. It would be interesting to hear from someone at Microsoft about the reasons for this problem….

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Finished University

Finally after four years of toil I’ve finished my Bachelor of Information Technology. Now I can put BInfoTech after my name on business cards:) It is such a good feeling, almost the same as that feeling when you finish school. It’s like you can now do all the things that you couldn’t before because you were studying but don’t want to do them. You couldn’t wipe the smile off my face if you tried.

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Exporting and Importing Dialup and VPN Connections

I’m in the middle of creating an SOE (Standard Operating Environment) and found a neat little way to import and export Dialup and VPN settings. Go into your network connections dialog and create the connections that you wish to export. Then go to C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\Network\Connections\Pbk and copy the file called rasphone.pbk. The next time you need to create those connection you just copy the file to that location. Or if you are building an unattended installed or network install of Windows XP place the file in your $OEM$ dir like so, $OEM$\$Docs\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\Network\Connections\Pbk.

(Be aware that if you are doing a dialup connection you may need to manually edit the connection if you have imported a .pbk from another machine that does not share the same modem.)

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