Wednesday, December 27, 2006

UPS Ship Notification, Tracking Number.........

Does anyone have the same experience?
Every time i get a QuantumView notification I always get emailed twice.
Do the smart people at UPS not trust email? What's up with that?
If the first did not reach the recipient (me) then why should the second email?
And besides it smells like SPAM.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

User Assist Keys

Hmm, what does this do?

user assist keys

Windows Explorer keeps track of the programs you run in the UserAssist registry keys, which are ROT13 encrypted. Some people say this is spyware behavior of Windows.
This program will display the decrypted entries and allow you to delete them. I've also reverse-engineered the binary data stored in the entries: it's a counter and a timestamp.
Download here

Creating PDFs with PDFCreator

Note to self: Very nice article and program

For many Windows users who want to create PDF files, Adobe Acrobat is overkill. Acrobat has more functions and features than they'll generally use, and with a price tag of $299 ($449 for the professional edition), Acrobat costs more than many people want to spend. Luckily, Windows users can create PDFs from any application using the GPL-licensed PDFCreator. Built on top of Ghostscript, a popular free PostScript interpreter, PDFCreator is fast and configurable. For most purposes, it's a great alternative to Acrobat.


Sunday, December 17, 2006

Funny comic from Squirrel Hill Magazine

I saw this in the Squirrel Hill Magazine and thought I would share.

Squirrel Hill Landmarks BY: David Coulson

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

HP very annoying broken page

I am in the market to purchase an HP server, I need it NOW. so I click on the link on this page since the offer is exactly what I need

and i get this...
DO you have any idea how MAD I AM!!!
I don't have time for this $#%$#
I also don't have a choice since I still need a server

Sunday, November 19, 2006

new yahoo feature, needs work

So there is this buried feature on Yahoo mail....Wyoming is a real, but according to Yahoo!, Georgia and Florida are not, sorry guys.

Note: The broken line below the 'place' signifies a linkable object

Thursday, November 09, 2006

X4200: The ILOM

One of the new technologies that I found fascinating is the ILOM. (Integrated Lights Out Manager). Basically it is a hardware layer that is below all other standard components on the server. Meaning it has its own NIC and can redirect all inputs to the web, using a really fancy JAVA app. When Window needed the SCSI drivers, normally you have to put those drivers on a floppy and load them into the windows install. But what if there is no floppy drive? Then you could slipstream windows onto new media with the drivers included.
You can use ILOM and the floppy redirection. Yup, it picked up my floppy drive from my workstation and directed it back into ILOM and used the drivers from there.

Just to clarify how low this ILOM layer is, you can actually see (and configure) BIOS configuration remotely, something I had never seen before.

Neat stuff!!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

X4200: Powering it up

That was tough. For all of you that thought that this server was turn-key, well it ain't.
I'll explain.
I plug in the power cords, (there is two of them) and am greeted with that hypersonic whoosh that accompanies all new servers. That's cool. Then it goes through POST, HD, etc.. till GRUB. Grub counts down 10 seconds for solaris 10 to boot, and then .............................nothing.
Just a tiny flashing cursor in the top left corner of the screen. Thats it.
Here is where I went wrong. Read the manual, no seriously, I never read the manual, but here Iwas completely stuck without it. First off I had to change the IP settings of one on the NICS (net 0) to DHCP.
Then I follow the instructions here, step by step (mostly for the fun of it) and setup Solaris 10.
But to be honest, I had to install Windows Server 2003 'cause that is what I know. More on that later.

And Mr. Fix It Man I had some pictures of the internals but i have since misfiled them, when I find them I will post.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Urgent Ingenuity (baby style)

My brother recently related to me a story of when his daughter was born. As you know most hospitals do not provide the best food and certainly not in the middle of the night. So planning ahead he grabbed a package of frozen pita, thinking that surely after the hours of labor, the pita would have been defrosted. My niece had other plans and was born shortly after they arrived at the hospital. Since my sister-in-law does not generally eat frozen pita, my brother took the pita to the baby warmer. Baby and pita then toasted nicely together under its warm rays, when they where done, Mommy and Daughter both ate.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

SBA 2006 Memory Hog (MSDE)

SBA 2006 / MSDE is really quite the memory hog. The only other application that has it beat is Firefox (oy).
Right now it is using 115,224k. Now I have to figure out how to cap its memory usage....

Microsoft Small Business Accounting 2006 Part 2

The welcome screen is useful and informative however MS is falling into the same pit of QB, by bombarding us with advertisements and all kind of useless information. Although not nearly as bad as QB is today, but more like QB five years ago..............

here are some more screen shots.
The Welcome Screen
Note I have customized my own company and got rid of the 'spotlight' pane but upgrading to SP3 brought that back ... grrrr... I got rid of it again.

'Customers' Window Note the similarity to QB

Here comes the Ads; Note the powered by ADP

Microsoft Small Business Accounting 2006

Microsoft Small Business Accounting 2006 is part of the MS action pack that recently purchased. I needed an accounting solution for my own company anyway, so i gave it a whirl. First impressions are good so far. Remember that I am a computer guy not an accountant.
Setup via the wizard was easy enough. The wizard actually is a tool that you can bring up as often as you like in order to further tweak and configure SBA. In the past i have used QB 2003, and find that SBA is almost exactly the same. MS definitely went after the QB crowd, even releasing a QB import tool. (UPDATE: the tool need not be installed as all new versions have it built in) The company file (as it is called by QB users) is actually a text file with 'directions' to the MSDE instance that gets installed. Looks like that was done just for the QB crowd that has a hard time with changing from "file->open". Kind of deceptive if you think that you can just backup that file. (note the tiny file size)

Reporting was simple, though i have not to customized any reports. One slick feature is the Cash basis vs. Accrual basis toggle. It actually works and does not have the known QB issue with switching from cash to accrual.

So far so good.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Excellent Firefox Tweeks

One thing that I did not like in FireFox 2.0 was the close (x) on each tab instead on on the side like in Firefox 1.5. Thankfully this site from Gina Trapani has instructions on how to revert the behavior to the 1.5 style.

From the site
  • Key: browser.tabs.closeButtons
  • Modified Value: 3 (revert to Firefox 1.5 behavior)
  • Alternate Modified Value: 2 (don't display any close tab buttons)
  • Default: 1 (display close buttons on all tabs)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The New IE 7.0 Is out too...

I have no plans to install the new IE on regular machine. Ill give a whirl on my test laptop. I would wait at least a month or so, as it is a major rewrite of IE and is subject to all kinds of nasty surprises. IE 7.0 while be released as a critical update, so unless you would like to fall to the whims of Automatic update, follow this link to IntelliAdmin for instructions (and a utility) to block IE 7.0

Pictures of the x4200

Here she is

Note the small (big) box
(never mind the boxes in the background)

Yup all that box for just two power cables.

Nicely packaged


Fierce Powerful looking!

Firefox 2.0 is Out

As most of you have heard (read), Firefox 2.0 is out. I have been using RC2.0 on a test laptop, for a while now so the new features are not a big surprise. I also have updated some of my called add-ons. Some are broken, most work. The one that really need updated is the dnsstuff toolbar, hopefully Dan Martens of Western I.T. Group will provide an update for Firefox 2.0!

what did i miss...

Loads apparently...
I was derailed for a month or so, so I will try to catch up as fast as I can
Anyway... where were we
Oh, the sun server.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Friday, September 15, 2006

woohoo, new server on its way

I just received my email confirmation that I have been accepted into the Sun's Try and Buy program. The x4200 server is officially on its way. OK maybe it was not that hard, but I like playing with new technology, and this is a phenomenal opportunity. So, ya I am excited :)

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Update on that really cool server

I played a little phone tag, and got in touch with a very nice lady named Carla. She took down my credit card number. We swapped some more details about the program, and in a few days I will get a confirmation regarding shipping and the like. Great.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

IntelliAdmin VS Digg

It seems that IntelliAdmin and digg are embroiled in a lengthy Broohaha over the prefetch folder. This is a long standing argument that is based on an misunderstanding of what is being achieved.
IntelliAdmin is pointing out that in order to increase Startup performance, delete the contents of the prefetch folder.
Digg is saying that applications will then start slower.
Both are right.
But then we have a post here, and here, with a response here, and more from IntelliAdmin here

Phew, It's getting personal.

I have been contacted by sun for more info

Well, I got three emails in one day (09/09), all looking like spam. In reality they where emails from Sun. One was a sales invoice and summary or the system that I ordered. One was an email asking for credit card details and a good phone number for them to call to complete this order and a 5 day deadline to reply. The next, was a reminder email with the exact same information of the previous one with a 3 day deadline (received four hours later). Go figure.

I replied, only once :)

Update: Clarification, the Credit Card details are only for preauthorization, they will not be charging my card at this time. (hopefully they never will, wink wink)

Friday, September 08, 2006

Implementing Exchange 2003 Message Journaling

Good article for those orginizations that require detailed copies of employee emails

Exchange 2003 provides a native Journaling feature which allows you to archive all incoming and outgoing e-mails for a specific mailbox store. Beginning with Exchange 2003 SP1 you can download EXEJCFG.EXE from the Exchange 2003 download site. EXEJCFG enhances the current Exchange archiving features to capture recipients on distribution lists, BCC recipients and other message details. In this article I will show you how to implement Exchange 2003 Journaling for e-mails.


Why windows takes so long to start up

The good folks over at IntelliAdmin have a good article on Windows startup and maintenance, my favorite that I did right away (it worked too!) was,

Simply browse to the windows folder (Ex: C:\Windows) and under there you should see the prefetch folder. Go into the prefetch folder and delete all the files (Careful! It should look like this c:\windows\prefetch)

they also have a new version of remote reboot released

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Funny chain of events led me to the Sun's Try and Buy

I was reading the Scobleizer, he mentioned Jonathan Schwartz. I deviated to Matt Dillon (hence the post below) and then stumbled upon the free server post from Jonathan. The rest is history. (although honestly I don't know if the x4200 is the same as the Niagara) Oh well, lots to learn.

About the Try and Buy program from Sun.......

I have been thinking about the Try and Buy program from Sun, and besides for the, oh no what have a got myself into, the program is intriguing from a marketing perspective.

Microsoft has entered the server market relatively late in the game. However they have gotten as big as they have mostly because people, like me, grew up on Microsft PC's, when the opportunity came for a talk about servers we naturally thought of Microsoft first. We installed them maintained them and thought of little else but Microsft and Intel computers.

In this program Sun is firing back and saying "hey you want to play with our machine too?" In my case yes I do, it will give me a chance to see the rest of the computing world. Often time I hear from my brother (a real Linux nut) that wintels are a minor part of the real computer world.

So here is my foray into the big leagues. We'll see how it goes.

I should add that for years I have been recommending Dells, workstations and servers. Mostly because I never had an HP/Compaq so Dell became the choice vender for me to recommend. They have reasonably good products, fast shipping, custom configuration, and decent warranty. So why not Dell?

I wonder how my impressions, knowledge and recommendations will change after meeting Mr. Sun.

Try and Buy from Sun

WOW, very cool program from sun. I just submitted my application for the x4200, the most powerful server in this program. My plan is to see how far I can load this machine up. I must admit I have never used a Sun server and am excited about the prospect. If all goes well I will be recommending this to a specific client. Stay tuned, this will be fun.

see here Try and Buy

Matt Dillon: the legal thing...

Matt Dillon, the GC of SUN, has sparked a renewed interest into the Reebok Rules. The rules are a good read for all, not just attorneys. Enjoy!

Leading, cutting, or bleeding

So what is it...

The Leading Edge of ............ , The Cutting Edge of............ , or The Bleeding Edge of ..........

which one is the at the forefront of which?

2007 Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Save as PDF or XPS

Well here it is, the download that has Adobe all twisted out of shape. PDF is a document standard that is proprietary to Adobe. However at the end of the day is still a public format that anyone can use. Microsoft however, is very late in supporting PDF's natively. Edward Macnaghten had an excellent article here detailing this spat further.


Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Solution Details


To resolve the issue:

1. Close Outlook and delete the cached files on ..\Documents and Settings\UserName\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\FORMS.

Note: The path differs on each user’s environment.

2. Open the Approved Senders list.

3. Open a Spam message and then click View Approved Sender List.

After executing Steps 2 and 3, and the Approved Senders list is not yet recovered, delete the Spam Mail folder manually. EUQ housekeeping will recover your Spam Mail folder.

4. Once EUQ recovered the Spam Mail folder, open the Approved Senders list by doing Step 3."


Solution Details

Very odd/cool solution but hey it worked, 'cause its so simple.

To resolve the issue:

1. Go to a client that is also running Outlook 2002/2003.

2. Go to ..\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office10 and look for the Outlvbs.dll file.

3. Copy the file to the ..\Office10 directory of the Terminal Server client."


Gmail Shortcuts (printable cheatsheet)

Ok, I like keybaord shortcuts.


Monday, August 28, 2006

ITT: Restoring Outlook Web Access (OWA) (Solved)

Ever had one of those days .. where you accidentily delete your Default Website in ISS, and all the exchange stuff along with it? :D

Have no fear, MS KB is here!"


Saturday, August 19, 2006

Microsoft Windows XP



How to Protect Insiders from Social Engineering Threats

Ok, I admit I was a bit shocked to see this article come down the pipe from Microsoft, but they are finally getting around to the realization that security starts with the people not the computers. Its a good read. 37 pages.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

The IP routing table

This kind of stuff always gave me a headache however I MUST digest it. GRRR
The IP routing table
Every computer that runs TCP/IP makes routing decisions. These decisions are controlled by the IP routing table. To display the IP routing table on computers running Windows Server 2003 operating systems, you can type route print at a command prompt.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Download details: MDAC 2.7 SP1 Refresh

From the Microsft Download Center comes this...

"The MDAC 2.7 SP1 Refresh release provides an updated version of MDAC 2.7 SP1 that includes several important bug fixes."

Ok, now go back and read it again, got it.
Now, whatever happened to the increments normally used when releasing new versions of software. Oh wait this is the company that went from a version number, to a year, to another year (with random letters at the same time) then some random letters (now with a year name, released at the same time), then back to random letters again, (with a year version at the same time). If you did not get that then here is goes.
Windows 3.1
Windows 95
Windows 98 (NT, at the same time)
Window ME (2000, at the same time)
Windows XP (server 2003, at the same time)

Throw in some Windows Bob and Vista, and you really get a nice consistent company.
Never Mind.

Uh Oh, Deformed Li-Ion battery

While a lot less dramatic then the laptops that burst into flames (here and here) this battery is definitely distressed.

The battery originally had perfect right angles. (Its hard to photograph)

It has now become so bloated that the cover on the back of this cordless phone (yes I know it looks like a calculator), does not close. The phone is actually very slick and can only be used with a headset. But anyway, now I have to find a new battery for it. BTW this probably has nothing to do with Uniden, it just happens to be in their phone.

See also this link for the relevant Wikipedia entry on the Lithium ion battery.

Monday, July 31, 2006

My FireFox Extensions

Some of you have asked me what extensions I use in my toolbox well here they are...

Notice that I do not yet have a RSS reader within Firefox. But I have my eye on Wizz RSS.
Also, I used to use the Yahoo! Mail Notifier extension, however that kept crashing my browser on startup, so out it went.

eConsultant : Ultimate Web Developer Lists, Web 2.0 Directory, Technical Tips and Lists

Wow. An impressive index of useful information (to me anyway), in a craigslist style format.

See Link

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Thats too funny, check out the new IE 7

Screen shot just in case MS sues (probably will) and take over the site.

oy, Verizon...What happened to Customer Service.

I am not even a customer yet, and Verizon has managed to piss me off!
Here is what happened.
I call the number (877) 483-5898 posted on their web site to order new DSL service. ( I am ordering a dry loop so I must call, can't do that online)
They very nice lady that picks up right away says that she handles New York customers only.
hmm, OK I can handle that; she gives me a new number for Pennsylvania (800)660-2215.
I call that number and am directed to the residential new customer queue.
Then a message comes on and says sorry we have too many callers. Please call later, and HANGS UP.

The two things that bug me....
  1. Why don't they post a PA number as well as the other NY number, is it some kind of secret?
The kicker is that if I go to Comcast the service is worse........

oy, what to do?

I found the PA number under
"Residential Local & Long Distance" here, which you would think is not for DSL, but it is!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Using Outlook via the Internet (not OWA)

From the help file of Server 2003 (yes an ugly copy/paste)

Using Outlook via the Internet

Users Guide (not admins)

If you are using Microsoft® Office Outlook® 2003, you can connect to the computer running Windows® Small Business Server through the Internet using the feature called RPC over HTTP. This means you can remotely access your server e-mail account from the Internet when you are working outside your organization's firewall. You do not need security-related hardware or software (such as smart cards or security tokens), and you do not have to establish a virtual private network (VPN) connection to the server.

Comparing RPC over HTTP and Outlook Web Access

When using RPC over HTTP to access your mailbox, you get the full functionality of Outlook 2003. For example, you can work offline, use Microsoft Office Word 2003 as your e-mail editor, and easily organize your mailbox.

To use Outlook via the Internet

Ensure that the following requirements have been met on the client computer:

Verify that the computer is running Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 1 or later

  • Click Start, right-click My Computer, and then click Properties.
    The version of the operating system and service pack is displayed under System. If you do not see a service pack version, there is no service pack installed.

Verify that Windows update Q331320 is installed on the computer (not required if you are running Windows XP Service Pack 2 or later)

  1. Click Start, click Control Panel, and then open Add or Remove Programs.
  2. Under Currently installed programs, search for the item Windows XP Hotfix (SP2) Q331320.
  3. If the item is not present, go to the Microsoft Web site ( and follow the instructions to download and install it.

Verify that the computer is running Outlook 2003 or later

  1. Open Outlook.
  2. Click the Help menu, and then click About Microsoft Office Outlook. The version number appears at the top of the box.

Verify that the computer trusts the certificate used by the server

  1. Open Internet Explorer, and then in the address bar type:

    • If the certificate is trusted, a certificate warning does not appear. In this case, continue with step 1 under Ensure that you have an Outlook profile configured for the server.
    • If the certificate is not trusted, a warning appears. Click View Certificate, click Install Certificate, and then follow the instructions.

Ensure that you have an Outlook profile configured for the server

  1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
    • If you are viewing Control Panel in the default Category view, switch to Classic view, and then double-click Mail.
    • If you are viewing Control Panel in Classic view, double-click Mail.
  2. In the Mail Setup dialog box, click Show Profiles. If your profile appears in the list, select your profile, click Properties, click E-mail Accounts, select View or change existing e-mail accounts, and then click Next. If your profile does not appear, open Outlook and follow the instructions to create a profile before proceeding.
    • If Microsoft Exchange Server does not appear in the list, the existing profile is not associated with a Microsoft Exchange Server e-mail account. Click Cancel, and then click Close. Continue with step 3 to add a profile.
    • If there is an existing Microsoft Exchange Server profile, continue with step 3 under Configure the computer for RPC over HTTP.
  3. Click Add. The New Profile dialog box appears.
  4. In the Profile Name box, type a name for the new profile, and then click OK. The E-mail Accounts dialog box appears.
  5. Under E-mail, select Add a new e-mail account, and then click Next. The Server Type dialog box appears.
  6. Click Microsoft Exchange Server, and then click Next.
  7. Continue with step 4 under Configure the computer for RPC over HTTP.

Configure the computer for RPC over HTTP

  1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
    • If you are viewing Control Panel in the default Category view, switch to Classic view, and then double-click Mail.
    • If you are viewing Control Panel in Classic view, double-click Mail.
  2. In the Mail Setup dialog box, click E-mail accounts, click View or change existing e-mail accounts, and then click Next.
  3. In the E-mail accounts dialog box, click Microsoft Exchange Server, and then click Change.
  4. In the Microsoft Exchange Server box, type the local name of the Exchange server:

  5. In the User Name box, type the user name that you use to log on to the Remote Web Workplace. Do not click Check Name.
  6. In the Exchange Server settings page, click More Settings.
  7. On the Connection tab, under Exchange over the Internet, select Connect to my Exchange mailbox using HTTP, and then click Exchange Proxy Settings. The Exchange Proxy Settings dialog box appears.
  8. Under Use this URL to connect to my proxy server for Exchange, type the following URL:

  9. Select Connect using SSL only, and then select Mutually authenticate the session when connecting with SSL.
  10. In the Principal name for proxy server box, type the following text:

  11. Select On slow networks, connect using HTTP first, then connect using TCP/IP.
  12. Under Proxy authentication settings, select Basic Authentication.
  13. Click OK, and then click OK again. Click Next, and then click Finish. Click Close.
  14. In the Mail dialog box, if Always use this profile is selected, choose the newly configured profile.
  15. Open Outlook and type your Windows Small Business Server user name (in the format ADdomain\user name) and password. You can now work with your Outlook mailbox.

My not-in-warranty UPS

(Pictures Below)

A friend of mine gave me a old UPS of his. The batteries had run out and he just went out and bought a new one. It sat in my closet till my brother built his own. Then the gears started turning and I decided build my very own.
Now keep in mind that this will void your warranty and is not for the meek.

  1. UPS (free)
  2. Eight feet of No.10 Gage wire ($4)
  3. Terminal Clamps ($1.99)
  4. 'Big Fat Wire' between batteries (optional) ($3)
  5. Marine deep Cycle batteries (approx $50) (you may need two, wired in series)
  6. Two wire nuts
  • Take the old battery from the UPS and return it to a Battery recycling center
  • No. really, you should! It will not cost you anything!
  • Cut the eight foot wire in half.
  • Attach them to the terminal clamps (not to the battery yet!)
  • Clip the ends of the wire that are in the UPS (strip about an inch)
  • Twist the eight foot wires (now four feet) to the ends in the UPS
  • Screw the wire nuts on TIGHT (there will be many AMPS flowing here)
  • Attach the red (positive) to the plus on the battery
  • Attach the black (negative) to the minus on the battery
  • (if you need 24v, like me, use the plus on one battery and the minus on the other, on two different 12v batteries, then attach the 'big fat one' between the other plus and other minus, don't short it!)
  • Charge overnight
YAY, your done.
If you did everything right you should have many many hours of runtime (depending on your load)

Marine Deep Cycle Battery

The Red (Positive) Terminal

In the cabinet (sorry about the power wire in the picture, it is live, cant move it that well)

The Big Fat Wire

Friday, July 14, 2006

Scobleizer - Tech Geek Blogger » Cool IT search engine

Scobleizer - Tech Geek Blogger » Cool IT search engine:
" is an interesting IT-focused search engine I just found. It brings up results crawled from major IT publications and other sources."

Penetration Test

This is a real neat visual representation of all methods of attack on any particular device.
Check it out here

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Microsoft Exchange Server Public Folder DAV-based Administration Tool

I came across this issue today on an Exchange 2003 Server

"The mail proxy for this folder can not be found. This may be due to replication delays. The mail enabled pages will not be shown.

ID: c1038a21
Exchange system Manager"

Apparently this happens when the store originates in an exchange 5.5 Environment. This one did (via exchange 2000!)

Download here

  • Connect to the DB
  • Navigate to the offending folder (or the top level and check the first check box, not checked above)
  • right click
  • Property Editor
(you will see the above window)
  • in the drop down box find the above property
  • change the radio button to clear and hit execute
  • Close
  • you may need to restart the information store
  • go back to your folder
  • right click
  • mail enable (Thats what you wanted right?)

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Microsoft Exchange Server: Tools for Exchange Server 2003

Microsoft Exchange Server: Tools for Exchange Server 2003

Main Page -

Main Page - "Software

* Portable USB Apps
* Essential Software Collection
* Free Apps"

Excel password remover

Excel password remover:

"Have you ever forgotten your Excel workbook or sheet password?
Here you can download a FREE Excel add-in that removes/cracks sheet and workbook password protection in Excel®.

NB! This program can't remove file protection, i.e. if you are unable to open the file, this program won't help you. You could try Excel Key to remove file protection. If you need to crack the VBA-password try this one.

This Excel add-in (password.xla) works fine in Excel 5.0 and above (including Excel 2000, XP and 2003).
This program will remove passwords of any length, also passwords containing special characters."

Monday, July 10, 2006

Video Gallery: Securely publishing Exchange 2003 OWA using ISA Server 2004

Video Gallery: Securely publishing Exchange 2003 OWA using ISA Server 2004

Windows Server 2003 Administration Tools Pack

Download details: Windows Server 2003 Administration Tools Pack

Internet Information Services (IIS) 6.0 Resource Kit Tools

Download details: Internet Information Services (IIS) 6.0 Resource Kit Tools

Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools

Download details: Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools

Microsoft Exchange Server Information Store Viewer (MDBVU32)

Download details: Microsoft Exchange Server Information Store Viewer (MDBVU32)

Creating A Certificate For Outlook Web Access 2003 Using SelfSSL

Creating A Certificate For Outlook Web Access 2003 Using SelfSSL

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Quick overview of TS and RDP

Quote from Help file (Copyrighted by Microsoft)

Remote Administration using Terminal Services

In Microsoft® Windows® Server 2003 family operating systems, Terminal Services technology is the basis for several features that enable you to connect to remote computers and perform administrative tasks.

  • Remote Desktop for Administration (formerly known as Terminal Services in Remote Administration mode) provides remote server management capabilities for Windows Server 2003 family operating systems. Using this feature, you can administer a server from virtually any computer on your network. No license is required for up to two simultaneous remote connections in addition to the server console session. A corresponding desktop version of Remote Desktop for Administration is available on Microsoft® Windows® XP Professional, and is called Remote Desktop.

  • The Remote Desktops MMC snap-in allows you to create remote connections to the console session of multiple terminal servers, as well as computers running Windows 2000 or Windows Server 2003 family operating systems.

  • Remote Desktop Connection, available on Windows Server 2003 family operating systems as well as on Microsoft® Windows® XP operating systems, enables you to log on to a remote computer and perform administrative tasks, even from a client computer that is running an earlier version of Windows.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

There are two rules for success in life:

There are two rules for success in life:

Rule 1: Don't tell people everything you know.

Internet Explorer error "connection timed out" when server does not respond within five minutes

Internet Explorer error "connection timed out" when server does not respond within five minutes:

"1. Add a ReceiveTimeout DWORD value with a data value of ()*1000 in the following registry key:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings
For example, if you want the timeout duration to be 8 minutes, set the ReceiveTimeout data value to 480000 (<480>*1000).
2. Restart your computer.
Note This setting does not work on versions of Internet Explorer that are before Internet Explorer 4.0 SP1."

Business card best practices

Scobleizer - Tech Geek Blogger » Business card best practices

How to safely connect from anywhere to your closed Linux firewall | MDLog:/sysadmin

How to safely connect from anywhere to your closed Linux firewall | MDLog:/sysadmin

Unfortunally Microsoft will never have such a product. Mostly beacuse we MS'er will never change the defaults!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Terminal Server and Citrix troubleshooting

Terminal Server and Citrix troubleshooting

About Vera Noest:
My name is Vera Noest, I am a Dutch women of 50 years old, who lives in Sweden.
I am a physical geographer, nearly turned into an ecologist, turned into a computer system manager.

WOW, I am stunned and very impressed. I will be frank, you have broken the stereotypical mold and proven that computers are not scary or too confusing. Too often when I try to explain computer concepts to people in your age group I see the eyes glazed over look.

Its all FUD I tell ya!

RDP / MSTSC usage switches

Remote Desktop Connection

MSTSC [] [/v: ] [/console] [/f[ullscreen]]
[/w: /h: ] | /Edit"ConnectionFile" | /Migrate | /?

-- specifies the name of an .rdp file for the connection.

/v: -- Specifies the terminal server to which you want to connect.

/console -- connects to the console session of a server.

/f -- Starts the client on full-screen mode

/w: -- specifies the width of the Remote Desktop Screen.

/h: -- specifies the height of the Remote Desktop Screen.

/edit -- Opens the specified .rdp file for editing.

/migrate -- migrates legacy connection files that where created with Client Connection manager to new .rdp connection file.

/? -- generates this Usage message.

Monday, July 03, 2006 Remotely Enable Remote Desktop Remotely Enable Remote Desktop

XCCC: White Paper - Outlook Web Access in Exchange 2000

XCCC: White Paper - Outlook Web Access in Exchange 2000:

"Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) is a tightly integrated
component of Exchange 2000. The architecture of OWA has been completely overhauled since it was introduced in Microsoft Exchange Server version 5.0. Additionally, enhancements to the Exchange 2000 architecture dramatically affect the way OWA works. With these enhancements, OWA offers significantly increased scalability and functionality. This white paper describes OWA in Exchange 2000 and focuses especially on the architecture and deployment of OWA."

MS Exchange Blog : OWA and multiple SMTP domains

MS Exchange Blog : OWA and multiple SMTP domains:

OWA and multiple SMTP domains

If you configure your Exchange 2000 server to receive mail for an additional SMTP domain, you may notice that users with this additional domain as their SMTP address may not be able to access Outlook Web Access. You need to make some configuration changes for this to work.

Let's assume you install your Exchange 2000 server such that all users have an SMTP address in the format of, but later require some users to have the address.

By default, the /exchange virtual directory will point to the domain. Users with the domain will not be able to access OWA using the /exchange virtual directory.

To resolve this issue, you need to create a new HTTP virtual directory, and point this to the recipient policy that you will have created in Exchange System Manager. Here's how to do this:

1. Run Exchange System Manager, and navigate to your Server / Protocols / HTTP / Exchange Virtual Server.

2. Right-click Exchange Virtual Server, and choose New / Virtual Directory.

3. Give this new virtual directory a meaningful name, and ensure that the 'Mailboxes for' radio button is selected.

4. Click the Modify button, and choose the domain.

5. Click the Access tab, and set the authentication options as required.

6. Close the property windows by clicking OK, and you will now see the new virtual directory in Exchange System Manager. It is now important to wait a short while, to allow the DS2MB process to create the virtual directory in the IIS metabase.

You can then use a URL of http://servername/def to access OWA for users with a SMTP address, whereas a URL of http://servername/exchange is used for users with a SMTP address.

Neil Hobson

Friday, June 30, 2006

Printers That Use Ports That Do Not Begin With COM, LPT, or USB Are Not Redirected in a Remote Desktop or Terminal Services Session

Printers That Use Ports That Do Not Begin With COM, LPT, or USB Are Not Redirected in a Remote Desktop or Terminal Services Session:

"1. Click Start, click Run, type regedit, and then click OK.
2. Locate and then click the following key in the registry:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Terminal Server Client\Default\AddIns\RDPDR
3. On the Edit menu, point to New, and then click DWORD Value.
4. Type FilterQueueType, and then press ENTER.
5. On the Edit menu, click Modify.
6. Type FFFFFFFF, and then click OK."

Boom goes the light bulb

Yesterday (06/29/06) at about 7:30pm I was relaxing on the couch when .....boom. Wow what was that. Apparently the fluorescent light bulb exploded in the bathroom. Luckily the bathroom is not used very often, and nobody was in it at the time. Check out the pictures, quite amazing actually. (the bathroom still has that sharp burnt electronics smell)

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Security Developer Center: Columns: Browsing the Web and Reading E-mail Safely as an Administrator

Security Developer Center: Columns: Browsing the Web and Reading E-mail Safely as an Administrator:

Running with an administrative account is dangerous to the health of your computer and your data.' So, whenever someone says they must operate their computers as administrators, I always try to persuade them it's not the correct thing to do from a security perspective. That said, every once in a while I meet someone who has a valid reason. For example, I use one of the computers in my office to install the latest daily build of Windows, and I need to be an administrator to install the OS. However, and this is a big point, I do not read e-mail, browse the Web, or access the Internet in any form when running as an administrator on that machine. And I do not do so because the Web is the source of most of the nasty attacks today.

Worker flicks wrong switch, costs Nova $11 mln - Yahoo! News

That's a big oops.
Worker flicks wrong switch, costs Nova $11 mln - Yahoo! News

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Kevin Mitnick, the great pretender | Newsmakers | CNET

Kevin Mitnick, the great pretender | Newsmakers | CNET

"Rather than overt technical hacks, he was able to convince employees to hand over information that enabled him to hack systems, while redirecting telephone signals to avoid detection by the authorities."

What users hate most about Web sites | InfoWorld | News | 2006-06-14 | By Sandra Rossi, Computerworld Today (Australia)

What users hate most about Web sites | InfoWorld | News | 2006-06-14 | By Sandra Rossi, Computerworld Today (Australia):

"The top five Web site quirks that users hate the most, according to iFocus are:

1. Invasive advertising: Cunnington says users widely despise ads that cover content, ads that flash wildly and ads that chew broadband.

2. Re-inventing the wheel: people do not want to have to learn how to use a site before they can browse it, Cunnington said.

3. 'Leap of faith' links: that means disclosing information on content and file size.

4. Attention-deficit Web sites: 'Users have a special hatred of flashing icons and banners, because they draw the eye away from what is important and hinder their progress,' Cunnington said.

5. War and Peace length: 'A common mistake in Web design is to just [convert] a brochure to the Web. But the Web is its own medium, and communication has to change to reach users. Users are known to read 25 percent slower on the screen than on paper, read fewer words and don't like long pages which require scrolling down,' she said.

Another problem is site blindness. 'We are now seeing right-column blindness, where users do not see information and links down the right hand side of the screen. This occurs because the right hand column has become known for advertising,' Cunnington"

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

XFOR: Telnet to Port 25 to Test SMTP Communication

XFOR: Telnet to Port 25 to Test SMTP Communication

Security Guide for Windows - Random Password Generator

Security Guide for Windows - Random Password Generator:

"The Password Generator allows you to create random passwords that are highly secure and extremely difficult to crack or guess due to an optional combination of lower and upper case letters, numbers and punctuation symbols." What Search Engine Spiders See What Search Engine Spiders See:

"Have you ever wondered exactly what those search engine spiders actually see each time they visit your website?

Wonder no more.....this useful little tool will scan your page and show you the results, as well as provide useful page data such as word density, meta keywords, links, etc."

Wednesday, May 31, 2006 - XP/2K/2003: View uptime of Windows system - XP/2K/2003: View uptime of Windows system: "

Want to know how long it has been since a Windows system was booted?

Using the following command will show the uptime of the system as well as other information:

net statistics workstation

Look for a line such as this near the top of the output:

Statistics since 8/27/2004 10:34 PM"

Best practices for the Encrypting File System

Best practices for the Encrypting File System

Monday, May 22, 2006

Oh boy, we got problems

I found this in the event logs of one of the servers that I manage..

The File Replication Service has detected that the replica set "DOMAIN


Replica root path is : "c:\winnt\sysvol\domain"
Replica root volume is : "\\.\C:"
A Replica set hits JRNL_WRAP_ERROR when the record that it is trying to
read from the NTFS USN journal is not found. This can occur because of
one of the following reasons.

[1] Volume "\\.\C:" has been formatted.
[2] The NTFS USN journal on volume "\\.\C:" has been deleted.
[3] The NTFS USN journal on volume "\\.\C:" has been truncated. Chkdsk
can truncate the journal if it finds corrupt entries at the end of the
[4] File Replication Service was not running on this computer for a
long time.
[5] File Replication Service could not keep up with the rate of Disk IO
activity on "\\.\C:".
Setting the "Enable Journal Wrap Automatic Restore" registry parameter
to 1 will cause the following recovery steps to be taken to
automatically recover from this error state.
[1] At the first poll, which will occur in 5 minutes, this computer
will be deleted from the replica set. If you do not want to wait 5
minutes, then run "net stop ntfrs" followed by "net start ntfrs" to
restart the File Replication Service.
[2] At the poll following the deletion this computer will be re-added
to the replica set. The re-addition will trigger a full tree sync for
the replica set.

WARNING: During the recovery process data in the replica tree may be
unavailable. You should reset the registry parameter described above to
0 to prevent automatic recovery from making the data unexpectedly
unavailable if this error condition occurs again.

To change this registry parameter, run regedit.

Click on Start, Run and type regedit.

Click down the key path:
Double click on the value name
"Enable Journal Wrap Automatic Restore"
and update the value.

If the value name is not present you may add it with the New->DWORD
Value function under the Edit Menu item. Type the value name exactly as
shown above.

The correct responce as per a MS employee is

Here is an article that will explain what a journal wrap is:
292438 Troubleshooting Journal_Wrap Errors on Sysvol and DFS Replica Sets

The main thing here is to find out why this machine wound up in journal
wrap state.

To fix the journal wrap, you may have to perform a D2 (non authoratative

1. Click "Start", and then click "Run".

2. In the "Open" box, type "cmd" (without the quotation marks) and then
press ENTER.

3. In the "Command" box, type "net stop ntfrs" (without the quotation

4. Click "Start", and then click "Run".

5. In the "Open" box, type "regedit" (without the quotation marks) and then
press ENTER.

6. Locate the following subkey in the registry:

/Restore\Process at Startup

7. In the right pane, double-click "BurFlags".

8. In the "Edit DWORD Value" dialog box, type "D2" (without the quotation
marks) and then click "OK".

9. Quit Registry Editor, and then switch to the "Command" box.

10. In the "Command" box, type "net start ntfrs" (without the quotation

11. Quit the "Command" box.

When the FRS service restarts, the following actions occur:

- The value for BurFlags registry key returns to 0.

- Files in the reinitialized FRS folders are moved to a

- The FRS database is rebuilt.

- The member performs an initial join of the replica set from an upstream
partner or from the computer that is specified in the Replica Set Parent
registry key if a parent has been specified for SYSVOL replica sets.

- The reinitialized computer performs a full replication of the affected
replica sets when the relevant replication schedule begins.

Thank You.


This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Frozen Bubble - Java port

Frozen Bubble - Java port
This post is purely for selfish reasons, my daughter loves this game :)

Single Instance Storage in Microsoft Windows Storage Server 2003 R2

Download details: Single Instance Storage in Microsoft Windows Storage Server 2003 R2: "

A Solution for Managing Duplicate Files
Discover how Microsoft deployed the Single Instance Storage (SIS) feature of Microsoft Windows Storage Server 2003 R2 to automatically identify and manage duplicate files to reduce storage needs. SIS has allowed Microsoft IT to reduce storage by 25 to 40 percent, depending upon the type of content stored, across more than 200 servers."

why o' why such big buttons on my blog

Does anybody know why sometimes the editing panel of my blog has HUGE 'edit' buttons like below??

Friday, May 19, 2006

Database Programming and Design

From the site.......

Database Programming and Design: "
These hints--many of them previously unpublished--can help you avoid the plague of poorly written SQL statements"

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Windows 2000(3): Slow sync of profile when any user logs off.

From and napoleon41
Windows 2000: Slow sync of profile when any user logs off.: "
Do you use offline files? This is most likely what is causing SO much time logging off as it makes a copy of the user's document folder on the server locally. If your documents are large . . . well . . . not only can it take a great deal of time, but it can also completely fill the hard drive. If you are not wanting to use them (and you probably shouldn't for the reason I stated above), you should turn them off.

The settings for this are under you domain policy, both USER and COMPUTER policies, Administrative Template--Network--Offline Folders. Set all of the applicable setting to disable this feature.

You should/can open the hard drive (with my computer or explorer) and browse to the share on your server. Again . . . do this from the server. Right-Click the shared folder and go to properties-->Sharing tab-->Caching button--> and set the share to 'files or programs from the share will not be available offline'"

Batch file that truncates the username

CD %USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\...
copy \\xxxxxxxx\xxxxxxxxxxxx\%username:~0,8%.csv test.TXT

CSV file editor, unicode compatible on Windows XP NT 2000

CSV file editor, unicode compatible on Windows XP NT 2000

An excellent CSV editor

Mozilla Password Viewing

Mozilla Password Viewing

I have been looking for this for months, Thanks Ed.

Noteworthy Software companies

RJL Software, Inc. - Unique Software Solutions for Today's Changing Market
Sunbelt Software - Antispyware, Antispam, Security Software

I dont think I have the money for a Lexus LS-460

>TRG Proclaims Lexus LS-460 Most Techie Car - Lifestyle News - Digital Trends
I dont have the money for it but who knows :)

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | 'Big brother' informs baby talk

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | 'Big brother' informs baby talk

IBM Claims Tape Storage Breakthrough - Yahoo! News

IBM Claims Tape Storage Breakthrough - Yahoo! News

From the article
This denisty means that a standard tape cartridge will be able to hold some eight trillion bytes of uncompressed data, equivalent to the amount of text from eight million books.

You would think that by now we would stop the silly compareson to books, nobody i know thinks in those terms anyway!

Monday, April 03, 2006

Check out this uniqie bug from Microsoft

I am haveing a hard time digesting this one but the solution to this problem is....


To work around this problem, add or delete files on your computer so that the free disk space is not a multiple of 4-gigabytes.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Link: Living Without Technology

Lance Ulanoff of PC magazine is heading out for four weeks in the rough. He plans to spend four weeks completely tech free. However like many before him I think he will realize that we have reached a point of no return; Tech is here to stay.

At the urging of my editor-in-chief, Jim Louderback, and Vicki Jacobson, the executive editor who regularly edits this column, I'm going wild—literally. Beginning today at 5 p.m. (it's around 3:30 as I write this), I will leave all technology behind and head north to spend four weeks in a remote cabin in upstate New York.
Here is the kicker, this is all a ploy to observe him via web cam. Now that sounds like fun. See this link for pictures (scroll to the bottom)