Tuesday, 28 December 2004

PFDavAdmin and Exchange Mixed Environments

I've had a large number of problems with mixed 5.5/200x environments and public folder replication.  It seems sometimes that the public folder permissions do not synch correctly.  This tool has helped me enormously.  You can find a link to it here:

http://hellomate.typepad.com/exchange/2003/10/the_pfdavadmin_.html

Friday, 17 December 2004

DNSer Configuration

I use DNSer to update my Dynamic IP address as I found that the modified firmware in my Linux based LinkSys router wasn't updating it regularly enough.  Here's my example DNSerSvc.ini file:

[Source]
Interval=600
URL=http://checkip.dyndns.org
User=test
Pass=test
Proxy=
ProxyPort=
Prefix=IP Address:
Count=1
Log=1

[Srv1]
URL=http://members.dyndns.org/nic/update?hostname=yourhostname.homedns.org&system=dyndns&myip=%s
User=yourusername
Pass=yourpasswordProxy=
ProxyPort=
MinInterval=600
MaxInterval=2160000
StatusOK=good
StatusOK1=nochg
StatusOK2=abuse

Replace the bits in red to get it working for you.

I use this with http://www.dyndns.org and DNSer can be found here:
http://www.access.si/DNSer/DNSer.htm

Wednesday, 15 December 2004

LCID or Codepage?

I was demoing how to change the displayname format in Windows 2003 AD when the question came up about what the code 0x409 meant.  It's the LCID for US English.  Here's a list of LCID numbers used in Windows XP - It shouldn't be that different in Windows Server 2003.

http://www.microsoft.com/globaldev/nlsweb/

Tuesday, 14 December 2004

99.99% Exchange Uptime at Microsoft

An interesting article on how Microsoft achieve 99.99% Exchange uptime on 7 node 2003 clusters.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=a8cf167d-e23c-4a14-86cb-02d19ee3b8fe&displaylang=en
or click here.

How to upgrade an Exchange 2000 Cluster

Found a great article on how to upgrade an Exchange 2000/Windows 2000 cluster to Exchange 2003/Windows 2003.

http://blogs.msdn.com/exchange/archive/2004/05/07/127968.aspx

Sunday, 12 December 2004

How to set Linux Proxy Settings

Many programs support the use of an environment variable, so setting this in '/.profile' for example can make programs work:
export http_proxy=http://192.168.0.2:8080

KDE has an option in the Control Centre to configure it:
Control Centre > Internet & Network > Proxy

Gnome uses the gconftool-2 command line for proxy settings:
gconftool-2 -s /system/http_proxy/use_http_proxy -t bool true
gconftool-2 -s /system/http_proxy/host -t string "192.168.0.2"
gconftool-2 -s /system/http_proxy/port -t int 8080

Monday, 6 December 2004

DTC and Exchange 200x Clusters

Found an interesting article here on why Exchange Clusters require a DTC (Distributed Transaction Coordinator).

Monday, 29 November 2004

Showing Security Page in Exchange 2000

To show the security page in Exchange 2000 admin create the following registry key:

HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Exchange\ExAdmin
DWord: ShowSecurityPage: 0x00000001

Sunday, 28 November 2004

Felixstowe Broadband TV

Have you seen Felixstowe TV?  It's a broadband TV station for the local community that should be supported.

Halflife2 Blue Gravitygun

Completed this game last night and really loved the new gravity gun.  I won't say much about it as I don't want to spoil the game for anyone but if you've finsihed and want to make this appear earlier in the game here's how:

Enable the console:
Options > Keyboard > Advanced > Enable Developer console

Press the tilde key (usually under escape key) and enter the following:
sv_cheats 1
map d3_citadel_04
*wait for it to load*
changelevel d1_trainstation_01
*wait for load*
give weapon_physcannon

You might want to change the d1_trainstation_01 map to something you want.  Use the "maps" command for a list.

Thanks to "Strider" over at alt.games.halflife...

Saturday, 27 November 2004

Administering IIS 6.0 From Windows XP

I didn't realize that you couldn't remotely administer IIS 6.0 from Windows XP.  I have PWS installed on Windows XP which is IIS 5.1.  There is a download here that will let you administer IIS 6.0 from Windows XP.

Thursday, 25 November 2004

Community Server Beta1 - Part Deux

I mentioned Comunity Server Beta 1 here.
I've got it setup and working here.
Remember, it's only beta, but tell me what you think!

Monday, 22 November 2004

Community Server Beta1

The product that replaces .Text (what this blog is running in) is out.  You can find more details here.

ieSpell

Just a quick word about this nice gadget.  I make great use of spell checkers where ever I go but notice that many websites do not offer any spell checking for submitted forms.  If you click on the spell checker in .Text it suggests that you install ieSpell.

Well worth it in my opinion as it's free for non-commercial use.

Sunday, 21 November 2004

WUS Beta 2

I tried installing WUS Beta 2 today but found I couldn't install it into an existing MSDE instance.  I went ahead and installed it into a new WMSDE instance and then used DbaMgr2K to backup and restore the SUSDB to the existing MSDE instance.

I then edited the registry to point at the new DB by editing the key:
HKLM\Software\Microsoft\WindowsUpdateService\Server\Setup\SQLServerName

It seems to be working!
(Image lost due to Blog move)

Friday, 29 October 2004

Filtering Active GPO settings

I found out that the Microsoft Group Policy Editor can be configured to show only group policy settings that have actual settings in them rather than a mass of "configured".

You can only do this for Administrative Templates but just right click on the right hand side and select this option.

Stuck in Dublin

I've just remembered why I hate flying so much.  Well, not the flying, the boring "stuck in airport" bit.  I was a tad over optimistic with the material I could fill a 3 day "workshop" course for so ended up finishing an hour and a half early.  The meant I got to Dublin airport at 16:30 for a 20:00 flight only to find it was delayed till 21:00.

Sigh.

Tuesday, 12 October 2004

Windows Disk Repair Tool

Had a bit of disaster at work - Volume (not backed up) decided to lose it's volume information.  Found a reasonably priced disk recovery tool:

R-Studio NTFS

It's a little slow (we're talking about a 250GB volume mind you) but quite competitively priced at $49.99.  You can find a demo here.  It handles FAT, NTFS (Basic and Dynamic volumes) and Ext2FS (Linux).

Monday, 11 October 2004

Sunday, 3 October 2004

ACPI Throttling on Inspiron 5100

As the Dell Insprion 5100 has a standard desktop P4 processor it doesn't support power management but I am experimenting with ACPI throttling to extend battery power life/reduce temperature.  Here's the output from x86info:

wendy:~ # x86info
x86info v1.10.  Dave Jones 2001, 2002
Feedback to <davej@suse.de>.
Found 1 CPU
Family: 15 Model: 2 Stepping: 7 Type: 0 [Pentium 4 (Northwood) [C1] Original OEM]
Processor name string:               Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.66GHz


You can prove this yourself by the following:

wendy:~ # cat /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/info
processor id:            0
acpi id:                 0
bus mastering control:   yes
power management:        no
throttling control:      yes
limit interface:         yes

You notice the power management: no in the above output No CPU power management Im afraid.  This is further proven because the performance file is missing:

wendy:~ # cat /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/performance
cat: /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/performance: No such file or directory

Also there is only one powerstate supported in the power file:

wendy:~ # cat /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/power
active state:            C1
default state:           C1
bus master activity:     00000000
states:
   *C1:                  promotion[--] demotion[--] latency[000] usage[00000000]
    C2:                 
    C3:                 

However, going back to the output from /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/info youll notice that throttling is supported.  This is also proven by the output of /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/throttling:

wendy:~ # cat /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/throttling
state count:             8
active state:            T0
states:
   *T0:                  00%
    T1:                  12%
    T2:                  25%
    T3:                  37%
    T4:                  50%
    T5:                  62%
    T6:                  75%
    T7:                  87%

Notice the * before T0.  This indicates that there is 00% throttle on the processor, i.e. its running at 100%.  If we change this to anything between T1-T7 we can reduce the processor from running quite so fast:

T0         100%    2.66GHz
T1         88%      2.34GHz
T2         75%      2GHz
T3         63%      1.68GHz
T4         50%      1.33GHz
T5         38%      1.01GHz
T6         25%      665MHz
T7         13%      346MHz

Ive tested this by running xscreensaver and observing a visible slowdown.  I have not done any testing on thermal or battery effects Let me know if you do!

wendy:~ # cat /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/throttling
state count:             8
active state:            T0
states:
   *T0:                  00%
    T1:                  12%
    T2:                  25%
    T3:                  37%
    T4:                  50%
    T5:                  62%
    T6:                  75%
    T7:                  87%
wendy:~ # echo -n 4 > /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/throttling
wendy:~ # cat /proc/acpi/processor/CPU0/throttling
state count:             8
active state:            T4
states:
    T0:                  00%
    T1:                  12%
    T2:                  25%
    T3:                  37%
   *T4:                  50%
    T5:                  62%
    T6:                  75%
    T7:                  87%

Here's a good website that describes the ACPI interface:
http://acpi.sourceforge.net/documentation/processor.html

Saturday, 25 September 2004

New Colchester ntl: proxies

Had some problems with ntl: proxies in Colchester today. Turns out that ntl: have added two more proxies and changed the host names. Hostnames are now:

colc-cache-1.server.ntli.net
colc-cache-2.server.ntli.net
colc-cache-3.server.ntli.net
colc-cache-4.server.ntli.net
colc-cache-5.server.ntli.net
colc-cache-6.server.ntli.net

Grouper not working through my Squid proxy

I've been playing with a new P2P application at www.grouper.com but had problems feeding it through my local squid proxy.  Turned out not to be a problem with my local proxy but rather my ISP proxy.  I configured Squid to send requests directly to Grouper by adding the following to squid.conf:

#Grouper to go direct
acl grouper dstdomain .grouper.com
always_direct allow grouper

Sunday, 19 September 2004

Great replacement for Enterprise SQL Manager

As you may be aware, MSDE comes with bugger all management tools.  I've used  SQL Web Data Administrator and MSDE.Biz Query in the past but found them to be limited.

DbaMgr2k is a fantastic replacement that allows you to do everyhting that Enterprise SQL Admin does.  I can backup, compact, repair and even automate tasks with MSDE with this great tool!

SQL Statement to purge logs over 7 days old

I searched for sometime to find this one.  Needed to clear some IIS HTTP and Exchange 2003 SQL logs.  Finally found this SQL statement that would do it:

DELETE FROM inetlog
WHERE LogTime < dateadd (day, -7, getdate() )

XP SP2 SQL ODBC Problem

I couldn't get my XP SP2 box to connect to an MSDE instance after applying SP2 despite the System DSNs being setup and tested correctly before the installation of XP SP2.  Found that I had to go into the DSN and click "uses dynamic port" under client options and then change it back to a fixed TCP 1433 port.

Monday, 30 August 2004

XP SP2 Coaster Update

Drat - Nothing to do with software/hardware at all - It was the media - Steer clear of Datawrite Red (v2) 4x DVD-R!

XP SP2 and DVD-R Coasters

Had an enormous amount of problems with my normally very reliable Pioneer DVR-106 producing coasters. It was writing CD-R ok but not DVD-R.

I upgraded the firmware to region free v1.08 from here and I disabled the IMAPI service.  This allowed the drive to write DVD-R again but it was a lot slower.

I found that the drive had switched to PIO mode so I hunted round to try and find how to force it back to DMA and found this.  Also found a hotfix what will prevent the drive slipping into PIO so easily again here.

Sunday, 29 August 2004

"The following entry in the [strings] section is too long and has been truncated"

I was having some problems when editing a group policy created from an XP SP2 machine on a non XP SP2 machine. The Group Policy Management Console (GPMC)was complaining about text being to long in the [strings] section of the administrative template.Turns out this is a known problem with hot fixes available in MS KB Article 842933.

2000 (Post SP3)Fix

XP (Pre SP2) Fix - Apply SP2

2003 (Pre SP1)Fix

Wednesday, 18 August 2004

Linux integration with Windows AD

I've managed to get my Linux workstation talking to my 2003 AD DC and Exchange server.

Here's the login screen:
(Lost due to Blog move)

Here's the Evolution client talking to Exchange:
(Lost due to Blog move)

Tuesday, 17 August 2004

Black projects and UFO's?

Had a bit of a strange conversation with an ex-aerospace employee today after I had mentioned my interest in the Rendlesham incident of 1980.  They were behaving very strangely but strongly suggested I examine Nick Cook's book "The Hunt for Zero Point".

I've had a quick look at the web and the book seems to cover captured Nazi anti-grav technology.  I think I've seen the mentioned somewhere as Aurora and connected to the "Black Triangles".

Interesting and requires further research although my contact suggests I don't follow it up!

No default route on wireless Suse 9.1

I can remember a problem with Suse 9.1 and there being no default route when using a wireless card.  I remember editing /etc/sysconfig/network/ifcfg-wlan0 to contain:

DHCLIENT_SET_DEFAULT_ROUTE='yes'
DHCLIENT_MODIFY_RESOLV_CONF='yes'

netstat -rn then shows a default route.

Saturday, 7 August 2004

Removing the X Windows Display size error on Suse 9.1 and Dell Inspiron 5100

Everytime I logged into KDE X windows presented me with a problem saying that the display had not reported it's size properly.  I measuered the display with a tape measure, (305mm*230mm) and entered these manualy into SAX2 after entering the display type as a Dell 1024x Laptop Display.

Supporting the Inspiron 5100 keyboard volume keys in Linux

I wanted to get the volume keys from the Inspiron keyboard working in Suse 9.1.

I had to do three things to get this working:

1. Control Centre > Regional & Accessibility > Keyboard Model > Laptop/Notebook > Dell Inspiron 8xxx

2.  Replace the volume mixer with KAMix instead of the default (forgot what that was)

3. Assign the volume up and down keys to the volume control in KAMix by:
KAMIX > Settings > Configure shortcuts

I did try to setup a DCOP server setting to the original mixer but could not get this to work.

Wireless network losing connection after suspend

I found that I had to issue a command to get network connectivity back after suspending my Suse 9.1 to disk:
/etc/init.d.network restart

By editing the file /etc/sysconfig/powersave/common I've managed to get the network to restart when coming out of suspend:
POWERSAVE_SUSPEND_RESTART_SERVICES="hotplug network"

Problem with Linux mounting Windows Server 2003 Shares

I had some difficulty making my Linux box mount shares from a Windows 2003 Server share as it was giving me an error message.

The command I was trying to use was:
mount -t smbfs -o user=username //server/share /mnt

This caused an error of:
cli_negprot: SMB signing is mandatory and we have disabled it.
15137: protocol negotiation failed
SMB connection failed


The command I got to work was:
mount -t cifs -o user=username //server/share /mnt

Burfora Visit to Rendlesham Forest

Bufora (British UFO Research Association) are holding a day trip to Rendlesham Forest in the company of Larry Warren next weekend.  I don't belong to Bufora but it might be intereting to observe the man who claims to have been present in 1980 first hand.  I won't be able to read his book "Left at East Gate" before I meet him but the reviews seem to indicate he is a crank.  Still, I'll keep an open mind until I meet him!  Details on the visit are here:
http://www.bufora.org.uk (Click "Events")

XP SP2 Release

XP SP2 has been released on MSDN Universal - I've downloaded it and am now installing it on my laptop.
Interestingly, the default install backs up your files.  I seem to remember being given a choice about this on previous service packs.
It'll be interesting to see what breaks (if anything).

Wednesday, 4 August 2004

Suse 9.1 supports suspend to disk

My laptop running Suse 9.1 supports suspend to disk although it does not support standby.  Suse 9.1 does not allow this to work out of the box so you have to edit /etc/powersaved.conf and change this line:
POWERSAVED_DISABLE_USER_SUSPEND=no

I have yet to get the power button to suspend the machine though you can rightclick the plug icon in the panel to suspend or suspend from the command line:
powersave --suspend

Suse 9.1 pauses whilst booting to wait for network devices

My laptop was exhibiting a rather annoying pause when booting.  It was complaining about mandatory devices eth0 and wlan0 not being up.
 
To stop this edit /etc/sysconfig/network/config and edit a line to read:
  MANDATORY_DEVICES="lo"'

It no no longer complains.

Inspiron 5100 Winmodem setup

Just realised that my winmodem was not setup. Here is how I did it:

1.  Installed Smartlink Softmodem utilities and userspace driver
rpm -Uvh smartlink-softmodem-2.9.6-79

2. Edited configuration file to set Country
vi /etc/sysconfig/slmodemd
set 'SLMODEMD_COUNTRY=UK'

3.  Configured modem driver to load automaticially
vi /etc/modprobe.conf.local
Add 'alias slamr0 slamr'

4. Load the driver manually first time around
modprobe slamr

5. Start the userspace softmodem driver
/etc/init.d/sslmodemd start

6. Verify it's running
/etc/init.d/sslmodemd status

7. Link the device to /dev/modem to test with WVDial
ln -s /dev/ttySL0 /dev/modem

8. Test it
wvdial

9. Configure an ISP connection
yast > Network Devices > Modem

10. Reboot and make sure it all still works

Your milage may vary as there have been many types of Softmodems put into Inspiron notebooks.  The 'lspci' output of my modem was:
0000:00:1f.6 Modem: Intel Corp. 82801DB AC'97 Modem Controller (rev 02)

Tuesday, 3 August 2004

Installing the i8k Kernel module at boot in Suse 9.1

I've been trying to get the i8k kernel module to install automatically on my Dell Inspiron 5100 for a while. Managed it at last! What I had to do was:
1. Create /etc/modprobe.d/i8k containing line "options i8k force=1"
2. Edit /etc/sysconfig/kernel and edit line to read "MODULES_LOADED_ON_BOOT=i8k"
Sweet!

I've also installed i8kutils.1.21-1.rpm sp that I can manually control the fan.
"i8kmon" is a little graphical tool to manage the fan
"i8kfan -1 1" Switches the fan to medium speed
"i8kfan -1 2" Swuches the fan to high speed
"cat /proc/i8k" Allows me to read the temperature
Output looks like "1.0 A29 J9F0V0J 50 -22 1 -22 92430 -1 2"
50 is the temperature

First SPF Pass

Saw my first SPF pass from a non-spam organisation today.  Made an order on amazon.co.uk and got this in my event log - Looks like SPF is beginning to spread!

WRT54G DynDns Fix

I think I've fixed the problem with my DynDns name expiring.  I enabled telnet on my WRT54G and then telneted in and used "vi" to create /etc/cron.d/dyndns containing:

3 4 5 * * root /usr/sbin/ez-ipupdate --service-type=dyndns --user=username:password --host=hostname.homedns.org  --interface=eth1

This should mean that the DynDns name will be updated at 04:03 on the 5th of each month.

I decided to update only once per month as the DynDns terms and conditions state only every 28-35 days.  We'll see if it works...

(Please replace bold italic text with your own actual values!)

Linksys WRT54G Firmware

For some time now I've been running "hacked" firmware on my Linksys WRT54G wireless broad band router.  The hacked firmware has many advantages such as increased power output, support for VPN and much enhanced port forwarding.  The one thing that was missing was being able to update my dyndns name if the ip address did not change for 35 days.  You can get the firmware from here:

https://sourceforge.net/projects/wifi-box/

Thursday, 29 July 2004

Free SPF Filter for Microsoft Exchange

Found a cool filter for Exchange that allows SPF filtering.  This filter will become part of GFI mail essentials but at the moment is freeware!

http://www.michaelbrumm.com/smtpspffilter.html

It filters incoming mail and also tags the header.

Here's an eventlog picture:
(Oops - I lost it when I moved my blog - Sorry!)

Here's a header entry:
Received-SPF: none (chef.thefoleyhouse.ad: 212.87.86.80 is neither permitted nor denied by domain of listserve.novatech.co.uk) client-ip=212.87.86.80; envelope-from=bounce-eweekly_personalised-1486325@listserve.novatech.co.uk; helo=port-80.novatech.sc.newnet.co.uk;

SPF Testing

This is a good site to test your SPF records to see if they are correct:

http://www.dnsstuff.com/pages/spf.htm

SPF

Had a play with SPF (Sender Policy Framework) today. Enabled outbound SPF by creting the following DNS record for my domain (thefoleyhouse.co.uk) at http://www.freeparking.co.uk.

TXT "thefoleyhouse.co.uk" "v=spf1 a:smtp.ntlworld.com a:cartman.homedns.org mx -all"

This means that for "thefoleyhouse.co.uk" only smtp.ntlworld.com (my ISP relay server), cartman.homedns.org (my exchange box) and and servers marked in my mx records are allowed to send mail from my domain.

This is of course only enforced by receiving smtp servers that also use SPF. Now if only I could get plus.net to create this for my work domain we would be seeing a reduction in domain spoofing.

Wednesday, 28 July 2004

v5 Windows Update

Had a play with the new V5 windows update site which is being used to distribute Windows XP SP2 RC (amongst others).  It will only accept valid product keys so if you've used a pirate key or a self generated key then you're out of luck!

http://v5.windowsupdate.microsoft.com

Change Windows XP Product Key

Here's a neat script to change the Windows XP VLK Product key on an SP1 machine.

Save it as VLKeySP1.vbs and run it as "cscript VLKeySP1.vbs enter-your-new-product-key-here"

'
' WMI Script - ChangeVLKey.vbs
'
' This script changes the product key on the computer
'
'***************************************************************************
ON ERROR RESUME NEXT
if Wscript.arguments.count<1 then
   Wscript.echo "Script can't run without VolumeProductKey argument"
   Wscript.echo "Correct usage: Cscript ChangeVLKey.vbs ABCDE-FGHIJ-KLMNO-PRSTU-WYQZX"
   Wscript.quit
end if
Dim VOL_PROD_KEY
VOL_PROD_KEY = Wscript.arguments.Item(0)
VOL_PROD_KEY = Replace(VOL_PROD_KEY,"-","") 'remove hyphens if any
for each Obj in GetObject("winmgmts:{impersonationLevel=impersonate}").InstancesOf ("win32_WindowsProductActivation")
   result = Obj.SetProductKey (VOL_PROD_KEY)
   if err <> 0 then
      WScript.Echo Err.Description, "0x" & Hex(Err.Number)
      Err.Clear
   end if
Next

Office 2003 SP1 Available

It's up for download at:
http://office.microsoft.com/OfficeUpdate/default.aspx
Also SP1 for Onenote and an updated Spam filter for Outlook are there.

Tuesday, 27 July 2004

A few problems

Time is wrong (despite changing time settings in web.config) and I need to edit the descriptions...
Time to edit web.config.
It wasn't web.config - It was in the admin/options pages.
Title, my display name and time should now be correct.

Blog off the ground!

I've managed to configure my server using the .text blog application from http://www.gotdotnet.com/Community/Workspaces/workspace.aspx?id=e99fccb3-1a8c-42b5-90ee-348f6b77c407. Installation was pretty sweet except I needed to modify the example connection strings. They needed to have "Trusted_Connection=true" added.

Because I'm only running a single blog I had to make sure that the application name used in DotTextHelper was null, i.e. "" instead of MyBlog.

Final problem was that the new virtual directory did not have an aspnet_client. I just created a virtual directory pointing to wwwroot\aspnet_client.

I'm going to try linking this to Newsgator later.