Software

  • Update your Sky Router to work with any ISP March 28, 2012 misterjaytee

    So your usual (non-Sky) router develops a fault and all you’ve got lying around is that old Sky Router left over from when you decided to give Sky the chop and go get a better service (or whatever other reason you had for leaving Sky).

    Problem is that the Sky Router does not allow you to enter your new ISP’s details (e.g. the DSL username and password).

    If your Sky Router is the Sagem F@ST 2504, then you may be in luck.

    First up, make sure you can login to the router (try going to http://192.168.0.1 first. When prompted for username and password, enter:
    username: admin
    password: sky

    If this works, then you can at least go onto perform the next steps…

    Before proceeding, there are a few things to consider:

    1. Your contract with Sky may mean that what you are about to do is in breach of contract – make sure you know what the terms are before continuing (e.g. some contracts state that they can ask for the Router back up to 6 months after the contract ends)
    2. Flashing the Router with new firmware is a risk – you could brick the router completely. But then again, if it’s just an old Router gathering dust, then maybe it’s not an issue
    3. No-one else is liable for anything that goes wrong with this process except for you – it worked for me, and has worked for many others, but equally it’s tough luck if it goes wrong

    Onto business:

    Go and download the following files:

    F2404_3_18_1a4_flash_image_NONE.rar

    F2404_3_24a4_fs_kernel_NONE.zip

    F2404_3_33_8a4_fs_kernel_NONE.zip

    Uncompress all the files – try 7-zip if you don’t have a decent zip/unzip tool.

    Now back to the Router – select the option “Router Upgrade” and choose the F2404_3_18_1a4_flash_image_NONE.w file (that you just extracted). Click “Upload”. On completion, the router will have changed its IP address to 192.168.1.1, so you need to change your IP settings (hint, pick an address such as 192.168.1.2), then browse to http://192.168.1.1.

    You’ll now see an “Update Software” page. Before you upload the software, look at the bottom of your Router and you should see a MAC Address. Enter this address in the box that says “MAC Base Address”, then click “Save/Apply”.

    Refresh the web page to make sure you can still connect to the Router. Now on the “Update Software” page, click Browse and choose the file F2404_3_24a4_fs_kernel_NONE that you extracted earlier. Click “Update Software”.

    Wait a few minutes and you should find that the Router now has updated firmware – if you get a red/pink page that looks like an error page, then refresh your Browser (F5 or Ctrl/F5) – if you don’t get a login prompt, then close you rBrowser and fire up the page again.

    When prompted for  a username enter:
    username: admin
    password: admin

    You’ll now have an updated router that is much more configurable than it was before. Next steps:

    1. Change the admin password (Management/Access Control/Passwords)
    2. Update to the later firmware (Management/Update Software and choose the file F2404_3_33_8a4_fs_kernel_NONE.DAT)
    3. Configure the DSL and Wireless Settings – don’t forget in the UK, DSL settings are VPI=0, VCI=38. If in doubt also choose UBR and PPPoA for your WAN/DSL settings.

    This post is a collection of work from other people with my own thoughts thrown in.

    Credits:
    Shonk @ SkyUser Forum (this post – http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/sky-router/45444-f-st-2504-generic-firmware-needed-2.html)
    IsItMe @ SkyUser Forum (this post – http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/asking-help/20137-sagem-f-st-2504-a-3.html#post267322)

     

  • Issue accessing Samba when using Active Directory March 28, 2012 misterjaytee

    A little help out there for anyone else that may have come across this problem…

    When accessing a remote Samba share (e.g. on a non-trusted Domain), the Samba file server rejects your credentials, even though you know they are correct. When you look in the Samba error log, you see a message like this:

    [2012/03/27 10:01:22, 0] lib/util_sock.c:read_data(534)
    read_data: read failure for 4 bytes to client 192.168.10.106. Error = Connection reset by peer

    There’s a couple of potential issues. First off, try adding the following to your smb.conf file (assuming you’re using Samba v3 or above):

    client ntlmv2 auth = yes

    If this doesn’t work, check to see what security you’re using. If you’re using ADS for security (Windows Active Directory), you’ll see the following line in smb.conf:

    security = ADS

    In my case I was trying to access a Samba source on a remote, non-trusted Domain, and when entering login details I entered the username in the Windows NT format e.g. COMPANY-DOMAIN\username.

    Even though the credentials were correct, the Samba server would reject the credentials and the Samba error log had the message as above.

    The fix for this is really easy, but hard to find on the Internet (hence why I’m posting this article) – enter your username in the LDAP/ADS format of username@domain.tld (e.g. fred.bloggs@company.local). The combination of both fixes in this post should help you gain access to that problematic Samba server.

  • Using Git repositories with Mercurial on Windows June 23, 2011 misterjaytee

    I’ve been using Mercurial as my source control for a few weeks now, but wanted to get some source code from GitHub. I’d rather not have to install the git client and server, and those clever people at GitHub have catered for this nicely with the Hg-Git mercurial plugin. Trouble is, for novices, the instructions aren’t very clear, so for those that stumble across this site from time to time, here’s the simple instructions to follow:

    The Pre-requisites are Python, TortoiseHG and Mercurial, which you will probably already have. Fortunately these are available in a single package TortoiseHg 2.0.5 with Mercurial 1.8.4 for Windows.

    Once you’ve installed and restarted Windows, these are the next steps:

    • Open a Command Prompt and run
      easy_install hg-git

      (this is a Python command in case you were wondering – it will run a python script and install Dulwich and hg-git)

    • Edit your .hgrc file
      notepad %userprofile%\.hgrc

      (if you don’t have a .hgrc file, you will be asked if you want to create one)

    • Enter the following lines into the file (If you already have a .hgrc file with an [extensions] line in, then obviously don’t repeat that line, put the other two lines below it)
      [extensions]
      hgext.bookmarks =
      hggit = C:\Python26\Lib\site-packages\hg_git-0.2.6-py2.6.egg\hggit

      (This is assuming that the Python installed is v2.6 and the hg-git extension is v0.2.6 – check the path to make sure you’ve specified it correctly)

    • To check it’s all working correctly, go to a Command Prompt and change to a directory where you wish to download source code to, and then try to download the source for hg-git:
      cd /d d:\Projects
      hg clone git://github.com/schacon/hg-git.git

    Hopefully you won’t see any errors and when you list the hg-git folder, you’ll find a bunch of files and folders with the source code in.

    Simple, eh?

    Hg-Git mercurial plugin

  • Useful resources – SQL Server Advisor & LostInTechnology December 22, 2010 misterjaytee

    It’s not often that I blog about other websites, but two that I’ve come across this week are worthy of mention.

    The most useful of which is Microsoft SQL Server Advisor – whilst browsing around trying to learn some new skills on SQL Server, I found this website which has so many useful scripts and advice on SQL Server. It’s a shame that it doesn’t appear to have had an update since June 2009, nevertheless it is a useful archive of information on Microsoft SQL Server.

    The second website of mention is LostInTechnology, which I came across by accident when looking for a decent Android App Manager. There’s a variety of tidbits which make useful reading, and the site is regularly updated with new articles. A shame about all the adverts though!

  • More lazy blogging December 20, 2010 misterjaytee

    After blogging about scribefire previously, I found that I didn’t use it, even though its use isn’t in doubt.

    You may ask why, and the answer is simple…I haven’t been using FireFox as my main browser for a few months now. Google Chrome has been my browser of choice even though the lack of adequate tab management annoys me.

    It won’t be so bad when FireFox 4 comes out, and I suspect that the new Panorama interface will drive me back.

    Meanwhile, whilst playing with some new apps on my Android phone, I’ve come across this very sweet WordPress App. Go to Android market and search for WordPress.

    More info at http://android.wordpress.org

  • Errors Updating WordPress September 11, 2010 misterjaytee

    It seems that many people out there are having problems automatically updating WordPress and they are getting the following error:

    Could not copy file.: /public_html/x/wp-admin/css/theme-editor.dev.css

    After trying several (probably all) of the suggestions for automatically upgrading from the WordPress Support Forums, I eventually had to resort to a manual upgrade – documented at Updating WordPress « WordPress Codex.

    As my host runs CPanel, I changed the way I did the upgrade slightly, so just in case there are others out there with the same predicament, here are the steps I followed:

    Before we start, read the Instructions on “Take a Backup” in the updating WordPress link above. If your upgrade goes wrong and you haven’t taken any backups, then the liability is all yours 🙂

    1. Download the upgrade file from WordPress (v3.0.1 file is here – http://wordpress.org/wordpress-3.0.1.zip)
    2. Open up the File Manager under CPanel and navigate to your WordPress folder (e.g. /public_html/mywebsite)
    3. Rename the wp_includes and wp_admin folders (e.g. to wp_includes-old, wp_admin-old)
    4. Navigate to the wp-content/upgrade folder
    5. Delete any folders here (there may be a remnant of the failed automatic upgrade called wordpress3-tmp or similar)
    6. Upload the file you just downloaded in step 1 (e.g. wordpress-3.0.1.zip)
    7. Right-click the file under CPanel’s File Manager and choose the option to Extract
    8. The Extract will have created a folder called “wordpress” – Navigate to this folder
    9. Now Select all the files (hint – in CPanel’s File Manager, there is a button called “Select All”)
    10. Copy (right-click and select Copy) the files to your WordPress folder (e.g. /public_html/mywebsite)
    11. Navigate to your WordPress folder (e.g. /public_html/mywebsite) – If you have a file called .maintenance, then delete it
    12. Login to your WordPress site’s Admin panel – if the upgrade has worked, then you will have a message that your WordPress has been upgraded and your database now needs to be upgraded – click the button and wait for WordPress to upgrade your database
    13. Check out your upgraded WordPress blog and make sure it’s all working
    14. When you’re happy it’s all working, delete the wp_includes_old and wp_admin_old folders
    15. As an additional step, you might want to delete the contents of the upgrade folder

    Voila! The work is done. And with any luck, next time you upgrade, you’ll be able to upgrade WordPress automatically.

    If you have this problem and you need to manually upgrade, then Good Luck!

  • Lazy Blogging? September 10, 2010 misterjaytee

    It’s been a while since I posted anything, mostly due to job hunting, partly due to apathy and the lack of much to write about.

    Having said that, I do come across interesting articles, software, etc from time to time and then go about using them – but I don’t ever find the time to share my experiences of them. Hopefully that’s where ScribeFire comes in – once installed and configured, it’s relatively easy to post about the pages you’re visiting.

    In fact it’s as simple as clicking a button, or pressing F8 and then typing away straight from your Browser (e.g. Firefox) without having to go to your Blog (e.g. WordPress), login to the admin panel, create a new post etc. Not that this is difficult to do, but removing 3-4 steps in the posting process might just remove some of the apathy towards blogging.

    Time will tell…

    ScribeFire: Fire up your blogging

  • Bullguard Antivirus on Windows x64 – Ouch! March 21, 2010 misterjaytee

    So my Kaspersky license was nearing its 2 year end, and although I had no issues apart from the high Renewal cost (loyalty doesn’t count any more!), it was time to look around again. After much searching, I decided that I’d try out Bullguard on my PC and Laptop – partly based on the fact that this is a native 64-bit program (many AV programs have a mixed 32-bit GUI and 64-bit engine), and partly based on the license costs.

    After an easy install and update process, I noticed that my Computer was a tad more sprightly than before, so a thumbs up straight away.

    Next day, all was going well until about 4.45 pm when I was browsing for a free UML plugin for VB Express, and up popped a warning from Bullguard telling me that it had blocked a file that had been infected by Trojan.FakeAlert.5. Being curious, I googled for this Virus and found nothing much that I hadn’t seen before when searching for Viruses, except that I didn’t have any of the symptoms of the virus itself (no virus files to be found, no spurious registry entries etc.). Another few alerts started to get me thinking this was a problem with Bullguard so I logged a support call (which they say will take 1 hour to respond).

    Within 30 minutes of googling, I found that the Bullguard forums were buzzing with a problem created by a bad update, and shortly afterwards a statement on the Bullguard website confirmed that it was their mistake.

    The problem is, Bullguard had quarantined many files in the aftermath and disabled the Laptop and caused several problems on my PC. Others on the Internet have also been unfortunate with many people worldwide (thousands or possibly tens of thousands) having been affected by this issue with reports of Windows reinstalls having to be done.

    Basically they issued an update yesterday afternoon, and from that point (until you download the next update which was published about an hour later), any 64-bit Windows PC will have reported nearly every .exe and.dll file as a virus – if you were one of the lucky ones, the file would then get quarantined; if you were unlucky, the file was deleted. Files included important system files and the anti-virus program itself (it’s quite bizarre having an Anti-Virus program reporting itself as having been infected by a Virus!).

    However, Bullguard users are not the only ones affected – it seems that the Virus signature files are provided by Bitdefender, and their users seem to have been hit much worse than the Bullguard users, with talks in the Bitdefender forums of taking Class Action Lawsuits etc. It might sound extreme, and unlikely to happen in the UK, but when an Anti-Virus program is supposed to be protecting you from malicious damage to you computer, and stopping programs deleting or infecting important files on your computer, it is unthinkable that your Anti-virus program would do exactly that.

    Ironically, I’ve been using Kaspersky for 2 years now and had no problems (slower than it could be, but not as slow as Norton, McAfee, Trend etc.), and I’d only had the program installed on trial for 1 day before the problems struck. When I agreed to use Bullguard on a trial basis, I expected the definition of “trial” to be a test or tryout, not an ordeal or burden. Some trial that’s turned out to be!

    I’ve left Bullguard on one of the computers in the hope that nothing like this occurs again, in the meantime I’ll be trying out other software (but not Bitdefender :)).

    If you’ve been affected by this issue, then checkout the advice on Bullguard’s status page – and good luck!

  • VB Express 2008, x64 and Database woes March 16, 2010 misterjaytee

    Just a quick post to hopefully save some poor soul the same pains I’ve gone through while looking into some problems with Visual Studio Express and database connectivity.

    Woe No. 1

    Having tried to connect to a SQL database (SQL Express) and finding various articles on the Internet about issues on 64-bit versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7, it seems that VS2008 Express (VB and C#) does not have the capability to connect to a SQL database (you can connect to a local MDF file apparently, but not to your SQL Server). So don’t go through uninstalling SQL Express and install the 32-bit version, then uninstall again and install the 64-bit version, then try various combinations of SQL connectivity configuration (TCP/IP, Named Pipes etc.). It won’t work!

    You can connect to SQL databases if you’re using Visual Web Express though (not that I wanted to yet!).

    Woe No. 2

    So, I tried connecting to an Access database instead – and put the old Northwind database somewhere accessible. After sorting out my data connection in Database Explorer (it’s called Server Explorer in non-Express versions), I previewed my data and the preview showed up all the rows in the relevant table – great start 🙂

    But…(you knew there was a but!)…when I ran my program the table didn’t return any rows at all, just an empty data grid.

    After hunting around on the Internet again, it seems that there is a connectivity issue because the Access drivers are 32-bit, but the default for compilation on a 64-bit system (you guessed it) is 64-bit. So naturally you just change the compilation to 64-bit in your Visual Studio project by going into the Project Properties and setting the Platform to 64-bit. That’s okay if you have the full Visual Studio, but it doesn’t work for VS Express.

    To be able to see the option in VS Express you need to go to Tools, Options, Project Solutions and check “Show advanced build configurations”. This will expose the necessary drop-down, but you won’t be able to select 64-bit – arghh! You then need to go to Build, Configuration Manager and in the Platform drop-down box for your project select “New” and select x86 from the options.

    An alternative “fix” is to close your VB Project, go to the project folder and edit the vbproj.user file in your favourite text editor (Notepad++ is my editor of choice), and add <PlatformTarget>x86</PlatformTarget> before the closing </PropertyGroup> tag.

    Finally, we come to:

    Woe No. 3

    Basically, I seemed to lose my project’s Form completely at one point (during form design, before I’d put any code behind it), not sure how I did it, but here’s what happens:

    You open your Project, and you have your form under Solution Explorer (e.g Form1.vb), but you can only see a code window for it and there are no Designer options!

    This happens because there is no code at all (maybe you made a mistake and deleted it) – but because there isn’t a Class definition for the form, you lose the option for the Designer (sounds like a bug to me). Anyway, to fix it add these lines to your Form1.vb code (or whatever your form is called) and you will get the “View Designer” option back:

    Public Class Form1

    End Class

    As the Meerkat says, “Simples!”.

    So there you go, if you must do things on the cheap (or you’re just starting out with .NET programming and using the Express Editions), you may find some teething pains. However, like me, you might find the experience teaches you a few things as well. And remember…Google is your friend 🙂

  • Tweetboard October 26, 2009 misterjaytee

    Very cool new gadget now installed on the site – it’s called Tweetboard.

    Currently only available to Alpha testers, it is very easy to setup (I just added a text widget to WordPress), and it works straight “out of the box”. From what I’ve seen so far, it works perfectly fine on Windows 7 with Firefox and Internet Explorer 8, and it’s also been working okay with Firefox on Ubuntu.

    Go on, give it a try…

Comments are closed