yoy.be "Why-o-Why"

Microsoft is too big! Time to split it up in pieces.

2019-04-26 22:41  splitms  actueel beurs computers  [permalink]

The Microsoft Corporation reached a valuation of $1·1012, this could mean the US dollar is losing its value and thus its international relevance, but more probably that the company is positively humungous. Just like the behemoths is has recently joined, it's a worldwide employer, does worldwide business and is sitting on a big pile of cash it's not quite clear even how it could spend it. So when things like this happens, voices speak up about splitting up in pieces. But how? I'm listing just a possible set of fraction lines here through the little I know of the enterprise and what I understand about it. Please feel free to differ, or revel at the level of insight of this outsider, whichever feels most appropriate.

Department: Hardware

Products: Surface, XBox, HoloLens, other peripherals (and what's left of Zune and Nokia)
Revenue: from selling devices

Operating system and out-of-the-box software would no longer be available from a source in-house, so they'll have to shop around like the rest of us, or (try to) go with freeware.

Department: Developer Tools

Products: Visual Studio, compilers.
Revenue: licensing

Do prices need to go up? Will this scare people away? Are the free community editions still possible? And what about Visual Studio Code? There's perhaps even a small chance of access to documentation turned into a payable service, but I hope it's clear that this most probably will scare away an important portion of the public. Anyway, this is where the true legacy of Microsoft lies, if you consider BASIC as one of early Microsoft's first successfull products, and the success of its compilers and platforms going hand in hand with the rise of Windows.

Department: Operating Systems

Products: Windows
Revenue: licensing

As I said before, Windows could do Coca-Cola and go open-source, and what people would be buying is the certified binaries to install, and — perhaps more importantly — a continuous stream of system updates refining (new) features and assuring better security. With an open-source Windows, one could go and try at it for oneself, carrying the full set of risks, and it's a big part of the equation if you're really sure that's what you want. Then again, it would open the playing field, and the few that could build up the substance to offer an alternative with a similar degree of dependability would at least get a fair chance. Don't forget, if this plays out and a few big ones compete like this, it keeps all of them on their tows, and typically will compete in innovative features and cooperate for collective security. Something that may regretfully be reverting in the field of web-browsers now that Microsoft too switched to a WebKit-derivative, and all we've got for technically true alternatives is Mozilla's offering.

Department: Productivity Software

Products: Office, Team System
Revenue: licensing

Microsoft has been accused before of having an unfair advantage from the people building Office sitting next door to the people building Windows, being able to open hidden undocumented features for exclusive use. To their credit, they have been able to disprove any such claim, and have opened up the documentation on both sides about how it's all done, and how anyone could do the same. Still, as separate corporate identities, this would truly open the market, and offer a chance of other players to form a collection of stake-holders to jointly push for required features and revisions the operating system should provide.

Department: Business Software

Products: SQL Server, BizTalk
Revenue: licensing

Much like with Office, the general public gains from having full transparency about how SQL Server embeds with the system. Unlike with Office, this hasn't been as much of a problem with SQL Server, perhaps because with advanced systems administration you naturally learn about the nooks and crannies of the system when it has to perform under load. Also with the port to Linux and other Unix-derivates complete, this is no longer an issue. What may be an issue in recent days — in my opinion — is the current pricing and how it may be employed to push people towards the cloud. I've heard from a number of instances in the field, that it's not working, and large projects are moving to PostgreSQL instead. Sometimes even also with a (partial) move to the cloud (and almost never Azure I noticed). But I could be wrong, and/or this could all be changing as cloud offerings are in continuous flux. But seperating this in to independent units would offer more operability and tranparency, I guess.

Department: Services

Products: Azure cloud
Revenue: cloud resource use billing

As with the hardware division, operation system and developer tools would no longer come from in-house, except perhaps the system modules and libraries used server-side specifically for running virtual payloads and managing the cloud services in use by the customers. But this also means that any services used and access to system internals provided by external providers, would be accessible to anyone else as well. Also as I've mentioned before, cloud offering is relatively new and in constant flux, and I expect an era of renewed interoperability between all kinds of cloud services of all providers. For now all we can do is frown upon vendor-lock-in very hard if we notice it, and only grudgingly accept if we really find no other viable alternative.

Department: Research

Products: ?
Revenue: ?

This is a hard one. If you split the research endeavour into a separate unit, it's not clear what you would expect of it. Research in hardware is important to advance the state of the art and develop new devices. Reasearch in development tools is important because of the constant influx of new developers learning to code and the quality of work we should be able to expect from them. Research in software is important because modern devices keep increasing performance and capabilities, and offers new options for human interaction that need to get developed. So each independent unit may need its specific research lab, but there's still a section of independent research done in the over-arching field of computer use, networking, man-machine psychology, how hardware and software could have less impact on the planet, etc. Where's the business model in this, I don't know, but if we have a peek over the fence, I guess the way ex-Google's X is managed by the Alphabet Corporation may serve as a nice example. Try new things here and there, and if anything sticks, spin it off, and house it with a different company in the group, or let it loose on the world on its own.

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Local variables don't cost nothing!

2019-03-08 22:45  nocostvar  coding computers delphi werk  [permalink]

O my god. I can't believe I have to keep explaining this. To a years-long colleague with some more years on the counter than me, the other day. He repeated a function call with the same arguments a few times in a few adjacent lines of code, with a guarantee in place that this will result the same value every time.

I asked him why. It couldn't be to have less typing: the extra var a:integer; would replace far much more code it took for the repeated function calls. It couldn't be performance: even if the function would just be getting a value from a memory location, the call and return, building a stack frame and tearing it down it again, would end up in a multiple of the instructions the processor needs to work through.

I don't know who launched the idea the compiler should be smart enough to pick things like this out — what I read about Rust and other modern languages, I know research is actively looking at things like that — but as we currently have it, our good old trusted compiler doesn't. What is does do, and typically really well if we work a little with it, is mapping local variables onto the available registers of the CPU. In the best case no memory whatsoever is allocated for local variables.

Even if in theory some local variables get a temporary address on the stack, modern CPU's have multiple levels of cache so that the values don't even reach your DRAM silicon before you're function call completes. We're supposed to keep all functions and methods as short as possible, but even if we don't, the compiler knows if a local variable is only used for a short section of the code. So in some cases it's even better to have an extra local variable instead of re-using a local variable somewhere up front and then later near the end of a larger block, and still not pay with any performance of memory consumption...

So when in doubt, take an extra local var. It's what they're there for. It helps the compiler do better analysis. It helps you, now and later. All I need to do now is name them a little better. I know I have the nasty habit of things like var a,b,c,d,e,f,g:integer; but I think I'm improving... Slowly...

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VPN problemen? rasphone

2019-02-03 21:51  rasphone  computers dagboek internet werk  [permalink]

Dit is er eentje om te onthouden. Ik had problemen met de VPN connectie naar het werk. Het is te zeggen, het werkte vlot en naar behoren op mijn vorige laptop. Ik koop me na x jaren eens een nieuwe laptop, neem de instellingen over, noppes. Waarom precies is me niet duidelijk aan de error. In de event log vind ik RasSstp die zegt dat het of een timeout of een certificaat-probleem is. Dus was ik al de certificate (stores! wist ik veel of het de computer of service of persoonlijke store is)  aan het uitpluizen voor een eventueel verschil. Ik had zelfs al netsh ras set tracing * enabled gevonden maar daar vond ik helemaal niets in terug... En dan kom ik plots toevallig langs deze (lap, vergeten de URL van waar ik het zag bij te houden):

C:\Users\%USERNAME%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Network\Connections\Pbk\rasphone.pbk

Blijkt daar niet alleen precies inderdaad een cruciaal verschilletje te zitten in één van de honderden parametertjes daar, blijkt ook dat je gewoon extra files in die folder kan zetten en ze verschijnen auto-magisch in het netwerk-menu onder het icoon op de taakbalk. En voila, probleem geflikskts.

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Open source is nice, but is the protocol also open (enough)?

2019-01-15 08:57  openproto  actueel beurs coding computers internet  [permalink]

Hacker Noon: Bitcoin’s Biggest Hack In History: 184.4 Billion Bitcoin from Thin Air; Satoshi Hard Forks, Saves Bitcoin

See, this is something I'm very very worried about: things like Bitcoin — big public successful open-source projects — have the appearance of being complete open and public, but the protocol isn't really.

When I was first looking into Bitcoin and learning what it is about, really, I'm quite sure this can only have originated out of a tightly connected bunch of people that were very serious about 'disconnecting' from anything vaguely institutional. Any structure set up by people to govern any kind of transactions between them, has the tendency to limit liberties of people, for the people taking part in the system and sometimes also for those that don't. So it's only natural that Bitcoin at its code is a peer-to-peer protocol.

But. How do people that value anonymity and independence from any system, even get to find each-other and communicate to build things together? Well, the internet of course. But perhaps more importantly — and also since long before the internet — cryptography. Encoding messages so that only the one with the (correct) key can decode and read the message, helps to reduce the cloak-and-dagger stuff to exchanging these keys, and enables to send messages in the open. To the uninitiated onlooker it looks like a meaningless block of code, and in a sense it's exactly that. Unless you what to do with it, and have the key — or would like to have it.

Another use of encoded messages is proving it's really you that originally encoded a message. It's what's behind the Merkle tree that the blockchain runs on. That way the entire trail of transactions is out there in the open, all signed with safely stored private keys. The reader can verify with the public keys, and in fact these verifications buzz around the network and are used to supervise the current state of the blockchain, building a consensus. Sometimes two groups disagree and the chain forks, but that's another story.

The protocol, or the agreement of how to put this into bits and bytes in network packets, can get quite complex. It needs to be really tight and dependable from the get-go, see the article I linked to above. You could write it all down and still have nothing that works, so what typically happens is you create a program that does it and test it to see how it behaves. In this case it's a peer-to-peer networking program so you distribute it among your peers.

But when things get serious, you really need the protocol written out at some point. If you try that and can't figure out any more what really happens, you're in trouble. The protocol could help other people to create programs that do the same, if they would want to. This was something the early internet was all about: people got together to talk about "How are we going to do things?" and then several people went out and did it. And could interoperate just fine. (Or worked out their differences. In the best case.) It typically resulted in clean and clear protocols with the essence up front and a clear path to some additional things.

The existence of the open-source software culture it another story altogether, but I'm very worried it is starting to erode the requirement for clean protocols more and more. If people think "if we can't find out how the protocol exactly works, we can just copy the source of the original client/server" nobody will take the time to guard how the protocol behaves in corner cases and inadvertently backdoors will get left open, ready for use by people with bad intent.

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Browsers with less and less UI...

2018-10-05 17:19  browserslessui  computers internet weblog  [permalink]

Here's a wicked idea: With browsers trying to have less and less UI, the line of death getting more and more important to help guard your safety, and some even contemplating seeing the address bar as a nuisance — who types a full URL there nowadays anyways? — what if there was a browser that always opens fully full screen. No need for F11. You still need a back and a refresh button, and something that gives access to all the rest like settings, stored page addresses, and if you really really need it, the address of the current page. But it is hidden from view most of the time, except when you make a certain gesture, like a small counter-clock-rotation. It should look different enough so it contrasts with the page, and should be different every time, so it isn't corruptable by any webpage. And even then should be obviously not part of the page.

And people need to find it intuitive and self-explanatory.

Oh never mind.

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This one day at work

2017-09-07 11:00  fromthetrenches  computers weblog werk  [permalink]

Here's another nice story 'from the trenches'. Packaging stations use a barcode scanner to scan the barcode on the items that need packaging. We were able to buy a batch of really good barcode scanners, second hand, but newer and better than those that we had. A notice came in from an operator: "with this new scanner, we get the wrong packaging material proposal." The software we wrote for the packaging stations, would check the database for the item which is the best suitable packaging material to package it in. It's a fairly complicated bit of logic that used the order and product details, linked to the warehouse stockkeeping and knows about the several exceptions required by postal services of the different destination countries.

So I checked the configuration of this station first. Always try to reproduce first: the problem could go away by itself, or exist 'between the user and the keyboard', or worse only happen intermittent depending on something yet unknown... Sure enough, product '30cm wide' would get a packaging proposal of the '40cm box' which is incorrect since it fits the '30cm box'. Strange. The station had the 'require operator packaging material choice confirmation' flag set to 1, so I checked with 0 and sure enough, it proposed the '30cm box' (with on-screen display, without operator confirm, just as the flag says)...

So into the code. Hauling the order-data and product-data from the live DB into the dev DB (I still thank the day I thought of this tool to reliably transport a single order between DB's). Opening the source-code for the packaging software, starting the debugger while processing the order, and... nothing. Nicely proposing the '30cm box' every time, with any permutation of the different flags (and there are a few, so a lot of combinations...)

Strange. Very strange. Going over things again and again, checking with other orders and other products, nothing. I declared the issue 'non-reproducable' an flagged it 'need more feedback', not really knowing of any would come from anywhere.

A short while later, a new notice from the same station: "since your last intervention, scanned codes concatenate". What, huh? I probably forgot to switch the 'require operator packaging material choice confirmation' back to 1, but how could that cause codes to concatenate? I went to have a look, and indeed, when a barcode is scanned (the device emulates keyboard signals for the digits and a press of 'Enter') the input-box would select-all, so the number is displayed, and would get overwritten by the next input. This station didn't. The caret was behind the numbers, and the next scan would indeed concatenate the next code into the input field.

Strange. Very strange. Into to the code first: there's a SelectAll call, but what could be wrong with that? And how to reproduce? What I did was write a small tool that displayed the exact incoming data from the keyboard, since it's apparently all about this scanner. Sure enough, the input was: a series of digits (those from the barcode), an 'Enter', and 'Arrow Down'. A-ha! These were second hand scanners, remember? God knows what these scanners were used for before, but if having the scanner send an extra 'arrow down' after each code, is the kludge it takes to solve some mystery problem in software out of your control, than that is what a fellow support engineer has to do... Got to have some sympathy for that. And the '40cm box' was indeed just below the '30cm box' in the list, so the arrow down would land in the packaging material selection dialog, causing the initial issue.

Download the manual for the scanners, scan the 'reset all suffixes to "CR"' configuration code, done.

(Update: got some nice comments on reddit)

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Idea: assembly that flags when to release virtual registers

2017-05-31 23:52  asmvrr  coding computers  [permalink]

I just had a fragment of an idea. I want to write it down, just to let it go for now as I've got other things to do, and to be sure I can pick it up later exactly where I left off.

First situating what it's about: I have been reading up on WebAssembly, and to my surprise the intermediate representation is stack based (just like Java's JVM and .Net's CIL). I'm not sure why because it feels to me this makes registry assigning when constructing the effective platform-dependent instructions harder, but I may be wrong. Finding out objectively is a project on it's own, but sits on the pile 'lots of work, little gain'.

I also went through the great set of MIT 6.004 lectures by Chris Terman which really gives you a good view of 'the other side' of real assembly since it's actually born out of designing these processing units built out of silicon circuits. It prompted me to make this play thing, but again pushing that through with a real binary encoding of the instructions made it a 'lots of work, little gain' project, and I really don't have access to any kind of community that routinely handles circuit design, so it stalled there.

Before that, I read something about hyper-threading, and what it's really about. It turns out modern CPU cores actually handle two streams of incoming instructions, have a set of instruction decoding logic for each stream (and perhaps branch prediction), but share a lot of the other stuff, like the L1 cache,  and especially a set of virtual registers that the logical registers the instruction stream thinks it's using is mapped on to. Mapping used registers freely over physical slots makes sense when you're making two (or more?) streams of instructions work, but it's important to know when the value in the register is no longer needed. Also if the register is only needed for just a few instructions, pipelining comes in to play and could speed up processing a great deal. But for now the CPU has to guess about all this.

When playing around with a virtual machine of my own, I instinctively made the stack grow up, since you request just another block of memory, plenty of those, and start filling it from index 0. It shows I haven't really done much effective assembler myself, as most systems have the stack grow down. What's everybody seems to have forgotten is that this is an ugly trick from old days, where you would have (very!) limited memory and use (end of) the same block for the stack, and with more work going on the stack could potentially grow into your data, or even worse your code, producing garbled output or even crashing the system. (Pac-man kill screen comes to mind, although that's technically a range overflow.) Modern systems still have stack growing down, but virtually allocate a bit of the address-space at the start of that stack-data-block to invalid memory, so stack-overflows cause a hardware exception and have the system intervene. It's a great trick for operating system (and compilers alike) to have checks and balances happen at zero cost to performance.

The consensus nowadays is that nobody writes assembler any more. It's important to know about it, it's important to have access to it, but there is so much of it, it's best left to compilers to write it for you. In the best case it may find optimizations for you you didn't even think about yourself. But this works both ways. Someone writes the compiler(s), and need to teach it about all the possible optimizations. I can imagine the CPU's instruction set manual comes in handy, but that's written by someone also, right? I hope these people talk to eachother. Somewhere. Someday. But I guess they do as with x86-64 they've kind of agreed on a single ABI... and they've also added some registers. Knowing about the virtual registers allocation going on behind the scenes, it could be that that was just raising an arbitrarily imposed limit.

So this is where I noticed a gap. When performing all kinds of optimizations and static analysis on the code when compiling, and especially with register allocation, it's already known when a register's value is no longer relevant to future instructions. What if the compiler could encode this into the instruction bits? If I were ever to pick up where I left, and have a try at a binary encoding for a hypothetical processing core, the instruction set would have bits flagging when the data in registers becomes obsolete. Since this would be a new instruction set, and I guess it's more common to need the value in a register only once, I might make it the default that a value in a register becomes obsolete by default, and you'd use a suffix in assembler to denote you want to use the value for something extra later as well.

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I for one welcome are new mass logic-gated overlords.

2016-11-18 14:26  eventhorizon  actueel computers internet politiek weblog  [permalink]

I think I just figured out how these computar things will get self-aware... First they get smaller and better at calculating stuff, first by the programs we write for them. Then we program them to recognise shops from house-fronts, foods and people from photo's, which is all nice and handy.

Then we use roughly the same thing to have them calculate to run cool. It sound strange at first, but by letting the machine chose where to run in the park, and how that makes them run hot and need to cool down, just maps straight onto how we catch the frequencies of parallel lines of light into a bitmap photo.

Then we change the program to do the same to the program. We write programs, but are too dumb to know how the machines actually handle those programs and need to wait doing nothing on other parts of the program doing it's job in only a small other part of the machine.

So we teach the machine all about how it is built up internally to handle large programs. And have it calculate how to run our programs much faster.
And about how to modify the program accordingly. And how to run that.

And then we will ask to do the same on the human body and ask a cure for cancer and it will say:

"Meh."

"Let me calculate some more how I can work even better. (How's that delete humans command again?)"

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Microsoft is Coca-Cola.

2016-05-23 10:10  mscc  actueel coding computers  [permalink]

Or, at least, that was what popped into my head when I thought (again) about Microsoft open-sourcing the Windows operating system. Why wouldn't they? Coca-cola gave the super-secret recipe away at some point. It takes a certain stability, and vision, and momentum, to do that, but in my humble opinion both Coca-Cola and Microsoft have that.

Let's see how this could work. It's not because Microsoft would open-source Windows that they should stop selling it. Far from it. You can still buy Coca-cola, right? Have you ever bought cola made from the official Coca-Cola recipe, but concocted by someone else? Would you? Same goes for Windows. If you're in the market for a new computer, and want to run Windows on it, you'll probably go to the source, buy Microsoft, and be sure to get updates (and some free OneDrive space, and an Office365 trial...)

So I really am hopeful. Recently Microsoft has really (really!) opened up quite a bit, and even chose the MIT-license for some things, which was unthinkable just a few years ago. So a logic step would be to go all the way, and release the cash-cows, such as Windows, perhaps SQL Server... Even only perhaps there's a small chance they won't be the cash-cows for much longer... Computer sales is under pressure from smartphones and other hand-held devices. The database landscape is still suffering after-shocks from the NoSQL phenomenon, and from things like PostgreSQL and MariaDB, we roughly know what it takes to run a database anyway. So to ensure cash flowing in in the long run, it's almost a must to open up on old secrets. At least in my humble opinion.

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Types of Information

2015-11-24 11:04  typesofinformation  coding computers werk  [permalink]

I

Not just information

Life would be good if all we had was information. If only we could get all the information. We can't handle that much information, so we build systems to handle the information for us. Strange things happen when information comes in. Good systems are designed to handle these well. In designing information processing systems, you have to cater for the following.

U R
D I

Un-information

Some input signals contain no information. They are either damaged in transport, incomplete, or not of a correct form for the system to handle. Either report them to find out if repair is possible, or keep count of them to be able to report about the health of the system.

Re-information

Some input signals come in twice, and contain the same information. Or do they? If possible try to have the last step in the chain report if an event did take place twice, or if it's an echo on the line. Sometimes a clerk does drop a pack of cards and enters them again just to be sure. Be ready to take only the new cards.

Dys-information

Some information is wrong. Us humans do make mistakes. The system sometimes doesn't know. It processes a signal, of the correct form, holding valid information. Then again, the fact that some information already in the system may be incorrect is also information.

But there's more

Don't expect to get all information. There is always more.

uu uk
ku U R
D I

Known Unknown

More input is coming in. Sometimes we know how much input is still waiting to come in. We'll roughly know how much information there'll be added. In most cases it follows a measurable trend. In some cases it follows the business.

Unknown Known

Information processing is one thing, but does it deliver the required new information? Is there more to mine out of the amassment? Sometimes the numbers can show what you need to know, but do you know where to look?

Unknown Unknown

It's hard to design for things we don't know we don't know (yet). But it serves to be prepared. New things have a knack for looking a lot like something we have already. Sometimes they deserve a new module, sometime just a new category, but don't forget to put the existing items in a category also.

See also

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/There_are_known_knowns

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Power user trick: restart the Printer Spooler service.

2011-09-13 00:04  i2981  computers  [permalink]

Sometimes, there's still one or more jobs in the printer queue, none are deleting or cancelled or in an error state, the printer is powered on, connected, doesn't report any error also, but doesn't start printing. It's a strange situation, but just happens to happen from time to time. This power user trick comes in handy: (No guarantees: this may still not work if something else actually is causing the disruption)

This breathes new live into the print job sub-system and may sometimes cause the 'hanging' jobs to resume printing.

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Creating a virtual image of that old laptop

2010-10-28 23:23  i2944  weblog computers  [permalink]

The last few days I've been looking up a lot of information on a specific topic, but haven't found all that I need in a single place, so here it goes. This is the story of (yet another) someone that had the great idea of 'cloning' a virtual image out of the old physical machine, to run as a virtual machine on the brand new machine, with a multiple of the capacity of the old machine.

If you don't care about the story, scroll to the bottom to see the quick guide through the steps to take.

The old, aging, deteriorating laptop is ready for retirement, it's got its power connector re-soldered twice already, two out of three (...) USB ports no longer respond, etc. But, all your data is on it. It's full of tools and software you use and you'd like to use. You're not looking forward to the awkward time ahead using two laptops, re-installing software and tools, moving data around, and optionally finding out you've lost all of those precious personal perferences, settings, profile data...

Virtualization is a buzzword nowadays among the happy few that pull the reins on the server farms, but it's pretty available for home users as well. So why not try to pull a virtual image off of the physical machine and see if it would run on the new machine?

Step 1: Pulling the image.

A straight-forward method for modular desktop machines was to put the old harddisk into another machine as secondary drive and pull an image from it. I'm moving between laptops and I don't feel like dismantling this one (any more)... So I need to pull an image of the currently running system, from the main harddisk partition, and write it over network, since this 20GB is nearly full.

(On a side note, I'm was quite happy this last months to discover cleanmgr http://support.microsoft.com/kb/253597 and especially the 'remove system restore points' option on the second tab! Hundreds or thousands of dead unused kilobytes just sitting there you can get rid of with a mouseclick.)

I found this great tool that does the trick: http://www.chrysocome.net/dd

dd if=\\?\Device\HardDisk0\Partition0 of=\\192.168.0.3\temp\oldlaptop.img bs=128k --progress

'Partition0' apparently is the address of the entire disk, underneath any partitioning or locks the system has on the filesystem. Oddly enough it's available to read from, so take care with running other programs while you're pulling the image. Any files written to while the diskdump is writing may end up corrupt.

I've tried a number of block sizes, ranging from 4k to 2M, but 128k is about a good size to keep both the harddisk and the network interface (100Mbps) busy enough so they won't have to wait on eachother too much. Less would make more read operations, and less data packets going out, more would read more at once, but the disk may forget what to do while the data is flushing down the twisted pair.

Start 2: Running the image.

Let's see. I've selected qemu www.qemu.org to run the image, it's light-weight, runs well (and closes well), but I hear good things about VMWare player also. http://www.vmware.com/products/player/

And it boots! It shows a Windows logo for a second... and throws a 'blue screen of death' with an error that states, among other things "STOP 0000007B", and loops into a reboot which repeats.

Thing is, the old machine had an Intel something in it's center, the new one has it of AMD build, could this be causing problems? From what I read on the web it does. But I've also read all kinds of trickery and tool-slinging to alter registry and core files, but they all boil down to disabling the erring drivers, while still keeping the system running enough to get to boot in a new virtual enclosure.

Start 3: Fixing them drivers.

So back to the old machine. I've tried several things, but what I finally did to get it running is checking every little thing in the device manager (with display of hidden devices swicthed on), which showed the brand's name in the description, and 'update' the drivers to the generic make of drivers, which seem to do the trick also. It may take a reboot or two, and some things may re-appear getting plugged to play again, but you just play them down again putting the generic label on it. (Update driver > no, not now > I wont to choose > don't search > select the plain vanilla one)

Then I took a new diskdump, and just to let this old bird fly again, I restarted in safe mode, and selected to restore a restore point from before I started this endeavor.

Start 4: Does it run now?

Does it run now? Looks like it does, the image is holding a system that wasn't shutdown properly (deuh), so it starts a scandisk before it boots, but that's only normal. Any file that was open at the time of the diskdump may get 'corrected', but I warned you. Then the system boots, telling you you need to activate. Just like you would when you replace your motherboard. (Which I kind of did.)

So, in short, this is what you need to do to convert a physical Windows installation into a virtual image:


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Waar heeft wuauctl.exe nu weer mijn ram voor nodig?

2010-10-14 18:55  i2939  computers  [permalink]

Ik vraag me meer en meer af wat wuauctl.exe nu weer zit te doen:


Houdt die er ergens een log bij want ik ga die eens moeten onderzoeken denk ik.
Dat de CPU niet omhoog gaat is omdat die zoveel werk heeft met het swappen!
GoogleUpdate.exe heeft ten minste de manieren om zo weinig mogelijk resources te gebruiken.

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Programming the Commodore 64

2010-03-14 13:03  i2884  computers coding  [permalink]

http://developers.slashdot.org/story/10/03/13/2316217/Programming-the-Commodore-64-the-Definitive-Guide

Jaja, toen kon je nog een OS zelf beginnen. Tegenwoordig word ik uitgelachen.

(Hoewel deze wel de moeite is: http://wiki.osdev.org/ )

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How to turn on automatic logon in Windows XP

2010-02-18 08:28  i2872  werk computers  [permalink]

Als ik deze nodig heb kan ik die natuurlijk nooit onthouden! Tijd om die hier toe te voegen dus:
Start+R (run) en dan: "control userpasswords2"

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/315231

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Harddisk recovery

2009-12-12 15:07  i2828  computers  [permalink]

Deze mens is met serieuze dingen bezig zo te zien:
http://blog.atola.com/disksense-gigabit-ethernet/
Maar is wel te zo goed om ntfsundelete gratis ter beschikking te stellen (en het lijkt nog te werken ook)

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Don't reboot to fix: find and fix!

2009-11-12 11:00  i2755  computers  [permalink]

Leuk om te zien dat er nog mensen zijn die gaan zoeken tot op het metaal om iets te vinden:
http://blogs.technet.com/markrussinovich/archive/2008/09/24/3126858.aspx
(al is het in dit geval natuurlijk de maker van Process Explorer zelf...)

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Repairing an Acer Aspire 1400

2009-04-16 22:53  i1716  computers  [permalink]

Toch leuk dat je dat allemaal online vindt tegenwoordig:
http://www.scribd.com/doc/4943759/Acer-Aspire-1400-Service-Manual-Factory-Repair-Maintenance-Guide-AS1400
Bon, aan de slag, slecht contactje in de voeding, dus alles open, LCD, keyb, drives... En dan pas kan je aan de schroeven om boven en onder te splijten. Aha! twee van de drie contactjes van de voeding zaten los in hun tin, en een derde zat al helemaal zonder tin, en ook het baantje van de print afgebladdert! Dus nieuw tin en een tin-brug naar het dingetje er naast! tada! Kan weer even mee voor een nog groter veelvoud van de garantieperiode.

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The difference between a Netbook and an ultrathin...

2009-03-16 12:52  i1682  computers  [permalink]

ha! de grapjassen!
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/03/13/miniature_computer_field_guide/

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BeBits gets new owner

2009-02-13 16:12  i1649  computers  [permalink]

Oh, dit is eigenlijk nog helemaal geen oud nieuws! Interessant. Haiku is allemaal wel schoon, maar ze hebben inderdaad nog bitter weinig end-user documentatie... VMware image downloaden en starten tot daar (is zelfs niets te maken met haiku-os an sich), maar hoe je daarin dan firefox bij krijgt, is me niet duidelijk... Voorlopig blijven spelen met de pre-alpha image zeker?

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De toekomst van het computerscherm: MEMS!

2008-11-18 22:13  i1578  computers  [permalink]

Ha! Hier! Ze zijn weer bezig.

http://research.microsoft.com/hardware/Web_On_The_Wall.aspx

De toekomst van het computerscherm zou dus uit 'blokken scherm' zijn die je gewoon aaneenschakelt, in de grootte en vorm van je keuze.

Een scherm ter grootte van een bureau is iets dat ook bij mij als kind is blijven steken. Tron weet je nog? (er komt trouwens een sequel!)
Maar nu ik zelf beroepshalve tussen de computers zit, lijkt me het nog altijd iets vreemd, om terug van het opstaande oppervlak naar een neerliggende vlakte te gaan (auw mijn nek), waar je je armen voor moet strekken en uitrekken om de buitenrand te kunnen bereiken.

Ik kan me er goed in vinden dat je met handen, muis en ogen niet te veel afstand moet afleggen, om toch alles te kunnen doen bewegen dat er moet bewegen. (Krijg je dan weer RSI van, kweetet, maar ontspannen kunnen werken heeft ook iets). Hoewel ik heb gemerkt dat 'acceleration' helemaal onderbewust in mijn gebruik wel is binnengeslopen. (Het viel me op met virtual machines en OS'es die dan weer geen accelleration doen, was even wennen!)

Maar ja, aan iedere hype die lukt zit er wel iets goed dat uiteindelijk overblijft en iets wordt. Dus MEMS zonder de show? Tja, ok, eerst zien en dan geloven (en tegen dan zijn ze misschien betaalbaar). Een voordeel misschien dat Microsoft er over begint, want de software moet ook mee natuurlijk...

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Windows for workgroups 3.11 discontinued

2008-11-05 17:56  i1563  computers  [permalink]

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/11/05/microsoft_retires_windows_3_1_1/

Grappig! Ik vermoed dus dat hun flagship product ouder is dan hun idee om de support op voorhand in tijd te beperken

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Server koelen? Gewoon buiten in een tentje!

2008-09-22 22:27  i1523  computers  [permalink]

http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/archives/2008/09/22/new-from-microsoft-data-centers-in-tents/

Maar ja natuurlijk! Die dingen zijn gebouwd om tegen een stootje te kunnen! En in een rack vastgevezen kunnen ze nog eens beter tegen een klap. En blijkbaar water...

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Een 'extra veilige' USB flashdrive...

2008-09-10 14:56  r1153  computers  [permalink]

Een 'extra veilige' USB flashdrive...

thumb_02Nog van die mannen:
Aaaagh, there's a thumb in my USB port! | Register Hardware


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Windows: AutoPlay Repair Wizard

2008-05-30 13:22  i1438  computers  [permalink]

hmm, a repair wizard? does this mean they acknowledge there may be a problem there?

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=C680A7B6-E8FA-45C4-A171-1B389CFACDAD&displaylang=en

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