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Monday, March 24, 2008

Microsoft Habu Again

Some time back, I was hit by the Habu cable problem. So I called Microsoft and despite I won this in a contest and was not able to produce a receipt, they are kind enough to work this out for me and I was given a replacement.

Search "Habu Cable Problem" or :

Apparently, there are some things they could had iron out, but whatever the case, Microsoft still get a 5 stars from me for the excellent replacement. They even got it deliver y to my place in person (because they do not have a service center here). So, do not think that the 3 years warranty on your Microsoft Product is BS. Its not, when you needed the warranty.

R4 NDS V1.17

Its only been 1 month and V1.17 is released.

The changes :
Update R4 v1.17 kernel 2008-3-18
1)Solved the brightness problem after soft-resetting
2)Solved 2107 the "Thanks" problem
3)Solved 2110 problem

I had a repack as usual for this. This package includes the user codes from Datel Action Replay for EU and US codes up to 24 March 2008.

Download now :

CWCheat 0.2.2

Ok, to cut down on the download size, I had decide to totally ripped this one and only include the upgrade from previous version for hte PSP Slim. But on top of that, I throw in the updated DB as of today (24 Mar 2008).

Installation is simple as before, grab the file, extract all to your /seplugins/ directory. Well, only exception is that if you have more plugins such as the USBSlimCharge etc, you should not overwrites the 3 TXT files, but edit them manually.

I had decide to drop the POP Cheat DB from future release as well unless its updated. Its been like Sep 07 till now and its wasting 2.5MB of space in each release.

So here you have it :

Goodbye U3

U3 is a really powerful tool for carrying around your stuff on the move in your USb stick. Yes, on your face again. It doesn't work with mac or linux. That beside the point, U3 boost security enhancement by not leaving cache, passwords etc on the system. That I do not debate. However, this sword is sharp both ends. U3 is actually capable of reaping off information from the host system! Surprise? Check out U3 Switchblade.

U3 Switchblade :

This is not even news as it has been around for a long time. Basically, when you insert the U3 stick, you will need to allow it to execute (at admin prviledge) in order for it to start launch pad or mount the protected partition. However, if you think the U3 launchpad and base core is protected, you are wrong. Its basically a part of the firmware and can be rewritten. What can you change? emm, how about a quick capture of passwords hashes to use with your Ophcrack, or all the serials number of your M$ product dumped (heck,s its not too long to dump the whole software branch of the registry anyway). OF course, it up to you to imagine. Just edit the image and inject your payload and flash it back into you U3. Yes, you probably want to run the original U3 launch pad at the end too...

Then insert into victims computer and ya, if you did it well, no prompt, nothing... It just run silently and grab everything need to be placed onto the USb stick. Well, its not foolproof of course. Certain antivirus software are capable of grabbing these. OneCare, Kaspersky and other behaviour detection engines based software will alert if you try to touch some registry or scan network for example.

Well, this article is not tell you not to use U3. But be aware when someone else passed you a U3 stick and ask you to mount it in the future. You do not need to even run the U3 Launch pad actually if the U3 Stick is not protected by a password. Just ignore all autoruns and you are much safer.

Don't judge yet...

Well, what can I say, don't judge a book by its cover (too quickly)...

Friday, March 14, 2008

ReadyBoost - Swapfile on Steriods

Yes, lets finally talk about a Vista feature which is so never talked about. I am sure you have come across the word ReadyBoost or ReadyDisk. The only difference is just the media, one is a flash drive, the other is a damn fast HDD (like the raptor).

I wouldn't want to conduct a test again since there are tons out there. See these :

There are more, but I find this report realisitic. Now, my side of the story. A cheap Flashdrive 4GB at $30+. With my PC max to 3GB (4GB won't work in 32bits OS), is there anything else to boost performance? Yes, there is and its cheap. I got this un-certified for ReadyBoost stick and plug it in and guess what? It's fast enough for ReadyBoost. Since its cheap, I just put all the 4GB into ReadyBoost. the recommendation however is to match you memory. 3GB to 3GB of ReadyBoost, just similar to swap files.

Before I go on, I know some people will think this is cheaper than putting in 4GB of RAM. Well, that is correct as far as cheaper is concerned. But its not FASTER. ReadyBoost is more like putting the swap file onto flash disk. Flash disk have much much more performance and power in random seek compare to HDD. Moreover, for thoseo f you who does not have the technology to defrag your swap file, ReadyBoost will ready make the swap file look bad. Therefore you will have a significant boost in performance.

Now, for myself, bootup improved a bit, but not much. However opening and closing applications and games, well, that is the part that kick ass. And guess what I heard its not even properly optimized. After installing Vista SP1, you will kick asses a lot harder. :)

so, its really good (and cheap) to upgrade and push your day to day performance (yes, not talking about 3DMark or just to win in benchmark scenario). However, for the crazy and the zeolets, let me say this, the choice of your stick determines how much harder your kicking is (on the ass). By far, I had seen (with my own eyes) that fastest being Umbrella's (sorry, I mean Sony's) Micro Vault Turbo with Read/Write 26/19Mbps. Its a freaky $90 here for the 4GB, comparing to other cheaper ones such as the one I got for $32. Of course, for the zeolets, there is
OCZ's ATV Turbo USB 2.0 which is 35/30Mbps anytime (which I found cheapest USD$67).

Sony's Micro Vault Turbo 4G

OCZ's ATV Turbo USB 2.0

And last thing, if you are using Mac, TOO BAD. If you are using Linux, TOO BAD + Does USB even works for you?

Here is a list of user review ReadyBoost devices :

Cool Blue to Evil Red - The switch to the dark side

I am surprised that during the 80s, show were so stereotype. The good guys always uses the blue laser, and the bad guys the red in almost all the sci fi movie I can name. But today, I find the evil red looks cool. See for yourself :

This mouse has some functions that seriously make hte habu looks bad, like Quick Turn, which allows you to calibrate and turn 180 degrees in your FPS, looking behind and back is just 1 click away. For FPS, this mouse also has on-the-fly Precision Booster which allows you to zoom in with high precision when using a sniper rifle. The mouse also feature custom weights so that you can adjust until you love hte weight on the mouse. Cool? There is a on the fly dpi changer with 3 adjustable settings. This has pro and con with Habu's dpi up/down switch. This also comes with a angler to weight down the execessive cables so that it does get in your way when you are trying to do quick movements with your mouse.

See more at :

Well, the down side is this mouse is not for everyone. The size and shape is one thing. some people just can't reach the button based on they way they hold the mouse. For me, its just nice. The connector is not 24k gold. Also this is not from Razor, but Microsoft. So if put together with the Reclusa, it a clear contrast of Cool Blue vs Evil Red there... Maybe Microsoft will reveal a Evil Red Keyboard soon?

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Warhammer 40K Dawn of War Soulstorme MP Race Enabler

Ok, finally its time to remove Dark Crusade and leave only Soulstorm in there. However, you will realized that in Multiplayer you can only play Dark Eldars or Sisters of Battle. To have the rest of the race, you just have to install the following :

I stress again that you will still need to have legit version of Dawn of War, Winter Assault and Dark Crusade forthe CD-KEY. This software will not give you keys for that. It just helps you save some space by removing those software away.

If you uninstall Soulstorm someday, just uninstall this software as well to remove away the keys and extra files it has placed in your computer.

Configure Backup Disabled on Windows Home Server

OK, maybe its just me, but here is another trick for anyone else who has this problem. OK, you added another machine. The tray icon turns red because you have not configure Backup for this. You open the Home Connector software and under Computer and Backup, you see your server. Right Click to configure it and WTF, the options are all greyed out!

Why? I did not waste time to figure it out. I just tried to solve it. With many way from the client side: restarting the Home Connector Software, restarting the client OS, disconnect and reconnect it from the Network etc. I almost wanted to reset my months running router. Then I found the solution. Here is what you do.

Use Remote Desktop into your SERVER. Launch the Home Connector Software on the Server. And yes, yes! The options are not greyed out. Its enabled. Just do it!

Thats solve this issue. There is also a similar issue when I experience the backup was skipped and I did a manual backup. However, the status still says it hasn't been backup in the last 6 days. I did the same thing on the server and instantly it was updated with the status that all backup was done.

What happened? Maybe Microsoft will have an answer, but I do not think many people has this same problem here. Maybe its just me, or just Microsoft OneCare... :)

Windows Home Server Connector Installlation Problem

I had seen lots of post detailing how to solve the problem of installing this software. Especially the part where it cannot find the WHS. I have a totally unorthodox way to do it, yeet it works for me.

First do make sure you can ping you WHS, otherwise, it definitely a network problem and not related to the software for you.

When you get to the part it say unknown error occurs, cannot find WHS etc, call up your Task Manager. Look for a few msiexec.exe file under Processes. Make sure you are not installing anything else at this same time. Kill them. If you are lucky, kill one and the rest falls.

Now, under the Applications tab, kill the Windows Home Server Connector software. It may ask you to Exit or something, do that will do as well.

What actually happens? IF you did not kill msiexec.exe, it will remove the software (rollback) when you exit the connector installation. But since its dead, the software stay. If you are lucky, it already running with a green icon on tray now when you exit. Totally working. If not just start it from Start Menu.

My conclusion is that somehow the detection during the installation is kinda screwed up. It works for many PC I tried. It justed work, even though the installation say it can't find the server. Hopes this helps.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Windows Home Server Super Pack 1

Ok, this is just a fancy name I give to the WHS for those additional hardware I put in. Here is the list :

Enlight AIO Card Reader $16
Exhaust Fan $5
HDD Cooler Dual Fan 2x$10=$20 (One for each HDD)
3.5" Floppy Drive Black $12
Sony/Liteon DVD Writer 16x $40
Acebel 470W High Efficiency Power $72
SIS 1GB DDR2-800 RAM $34 (I added it to 2GB for performance)

That bring a total of $199. Well over my original $800 Budget :P. Consider the throw in of WHS Software which is about $250, that will being the whole box cost slightly over $1.1k. Well, is this worth it? Sure. It has much better hardware and more flexibility than the OEM. Imagine the OEM box you will buy has only 1x500GB HDD at $1.2k+ and without some of the stuff above. What do you think?

However, this is because I am greedy. If you stick to the basic pack, there is no reason you will exceed $800 in hardware. In fact I paid a little more on some of the stuff above because it makes me feel good. :)

Well, Enter UNICRON!

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Something BIG is coming?

My head is splitting. I dont know if you belive me, but I think I am senstivie to the tectonic plates movements. I often get headaches when an earthquake is coming. I had a bad one these few days. I slept ok, my blood pressure is normal and I have not been playing FPS much...

I can only hope I am wrong.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Ghost Mail in Outlook

Due to a SMTP failure, some of the mail and receipt were stuck in Outlook. However, these are never shown in the Outbox or Deleted Folders. I keep seeing some mail trying to send out every few minutes, but I was never able to pin point that was wrong.

So, here is the solution to remove those failed acknowledgment and stuff :

You should download this utility from Microsoft :

Monday, March 03, 2008

Xiao P is sleeping...

The weather is hot in the few days and I guess thats what makes Xiao P feels hot too. He is sticking his head out while he sleep. He has lost some fur on his face due to molting...

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Windows Home Server - The Inside

Ok, lets take a look inside of the WHS.

Pretty messy no matter how I tried to tidy it.

Cooler Masters Back fan.

The bird's eye view. Notice the 2 HDD fan (gold) and the exhaust fan?

A close up of the 2 HDD fans. Its a must no matter how much you use the HDD. Without it, the life span will shorten and failure rate will increase.

The Pentium D Processor and Fan.

2 Sticks of the SIS DDR-800 1GB RAM.

This is the exhaust fan sucking all the hot air out.

I will put up another articles for the additional parts I added in later on.

Windows Home Server - The Outside

Ok, lets see version of the the finishing product. I had added some other components in addition to the previous specs and this is how it looks like. Kinda remind me of K.I.T.T from Knight Rider though. Although this casing is call VIOS 9002, it has NOTHING to do with cars though. :)

This is the front, the DVD Writer is concealed in a bay door just like the F117.

The black reflective surface gives it a good look. It has none of the stealth fighter's radar wave adsorption capabilities though.

The back is not concealed for ventilation. It has an additional exhaust fan in PCI slot if you can see it and sleeve fan mounted at the back plate. The 4 USB ports can be seen from here of the Asus Mobo.

This is another close up of the front.

And this is the reason why its cool. Its blue, just like my Habu and Reclusa.

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