Recently at the office we had a brown-out with devastating consequences. All our servers are managed by UPSes and on this particular occasion, at the precise moment of this brownout the UPS failed and server lost power abruptly. This caused some error in Directory Services, becasue after the boot the Windows Server 2003 (and primary domain controller) showed a message during bootup (but after logon) saying "The Active Directory is rebuilding indices", just before network connection preparations. It hadn't done this before.
After several hours waiting for this to go away (the server seemed responsive during the process so we left it) nothing changed. We forcibly reboot the machine and it booted into Safe Mode automatically.
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After several reboots and a scheduled CHKDSK /f on bootup, nothing changed, so we booted into Directory Services Repare mode to investigate further. Now, looking through the event log showed that even more things were going wrong including the computer name being missing the domain being all messed up and an array of other issues, the most worring being several Event Id's 1168 and 1003.
After a bit of googling I found this page, and based on my own knowledge condensed and modified the solution to work in my case:
- First, boot the machine into Directory Services Repair Mode
- Next, open a command window.
- Then, type the command: cd %SystemRoot%\Ntds
- Execute the command: Esentutl.exe /p Ntds.dit for me this took 8.3 seconds to execute.
Basically, the esentutl.exe is a utility used to perform various administrative actions on any databases using Microsoft Proprietary Database format. The Directory Services Database uses this format. The '/p' argument tells the utility to perform a "repair" on the second argument, which obviously is the database file.
Warning: The Ntds.dit file is the heart and soul of Active Directory on your domain. Take extreme care with this file because if you don't have an adequate backup of the system state on the domain controller, you may irrecoverably corrupt your domain. This would be bad.
In my case, everything went smoothly, and the domain was back up after a reboot back into "normal" mode. Obviously, we changed the UPS with a working one. Who says network admins never get a happy ending?
As I've indicated earlier, I am a massive fan of Apple's Magic Mouse. While it does carry a heavy price tag, I thought it was completely worth it. But a sad draw-back was that under Windows (pecicially Boot Camp), the mouse only works as a standard 2 button mouse.
But thanks to a little hackery from Apple’s Bluetooth Update (located here) the Magic Mouses driver was extracted via WinRar resulting in a 32bit version and a 64bit version that you can install on any ordinary Windows PC that will enable all the scrolling ‘magic’ of the Magic Mouse.
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I've just stumbled across a neat little web application which allows you to visually explore your Twitter network. It allows you to discover which people interact the most and what they're talking about, as well as traverse the Twitter-verse and finds links to people you might otherwise not have found. Think "six degrees of separation" for your Twitter followers.
The visualization runs right in your browser and displays data from the Twitter API. According to the maker, Asterisq, it works like this:
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Mentionmap loads each user's Twitter status updates (tweets) and finds the people and hashtags they talked about the most. The data is displayed using Constellation Framework, a graph visualization library for Actionscript.
In this data visualization, mentions become connections and discussions between multiple users emerge as clusters.
Clicking a user will display their network of mentions as well as details from their profile. You can also search for friends by typing their Twitter user-names into the search box.
I think this visualization is really neat, and I'd really recommend you check it out and have a play. I found it very interesting to see the relationships between the people I primarily converse with on Twitter.
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MagicPrefs is a free menubar application which aims to improve the functionality and configuration options of the Apple Magic Mouse.
- It features the ability to bind a variable number of finger clicks, taps, swipes, pinch and other gestures to functions like Middle Click , Hold Down Both Mouse Buttons , Spaces , Expose, Dashboard etc.
- Touch Sensitivity implements a single point control for a number of factors impacting the algorithms of the taps, swipes, pinche and other gestures.
- Tracking Speed adds the ability to increase the maximum mouse speed by a extra 200%.
- Also featured is a real-time display of the fingers touching the surface of the mouse that you can enable to test
You can download it, here for free.
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I like to figure out the fastest way to do things. I hope these shortcuts will help you become the power user that lies within. These keystrokes should work on Mac OS 10.6 Snow Leopard and 10.5 Leopard (many also work on 10.4 Tiger). I add new shortcuts as I find them, so check back! I’m still exploring Snow Leopard and will be updating this page as I discover new goodies.
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Please note that Cmd is short for the Command key (otherwise called the Apple key).
Guide to the Mac’s Menu Symbol:
|Open Sidebar item in a new window
|Switch Finder views (Icon, List, Column, Cover Flow)
||Cmd-1, Cmd-2, Cmd-3, Cmd-4
|In List view, expand a folder
|In List view, collapse a folder
|Rename the selected file/folder
||Press Return (or Enter)
|Go into selected folder or open the selected file
|Go to parent folder
||Cmd-[ (that’s left square bracket)
||Cmd-] (that’s right square bracket)
|Select the next icon in Icon and List views
||Tab (Shift-Tab reverses direction)
|Alternate columns in Column View
||Tab (Shift-Tab reverses direction)
|Instantly show long file name (for names condensed with a “...”)
||Hold Option while mousing over long filenames
|Resize current column to fit the longest file name
||Double-Click column resize widget
|Resize all columns to fit their longest file names
||Option Double-Click resize widget
|Copy and Paste files
||Cmd-C, then Cmd-V
|Move a file instead of copying. (Copies the file to the destination and removes it from the original disk.)
||Cmd-Drag file to disk
|Move selected files to the Trash
|Empty the Trash (with warning)
|Empty the Trash (without warning)
|Cancel a drag-n-drop action while in the midst of dragging
|Show Inspector (a single, live refreshing Info window)
|Undo the last action (such as rename file, copy file, etc.)
|Hide/Show Sidebar (on the left)
|Move or Remove item in toolbar (at the top of the window).
This works in most programs.
|Open Quick Look (Mac OS 10.5)
||With file selected, tap Spacebar (or Cmd-Y)
|Zoom In/Out on a Quick Look Preview
||Cmd-Plus(+) or Cmd-Minus(-)
|Find by File Name (Mac OS 10.5)
My workstation at work is a great little computer. It's running Windows 7 and its very reliable and does what I need it to do. However, periodically, usually during periods of large quanities of network traffic, it will freeze. No BSOD, no warning, just frozen.
After some googling, it seems that the on-board Atheros L1 Gigabit Ethernet adpater on the ASUS motherboard has a known issue with Windows Vista, and apparently Windows 7 as well:
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Install a new driver The problem may be especially prominent with the Atheros L1 Gigabit Ethernet 10/100/1000Base-T Controller used on ASUS p5k motherboards. This driver (FTP Link), intended for Windows Vista, has been reported to solve this issue under Windows 7 in a variety of cases.
I downloaded the driver from here, and installed it on top of the generic Windows driver for the NIC and not a single freeze or lock-up since.
If you have an ASUS P5K series motherboard, I highly recommend that you upgrade this driver (even if you're not having these problems as the performance seems better on these drivers).