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Monthly Archives: April 2006

TrippleHead2Go… a new gadget that kicks butt!

OK, so you’ve seen, or heard of the Matrox innovation called DualHead2Go for notebooks right?  If you haven’t, check it out, it’s pretty slick.  In our world of ever more precious screen real estate, most developers have at least two monitors (if they have a desktop) or their laptop plus an external monitor.  Now the multi monitor need has been around for a long time, especially if you were an investor (or should I say day trader) during the stock market boom of the late 90’s, but it really became a craze and was finally embraced by video card manufacturers when gamers started demanding it.
 
What’s cooler than being able to stretch your Quake, F.E.A.R. or Rainbow Six, Madden or even your favorite Flight Simulator out across multiple monitors?
 
Of course the problem has always been that with two monitors housing your game experience, there’s this annoying strip down the middle… yeah, I’m talking about the edge of the monitor where the two monitors, side by side, meet.  Now as a developer, this isn’t a problem because you have different full screen apps running on each monitor, but as a gamer, it is rather distracting.
 
Some companies tried solving the problem by producing monitors designed to go side by side with very, very thin edges, but truth be told, that was NEVER really a solution to the problem.
 
Enter TrippleHead2Go and suddenly, the ultimate gaming experience is within reach!
 
The solution is not to make the monitor edges thinner, but to use a third monitor… BRILLIANT!  What TrippleHead2Go does is stretch your video output across three monitors, each at 1280 x 1024 resolution making it appear to Windows as if you actually have a 3840 x 1024 desktop resolution.  Now placing three nice LCD monitors side by side and slightly tilting the outside monitors inward, you can get a truly surround experience from a flight simulator.
 
As you can tell, the TrippleHead2Go is so new that the manufacturer Matrox does not even have it on its web site yet.  According to CPU Magazine (one of my favorites) it is expected to list at around $300.  Now there’s incentive to drop a grand on the TrippleHead2Go and three LCD monitors!
 
The possibilities are absolutely endless…
 
Later
C
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Posted by on April 16, 2006 in Gadgets

 

IE 6 Address bar spoofing bug is cause for concern!

This one seriously scares me.
I’m hoping Microsoft has a patch REAL soon for this.
Hai Nam Luke discovered the bug and Secunia has a page where you can test your browser to see if it is vulnerable.
Check it out here:
 
 
It will scare you… I guarantee it!
Later
C
 
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Posted by on April 13, 2006 in Musings

 

Back where I want to be…

Well, as you may have deduced from my BizTalk/Great Plains/eConnect posts lately, I have been involved in technology other than SharePoint.  SharePoint is my passion so I’m happy to say that I’m going to have the opportunity to focus most of my time on SharePoint going forward.
I should have the opportunity to really dive into Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 in much more detail and now that the NDA has been lifted, look for much more on the topic right here!
 
Later
C
 
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Posted by on April 9, 2006 in Musings

 

The loader can not find the ‘C:\DOCUME~1\……\InstMsiW.exe’ file neccesary to load the Windows Installer.

Tip Summary
  1. Run the Setup.
  2. Leave the error dialog window open.
  3. Navigate to the folder, one level above the one listed in the error dialog window.
  4. Copy the listed folder.
  5. Close the error dialog.
  6. Copy a copy of the "InsMsiW.exe" file to the copied folder.
  7. Rename the copied folder, removing the "Copy of " from the name.
  8. Run the setup from the copied folder.
Detail
OK, so I was building a new Office 2007 server VPC and I wanted to install the Send a Smile/Frown (SASsetup.exe) on the server.  My client VPC running Windows XP ran the SASsetup.exe installation just fine.
The Send a Smile/Frown tool is the coolest thing I’ve used in a Beta program and it works just great on the client side so I thought it a good idea to also have it available on the server side of things.
The server is running Windows Server 2003.
I double clicked the SASsetup.exe file and what do you know… I got the following error:
 
 
 
As you can see, the installer refuses to run.
This intrigued me and I figured there simply had to be a workaround for it.
So I asked my friend Google.
He didn’t seem to know too much about the topic.
Now THAT really got my curiosity going!
 
First I reran the setup again, but this time I did NOT click the "OK" button to close the error dialog window.
I opened a Windows Explorer window and navigated my way to the folder that the error dialog mentioned.
The folder looked like this:
 
 
 
I then copied all the files in the folder to the clipboard and navigated up one folder level.
I created a new folder at this level and copied the files into it.
Next I did a search for the "InsMsiW.exe" file on the server.
Obviously and to no surprise I could not find it on the server VPC.
So I then did a search on the client VPC and tada!
I found the file.

Next I copied the the "InsMsiW.exe" file from the client VPC to the same folder.

Finally, I copied the name of the previous temp folder "IXP000.TMP" in this case, to the clipboard.
I then switched back to the error dialog window and clicked the "OK" button.
You will notice Windows cleaning up and removing the IXP000.TMP folder.
At this point, I simply renamed my temp folder to the IPX000.TMP name leaving it looking like this:
 
 
 
At this point, all I had to do was double clikc the "Setup.exe" file to launch the installer.
Here’s the evidence!
 
 
 
 
The installer completed successfully and I finally had my smileys!
 
 
 
Later
C
 
 
8 Comments

Posted by on April 5, 2006 in Tips

 

Best omelets anywhere!

I had the best darn omelet I’ve every had in my ENTIRE life today…
Not since my days in the Air Force where the chefs in the Officer’s Mess would whip up a delicious ham & cheese omelet have I had anything even remotely close to this.
I’m so happy to have found this new little gem!
The place…
 
 
Yum!
 
Later
C
 
2 Comments

Posted by on April 2, 2006 in Musings

 

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Posted by on April 1, 2006 in Musings

 

Windows Desktop Search rocks!

In checking through my email, my latest Microsoft Download notification showed a new iFilter for Windows Desktop Search.
 
 
And then it hit me that I’ve not noted my opinion on WDS yet.
As a SharePoint MVP, it should be no surprise that the world of "Search" would feature pretty heavily in my daily life, afterall, one of SharePoint’s great capabilities is search!
 
For a couple of years now I’ve held the belief that the amount of information we are managing has quite simply grown far beyond the capabilities of traditional File & Folder management structures… my 1.5 TB RAID Data server is testimony to that!  Furthermore, accessing information in such a "Jurassic" way is not only becoming harder and harder to do, but is beyond all else very time ineffective… and time, is the most precious commodity of all!
 
I converted my personal information access methodology a couple of years ago from Folder based to Search based access.  Now believe me when I tell you, at first it is very hard to "let go".  The human nature of resistance to change fights like a nicotine habit that won’t let go.
It is very hard to change your way of information access and it takes lots of time to fully "kick the habit" if you will.  Once you begin to realize the amazing ability to find information, even information you didn’t even know was there, believe me, you won’t be going back to folders.
Sure folders are still used… I mean, you gotta put the data somewhere right?
The point is just that the structure of the folder system doesn’t matter as much anymore.  All you need is somewhere to put it where your search tool can get to it and index it.
 
I started my venture into the world of desktop search at the continual raving of Michael J. Miller, at the time the Senior Editor at PC Magazine.  I’d been a PC Magazine subscriber for years and Michael would simply not shut up (no offense intended) about how great his X1 search tool was.  It seemed like every issue he found some way to note that X1 was a life saver he simply could not live without.
 
After continually hearing this, I eventually broke down and thought, OK, what’s so good about this tool?  Let’s find out.
I downloaded a trial version of X1, installed it and unleashed it on my data.  Given the large amount of data it had to index, it took a while.
The beauty of it was that it would index not only my local files, but also all my email.  Of course it was able to index files inside ZIP’s etc.  Suddenly, I was able to find information I never even knew I had!
 
I use Outlook for my email and it’s a pretty accurate statement to say I live inside Outlook.  If it’s not in email or on my Outlook calendar, it doesn’t exist in my world.  Therefore it was important for me to unify all my activities in Outlook where X1 could index it.
 
I found the IntraVNews RSS reader (yeah, yeah I hear all the NewsGator fanatics moaning already!) that was able to pull all my RSS subscriptions right into Outlook as email… where X1 could index it.  That meant all the blogs and community sites now became a source of information for me.
 
Then I found a way to bring one of my most important activities into the fold.  Newsgroups…  I spend a considerable amount of time on the newsgroups and as anyone would tell you, most of the time you’re answering the same questions that people already asked in the past.  By using NewsHound, I was able to bring my newsgroup activities into Outlook as well… and you guessed it, X1 could index it too!  The reason for my choice of NewsHound (there was only one other competing product at the time) was it’s guarantee of not interfering with other Outlook add-ins.  This was very important to me since I had several add-ins already in IntraVNews (RSS feeds), Snag-It (needs no introduction) and Qurb (the best white list tool around).
 
I ended up buying the professional version of X1 because I needed the ability to index network shares a.k.a. my RAID Server.  At $90 it wasn’t cheap by any means, but it was well worth it.
 
Of course once I discovered my new information access methodology, I had to pass it on to my wife.  The only problem was that I didn’t want to fork out another $90 for another copy and running a second copy is not just immoral… it is also illegal!
 
Right around that time was when Windows Desktop Search appeared, which finally brings us to the title of this post.  I investigated the tool and though it is still growing, it had the basics… and it was free!
I installed it and let it do it’s magic.
I must say that I’m very impressed with Windows Desktop Search.
I’m not real keen on the whole MSN Search tie in they’re trying to do as I prefer my Google Toolbar for web searches (lightning strikes me dead for not using a Microsoft product!) but as long as I can set it to just search the desktop, which I can, I’m happy with it.
 
Given the cool new features in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 which not only has much better spam filtering, but also has native RSS capabilities, together with the upcoming ReachOut (I’m part of the Alpha program for this newsgroup reader in Outlook, similar to NewsHound) and Windows Desktop Search, there would be no need for third party tools… Sweet!
 
So if you haven’t given Windows Desktop Search a try, please do so.  You won’t be sorry.  You can download it here:
 
 
Also remember to download the iFilter add-ins that enabled indexing for PDF’s, ZIP’s etc.  iFilters can be downloaded here:
 
 
 
Later
C
 
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Posted by on April 1, 2006 in Search