Thursday, October 30, 2008

Firefox Themes: Ten Firefox Themes as Dark as Your Soul

Here are some additional 'dark' Firefox themes. For now I've settled on Aero Fox.

Firefox Themes: Ten Firefox Themes as Dark as Your Soul

Courtesy of


Monday, October 27, 2008

Syslinux boot local harddisk

Nothing too crazy about this one. I was working on a USB boot disk that boots a syslinux menu and I wanted/needed a menu item that would attempt to boot from the local hard disk.

This is what I came up with.

LABEL bootlocal
MENU LABLE Boot local hard disk
localboot 0


You'll notice after the local boot is a 0 (zero). Sometimes on computers that have a recovery partition as 0 you may get an error. The answer in this case would be to try localboot 1 or localboot 2 and see if you get better results.

Still learning...


FDE on Dell e6400

Problem: Unable to enable FDE (Full Disk Encryption) on re-imaged Dell e6400 laptop. The settings button is grayed out and there is no option to encrypt the drive, only password restrict access to the drive.

Solution: Make sure that your SATA drive mode in the BIOS is set to AHCI or ATA. IRRT will not allow the WAVE systems FDE module to be configured.

The Story: After fighting with this for many days and finally surrendering my pride and chatting online with Dell support with no results, I emailed Wave Systems (the makers of the Wave Security Suite products included in Dells) and they promptly responded by email advising me that the only supported SATA modes are legacy ATA and AHCI.



Sunday, October 26, 2008

The dark (theme) side of Firefox - Mozilla Links

I've had recently developed a love for 'dark themes'. Both on my desktop and now in my Firefox.

Check out some nice looking, dark, Firefox themes here The dark (theme) side of Firefox - Mozilla Links


CD-R Media comparison RiData vs. Memorex


Think all CDR media is the same?? Think again. I have repeatedly had problems with Memorex media on multiple burners.

One media that I have found to be cheap and extremely reliable is media by RiData and I prefer to purchase it in bulk from

During a recent XP installation I was getting some odd errors and after three tries I realized it was bad CD-R media (Memorex was all I had at the time)

To support my point, I just happened to notice the 'transparency' difference between the RiData and Memorex media as seen in the photo above.

I suspect that my 'writing' on the Memorex disk was causing read issues.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

VBS to query AD

Problem: I need to get an excel spreadsheet with a list of computer names and their descriptions.

~Use VBS script to query AD and output all fields for computer objects to .txt file with ; between items
~Open .txt file with excel type software and have it sort using the ; as delimiters.



VBS AD query script

~Copy the text below into your favorite text editor and save as adquery.vbs file
~Run from command prompt: cscript adquery.vbs > output.txt
~You can remove some of the output fields if you don't need all of the fields in your outpu file.
This section controls the output:
wscript.echo strNTName & ";" & strCanonical & ";" & strDN _
& ";" & strDesc & ";" & strRole & ";" & strManaged _
& ";" & strLocation & ";" & strOS & ";" & strOSVer _
& ";" & strSP & ";" & strCreated & ";" & strChanged

* note that the _ is used as a 'line break' character. It's only needed at the end of a line if the command needs to continue onto the next line down. Remove as necessary.
Option Explicit

Dim objRootDSE, strDNSDomain, adoCommand, adoConnection
Dim strBase, strFilter, strAttributes, strQuery, adoRecordset
Dim strNTName, lngUSN, arrCanonical, strCanonical
Dim strDN, strDesc, strRole, strManaged, strOS, strOSVer
Dim strSP, strLocation, strCreated, strChanged

' Determine DNS domain name.
Set objRootDSE = GetObject("LDAP://RootDSE")
strDNSDomain = objRootDSE.Get("defaultNamingContext")

' Use ADO to search Active Directory.
Set adoCommand = CreateObject("ADODB.Command")
Set adoConnection = CreateObject("ADODB.Connection")
adoConnection.Provider = "ADsDSOObject"
adoConnection.Open "Active Directory Provider"
adoCommand.ActiveConnection = adoConnection

' Search entire domain.
strBase = ""

' Filter on computer object.
strFilter = "(objectCategory=computer)"

' Comma delimited list of attributes.
strAttributes = "sAMAccountName,canonicalName,distinguishedName," _
& "description,machineRole,managedBy,operatingSystem," _
& "location,operatingSystemVersion,operatingSystemServicePack," _
& "whenCreated,whenChanged"

' Construct LDAP syntax query.
strQuery = strBase & ";" & strFilter & ";" & strAttributes & ";subtree"

' Execute the query.
adoCommand.CommandText = strQuery
adoCommand.Properties("Page Size") = 100
adoCommand.Properties("Timeout") = 30
adoCommand.Properties("Cache Results") = False
Set adoRecordset = adoCommand.Execute

' Enumerate the recordset and display values.
Do Until adoRecordset.EOF
strNTName = adoRecordset.Fields("sAMAccountName").Value
arrCanonical = adoRecordset.Fields("canonicalName").Value
strCanonical = arrCanonical(0)
strDN = adoRecordset.Fields("distinguishedName").Value
Dim arrDesc
arrDesc = adoRecordset.Fields("description").Value
If (TypeName(arrDesc) = "Variant()") Then
strDesc = arrDesc(0)
strDesc = ""
End If
strRole = adoRecordset.Fields("machineRole").Value
strManaged = adoRecordset.Fields("managedBy").Value
strLocation = adoRecordset.Fields("location").Value
strOS = adoRecordset.Fields("operatingSystem").Value
strOSVer = adoRecordset.Fields("operatingSystemVersion").Value
strSP = adoRecordset.Fields("operatingSystemServicePack").Value
strCreated = adoRecordset.Fields("whenCreated").Value
strChanged = adoRecordset.Fields("whenChanged").Value
wscript.echo strNTName & ";" & strCanonical & ";" & strDN _
& ";" & strDesc & ";" & strRole & ";" & strManaged _
& ";" & strLocation & ";" & strOS & ";" & strOSVer _
& ";" & strSP & ";" & strCreated & ";" & strChanged

' Clean up.
Set objRootDSE = Nothing
Set adoCommand = Nothing
Set adoConnection = Nothing
Set adoRecordset = Nothing


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

SQL Quick Reference

I was working on some VBS coding yesterday and came across this nice side for sorting out VB command syntax.

SQL Quick Reference


Monday, October 13, 2008

PocketMod: The Free Recyclable Personal Organizer

Here's a cool application that will allow you to customize and print a small compact 'paper / pen' organizer.

Great for those of us who simple just want to write it down.

PocketMod: The Free Recyclable Personal Organizer


12 sided calendar

Ever just get board and want to cut and glue something?? This is a fun way to spend your work 'break' time making a 12 sided desk calendar.

Took me about 10min and makes for fun desktop art.

12 sided calendar


Wednesday, October 08, 2008 {beta}: Save money and the environment printing only what you like.

If you've ever attempted to print a website, you're likly less than impressed at the results.

Check out this web service that will help you print 'just what you like' from any web site. Simply enter the URL and it will load the page and allow you to 'highlight' the sections you want to print.

Check it out!! {beta}: Save money and the environment printing only what you like.


Sunday, October 05, 2008

Geek to Live: Back up Gmail with fetchmail

I'll admit, I'm a Google fanatic. I use most of their services and I've been very happy with it.

It is easy however, to forget that the more I transition/create my digital life solely withing Google, I run the risk of major headache and heartache if they decide to make changes that are not in my favor. Or at a minimum, my email account is lost or unavailable. Neither of which has ever happened and I doubt it will... but it could.

The first thing that comes to mind is the importance of backup. I have learned (the hard way) just how important a good backup is and it seems only natural that we take our email just as serious.

One way to backup/archive your email would be to use a 'locally' installed email application like Thunderbird or Outlook. Turn on your POP3 or IMAP under the settings tab of your gmail and then configure your email client to download your email.

While I have not tried it yet, I ran across a product called Fetchmail which is an open source utility that will retrieve all email via POP3 from your email account.

Checkout this great 'how-to' from the great folks over at

Geek to Live: Back up Gmail with fetchmail


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