Saturday, December 20, 2014

Jetdirect Java Error on Web Interface ( )

Problem: When using your web browser to administer a JetDirect unit, the Java applets seem to load but you get errors and you can't navigate the menus.

Resolution: Uninstall Java from your machine and downgrade to Java 6 HERE. (The x86 version is what you want since most browsers are 32bit.) Remove the Java Update Scheduler from your startup (in the registry) so it doesn't upgrade you again. I recommend Autoruns for this.

Alternate Resolution: Use HP Web JetAdmin to administer the JetDirect box. It's sort of unwieldy in my opinion but it is nice to have in an environment where you have lots of HP printer devices on the network.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Find out when Windows was first installed

EDIT 12/13/16: Under Windows 10 the install date does not reference the initial installation of Windows 10 but the date when the last updated build was installed. :(

For those curious and those tech support people who don't believe it when a customer says they "just" reloaded their OS, this command can be run at the command prompt to tell when Windows was installed:
systeminfo | find /i "install date"

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Remove Metro Tiles Bloatware

I do this on new Windows 8/8.1 computers. It just totally removes all the bloat from the Metro Start tiles except the basic Windows stuff. Open powershell and run these commands:

Get-AppXProvisionedPackage -online | Remove-AppxProvisionedPackage –online
Get-AppXPackage | Remove-AppxPackage

Voila, clean slate!
Add the Metro apps you really want through the Windows Store.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Target Name not Correct with Mapped Drive / Network Share

Problem: You are unable to access a network share or mapped drive and you are given the error that the target name is not correct.

0. Log out of Windows and log back in to make sure your credentials have not become invalid.
1. Make sure your DNS servers are set properly. If you are on a domain, check with your network admin, or use nslookup.
2. Go to a (elevated) command prompt and enter the command ipconfig /flushdns
3. Enter the command netsh interface ip delete arpcache
4. Enter the command nbtstat -RR
5. Restart the computer

The drive or share should now be accessible.

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Kids Computer Running Xubuntu Linux

I have had great success in converting my kids' computer from Windows 7 to Linux, specifically Xubuntu. This is on a Core 2 Duo with 2GB of RAM, a machine that Windows 7 should run fine on, but kept having performance issues. I got to the point where I considered buying them a Chromebox, running Google Chrome OS. Then I thought, why do that when I can load Xubuntu? So I loaded Xubuntu 14.04.1, did the updates, and installed the latest Chrome (not Chromium) so they could watch Netflix. Now they can play all of their Flash games and watch their shows and I never have to worry about them complaining that the computer "is not doing anything."
Of course, I use the computer from time to time and have found the need to make some changes so that I can use it the way I like. I've added LibreOffice, for one thing, as I use spreadsheets all of the time. On the system side I found it beneficial to remove Light Locker and install X-Screensaver (and the extras package) to get screensaver support. Also I installed the hardinfo package so I could view my hardware specs and I installed the gnome-disk-utility package so I could easily view the SMART status of my hard drive. Finally, I installed the gufw package so I could control the ufw firewall from system preferences, and then turned it on. Of course I also loaded Synaptics before doing any of this so I am not repeatedly typing sudo apt-get blah blah blah all the time.
The only thing I miss is pointer trails. Yes I am aware of the alternatives, and no I am absolutely not going to load xeyes (really??). I want pointer trails, and I can't seem to find an X11 mouse theme that features it. Really it should be an option independent of whatever mouse theme you are using.
The one major hiccup in all of this was setting the resolution. I've worked with Xubuntu on multiple computers and it has had a dismal record of properly detecting monitor capabilities when connected via VGA. A series of xrandr commands fixes this but I am really disappointed here. The Display control panel should allow me to activate and select unsupported resolutions.

P.S. Also the package ttf-mscorefonts-installer! Nice to have the Windows fonts for word processing, but also the web looks like I am used to again, especially my blog that uses Georgia.