Dec 102013

If you’ve ever searched for things like

  • Internet Explorer automatically opens and closes
  • How to repair or reinstall Internet Explorer
  • IE opens, flashes then closes immediately

then you know how frustrating it can be to have Windows automatic updates install the latest version of MSIE only to have it not work the next day;

I had this happen to me today and I spent nearly 90 minutes searching for solutions, trying various things solutions and repairing my Windows install.

I attempted:

The System File Checker (run within an Administrative CMD window) turned out to be my solution. A number of %windir%\system32 files were corrupted during the automatic upgrade of MSIE. SFC found and fixed all files (without the need to reboot into safe mode, etc.)

Unfortunately, if I’d been paying attention, I could have prevented this using MSIE >> About.

Apr 142013


Apr 132013

Frequently I find a need to do something with Windows, and VBScript is a flexible and fairly powerful language capable of doing all sorts of useful things. Granted there is JavaScript and PowerShell; and I should learn JavaScript more since there are several utilities that Avaya (formerly Nortel) has developed to collect data on systems and being able to write my own utilities to make myself more effective is a desirable skill.

I was writing a not-work-related utility this weekend and used several web sources to refresh my memory on how various VBScript functions, statements and operators worked. Here’s a list of some of those links:

Dim myArray(10)

myArray(0) = “Nothing to see, move along.”

Erase myArray

Mid( myString, 3, len(myString)-2 )

Replace( myString, “Find me”, “Replace me”, 1, -1)

Dim re

Set re = New RegExp

re.Pattern = “^We hold these truths.*”

re.IgnoreCase = true

re.Test( myString )

Dim re

Set re = New RegExp

re.Pattern = “These are the droids we”

re.IgnoreCase = true

myJediMindTrick = re.Replace(“These are the droids we are looking for”, “These are not the droids you”)

Dim myString

Dim myObject

Dim myInteger

myString = Empty

myObject = Nothing

myInteger = Null

‘ Although you could also use Empty on the integer variable.

UBound(myArray) returns the total number array elements (regardless of element values). isEmpty(myArray) returns false on arrays even if all array elements are empty.

Quick tip:

Const vbQuote = “”””

myString = vbQuote & “Quickly” & vbQuote & ” add quotation marks to any string.”

If Not booleanDroidsWeAreLookingFor Then

Call continueLooking

End if

On Error Resume Next

On Error Goto 0

I looked this up and discovered this really doesn’t do anything that I really want to happen. It would be nice if VBScript had a little bit more powerful error throwing/catching… sadly, it does not.

Sep 142012 Forum – View topic – Disable Core Parking Windows 7 Tweak may improve performance.

In short:

  • Go to Regedit
  • Find this key:- ” 0cc5b647-c1df-4637-891a-dec35c318583 “
  • Within this key, there is a value called: ” ValueMax “
  • This value represents the % number of cores the system will park – the default 100% ie: all Cores are potentially park-able
  • Change the value from 64 (hex; which is 100 in decimal) to 0 so the ” ValueMin ” and ” ValueMax ” are both zero
  • You will have to find the key a few times and repeat the process for each time it is found – the number of instances will depend on the number of power profiles in your system
  • Do a full shutdown and power-off and cold-re-start

I did this and one of the games I’m playing right now got a 20fps improvement: It used to fluctuate between 40-60fps, but after disabling Core Parking it went to a solid 60fps.

Jul 262012

Drag and Drop Not Working in Windows 7


Left-click and drag on any file fails.

Can still left-click and left-double-click, but click-and-drag fails.


Left-click and hit escape.



Jul 262012

Windows Internet Explorer Command-Line Options

Windows Explorer Command-Line Options

How do I create shutdown shortcuts in Microsoft Windows 7?

  • Shutdown Computer
    • Shutdown.exe -s -t 00
  • Restart Computer
    • Shutdown.exe -r -t 00
  • Lock Workstation
    • Rundll32.exe User32.dll,LockWorkStation
  • Hibernate Computer
    • rundll32.exe PowrProf.dll,SetSuspendState
  • Sleep Computer
    • rundll32.exe PowrProf.dll,SetSuspendState 0,1,0

How To Use the Remote Shutdown Tool to Shut Down and Restart a Computer in Windows 2000


Jul 262012

The following registry key changes the number of maximum connections per server. The default values are:

HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\

Changing these values to the following will increase the number of connections that can be made per server at one time. For pages which have more than 10 objects, this can speed page download/rendering. It won’t have any affect on pages which have 10 or fewer objects (images, scripts, css attachments), but in todays age with lots of graphics and js,css,etc attachments, it should provide a moderate increase in performance.

HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\

Apr 272012

In the theme of new PC’s, I had to migrate my Windows virtual machines over to the new work laptop when the old one died. Then I had to figure out how to get access to them when previously the VM didn’t prompt for login credentials (it just automatically logged in).

Turns out that enabling integration features will cause your VM image to fail to logon unless your VM machine’s login credentials are the same as your primary OS.

Apr 262012

WinHlp32.exe is required to display 32-bit Help files that have the “.hlp” file name extension. To view .hlp files on Windows 7, you need to install this application.

It doesn’t get simpler than that. Occasionally I upgrade computers. Recently, my work PC died and I had to install all my apps onto a new PC. Along with that joy came the joy of remembering where to find the WinHlp32.exe was located on Microsoft’s website.

Note to self for the next PC replacement/upgrade I have to do.

Update: 2013aug20 – The Microsoft URL is still valid, but the update is now called Windows6.1-KB917607-x64.msu (there is an x86 version available if you need it for some reason.)

Apr 252012

The Netgear PS-110 (discontinued) Wired Print Server has been my friend for around 10 years now. I’d originally purchased it to make my HP LaserJet 2100 printer available to my roommate (rather than sharing the printer through Windows sharing. Which required that my PC be on, and blah blah.) I’d purchased it in an era of Windows 98/ME/2000.

Today, the thing still works like a champ with Windows 7, but I occasionally need a reminder of how to configure the thing. Thankfully, Netgear still operates it’s discontinued support FAQs and they have an knowledgebase article on how to manually set up a printer.

(Replicated here, in case they ever take it down… which assumes my trusty little PS110 will keep plugging along.)

  1. Click on Start, then Control Panel, then Printers and Faxes. Right click on the Printer and select Properties.
  2. On the printer properties window, select Ports tab and click on Add Port
  3. Select Standard TCP/IP Port and click on New Port.   
  4. This will bring up the Add Standard TCP/IP Printer Port Wizard, click Next
  5. In the field for Printer Name or IP Address, type the IP address of the print server and click Next.
    Note: You may check other computer’s printer port to verify the IP address of the print server.
  6. Select Custom and click Settings button.
  7. Under Protocol field, select LPR. For Queue Name, type L1 depending on what print server port is the printer connected to.
    Note: if you’re print server that has 2 or more printer ports, like WGPS606, type L and the number of the printer port used. Example printer is connected to port 2 then you must use L2.
  8. Click Ok, then Next, and Finish.