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May 29, 2009

And the winner is...

Not a bad turnout for my second contest ever here at Bauer-Power! My first sucked royally. I did an Entrecard contest and only had 3 entries. This time I had 43! Perhaps the next contest will have way more than that!

Anyway, I am sure you are wondering who won, well your wait is over! Using this random number generator I found the winner for the contest! Congratulations goes to:

@fictoris


You have until Monday at 2PM Pacific time to DM me with your shipping address, and which T-Shirt and size you want. Click here and take your pick: (Bauer-Power Gear T-Shirts)

Thanks to all who played! Stay tuned for the next contest where you can win a used HP D530 SFF with Bauer-Puntu Linux pre-installed!

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Contest Ends Today at 2PM PDT!

If you have not already done so, get your entry in to win a free T-Shirt from Bauer-Power Gear! If you haven't heard about it, I started a contest at the beginning of the month. Check it out: (http://contest.bauer-power.net)

Entry is simple, follow me on Twitter, and retweet the message I mentioned in that post. If you want an additional entry, subscribe to my RSS feed, and post a link in the comments with a screen shot of Bauer-Power in your RSS reader!

Here are some pictures of some of the T-Shirts you could win:

esxi

Google

HardDrive

reboot

linux

For a full selection of T-Shirts click here: (Bauer-Power T-Shirts)

You have until 1:00PM PDT to get your entries in! I will be announcing the winner at 2:00PM PDT today!

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May 27, 2009

Bauer-Power Episode 10

Can you believe it? Sundance and I have finally made it to episode 10! I bet you wished we would have quit after episode 1, but oh no, we kept going!

In this episode we address some criticism and suggestions about our previous episodes, and also try to draw comparisons between all the different episodes up until now. We also show you where you can create your own awesome free soundboards, as well as cool geeky cube figures to spruce up your office. We also try to take you into a typical day at the help desk and finally discuss the removal of the shout feature from digg.com. Here it is, Episode 10!



As usual, you can view our previous episodes on our Blip.tv channel here: (Bauer-Power TV)

You can add us to iTune here: (Subscribe via iTunes)

I know in the video we mention not finding a cool video editor, but over the weekend I obtained a copy of Adobe Premier Elements 7. Let me tell you what, this bad boy has all of the ease of use of Windows Movie Maker, but way more power! It has multiple audio and video layers, more special effects and transitions, and is all around a way better video editor. I can't wait until we have a better camera, because that with this new software will make one hell of a show! The only thing we will be missing is decent writing!

So how did you like this episode? Got any more CONSTRUCTIVE suggestions or tips? Hit us up in the comments!

May 26, 2009

Picasa 3.1 imports pictures, then they disappear!

My wife loves her some Picasa! Let me tell you. She does everything in it. She does simple photo editing, stores her pics online, and shares them with friends and family. Recently she came upon an issue, and had to call me in for some help.

After our recent mishap with those douche bags at Acer and we got our computer back, we decided to go ahead and put Vista on it. Before sending it back to Acer we were running Windows XP. This is where the problem is.

Picasa You see, Picasa cannot view pictures that are contained in Hidden folders. The problem is that by default our user profiles were hidden. If you browsed into c:\users only the administrator and default profile were there! If you went into folder options, and select the option to view protected Windows system files it would show up.

Here is where another problem was. If you right click the user’s profile folder, the Hidden option was checked and grayed out! That usually means a setting in Group Policy, so I checked all Group Policy Objects and did not see an option for hiding users profiles.

So how are you suppose to remove the hidden folder attribute? I’ll tell you what I did, I dropped to command line (Start > Run > cmd > OK) and did the following:

  1. I changed into the C:\users directory

    c:\>cd \users

  2. I changed the file attributes

    c:\users>attrib -H -S "Wife" /D /S

Of course you will have to change “Wife” for your profile’s name, but after that my wife’s pictures saved in Picasa 3.1 without further issues.

Now I do realize that a lot of "regular" computer folk will be reading this looking for an answer, and may not know their way around the command line. For you guys, I wrote a quick script that you can download to your desktop, and all you have to do is double click on it and follow the prompts. You can download that script here: (Vista Picasa Fix - Right Click and select "Save Target As")

Please note that you have to be an administrator to run it!

I hope this helped you and your Picasa/Vista issues. If not, and you found a different method to fix it let me know what you did in the comments!

May 25, 2009

Getting Adobe Air To Work In Ubuntu 9.04 64 Bit

Today I have a good post for you! I recently decided to make Ubuntu 9.04 64 bit edition my operating system for my work computer. I figured why not, the dual monitors thing works pretty good in Jaunty Jackelope without too much finagling.

So I go ahead and install it. Now I am finally using a 64 bit operating system for work! So what's the problem? Well, on my Windows XP installation I had Adobe Air installed so I could use my favorite Twitter client Twhirl. The problem is that Adobe air isn't really made for 64 bit operating systems quite yet, so i had to install some dependencies. Here comes yet another problem.

Most of the tutorials I found mentioned getting the getlibs-all.deb package from a site called boundlesssupremacy.com, but it looks like that site is gone now. I did finally find it though which is good news for you! Also, in some of the tutorials, they talk about some other dependencies you need. I decided to put them all in a nice script for easy installation! Follow these simple instructions and you'll have Adobe Air running on Ubuntu 9.04 64 bit in no time!

  1. Download my shell script: air-lib.sh
  2. Download Adobe Air from here: http://get.adobe.com/air
  3. Open a terminal and cd into the directory where you downloaded the items from 1 and 2
  4. Make the two items executable

    >chmod +x air-lib.sh
    >chmod +x AdobeAIRInstaller.bin


  5. Run my script

    >sudo ./air-lib.sh

  6. Install Adobe Air

    >sudo ./AdobeAIRInstaller.bin

After that you are done, and you should be able to install and run your Adobe Air programs like Twhirl and Tweedeck without issues.

Are you using Ubuntu 9.04 64 Bit? What applications are you having problems with? Got any tips or suggestions? Perhaps some blog posts of your own? Post your links in the comments!

May 22, 2009

How To Update Your Dell Mini 9 Hackintosh to 10.5.7

After lots of trial and error I am finally here! Finally at the latest version of Mac OSX Leopard 10.5.7 running on my Dell Mini 9 netbook. How did I finally do it? Surprisingly, it was pretty easy. All you have to do is RTFM!

One thing I had to do different since I first mentioned my Hackintosh on Bauer-Power Episode 9 was I HAD to use the retail version of OSX. There just was no upgrading from 10.5.2 Kalyway to 10.5.7 on my Dell Mini 9. The big problem with the retail version? It’s almost 8GB! You have to put that S.O.B. on a Double Layer DVD!

This article assumes you already have OSX installed on your Mini. If you haven’t done that yet, read this Gismodo tutorial: (Gismodo Hackintosh)

So you are ready to install 10.5.7 huh? If you do it without this tutorial, you will boot up to a white screen with a bunch of black slashes and a mouse pointer, so you better listen up!

Preparing for the Upgrade

  1. Download  DellEFI 1.2a5
  2. Extract the files onto a USB drive
  3. Download the Combo Update


Upgrading

  1. Run the Combo Update (downloaded in Step 3 above)
  2. Let the Mini reboot
  3. Boot into SAFE MODE (DellEFI 1.1 use "-x" at the prompt |DellEFI1.2 hold SHIFT)
  4. After booting into Safe Mode, run the DellEFI  1.2a5 from your USB drive
  5. You want to do a "Custom" DellEFI – Remove your custom dsdt.aml file
  6. Reboot
  7. Boot into SAFE MODE (DellEFI 1.1 use "-x" at the prompt |DellEFI1.2 hold SHIFT)
  8. After booting into Safe Mode, run the DellEFI  1.2a5 from your USB drive
  9. You want to do a "Custom" DellEFI -- reinstall the Mini 9 Extensions and recreate custom dsdt.aml file
  10. Reboot


Post Upgrade

  1. Re-run the AboutThisMac.pkg
  2. Run XSlimmer or Monolingual

You should now be at 10.5.7! Special thanks goes to bmcclure937 who posted these instructions on the MyDellMini forums here: (10.5.7 On Dell Mini)

Here is a screenshot of my Hackintosh Dell Mini 9:

Hackintosh 10.5.7

After the upgrade I busted out my trusty Carbon Copy Cloner program I mentioned on Wednesday, and created a ghost of my drive. There was just too much work to get me where I am at!

How about your Hackintosh? Were you able to update to 10.5.7? What kind of special finagling did you have to do? Let me know in the comments!

May 21, 2009

Possibly The Most Bad Ass Flash Drive EVER

One of my coworkers forwarded me an article from Engadget, that if you drilled down originally came from Nerd Approved talking about possibly the worlds coolest USB thumb drive! You see, this USB flash drive is modeled after the legendary Ravage Decepticon Transformer!

For those of you that don’t speak geek, or 6 year old boy from the 1980’s, Ravage was one of the cassette tapes that used to accompany Soundwave, who could transform into a ghetto blaster. Ravage was one of Soundwave’s many minions of destructions.

From Wikipedia:

The stealthy, shadowy Ravage operates best alone. A creature of the night, Ravage performs most of his actions in the darkness, both literally and figuratively — there are times when he will cloak himself in such shadow and subterfuge that not even his fellow Decepticons know where he is or what he's doing ... but since whatever he's up to is sure to be bad news for the Autobots, they don't really mind. Ravage is aloof, but his craftiness and deadliness mean that his actions command respect from his comrades.

Since Casette tapes are so far out of date, the more modern versions would most likely be a USB thumb drive! That is exactly what BigBadToyStore did! They turned Ravage into a firggin’ USB flash drive! Check it out!

transforming-flash-drive

This thumb drive is not available until September, but you can pre-order it now for $42.99!

If I had one I would promptly encrypt it with Truecrypt. Something that badass is just screaming to be made into a hacker thumb drive! By the way, if you haven't checked out the recent Transformers films directed by Michael Bay, you are truly missing out on some awesome Autobot v.s. Decepticon action on the big screen.

May 20, 2009

Free Ghost/Clone Program For OSX Leopard

Hey all, as you know from the last video episode of Bauer-Power, I decided to do the Hackintosh thing with my Dell Mini 9 netbook. Everything installed fine, and all of the hardware works. The only problem? I am stuck on OSX version 10.5.2. The latest version of course is 10.5.7.

No problem right? Not exactly, you see I have the infamous Kalyway hacked version, and the combo updates from Apple kill the install. I have been trying various tutorials, but so far no joy.

So to avoid re-installing from scratch each time I hose my install after an attempted update, I decided I would get everything installed and working for version 10.5.2, and ghost the mother f^#ker! Then I can try all of the various update methods, and if I pooch the install, I can revert back to my image!

Hackintosh I found a cool free tool for creating backup ghost/clone images of OSX. It is called Carbon Copy Cloner. Here is a list of features from their website:

  • Complete, bootable backups
  • Simple interface for indicating exactly what you want to back up
  • Restore using the same process used for backup
  • Backups are non-proprietary, so you can browse them or use them with Migration Assistant
  • Fast, incremental backups copy only the items that have changed since the last backup
  • Archival backup archives items that have been deleted from the source
  • Support for block-level disk-to-disk clones
  • Support for backing up across the network to another Macintosh
  • Back up to hard drives or to disk images
  • Schedule backup tasks on an hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly basis, or you can indicate that a backup task should run when the backup device is attached (e.g. an iPod). You don't even need to be logged in for your backups to occur!
  • CCC recognizes iPods specifically, allowing time for the iPod:iTunes synchronization to complete
  • Built-in software update feature notifies you when updates are available

This utility isn’t very good for large corporate deployments of OSX, but then again most companies don’t use OSX for most workstations ;-P

This software is VERY good if you are a home Mac user though, and wish to have a fresh disk image of your hard drive, or regularly scheduled backups.

Any of you Mac guru’s know of any other free disk cloning tools for OSX? Care to share? Post you links in the comments. Also, if you know of a good way to update Kalyway to 10.5.7 I want to see a link to that too!

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May 19, 2009

Migrate Printers From Windows 2003 to Windows 2008 Server

At my day job we are currently in the mist of migrating our Windows 2003 environment slowly into a Windows 2008 environment. One of the first places we are moving to 2008 is on our file and print servers in the field. Lucky me, I got to configure the first Windows 2008 file and print server in one of our nearby remote offices!

One of the first things I needed to do after installing the server, and powering it on was to migrate all of the printers from the old 2003 server in that office over to the new 2008 server that was replacing it. In Windows 200 and Windows 2003 I would have used the Printmig utility, but that has gone by the wayside in 2008. Now, it is even easier to migrate printers!

So how about it? Do you want to know how to do it? Easy!

  1. Click on Server Manager
  2. Scroll down to Roles Summary and click on Add Roles
  3. Check the box for Print Services and follow the wizard to install
  4. After it is installed, Click Start > Administrative Tools > Print Management
  5. Expand the tree, then right click on Print Servers and click on Add/Remove Servers
  6. Enter the name of the print server you want to migrate the printers off of and select Add to List, then click Apply
  7. Right Click on that Printer in the tree and select Export Printers to a File and save that file on your desktop
  8. After the export is complete, right click on your new server in the tree
  9. Select Import Printer from a File, and select the export from your desktop
  10. Follow the wizard and you are done!
It couldn't be more easy! Now the old Printmig was similar to that, but this feature is built right in! No downloading, no fussing! Just a simple export, import and boom! DONE!

One thing you have to note though is that, according to Technet, you cannot migrate printers from 2000 servers or older. For that you will have to use Printmig to a Windows 2003 server first, then on over to a Windows 2008 server.

How many of you have migrations like this coming up? How many of you have already migrated? Let us know in the comments!

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May 18, 2009

Bauer-Power Episode 9

That is right! Two in a mutha friggin' row! Sundance and I had such a good experience getting up at the crack of dawn to head on into the office a little early to shoot an episode, we decided to do it again! I am thinking this may turn into a weekly thing :-)

This episode is AWESOME if I do say so myself! In this episode I share with all of you my new Hackintosh! That's right I took my new Dell Mini 9 and installed OSX on it! After we talk about that, Sundance gives us his impressions of Windows 7, then I review "Deadliest Warrior" which is one of the geekiest/coolest shows on television, and finally Sundance tells us where to get free web development programming! Here it is, Episode 9!



You can catch our previous episodes on our Blip.tv channel here: (Bauer-Power on Blip)

Got an iPod or iPhone? Add our videos to iTunes here: (Subscribe via iTunes)

So what did you think? We really do want to hear your thoughts and ideas about the show. What kind of stuff do you want to see? Hit us up in the comments with your feedback!

May 15, 2009

Setting Up A Minimal Ubuntu Desktop

Once again my old security professor from college comes at me with some very useful information. This time in the form of an awesome Linux tip. He forwarded me a link to a post from Lifehacker who themselves mentioned a post in the Ubuntu Forums from a guy calling himself TheShiv.

TheShiv talked about how with the default Ubuntu installation there were a lot of pre-installed applications that he did not use that took up a lot of resources, and ultimately slowed the computer down more than it needed to. Fed up with that he wrote a quick script to use after doing an install using Ubuntu Server edition or the Minimal CD. With both of those, Ubuntu installs with just the terminal.

After your install you can wget TheShiv's script which I made available here: (Mini.sh)

For example, after your install from the terminal do the following:



sudo apt-get update
wget http://ftp.bauer-power.net/misc/Ubuntu_Minimal/Mini.sh
chmod +x Mini.sh
sudo ./Mini.sh


Now sit back, grab some coffee and wait for your Minimal Ubuntu install to be pulled down from the repositories to settle nicely on your hard drive!

After installing all the minimal packages, now you can pull down only what you need as far as applications, and you don't have any extras your don't. Doing this type of install saved TheShiv approximately 260MB of typical memory usage. I think I will be doing this for all future releases of Bauer-Puntu ;-)

What kind of things do you do to optimize your Ubuntu (Or other distro) installation? Do you have special scripts of your own? Let us know in the comments!

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May 14, 2009

Awesome Soundboards

Yesterday I had a great idea, and with all great ideas in this world it came to me in a vision while I was telling Number Two who he works for. That vision was to have an online soundboard so we can play audio clips from anywhere that we record our IPTV show and fun clips for you all to play with.

So I did some hunting, and I mean some hardcore zombie hunting and I found that in a related story there was is SoundBoard.com. Now this site is just wicked awesome on an Epic Level. First and most importantly it’s Free!! so just sign up for an account and start creating your own soundboard. You can use clips that other people have uploaded and add them to your own soundboard or upload your own clips.

I’m currently working on putting together a Bauer-Power soundboard and currently have put together a Mr EpicFail soundboard which will be displayed below and contains clips from SNL, Beavis and Butthead, Mortal Kombat and more.

Here are some other cool soundboards I found that you may think is cool.

Sean Connery - Celebrity Jeopardy
http://soundboard.com/sb/Hammond_Sean_Connery.aspx

SNL Commercial Parodies
http://soundboard.com/sb/SNL_Commercial_Spoofs.aspx

Final Fantasy
http://soundboard.com/sb/Final_Fantasy_soundboard.aspx

8-bit style songs
http://soundboard.com/sb/8_bit_style_songs.aspx

Will Ferrell as Robert Goulet
http://soundboard.com/sb/Will_Ferrell_Robert_Goule.aspx



Sammich or Die! - Mr. EpicFail

May 13, 2009

Cool Video Converters

I like making videos. No, not those kind of videos you perv! No, I mean random videos. Video of my family, videos for the blog, and just fun videos in general. I like it so much that I set up a second blog just for those random videos here: (My Random Videos)

My video editor of choice? Windows Movie Maker! Why not? It’s free, and built into Windows right? The only problem is that it only accepts certain formats. One of the formats it doesn’t accept is MOV format. Well, my little Kodak Easy Share only records in MOV format. So how am I supposed to edit it with Movie Maker? That is where a good video converter comes in.

My favorite free converters of choice come from Pazera Software. They have almost any type of video converter you would ever need. Here is a list of some of their conversion tools:

Another cool thing about Pazera’s converters is that they do not require installation. They are self running packages, so you could throw them on a USB stick, and take them wherever you need videos converted!

The one I use, obviously, is the MOV to AVI converter so I can edit my videos in Windows Movie Maker. The conversion is quick, and flawless. You can even customize the output settings for resolution, audio, and video encoding, etc. You can even do batches of videos all at once!

In conclusion, if you are looking for a tool to convert your videos from one format to another, check out Pazera’s tools. They are free, they are intuitive and they simply work!

May 12, 2009

Setting Up Nessus in Windows 7

My old college professor made a video for his website NicholsonSecurity.com. Besides the video, he has lots of cool security stuff up there. It really is a great resource for network security.

Anyway, back to this video he made. Earlier this year he made a video on how to setup Nessus on your network for free. He did it using Windows 7 Beta.

If you don't know what Nessus is, here is a description from Wikipedia:

In computer security, Nessus is a proprietary comprehensive vulnerability scanning software. It is free of charge for personal use in a non-enterprise environment. Its goal is to detect potential vulnerabilities on the tested systems

As you will see installation of Nessus in Windows is fairly simple. Take a look:





Pretty simple right? Do you use Nessus already? What other security/auditing tools do you use regularly in your network? Let us know in the comments!


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May 11, 2009

Bauer-Power Episode 8

Happy Monday readers! I have got something to get your week started out right. Something to jump-start your weekly craving for all things geeky! Yes, Sundance and I got together last Friday extra early to film Episode 8 of Bauer-Power!

In this episode we return to using my little Kodak MX1063 which sucks, but at least it is better than the Logitech webcam we used in episode 7. One of these days I will get an HD camera, but it won't be for a while. I just bought a Dell Mini 9, and I'd like to pay that off before making another big purchase.

So back on track. With this new episode, my wife Mary makes an appearance by announcing the show, Sundance talks about our two front page stories on Digg, I talk about the Twitter contest I am running right now, Mr. EpicFail rants about work-at-home schemes, I introduce Bauer-Puntu 9.04, and Sundance introduces us to Tversity. Without further ado, here is episode 8!




If you want to watch episode 7 it is available on our Blip.tv channel here: (Bauer-Power TV)

If you want to watch our older episodes, you can catch them on our old Veoh channel here: (Veoh Channel)

How did you like this episode? What kind of stuff do you want to see in these shows? We want you feedback! Hit us up in the comments.

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May 8, 2009

Bauer-Puntu 9.04 – Now With More Hackability!

Sorry it took so long, but it is finally out! The latest and quite possibly the LAST edition of Bauer-Puntu linux available. I say the last because it is rather a pain in the arse to produce this. Not to mention my wife hates when I work on projects like this because it takes my time away from the family.

I am pretty excited about this release though. I have been playing with it for the last few days. I installed mine with the ext4 format, and I am simply loving the performance, and fast boot times!

Anyway, enough about that! So what is new in the version? Of course you have all the awesomeness from the latest Ubuntu release including:

  • GNOME 2.26Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackelope
  • X.Org server 1.6
  • Wacom tablet hotplugging
  • New style for notifications
  • Boot performance
  • Linux kernel 2.6.28
  • Ext4 filesystem support

With that I have pre-installed some really cool hacking, and security tools. My old security teacher in College once said my distro didn’t have enough security tools. This time I went ahead and put a few more on there. Some of the tools I pre-installed are:

  • kismettux.bauer-power
  • aircrack-ng
  • Metasploit Framework 3.2
  • Wireshark
  • packETH
  • SQLNinja
  • Fast-Track
  • ettercap-ng
  • nmap
  • nessus
  • netcat
  • hping2
  • John The Ripper
  • dsniff
  • scapy
  • p0f
  • ntop
  • ike-scan

I think that is it. There may be one or two that I am missing (It was late when I was installing them all).

Besides the security tools, I have also pre-installed Adobe Flash, and Adobe Air. With Adobe Air, I have also Pre-installed the Twhirl Twitter client for you Twitter freaks like me!

Since I packed in all of the extra tools, I tried my damnedest to make it fit on a CD. Well, I just couldn’t do it. I even uninstalled all of the games, and office programs (You will have to re-install those later). With everything that is on it, the Live iso is just over 700MB. Because of that I thought the best thing to do would be to make a Live USB image available, so that is what I did. You can still download the iso if you want to install Bauer-Puntu in VMWare or something, but if you are just using it as a Live CD, then it is best to put on a USB stick anyway for mobility.

You can download the iso here: (Bauer-Puntu 9.04 ISO)

You can download the USB img here: (Bauer-Puntu 9.04 USB)

To install the USB image, follow the instructions for installing the Ubuntu NBR release to USB here: (NBR to USB)

NOTE: The Win32 Disk Imager utility may cause the Live USB not to login. I recommend using the flashnul command line utility instead if you are using Windows to make your bootable live USB stick.

Of course all of this comes without the shit brown that plagues Ubuntu!

Here are the screen shots!

uSplash

Usplash

gdm-login

GDM Login

Desktop

Desktop

installer

Installer 1

installer2

Installer 2

Metasploit

Metasploit Framework 3.2

Like I said above. This most likely will be my last release. That is, unless there is a high demand for it. The last release was downloaded a few thousand times, so who knows. Maybe there will be demand.

If you use, or have used Bauer-Puntu in the past, let me know how you like it. I want your feedback and suggestions as well. Hit me up in the comments!

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May 7, 2009

Cost Effective Offsite Backup For Home

After my episode with Acer a few weeks back, I decided I should have a better backup strategy for home. I mean, I did have stuff saved in other places, so there wasn’t too much data I lost in that, but a better, offsite strategy for home became apparent.

One of the senior Systems Engineers at my company suggested a product to me that he had been using at home for a few years that gave him unlimited offsite storage for only $4.95 per month. I decided I needed to check that out.

The service is called Mozy. You may have heard of it. They have two products that they offer. One for home users, and one for business. For business use, you of course will have to pay quite a bit more, but for home users this is still probably one of the cheapest you will find.

Mozy For it to work, you have to download their client and install it on your workstation. You select the files and directories you want backed up, you decide the type of encryption to use (Blowfish or AES) and you configure your backup schedule.

Once configured everything works in the background, and your stuff is securely backed up off site to your cloud storage. Now if your house burns down… or an evil computer company wipes your drive to fix a motherboard issue, you have nothing to worry about.

I have been using it for a while now, and so far it seems pretty cool. One draw back I have found is that the initial backup takes forever! I am backing up nearly 300GB of data, and it has been going for a few weeks.

My co-worker said that is normal for Mozy, and after the initial backup all other backups are quick as they essentially only copy changes after that. I have pre-paid for a year, so I will see how it goes. If you decide to buy them do a Google search for Mozy Coupons. I did, and I saved 20% at checkout.

This isn’t a paid review, so if you know of a better service than Mozy I am all ears. Better still, if you know of a free service with plenty of storage and automated backups that would be the best! Hit me up in the comments.

May 6, 2009

Capturing Webcam Video in Ubuntu

Last night I received my new Dell Mini 9 netbook in the mail, and I immediately began playing with it. First thing I did was install Windows XP and Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix in a dual boot setup. The second thing I did was pimp out my new netbook with a Powered By Ubuntu Sticker :-P

After that I started poking around in Ubuntu NBR 9.04. A few weeks ago I was looking into software in Ubuntu that I could use to capture video from my webcam. I wasn’t successful finding anything, and decided to capture my webcam stuff in Windows XP. Since my netbook came with a webcam like many do, I wanted to see what was installed to handle that in the netbook version of Ubuntu. That answer is a program called Cheese.

Here is a description of Cheese from the project website:

Cheese uses your webcam to take photos and videos, applies fancy special effects and lets you share the fun with others. It was written as part of Google's 2007 Summer of Code lead by daniel g. siegel and mentored by Raphaël Slinckx. Under the hood, Cheese uses GStreamer to apply fancy effects to photos and videos. With Cheese it is easy to take photos of you, your friends, pets or whatever you want and share them with others. After a success of the Summer of Code, the development continued and we still are looking for people with nice ideas and patches ;)

I have to say that Cheese worked fairly well, especially for the chintzy 1.3MP camera built in. My only gripes were that it recorded to .ogv format, the resolution had to be set at 320x240 in order to get the video to work. (By default the resolution was set at 1024x768), and finally after recording, the audio and video didn’t sync correctly. Here is my test video:

As you can see, it started off okay, then slowly turned into a foreign Japanese flick looking thing where the audio didn’t sync with my mouth. That was even after I ran the video through Windows Movie Maker to try to sync the sound up!

Have any of you had the sound synching problem with Cheese in Ubuntu? Were you able to fix it? If so how? Hit me up in the comments.

May 5, 2009

Once Again, Bauer-Power is Mobile Friendly

It seems like forever ago I was using a standard, built in blogger template for Bauer-Power. Yuck right? Well, say what you want about the built in templates, but one good thing about them is that they show up well on mobile devices. I once blogged about that here: (Bauer-Power Mobile Old)

Since I changed to this custom template, things have changed. I don’t know about you but when I used to browse to Bauer-Power on my Blackberry I wanted to punch myself in the face! It looked terrible!

I decided to look for a way to change that without having to do too much work. That is when I found MoFuse! MoFuse will take your existing site, and let you transform it into something that is a little easier on the eyes for Mobile users.

They also allow you to do custom domains with them. Mine for instance is http://m.bauer-power.net.

Here is a screen shot of what it looks like on a standard mobile phone. Click on the picture to view an interactive demo:

Phone-preview

That is not all folks! For you iPhone users, they have made a special customization for you! Introducing Bauer-Power for iPhone! To check it out, just visit http://m.bauer-power.net/iphone. For you non iPhone users, Click the picture below to play with the interactive iPhone demo!



Pretty cool right? Well, if you ever forget, there is also a button in the lower right of the blog that you can click on from your mobile phone to take you to the mobile site.

How many of you surf the web from your mobile phones? What kinds of phones do you use? Let us know in the comments.

May 4, 2009

Windows Server Update Services 3.0 Install Error

The other day I was getting ready to do my weekly approvals for Windows updates using our WSUS servers. Just as I was getting ready to do that one of the downstream servers went down in one of our remote offices. I called the local site liaison and asked her to power it back on. When It came back up, I remoted in to see if there was anything wrong. That is when I discovered it… WSUS had been uninstalled! WTF?!?!

Okay, it was time to calm down. I checked the logs and didn’t see anything about who or why WSUS was uninstalled. That also wasn’t my immediate concern though. The immediate concern was that I had some approvals to make, and patches to deploy. No server, no patches. no patches and my systems would be vulnerable.

No, I had to re-install Windows Server Update Services 3.0 so that particular region could get their updates. No problem right? Wrong, when I tried to re-install WSUS I got the following error:

Windows Server Update Services 3.0
There is a problem with this WIndows Installer package. A program run as part of the setup did not finish as expected. Contact your support personnel or package vendor.

Windows Server Update Services That was disappointing. I did a search for that error online, and didn’t find out too much. I decided to check the install logs and found the following error code in there:

Error 0x80070643

Once again, I searched online and didn’t find out much except a related article saying that 0x80070643 had something to do with a problem installing MSDE 2000. How could that be though right? WSUS 3.0 doesn’t use MSDE.

I decided to double check Add and Remove Programs. Sure enough, there was no installation of MSDE, however I did find something else. A little application called Windows Internal Database. I hadn’t heard of that, so once again I hit up Google. The first article was from Wikipedia. This is an excerpt from Wikipedia:

Windows Internal Database (codenamed WYukon, sometimes referred to as SQL Server Embedded Edition) is a variant of SQL Server Express 2005 that is included with Windows Server 2008, and is included with other free Microsoft products released after 2007 that require an SQL Server database backend. Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and Windows Server Update Services 3.0 both include Windows Internal Database, which can be used as an alternative to using a retail edition of SQL Server.

A ha! there was the culprit! I decided to uninstall Windows Internal Database and reboot the server. After the reboot, WSUS re-installed without any issues at all! Booya!

Now I just have to find out why/how it got uninstalled in the first place…

May 1, 2009

Ubuntu 9.04 Wireless On A Dell Latitude D610

Like millions of other anxious Ubuntu enthusiasts, I downloaded the latest version of Ubuntu (9.04 Jaunty Jackelope) and decided to install it on my laptops at home. On one of my laptops, I got the idea for a quick blog post. The motivation? I ran into some problems with wireless on my Dell Latitude D610 laptop. I thought it was a little strange because in the last two or three versions of Ubuntu I didn't have a problem with wireless on my Dell D610.

I am sure it was just an oversight on Ubuntu's part, but it appears that they forgot to include the proper wireless drivers for the Dell D610. Never fear, Bauer-Power is here! Well, Bauer-Power and the power of ndiswrapper. For those not in the know, ndiswapper is a Linux utility to load Windows drivers when a Linux version isn't available.

It seems like we have everything we need right? Not exactly. It turns out that ndiswrapper isn't installed by default in Ubuntu 9.04. That sort of sucks because we are trying to connect to the Internet via wireless right? Oh well, suck it up and walk your fat-ass across the room and plug your laptop into the router with a CAT6 cable, and lets get your wireless working.

After you plug in your laptop install ndiswrapper from the terminal:

>sudo apt-get update
>sudo apt-get install ndiswrapper-common ndiswrapper-utils-1.9


Now that is installed, you need the Windows drivers. You can get them here: (D610 Wireless)

After you download the tarball, right click on it and select 'Extract Here'. Now in a terminal CD into the DellD610 folder that you just extracted from the tarball. Install time using ndiswrapper!

>sudo ndiswrapper -i bcmwl5.inf (Installs the driver)
>sudo ndiswrapper -l (Checks to see if the driver installed)
>sudo ndiswrapper -m (Creates the wlan0 alias)
>sudo modprobe ndiswrapper (Loads the new driver)


After that the driver is installed, but is still not quite activated. To activate the driver click on System> Administration> Hardware Drivers:



Activate the new driver:



Your wireless should now be working. If it doesn't work straight away, try de-activating the driver, the re-activating the driver again. I had to do that a couple of times before I was able to see all of the wireless networks around me.

Did something similar to this happen on your laptop in the new realease of Ubuntu? Were you able to get your wireless to work? Lets hear about your troubleshooting steps in the comments!






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