MikeyP.com MikeyP.com

I Hate InstallShield

I can't tell you how many times I've seen InstallShield crash or hang when I try to install or uninstall a program on Windows XP. In many cases, I'll open Process Explorer, kill the hung process, and take a peek at the TEMP directory (in Windows\Temp). I usually find a dozen "temp... read more →

Setting XP Net Connection Priorities

Like most laptops, my ThinkPad X40 has an ethernet port and built-in WiFi. My office at work supports both connection types, so theoretically, when I plug into the ethernet network, the laptop connects via ethernet, and when unplugged, it uses WiFi. However, this was not the case for me. Instead, ... read more →

Putting PowerPoint on a Web Page

I've seen a lot of creative and sometimes hair-brained schemes for publishing PowerPoint files to a web site. But if a timed sequence of static slides works for your presentation, a simple animated GIF is a cheap and easy way to go. The free ImageMagick command line tools make it straightforwa... read more →

Migrating XP with gparted

A few years ago, changing out hardware from underneath a Windows install was a sure way to ruin your OS. So when I received the parts for my new machine this week, I decided to try using various migration tools to get my data from the old machine to the new one. Specifically, I used Microsoft's... read more →

Tunneling VNC Over MyEntunnel

MyEntunnel is a cool app for tunneling SSH via Windows. I use it primarily to proxy IM connections from work to my Linux server at home. Today, with some help from StickyC, I set it up to tunnel VNC . Here are the settings. My VNC server is running on the same Linux box as the SSH server. So in... read more →

Solid Anti-Virus with NOD32

So long McAfee, I'm done with your constant "Upgrade Now!" nag windows, bloated processes, and slow performance. I just bought NOD32 from eset. I did a lot of research on Anti-Virus software, and was surprised to see NOD32 appear at the top of many comparisons. I had never heard of N... read more →

Single Reg Key Sinks Office Updates

For the past 8 months or so, all of the Microsoft Office Security Updates that have come through the Windows Update system have failed to install on my home WinXP machine. I couldn't find any solution to the problem in the Microsoft Knowledge Base, so I've been checking the "don't ... read more →

Replace Explorer with Servant Salamander

I hate Windows Explorer. Back on Windows 3.1, Microsoft included a serviceable GUI clone of the legendary DOS file manager, Norton Commander. But with the advent of Windows 95, the simple, customizable, two-column File Manager was ditched in favor of Mac-style folder windows. This sucks for a myr... read more →

Word With No Distractions

There is some pretty innovative software showing up on the Mac these days. An app that caught my eye today is WriteRoom from Hog Bay Software. WriteRoom is a full-screen text editor with… nothing else. Just a blank screen and your text, no OS distractions. Excellent! Alas, I use Windows an... read more →

Replacing a Sony Vaio Hard Drive

I replaced a failing hard drive in Sony Vaio Z1VA . In retrospect, it was pretty straightforward, but here are some tips that tripped me up: Opening the Z1VA: There are about 13 screws on the bottom of the laptop that need to be removed. 3 are covered by stickers. Before you can remove the plasti... read more →

Burn ISOs with the Windows Resource Kit

I was looking all over the place for a simple command-line ISO burning utility for WinXP. XP's built-in CD burning tools are great, but they can't burn ISOs. I considered using cdrecord, but as versatile as it is, it's also damned complicated. As it turns out, the perfect little ISO-bu... read more →