Thursday, June 29, 2006
When I upgraded to the GX270, it had USB 2.0 but I kept the gaming adapter. I have always had questions about the speed of the 108 Mbps network. It seemed that the gaming adapter kept slowing down and then speeding up. You can't really tell much about the gaming adapter since it just looks like an Ethernet port to the PC.
I had a guy come out and look at running me Cat 5 between the SageTV box and the router but he couldn't get to the top of the wall with the router.
This week we had some tile laid and I realized that the guys that do that also lay carpet. I remembered something that I had seen at Wal-Mart. It was FLAT Cat 5e cable. It came in 3 lengths, 15 ft., 25 ft., and 50 ft. I measured and the 25 ft. would reach from the SageTV box to my closet where my networking stuff is.
The floor guy lifted up the carpet and slipped the cable under it. He had to take a coat hanger and work it under a door threshold but it worked fine. It's so FLAT.
As I thought about blogging on this, I went to the APC site looking for pictures and specifications. I didn't find anything so I just scanned some of the packaging.
PlaceShifter gives you the capability to remotely access your SageTV system. He downloaded the client and I began trying to set it up on my SageTV server. I followed all the directions carefully but it wouldn't work. You have to open a port in your router. I tried it with manual port forwarding and then with UPnP. Neither worked. I opened a support incident with Sage and sent them lots of screen captures. I exchanged e-mails with them for several days.
I finally noticed a thread on their forum on PlaceShifter and described my problem there. I got an answer back from a support person at Sage in 7 minutes! The key was "Oh -- have you restarted SageTV?" The Sage manual kinda talks about this but it's in a different section than where you have to go to setup PlaceShifter.
Anyway, that fixed it and now it works great! I found that you can buy the license for PlaceShifter for $25 from pcalchemy.com. To install the license, there is a link in the SageTV Start menu. You need to have the SageTV server stopped when you do this. You can create as many users as you want but each license gives you 1 concurrent user.
Sage has a server where your SageTV server registers its key and IP address. Then you give the PlaceShifter client that key and it uses the server to get the address of your server. From that point, you pretty much get the same experience as being in your easy chair.
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
I looked again this week at the browser share numbers. Here are the 2 charts side by side:
Firefox has grown about 10% from 29% to 33%. Surprise! Surprise! IE has dropped almost the same amount that Firefox has grown. One interesting thing is that IE 7 is starting to show up.
Then I went over and looked at one of my other sites, desotonet.com. It has a different mix of browsers. Here's a table of its statistics:
Firefox only has 10.6% while IE has 86%. IE 7 shows up here too but with only about half the usage.
Kinda interesting the difference between this blog with a techie audience and desotonet.com with a more mainstream audience.
Sunday, June 11, 2006
The problem was that \\BACKUP\FILES kept disappearing. When it did, even restarting the box didn't remedy it. I'd have to drag the box out of the closet (remember how I like to run systems headless) and open the case and wiggle all the cables. Then it'd go through this "No operating system found" routine until it'd all work again. I'd button it up and back to the closet it'd go.
This got old after the second time so I looked for alternatives. I figured it had something to do with the IDE controllers on the old HP. I had an old ThinkPad 600E and a USB/IDE enclosure but the ThinkPad didn't support USB 2.0. I found this on BuyExtras.com for $12.95 and I had a port replicator for the 600E that had an Ethernet port.
Now the 600E is BACKUP. Unfortunately, I'm still having problems with the Western Digital. I wonder if it is the way I have it jumpered. I hope that's it. It'll run for a day or two and then just disappear.
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
So off I went Googling and came across Microsoft's Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel. Besides the unwieldy name, it's "unsupported" (more on that in a minute).
You can download it from Microsoft here. There's a good write-up on it here including the following readme file.
Readme for Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel v184.108.40.206It may not be the friendliest thing I've found but it works great.
THIS TOOL IS UNSUPPORT BY MICROSOFT PRODUCT SUPPORT SERVICES
- Windows XP Home or Windows XP Professional
1. Copy VCdRom.sys to your %systemroot%\system32\drivers folder.
2. Execute VCdControlTool.exe
3. Click "Driver control"
4. If the "Install Driver" button is available, click it. Navigate to the %systemroot%\system32\drivers folder, select VCdRom.sys, and click Open.
5. Click "Start"
6. Click OK
7. Click "Add Drive" to add a drive to the drive list. Ensure that the drive added is not a local drive. If it is, continue to click "Add Drive" until an unused drive letter is available.
8. Select an unused drive letter from the drive list and click "Mount".
9. Navigate to the image file, select it, and click "OK". UNC naming conventions should not be used, however mapped network drives should be OK.
You may now use the drive letter as if it were a local CD-ROM device. When you are finished you may unmount, stop, and remove the driver from memory using the driver control.
Regarding support, just to show you how deeply it's embedded in Microsoft, look at this Knowledge Base article.
Friday, June 02, 2006
Here's what it looks like:
Interestingly, EarHugger doesn't say much about it. I found this description at 21st-century-goods.com:
The PowerPod features:
- Cord retracts into charger for easy storage
- LED shows connection made to phone
- Charge phone while talking
- Charges cell phones from 4 different power sources
- Standard wall plug, computer USB Port, 9-Volt battery and car cigarette lighter
- Comes with 5 adapters
- Most Nokia, Motorola, palmOne Treo, BlackBerry and Kyocera phones
- Folded size approximately 4" x 3" x 1"
You can buy one here.
Thursday, June 01, 2006
This will let me use iPod stereo headsets to listen to movies on my Treo.
You can order it here.
Travel Sentry Certified Luggage Lock
This will let us lock our luggage and still let the TSA check it.
You can order it here or just drive to Target. We probably need 4 (2 sets of 2).
Kingston Technologies 512MB DDR SDRAM
Hopefully, this will speed up our desktop PC.
You can order it here or drive to CircuitCity. I need 2 of them!
When I got back, I got to looking for a USB SD reader to keep on my keyring. There were several choices that called themselves "keyrings" but they didn't have a loop on them or the loop was on the removable top (don't get me started on that!).
I finally found the I-Rock IR8200 at Newegg.com for $12.99 and $4.99 shipping. Here's what it looks like:
You can't tell from this picture but mentioned in one of the comments was that there was a loop on the swivel cover for the USB plug. I could use that to put it on my keyring.
So I ordered one and it came in today.
It's larger than I hoped (but honestly not larger than I expected). Here's how it compares to my Sandisk Micro USB drive and an SD card: