Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Microsoft Genius: An error occurred while Windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com


.. or time.nist.gov, etc.


To see the error, double the clock in the systray, select the third tab which is labeled 'Internet Time', and try the 'Update Now' tab.
You will get the "An error occurred while Windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com" message. Try a different server, then 'update now'. Still get the error?

I did a little research, and found this long forum post about how this is broken everywhere --

We simply instruct them "to click on the time icon on the desktop,
then click the Internet Time tab,
and then copy the following blue text only - tick.usno.navy.mil -
and next paste it in the Server: Field,
then click on Apply,
then Update Now
and finally OK. Done, no more error messages.
Ok, isn't that what I did? No. (blogger fonts are whack when you paste text in from a webkit browser... I'm going with it).

What's missing? What did I do differently?
APPLY.
This is genius!
After you change the value, you have to click apply to tell microsoft windows you changed it. What should be a obvious intuitive interface is subtly subverted. You change the value to X, and click update now. Doesn't it use that value? It says, "error connecting to X" but it doesn't use that value? Not til you click Apply!
Why don't that have another button that says "ok, I clicked that button" ?

This is a cash cow for microsoft! How many people have called and been charged $59 for this? Whoever thought it up surely got a lot of stock options and probably a promotion to VP, or a special position where they can apply this feature to other parts of the system (send in your examples). An MBA student could do a thesis on this...


Well, I tested on 3 2003 Servers which had this problem,
but the XP system actually worked [but that was probably a bug].
I couldn't test on Vista, because the police took that computer.

... I guess I only read about a third of that post -- it looks like there could be multiple issues, or there are different types of voodoo that can cure it...
I only read about halfway, but I'm tired.
Good thing I have a Mac now.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Mount filesystems over ssh, ftp, etc on OSX with MacFUSE, Macfusion, and a fix for snow leopard

OS X can already mount folders shared by windows machines with smbfs (Finder - Connect to server), or WebDAV natively. With a little more software, you can mount any (*nix) filesystem over ssh or ftp, with macFuse/Fusion.

'FUSE' is something like Filesystem in User SpacE.. that means it doesn't have to be part of the OS directly, most importantly making easy for developers to try something, test it, fix it, and try again really quick, instead of maybe having to compile a whole OS, rebooting, etc. This has been around for a long time on Linux, and a while for Macs too. Just a whole lot easier on a Mac because there's some nice interfaces.

  1. MacFUSE allows you to extend Mac OS X’s native file handling capabilities via 3rd-party file systems. Visit the MacFUSE website for more information.
  2. install, you will need to reboot.
  3. Get Macfusion from http://www.macfusionapp.org/ and install it.
  4. Run it and mount some drives. After it's mounted, you can exit Macfusion.
One problem, it didn't work for me.. because I have the newer 10.6 (snow leopard). The error I got (see the macfusion log viewer) was:

(macfusionAgent, SSHServerFS, norad, 11/20/09 7:35 PM) dyld: could not load inserted library: /Applications/Utilities/Macfusion.app/Contents/PlugIns/sshfs.mfplugin/Contents/Resources/sshnodelay.so

I put mine in Utilities, but you might also see the path
/Applications/Macfusion.app/Contents/PlugIns/sshfs.mfplugin/Contents/Resources/sshnodelay.so

tell it to look for beta versions, check for update, remove an old module, and then it works..


I see my password in the macfusion log viewer -- how to I get rid of that?

Friday, November 13, 2009

This PTF WP_PTF_6102 can not be installed/uninstalled because PortalAdminPwd, W asPassword have not been entered in wkplc.properties.

Full message:


E:\IBM\WebSphere\PortalServer\update>UpdatePortal -fixpack -installDir "E:\
IBM\WebSphere\PortalServer" -fixpackDir "E:\IBM\WebSphere\PortalServer\updat
e\fixpacks" -install -fixpackID WP_PTF_6102 -fixpackDetails
Start of [ UpdatePortal ]
Build 20090714_0130

Verifying installer jar:
[ PortalUpdateInstaller.jar ]

Setting permissions on E:\IBM\WEBSPH~1\PORTAL~1\version
Set encoding: console
Fix pack update specified
Fix pack directory: E:\IBM\WebSphere\PortalServer\update\fixpacks
Installation specified
Fix pack: WP_PTF_6102
Target product directory: E:\IBM\WebSphere\PortalServer
Copyright IBM Corporation 2002, 2008; All rights reserved.
WebSphere Portal Version 6.1
Update Installer Version 1.6.1, Dated 5/1/08

UpdateInstallerArgs.isThisUninstall 0
UpdateInstallerArgs.isThisUninstallforFixpack 1
UpdateInstallerArgs.thisIsFixpackID WP_PTF_6102
WPConfig:findWkplcProperties
what is profileDirectory? e:/IBM/WebSphere/wp_profile
wp_install_root is e:/IBM/WebSphere
WP_PTF_6102Checking for Passwords ...

PortalAdminPwd has not been entered
WasPassword has not been entered


This PTF WP_PTF_6102 can not be installed/uninstalled because PortalAdminPwd, W
asPassword have not been entered in wkplc.properties.
UpdateInstaller.puiReturnCode is 8

End of [ UpdatePortal ]
----------------------------------------
Well, I set the passwords... got a little farther:

UpdateInstallerArgs.isThisUninstall 0
UpdateInstallerArgs.isThisUninstallforFixpack 1
UpdateInstallerArgs.thisIsFixpackID WP_PTF_6102
WPConfig:findWkplcProperties
what is profileDirectory? e:/IBM/WebSphere/wp_profile
wp_install_root is e:/IBM/WebSphere
WP_PTF_6102Checking for Passwords ...




log file in configtrace checking e:/IBM/WebSphere/wp_profile\ConfigEngine\log\Co
nfigTrace.log
Checking the status of all Application Servers
Checking status of server server1
Checking status of server WebSphere_Portal
Checking product features:

[No fix pack detail]

The specified fix pack does not exist
WP_PTF_6102

UpdateInstaller.puiReturnCode is 9

End of [ UpdatePortal ]
.............................................................
okay, maybe i didn't have the file(s) in fixpacks, but a subdirectory
There seemed to be a problem before, so I moved them..

start at 8:50pm ...






Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Because I ran Tor, the police took all my computers.

What is Tor?

"Tor is a network of virtual tunnels that allows people and groups to improve their privacy and security on the Internet."

Tor has been used by people in China to avoid censorship, access news sites, and get around the Great Firewall of China.

People in Iran used Tor during the recent elections to get their word out to the world.

Normal people use Tor, for various reasons. You might want to help the Tor network grow.
(In fact, the very easy-to-use Tor Bundle means you can also run it and/or use it, without understanding anything about how it works.)


Anyway, I had been running a Tor relay node for a few months.

Friday, I was waiting for a package to arrive. I heard a knock on the door, much louder than you would expect from a delivery person. I went down steps (still in my pajamas, as I was working from home), and saw four Men in Blue at my door. I opened it and was told they had a search warrant for my house. They put their battering ram down, and my girlfriend and I were asked to wait outside while they did a preliminary search of the premises.

The search warrant contained as evidence of probable cause one hour-long IRC chat session (showing origination from my IP address) with an undercover NY state trooper and a perp who claimed to have a boy kidnapped and locked up, along with pictures and videos.

From this evidence, they took three of our digital cameras, my two laptops, two desktop computers, and two external harddrives. They could have taken more, but I think it was pretty clear to the six officers that searched our house that we were not involved.

They said they would get to it as soon as possible and return our property, but sometimes the forensics office has a backlog (of up to six months!).


I guess this is what they mean by "Freedom isn't free."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Cisco VPN fails with "Reason 442: Failed to enable Virtual Adapter."

Detailed instructions (and feedback with alternatives) here:
Solution to Reason 442: Failed to Enable Virtual Adapter with Cisco VPN Client on Vista x86
that page says
Update: This problem has been fixed in Cisco VPN Client 5.0.03.0530. Please speak to your Cisco supplier to obtain this new version. When disconnecting from a VPN connection it appears the new client performs these actions for you automatically (it takes around 60 - 90 seconds now to disconnect from the VPN session). I am unable to redistribute the client from this site - please speak to your Cisco supplier / IT Team.
but I am using 5.0.05.0290 and encountered the same.
I just got connection to work (after just getting the lient and the necessary group VPN), so haven't had a chance to see if it recurs, and if the solution works again.

If problem persists, I may try the registry hack too.

Those instructions worked for me,
but I had to reboot as in step 7 of this shortened version of the above instructions.
Others say you have reboot the interface more than once, so perhaps doing that is what fixed it, and not the reboot... no way to tell.