Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Opera... you too?

Today is a bad day.. really really bad day.. I didn't expect this from Opera.. at least.. if Google does it.. it is in their nature... but Opera you too?
Microsoft has done the same thing in early 90s but they changed and they paid a lot of money for what they did earlier.
What happened is, I got an "There is a new version of Opera available for download." message, and as a die hard fan of Opera, I immediately click on Download and once it downloaded, I started installation. I love my existing settings and customizations in Opera, so I always upgrade rather than clean install. And as usual I was about to click on Next when I noticed a small, pre-checked check box at bottom of the installer. And my instincts told me.... HEY!!!! STOP!!!... and I looked at it.. the check box read ... Make Opera Default Browser..and I was like : Oh my lord.. did Microsoft(Old days) took over or what? or it is Google now? Well.. for those who didn't get it.. that check box will make Opera my default browser.. and yes.. I am no idiot who doesn't understand flexibility of IE.. most of the sites I look at looks the BEST on IE.. and most of the good sites works fine.. with IE.. no problem so far...while Opera.. is the best browser.. for the sites which normal users might not want to give a look.. for me it works.. but Opera as my default browser.. NO NO.. BIG NO!!!... anyways.. I survived the attack(This is a kindda browser replacement attack.. aahh I coined a new term... :P)
This was definitely a dirty move.. and well thought and.. yes.. I can tell it was no accident.. Opera did the same the Microsoft was used to do earlier. But that was a different time.. but now? NO NO!!!! Opera.. 5 cents down.. you guys are.. so next time you install Opera..just be careful.. they are not as good as they were used to be.. anymore..

Google.. does it again...

I dunno what kind of idiot some one has to be to push an update to a product.. which just changes the version number... I wish I could be that idiot.. and then.. google would have hired me as a Product Manager(Phew.. thank god.. I am smart.. and I won't have to be that guy..)
According to this blog as well as few other trusted resources I just came to know, Google pushed a product update on iPhone that changes the version number... YA... just the version number.. that's it..

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Killing a Process running on Remote Computer(The batch file way..)

This morning when I came to office, I had a set of tasks which needed to be completed ASAP. My current engagement requires me to work on customer server via RDP. Now RDP has an interesting behavior, in certain cases if the server has a limited resources, it will simply refuse to allow RDP access. And unfortunately, it happened to me today. One of my colleague ran a time-consuming, resource-hungry custom code over the weekend so we can work smoothly during the weekdays, however the application could not complete its work during the weekend and was still running and consuming whatever resources were available and in turn caused a DoS (Denial Of Service). I thought to use VBScript/WMI to kill the remote process as I had the name of the process to be killed and have had used it in past effectively. I started working with the script but, I felt it will take too much time to figure out the script that will help me so I decided to search on my favorite search engine for easier and faster options. Within a few minutes I got the pointers to use tasklist.exe and taskkill.exe. I killed the process manually and easily got my access restored. However at end of the day, spending some time one this and making a batch file will come handy as we run into this situation more often. So I spent few minutes in notepad and here is the batch file that I got. This batch file is not polished but should get the job done in time of needs. And as usual I don't take any responsibility of any kind if you use this script and get into some trouble. So use it at your own risk...

@ECHO OFF
@ECHO WARNING : This script will forcefully kill the process and will not ask for confirmation before killing the process.

SET MESSAGE=
SET SYSTEMNAME=
SET USERNAME=
SET PASSWORD=
SET PID=

SET /P MESSAGE=Press any key to continue...

SET /P SYSTEMNAME=Enter target computer name or IP :
SET /P USERNAME=Enter User Name (domain\username) :
SET /P PASSWORD=Enter Password :

@ECHO Please wait while we get the list of processes...

TASKLIST.EXE /S %SYSTEMNAME% /U %USERNAME% /P %PASSWORD%

SET /P PID=Enter PID(Process ID) of the process you want to kill :

TASKKILL.EXE /F /S %SYSTEMNAME% /U %USERNAME% /P %PASSWORD% /PID %PID%

SET /P MESSAGE=Press any key to continue...

Generic Serializer-Deserializer

Around one and half year back, I was handling an interesting situation. There were few different systems sending in XML messages, and my component had to accept the message, interpret it and take appropriate actions.

It was easy till I came to know about XML message and its elements and alternate messages. The possibilities were unlimited, and it sounded stupid to hand code/hard code XML elements. Rather than that the solution was designed so that we converted XML -> XSD -> CS. After few changes made here and there to fine tune the CS files with XML, we faced another challenge, we had to serialize/deserialize incoming/outgoing messages. After few minutes of R&D I could pull out this. I've listed the method signature and minor code implementation. It is so simple that you can easily get it working in few minutes.

public static string Serialize<T>(
T data
)
{

//Create the Serializer

XmlSerializer xmlSerializer = new XmlSerializer(typeof(T));

//Use the serializer we have just created and serialize the object.

}

the same goes with the Deserializer

public static T Deserialize<T>(
string serializedData
)
{

//check whether the incoming data is not a null string
if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(serializedData))
return default(T); //This can be controversial, so handle with care and as per your requirements, in certain cases you can return null as well, kindly let me know if you have anything that can improvise this code

//create a serializer
XmlSerializer xmlSerializer = new XmlSerializer(typeof(T));

//Use the deserializer we have just created and deserialize the object.

}

I must thank my friend Sidhartha http://IamJunk.spaces.live.com, as he helped me a lot to enhance the code. I've not published the whole code, in case you need it, drop me an email/comment. I will be more than happy to help you out.

All In One Entity for CRM 4.0

Sometimes back I was doing a research on a script(It is coming soon.. just wait and watch...) and that script required me to try all the CRM datatypes one by one on the form. And trust me, it was a pretty boring job to create the element on a CRM form and then check compatibility of that script with it. Anyway, I thought I can help out my friends out there just in case they face the similar situation. So here is a SkyDrive link :

https://cid-b6a90e5b5092759c.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/BlogStore/AllInOneEntity.zip
If you find that I've missed out something, kindly drop me a note. Thanks in advance.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Google Launches Themes for Gmail

Well.. Google's flagship beta(err... hmm.. ya.. for a while..or forever?) product has just got another feature(well.. you can add 31 features a month and remove 17 of them if you are in beta.. ain't it?). It is themes...(Oh and I was thinking they will get me free land line/cell calling from Gmail browser interface :D). Anyways.. I tried.. one and it looks good.. :D.. check out the screenshot below..

My Gmail Inbox...after applying Terminal theme

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Download Yahoo! messenger 9 setup from Yahoo!

I wanted to install Y!'s new messenger.. version 9... (oh it is beautiful I must say.. check out the screenshot..) on one of the Virtual PC... and I didn't want to connect to Internet for the sake of installing Y!.. so .. after looking here and there.. somewhere... I found that Y! keeps its installation images under http://download.yimg.com/ycs/msg/dl/msgr9/, This path doesn't have directory browsing enabled so you will not find anything there... however if you want to do an offline installation .. all you have to do is.. to click here

New UI of Y! Messenger 9. Click on the image to see the larger version.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

You have seen Notepad... XmlPad.. and now... LINQpad..

This one has been resting in my To-Blog list for a long time. It was not that I didn't want to but since last 40 days for some reasons I was away from work and I could not post this one. We all know how important role LINQ has been playing for .Net developers who deal with SQL as well as other Data Query Interfaces. LINQ is not one stop shop for all(as of now) but it has its advantages. Anyways, this post is not to sing fan-song about LINQ but to make you guys aware of a very handy tool that can help you to be the big boss when it comes to LINQ Development.
LINQpad is a little software and more importantly free one(No.. its not open source you freetard..). It supports LINQ to SQL, LINQ to Objects and LINQ to XML. And yes it also works as a code snippet IDE. It can execute any C# 3.0 or VB9 expression or statement block. One more feature for lazy people out there is LINQpad doesn't need to be installed.. it is "Portable' by design..so what are you waiting for go.. ahead... and download it from here.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Voice or Video Chat? Sign in to Gmail

Gmail's official blog has this announcement shouting it loud that Gmail now has Voice and Video chat(http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2008/11/say-hello-to-gmail-voice-and-video-chat.html).

They are providing Voice and Video chat from within Gmail. I was thinking they would have made a breakthrough Flash Web Application as Flash natively supports webcam and audio/video streaming. However Google has done something odd(at least.. it looks odd to me.. seems the innovation drive is slowing down here). Last year Google acquired a Sweden based company : Marratech. Marratech was an e-meeting startup and now Google has come up with the plugin that seems the direct result of take over(source : http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/11/11/google-adds-voice-and-video-chat-to-gmail/).

So instead of a flash application, this one is a .Net Clickonce application(PLEASE CORRECT ME, IF I AM WRONG). I detest running any application on my laptop/desktop that comes from Google so I didn't allow it to run. But when it was being downloaded, the dialogbox was the famous.. clickonce installer dialogbox. anyways..sooner or later some one from my circle will install it and I will come to know what it is all about.

Google has been pretty quick when it comes to rolling out features to its userbase lately, as a result you can see the voice and video option in menu in the screenshot below.
Also as amazing as it sounds and looks, I am not sure how well it will do in India sub-continent. Though bandwidth is comparatively better than previous years and we have decent processing power as well RAM to handle the overhead, I wonder will it be sufficient for this kind of usage or not?... only time will tell.. till then... bbbyye...

Don't be shocked if you see something like this instead of this blog


I've been getting messages from friends that they are not able to access my blog. Instead of my blog they are getting some biblecollegeonline shit. I am trying to figure it out what is wrong but as of now I am helpless. It looks like DNS Cache Poisoning or something else.. I apologize for any inconvenience caused and all I can ask is to bear with it while blogger staff is working on it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Windows 7 for Developers

This guide describes features and includes vivid screenshots from the pre-Beta version released at PDC. Build applications on a solid foundation, enable richer application experiences, and integrate the best of Windows and Web services.

Recorded sessions of PDC 2008 available for download

I know how important it is to be at a PDC.. however...it is expensive... and not everybody here can attend. No worries..though.. all the recorded sessions and PPTXs are here. Download high quality videos to see what they mean by PDC...

Microsoft Virtual TechDays is back!

Microsoft Virtual TechDays provides an opportunity to the IT Pro community to dive deep into the latest offerings from Microsoft - SQL Server 2008, Microsoft System Center, Windows Vista, Internet Explorer 8, Essential Business Server, Visio & Microsoft Office communication server. During the 2-day event, Microsoft Experts will conduct 17 LIVE training sessions on how to harness the power and possibilities of these products.
Register today! for the Virtual TechDays to be held on November 25th & 26th, 2008.

You will be asked for your live id and also once you are logged in you can download recorded sessions and presentations... go ahead... Enjoy!!!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Visual Studio 2010 and .Net Framework 4.0

One of my friend has been constantly bugging me about Visual Studio 2010.. all I've to say to him till date ..was.. dude.. I don't know when they are gonna release it.. but anyways.. few days back I ran into this newsletter... which clearly mentioned that a CTP of VS2010 is available on Microsoft Downloads.
So... here it goes...
Just check it out.. I am damn sure.. most of you will not dare to download it.. but.. hey.. this is meant for developers who love to stay ahead in the game..so... where do you stand?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Microsoft Announces DreamSpark India

Here comes a really GREAT NEWS for Indian Students... I mean.. those Indian Students who loves Microsoft Technologies. Do you remember earlier this year, there was a post on Skynet about Microsoft's new initiative called Microsoft DreamSpark? It was limited to some 11 countries initially, and I was wondering when Indian students will get the benefits and now the wait is over, Microsoft launched DreamSparkIndia.com.

As described by Microsoft, Microsoft DreamSpark™ is a program that provides no-cost access to Microsoft designer and development tools for verified students around the world, to support and advance their learning and skills through technical design, technology, math, science and engineering activities. This program equips tomorrow's developers with the professional tools to inspire and create today.

I suggest to go through the site once, and if you read this on or before 5th November, 2008 02.00 PM IST then you might like to watch the live broadcast of Bill Gates speech from New Delhi, India. Click Here to register.

There is a lot more to DreamSpark but we will check it out ... laterz... till then.. bbye...

Monday, September 08, 2008

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 SDK Update - v4.0.6 is out

Only difference in the description of this kit is, it doesn't mention that Report Writers Guide will be released with next update so you can hope that this one already includes one.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Embed Image in CRM 4.0 templates

In my current engagement, there was a requirement to embed images in email template. Now, as it is very well known that you can easily achieve it by copy pasting the HTML to CRM's Rich Text Editor. Most of the times it works fine. But then if it goes normal all the times I won't have to blog about it right? so.. here it goes..

In our case, we had a sample word document which had an image on top and some formatted text. As soon as this came to me, I fired up CRM's web UI and created a blank template. I created an HTML file out of word document. After opening the html file and copying/pasting, it worked fine and template got saved without any issue. Once the template was in place, I tried to apply it to an email activity. It worked fine, I could see the formatted text, the image on top and the layout was also preserved. Happily I clicked on Save button and.... whoooooshhh... it was gone.. the image was gone, everything else was there, but the image was gone. So there I was, the only thing I needed to close today to have a nice weekend was this email template fix. Also one of my colleague was working on this and he did a lot of research eliminating many other possibilities why it won't work. After few more minutes, I made a blank html page, added a nice Windows Live Logo and repeated the copy/paste on the same email template. Once it was done, I applied to the same email and voila.. it worked. So it was pretty clear that it was all due to the HTML that we were using for the template.

I always keep IE Dev Toolbar available, so I fired it up, and clicked on Validate -> HTML. The online HTML validator showed me there were some minor issues with the HTML. I corrected them and removed word HTML tags in which my IMG tag was wrapped. After this I followed the process copy/paste and test and .. there it was a .. working email template with an image.

Also it was very clear that we will have to find out a structured process to do it as there will be more templates coming soon. I might come up with an automation process, if you are interested keep watching this blog or drop me an email, if you need it urgently.
Update : This trick also works with KB Article. Just copy and paste from any Web Page to get images in your KB Article. However, it doesn't work with notes. Notes doesn't have Rich Text capabilities.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

CRM 3.0 - Hiding the Delete Button Hack

My day to day job revolves around supported solutions on CRM 4.0 and Microsoft .Net however as we all know customers some times are demanding and asks for features which doesn't come under umbrella of supportability. And as a solution provider we have to meet it by hook or crook.

In this case, I came across a mail on one of our WW Community. The problem statement was pretty clear : The customer wanted to hide delete button that appears on the CRM GridView for each and every entity(maybe selected entities too). Now they wanted the users to have rights to delete CRM records so we can't just take away their rights(Yeah.. that's the first thing that came to my mind...). But they wanted to do it via some custom applications not from the CRM Web UI. After doing some R&D I found that it can be achieved via the steps mentioned in next paragraph. I would like to declare that this code/method is NOT AT ALL supported by CRM Product group. This is just to demo that certain feature can be disabled in CRM without affecting roles.

1. Locate and back up loader.aspx from CRMWeb folder.
2. Open loader.aspx in Visual Studio or any text editor of your choice.
3. At the closure of the first script tag, copy-paste the following code

<!--/******Disable Delete Button Hack BEGIN*********/-->
<script language="JavaScript" type="text/javascript">
function HideDeleteButton()
{
//Check whether the iframe is completely loaded or not
if(document.getElementById("stage").readyState == "complete")
{
try
{
//Those menu items are part of mnuBar1 span, so we will get the reference of mnuBar1 first
//and then all the SPAN elements(represents individual menu items)
var spanElements = document.frames[2].document.getElementById("mnuBar1").getElementsByTagName("SPAN");

//iterate through the menu items and check whether the title is Delete or not
//if yes, this is the one we are looking for, set its display to none and break the loop
for(var i = 0; i <= spanElements.length; i++)
{
try
{
if(spanElements[i].title == "Delete")
{
spanElements[i].style.display = "none";
break;
}
}
catch(e){continue;}//continue in case of error
}
}
catch(e){}//ignore any other error
}
}
</script>
<!--/******Disable Delete Button Hack END*********/-->

4. There are frameset definitions at the end of the page, change
<frame name="stage" scrolling="yes" src="<%HttpUtility.HtmlAttributeEncode(homePageUrl, Response.Output);%>"></frame>
to
<frame name="stage" scrolling="yes" src="<%HttpUtility.HtmlAttributeEncode(homePageUrl, Response.Output);%>" onreadystatechange="HideDeleteButton()"></frame>
5. Test by opening up the workplace.

This script might have other side effects which I've not fully explored yet so use it at your own risk.


Friday, August 22, 2008

Microsoft Releases Photosynth

I just got this mail from one of my colleague mentioning Microsoft Photosynth has just got released http://photosynth.net/default.aspx..

About Photosynth
Imagine being able to share the places and things you love using the cinematic quality of a movie, the control of a video game, and the mind-blowing detail of the real world. With nothing more than a bunch of photos, Photosynth creates an amazing new experience.


I found it ... really... sexy.. have a look... and dont ask me about the requirements.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Developer Ramp up Kit for Dynamics CRM 4.0

I just got this news about a Dev Ramp up kit on Dynamics CRM 4.0. As a .Net Developer, I know that it can be sometimes, tough to work with CRM. I am sure this will help a lot of Developers around the globe to start looking at CRM 4.0 development from different perspective.

You can access the Kit online on MSDN at : http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc720132.aspx

Summary of the Kit according to MSDN :
This kit is for .NET based developers who want to ramp up and build on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform. Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 uses familiar components such as Web Service endpoints, Windows Workflow Foundation, SSRS reporting, and more; making it a general purpose platform for any line-of-business applications. Developers can use their existing .NET skills to take advantage of various features of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform. This kit drills into the details of such development and explains how developers can connect, extend, and embed with the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform. It includes presentations, hands-on labs, and a VPC environment for practicing. This content was delivered earlier as part of the Metro Early Adopter initiative and the video recordings of the ramp-up presentations are included as well.

Familiarity with the .NET Framework, Microsoft Visual C#, Jscript, Microsoft SQL Server and general Web development is recommended.


You can find more info about the kit at :
http://blogs.msdn.com/girishr/archive/2008/07/06/developer-ramp-up-kit-for-dynamics-crm-4-0.aspx

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

I am back...

I know, as of now my blog has a very small user base, very few people has visited this blog so far. And mostly are my friends.. hopefully.. guys n gals who will keep visiting me no matter how rubbish my post goes.. anyways... I was in somewhat tight corner and almost stopped blogging as well as stopped actively contributing to my group at : http://groups.google.com/group/skynet
Anyways, coming to the point, I believe my current deliverables plus personal life is in a lot more stable position than before and I can start blogging again.. so here it goes.. and trust me.. I am not gonna hold back...[That message was for freetards... My Windows-Based Friends not need to worry about it.. as long as IE 8 works fine..]
Also in the last one month, I did work on the following..
- Installed Windows Server 2008 and I must say.. it is so damn easy..my 12 year old cousin could do it..
- Cleared my two MCTS 2005 exams[namely Windows and Web Based client development]
- Explored Office Communication Server's Status Message mechanism
- Worked a lot and a lot with CRM 4.0, CrmService and Metadata Service
- Tried to take a shot at exam 30-631: Customization and Configuration for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 and failed miserably...curse you...non calibrated exams..and curse me to .. not to prepare very well...
- And a lot.. as it comes to mind.. I will update this post...

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Google Launches Google Mail Labs

Sometimes I wonder, how Interesting things these guys keep doing[as they are not looking at real world business problems sometimes :P and also forgets to close the security loopholes, they must get plenty of free time]. Anyways, coming to the point I just saw this birght red link appearing in the top-left nav bar as shown
Here you can read more about this new feature[eh eh... ]. Basically it adds a new tab in your Gmail Settings page that let's you choose various features that Gmail Team memeber have deveoped[I believe some of them are done using 20% free time they get per week]. I found some of them pretty neat while some of them, are.. well let's say .. not that pretty-neat. But overall it is a nice idea to have your user base to do the beta-testing of upcoming features. Here is a screenshot of the few of the features.





Thursday, May 15, 2008

CRM SDK 4.0.4 is out...

If you are in CRM 4.0 Development, a must get for you is CRM SDK. You can get the latest version from here : http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=82E632A7-FAF9-41E0-8EC1-A2662AAE9DFB&displaylang=en.

Overview

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Software Development Kit (SDK) is for developers, system customizers, and report writers.
It contains all new information about creating plug-ins, working with custom workflow activities, using the new Web services, using new data management features, and much more.

This SDK contains information for developers writing server side code, custom business logic, integration modules, workflow assemblies, and more. It provides an architectural overview of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, the entity model, security model, and Web services. Sample code and walkthroughs guide you through the new features.

The SDK also contains information for developers customizing the Web client or Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Microsoft Office Outlook, including scripting, integration of custom Web pages, sample code, and a detailed user interface style guide.

Look for regular updates to this SDK. Future releases will include the ISV Guide and Report Writers Guide.
[31-05-2008]
PS : An update has been released(4.0.5). You can download it from here : http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=82E632A7-FAF9-41E0-8EC1-A2662AAE9DFB&displaylang=en

Monday, May 12, 2008

ASP.Net Interview Question Links - Part I

As promised earlier, here are some of the interview questions I was used to refer during my early stages when I started hunting for another job i.e. after around 2+ years with ESS. I am not saying these will get you the job for sure but if you have prepared these and related questions you will be atleast make much more sense when you answer any given ASP.Net Interview.

So here it goes[Links are not in specific order] :
- The one that helped winning a specific interview : http://www.techinterviews.com/?p=193\
Points to remember
- cross-check answers with your friends, colleagues and other sources
- Do not forget to refer to the comments other readers might have made, these comments sometimes leads you to the right answer or more set of questions and maybe better interview material
- do not rely answers as they are given
- just make sure that you have got the question right, and come up with an answer in your own language, so when you answer you will sound genuine. Not like the copy cat[Aren't you?]
Discussion on this blog-post is welcome at http://groups.google.com/group/skynet. If you have any specific request you can use comments feature provided.
Happy Job Hunting... :)

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Installing Microsoft Windows XP SP3 Made Easy

I will go step-by-step and will assume you have a clean/Legal XP SP2 Installed. I am very proud as my current installation has not failed in last 1.5+ years. It is not only that XP SP2 is really good in its own ways, there are tricks I've learnt over the years that helps me to keep my OS safe otherwise, my old friends, knows, every 6 months I had to re-install OS no matter which one is taken for example.[Soon you will find a post on that..OS I've installed and my experience with them].
So here it starts, Installing Microsoft Windows XP SP3 Made Easy for everyone... not just for noobs.. :)

  1. Get the stand alone installer to keep the whole game simple. I know it is easy for some people to get SP3 via windows update, I think, from an average Indian's Internet access view point, we better get the stand alone installer.
    Google as well as DUMB search engine on
    Microsoft Download[When I got it, it was ranked 20405 in popularity :P] will not get you this one easily, so here is the direct link.
    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=5b33b5a8-5e76-401f-be08-1e1555d4f3d4&DisplayLang=en

    Also maybe in future you can just use the file name or other details mentioned here from the download page.

    File Name: WindowsXP-KB936929-SP3-x86-ENU.exe
    Version: 1 1
    Knowledge Base (KB) Articles: KB936929
    Date Published: 5/6/2008
    Language:English
    Download Size: 316.4 MB

  2. While the file is being downloaded, I suggest you start taking backup of your files, in unfortunate event of update failure, you might just love me that I suggested you to take this step.

  3. Once the file is downloaded, I would suggest it to move it to your fastest disk drive - it can be the SATA drive you have or the portable HDD or anything that has more than 2 GB of free space to keep things fast[My installation started at 01.28 AM and ended at 01.45 AM with 512MB RAM on T2050 @ 1.60GHz]

  4. Close all unnecessary programs and services[stopping services can be a serious problem so as of now if you are not a PRO I would suggest to leave them intact].

  5. Remove all the removable drives, not the one on which you have the SP3 ofcourse. I would suggest to use a clean HDD and system i.e. Anti-Virus and Anti-Spyware check should have been performed. Also remove any bootable disks from optical drives.

  6. Disable the all the Network Adapters and switch off the WLAN if it is on. This is not a mandatory step and it is upto you to follow it or not. However DO NOT forget that you might drop all the protection you have in place in the very next step and you will be vulnerable to any kind of attack... any time.

  7. Shut down your Anti-Virus, Anti-Spyware and Firewall. Yes, I am not drunk this is to not to hinder with SP installation and to improve performance.

  8. If you are using a laptop, please make sure you are plugged in and also have enough backup power in case of power loss. The same goes for PC, a decent UPS will do the trick for the PC users though.

  9. Launch WindowsXP-KB936929-SP3-x86-ENU.exe, if you have downloaded the file from Internet, Windows XP, as a protection measure, might ask you 2-3 times to confirm whether you want to run this file or not. Click on yes without any fear, if something is gonna go wrong..anyways.. it will go wrong.. neither me..nor you can do anything about it.. ) so chill...

  10. It will start extracting the files, most probably to the best drive/volume[In terms of performance].

  11. Once the extraction is complete, follow the On-Screen instructions to start the SP Installation.

  12. It is a pretty simple thing to do though, internally it takes backup of the files to the location which you mentioned at the startup and then updates the system files followed by a system reboot.

  13. Yes, you must reboot the system once you have applied the update.

  14. Start your Anti-Virus, Anti-Spyware and Firewall and then re-attach the removable media as well as enable the network adapters.

  15. And hoorrrray....we are done...

  16. If you face any problem during the setup...you know where you have to look forward to right? aahh..common... not to http://metrix.blogspot.com ... go to Microsoft Support..huh..

Its time guyz : Getting ready for Interviews

May... it has all begun, by mid June you will start getting the idea what is next for you, as students will get the results for their final year and already employed people might start looking at other opportunities outside of their current organizations. so isn't it the right time to start something on Interviews and how to crack them?
I am in process to publish Interview material, Important links, Resume formats and more here as well as in my group [http://groups.google.co.in/group/skynet].
I must thank some of Ex-ESS team members as they have helped me a lot to prepare me for interviews. BTW, many times I get carried away for my previous organization[ESS], 'cause there we had an awesome work culture. Something difficult to find in India, and super difficult to find in Gujarat. As a Gujju, I do understand, by nature, Gujjus are many times money-minded, so much that they want their employees to do 'All Work' and they really don't understand the old sayin' "All Work and No Play makes Jack a Dull Boy". Anywayz, coming to the point, such a freedom and brotherhood we enjoyed, that almost every team member helped each other to crack interview.
And many times, ESS team members were used to go for interviews just for fun. And for a good time we never lost any of the team member. There were two sound reasons for it though, 1.Work Environment, 2. Competitive Pay. I will for sure post on ESS in future, but as of now let me stop here.
I am gonna start posting stuff on here as well as in my group, however I would request you guys n gals to actively provide feedback and improve the material I post here including resume formats, general interview questions, company specific interview questions, HR Cracking style, Personality development stuff, Soft Skills development guide, Practical Sessions and more.

Expecting a lot of input from your side...here I stop...:)

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Bad Bad Bad News...Microsoft withdraws its hostile bid

As a shocking news, I got to read this article, Ballmer's e-mail to staff on Yahoo, I was so damn happy when the announcement was made about the hostile bid, I was jumpin... dancin.. rollin.. on floor.. and then.. suddenly...thud.. something hit my face..and that's the e-mail that says... to Y!.. from Steve Ballmer... withdrawing the bid. I feel bad..really bad..the whole world is drowning and I don't see any rescue boat around..aah.. it is so sad...and..yet another thunk..comes and.. I think..hey.. it isn't that bad. It seems good infact. Though I really would have embraced the idea of Microhoo with love and all the warm feelings, however here is another side which other experts have identified about the deal.
In this takeover, one thing I was really afraid of was.. cultural clash, and trust me guys n gals, I've seen what happens when you do this kindda fusion, apart from other issues you have to manage people and their perception. Also many people will feel insecure and might just quit and many of brand loyals will also walk out, uprooting one of the major agenda Microsoft has to get hold of engineering talents of Y!. Also I was wondering, the money involved is so much, Microsoft can take down so many other small and profitable companies[When Wallstreet opens on Monday... what will happen to Y!'s stock? I am worried ..my friends..]. Anywayz, things are different now, for Y! it is must to survive and do something to turn around the scenario they are going through. 'cause if they can't do it, I can see, sooner or later. Microsoft or someone else, will feast on Y! and we all will say... RIP..Amen..:D

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bang Bang.. on Google..

Hey ..all.. it's been a while since I've banged Google.. n that's not fair..right guys? so here it is in a short n sweet style.... the overview..
- Orkut, the No. 1 Social Networking site in India, has gone crazy with Google's OpenSocial [yey.. I love Orkut and you can find me over here]. I was thinking.... now what shall I call Orkut.... FaceKut? Or Orbook? :D
- Gmail's crazy AJAX patches are now over the edge, I dunno which one makes my IE 7 frown upon, but lately... I am getting lots of Operation Aborted errors.
For a change, Google has started acting on some bugs, not like old days when it took them years to fix the simple things like this, the one I mentioned here[Gmail-Gtalk April Fool?] is fixed but I dunno whether this is causing the Operation Aborted errors or not?

Monday, April 21, 2008

Yet Another Gmail Bug surfaces

It seems Google is facing tough time making its email service truly world class. While it is being marketed and bundled with Google Apps, for biggies, Gmail still is a big question as a reliable product. It some times just don't know how to get along with the right things. anyways this time it was some crazy thing with their spam filter[Did you notice, lately few emails are landing to your inbox] which started rejecting some legitimate PayPal service emails resulting in Denial Of Service for customers. It stopped users from getting confirmation emails, setup new A/Cs or reset password on PayPal.
According to officials, the problem affected a very limited number of users, poor those guys on whose servers the patches got deployed for initial testing I suppose. Anyways the issue was closed immediately and customers are happy again now...but for how long? till the next patch comes...right? :D

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Blogger's made a poo poo..

Recently, a funny.. ..kindda..video found on YouTube by bloggers and they started doing it..front n back and every other angle they could manage on Microsoft and how uber-shit this video is and how dumb the maker of the videos are and all sort of blog-dung you can imagine. Check out the video here.
and as it turns out to be as, the video was an internal spoof made by Microsoft and somehow it managed to reach the web and this holy-crap disaster for Gizmodo[Internal Microsoft Vista Video is as Painful as Videos Get], Engadget [Microsoft burns our eyes with Vista promo video], CrunchGear [Don't shoot the messenger: Microsoft internal promo video about Windows Vista is hard to watch.] Personally I have been using and endorsing Engadget since a long time... and now I feel like a jack-*** yeah yeah.. I know..but you know..what makes me laugh? How dumb these guys are who believed that this Video can be a promo Video for Vista? As we all know, Microsoft is one of the best player when it comes to market the stuff[Freetards needs to learn a lot but lately I've seen a creative momvement in that arena too], anybody remember the sexy...Office XP advert of old times? :D

Google is ready to penetrate deep...The Web..dude..The Web..

According to this blog post at Official Google Webmaster central, Google has been exploring the idea to bypass HTML forms and it seems they have done significant progress on the front... so now Google will be able to...search beyond the forms i.e. if a form is looking for some simple answers Google will be able to bypass it and go to the next page, by evaluating the form and filling in random data. I wonder though...how they will bypass CAPTCHA? The blog post has mentioned a lot many sweet things about how they respect robots.txt[A standard file, which is configured by webadmin to tell web crawlers like googlebot, to direct what to search and what not to search on their site]. And somehow.. that tells me... is it just limited to text or they do crawl it and then sell it to the highest bidder? :P..Think..man..Think..

Did gmail made you pull your hair on 16th April?

Lately.. Gmail has been making news around the globe, let it be the news in middle east due to some caching issue, one guy saw 30+ other people's mailbox, or the scripting attacks but this time they have some thing new.. Gmail's IMAP services faced some technical glitches and lot of customers[ofcourse Google Apps, don't worry..none of the enterprise class customers:D]

one of the angry customer said,
"A huge, if not number one selling point for moving one of our companies over to Google Apps was Google's robust network!" complained
one user. "Now that we have migrated over, it seems we are abused children who do not deserve an explanation for why the service we pay for is taken offline. Perhaps it is time to find a new e-mail host."

Now this might stop jumping monkey of SalesForce.com?.. hopefully.. as they are the latest clowns in the
google apps bandwagon.

Find the whole story :
http://www.news.com/8301-10784_3-9920715-7.htm

Like Gmail? Join the team then...

Yes interesting..isn't it.. a product that has been the part of your life since a long time and here is the golden opportunity to join the team.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

After MacBook Air, Vista Gets Hacked

Few days back in my post I mentioned that MacBook Air was the first one, of the three competing notebooks at CanSecWest security conference in Vancouver, now the bad news has come... :D not so bad though.. I had this feeling that this is what is gonna happen... poor Vista put its defense down when using some clever JavaScript was applied on a page having a Flash movie. Anywayz, I hope that soon the patches will come out and yes, if you are interested in more you know where to go...right...? here.. ofcourse..

Orkut enhances the Search with Auto Complete

I don't know how many of Orkut users use the nice Search that they provide on top right corner. I use it a lot, to find old friends, sometime a community and sometimes just to see how good it is.. :D today, I saw something nice has happened to the good ol' search. When I started typing, it came to life[common..its just a code..] and started suggesting me possible results of the Search. It was smart enough to look in to my friends list first and get me their details, and show in a nice overlay[check the pic below]. I really liked the concept, very simple but effective. Anywayz, that's all as of now. And yeah, if you wanna read more about it, here is the official blog entry, check it out : http://en.blog.orkut.com/2008/03/continued-search-for-better-search-in.html


Thursday, April 10, 2008

Microsoft Discloses 14,000 Pages of Coding Secrets

Surprisingly(Not so much though after EU's stand against M$), Microsoft has disclosed 14K pages of documentation that describes underlying protocols for Office 2007, MOSS 2007 and Exchange Server 2007. According to news, this is just a first phase of 3 phased plan. Microsoft will gather feedback from the developer community till June, and then the final version of the documentation will be published.

Google Announces Google App Engine

On the FAQ Page they have answered the question, What is Google App Engine?
Google App Engine lets you run your web applications on Google's infrastructure. App Engine applications are easy to build, easy to maintain, and easy to scale as your traffic and data storage needs grow. With App Engine, there are no servers to maintain: You just upload your application, and it's ready to serve your users.
You can serve your app using a free domain name on the appspot.com domain, or use
Google Apps to serve it from your own domain. You can share your application with the world, or limit access to members of your organization.
App Engine costs nothing to get started. Sign up for a free account, and you can develop and publish your application for the world to see, at no charge and with no obligation. A free account can use up to 500MB of persistent storage and enough CPU and bandwidth for about 5 million page views a month.
During the preview release of Google App Engine, only free accounts are available. In the near future, you will be able to purchase additional computing resources.
Now that is interesting ... isn't it? Only thing.. that I might not like is it is on Python... and that is 'cause I don't know how to code in Python. If you are interested, then hurry up as the invitation is limited to first 10,000 developers as this is a preview release and I've seen Google's launch cycle... and maybe..in a year or two.. you can expect the Beta..:D naah.. I am sure Beta will come soon... just wait n watch, this is something new Google has brought on table and smells like the beginning of the new Era or web based application development is on its way.. BTW...how about an online Visual Studio?... I would take that one for sure.. :)
BTW, Appspot.com didn't work for me..if it is working for you, please let me know...

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Microsoft All Set to takeover Yahoo!!! Sends a 3 weeks ultimatum

Hooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyyyy............. After a long period of time, I am so damn happy about something SEXY...that's gonna happen.. Microsoft has sent a letter to Yahoo! Board of Directors saying[aah..ok...very politely..] giving them 3 weeks ultimatum to decide to not to be... or not to be [:D]..yeah either way they are going to be the part of Microsoft[aaahhh..sorry..googletards...did someone show you the big Middle one? :D]. Here is the press pass form Official Microsoft Web Site : http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2008/apr08/04-05LetterPR.mspx and the CNet news link : http://www.cnet.com/8301-13515_1-9912232-26.html.
And yeah, I can assure you...lots of freetards will start whining on this but hey.. what I can do.. except showing them.. :P..you know what..right? :P and yes... for me... I would love to see Google CXXs start shedding tears on Internet freedom and how Microsoft is a big risk for innovation..and blah blah blah..and as the saying goes..Barking of Dogs will not frighten elephants...
On a serious note, I am not sure why... but I have this feeling, there are alternatives to this situation like some interruption might come maybe Google will take over Y![That will be nice though...really.. ;)] or some monopoly lawsuit might come up... let's hope for the best....
UPDATE: 19:01 10-04-2008
There is a rumor about... Microsoft teaming up with News Corp. to do the RIP of Y!, check out this article at news.com Microsoft and News Corp. lock arms for Yahoo bid?

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Gmail's Spam filter taking a vacation...

Nowadays I am facing these strange mails directly going to my inbox, i wonder is Gmail's Spam filter taking a vacation?Is this only me or there are many others? :D Btw... according to some of my friends.. they get Spams in Gmail...everyday..buh buh..

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Announcing Google Weblogs (beta) - Nice April Fool Trick from Google

Nice try guys... but I guess.. it works on on Freetards.. ;)

Never thought that this will happen so soon...

An article on Slashdot says :
"Zone-H have recently posted the statistical breakdown of the collected website defacements from the last few years. Surprisingly, in 2007 more Linux servers suffered a successful attack than all versions of Windows, combined. Similarly, more Apache installations were successfully attacked than all IIS versions combined. A day after posting this data, Zone-H have questioned the appropriateness of continuing to operate the archive. Despite the valuable information that can be gleaned from the service, it may soon be lost to the world. The natural successor to the now-defunct Alldas archive of defaced websites, Zone-H's archive maintains records of over 2.6 million defaced sites but may be shut down due to the continuous accusations of impropriety leveled against them any time they disclose and mirror a reported defacement."

FlashGet or TrojanGet - Beware FlashGet Users

I have been using FlashGet since I started working at ESS. One thing about this little bandwidth sucker.. is it ...works... 100% and makes the network admins cry if you know how to configure it and what exactly should be done to improve your share of bandwidth in a given network.[BTW, If your network admin is a really smart guy/gal then it is almost impossible to suck all the bandwidth of your network], Now coming to the point, one of my friend pointed out this post from a forum, that reveals a dirty secret about FlashGet 1.9.xx.
According to the article here, the flaw was pretty basic, but worked like a charm for the smart guy who hacked the developer's website and put the malicious automatic update files on the Server itself. And then FlashGets, around the world downloaded the files according to the update files, which were various trojans. I am so damn happy I never upgraded my FlashGet as I hardly get time to make huge downloads now and mostly I get everything done via Opera.
The major problem here is, the flaw still exists in FlashGet, if someone can change the config file locally, FlashGet will download the new files accordingly... and I am sure someone will figure it out how to do it and yeah, I am really happy that I did not recommend this software to one of my colleagues who was desperately asking for a Download Manager.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Gmail-Gtalk April Fool?

Google is at large... patching their popular mail service with latest security updates and what not. However after recent patches I've observed certain behaviors, now as long as I know there is a thumb rule to avoid while planning your application security i.e. never screw up your features to provide better security modal, rather improvise on the implementation front and provide Feature + Security.

This time Google has baffled me, I don't know whether it has to do anything with a recent news leak in middle east, where some caching at ISP Side, allowed a user to see some other user's A/C data, or maybe it is to prevent some niche XSS attacks crafted against the Search Giant's mail service. Personally I use Gmail all the times as I find it quiet faster, lighter and most importantly superior than its counter parts, so I have multiple A/Cs on Gmail. One of them is widely user with Friends while another is strictly for business purposes. On both of them chat is enabled so I don't have to rely on Gtalk whenever I need to chat. I saw this strange thing few weeks back, if on a single computer, I login to one A/C say A/C A, at first my chat will be enabled, the moment I launch A/C B, the chat applet in A/C A will die and will start working for A/C B, if I do a page refresh in A/C A, then A/C B chat will be gone with the wind. Now I know many of Gmail lovers will start jumping saying.. oh..its a feature.. you don't know..and blah blah blah... for me...ITZ A BUG....

The Easiest way to make IE Professional

This is how they define it :
IE7Pro is a must have add-on for Internet Explorer, which includes a lot of features and tweaks to make your IE friendlier, more useful, secure and customizable. IE7Pro includes Tabbed Browsing Management, Spell Check, Inline Search, Super Drag Drop, Crash Recovery, Proxy Switcher, Mouse Gesture, Tab History Browser, Web Accelerator, User Agent Switcher, Webpage Capturer, AD Blocker, Flash Block, Greasemonkey like User Scripts platform, User Plug-ins and many more power packed features. You can customize not just Internet Explorer, but even your favorite website according to your need and taste using IE7Pro.

Some of the shining features that I specially liked[I've read about this, have not used it and NO I am not being paid from these guys]
- Enhanced Tabbed Browsing
- Mouse Gestures[Oh sweet Jesus of Browsing Opera.. like feature..]
- Crash Recovery[I've used IE for years now, and just like all wise people I know how much important it is, and BTW..it is yet again Opera introduced..if I am not wrong, please correct me if you have more info on this]
- Inline Search[Opera...again?]
- Spell Check[Huh... I could use it...really...]

What I was really looking for though, I didn't get it... i.e. Enhanced Memory Management for IE.. :D
BTW, you can try this little thingy [2.24MB] by downloading it from here. And yes..the sweetest thing is.. it is free... and now I doubt... what would be there revenue stream? A browser add-on that can track whatever do with your browser and sell the data to the highest bidder?