Monday, January 30, 2017

Windows 10 Insider Preview update issues from build 15007 to 15019; this probably will apply to some situations outside this scenario.

For those of you on Windows Insider Preview 10 build 15007 trying to move up to build 15019, go to services, disable "Delivery Optimization" service, reboot and retry. I used the Resource Manager to monitor network connections out and notice that after disabling the "Delivery Optimization" service, "svchost.exe (netsvcs)", started receiving incoming data. After the download for 15019 was completed, I set the service back to Automatic but did not start it. This is just in case having this in disabled state will mess up future installations. My setup is a VM on VMware Workstation so YMMV. Good luck guys. :)

I've placed the screenshots of the process in a public post on Facebook for reference:

Friday, October 14, 2016

Clearing space on C: drive on Windows 7

It's been a REALLY long time since I've blogged anything.

Anyhow, I've been with my current company for almost five years and have been using the same notebook running on Windows 7 for all these years.

Yes, they have given me a new notebook after 3 years, but I've stuck with the current one for reasons which shall not be covered in this article. :P

Basically, I ran out of space on my C: drive. I had only 10.5GB left out of 108GB.

Here's how a quick and dirty note on how to clear space besides using "Disk Cleanup".

Make sure you have a Systems Image backup in case you FUBAR your machine.
This "note" here is meant for my own future reference.
If you destroy, break, damage, get yourself into hot soup in office because of this, it's your decision and choice. I cannot be held responsible for your choice of actions.

Now that that's been said...

1. Run "PatchCleaner" and MOVE the orphaned/old patch folders to another location. This program can be gotten from "" - this effectively managed to clear about 11GB of space.

2. Move your Windows Search Index off to another drive. How to do that?
- Open a administrative command prompt
- Run this command line "rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL srchadmin.dll"
- Click on "Advanced", on next screen, click on "Select New" and choose the folder you want to move the index files to.
- Click "OK" and wait.

Once control returns to the application, you will have more free space on your C: drive. I got back another 11.5GB of space on my C: drive.

Hope the above steps helps. And as usual, YMMV.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

A geek's comments (review?) about the Amazon Fire Phone - It's actually pretty good!

I've owned this phone since February. I've been using it as my spare phone at home only. But I've grown to really like this phone. That's possibly because I'm also heavily invested into the Amazon eco-system. :) I've got the Amazon Echo, several kindles (The Kindle HDX 8.9 is my favorite device)

Anyhow, now that SwiftKey and Google Play services are successfully installed on my Amazon Fire Phone, I can honestly say this is the best value phone you can get on the market. For less than 300 bucks, 32GB storage, quad core. It's got good heft and excellent build quality. Anyone wants to get a feel of it? So far all my tech colleagues whom have handled it all like it. Pity Amazon didn't get a fair chance.

Excellent screen, excellent fonts. Excellent sound processing. There is a noticeable difference in audio quality compared to my Xperia Z2 when streaming to a Bluetooth speaker. The sound is warm and fuller. I don't know. I'm just growing to enjoy this phone the more I use it. Am typing this review on this phone right now.

I'm still using the default Amazon UI. The gesture controls grow on you. So much so that I even ended up mistakenly swiping up on my Xperia Z2.

What I don't like: The default keyboard. That's probably because I'm too used to the auto correct and prediction functionality of SwiftKey. I don't use flow. I'm used to back swiping for deleting. I also can't seem to find where the context switching button is. I'm used to quickly switch applications but on the fire phone... Where the hell is that?

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Long live VMFS3! VAAI enabled storage, ESXi 5.x and above, thin VMDK files = Not able to recover unused (null) space.

Basically we still need a VMFS3 datastore as a "AUX" to shrink disks.

This is interesting! Basically, logically, in plain English.. what happens is since the VAAI datamover used is not at the ESXi layer, the storage doesn't know what is on the VMDK and _has-to_ copy everything. There is no chance for ESXi layer to figure out which blocks to drop!

The conditions - ESXi 5.x onwards (VMFS5) + VAAI capable/enabled storage, Thin Provisioned VMs

"...When the source filesystem uses a different  blocksize from the destination filesystem, the legacy datamover (FSDM) is used. When the blocksizes of source and destination are equal, the new datamover (FS3DM) is used. FS3DM decides if it will use VAAI or just the software component. In either case, null blocks are not reclaimed"

Thanks to Boon Hong​ for highlighting this.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Temporarily disabling password complexity on hardened CentOS 6.5

Navigate to etc/pam.d
(system-auth is symbolic link to system-auth-ac)

Rename original file:
"mv system-auth-ac system-auth-ac-backup"

Create a new file
"cp system-auth-ac-backup system-auth-ac"

Edit "system-auth-ac"
Look for line that starts with "password required"
Change parameters "minlen=1", "dcredit=0", "ucredit=0", "ocredit=0", "lcredit=0"
Save the file (No reboot is required)
Change password with "passwd"

Revert original file:
"cp system-auth-ac-backup system-auth-ac"

Remove bash history
make sure you're in your "profile" directory
"rm .bash_history" - you will be prompted if you want to delete the file.

Patching CentOS 6.5 on VMware

Just a quick and dirty post for my future reference.

Sometimes, the OS gets confused. Especially if there are additional lines for VMXNET.
When you run "system-config-network", eth0 should show the VMware NIC type, for example "VMXNET3"

1. Remove the unnecessary lines from /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules
2. Make sure the MAC address matches matches the ESXi assigned
3. Restart the services "service network restart"
4. "yum clean all" (in case cache is pointing to dead update locations)
4. yum update

Location of network configuration file: (assumption for 1st network adapter)