Persisting Dreams

After adding recently a PVR (Dreambox DM7025+) to my home entertainment system, I made some first progress on getting to know the newly added member.

The thing with PVRs is, that you can record tons of stuff, but you don’t have it on tape anymore. So what if you don’t want to watch that movie on your place but instead at a friends house? Do you take the PVR with you? Most certainly not. Back in those days of VHS you would just pop out the tape and walk over to your friends house – those days where easy. But wait, what about LP-mode of certain VCRs? That made life already complicated because not every VCR could play LP-mode taped shows … ok, I’m getting carried away.

Anyway; after records some stuff and watching how my harddisk is filling up I decided to persist some stuff on good old DVD. OK, so far so god. Looking at the harddish revealed that the movies consist of serveral files, the most data being stored im some *.ts file. Obviously there needs to be some work to be done.

Oozoon does not only provide some new and enhanced images for the Dreambox, but also features a great step-by-step guide on how to convert those recordings to be authored to a DVD.

So nice authoring everyone!

Touching the Firefox

After years of struggle with my Synaptics Touchpad and Firefox there is finally relieve!

Up to now I could not take advantage of the scrolling-feature of my touchpad within Firefox, but a recent driver update from version 7.x to driver version 9.0.2 finally made everything smooth … so now I’m happy to surf sites that need to be scrolled …

Expand your VMWare

This has been an issue for quite some time now, and I finally got around to actually do (and write about) it.

OK, imagine this: your setup your VMWare, install software and stuff … and after a couple of months you realize that you underestimated the capacity needs of your installation. So what should you do next, besides panic?

There is another solution (well, panic is still the #1 option!): you just resize your disk! As easy as this is said, the actual process is a little more complex.

  1. OK, first you need VMware DiskManager GUI. After powering the VMWare off, you can start to resize your disk.
  2. After “physically” expanding your disk, you also have to resize the partition. This can be done, by mounting the disk in another VMWare and executing ‘diskpart’:
    select volume [number of the volume to extend]
    extend filesystem

Look at MSDN for more Information about Diskpart.

Voila! This should be all.

Fixing Performance Counters

I use the Process-Explorer from Sysinternals (now part of Microsoft) to watch my running processes. Some day I noticed that .Net processes are not highlighted anymore, like they were before.

So doing some google-research I came across a post at the systinternals forum. I figured that I was missing all of my performance-counters, that was the reason why .Net processes where not highlighted anymore. Looking at the performance-monitor also revealed, that all performance-counters where just “numbers” and had no measures associated with them.

So I followed the steps descriped in the knowlegde-base article 300956. Although this article states it’s for Windows 2000 only, this did work with my german version of Windows XP SP2 as well.

After fullfilling the steps of the article I also re-registered the performance-counters of .Net 1.1 as well as .Net 2.0 by loading the counters from the *.ini files from C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v1.1.4322 and C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727.

After restarting process-explorer my .Net processes showed up highlight like they did before.

C# with PSPad

PSPad offers a lot of syntax highlighters, but out of the box there is no highlighting for C#.

To get highlighting for C# you need to open settings, highlighter settings, select a not assigned set and choose from list of custom highlighter “C#”.

Installing Windows XP Professional in VMWare ESX-Server

Having been working with VMWare for a couple of years I finally upgraded from VMWare Workstation to an ESX-server. ESX means “more power”!!

Well, installing an OS in VMWare is quite easy, just create a new virtual machine and off you go! Windows XP will boot from CD (or even better use an ISO image) and detect all of the virtual hardware without any hassle.

Installing Windows 2003 Server on the ESX is just as easy; but installing my first Windows XP client kinda got to me. Windows refused to detect my virtual hard-disk (neither the LSI nor the BusLogic controller would be detected by the installer). So after a while I figured, there would be some floppy-images on the ESX. So I pressed F6 during the startup of the installer to add the SCSI-Driver provided on the floppy.

As it turned out, the SCSI-Driver only supports the BusLogic controller … instead of the LSI; which is the default-controller added to a new virtual machine.