24 May 2014

I do run run run I do run run!

Decided to go for a little run today, can't say I was planning on it being quite 11 miles... more like 4/5.  First time I've tried running up the long side of Portsdown Hill before, it just seemed to keep going and going.  Took just about two hours which I was pretty happy with as it was the hot part of the day 11 - 1 and there was a fair amount of hill work involved.  The weather forecast was for it to be overcast and raining by about 12:00, as it turned out bright sunshine instead!




19 May 2014

CheckPoint R77.10 SMS Restore

CheckPoint R77.10 SMS Restore

When restoring the SMS server in Checkpoint R77 if you receive the following error check your IP connectivity to the restore server sources (e.g. ftp server).  This message appears to be a catch all for various errors.

"You should disconnect all GUI clients from this SmartCenter server."

08 February 2014

Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 4.1

The Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) is a fantastic tool for helping secure windows based systems especially against zero-day exploits.  If you think this is about server side systems think again, this works brilliant for desktops and the plethora popular applications (Java / Adobe) with security fixes released every month.  This is an easy to use (fire and forget) GUI based utility which is a great part of securing Windows based infrastructure.



I've had it running for over a year and can safely say it's extremely low maintenance and very low on system resources (you just don't notice it.)  In November 2013 is was upgraded to version 4.1, what a lot of people haven't noticed (me included) is that the upgrade process appears to break on certain systems.

You may notice that the GUI no longer appears in the system tray and when it is started you are presented with the follow error.



To fix this, just download the newest version (4.1) uninstall and reinstall with the new version and the problem will be solved.  4.1 also now has very good support for Google Chrome and Firefox and various popular applications such as VLC.  This is a VERY easy way to help secure you server and desktop environments and works well with all the AV products I've seen.

To support most popular applications are you need to do is once installed click on the import button.


Select the 'Popular Software' XML file and click open.



Restart your application e.g. VLC and that's it.



If you've got family members browsing around the Internet and want a simple tool that will help secure them then this is a great place to start.  If you've got a business Windows infrastructure then you should certainly be looking at this, you can deploy and configure with GPO and everything is updated by Microsoft Updates / WSUS.




08 December 2011

BackTrack 5

Always bugs me when I want to check if a specific tool is on a live CD and there is no list of tools.  Well zitstif.no-ip.org has a list of all the tools in the 32bit version of BackTrack 5 (not 5.1 but it will be similar).


10 November 2011

iTunes Setup


As much as I dislike iTunes I do sometimes need to install it.  Ran into a problem today with the install on a Win7 X64 machine.



Apple Application Support was not found.
Apple Application Support is required to run iTunes.  Please uninstall itunes, then install iTunes again.
Error 2 (Windows error 2)

Simple fix, install 7-zip or other decompression tool of choice and uncompress the iTunes64Setup.exe file.
Inside you'll find a list of msi files


Install the problem part of itunes (in this case AppleApplicationSupport.msi) and you'll find everything starts working!



06 November 2011

Virgin Media Superhub

------------------ Updated 8/12/2011 at the bottom ------------------

VirginMedia has certainly been having a lot of trouble this year with serving its customers Blizzard's content, such as World of Warcraft.  Recently I decided to upgrade to their 30Mb service and I ended up using their superhub (at the time it was the only option), and then the problems began.

While trying to download a copy of Startcraft 2, I found that the superhub would spontaneously reboot.  So I found a thread on the Virgin forums and PM'ed the moderators to get a replacement hub.  It turns up and again I try to download again, this time I try the Word of Warcraft downloader.  No surprise it was still doing the reboot, so I phone virgin and 45 mins later I talk to first line support who acknowledge there is a problem, 20 mins later I get told to turn of everything except firewall features.

Services


Firewall FeaturesEnable
Ipsec PassThroughEnable
PPTP PassThroughEnable
MulticastEnable
Port Scan DetectionEnable
IP Flood DetectionEnable

Web Features
Filter ProxyEnable
Filter CookiesEnable
Filter Java AppletsEnable
Filter ActiveXEnable
Filter Popup WindowsEnable
Block Fragmented IP PacketsEnable

The thinking being, that 'IP Flood Detection' was the main cause, due to the Blizzard downloader using P2P Technology.  Now P2P breaking SOHO routers is hardly new but considering this is the premium Superhub new from Virgin Media to give everyone the best experience...... it should work.

Well it didn't take long to come to the conclusion that this didn't work.  Now awaiting second line to get back to me with an update, though in the following thread it seems even with Firewall Features off it still breaks.

Found a few posts on the Blizzard forums, Virgin forums and around the Internet (this one for Wow patch 4.2 or this).  Blizzard customer service said I could post on the customer service part of the WoW forums as there would be quite a bit of interest in it.  Alas this doesn't work as I created a trial account so now awaiting something back from Blizzard so I or they can post.

Now I know I can turn off the P2P mode, however so far I've found the download speed from non-P2P is sooooo slow, it is quicker to run in P2P mode and let it crash one every few mins!  Plus if anyone else in the house wants to phone Virgin for support while I'm away, then Virgin only talk with you if you're running their kit!


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Ok so there are more and more posts about this so I thought I would just list them all as I find them...
P.S. Looks like VM have passed this onto their Firmware team, however they seem to have some internal communication issues letting their customers know!


------------------ Updated 8/12/2011  ------------------


Just got a private message from Mark Wilkin at VirginMedia and he's updated a couple of the threads.  Here is the latest: -



Here's an update on this issue (F001797677). We've been talking to our partners Netgear about this, they've identified what's causing this problem with the Super Hub and they're currently investigating a fix to be included in a future firmware update.

In the meantime we've confirmed that as a workaround for this problem you can connect directly to your Super Hub in Modem Mode to download these files without causing reboots.

As soon as we have more news on this we'll post an update on the forum, sorry for the inconvience.

Thanks

Mark Wilkin
Help & Support Forum Manager


------------------ Updated 1/06/2012  ------------------

Well it may taken a year since the first reports of problems but it looks like Virgin is finally getting a fix together.



I'm happy to announce we're two to three weeks away from launching the beta test of the R35 Super Hub firmware. This includes the following changes:

  • Updated wireless drivers.
  • A fix for issues with the Blizzard Downloader and other multi threaded download applications.
  • General improvements related to the Super Hub rebooting or resetting to factory settings.
  • A fix for iPlayer problems on the XBox 360.
  • An updated GUI for the admin screen. 
If you're interested in volunteering for the beta test please fill in this form and if you're selected we'll be in touch before the trial starts.

Thanks

Mark Wilkin
Help & Support Forum Manager

09 September 2011

SharePoint WebDAV performance in Windows 7

We found a serious performance hit when accessing SharePoint using WebDAV on Windows 7 machines, the solution was found here.  Unchecking "Automatically detect settings" in Internet Explorer 8/9 seems to resolve the problem.  The reason people seem to see this happening from time-to-time is because the "Automatically detect settings" tick box becomes re-ticked.

Simple fix, really annoying problem. :)

As show on Oddballupdate.com the simple fix is as follows:-


  • In Internet Explorer, open the Tools menu, then click Internet Options.


  • Select the Connections tab.


  • Click the LAN Settings button.


  • Uncheck the “Automatically detect settings” box.


  • Click OK until you’re out of dialog hell.