Author Archives: DF

Apple Remote App not working with Apple TV?

Apple Remote App not working with Apple TV?

We had this very issue this week!

The trusty iPad could throw YouTube clips to the Apple TV but we could not use it to control the Apple TV itself using the Apple Remote App.

250px-Apple_TV_2nd_Generation[1]

Strange goings on

Answer, we had used the wired only connection to connect the Apple TV to the network (naturally we thought this would result in a faster more reliable connection), when we made the Apple TV use the wireless network the problem went away. Strange!!!

Cloned Workstations Not showing in WSUS? Troublshooting WSUS

Did you clone some machines?

You may find that some of the machines that do not show up in Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) just happen to be machines that you cloned? Or a machine broke and you recreated it by cloning another machine?

Other Sympthoms You May Get which have the same fix.

  • Computers randomly disappearing – reappearing into the WSUS console.
  • Computer will receive updates, but not report into the server properly (if at all!).

Why does this happen?

Each computer on a network requires a SID (Security IDentifier), which uniquely describes that computer account to the rest of the Windows network resources – supposedly not as big of an issue with computers in a domain environment as it is with workgroups.  However, it is best to avoid this issue at all costs.

If you clone a PC the OS and such is copied to the new PC, and you change the windows product key, office ect.. The windows SID used by WSUS DOES NOT CHANGE WITH THE PRODUCT KEY CHANGE! :(

The PC you just cloned now has the same SID for WSUS as the original PC, so you can now see why you may be getting any of the afore mentioned sympthoms.

Do I have this Problem? :)

The Microsoft team have a tool called “PsGetSid” the link is below.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-gb/sysinternals/bb897417.aspx

Run this on the machines you have an issue with and comfirm that you are running duplicate keys first.

It is a great tool to verify the issue.

Run it from CMD Prompt to see the result.

One or Two Machines Cloned?

Just delete the following keys in the registry and reboot the PC

  • HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateAccountDomainSid
  • HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdatePingID
  • HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateSusClientId

Then run “PsGetSid” to confirm the SID has changed.

Lots of Machines Cloned?

To get round this you will need to run a script for each machine at logon, there is a guide here http://www.petri.co.il/setting-up-logon-script-through-gpo-windows-server-2008.htm on how to run logon scripts.

 

Once you know how to run a script at logon you will need to compile a script to perform the changes needed to the registry automatically at login by deleting the following keys

  •  HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateAccountDomainSid
  • HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdatePingID
  • HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateSusClientId

Using a script when the PC is at Logon means that you will also need to stop services, then delete the keys then start the services again.

Therefore, the script will need to be a little more complex than just a bunch of REG DELETE commands.

I first did a lot of reading up on the issue on various “quality websites” (not everything on the web is useful! or true!)

In the end I used a modified login script per below which I copied into a .txt file and then changed the .txt suffix to .bat which was subsequently ran at logon.

Any way you run the below script at you own risk, no warranty is given or implied for the below script in any way or form!

Please read this script and get an understanding of each stage of the process that the bat file goes through and you will see how it works and so you can even write your own solution, my BAT file was called “FixMy_WSUS.bat”

 

REM ** Start FixMy_WSUS.bat script  Echo This little bat file will stop services, delete the required REG keys, re-register the windows update components, restart the required services. Then initiate windows update detetction cycle.

@echo on

echo stopping Windows Update cpmponents and deleting logs..

net stop wuauserv /y

net stop bits /y

rmdir c:windowsSoftwareDistribution /S /Q

del C:WindowsWindowsUpdate.log /S /Q

echo deleting the registry keys..

REG DELETE “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdate” /v AccountDomainSid /f

REG DELETE “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdate” /v PingID /f

REG Delete “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdate” /v SusClientId /f

REG Delete “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdate” /v SusClientValidation /f

REG DELETE “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateAuto Update” /v LastWaitTimeout /f

REG DELETE “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateAuto Update” /v DetectionstartTime /f

REG Delete “HKLMSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateAuto Update” /v NextDetectionTime /f

 

echo re-resistering Windows Update cpmponents..

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wuapi.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wups.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wuaueng.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wucltui.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32msxml3.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wuaueng1.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wups2.dll /s

regsvr32.exe c:windowssystem32wuweb.dll /s

 

net start wuauserv /y

net start bits /y

 

echo Initiating Windows Updates detection cycle…

wuauclt.exe /resetauthorization

wuauclt.exe /detectnow

wuauclt.exe /reportnow

@echo off

REM **End FixMy_WSUS.bat script

 

Excel Crashes everytime you data sort, data filter in Office 2010

Symptom

Excel crashes when a particular spread sheet is being used, the spread sheet is a 2003 or 2007 version (or any spread sheet created before December 2010) the crash happens consistently when using a specific function such as Data Sort, Charting, Data Filters etc..

Often this suddenly happens to an old spreadsheet you have had a few years say from an older version of Office XP, 2003 and Office 2007.

Solution

1  Open the 2003 or 2007 file in 2010, then save it as a 2010 “Excel Workbook” (Select ‘Save As’, then under the filename select ‘Excel Workbook (*.xls)’).

This will save it in Excel 2010 format (However, this is not enough.  If you look at the top of the screen (in the middle  ) near the file name, you will see ‘[Compatibility Mode]‘, indicating that you are not working on a pure Excel 2010 file yet, but a sort of hybrid version.

2  So, after saving the file, close it, then re-open it, and you will see that [Compatibility Mode] is now gone, and data sorts (and filters) now work!

This fix seems to work with any old .xls (2003 2007 Office Excel) files which occasionally crash.

Cause

I’m pretty sure there is a problem in Microsoft’s handling of the old Excel file format (.xls) and the newer XML file format (.xlsx).

For other issues which are more random run the Microsoft Office Repair in Control Panel (programs and features)

 

Second mail domain on Exchange 2007 MX Records the setup.

At work everybody has a primary email address tied to the domain, which for us is CrownSpaHotel.com.

However, some users need a different primary domain (eg. ScarboroughHotel.com) this used to be easy to do in the old days of SBS2003, in fact we had around 7 domains in exchange as secondaries.

1. Make the changes in Exchange

With Exchange 2007, this all changed with a tightening up of security and a change in processes, anyway I searched everywhere for an answer and I found an easy step by step guide here http://sbs.seandaniel.com/2008/10/hosting-multiple-domains-on-sbs.html by Sean Daniel.

2. Make the changes on your new secondary domain

Plesk Panel

You will then need to make changes in your MX records, which for me was in a plesk panel.

In plesk you need to go to the DNS settings (in the website settings bit), here is a quick guide to the settings.

http://www.digitaldreamsinc.net/plesk/ch03s16.html

As a quick rule you should have:   (in my case) mail.ScarboroughHotel.com pointing to primary IP and mail1.ScarboroughHotel.com (notice the 1?) pointing to secondary IP then create two MX records

 

priority 10 = mail.ScarboroughHotel.com
priority 20 = mail1.ScarboroughHotel.com

3. PTR Records

What is a PTR Record

You can think of the PTR record as an opposite of the A record. While the A record points a domain name to an IP address, the PTR record resolves the IP address to a domain/hostname.

PTR records are used for the reverse DNS (Domain Name System) lookup. Using the IP address you can get the associated domain/hostname. An A record should exist for every PTR record.

The usage of a reverse DNS setup for a mail server is a good solution. Some external mail exchange servers make reverse DNS lookups before accepting messages originating from your mail server

So basically unless you want your mail getting flagged as SPAM, you need a valid PTR record on the static IP’s you use to send mail on.

Having set all this up – it all started working! :) But I then had a panic attack, PTR records!

You normally setup PTR records when you first setup your SBS system – this is so everyone in the internet world knows who you are – otherwise your mail might be classed as SPAM!

I had already set these up for the primary domain, so I naturally though I would need to set them up for the secondary domain, in fact you can only have one PTR per broadband line (with static IP) or internet IP!

However, as long as the IP you are sending from has a valid PTR record and it is corresponding to a valid A record you are fine, it validates the IP, so you do not need to set up another PTR record.

Now this bit was good to read of, but I have to admit it took me ages to find this very simple fact out!

For 100 years Crown Spa Hotel has been in the Michelin Guide

Michelin Guide Scarborough Hotel

100 Years for Michelin, 166 for the Crown Spa Hotel!

As the Michelin Guide celebrates being 100 years old, the Crown Spa Hotel will commemorate its own landmark achievement of appearing in the first and current 2011 guide.  The Crown Spa Hotel has seen many changes from the initial Michelin Guide in 1911.

100 Years for Michelin, 166 for the Crown Spa Hotel!

In 1845 the first purpose built hotel in Scarborough was finally finished.   Standing prominent on the South Bay cliffs, with stunning views overlooking the South Bay, it continues to strive for the ambience that you would expect from a hotel of this calibre.

The Crown Spa Hotel offers high levels of comfort and service. Exhilarating views of the South Bay, castle headland and harbour all combine to make the Crown the Number One choice for discerning visitors.  The Scarborough Spa Theatre Complex is close by and the town centre is a short walk away. The Crown Spa Health Club is an award winning private members’ and hotel guests club within the hotel and boasts a fully equipped gymnasium with qualified instructors. A range of activities is on offer: personal training sessions, lifestyle sessions, Jacuzzi, steam room, indoor pool, and aromatherapy. Crown Spa Treatments are also available: spa and beauty treatments in an ideal environment for relaxation, rejuvenation and total wellbeing. Dining in the Taste Restaurant offers a modern fusion of modern European and tasty traditional Yorkshire cuisine, using locally sourced ingredients where possible. The setting is either modern for smart casual dining or sophisticated fine dining in a separate section. Scarborough is an excellent base from which to explore the Dales, Moors and coastal hamlets of the Real Yorkshire.

The Crown Spa Hotel continues to provide Spa Treatments as was originally intended when it was first built in 1845.

Crown Spa Retains Gold Green award and rises to 87% score!

We have just retained our GTB (Green Tourism Business) Gold rating at 87%, which is pretty good if we must say ourselves.

 To celebrate this we are offering ( and coinciding with the National Green Tourism Week) free charging for electric cars in the car park.

The four-star Crown Spa Hotel in Scarborough is to offer people with electric cars a 2 hour of complimentary charge from one of its four new charging points during Green Tourism Week (June 6-12).

A 2 hour charge provides roughly 40 miles of travel for an electric vehicle, and visitors are invited to enjoy a complimentary “Heavenly Coffee” for the driver in the hotel while it is completed.

The spaces are available on a first come first served basis and will be open from 0900 to 1930 at night. Offer limited to one visit per vehicle during the week.

North Bay Railway & Peasholm

North Bay Railway around 2.5 miles from the Crown Spa Hotel, just walk round the North Marine Drive that you can see tailing off round the back of the lighthouse, when looking down to the South Bay from in front of the Hotel. Date visited Easter 2011.

Trip suitable for all the family (disabled access available) If your youngsters are ‘train obsessed’ like mine, then this trip is for you…

North Bay Railway have been operating trains since 1931, taking passengers from Peasholm Park to Scalby Mills stations, offering beautiful views of Scarborough’s North Bay.

North Bay Railway Things to Do in Scarborough

Toot-Toot Train Entering the Station!

The line operated by the North Bay Railway Company Ltd, offers a wide range of attractions as well as the railway, including the Glass House Bistro, Boating Lake and Historic Water Chute. Glass House cafe is opposite the train station: opening times 10am-4.30pm Mon-Fri Sat sun 10am-5. 

Children’s events take place throughout the year including Santa Specials, Themed Weekends, (Teddy Bear’s Express, Hallow screen) Xmas Santa express they are also open every weekend and daily from the 2nd of April onwards

Glass House Cafe

Nice place for a break and a Rest, sitdown and relax.

 

 

 

First train: 11:00am mid week and 10:30am at Weekends & Peak Times.

When:
On the hour and xx.30 from Peasholm Park and xx.15 and xx.45 from Scalby Mills. At peak times, every 15 minutes

Until: 4:00pm

Child Single £2.00

Adults Single £2.60

Child Return £2.50

Adult Return £3.10

Prices at the lovely Glass house, just opposite the train station, vary from £4.95 for a baguette, cakes from £2.60, main meals £7.25, and £1.60 tea, or large cappuccino £2.25 and cold drinks from £1.80.

Scarborough Hotels, Events and Attractions from the 1960's

A Hotel in Scarborough

Crown Spa in the 1960's

 

From time to time we all complain about how things are not as good as when we were young.

The tourism trade continues to be a major part of the local economy despite the current affordability of foreign holidays. While weekend and mid-week-break trade are tending to replace the traditional week-long family holiday, the beaches and attractions are always very busy throughout summer – and increasingly busier in the winter months when Scarborough is often seen as a peaceful bolt-hole from cities such as London, Manchester and Leeds. Confidence in the hospitality industry is high, evidenced by major refits in recent years to the likes of the Crown Spa Hotel.

To have a look at the nostalgic past have a look at the link below for the Yorkshire Film Archive.

http://www.yfaonline.com/yfapublic/assetDetails.cfm?film=1222

Memories of Scarborough South Bay Pool.

I spend all last weekend on the beach in a chalet (will be doing the same this weekend).

 Everybody had a great time; especially the kids in the rock pools and jumping off the South bay sea wall at high tide, though one or two were hesitant at the 5 foot drop..

 Jumping off the wall reminded me of the old South Bay pool high board; where up to age 10; I would walk up the concrete steps “legs a wobbling” getting to the top, looking down at the long drop below, watching the wet drips from my feet fall down to the water and disappear. Later I would do the obligatory walk of shame back down, much to the jeers of those spectating.

One day in March my sister and I received “shorty wetsuits”, I think so that we would spend longer in the South Bay Pool and not come home and bother mum and dad in the small hotel they ran; even though – the wetsuits were well received.

Jumping off the South Bay Pool High Board

From a Distance

My wetsuit was red and black, very stiff material and kept me warm for about 1 hour longer than without; it also I found offered me much valued protection from the odd “belly flop!”

 So one day aged 11, I went with my friends to the pool and also down there was a young lady I was rather taken with, anyway I wasn’t getting very much response with her, so I just got up and walked away.

I soon found myself for some inexplicable reason* doing the “wobbly leg walk” all the way to the top of the high board, I got to the top and looked down, it was a long way and my stomach was turning, but down in the crowd was the young lady I liked.

 Well it was decision time, jump? Or walk of shame?

 I then realised I had my Batfink suit on (MY SHIELD OF STEEL), I also realised that the young lady of my attentions was now watching me, as my dear friends had started shouting at me to “Jump!” and  other shouts like “chicken!”.

Now everyone in the South Bay Pool was watching ME! (in those days about 200 people). Needless to say I was now very nervous.

 Well the next 3 seconds were the longest of my life so far! I stepped off and my whole life seemed to be at an end – down I went.

 Needless to say I survived, and resurfaced with a big grin on my face and my friends speaking between themselves saying “He did it” “ I don’t believe it”

 As i was getting out (remember the enormous wooden steps?) one of the life guards came over to me said “How old are you?”

I answered “11” Expecting to be told off!

He replied “Well you had better get back up there and make another 3 jumps, just so you know for certain that the last jump was not a fluke!” (don’t think this advise would be allowed in today’s health and saftey world)

 So up I went at least another 10 times, that day, No wobbly leggs too!

 The news was all over school and I was quite proud at my achievement.

 All that summer I was a bit naughty as I would wait for an older boy or a man to do the “wobbly leg walk” then I would follow them up and speak with them while I was up there

  •  “long way down isn’t it?”
  • or my classic “someone died last week jumping of here”
  • or my other favourite “you first” (to be followed by “come on I haven’t got all day”) then I would jump off.

The older boy or man would then have to do the walk of shame! ALONE!

 Anyway if you want to see how high the board was have a look at the following http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8f1dKY7vmbI 

*= Look this is a “man-thing” that you ladies make us do!

Open multiple Instances of Excel in Office 2010 and 2007

After over 2 years of using MS Office 2007 and now 2010 (a couple months),  I have become really frustrated with Excel opening in the same instance, especially when I now have two excellent monitors.

 This single instance “feature” was implemented in Office 2007 to save memory, and is a great feature if you are working on alike notebooks, but bloody pointless when you have two monitors and 4GB of RAM and 4 CPU’s in your work PC!

But I now have a solution!

This fix works by adding certain keys into your registry.

It will not only allow you to double-click on an icon and have it open in a separate window, but also adds a neat little Right Click dialog that reads “Open in New Excel Instance”, when you right click an excel file.

 Pop over here and download the  zip file

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Software/Office_Productivity/Office_Suites/MS_Office/Excel/A_1007-Option-to-open-excel-2007-documents-in-a-new-instance.html