Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Avoid passport control queues with IRIS

If you travel frequently in/out of the UK (via Heathrow/Gatwick), and don't always take luggage, then this may be of great interest to you.

Next time you fly, you can submit to an iris scan (well, a photo), which then allows you to use the "Fast Track" lane at border control - where a camera scans your face and eye, rather than the standard queue and passport examination.

When I came back into the country this weekend, there was no queue at the automated terminal - the one chap who I saw use it passed the huge queue which I was trapped in, and in a few seconds was back in the UK. I had to wait another 20 mins to get through.

Of course, I still had to wait for nearly an hour for my bags to show up, but thats a different story!

The Royal Maybe

Recently, a friend commented to me on difficulties which he has had with the Royal Mail - related to Amazon (but not through any fault of Amazon) - whereby various things he had ordered simply failed to arrive.

I thought this unusual.

I ordered something from Amazon.

Two weeks later - no sign of my package, or any attempt to deliver it.

We shall see how things progress!

David Cameron is.. well.. read for yourself

Excellent bit of commentary on the state of our country (and its politics), here. 'Nuff said.

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Intel ProSET Windows 2003 SP2 - Redux

Further to this, advice from intel is:

For Windows* XP and Windows* 2003 Server:

  1. On the target system, click the Start menu and click Run.
  2. Type dcomcnfg in the text field and click OK. The Component Services Console Root window will open.
  3. In the left pane, double-click Component Services, Computers, My Computer, and DCOM Config.
  4. In either pane, right-click NCS2Prov and select Properties. The DCOM configuration properties window will open.
  5. In the NCS2Prov Properties window, click the Identify tab. Change the user account to "the launching user."
  6. Click OK to exit the NCS2Prov Properties window. Close the Component Services window.
This seems to resolve the issue (when viewing from remote desktop) far more elegantly.

Thursday, 6 September 2007

Intel ProSET 12.2 on Windows 2003 SP2 - Solved

Aha. OK. A bit convoluted, but, the following worked:

Download latest proset drivers.
Run installer again and select "Remove".
Delete network cards and reboot.
Wait for windows to finish installing them with its own drivers (MS brand, not Intel).
Run installer again and install.

I now have configuration tabs, yay!

Intel ProSET 12.2 on Windows 2003 SP2

It seems that when using the intel proset drivers (v12.2, I believe) with one of their server cards (PRO/1000 MT Dual Port), under Windows 2003 Service Pack 2, it isn't possible to get into the tabs for advanced properties, e.g. Teaming, et al.

This makes setting up teamed network cards (and ultimately a multicast NLB cluster on top of these) quite tricky.

Bugger. Time to talk to Intel!

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Connecting to Windows 2003 via Remote Desktop (from XP) over a VPN

I'm attempting to include as many keywords as possible, so hopefully, should someone get themselves into the same situation I did, they will find this and be able to fix it!

Installed some Windows 2003 (SP2) servers - did the SP2 install remotely, with only VPN access. Discovered that despite "Remote Desktop" being enabled for administration, I was not able to log in remotely from my XP box - however, SOME servers in the same environment (remote, at the same facility) worked.

Turned out that on the suspect ones, the Windows Firewall / Internet Connection Sharing service was not started. Starting this service, or going into firewall configuration (control panel), clicking yes to start the service and disabling firewall is all that is required. Doh.

How stupid can a pedestrian be?

I saw something so ridiculous this morning that it really enraged me.

A school crossing patrol.

Helping adults accross the road.

At a (light controlled, push-button) pedestrian crossing.

At 9:20 am.

WHY? So the patrol-woman will slow down any cars that jump the red light, when they hit her??