Blog Posts

nfh.uk

Today was the day to buy another domain!

Several years ago I purchased some unneeded domains from an old employer, they had been dormant for a while and the companies that they represented were liquidated, so I offered some money for them. Luckily the offer was accepted, so I took them and transferred them before they had chance to change their mind. I say that, it was only one person and they didn`t really have much idea about domain names, only that it cost them money and they wanted to save some!

Most of them have gone now with the exception of one, www.nfh.co.uk. I have kept that as it has a kind of sentimental value as it was for the company that I had so much fun working at for so many years.

Its registration anniversary came up on the 30th May, so I decided to register the .uk http://www.nfh.uk domain that had been reserved for me. God knows / not sure what I will be doing with it but for the time being it points here.

Enough now

Today I have decided to call it a day on something. Not sure why I hung onto it for so long but I think today proves, rather stupidly from my point of view, that it will not so much be the same again but more there will be nothing ever like it again.

While I still have some things in the back of my head, I am willing to leave them there and have them as one of those memories that you never can or want to forget, but one you can call on now and then for a smile and a good feeling.

Hmmm 🙁

A new take on a scam!

Today I woke up to find a Skype message from a ‘female’ asking to add me to their contacts. I had a quick look at their profile which was some burry pixelated picture, no doubt a thumbnail taken from a social media website somewhere and had a quick check of their email address.

So, as I normally like to have a bit of fun I played along for a bit. Asking questions, answering questions, making out that I was rich and single, asking them what they were wearing etc.

I was however surprised when said contact then tried to video call me! Again I thought I’d play along so I disabled my camera and mic and asked them to call me again, telling them to hurry up as I was about to get in the shower.

So they called me and I accepted, ‘she’ asked why she couldn’t see me, to which I replied that I couldn’t see her either.

On closer inspection, the picture of the ‘female’ was the same for 1m 39s even though they were typing and sending me messages.

I’d had enough by then, knowing full well that I was not going to see any boobs, so I sent a quick message saying thank you for the IP address and pointing them to a website that details scammers and their email address, declined the add request, blocked them and reported them as spam.

Cheap crappy scams! If they want money out of me then I need to see the goods first!

Recovery again – win some, lose one

Today I got given a USB key stick to try and recover data off.

I tried my trusty recovery tools and was greeted with a stat that wasn’t going to work out too well!

It took 50 mins to scan 3 sectors on the key stick and given that there were 31015 sectors reported in total it was not feasible to carry on

31015 / 3 * 50 / 60 / 24 = 358.97 Days!!

Hmm I think not. I know I spend a lot of my time sat around waiting for progress bars, but that is one progress bar that I do not want to wait for.

All that was left was to deliver the bad news to the owner!

I state what I always say yet again – Do not rely on a USB key stick to hold your important data and expect it to work everywhere all the time, because you have just learnt the hard way what can happen. Back it up and back up your backup, and if you are that worried, backup the backup of the backup! And by that I do not mean on the same key stick or hard drive.

SCCM upgrade from 2012 SP1 to 2012 R2 + CU

So, finally I have finished upgrading all of our clients to the latest version and CU of the SCCM client.

To say it has been a challenge is an understatement.

You would think that given what SCCM is used for that it would be easy and quick to do, but no.

There were just over 400 machines and once I upgraded the server form SP1 to R2 and then updated it to the latest CU I had to deploy the R2 client and then deploy the update to CU4.

The R2 client seemed to get deployed quiet easy, there were a few machines that for some reason had really really old SP1 version on them. For those, there were a few that didn’t like the upgrade, so I had to uninstall the old client and then deploy the new one.

I then set about deploying the CU4 update to all machines. There was a bunch that wouldn’t update, no matter how long I left it and no matter how many times I forced an Application Deployment Evaluation Cycle it stayed on the old version.

I had a SQL query listing all the machines on the old version, the started off about 49.

I found it easier to remote on and manually uninstall the client, wait for all processes to terminate, rename the old SCCM directory and then reboot the machine. I figured that out after a bit of trial and error trying to get things off and on again!

So, thinking I had it sussed out, I was somewhat surprised when I refreshed my query one morning to find the number of machines had increased. Looking closer it was a few machines from the Labs.

RDPing on showed that the version was indeed the old version. I really couldn’t be bothered to see what the hell was going on as it had been a good few weeks that I had been trying to do this and people not logging off! and machines in locked rooms that didn’t work with WOL were doing my nut in.

So for each of those I applied my fix – remove the old client, wait for processes to terminate, rename the old CCM directory, reboot the machine, deploy the new client via SCCM and then deploy the update. That seemed to work for every computer that somehow managed to downgrade its client version on a reboot!?

Now to package and deploy the growing list of application updated that are needed.

A name from the past!!!

Today I got a call from someone that I do work for / help out / rescue now and then asking me some technical questions.

Not really that difficult to answer and in theory put into effect, but with that came the news that it was for someone that I thought I had heard the last of, or at least never have to deal with again!

Now I’m a the middle of a dilemma, do I help out a friend that has been good to me, as I have to him, or do I tell him I won’t do it. I always try and be professional when it comes to my reputation and working with other people. Unfortunately the more I thought about it the worse it made me feel, all the thoughts and feeling came back along with a lot more hatred for the person and the situation they caused and put me through. I have enough stuff going on in my head to deal with at the moment without adding that to the mix!

I think the best way for me to go with this is to do the job if/when it comes up, with the conditions that I do not have to deal with the person in any direct way and keep my contact details well and truly private.

Shit, I hate being put in situations like this!

New Year – an update

So a bit of an update on the things that I was trying to make an effort with at the start of the year.

I need to do things as they arrive – this started of good but soon got difficult. I was not expecting bustpc to pick up so quick, and needless to say that there was a fair bit too do and not enough time to do it in, so things slid, which was ok, as there was a lot there. I can live with that and work on it.

I need to stop being distracted while I am doing said above things – again it started off good, but declined as soon as things got busy. Various interests caused the distractions to happen again and before you know if it was common place!

Find a way to get the most out of what free time I have – well given the above 2 items and the results, needless to say free time is still somewhat minimal. Not sure I can see a way out of that one at the moment.

Respond to messages when I get them – that has been ok to do, had some incentive along the way which has made it easy to do. Will see if I can keep that up in the future.

I`ve also decided to go a bit healthier – this has been great. After cutting out all the crap that I eat, including the beloved chocolate, I have managed, as of today, to lose 2 stone! I am more than happy with that. I have to thank an incentive along the way to help towards making that happen, but never the less it did happen.

Another hard disk for recovery

It’s happened again, someone else has asked me to take a look at a hard disk that has lost all its data.

I was hoping that I wouldn’t see one for a while after the last one, but it appears not.

It really does amaze me what people keep on a portable device that is highly important and impossible to get back.

Anyway, I recovered what data was on there, took a few hours to do, but most of it was there. Sods Law says that the first file that was needed was one that it hadn’t manage to recover!

I convinced the user to put anything that was important up in the cloud so that it was safe and could be got at easy. Is always nice to see someone taking on board some advice.

Hard disk recovery

Today I got asked if I can recover files off of a hard disk that was FKD. I’m always up for a challenge and do like to do things that others can’t.

So I got the disk and run my tools on it, some knackered sectors increasing the scan time to 45 hours! Geez really? I do not want to leave it running for that long! But it soon sped up and finished after about 4.5 hours.

It then took another 2 hours to recover the data off onto another hard disk, not made any quicker by the fact that it was 10 years old and USB 1! To top it off it contained a lifetime of memories for the person, so needless to say I was relieved and happy when I managed to get pretty much all of it back for them.