Archive for the ‘Windows’ Category

Stuck in the Avast SafeZone

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Here’s another post that I hope may help someone else to solve a problem that took me a couple of hours to get to the bottom of.

My kids share a very basic laptop, on which I installed Avast! free version as the anti-virus solution (with which I am generally very pleased). However, whilst playing with the gadgets, one of the kids managed to get the machine into the SafeZone, and there it seemed stuck: both “Switch back” and “Turn off SafeZone” briefly exit but immediately return to the SafeZone.

I found that others have had this problem, but the suggestions I found did not help in my case. I really didn’t want to un-install and re-install Avast, and so I hunted around a bit for an alternative fix. Here’s what I found.



How to Set VLC as the Default DVD Player (Windows 7)

Friday, 23 September 2011

Having spent some time searching the web for an answer to this question, I found the same partial information repeated many times. I prefer to keep auto-play disabled. However, I was still finding that Windows Media Player would always start when I double-clicked the DVD drive icon.

Eventually, I decided to have a bit of a dig around in the system.


BitRock Tip: Determination of Architecture + Platform

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

In BitRock InstallBuilder, defining folders specific to 32-bit and/or 64-bit architectures and Linux and/or Windows is simple but not entirely obvious. Here are some recipes.


System Configuration Shortcuts

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Here are details of a few system configuration shortcuts I like to have on my desktop.

“Advanced System Settings (and Environment Variables)”
Target: C:\Windows\System32\SystemPropertiesAdvanced.exe
Start in: C:\Windows\System32

“Registry Editor”
Target: C:\Windows\regedit.exe
Start in: C:\Windows

Target: %windir%\system32\services.msc
Comment: Starts, stops, and configures Windows services.

Non-free Software

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Previously, I posted about free software.

There are just a couple of not-too-expensive commercial offerings that I think are excellent.


T-SVN Tip: More Short-cuts

Thursday, 6 January 2011

In a previous post, I described how to set up a desktop short-cut to open your TortoiseSVN repository browser. There are many other uses of the short-cut.


Sharing a Folder as a Different Name under Windows 7

Thursday, 9 December 2010

With Windows 7, you wish to share a folder (directory) on the network but to have the network view of that folder given a different name. For example, you might wish to share the to local directories <C:\first\share\> and <C:\second\share\> respectively as <\\my-machine\share-1\> and <\\my-machine\share-2\>, in order easily to distinguish them.


Batch / Bash: Output to STDERR

Friday, 30 October 2009

To output a message to the error stream in a batch file, simply do this:

echo your message text 1>&2

Similar syntax may be used in Bash shell scripts:

echo "your message text" 1>&2


Batch: Comparing Files

Friday, 30 October 2009
The trick to testing file contents is to do something like this:

( fc /B "%file1%" "%file2%" | find "FC: no differences encountered" ) > nul && (
  echo "%file1%" and "%file2%" are the same
) || (
  echo "%file1%" and "%file2%" are different

using conditional execution.


Batch: Testing for Empty Directories

Thursday, 22 October 2009

To test whether a directory (or “folder”) is empty, the code

if exist "%dir%\*.*" (
  echo %dir% is non-empty
) else (
  echo %dir% is empty

does not work; it always reports “non-empty”.

The trick

( dir /b /a "%dir%" | findstr . ) > nul && (
  echo %dir% non-empty
) || (
  echo %dir% empty

using conditional execution, however, does work.