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Multi-threaded port scanning in Delphi

, 20:41 - Permalink

Delphi 7There were several times when my team had to do a port scan in a commercial environment to discover rouge or lingering devices on the network. I always had troubles finding a portable, commercial-free, easy-to-use, fast and trusted application so I decided to write my own.

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Programming an ATmega328P with Arduino Leonardo (Arduino as ISP)

, 18:58 - Permalink

Do It YourselfAfter successfully hacking the Christmas tree lights with my Arduino Leonardo I realized I had an abandoned project: lots of brand new ATmega328P-PU chips, which are only waiting to be programmed. I knew that an existing Arduino can be used to achieve this but I experienced problems with a Leonardo.

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Quick and dirty Christmas light fix with Arduino

, 20:16 - Permalink

Christmas is closing upon Do It Yourselfus once again, and I was greeted with not so merry news: the LED lights from last year did not work anymore. Being too late the shops are already closed to buy a new one, but you can't leave your family without the famous look of a Christmas tree. Let's see what we can do about this.

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Internet outage today and ISP switch in June

, 16:59 - Permalink

Server messagesThere was a long Internet outage today due to device failures at the ISP. The problem seems to be fixed now, all services should be back to normal. Unfortunately I am forced to change service providers, which will most probably cause issues.

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Passive power supply (PicoPSU clone) in HP Proliant MicroServer

, 23:12 - Permalink

Server messagesThe HP Proliant Microserver was a hit when it appeared on the market. Due to its capabilities it is still a perfect candidate for a low-cost SoHo server, NAS or HTPC. Most users who replaced the stock power supply had problems with the noisy fan and simply fitted a new 1U PSU or swapped the fan itself. For me this was not an option.
After a day of drilling, soldering, screwing and testing I am really happy to announce my next achievement: I successfully installed a passive 12V power supply instead of the stock one in a HP Proliant Microserver!

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My passive beer can solar furnace

, 18:45 - Permalink

Do It YourselfIn the cold winter days the temperature in the storage building can fall below freezing point. I could use the spare electric oil heater I happen to have, but keeping it running for long months would cost a fortune. It did not take long until I found the famous passive soda can / beer can / pop can solar heaters / furnaces. This is just an other DIY, sharing my experiences during the building process.

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Delphi hexadecimal operations

, 09:41 - Permalink

Delphi 7I was recently working on a project where I had to work with huge numbers (>32 hexadecimal digits). Since not even the largest integer type was able to hold these, I had to come up with a solution to be able to do arithmetic functions on them.

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ESXi disk I/O benchmark and improvements

, 11:44 - Permalink

ESXi.pngSince the SSD arrived I had concerns about the disk throughput, performance was just not right. Copying a virtual disk image took a hilarious amount of time due to the ~80kB/sec transfer speed. I spent yesterday night with benchmarking, and the results are already better, but still not perfect.

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Delphi 7 and Windows 10

, 18:37 - Permalink

Delphi 7I recently managed to crash my development machine so hard that not even a recovery was possible. After the OS the next thing to install was Delphi 7 and I had to face with the usual compatibility issues.
Had enough of researching, it's time to put all necessary steps at one place to make this 15-year-old software to work on a modern system, like Windows 10!

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P400 battery repaired

, 22:54 - Permalink

Do It Yourself
Of course the salvaged battery had a shorted cell, so I had to improvise. The good news is that it's fixed and working! I also managed to reflash the BIOS with a non-official mod, enabling 3 Gbps, hot-swappable hard drives on all ports. Hail the high availability!

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Small server outage for performance improvement

, 19:42 - Permalink

Server messages
Today I had to take the server offline to test a salvaged P400 RAID controller. Although the components were not in use for a really long time, a low battery charge seems to be the only issue so far. A SFF8484 to SATA cable is on the way to be able to harvest the advantages, which includes improved data transfer speeds (lower page load times) and complete data redundancy.

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Windows Batch Scripting - Elevate.cmd

, 11:34 - Permalink

ScriptingI already made this mistake several times. UAC is turned on and I launch a Command Prompt to perform some activities. However, some actions will eventually fail as we don't have Administrative privileges.
In the past I launched a new Command Prompt (elevated, this time) and navigated back to the original folder to try again. Today I proudly present a script, which will do this for you!

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Random outages

, 21:31 - Permalink

Server messagesRandom outages of all services were happening in the past two days. The reason behind is a failing UPS which has been temporarily bypassed until the issue has been resolved. Please keep in mind that until the faulty device has been replaced, even a short power outage will cause the system to reboot, resulting complete unavailability for a couple of minutes.
Thank you for your understanding, sorry for the inconvenience caused!

Redirect ESXi logs to a local datastore

, 23:01 - Permalink

ESXi.pngBy default, ESXi stores all of its vital logs on a non-persisting location. This means if the host crashes, reboots or shuts down no information is available on the root cause. Let's see how to change this.

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Scheduled power outage

, 16:38 - Permalink

server.jpgDue to renovations of the electric system, there will be a scheduled power outage from 2016.03.25 08:00 until 16:00 CET. During this period all devices will be turned off, which means the server and the website will be unreachable.
I am sorry about the inconvenience, thank you for your understanding!

Server outage

, 23:15 - Permalink

server.jpgDuring the upcoming weekend I am planning to move the server hosting my services to a different location, which will result inevitable outages. However I am glad to announce that the useable bandwidth will be increased by 100% and due to the completely different infrastructure I am expecting the availability to be increased as well.
Please be patient, everything should be back to normal until Monday, 15th of February.

Windows Batch Scripting - Counting Gigabytes

, 23:34 - Permalink

command prompt.png
Recently I was assigned to a task where I had to collect folder sizes (and do some math with them) on large number of servers. Talking about real file servers I quickly met the famous "Invalid number.  Numbers are limited to 32-bits of precision." message. Here's how I solved it.

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Windows Batch Scripting - Displaying lines

, 12:50 - Permalink

command_prompt.pngProviding feedback for the user about the status of our scripts is really important. We would like to know if everything is fine - or if not, why? Let me show you some tricks which can take the well-known ECHO command a little bit further!

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Welcome

, 20:49 - Permalink

Hello, stranger. Please come in and make yourself at home! I am glad to announce that Ӕ Central is back and soon valuable content will be loaded as my time allows :)

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