Archive for March, 2009

XKCD: Students

March 18th, 2009 No comments

So true, I still wake up thinking I'm still in highschool and have an assignment due today.

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Deep Dive: How .NET Regular Expressions really work.

March 17th, 2009 No comments

Have you ever wondered how Regular Expressions really work? Most of us (myself included) just take the implementation for granted, but Jeff Moser of Moserware has posted a most excellent, very in-depth overview how Regular Expressions have been implemented in .NET.

A must read for anyone who would like a deeper knowledge about what really happens under the hood and Jeff has done a brilliant job of pulling it into one consistent article.

Whilst on the subject of RegEx’s, I use Expresso for my regex testing.

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Finally joined the 21st century and onto Twitter

March 15th, 2009 1 comment


Thats right, I’m now l33t enough to be on twitter. A foundry for all my /dev/random thoughts that just can’t fill up the space on this blog. As you’d expect its raw, unedited and uncut, just the way you like it. Alternatively the gadget on the right of the blog has the latest tweets.

Its a little strange though, some twitters are outrageously hilarious, others are plain wierd.

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Quick Tip: Extracting files from Windows Installer (MSI) Setup Files

March 14th, 2009 1 comment

Had to extract some files from a Windows Installer setup, a mental note of the command line:

$ msiexec /a [target.msi] /qb TARGETDIR=[Path to extract]

Whilst on the topic of MSI’s, I can’t live without msi2xml. Perfect for that quick hack to an MSI that simply wont install because of OS Checks or something else – yes, I mess with things far more than I’d like to admit 😉

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Engineering Windows 7: Just a few more changes from Beta to RC

March 14th, 2009 No comments

In addition to the changes made from the Windows 7 Beta release to the soon-to-be-released Release Candidate, a fresh new list of changes were posted today.

Asside from the visual tweaking going on, some important system level changes have taken place:

23. Partition size reduction

In Windows Vista, configuring features such as Windows Recovery Environment and Bit Locker required significant customer interaction.  Also, a significant amount of drive space was reserved. The Windows 7 System partition enables features to be configured to work “out of the box” so very little customer interaction is needed to configure and utilize them.  Based on feedback and telemetry data received through the beta, it became clear that we could cut the drive size in half (from 200M to 100M).

24. Reserved System Partition naming

The system partition is created automatically by Setup when installing on a machine with no existing partitions.  During the Beta the existence of this partition on default installs confused many people and feedback indicated that a label telling them that this is space reserved for the system would be helpful when browsing disk configurations, and further help prevent it’s accidental deletion by enthusiasts. We will now label is “System Reserved”.

25. Dual Boot partition drive letter assignment

For a dual boot configuration for the Beta, the other Windows OS wouldn’t get a drive letter and therefore wouldn’t show up in explorer.  We heard overwhelmingly from Beta customers that the lack of a drive letter was confusing and even caused some to believe that their secondary OS was lost. Assigning the drive letter makes it visible in explorer and aids in navigation across OS installations.

26. Pagefile reduction

Through extensive use of Beta telemetry data, we have determined we can slim down the Windows disk footprint further by reducing the default page file size to be 100% of the available main memory.  It used to be “Memory + 300MB” so on a 1GB RAM system there was an extra third allocated that is no longer required.  The pagefile on some occasions will increase in size if required, but we just pre-allocate less.

27. Improved driver support

Based on telemetry data received from the beta, we identified networking drivers that were not available inbox.  We worked with ecosystem partners to achieve increased inbox driver coverage across wireless and wired with significant coverage for some of the new ATOM-based laptops

Interesting changes to the pagefile pre-alloc reduction.

The release candidate is going to be bootilicious 🙂

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XKCD: Pirate Bay

March 9th, 2009 5 comments

Can someone seed? I'm stuck on .01%

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Windows Vista SP2 RC and Windows Server 2008 SP2 RC Available to General Public

March 4th, 2009 1 comment

BREAKING: Sri Lankan team members injured in Pakistan after a shoot-out on the way to stadium

March 3rd, 2009 1 comment

Our beloved Sri Lankan cricket team has been attacked in Pakistan en route to their stadium in Lahore.

Masked gunman have opened fire on the Sri Lankan cricket team’s bus in Pakistan’s eastern city of Lahore, killing at least eight people and wounding six players, officials say.

Lahore police chief Habib-ur Rehman said 12 gunmen on Tuesday attacked the convoy near Lahore’s Gaddafi stadium with rockets, hand grenades and automatic weapons and were involved in a 25-minute shoot-out with the security forces.

They appeared to be well-trained terrorists. They came on rickshaws,” he told reporters.

Not sure if that was a small joke but its no laughing matter.

Video from Reuters is available here. Thus far its known that the following players are injured:

From The Guardian article:

The attack, in Gulberg, a upmarket area of the city, happened around 9am local time. The gunmen remain at large, having fled from the scene.

Police cordoned off the area, saying they would kill or capture the terrorists. The team had been travelling towards the nearby cricket stadium.

The top policeman in Lahore city force, Habibur Rehman, said that there were around 12 gunmen, at least some of whom arrived in auto-rickshaws.

“Because the police were protecting them (Sri Lankan team), we were the main victims,” said Rehman. “They (the gunmen) looked like trained people. The security provided was good.”

A rocket launcher and grenades were recovered from the scene. The Sri Lankan team, which was playing a test match against Pakistan in Lahore, is to be evacuated immediately.

“This was a planned terrorist attack. They had heavy weapons,” said Salman Taseer, who heads the provincial government as Governor of Punjab, arriving at the scene. “These were the same methods and the same sort of people as hit Mumbai.”

The Sri Lankan Cricket Team from January, 2009

From the Reuters Article:

The group blamed by India, Lashkar-e-Taiba, came from Pakistan’s Punjab province, whose capital is Lahore.

Pakistani stocks were down over 2.47 percent in early trade on Tuesday following the attack on the cricket team bus.

The Karachi Stock Exchange benchmark 100-share index was 2.47 percent, or 140.22 points, lower at 5,541.022 on turnover of 16.8 million shares by 10:40 a.m. local time (12:40 a.m. EST).

“This is not only an attack on the Sri Lankan team but on Pakistan as Pakistan is being put in isolation due to these attacks,” said Shuja Rizvi, director broking at Capital One Equities Ltd. “Who would want to invest then in Pakistan?”

What is the world coming to 🙁

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