Archive for the 'Tech' Category

Cataloging your movies with XBMC

If you have a shedload of downloaded movies but struggle to be able to see the wood for the trees, follow me after the jump for a simple step by step to using XMBC to generate a useful catalog of all your movies.

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Wii Homebrew.

Like so many people I know, I’ve had a Wii for going on two years now but never really used it in anger. (Blame the Xbox and PS3 for that). So this weekend, with little to lose (save for the possiblity of bricking a Wii I barely use anyway) I decided to take the plunge and install some homebrew.

Following GAFS’s Wii Homebrew guide (to the letter) together with a 2 gig SD card I pick up in argos for about €10, a few hours later I was the proud owner of a Wii capable of playing downloaded iso’s directly off a USB-HD plugged in the back. The guide is pretty straightforward and handy enough to follow, though I’d caution against rushing into anything without reading each section in advance in its entirety.

By the end of the guide, with USB Loader installed in the Homebrew channel I was a little lost with regards how to properly format the usb device and load the iso’s onto it. The answer to this turned out to be this handy app which takes care of all those issues.

All six games I loaded onto the usb drive worked perfectly first time.. and so I’ll admit I’m a pretty happy camper (or is that Wii’per?)

|EDIT| If you want to store your games on a drive formatted as FAT rather than WBFS, check out Wii Backup Manager

Usenet.

I’ve long been a fan of usenet for all my downloading needs. I’ve always found torrents a bit fiddly, and a bit hit or miss depending on the age and popularity of what I was looking for.

With more and more torrenting sites coming under fire, I more regularly find myself talking people through the basics of setting up and using usenet. So here’s a basic primer for all

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Whats on my IPhone … ?

Here’s a sneaky peek at what apps are currently installed on my iPhone. Though beware, Just cos its on my phone doesn’t exactly mean its any good :)

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Advent 4211 boot bcd problem

So I got given a sickly Advent 4211c which was failing to boot, with the following error message :

windows failed to start …
File: \Boot\BCD
Status: 0xc000000f
Info: An error occurred while attempting to read the boot configuration data.

What followed was a weekend of googling, and general hair-pulling to get this little beast up and running ..

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Publishing Your Blog

So I started to wonder if those hits I had last night from the Google and Yahoo search bots meant that my blog was being indexed. A little bit of playing around later and I realised that it didn’t seem to be the case.

Do you know that Google provides tools so that you can examine what they know about your site? Check out their Webmaster Tools. Equally Yahoo also allows you to manually sumit your site here.

Because it’s gonna be a blog I figured I’d try and submit it to some of the blog directories. Technorati came top of list, and in order to validate my ownership of this blog I need to include this link to my Technorati Profile.

For the record with Google and Yahoo, claiming ownership of my blog was done by creating a small file on my “server” with a specific filename, which in turn they use to validate that I’m me!!

Right, now I’m waiting with baited breath to see how long it takes before I’m indexed by Google and Yahoo.

Up and Running baby!!

So having spent the last N hours searching around for a web host to subscribe to I was beginning to get quite dissillusioned. A billion companies out there all offering the same services, and a billion other websites all claiming that a different company was by far the best. Now I know I suffer from OCD at the best of times, and so the thought of subscribing to some rubbish hosting crowd only to forget all about it a few days later was beginning to get to me … and then I had a thought.

How about I just host it here on my own machine, and if I manage to maintain my interest levels, then I can move to a hosted service.

I liked this idea because it took away the hard choice regarding whether I wanted to go .Net or not in terms of my host. By hosting it locally I can have it all!

I decided to give WAMP a blast. It installed out of the box with no problems, and almost immediatley I had a webserver up and running which I could access at http://localhost. Ok, so now to make it accessible from the interwebz. Well a quick trip to http://www.whatsmyip.org/ gave me my external IP, but for some reason when I stuck that IP into my browser I got nothing. Hemmm, of course my firewall was problem. I enabled NAT on the router for HTTP, and presto we’re up and running.

Now, because my ISP uses dynamic IP’s I didn’t know what I could do to get a permanent redirect. Well, a few minutes of googling later, and I discovered DynDNS. They offer a free service which will map a domain name to your dynamic IP. It uses a small agent which you install on your PC, which ensures that DynDNS’s server are kept up to date. Cool! We’re rocking and rolling!

So what was I gonna host? Well the intent is to have a play around with PHP and MYSQL etc to try and learn what all the fuss is about, but I decided I needed something to keep my mind focused. So off I dashed to wordpress.org, downloaded the latest version, copied it to the right directory, created a new database, made a couple of config changes … and whammo, I’ve got a blog up and running.

The final step was doing a bit more research regarding security. There’s a few bits and bobs which should be tightened up, and because I’m paranoid, I think I’m actually gonna move the server onto a Virtual PC in a DMZ after finishing this post, if only because I don’t know enough to sleep right otherwise.

But overall I’d say it’s been a pretty productive couple of hours. I’d like to hope that I’ll continue playing around with this stuff over the next few weeks, and maybe make a few posts about whatever I learn along the way. However, I know me better than most! I’ve no doubt that at some point my OCD will get in the way and I’ll drift onto something different.

But who knows, maybe depending on whatever that is … I’ll blog about it here too!!

As the title suggests … I truly do … lack any real intent!!