Category Archives: Uncategorized

Windows 7 Licensing: A Few Questions and Observations

As detailed in another post, I was in the process of developing a Windows 7 virtual machine (VM). While researching various aspects of that process, I saw a number of statements about Windows 7 licensing. Those statements provoked me to … Continue reading

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Understanding VirtualBox Snapshots

Contents Introduction Summary Testing Snapshots Merging Changes Back into the Original VM . Introduction VirtualBox was a widely used and appreciated free tool for creating, configuring, and using virtual machines (VMs). This post discusses snapshots in VirtualBox 5.2.6. The VirtualBox … Continue reading

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A Windows User’s Plan for Creating a Linux Mint System

(This post summarizes the situation I faced in summer 2016, as I wavered between Windows 7, Windows 10, and Linux Mint. I did not publish it at that point because some related posts were not yet finished.) As detailed in … Continue reading

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A Linux Mint 18 Virtual Machine to Replace Windows 7

I was in the process of transitioning from Windows 7 to Linux. For reasons provided in another post, I decided to try doing most of my work in a Linux Mint virtual machine (VM) in VirtualBox, rather than in the underlying native Linux installation. … Continue reading

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Converting an Acronis TIB Drive Image to a Virtual Machine

Contents Summary Converting an Acronis TIB to VHD Creating a VHD via Disk Management on a Windows 7 Computer Creating a VHD via Disk Management on a Windows 10 Computer Creating a VHD via ATI 2011 Conversion Option Creating a … Continue reading

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Microsoft Office 2016 Won’t Run in Windows 10 After Updates

Contents Introduction A Manual Uninstallation Script: FAIL A Hybrid Easy Manual Uninstallation Method: FAIL Seeking Help from Microsoft: FAIL Understanding Windows 10 Updates A Partial Solution: Reverting & Postponing Updates . Introduction I dreaded the switch from Windows 7 to … Continue reading

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Debug.Log: Error: Range: Fully Unreadable

I kept seeing a debug.log file open on my desktop, in Notepad, containing this text: [0120/175101.863:ERROR:process_info.cc(632)] range at 0xaabf36c600000000, size 0x155 fully unreadable [0120/175101.863:ERROR:process_info.cc(632)] range at 0xaabf372800000000, size 0x155 fully unreadable [0120/175101.863:ERROR:process_info.cc(632)] range at 0x0, size 0x155 fully unreadable My … Continue reading

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O&O RegEditor: While Importing, an Error Was Detected on Line 1

I was using Windows 10. I had a registry edit (.reg) file that I wanted to add to the registry. I was using O&O RegEditor as my default registry viewer. When I double-clicked on the .reg file, I got an … Continue reading

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Windows 10: Task Scheduler: Trigger: On a Schedule: OK Grayed

This is a dumb one, but I’m going to blog it because it managed to tie me up for at least ten minutes, and a search didn’t come up with an answer. The situation is this: I was using taskschd.msc … Continue reading

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Excel Ran Out of Resources While Attempting to Calculate One or More Formulas

I was using Excel 2016. I was attempting to finish adding formulas throughout all rows of a large spreadsheet. In this spreadsheet, column A contained data, and all remaining columns contained formulas that would make incremental changes, going across, to … Continue reading

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Combining Thousands of Screenshots into a Slideshow or Video Without Losing Quality

Another post describes my travails in converting thousands of photos into IrfanView self-executing (.exe) slideshows, Acrobat PDF slideshows, or video, so as to watch that sequence of photos tell its story without requiring me to open each image file manually. … Continue reading

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Video Formats: Choosing Among Codecs and Containers: MP4, AVI, MKV, etc.

I had been using Adobe Premiere Elements 12 and other video editing software for some time. Such software allowed me to choose the output format for each video file I produced. I had a rough sense of some differences among … Continue reading

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Considering Hardware Upgrades on an Old Windows XP Machine: CPU, RAM, Drive, Battery

I came into possession of a Hewlett-Packard (HP) Mini 110-1023NR. The HP Mini line was marketed from 2007 to 2012. I was thinking about upgrading the hardware on that unit. This post presents what I learned in that inquiry. Current … Continue reading

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A Batch File to Do Things Silently Every Hour (e.g., Check Up on Antivirus)

Now and then, I experienced the rude shock of discovering that my antivirus software was not running, when I assumed it was. Maybe I had intended to turn it off temporarily, so as not to interfere with a program installation, … Continue reading

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Zero Result Searches

Every now and then, I would run a search (almost always in Google) that would produce no results. This post was inspired by one such search. I remembered, and wanted to take a look at, a video I had heard … Continue reading

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Explorer AWOL: File Does Not Have a Program Associated, etc.

I was using Windows 10, though I’m not sure the specific operating system (OS) mattered. I was also using Q-Dir, a replacement for Windows Explorer (or File Explorer, as it was known in Win10). Q-Dir gave me the option of … Continue reading

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Why Is SuperUser Designed to Be Hostile to Outsiders?

This post contains the text of a question that I originally planned to post on SuperUser, a StackExchange website. By the time I finished it, however, I realized that its style and substance would draw hostility at SuperUser. So I … Continue reading

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Choosing an M.2 SSD: Data Rot, PCIe, NVMe, and Other Issues

As detailed in another post, I wanted to add a solid state drive (SSD) to the M.2 slot in my laptop. The laptop already had a hard disk drive (HDD) in its standard 2.5″ drive bay, so there was a … Continue reading

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Adding Light to a Non-Backlit Laptop Keyboard

I had an Acer Aspire 5 A515-51-563W Core i5-7200U laptop. Its keyboard was not backlit — that is, there were no lights in its letters, to help me put my fingers on the right keys in dark conditions. This post … Continue reading

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Smartphone Newbie’s Extensive Guide to TracFone Samsung Galaxy Core Prime S820

I was looking for an entry-level, pay-as-you-go smartphone. This post describes the process I went through in choosing and setting up the Samsung Galaxy Core Prime S820L smartphone from Walmart. This post includes some descriptions of my own learning and experiences, … Continue reading

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Database: All Billboard Hot 100 Hits 1955-2013

(Note: subsequent examination raises questions as to whether this spreadsheet and/or the Singles Chronology are accurate. I will leave the material now, until I have a chance to review it, in case others find it useful.) John Michaelson’s Singles Chronology … Continue reading

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A Better Heat Index Chart

The Heat Index (HI) is a familiar concept, often encountered in the media on hot summer days. The popular understanding of this concept is simply that humidity, not just temperature, affects a person’s experience of heat. The U.S. National Weather … Continue reading

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229 Very Low-Cost Cities Around the World: Data Sources

I was considering the possibility of becoming an expatriate (“expat”) — that is, of moving outside the U.S. to live cheaply. I wanted to make an informed decision on whether to do it and, if so, where I should start. … Continue reading

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Finding Low-Cost Places to Live in the U.S.

I was interested in learning which places in the United States might offer the lowest cost of living. Although people would vary in their freedom and willingness to move anywhere, it seemed that the sources of data I found in … Continue reading

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Using a Car Battery to Power Laptop and Desktop Computers

In a previous post, I explored the possibility of using a car battery to recharge a laptop computer. This post summarizes several answers to the question of how to keep a desktop or laptop computer running when the lights go out. The … Continue reading

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Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM CPU & RAM Upgrade Options

I was thinking about buying an Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM laptop. I decided not to. Initially, I was attracted by its low price tag for great features and a high rating on Amazon. But as I dug into users’ comments, … Continue reading

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Capturing a Long Webpage as a Single Image via ImageMagick

I had a long webpage that I wanted to save as a single image (e.g., JPG or PNG). This post describes the steps I took to achieve that, using ImageMagick. Notes at the end discuss some alternate approaches. Over time, … Continue reading

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Audio Editing: Changing the Sound of a Voice

In the course of my video editing on Windows 7, I had seen two sorts of instances where I might want to change something about a person’s voice. First, it seemed I might want to modify someone’s voice so that it … Continue reading

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Making or Avoiding the Unwanted Transition from Windows 7 to 10

This post continues a previous discussion, with the benefit of another year’s insights and experiences. Why We Are in This Situation: The Microsoft Monopoly In a post dated March 18, 2016, after an extensive review of relevant matters (e.g., Microsoft’s … Continue reading

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Capturing a Long Webpage: Merging Hundreds of Screenshots

At times, I wanted to capture an entire discussion thread, or other long webpage, in a single image or document. This post discusses what I learned about achieving that. Contents Summary PDF Solutions Capturing a Long Webpage in Screenshots Choosing … Continue reading

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Using ImageMagick to Append One Image to Another

As described in another post, I wanted to combine two images to produce a third image. These two images were composites of multiple screenshots of a webpage. The composites were produced by Microsoft’s free Image Composite Editor (ICE). Each of … Continue reading

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Converting IrfanView Slideshow to Video to View Thousands of Photos

My cousins took 2,500 photos during an extended cross-country train trip. I wanted to see those photos, but did not want to press a key or click a mouse button 2,500 times to do so. The obvious solution was to … Continue reading

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Combining Thousands of Image Files into a Single Slideshow or PDF

As described in another post, I acquired thousands of JPGs, and used various tools and techniques to create long, informative filenames that would help me to sort those JPGs into various categories. I started by separating out a smallish number … Continue reading

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Comparing IrfanView and FastStone to Resize JPGs

As described in another post, I was looking for ways to archive thousands of unimportant images in a space-saving way, without simply discarding them. Space was a concern because I was trying to decide whether it would work to combine … Continue reading

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Finding Unplayable MP3s: Using MP3 Diags, MP3val, and Others

I had a set of old MP3s, bearing the same names as files in my current set. For instance, both sets might have a copy of “Dead Kennedys–Take This Job and Shove It.mp3.” But DoubleKiller said they were not byte-for-byte identical. Did … Continue reading

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Getting Duration (Playing Length) from Many MP3s

As part of a larger effort to check the validity of many MP3 files, I arrived at the question of whether the duration of these MP3s had changed. This post summarizes a few inquiries I made along those lines. (I … Continue reading

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MP3 Diags Error Codes

As described in another post, I was trying to understand and use MP3 Diags 1.2.03, for purposes of testing a number of MP3 files. To assist in that effort, I examined the diagnostic codes, or notes, that MP3 Diags used … Continue reading

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Wiping SSD Free Space Without Wiping the Whole Drive

Introduction I had installed Windows 7 on a solid state drive (SSD). I was using VeraCrypt to secure my data drives, but had decided not to use VeraCrypt on the Windows system drive (C:). I had also learned that programs … Continue reading

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Fighting an Unwanted Windows 10 Upgrade at Reboot

Summary Windows 10 inserted itself into my system, so that the Win10 logo and Setup screen were among the first things I saw upon booting my system. I spent two days trying to figure out how it got there. Although … Continue reading

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Secure Compressed Archiving on Optical Disc (e.g., DVD, Blu-Ray)

I had some files I wanted to archive on offline plastic discs. This post discusses why and how I proceeded in that task. The “why” is simple enough. An offline backup in an unwriteable format (i.e., a burn-once ROM disc) offers … Continue reading

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Comparing 7-Zip and WinRAR (with RAR and RAR5) Archive Compression

I was searching for optimal compression. In that search, I decided to compare WinRAR x64 5.40 against 7-Zip x64 16.02. This post describes that comparison. This discussion includes references to WinRAR’s settings. In a recent version of WinRAR, I found relevant settings by … Continue reading

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Using Beyond Compare and DoubleKiller for Cautious Backup

During my 30+ years of computing, I had managed to lose data in many creative and exciting ways. I had discovered that files could contain nothing when Windows said they contained something; I had found that one disk drive was … Continue reading

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Attempting to Customize the Start Menu in Linux Mint 18

As shown in another post, in Windows 7 I had a streamlined, highly organized, highly accessible Start menu containing literally hundreds of entries. I knew where things were, and I could find them very quickly. Even better, my customized Start … Continue reading

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Installing Google Earth in a Linux Mint 18 x64 Virtual Machine

As described in another post, I was installing programs in a VirtualBox virtual machine (VM) running Linux Mint MATE (LMM) 18. Google Earth (GE) was not cooperating. This post describes the steps I took to troubleshoot it. The Recap at the end provides … Continue reading

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Installing and Configuring VirtualBox in Linux Mint

I was configuring a Linux Mint Cinnamon (LMC) 18 system to serve as host to virtual machines (VMs) via Oracle VirtualBox. This post describes the steps that I took to install and configure VirtualBox, so that I could start using … Continue reading

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Configuring a Basic Xubuntu 16.04 System (aborted)

I had decided to try setting up a Linux system that would serve primarily as a workspace in which I would run virtual machines (VMs), within my dual-boot system with Windows 7. Previous posts describe abortive efforts to use Linux Mint … Continue reading

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Opera in Linux: “W: Target Packages . . . is configured multiple times”

As described in another post, I was working in a new Xubuntu installation. I had just installed Synaptic, gedit, and the Opera browser. When I clicked Reload in Synaptic, I got an error message: An error occurred The following details are … Continue reading

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Configuring a Basic Linux Mint 18 Cinnamon System

I had decided to install a dual-boot system, Windows 7 and Linux. It seemed that, among the various flavors of Linux Mint, Cinnamon was the most stable. As indicated in a previous post, I planned to use it for the basic … Continue reading

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Favorite Windows Programs in a Linux Mint System

As described in another post, I was in the process of developing a Linux Mint system. Finding good programs was an important part of that project. A separate post presents a list of 95 Windows programs for which I had … Continue reading

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