Setting up and accessing Hitron cable modem in bridge mode

If you are like me and want to have more control over your home network then chances are you also want to put your ISP modem in bridge mode so that your own router could be used as a gateway.

Here is how to setup your modem in bridge mode:

1.Go to the device home page.

2.Log in using the credentials mentioned on the little fold out received with the device.

3.Click on Basic and find the option saying GATEWAY and Disable it. Modem will reboot now and will have its Wifi and other router features disabled. You can now connect it to your router as WAN access.

Gateway setting in Hitron modem
Gateway setting in Hitron modem

Here is how to access it while it is in bridge mode:

You can access the modem while it is in bridge mode by opening http://192.168.100.1

 

 

[How To] Create Bootable Windows XP USB

Yesterday I ran into trouble while trying to install Windows XP on an old computer. The problem? Well I didn’t have a CD ROM drive on that computer and the only way to install was to use a bootable USB. I tried several well-known software tools available on the internet but somehow they didn’t work. May be because Windows XP was not designed to be USB bootable.

Finally I came across this amazing tool called rufus and it did it. The only other thing it needed was the ISO for Windows XP.

If you also want to make a Bootable Win XP USB, follow these steps:

Bootable WinXP USB
Howto Create Bootable USB Win XP
  1. Launch Rufus.
  2. Select your device from the drop down list.
  3. Click on the little CD Drive button and select the ISO file you want to use (Windows XP image)
  4. Hit Start button and off it goes.

Create Bootable USB Win XP

And you have your bootable Windows XP USB as simple as that.

A weekend with Galaxy Nexus

So, there I was looking at a small crack on top right of my Samsung Galaxy Nexus and wondering how stupid of me it was to let something like this happen. I must say, it is a very good phone not only due to the fact that it is directly worked upon by Google, the people behind Android, but also the features and functionality it has to offer. For those of you who don’t know, Nexus line of phones are first ones to get Android updates, sometimes six months early.

Anyhow, now it had a broken glass but was still working fine and I was able to do everything on it, calling, texting, music, videos, everything. However, I wanted it to be perfect so I checked on ebay and there were replacements available which I eventually ordered, confident that I will get it replaced on my own (I am fond of doing such things.. DIY stuff). After 2-3 weeks, the glass assembly came with the tools needed, a plastic prying tool, two trox head screwdrivers. Now all I needed was some free space and time so I waited for the weekend.

An overhead camera, beer, anti-static wristband, glass assembly, tools, galaxy nexus, 99.9 FM and I was all set. I started by removing the battery cover, battery, the six screws and the plastic outer housing. Oh, did I mention that I used hair dryer in absence of heat gun to heat the screen so that the silicon glue, holding the glass and digitizer screen together,  melts. With the prying tool, I started at the top left corner to pry the glass off the body and it looked like it was working as I was able to detach one tenth of the screen. In excitement, I put a bit more pressure and glass cracked, damaging the internal digitizer. Now the phone wasn’t starting and making any sound. I smiled at myself and finished the remaining beer thinking how inconspicuous that little crack was, the phone was breathing a few minutes back and now it is lying on the table, lifeless.

Moral: Always have two phones ready so that when one breaks down, you could be slow on the other one. Cheers!! :)

How important to select the right stripe size for RAID-0

I was planning to setup RAID0 configuration for my lab machine and I was not sure which stipe size to go for especially in the world of SATA3 SSDs. But again, for a lab computer to install SSD will be overkill. I had all the questions in mind like What is the importance of selecting right stripe size, What is the correct stripe size, What should I set stripe size to, what should be the stripe size for raid0 configuration, Will there be a performance impact related to stripe size, What is the best stripe size for striping or what will be the best stripe size for raid0?

So I went an extra step and tried all the stripe sizes available to me and checked the transfer speeds (this is not the OS drive but a Data drive, the performance of the same configuration is little bit lower if used as the system drive – but is still better than single drive). Not only the right RAID stipe size but also the NTFS allocation unit size (shown below) also has effect on the volume transfer speed.

Choosing NTFS allocation unit size - devindersingh.ca
Choosing NTFS allocation unit size

Let me give an overview on these two things. For those of you who don’t know, setting up 2 or more hard drives in Raid 0, striping as it is called, is a bit of a risk since every thing which you save on the volume gets written on all the drives in parts. So, if one of the drives goes bad, all the data is lost. I would always use it for my lab machine as the data is not very important and critical and I do take daily backups.

What came out as a result was a sweet combination of the RAID0 stripe size and the NTFS allocation unit size (which we always leave at the default setting i.e. 4KB). Here is a list of hardware/software I used:

2 x 1TB SATA2 internal hard drives

Intel 41 chipset with ICH10R raid

Intel Quad core Q8300

16GB DDR3

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate

Intel rapid storage driver 11.7.0.1013

CrystalDiskMark 3.0.2 x64 (http://crystalmark.info/?lang=en) – for checking the transfer speeds

The drives are formatted and there is a single partition utilizing the whole space available.

I manually created the raid with different attributes for each test and collated the results in an excel file. Sharing it will be great idea as it might save someone trouble of doing the same thing for themselves. Here is the result:

Chart comparing various combinations of RAID stripe and NTFS allocation unit size - devindersingh.ca
Chart comparing various combinations

*All the data is in MBps

The value written as 4K-16K means 4K Raid stripe size and 16K NTFS allocation unit size. As you can see, for me the best combination for read and write speeds can be achieved by setting the Raid stripe size as 16K and NTFS unit as 8K, you want a different combination depending upon your needs. At the same time I would like to point out that your might get different outcome for a similar setup as it depends upon many other factors. This is just a basic idea to get started and I don’t have much experience in running benchmarks. I hope this will be helpful for someone. Please drop in your comments.

Installing Blackberry Enterprise Server Express–MS Exchange 2010

In order to install Blackberry enterprise server express on MS Exchange 2010 here is what needs to be done beforehand but not limited to:

  • A working MS Exchange environment
  • Download the BES Express (here)
  • Install MAPI package from: http://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/download/details.aspx?id=1004
  • Perform the Powershell commands on Exchange management shell as mentioned in the install notes for BES (here)
  • Do login with the user which has been created for the Blackberry serviceBESadmin

 

Run the installation and it will tell you what login you are using.

installation start
BES Installation start screen

Put in the information on EULA screen.

2 BES EULA
BES EULA screen

We will select the first option here as it is a new installation.

3 BES setup type
BES Select setup type screen

Next we will select the option Blackberry Enterprise Server and leave the defaults selected.

4 BES setup options
BES select setup options screen

Now it will run a check and make a preinstall checklist, if the MAPI package is not install, it will give you an error like this one:

5 BES Preinstall checklist
BES preinstall checklist

If you have already install then it should be all okay and we can click on Next. Now it will give us an option to install SQL server 2005 Express if no other database is going to be used. Some of us might have to select the other option in case there is already another SQL server which is going to be used instead. For this tutorial we will however use the default option.

6 BES database options
BES Database type screen

Now it will need us to provide the password for BESadmin account that we created and also we need to name the server in the bottom most field. Note that once a name is provided and we hit next, it is not easy to change this name by coming back as it turns gray. On next few screens we just need to click Next as it installs the necessary items and SQL server.

7 BES accounts and Folders
BES accounts and folders screen
8 BES install Summary screen
BES Install summary screen
9 BES Install progress 1
BES Install progress screen
9 BES install progress 2
BES installation complete
10 BES post-installation restart screen
BES post-installation restart confirmation

After the restart, installation will start automatically and it will create a database for the itself and since SQL is installed on the same machine, we will select the location as local.

11 BES database creation
BES database creation dialogue
12 BES post-reboot database information
BES Database information

Now we need to provide the information which becomes available after registering to download the BES installation file. Put in the information and click Next.

12.1 BES enter lic information
BES enter license information screen

We need to provide the exchange account information once again where it will check if the associated account has all the permissions as discussed in starting section of this tutorial.

12.2 BES provide Exchange information
BES Exchange information entry screen

Provide a password for SSL certificate and take a note of it.

13 BES administrative settings screen
BES Administrative settings screen
14 BES user password screen
BES select user name and password scren

We will use the local Blackberry Administration Service authentication as the Active directory authentication doesn’t work sometimes. You may use it if you want.

15 BES admin account
BES Admin account selection

Clicking next will start setting up the server and a summary screen will be shown at end. Click on Start services button to make the server functional or it will automatically start upon a restart.

16 BES final install summary
BES Final summary screen

It will give the links to access the Desktop and Admin management control pages along with an option to export the information to a file which will be handy in the future.

17 BES install complete
BES Installation completion screen

That concludes the installation of BES express in Windows Server environment. Creation and management of users will be discussed in another post.

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