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You can use irfanview just fine in "portable mode". For years I use an archive from the irfanview folder on every computer in my control. Always worked from Windows XP till Windows 10, including the Server editions. Now I do not use/store settings with it, but you could try to store yours in the irfanview folder itself. Create a new archive from that folder and store that archive in a safe place. When you need it again, just extract the archive in the desired location and you can continue working as if nothing happened within a few seconds.

My personal software repository for portable apps is almost 12GByte in size and consists of tools that were made available as portable app by their creators or made portable by myself, using a piece of software called: Cameo.

Doing things this way, it is possible for me to rebuild a Windows system from scratch in about 2 hours (with spinning disk HD's), barely any other configuration required. 

Coding Snacks / Re: Custom WinPE build
« on: August 08, 2018, 11:22 AM »
The link to Lakka. It is still a http website, in case your chrome browser starts to whine about that.

You also need to check the user rights for the folder you wish to create the new sub-folders into. 'Run as administrator' functionality, as well as UAC, have a different impact in comparison between Windows 7 and 10. Windows 10 protects a lot of folders on the C:\ partition, more harshly then Windows 7 does. Windows 10 also gives me the impression that it protects more folders in this way than Windows 7 does.

It might be an option to add your user account to the list of users that is allowed to read and write in the desired folder (right-click on that folder, select Properties and go to tab Security to add your user account).

Something else to consider: The first (local) user account that you create in Windows is usually associated with two standard Windows user groups, called 'Users' and 'Administrators'. When accessing any folder on that computer, Windows will check what user and user group rights are configured at that folder. Windows will always default to the most restricted access to that folder, if a user is part of multiple user groups. This behavior is preferable for your own security.

Removing the associated user group 'Users' from your user account would help Windows making up its mind on how much access rights it should grant to your user account for any folder. Doing this on a single user PC is not a security problem. With a multi-user system it could be. When another user executes some malware which takes a peek at user group associations for all (local) accounts to find out which ones to target (first). 

Coding Snacks / Re: Custom WinPE build
« on: August 07, 2018, 01:43 PM »
It seems to me that he's running games.  In a console cabinet.  Which means he's probably running one of those book sized machines.
Yes, on a system with 16GB of memory (as it seems) and a quad-core, if that won't perform properly, what else will?... As said, I think he's hunting for ghosts. Overclocking, or selecting a higher frequency CPU, will add more bang than running Win PE with all it's limitations.

Even on a 16 GB machine, windows processes can interfere and make your gaming experience less than optimal.  If he can get this out of the way as a possible impediment, and then move on to doing things with the hardware if necessary, I'd see it as a useful step, personally.

And that is more often caused by I/O interrupts that make the processor "hick-up". A reason is usually a sub-optimal hardware mix, no matter how over provisioned.

If an absolute bare-bones Windows installation is what you after, you should look at how musicians set up their Windows-based studio. Those persons have a much better understanding of what hardware combinations work and all the services/functionality you must strip from Windows that create these processor "hick-ups". Normally you barely notice interruptions in the flow of information that your eyes/ears receive from the computer, but when the soul purpose is to record the best quality sound without any interruption from either hardware or software, you install only the bare minimum of extra software and strip all surplus from that computer.

Persons that have such a computer usually keep it out of any network, disable all Windows updates and won't patch any software unless absolutely necessary, as such a state is difficult and often expensive to attain.
Which is why it is often easier to not use Windows. A Raspberry Pi computer is much more limited in hardware capabilities, but it is hardware that has proven to work very well together. Then there are special Linux-based operating systems for it. Hardware and software that work in tandem.

After taking a brief look at Launchbox and Kalla, my personal preference would be Kalla, because of its cleaner, deceivingly simpler look. While Launchbox appears to have more expansion options, Kalla works with PC's, Mac's and raspberry Pi or similar devices. If looked at pure gaming experience, I think both systems are pretty evenly matched.

Hirens BootCD is under new management and made a new PE disc based on Windows 10. This can be easily adjusted to your needs. I created a bootable pendrive, then added my whole portable apps collection to it (about 12GByte) and 70% of those worked right out of the gate. With looking/applying missing dependencies that is now up to 90%. Just to indicate that adding, but also removing tools/apps, is quite simple with this boot CD. The Hirens BootCD is also only half the size (1.3GByte) than the Bob.Omb's Modified Win10PE boot CD (2.6GByte), while both have very similar feature sets and functionality.

Coding Snacks / Re: Custom WinPE build
« on: August 06, 2018, 06:09 PM »
It must be Windows? If emulation of games is the only thing required, I think you can get much more quickly a linux-based bootable environment where you can select the type of emulator (Amiga, MegaDrive, SNES, etc.) and then use the emulator software to look for the ROM you want to play.

This is a LifeHacker link with instructions on how to create such a system with Lakka.

Another simple (but time-consuming) way to attack this problem is to create the PE environment that did work for you onto a pendrive, strip that one from all the apps/tools you don't think you need and recreate an iso file from what remains. A tool called: Folder2Iso could be of help.

Or get a Raspberry Pi device (about 30 USD) and use the emulation station software with it. This works also with Linux and Windows machines, but those kinda  defeat the whole purpose.

In any case, what you want has been done already and can be attained for a relatively small amount of money and a bit of (hobbying) time. There are worse ways to spend a Saturday :)

General Software Discussion / Re: Et Tu, CCleaner!
« on: August 06, 2018, 02:07 PM »
System Ninja is an alternative. But keep in mind that it is more aggressive in cleaning up. While I myself have not experienced any troubles with it, others have. Or, at least they claim to have.

Then again, I must add that 90% of all the tools that I use are "portable". Most of the tools that do not have such a mode as an option, can either be gotten from sites such as or winpenpack. and if you strike out there, you can use a tool like 'Cameo' to create a (semi-)portable version of the tool.

CCleaner won't be able to affect the workings of such applications and the same is true for System Ninja. All of the above is mentioned just to clarify that results may vary on your system.

On topic:
At least it is still nice to read that companies still listen to the reactions of their users.

insufficient user rights? Inside the folder where kalos tries to create the new empty subfolders, I mean. That seems to me the first thing to be looked at. Windows 10 is more strict about that kind of thing than Windows 7 is.

Are 4Tbyte disks even supported in XP?

Also, the BIOS or UEFI system in your computer might have a limitation of only supporting drives that are 2TByte or smaller. In that case you must look for a tool from the hard disk manufacturer to enable the remaining part of the storage capacity. Still, even with such a tool you won't be able to create partitions bigger than 2TByte.

Some NL sites I frequently visit were also unreachable a week or so ago. After research from a tech site that got hit, it appears that someone paid about 40 euro's to have a stress test website attack several domains for a day. No questions asked by the stress test website to see if the person paying for the stress test had anything to do with the requested domains...they just take the money and do their thing. The guy who paid for it was eventually caught, because he started to provoke/brag to one of the admins of the tech site through IRC.

Hello again, i did not found eMail, but a link with similar content to block Microsoft Servers.
Stop Windows 10 spying on you using just Windows Firewall

Hope it helps, take care!

Above is not mentioned to be (mis-)used by beginners since it go systemdeep without restore!! You must know what you do!

Firewall rules? Those are not "systemdeep" and they can be disabled or removed with a few mouse clicks when you use the standard Windows Firewall interface. There are 3rd party tools that make working with the Windows Firewall even simpler.

Generally speaking, do understand that blocking rules in a firewall can have consequences for some functionality in the operating system. The article in the link above discusses a list of IP addresses and domain names that Microsoft uses for all their telemetry and provides a batch script to create and apply Windows firewall block rules. Not more, not less.

However, Microsoft cycle through their (pretty extensive) list of IP addresses and domains, so this list needs very frequent updates. Because an IP address may block a telemetry server today, but could be blocking access to Cortana or Bing or Windows Update or Skype tomorrow.

That last part causes confusion with lots of users, especially those who are not too familiar with networking/use of firewalls. As it is, these firewall block rules are not that effective as a solution, because of the IP address cycling, but also because because services with a domain name the starts with 'telemetry' can just as well handle (some) traffic from Skype or any other cloud service provided by Microsoft for that matter.

If you are not entrenched in those services and have a local user account on your Windows 10 installation, you can more or less safely use the provided Firewall block rule list, disable those rules once a month for doing Windows updates and when your system is up to date, enable the block rules again.

It would even be better if you have a hardware based dedicated firewall device where you apply these block rules. Than you can be sure those rules are not circumvented by anything Microsoft alters on your Windows system. A simple spare/old PC with at least 2 network cards, in combination with software like 'OPNSense' or 'pfSense' can already be used as a hardware based dedicated firewall device. Both software packages provide much, much more services than just a firewall, but you don't have to use these. Best of all, 'OPNSense' and 'pfSense' are open source and can be used free of charge, have active forums that provide a lot of help and if you require it, offer their support for a fee. 'pfSense' even sells hardware boxes with their software pre-installed and configured.

Living Room / Re: Anyone here using a standing desk?
« on: July 25, 2018, 11:29 PM »
You can also get desks that have long legs already. You can sit on a equally for that height adjusted chair. And if you want to use that desk standing, you just get off the chair and move it out of your way.

Much simpler approach for your company perhaps. As a benefit, the drawers in such a desk are also higher up, so you don't need to bend as much down (for those with having problems with their back, while the contents of drawers are still easily accessible when sitting behind such a desk. Easier to clean below such a desk as well.

Here is the best example of such a desk I could find on short notice.

How big is the set of files you want to monitor?  Because in most cases (and with a proper filter) 'Process Monitor' from SysInternals can show you your (set of) monitored file(s), which process has doing the modifying and when the modifying did occurred. It doesn't prevent any modification though.

Perhaps auditing software is more of a fit to your request. A free solution from Netwrix.

In combination with proper ACL settings on the set of files you wish to keep an eye on, auditing software might be the only thing you need. If I remember correctly, 4wd mentioned recently that 'SetACL Studio' could now be used for free. More precisely, the creator of the software provides a license code with which you can register SetACL Studio gratis. An alternative piece of freeware, that also happens to be portable as well, could be: NTFS Permissions Tools (is from China, but has an English interface).

*   edit: added NTFS Permissions Tools link.
* edit2: added SetACL link

The Hirens BootCD project is under new management. Well, it is now maintained by volunteers who only use freeware/open-source tools (and some trial versions) for repair from lots and lots of different types of errors that Windows subjects its users to.

You can make a bootable pen drive with the iso they provide. To be prepared for calamities, I created myself such a pendrive and it boots very fast into a Windows 10 PE (x64) environment. Afterwards the 16GByte pendrive was filled with 6 to 7 GByte from my personal PortableApps collection of tools. And I guess about 70% of the added tools works as well. The ones that don't, report that prerequisites are missing, which is to be expected from a PE environment.

Booting takes about 20 to 25 seconds (my pendrive is a USB3 model, but it is slow as hell) when connected to an USB3 port on an APU-based AMD (A10-6800K) system with 8GByte of RAM. Even on a nothing fancy PC, it boots up fast. If push comes to shove, it could even be good enough as a daily driver from the get-go, especially when you just want to browse a bit.

The included repair tools are quite impressive, but it can also do backup and forensic tasks as well. And it is more than likely this PE environment can help you fix your Windows 7 issues.

On another note:
While the interface of Windows 10 is not everyone's cup of tea, it is not that bad in my opinion. Having said that, Google reveals quite a lot of links that can make your Windows 10 installation look and "feel" like Windows 7. In that sense you would have the best of 2 worlds and you could get rid of dual-boot altogether. From Gizmo's Freeware or find your favorite link with this search term: make Windows 10 look and feel like Windows 7

It's been a while since I checked out GitLab (but they do both cloud and on-prem, right?)

Yes in both cases. Last Friday I started running a docker image of GitLab (Community Edition) on a test server in my own network, just to see for myself what the fuss is about. So far it leaves a good impression, but you can expect to lose quite some time configuring it. The enterprise edition has more features, so that will be even more "fun".

Although it is more work, I would recommend to do a GitLab installation from the ground up. The Docker solution (or similar software) is decent, but I barely see how Docker is helping me for my particular use-cases.

In any case, GitLab does work on-premise. Documentation is handled well. As far as I have seen it at least. But don't expect it to run on a Windows server any time soon, if at all. It looks like it will be a Linux and MacOS only product. On my Ubuntu Server 18.04 LTS computer it works fine. The Docker website indicates that there is a 'Docker for Windows' application available (which doesn't work on Windows Server 2012 R2), but that it not officially supported. And if you do have 'Docker for Windows' running on your system, the GitLab website says that they will not support GitLab with that software anyway. In short, if you want to run GitLab on Windows, you are on your own.

Well, it is possible to configure the web server being used by this private WordPress to only allow access from certain domains or IP addresses. This is not the default setting from any piece of web server software, in my experience.  If the computer that runs the web server software is patched and configured securely, then it will be quite difficult to access the content of this private WordPress instance. A knowledgeable intruder with access to (un)documented back doors on either the web server or WordPress will still find a way in.

Private post on a 3rd party WordPress site, which might or might not have sufficient patches/security in place for that website or the server(s) that site runs on, could be much more quickly compromised than you would expect and therefore should not be considered private under practically any circumstance.

Nowadays I do have the impression that most breaches are made by persons who want to make money of the information they acquire. So if those posts are made on a obscure website with hardly any traffic, than it is likely the case that the financial gain is too low for the amount of effort those persons would have to spent for acquiring your private posts.

The above is valid for anything you couple with the internet, not only WordPress. Applying also fail2ban and 2 factor authentication systems to a web site will improve the chances that your posts stay private considerably. A WordPress website often uses a MySQL database for storing content. If it is an option, storing your private posts sufficiently encrypted (AES256 and/or RSA2048) into such a database will again improve the chance that your posts remain private, even if a breach does occur.

Still, the best thing to do keeping things private is to not post those things on the internet at all.

Living Room / Re: Abusing Emoji on your computer filesystem
« on: July 06, 2018, 07:41 AM »

I think it is. FireFox 60.0.2 (32-bit) is showing these emoji's as preview just fine. 

General Software Discussion / Re: More Ads in Windows 10
« on: July 06, 2018, 07:37 AM »
And this is part of software that you now have to pay for first?

If the operating system was still free, then I could imagine Microsoft wanting to recuperate their investments by showing ads in their OS and/or apps. Doing the same in software that is paid for, that is adding insult to injury imo. On the other hand, if you have a Windows 10 computer that for any reason is not activated, Microsoft should be showing you ads. Then they would recuperate funds with legal and illegal Windows 10 setups. If they would add the option to pay for getting rid of the ads, I would be much more understanding about this whole ordeal.

Next questions could be: Are these ads only part of Windows 10 Home editions? Are Windows 10 Enterprise editions and/or LTSB/LTSC editions free from this garbage?

The first time Oracle made their XE offering public, it was Oracle version 10 and it was limited to 4GByte of user-created data (system tables didn't count). While that may seem a lot, it isn't. The web interface of that database was actually very enjoyable. Then a new version of XE came out, same limitations, but now based on Oracle version 11. That was quite a big letdown, compared with the ease of the previous version.

Never looked back at the XE offering anymore. Microsoft made a similar offering with their SQL Server with a much bigger limit of 10GByte of user-created data and as such was (much) more interesting. However, I did follow the link provided by KodeZwerg to see if Oracle based their XE offering on their Oracle version 12 database software (which is also around for quite a while now). Unfortunately that is not the case, but Oracle did increase the limit to 11GByte of user-created data.


You could use 'Floriant POS' for inventory management. It is actually intended to be a complete POS solution for restaurants (so it is also able to predict your inventory, based on the ingredients that make up each item on the menu). Also does time-tracking for employees etc.

Last time I looked, it was open-source and free to use. It is Java based client-server setup, but can be run on one system. And if I remember correctly, you can select between several different databases like MySQL, PostgeSQL, Oracle and MS-SQL Server. The first two you can use without paying.

A solution for Outlook? Nope.

But your second request could be solved by visiting this link. Didn't check if it works with Outlook, I try to prevent installation of that software wherever I can.

Then you might be interested in SnapRAID. It has tickled my interest, if I'm honest. It promises practically all the speed advantages of a software RAID setup, but none of the disadvantages.

Not a fan of RAID in general though. Mainly because I have inherited a software RAID setup (Linux), that often took so much time to rebuild that it would have been easier/faster to start from scratch from a backup. A few times even 48 hours or thereabout. And during those rebuilds you can't use that setup, so people started to work around it altogether. But the boss drunk from the cool-aid: "but data is much safer, because you can rebuild". So I must keep it alive.

In my view, the only thing RAID is good for: speed   
But when (not if) problems arise, it will take much more effort and money to access data from drives that were part of a RAID setup....and that is if you are lucky. Most of the time content is not salvageable. Granted, that is a bigger problem with hardware RAID solutions than with software RAID solutions. Hardware RAID is practically always faster than a software RAID setup, so such solutions remain preferred by most. Yet those persons/companies forget that they must have a redundant identical hardware setup ready if they take their data serious. Or at least double the amount of (identical!) RAID cards, because if you don't, you easily reduce your already slim chance of getting any data back by 80%.

In short, a heavy price tag to slap on data. Companies that absolutely need all the speed for their systems to be able to do their core business without losing money, should consider RAID. All others can wait a second or two more for their data. Besides, nowadays more and more node-based software is appearing that is very fast from itself and truly excels when the network they are connected on is super fast. No hardware RAID can beat those speeds and these systems only need standard machines with standard OS's that are relatively easy to repair/exchange, without downtime. NoSQL databases like Apache Cassandra are a good example of this.

RAID is a yesteryear mindset. But, if you must, I do think that the concept behind SnapRAID is worthy of consideration.

Find And Run Robot / Re: Allow display of file size
« on: June 23, 2018, 10:35 AM »
It is my guess that FARR takes the file size content of any file from the Windows file system. So you might have to think differently about the solution to your problem. According to my Google-fu, there are many requests for showing the exact file size in Windows Explorer, but not much answers.

Microsoft tells us that there is no way to change this.

A bit of digging revealed: SizeInBytes which is a tool that makes Explorer show the exact file size. While this software is free, it does require you to have a license for it's parent software SmartFTP...which is costly at 79.95 USD (the cheapest edition).

This is a long shot, but you could get a copy of Directory Opus, configure it so that it takes over the function of Windows Explorer and make files show their exact byte size that way. It is also not cheap at 85 AUD (Australian Dollar). There is a lite version of Directory Opus at half that price, but I didn't look if that version can replace Windows Explorer or not.

You might have guessed it, this has been a pet peeve of mine for as long as I use Windows. Microsoft calls this lack of configurability 'simplicity', while I think it should have been a Windows setting from the get-go. In Windows XP you still had an option to show everything in KB, but that has been removed since Windows Vista, which rounds up and down in very weird ways sometimes. Almost all 3rd party file managers show you the file size the way you want it to, but that won't help you with FARR. 

General Software Discussion / Re: Wanted: Simple EML viewer
« on: June 22, 2018, 10:18 PM »
Mailstore Home is light nor heavy and looks likely too fancy when you start using it. However, it can import all your .eml messages (and attachments!), from which it creates a database that allows you to search quickly through messages and attachments. Once imported you can view the selected message as they are intended. Copy-paste info, attachments etc.

It is freeware and also available as a PortableApp (but you must have the correct .NET version installed in Windows), if that is your thing. Anyway, searches are fast with more search options than I have seen in any mail client, it can even act as a "mail client", but only for receiving messages from an account on a mail server. Myself, I use it for keeping a mail archive spanning over ten years. Most days I receive over more than 100 messages, often with one or more attachments. Searches still only take a few seconds.

Once you have set it up as you like it, you will quickly wonder how you ever managed without it. No other association than being a happy user.

You used the troubleshooter? From Windows? That feature has not helped me once in all the time I have been using Windows. Well, I must add that I don't even bother opening it anymore since Windows XP. It was dreadful then, and from the OP I gather that things haven't improved.

We clone an issue in Jira (Clone++) and change the task to 'sub-task' and add reproduction files/documentation to this sub-task (for auditing purposes). By doing this the time tracking is not affected, the intended dev and tester are notified (by mail) about any change and we can keep track of the changes in the code on a per-issue basis (because of the coupling with our Content Versioning System).

Granted, it may not be easy to change a workflow in Jira, but it isn't rocket science either and once you "grok" it, you can bend Jira very much to your will.

Jira does like to sell you their extra services, but still, there is more than enough free and commercially licensed information available that allows you to "grok" workflows in Jira. I can't help but think that you are in some way related to the product you recommend and it may be the best thing since sliced bread, but with a bit of study you can really do a lot(!) within Jira itself.

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