Intel’s Galileo Ardunio and Powershell

Intel’s Galileo is a pretty neat piece of kit. However it won’t always connect on the same COM port (typically COM3 or COM4). The only way the tutorials tell you to check this is via a menu deep inside the Control Panel if you’re on Windows. The good news is that there’s a pair of simple commands in Powershell that give you access to what you need.

Get-WMIObject Win32_SerialPort | Select-Object Name,DeviceID,Description

This will give you the device number, description and COM port.

However, the device is half baked. Buggy firmware that won’t take new sketches after 5-10 uploads, lack of even a basic tone() library, and serveo library support so bad it might as well not even be there. Had it for 48 hours and I’m returning it for a Beaglebone Black. On the upside, I got to wander around the house talking about stuff like “pulse width modulation” and feeling smart while I complain about how bad the Galileo is.

As cool as the project is, Intel, you really let me down this time. The board has been out for four months, since October, and there hasn’t been a single firmware or Linux software update. It’s February for crying out loud. Round 2 is with TI and their Beaglebone..

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Red Green Show now on YouTube (Legally) in all it’s glory

Friend of mine sent me this:

I listed out all the play lists for my dad for the red green show because youtube’s ui on the playlists is kinda funky, here it is, every episode by season play list.

91 season,
92 season,
93 season,
94 season,
95 season,
96 season,
97 season,
98 season,
99 season,
00 season,
01 season,
02 season,
03 season,
04 season,
05 season,

if you put these on and then connect to chrome cast it will just play the whole play list even if you shut your laptop off which is awesome.

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Removing the redundant “google doodle” in Chrome

Sometime this fall Google pushed out a change that puts the google logo/search bar in the tabs home page. Clicking on the search bar in the middle of the page is just a dirty trick, it redirects you to the omnibar anyways. And it takes up a ton of screen space. Lame. here is the fix.

In the address bar type:
On that page, search for (using Ctrl+F) “Instant Extended API“.

Then select disable and restart chrome.

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Setting up Windows Hyper-V Server 2012 R2 in a workgroup

Setting up Windows Hyper-V Server 2012 R2 in a workgroup

All of Microsoft’s server stuff is designed to work within an already existing Active Directory environment. Most home users don’t have an Active Directory server, unless you are running SAMBA 4 or higher (Linux product, advanced users only). So additional configuration is needed to get server products running and talking to eachother in a Workgroup environment.

Three main steps here

A) Setup Hyper-V Server 2012 R2 to accept connections
B) Setup Remote Server Management on desktop machine
C) Setup Hyper-V Management on desktop machine Continue reading

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Intel i217-V network drivers for Windows Server 2012 R2

Intel can eat a bag of dicks. Here is the driver you need to run Server 2012 on the i217-V chipset.

For some reason they released the i217-V (desktop) and i217-LM (server) versions of their gigabit ethernet chip. They are the same chip. The only difference is that the -V has support for Win7, Win8 and -LM has support for WS2008, WS2012, i.e. desktop drivers and server drivers. The idea is that you can’t run Windows server OS’es on desktop hardware and you will buy the server hardware instead. You should probably do this if you’re a business so that you have official support and your boss won’t fire you. If you’re a home user/hobbyist, you’re going to want your hardware to work with your OS. So let’s fix that.

So we’re going to move some lines around in the config file (.ini) and comment out others. I’ve already done this, you are ready to go. This should work with any H87 or Z87 chipset motherboard with the i217-V gigabit ethernet chipset/network chip.

You can ( download the file(s) here. 8.4MB zip file ).

This only works for WS2012 and Hyper-V Server 2012 (and the R2 versions). NDIS63 folder is for Windows 8/2012, NDIS62 is for Windows 7/2008 R2 and NDIS61 is for Windows Vista/2008, but the same concept applies there too.

Thanks to users JoeSchmoe007 on HardOCP and Ivo Beerens on


Run these commands -AS ADMINISTRATOR- from the command line to disable driver integrity checks (this lets you sneak past intel’s bullshit)

Full post under the cut~

Continue reading

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DIY Bicycle Pannier – for $12 or less

So as it turns out, if you have an existing bag, converting it in to a pannier is a cost-effective solution. Otherwise it’s probably better to just go buy a new one.

Of note, I am using a special bike rack, it uses the skewer instead of rack mount holes, which is important if you have a road bike that is missing these holes. In particular I am using the Axiom Streamliner Road DLX Rack which has worked out very well for me over the past 200 miles or so.
Total cost:
Bag: $22.00 - a Rothco model, I’ve been very impressed with the quality
Mounting hardware: $11.67 – Home Depot
inverted “drunken octopus wants to fight you” robe hooks, ~$3.25 ea

Top mount view, my rack appears to have been bent in shipment, works fine though

vertical view from top of bicycle rack

Pannier view from top

Side mount, the bag’s side pockets are extra floppy

First test fit of bicycle pannier

Attempting to solve the floppy side pocket problem with some cardboard, first functional cargo test from the corner store

Resolved the floppy side pocket problem by tying the ends together with a crude draw string system, solved the heel strike issue I was running in to.

Inside mounting system. Found some “mending brackets” with roughly the same bolt pattern as the hooks, you can’t see it but there’s a second one sandwiched on the other side between the flap and the main bag, it may do a good job of spreading the load, or else it will fail catastrophically on a major road, get tangled in my spokes and kill me, only time will tell.

Not pictured is a piece of wood bracing the bottom corners of the bag apart on the inside, seems to improve stability and keep the corners from rolling in to the spokes of the rear wheels.

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TP-Link TL-WR1043ND DD-WRT No WAN fix

For whatever reason TP-Link introduced a new feature that turns off the WAN port when you do a firmware upgrade. This is to help with MAC address migration or some other obscure thing. It doesn’t help us, however. Generally if your S/N serial number on the bottom of the unit says “S/N 1xxxxxxxxx” then you should be able to flash to DD-WRT directly. Newer models, introduced in April 2012 and commonly found on Newegg and Amazon by August 2012 have a serial number that says “S/N 12xxxxxxx”. These devices with the 12xxxxx serial need to follow these instructions:

>Download the necessary files

What we’re going to do

A: Get a good version of TP-Link Firmware installed on your router
1: Install a goofy German TP-Link firmware with a loophole in it
2: Install DD-WRT (or OpenWRT)
3: Finished!

Full details below the break

Continue reading

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Spinning down USB drives in linux

Some of the commercial solutions like the “Passport” and “MyBook” USB drives have spin down logic built in to avoid excessive wear and tear. I recently came across a steal on newegg for a bare bones Intel D2500 (atom) based nettop, and decided to get one and plug some external drives in to it, and finally make use of them as part of an oddly configured file server.

The downside, it turns out, is that Ubuntu 12 Server (precision) only comes with the absolute bare bones software to be a functional system. You’re expected to install anything you might need, like say, SSH or Apache2. Servers don’t have much use for USB drive utilities that spin down drives. Actually, it does come with hdparm, which is actually designed to spin down local drives, but is incapable of spinning down external drives, which is what I needed.

Now, to be fair, the official Ubuntu help Wiki does have this page, but it’s rather obtuse and perhaps overly complex. It has a complicated looking script in the middle, but really the only two piece of information you need are

  • The ‘sg3-utils’ package (sudo apt-get install sg3-utils)
  • sg_start –pc=3 /dev/sda (or in my case, sdc)

I was able to then add a single line to my crontab file after testing,

0 0,4,8,12,16,20 * * * sg_start –pc=3 /dev/sdc #sleeps external sdc (250gb) drive every 4 hrs

And now I don’t have to worry about burning up my already old drives in their unventilated enclosures!

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