August 2007 Archives

* Waves hand *

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Even though it may seem as if I've vanished from the face of the earth, I have not. Just like the Mars rovers were shut down a while ago due to storms, I'm laying low and flying under the radar as much as possible. This includes disappearing every now and then and generally working on lots of topics and projects behind the public scene often known as my blog.

Yesterday I called in to work to check whether a schedule for September had been released and much to my surprise it had. Approximately 48 hours past the deadline and I still don't have it in my hands but I hope to gain access to it tomorrow as I work an early shift. Once I have the long overdue schedule, I'll be updating the sidebar to include that information.

Privacy and Disclosure

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I will not be disclosing any more (or new) information on this blog in regard to some current issues and situations. If you feel you are on a need-to-know basis, ask me personally and you may even get an answer.

If you are someone that I don't consider to be part of that very small circle of people that need-to-know or with whom I feel fine sharing things, rumors or statements will be neither confirmed nor denied, but just ignored.

3K Placeholder

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This is a placeholder for the 3000th entry on this blog since it was first published back in August 2001. Yes, believe it or not, but FK has been going for over 6 years now, and I intend to add another 6 years to it at least.

I'm not yet sure whether I will replace the text in this entry marking the 3000 milestone with something else, or just leave it in as it is. Time will tell, won't it?

Bearforce1 : lift off!

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I definitely like my partners more female - a lot more female - but I can understand why this video is a huge hit on YouTube right now. It's well made, has handsome guys (or should that be gays?) in it and it "borrows" heavily from the some of the best music and artists ever known to mankind. Enjoy.

For those of you "shocked" by this video : I'm rather surprised you're still reading, and am really wondering how you ended up on my blog, seeing that I'm very much a liberal and open minded live and let live kind of blogger.


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As I was going through some paperwork, gathering all things related to work and what they paid me over the past two months, I suddenly notice something peeking out from under a stack of paper. It looks like a bill, it smells like a bill and even though I didn't try licking it or eating it, I'm sure it would have tasted like one too. Unfortunately, it turned out to be an unpaid one :(

I took at look at the amount - ouch - and a look at the due date - ouch again - and made the payment immediately. I don't know how forgiving the government is, but I suspect I ain't seen the last of that bill. Serves me right for not being as organized as I used to be. Better clean up my act, which I'll be spending quite some time on tomorrow for starters. I should have it all back in order before Wednesday.

Untying the knot, the good way

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I've never considered marriage something for me. Even if I were seeing someone - which I'm not, I think marriage is an artificial happening, done to please the outside world. Sure enough, if you like all the ceremony surrounding marriages, it may be for you, but I never got the whole idea about getting some official paper that states that two people love each other. If it's about the legal paperwork, there are a bunch of other ways to accomplish the same and that being said, I for one am very happy that same sex people can legally marry in some (but not yet enough) countries.

If you want to get married, do so... but a lot of people also break up and then end up with a divorce lawyer. Who knows, maybe you have been considering the option of divorce, maybe you even looked up Divorce Lawyers online yet. All I'm saying is that you are prepared to tie the knot as they say, and you've put a lot of preparation and effort into that, you have to be realistic and take into calculation that the same knot may need untying someday in the future.

I've been in a long relationship before, and while we were not married, we were living together and then we split up. How do these things happen? Apart from some paperwork, there were no problems between the two of us, and truth be said : I often don't understand that two people can give each other such a hard time, but maybe I just have a too positive look on things.

If you're looking at a complicated situation, and you want to unravel the closely knitted fabric that both of you been working on for years, you don't just take scissors and start cutting. A lawyer that specializes in divorces may be a good source of information and help along the way. Don't use them to hurt the other party though, revenge may be a sweet dish - at least that's what's being said - but you never know who gets the bigger portion during the final serving.

Looking back and ahead

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I've got a bunch of bank statements in front of me and I should really get around to filing them correctly, but I've been putting it off for weeks now. I know that if I delay it any further, the chance that some of them will get lost increases a lot, yet I don't feel like doing it today. Instead I spent some time playing Hobowars where I've risen from a "in the gutter" level 1 to a "a little less in the gutter" level 6 over the past 2 days. I noticed a friend of mine joined as well, but I've got no clue yet whom it is.

While playing I was also taking a look at my current investments and the goals I had set for the end of the year. It seems very unlikely that I'll be able to meet them this year, mostly due to the car accident at the beginning of 2007 that has set me back quite a lot financially. All things taken into consideration, I'm at 68% of the goal I had predicted to reach at the end of 2007. Sure enough, there are a couple of months left in the year, but as there are no major increases or setback to be seen in the near future, that percentage won't rise or drop too much by December 31st 2007. For 2008 I have set a 17% increase over the goals of 2007, so I'll definitely know what to do if I want to make up for 2007 and make the raise for 2008 :-)

I don't know how all of you deal with finances, but I take a detailed look at them a couple of times a year, to see where I'm at and where I'm heading.

While installing the latest patches for my OS, I remembered reading about an extension for my mail client. I hopped over to the Mozilla site and grabbed a copy of the 0.5 release of Lightning, a calendar plugin for Thunderbird (there also is a standalone version named Sunbird). I never used nor needed a calendar for private use, but after using it extensively at work where I'm forced to use the Outlook calendar, I am convinced it has benefits. So when I learned about the Lightning plugin, I just had to download it and try.

Installation is easy as hell, and I already added my first "event" to the calendar. Time will tell whether or not I actually will use it, but as I open my mail client frequently, I think the current setup is the best approach to find out.

Live the Hobo life in Hobowars

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Let me guess, you're relatively successful in life, yet you wondered what it would be to live life as a hobo? Is it the freedom, the roaming through the streets or the unexpectedness of their lives?

Find out, and play Hobowars! I've been exploring the city, attacking the Trolley Boy (hey, I need a cart to put all my stuff in) and playing slot machines since yesterday. And... woot, I've even trained in Primary School and gained some intelligence. How's that for an accomplishment? Hop over, create a free account and we'll explore the city together :)

Unrelated and just for my own reference : meeting on August 22nd, 12h15.

I sure hope not, coz if you did, better skip this entry :)

Boomshine - 12 levels, make the dots explode in a chain reaction. Simple? Sure!

Direct TV : a dream come true?

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I don't know if you know the hit 57 channels (and nothing on) by Bruce Springsteen, but I rarely think there is nothing on TV. In fact, if I had more time I might watch more shows and especially documentaries. Now, in Europe we're still lagging behind when compared with Direct Satellite TV that's on offer in the States. Man, I'd love to have one of those ultra sharp wide screen TV HD sets at home, total surround system and every channel you can dream of available at the flick of a button on the remote.

While I don't care much about sports on TV - though I must admit that women hockey for instance can be quite erm... captivating - I think with 185 channels there has to be something that is right up my sleeve, wouldn't you think? Let's take a look at the offers from Direct TV for instance, shall we? A ton of Music Channels, the most interesting for me would be 70's and 80's, and I think the Smooth Jazz channel could be something to enjoy as well. Then there is of course the SCI FI Channel, Comedy Central and Cartoon Network. Add The Learning Channel (TLC) and The Science Channel or National Geographic and I'm probably hooked for life.Oh, and that's probably even before I discover G4Tech TV :)

Yeah, there is something for everyone with DirecTV Satellite I guess. Maybe I should really start looking into the options for HD digital TV over here, though I doubt it can be compared with what US Direct has on offer.

Win32.OnlineGames - The Closing


From the Spybot team I received this mail as I was asleep :


thank you for reporting and sending in the pfmapi16.dll for analysis. It appears to be a false positive. The upcoming detection update should not flag the file as Win32.OnlineGames anymore. Please contact us if the file should still be marked as malicious.

From my customer this mail came in : Around 9:30 the file was still marked as infected, however after the latest update, around 15:30 the infection was silently cleared and my system was reported as clean. Thanks for your help!

Everyone happy I guess...

Win32.OnlineGames - the sequel

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The other file (mentioned in a previous post) that was detected as infected by Win32.OnlineGames has indeed been confirmed a false positive by the spybot team. I just returned from my client where I ran another scan, forwarded all the reports and the file to myself and I just finished reporting my findings and suspicion to the spybot team.

It's entirely possible that since the issue is known already that it'll be fixed in the update that's scheduled to be released tomorrow already fixes our false positive, but it could be that ours is a different one that needs analyzing as well, so I'll see what happens next.

Win32.OnlineGames false positive?

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On Saturday evening I received a mail from one of the people that calls me in a couple of times a year to check the computers of his wife and him, and he wrote that he was possibly infected as Spybot S&D generated a warning on one of his scans. I've worked with Spybot S&D quite a lot and find it one heck of a tool, so I took his mail rather serious. I proposed to come over Sunday afternoon after working an early shift, to see what the problem was, and how to get rid of it.

Since I asked him to send me all information about the possible virus/trojan before coming over I packed my VundoFix tools and updated HiJack!This and all my other anti-spyware tools. When I arrived sure enough S&D reported a win32.onlinegames trojan to reside in pfmapi16.dll. I ran HiJack!This, took a look at the logfile created and found no trace of Vundo infection. I ran a specific scan for Vundo, but that too was negative.

Even after several attempts to get S&D to clean or remove the trojan, it remained present. I decided to verify the infection and sent the file to Virustotal for a second opinion. Out of 30 scanners that analyzed the pfmapi16.dll file, none reported it as being infected. Strange, very strange. This leads me to believe that a false positive is generated on the DLL file, but as I promised my "client" I would verify on other machines. Note : detection for Win32.OnlineGames was added to Spybot S&D on August 1st 2007.

I called B&H to see if I could pop in and verify the possible false positive on any of their machines and they said I was welcome. D&M were also on their way, so it would be a nice meeting. I checked two machines, no Win32.OnlineGames trojans found, but those are english XP machines, not German ones. When I checked my machines, none of the S&D installs gave me a trojan infection. This only makes me more convinced that there is a possible false positive on a german XP version in the latest detection updates.

Today I found a post on the forum where another German S&D uses claims to have a potential false positive on a file named Ctrsct16.dll, which also resides in the system32 folder. He has sent the file in for further analysis and I'll be doing the same tomorrow, as I think we are both seeing the same incorrect detection.

Will be continued...

Trouble in Ubuntu paradise

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Another rather technical entry, but as I ran into some trouble and had a very hard time getting it fixed, I can only assume others may run into the same, hence more information is better.

I run Ubuntu on my laptop and had the superb idea to install the AVG free antivirus program, which totally failed. After downloading the package, I ran into an error that told me the file could not be opened. When I launched the package-manager again, it complained that the package avg75fld was broken and couldn't be found. Running sudo apt-get clean from a terminal window didn't fix a thing and my package manager remained as broken as it could be.

After searching the ubuntu forums, I was finally able to get rid of the error and the broken package by running sudo dpkg -P --force-all avg75fld from a terminal window.

Note : according to the thread in the forums, one should not use this option lightly as forcing a remove could lead to all kinds of problems, so it is clearly a case of user beware!

Anyway I took the plunge and got rid of the avg package. While the scanner performs well on most windows systems, I'd suggest steering clear of it on linux!

Beware of scammers!

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I just received the following mail, at first look from someone interested in purchasing one of my domain names :


I would like to purchase your domain (domain name only, not any site or content).

If you are interested in selling please provide an asking price or we can submit an offer if you prefer.

Thank you,

Mark Hayes

Sounds like a legit mail from a potential buyer, doesn't it? Well, if this buyer was a professional, I'm sure we'd find something on the internet about him, especially as he claims to be in the business of buying and selling domain names. However, the first two entries... point out that he's a fraud. Add another fraud entry to your list Mark Hayes : we're getting the word out and you'll have to switch identity soon.

A game of chess?


It may come as a surprise to some of you, others may have seen it coming...

I think you all recall the soap opera called work (see Whistlers and Clows, episodes 1 to a zillion), and things have not really become more stable. I went in for testing last month and while results are available, those are being kept from us for whatever reason some may have. Yesterday I called my chef and asked him directly what was the status on the test results, he said someone higher up the food chain was pulling strings and advised me to talk to that person directly today. I agreed, even though I've never met the man before.

Today The Puppeteer called in a couple of minutes before the meeting was scheduled to start, claiming he couldn't make it. My chef called me and explained. I replied that I would call the woman who actually administered the tests, had a talk with me afterwards and who would analyze the results. He agreed and said he didn't have any problems with that, so I made the call, only to be told that as long as The Puppeteer and Those In Charge 1 don't make a public statement, no test results are to be given out.

I don't know what game people are playing, but I don't like being a piece in game of chess, where someone moves me as they see fit. Other developments this week have pissed me off in a major way, and most of the colleagues in the same function seem to think alike. We're en route to disaster and the roller coaster is picking up speed, and if one more mail, decision or statement is made without thinking it through, the brakes are off and the conflict could become uncontrollable.

I'm not saying what I'll be doing - or rather what I won't be doing - but those of you that can make a meaningful sentence using some of the following words know where I may be heading :

job opening elsewhere conflict end final straw decided opportunity take

I'm so smart

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I really am, it just doesn't really show ;) Do you recall me writing that I couldn't find my power adapter and wireless network card yesterday? Well, today I cleaned out the car once again, I looked all over the garage, then turned my desk upside down... nothing. I can't really believe that I threw out equipment worth quite a few euro, yet it's nowhere to be found.

Anyway... I found it. It was right in my face, on the top of my kitchen counter, in a plastic bag. Go figure! I'm so smart, lol.

Lol, I'm such a dork

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Since I have to head out to work early tomorrow, I figured I might as well pop the laptop in the car once more and do some wardriving and scanning while I travel to work. As it's been a long while since I did some scanning, I wanted to prep the laptop tonight to see if everything was still easy to set up and configure. I've found my laptop, I found both antenna's but I can't seem to locate my extra wireless card, nor the external power supply.

I went downstairs and checked the trunk of the car, but there's nothing there. I checked upstairs, but even after turning my place upside down, I can't find the parts I need. Last chance is that I've thrown everything in the garage as I cleaned out the car a couple of months ago.

I may run down again in a couple of minutes to check, but right now I've got a very interesting documentary about spiders and silk spinning animals running on TV. I've seen it before, yet it remains fascinating.

Cheap renewing, I vote yes!

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I just got a mail stating that some of my domain names needed to be renewed, so I headed over to my registrar to check which ones needed my attention. I found 5 domains that needed to be renewed soon and I decided to drop one and renew four. As I was almost ready to check out and pay for my purchase I had the common sense to check online whether there were no promotional codes that I could use to lower the total cost. A quick browse gave me the code PETE2 that took off 20% of my order (only valid on orders over $40). Yay!

If you are a GoDaddy customer and about to renew a bunch of domain names, log in and enter promo code PETE2 to save :

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About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from August 2007 listed from newest to oldest.

July 2007 is the previous archive.

September 2007 is the next archive.

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