Monday, December 31, 2007

"Search for word or phrase in a file" - Windows flaw

Microsofts MSN property is far behind in online search; taking a far 3rd position. To further demonstrate how far behind Microsoft is in Search, they're own OS fails to adequately search documents.

When performing a search for "A word or phrase in a file", the feature has had several flaws. A big issue is that Windows outright ignores files is doesn't recognize. So unless you're looking for a simple Office document, you're out of luck.

There is a work-around, but it takes considerable steps, here are two potential methods:

a)
1.Click Start, and then click Search (or point to Search, and then click For Files or Folders).
2.Click Change preferences, and then click With Indexing Service (for faster local searches).
3.Click Change Indexing Service Settings (Advanced). Note that you do not have to turn on the Index service.
4.On the toolbar, click Show/Hide Console Tree.
5.In the left pane, right-click Indexing Service on Local Machine, and then click Properties.
6.On the Generation tab, click to select the Index files with unknown extensions check box, and then click OK.
7.Close the Indexing Service console.

or B)
Set the FilterFilesWithUnknownExtensions DWORD value to 1 in the following registry key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\ContentIndex


ASP file searching STILL fails


Even beyond that, Windows may need explicit instructions to search specific file types. In order to change that behavior, the default handler of a specific file type needs to be set:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.asp\PersistentHandler

to {Default} REGSZ value of:
{5E941D80-BF96-11CD-B579-08002B30BFEB}

Note that a reboot will be needed after this step.

Moving a SQL Server Database

Should your SQL server need to be decommission, it will be necessary to move the databases.

Two method: backup or detach.
Backing up requires an intermediate BAK file, so I prefer the detach method.

1) Shrink the datafile. You can truncate the log by:
    BACKUP LOG dbname WITH TRUNCATE_ONLY
2) Then use the GUI to shrink the log file, or if you know the log file name use: dbcc shrinkfile (file_name)
3) Detach
 sp_detach_db 'dbname'
4) Copy the database to the new server
5) On the new server attach the database:
 sp_attach_db 'dbname','D:\Sqldata\mydbdata.mdf','L:\Sqllog\mydblog.ldf'
6) Repair/fix SQL logins. If new server already has the same named logins, use the below command:
 EXEC sp_change_users_login 'auto_fix', ''


To compliment step 6, you can determine which logins need repair by running a discrepancy check:


select 'EXEC sp_change_users_login ''auto_fix'', ''' + name + ''''
from sysusers su
where hasdbAccess = 1
and not exists ( SELECT 1 FROM master..syslogins sl WHERE su.sid = sl.sid )

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Help and Support and System Information fail to start

A system issue with the Windows applications System Information and Help and Support won't start. (The application processes are msinfo32.exe & helpctr.exe)

The System Information was likely corrupted by an unexpected termination, malware, spyware, virus or the like. It can be recovered by reinstalling System Information and Help and Support services.

Restore Help and Support and System Information by perform the following in command prompt:
net stop helpsvc
cd /d %windir%\pchealth\helpctr\binaries
start /w helpsvc /svchost netsvcs /regserver /install
start /w helpsvc /register

System Information and Help and Support should run correctly now.
Also see: Restoring Windows Original Files

Restoring Windows Original Files

Before running this, you might first try to retsore Windows Help and Support and System Information.

To restore Windows files to the original state run the Windows System File Checker (sfc.exe), with the command:
sfc /scannow

You'll need to run it from the Windows native console, so if you are in Remote Desktop, use the console switch:
%SystemRoot%\system32\mstsc.exe -console

The program will need the original Windows CD. To use a different source directory, i.e. you have a copy of the windows CD in a local folder, change the registry key at:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Setup
Named: SourcePath

For detailed information on using this tool see here.

Windows Firewall can not run because another program or service is running that might use the Network Address Translation component (IPNat.sys)

Windows Networking Firewall failure Error

Upon trying to open and configure the Windows built-in Firewall, you receive the error:
"Windows Firewall can not run because another program or service is running that might use the Network Address Translation component (IPNat.sys)"

Cause is due to settings left in by "Routing and Remote Access" service. Even if the service is stopped, Windows will still report this error because the network card bindings are still being held by RRAS.

Disable RRAS by opening the MMC for it and "Disable Remote Access and Routing". This can also be found by Right-clicking "My Computer", opening the Service and Application node.

By Disabling RRAS in this way, the network protocol interface bindings are removed allowing for the Windows Firewall and Connection Sharing service to take over.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Windows Computer Alias for sharing

Windows natively supports NFS shares through the URI \\server-name \\ip.add.ress. Often though, you want to give the computer a different alias for example:
\\dev.relevantads.com
Or multiple aliases:
\\vss.relevantads.com, \\corp-file-server, \\Printer-Stations, etc.

Typically you would accomplish this you by changing the NetBIOS name to "dev", but instead, you can specifically define the aliases though the registry key:
HKEY_Local_Machine\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanServer\Parameters
Add Value: OptionalNames REG_SZ String: "Alias"
Make it a type REG_MULTI_SZ to support multiple aliases.

Moreover, you can support all aliases; i.e. tell Windows to accept any share request that comes to its IP. This is the registry key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanServer\Parameters
Data Type: DWORD
Value Name: DisableStrictNameChecking
Value: 1

A reboot is necessary (or possibly just restarting the Server | Workstation service) to allow the changes to take effect.

Lastly:
Don't forget that you'll also need File & Printer sharing enable, Firewall off or an exception for File sharing, and that the alias name must resolve either through DNS or a custom HOSTS declaration.

Computer Browser is stopping and won't start

Upon tying to start the Computer Browser, it immediately returns:
"computer browser service on local computer started and then stopped"

Try:

1) In the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE subtree, go to the following subkey:

SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Browser\Parameters\MaintainServerList

2) Change MaintainServerList to either Auto or Yes.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Task Manager, CMD, Regedit Virus

Once every 6 months or so, I do get a virus. I came across this one from Limewire.

Symptoms: regedit, cmd & task manager lost! "in use by another program"

After using Ad-Aware and Microsoft Defender, my system was reported as clean; only clearing out some cookies.

Several sites report the problem: Cannot open task manager; task manager fails, regedit and cmd same issue.

The virus takes hold of these application pointers, fortunately I use an application as a replacement for command prompt so I was able to source the issue.

Resolution:
Two files need to renamed/deleted:
b.exe (in Windows root folder) and svchost.exe located in Startup. The virus uses a trusted name (svchost.exe) but puts the file in the Startup folder.


Background:
I don't use any memory resident virus prevention software. I rarely come across malware, however when looking for a software crack, questionable software, or the like. In this case, I downloaded something from Limewire. Many of the listings on Limewire these days are viruses and such, so you do need to be careful. I believe the software operates as a Limewire distributor for the virus itself. I cannot find anything it does beyond redistribution of itself.

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