esSJae's Virtualization Blog

Virtualization and other IT topics

Dell Wireless TouchPad

Posted by essjae on April 23, 2014

I purchased the Dell Wireless Touchpad sometime last year after I moved my primary workstation to Windows 8.  I didn’t really start using it much until lately.

delltouchpad

I’ve found it’s a great add-on to the mouse and keyboard when working with Windows 8 on a multi-screen setup.

I mainly use it for the left and right edge sweep to get to the Charms bar or to switch between programs.  I wouldn’t give up my mouse for this, but it’s definitely a value add for only $30.

 

 

 

 

Charms Bar

charms

Posted in Accessories, Dell, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Windows 8 Tweaks Part 2

Posted by essjae on April 22, 2014

in my earlier post,  Windows 8: Tweaks, I mentioned a Registry fix for the fat border issue with Windows 8.

I’ve found a simpler solution, there is a little tool, Tiny Windows Borders for Windows 8

This is a GUI interface for adjusting the Border Width and Border Padding for Windows 8.x.  Easier than messing with RegEdit!

tinywindowsborders

Also, if you want to slim down those outrageous title bars in Windows 8, the process is simple as well.

Right-Click the desktop, select Personalize, Click Display on the left side of the Personalization Window. (Per feedback, I’m including more pictures in my posts.)

display-cp

Next, under Change only the text size, select Title Bars and reduce the font size to your desired size, even going down to 10 makes a visible difference.

titlebar-cp

 

Also, another thing I like to do after I install Start8 or StartIsBack is to restore the quick launch menu.  I have had this tip on my old website www.essjae.com for a long time, but here it is again.

  • Right-click the Taskbar, select Toolbars–>New Toolbar.
  • In Folder text box copy and paste the following:
        %userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch
  • Right-click the Taskbar, uncheck Lock the Taskbar, and right-click on the new Quick Launch toolbar. Uncheck Show Text and Show Title, click View–>Small Icons
  • Drag the toolbar divider all the way to the left of the taskbar to position it next to the Windows Orb, adjust the spacing on the taskbar as necessary
  • End result:     quicklaunch
  • Note: the default quick launch is pretty slim, most of the icons above were manually added

Posted in Computers, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dell 7×40, e-port advanced, dual external monitors==blank screen

Posted by essjae on March 28, 2014

I recently purchased a new e7440 for an employee and swapped out her old e6410.  She has an e-port+ advanced dock and 2 22″ monitors.  The setup worked great for years.

Shortly after she started using the e7440 the secondary monitor seem to go to sleep. Power cycling it fixed it.  I swapped the monitors around to see if it was the DVI port on the dock or the monitor.  Same behavior.

I swapped out the dock for a standard e-port+, same behavior.

I finally got around to googling to see if it was just this e7440.  Unfortunately, or fortunately, it’s not.

I found this post E7440 Display Problems (http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/laptop/f/3518/t/19532685.aspx)

While the issue in the post was flickering, this fix resolved my issue as well

http://www.dell.com/support/drivers/us/en/19/DriverDetails/Product/latitude-e7440-ultrabook?driverId=1XFPM&osCode=W864&fileId=3330366653&languageCode=en&categoryId=VI

Fixes & Enhancements

Firmware update to fix flickering screen seen on external monitors attached to dock.
NOTE: For E7440/E7240 only, this update applies when using a dock. If your configuration does not include a dock, the update is not for you and will fail to install
keywords: e7740, e7x40, dell, dock, replicator, blank screen, black screen, firmware

Posted in Computers, Dell, Hardware | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

VirtualBox Maintenance release 4.3.8

Posted by essjae on February 25, 2014

VirtualBox Maintenance release 4.3.8

VirtualBox 4.3.8 (released 2014-02-25)

This is a maintenance release. The following items were fixed and/or added:

  • VMM: more work on improving the emulation of certain MSR registers (e.g. bugs #12224#12544)
  • VMM: fixed a VERR_INVALID_RPL Guru Meditation when booting certain guests (bug #11350)
  • VMM: experimental support for SSE 4.1 / SSE 4.2 passthrough, see the manual for more information how to enable it (bug #8651)
  • VMM: fix for recent Linux kernels with software virtualization
  • GUI: experimental HID LEDs synchronization for Windows hosts, see the manual for more information
  • GUI: warn the user if the Oracle Extension Pack is not installed and the user tries to activate the remote display feature (bug #9104)
  • GUI: make sure that a minimized guest (using mini toolbar in fullscreen/seamless mode) keeps the minimized state (bug #12199)
  • GUI: popup banner’s “do not show this message again” check-box replaced with corresponding button
  • GUI: network adapter cables can now be connected/disconnected directly through the running virtual machine Devices / Network menu a Network status-bar indicator
  • GUI: the new VM wizard now proposes 64-bit guests on 64-bit hosts by default; better distinction between 32-bit OS types 64-bit OS types (bug #12533)
  • GUI: better error message if appliance import fails (bug #12657)
  • GUI: allow to set host-combination to ‘None’ using the Global settings / Input page (bug #12730)
  • GUI: don’t switch the guest to a black screen during online snapshot merge (4.3 regression)
  • VBoxManage: when exporting an appliance, support the suppression of MAC addresses, which means they will be always recreated on import, avoiding duplicate MAC addresses for VMs which are imported several times
  • AHCI: fixed a VM hang during suspend under certain circumstances
  • AHCI: fixed a VM hang during online snapshot merge under certain circumstances
  • AHCI: fixed a bug which resulted in Windows XP guest hangs if a SATA CDROM is attached (bug #12417)
  • AHCI: fixed a Guru Meditation under certain conditions
  • AHCI: ejecting a CD/DVD medium failed under certain conditions
  • AHCI: disk hotplugging fixes
  • NAT: transparent handling of host sleep/resume and network configuration changes if the dnsproxy is enabled or if the hostresolver is used (bug #12441)
  • NAT: fixed crash and misbehaviour under some circumstances with ICMP packets having TTL=1
  • NAT Network: fixed IPv6 reassembly
  • NAT Network: ping proxy implemented
  • OVF: fixed reading of the OVF 0.9 section element (4.3 regression; bug #12345)
  • OVF: several fixes
  • 3D support: several fixes, multiscreen fixes (e.g. bug #9124)
  • 3D support: include 3D content in captured videos (bug #12666)
  • 3D support: include 3D content in captured screenshot (bug #11758)
  • VGA: proper handling of legacy graphics modes if the Guest Additions are active (bug #6649)
  • USB: fixed crash during isochronous transfer under rare circumstances
  • BIOS: better disk geometry handling of SCSI drives
  • API: fix crashes in Java API clients using the XPCOM binding, happened with output parameters only (bug #11232)
  • VBoxSVC: documented the handling of host power management events (see the manual for more information) and added an extradata item for configuring the handling of the battery-low event (bug #9925)
  • VBoxSVC: fixed a bug which could trigger a crash if a VM snapshot was restored the second time and the VM has associated bandwidth groups (bug #12569)
  • VBoxSVC: properly detect ifconfig if located in /bin (bug #12713)
  • Shared Folders: fixed a failure to restore transient shared folders when starting a VM from a saved state (bug #12578)
  • Mac OS X hosts: fixed issue when the application icon was frozen in the dock if the bridging interface was not connected to a network (bug #12241)
  • Linux hosts: also consider the physical package ID when determining the number of physical CPU cores
  • Linux hosts / guests: don’t warn in kernel log if memory allocation fails (bug #11171)
  • Solaris hosts: fixed the autostart SMF script (bug #11720)
  • Windows hosts: fixes for non-ANSI code page user names and similar environment contents (bug #12596)
  • Windows hosts / guests: fixed setting and using a guest user’s process environment variables (relevant for Guest Control)
  • Windows Additions: fixed handle leaks in VBoxTray (bug #12563)
  • Windows Additions: fixed a crash while detecting active guest users
  • Windows Additions: fixed restoring backed up D3D files on XPDM -> WDDM upgrade
  • Guest Control: fixed setting and using a guest user’s process environment variables
  • Linux Additions: support Enterprise Linux 6.5 kernels (bug #12505)
  • Linux Additions: fixed CPU hot-remove on newer Linux kernels
  • Linux / Solaris Additions: don’t automount a shared folder which is already mounted
  • X11 Additions: support X.Org Server 1.15 (bug #12623)

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Windows Update fix for corruption errors like 0×80070002

Posted by essjae on February 21, 2014

Microsoft KB 947821 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947821)

If you’ve gotten one of those cryptic 0x800xxxxxx Windows Update errors, Microsoft finally has a fix for Vista and higher, no XP solution.

Fix Windows Update corruption errors such as 0×80070002 and 0×80070057

Windows Update corruption errors prevent Windows updates and service packs from installing. For example, an update might not install if a system file is damaged. If the error you see is in the following list, try the solution in this article.

0×80070002 | 0x8007000D | 0x800F081F | 0×80073712 | 0x800736CC | 0x800705B9 | 0×80070246 | 0x8007370D | 0x8007370B | 0x8007370A | 0×80070057 | 0x800B0100 | 0×80092003 | 0x800B0101 | 0x8007371B | 0×80070490

 

Windows 8.x and Server 2012 Rx

To resolve this problem, use the inbox Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) tool. Then, install the Windows update or service pack again.

  1. Open an elevated command prompt. To do this, swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search. Or, if you are using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, and then click Search. Type Command Prompt in the Search box, right-click Command Prompt, and then click Run as administrator. If you are prompted for an administrator password or for a confirmation, type the password, or click Allow.
  2. Type the following commands. Press Enter after each command.
    Note It may take several minutes for each command operation to be completed.

    • DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Scanhealth
    • DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth
  3. Close the command prompt, and then run Windows Update again.

DISM creates a log file (%windir%/Logs/CBS/CBS.log) that captures any issues that the tool found or fixed. %windir% is the folder in which Windows is installed. For example, the %windir% folder is C:\Windows.

 

Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008 R2 or Windows Server 2008

See the KB link for the download you need. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947821

Posted in Vista, W2K8R2, Win7, Windows, Windows 2012, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Windows XP Support is ending soon! MSE for XP ending too!

Posted by essjae on January 9, 2014

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/end-support-help

After April 8, 2014, technical assistance for Windows XP will no longer be available, including automatic updates that help protect your PC.

Microsoft will also stop providing Microsoft Security Essentials for download on Windows XP on this date

 

Update: Microsoft has changed their mind. http://blogs.technet.com/b/mmpc/archive/2014/01/15/microsoft-antimalware-support-for-windows-xp.aspx

Microsoft will continue to provide updates to our antimalware signatures and engine for Windows XP users through July 14, 2015.

Posted in Computers, Windows, WinXP | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Congratulations to me! :-)

Posted by essjae on January 8, 2014

Microsoft has generously (re)awarded me as a Virtual Machine MVP ,  oops, Hyper-V MVP.

My goals for 2014 are a lot more blog posts on Hyper-V, other VM related topics, and IT in general.

Posted in Computers, Hyper-V | Leave a Comment »

Virtual Machines not shutting down on host shutdown in Windows Server 2012 R2

Posted by essjae on January 8, 2014

Ben Armstrong has a little blurb about  a fix included in the latest rollup for Windows Server 2012 R2

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/virtual_pc_guy/archive/2014/01/08/virtual-machines-not-shutting-down-on-host-shutdown-in-windows-server-2012-r2.aspx

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2896800/en-us

Hyper-V guest OS does not shut down when you restart the host computer that is running Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows 8.1

Symptoms

Consider the following scenario:

  • You set up a Hyper-V virtual machine on a host computer that is running Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows 8.1.
  • You set the Automatic Stop Action setting of the virtual machine to Shut down the guest operating system.
  • You restart the host computer.

In this scenario, the guest operating system (OS) on the virtual machine does not shut down. Additionally, after you restart the virtual machine, the following event is logged on the guest OS:Event ID: 6008
Message: The previous system shutdown at time on date was unexpected.

Note If the computer is part of a cluster, this issue does not occur.

Cause

This issue occurs because the Virtual Machine Management Service tries to shut down the virtual machine by using the Virtual Machine Worker process. However, the process encounters a logic failure that causes the shutdown operation to fail and reverts the shutdown operation. Therefore, power cycling occurs instead of a clean shutdown.

Resolution

Update information

To resolve this issue, install update rollup 2887595. For more information about how to obtain this update rollup package, click the following article number to go to the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

2887595

Windows RT 8.1, Windows 8.1, and Windows Server 2012 R2 update rollup: November 2013

Posted in Hyper-V, Virtualization, W2012, Windows, Windows 2012, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 | 3 Comments »

VirtualBox 4.3.6 Released

Posted by essjae on December 26, 2013

https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads

VirtualBox 4.3.6 (released 2013-12-18)

This is a maintenance release. The following items were fixed and/or added:

  • VMM: fixed a Guru Meditation VINF_EM_TRIPLE_FAULT caused by VMCB caching with nested paging on certain AMD CPUs (bug #12451)
  • VMM: fixed a Guru Meditation VERR_VMX_UNEXPECTED_INTERRUPTION_EXIT_TYPE while intercepting debug exceptions (VT-x only; bug #12410)
  • VMM: fixed a Guru Meditation VERR_SVM_UNEXPECTED_EXIT while intercepting debug register accesses (AMD-V only; bug #12481)
  • VMM: fixed a VERR_SSM_STRUCTURE_MAGIC error when trying to load a saved state made with VBox 4.3.4 when VT-x/AMD-V is disabled. Unfortunately, VBox 4.3.4 produced broken saved states for this configuration so you have to discard these states (bug #12414)
  • VMM: added a few more MSRs to the whitelist required by certain guests (bug #12245)
  • GUI: fixed deleting of inaccessible VMs (4.3 regression, bug #12205)
  • GUI: fixed warnings in VM settings / number of guest processors (bug #12480)
  • Main: don’t automatically enable 64-bit guests on 64-bit hosts if VT-x/AMD-V is not available (bug #12424)
  • Main: always expose the DMI memory information to Windows 2012 guests (bug #12017)
  • Main: fixed occasional crashes on guest display resolution change (bug #7063)
  • Main: fixed reporting back temporary name when calling IGuestSession::DirectoryCreateTemp() (bug #12498)
  • API: fix for a hang when launching a GUI VM through the API, which crashes due to GUI unavailability
  • Storage: fix for BLKCACHE_IOERR runtime errors under rare circumstances (bug #11030)
  • Network: allow to start more than 5 PCNet instances (bug #12426)
  • E1000: if the cable was disconnected before the guest initialized the device, the link status was not properly set to ‘down’ after the initialization completed despite the fact that there was no connection
  • 3D support: fixed offset of guest 3D image elements (Mac OS X Retina hosts only; bug #11021)
  • Solaris hosts: fixed accessing the host driver from non-global zones (4.3 regression, bug #12271)

Posted in VirtualBox, Virtualization | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

VirtualBox 4.3.4 Released Nov 29

Posted by essjae on December 5, 2013

A little late on this one.

VirtualBox 4.3.4 (released 2013-11-29)
https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Changelog
This is a maintenance release. The following items were fixed and/or added:

  • VMM: fix for a bug in the Local APIC emulation causing a BSOD when booting certain guests (4.3.0 regression; bug #12240)
  • VMM: fixed loading of saved states if VT-x/AMD-V was disabled (4.3.2 regression; bug #12291)
  • VMM: fixed single-stepping inside the guest for certain instructions (VT-x only; bug #10947)
  • VMM: fixed a performance issue involving APIC accesses after rebooting a VM (4.3.0 regression; VT-x only; bug #12296)
  • VMM: fixed TPR patching to be enabled for 32-bit guests even when the chosen guest type is 64-bit (4.3.0 regression; AMD-V only)
  • VMM: fixed occasional VINF_EM_TRIPLE_FAULT errors on hosts without the unrestricted guest execution feature (bug #12198)
  • GUI: don’t bother the user with the BPP warning if no Guest Additions are installed
  • GUI: fixed machine-window paint artifacts on VM reboot / guest-screen resize
  • GUI: make sure the assigned license and description are attached to the exported appliance
  • GUI: fixed bugs in close VM action restrictions handling (bug #12333)
  • GUI: fixed incorrect wizards text colors for some unusual look and feel styles (bug #11743)
  • GUI: should restore seamless mode as soon as possible after VM reboot or shutdown
  • GUI: fixes for medium enumeration
  • GUI: the OS X hot corners were not accessible while a VirtualBox VM is running (Mac OS X hosts only; bug #4139)
  • GUI: fixed an old bug which bared the host from cleanly shutdown / reboot if the VM selector window is open (Mac OS X hosts only; bug #8254)
  • Host-only Networking: fixed creating of host-only network interfaces (4.3.0 regression; bug #12182)
  • NAT: don’t run into an infinite loop in case the host cannot access any DNS server (4.3.0 regression; bug #12300)
  • NAT: don’t re-connect the cable if the DNS information changes and the cable was disconnected before (4.3.0 regression; bug #12225)
  • NAT: fixed several issues with automatically starting / terminating of NAT networks on VM start / stop and configuration changes
  • VBoxNetDHCP: don’t block prevent VBoxSVC from terminating (bug #12264)
  • 2D Video acceleration: fix crashes on presentation mode switches (bug #9194)
  • BusLogic: allow to run VMs with more than one BusLogic SCSI controller enabled
  • Keyboard: fixed a VM crash if a VM was resumed from a saved state where at least one key was pressed (bug #11289)
  • VBoxSVC: fixed a heap corruption under certain conditions (4.3.0 regression)
  • VBoxSVC: fixed a race leading to a hang during initialization (bug #12349)
  • OVF: fixed import logic for OVF appliances containing multiple VMs
  • OVF: improved logic for finding an appropriate image format during OVF import
  • API: block the removal of the current snapshot if it has child snapshots (only relevant for VMs without snapshottable hard disks, their presence always prevented removal), which resulted in VM configuration corruption
  • API: mark VM configurations with snapshots but without current snapshot as inaccessible, as this combination is nonsense
  • API: fixed information for some automatically generated events (only with XPCOM, Windows host was not affected), which caused errors when getting some of the attributes over the webservice (bug #12379)
  • SDK: extended the functionality coverage for the C bindings
  • Guest Control: various bug fixes and improved VBoxManage help (bugs #8072#11044#12336#12338#12346#12371)
  • Windows hosts: another attempt to fix the massive DPC latency (bug #6242)
  • Windows host installer: make registering file extensions optional, contributed by Tal Aloni (bug #8009)
  • Mac OS X hosts: properly sign the kernel extensions for Mavericks hosts (bug #12256)
  • Mac OS X hosts: fixed a bug where the VirtualBox dock icon was not properly removed from the dock after a VM terminated preventing Mavericks hosts from shutting down (bug #12241)
  • Mac OS X hosts: fixed minor installer issue (bug #12275)
  • Linux hosts / guests: Linux 3.13 compile fixes (bug #12358)
  • Linux guests: build the vboxvideo kernel module correctly on OL/RHEL 6.1 guests (bug #11996)
  • Linux guests: make 3D work on Slackware 14.1 (bug #12320 comments 3 and 4)
  • Guest Additions/3D: fixed an occasional dead-lock (bug #12319)
  • Windows Additions/3D: fixed possible memory leaking (bug #12228)
  • Windows Additions/XPDM: use separate tables containing valid video modes for each virtual monitor
  • Windows Additions: fixed automatic logins for Vista and newer Windows guests (bug #12332)

Posted in VirtualBox, Virtualization | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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