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2012-08-03

Debugging log4net

Enable internal logging by adding the following to appSettings:
<add key="log4net.Internal.Debug" value="true"/>

More details in this thread on Stack Overflow:
http://stackoverflow.com/questions/3121975/log4net-appenders-not-working-in-iis7-5/3126675#3126675

2012-05-02

Why is Windows 7 so slow?

After I’ve been looking for a solution for my wife’s new 64 bit gamer PC for some time (and still haven’t found a satisfactory solution), these proposed solutions may or may not work (use at your own risk):
Windows Shell:
  • Shell Extensions:
    • Run Auturuns.exe or ShellExView.
    • Disable/uninstall etc extensions/programs that are started automatically.
    • Some that may be disabled as an attempt:
      • Nero/Nero Scout.
      • VirtualCloneDrive
      • Power Archiver 2011
  • Optimizing folders for images/videos etc.
    • Windows is continuously trying to optimize your folders for whatever is in them, but that process is quite expensive.
    • Set all folders to be optimized for “General Items”, then you can set the ones you want to be optimized for other stuff to whatever as you wish (and at a performance cost) afterwards.
  • Windows Search Index
    • Disable/turn off.
  • Antivirus software real time protection.
    • Turn off (at own risk)
  • User profile issues
    • You may have an issue with your user account. Try to create a new user account, and check if that account has the same problems.
Internet Explorer:
  • Turn off addons.
    • To run without addons, start IE using “iexplore.exe –extoff” in Start/Run.
Firefox:
  • Is maintaining a 50M+ database of malicious web sites which is synchronized (at startup maybe? or in the background?).
    • May be turned off (at your own risk) if you have healthy browsing habits and don’t click just any links.
  • Turn off addons.
Source(s):
UPDATE:
The reason the PC was so slow seems to be the SSD disk on which Windows is installed. Googling it turned up several people with problems, and also some guy at the retailer (Komplett.no) confirmed that there could be some issues with it. Now just waiting for my wife to make her backups so we can return the PC to the retailer for repairs.

2012-03-13

VMWare disk crash

I was going to a meeting, so I just folded my laptop shut and was off. After the meeting my vmware disk image was corrupt.

So what to do?

I downloaded the Virtual Disk Development Kit (requires registration), and pretty much followed this recipe: http://blog.ijun.org/2011/10/vmware-specific-virtual-disk-needs.html.

Then attempted to start the VM, but starting it seems to corrupt the disk again, so…

Repaired the disk again, and then mounted it on my laptop, using the vmware-mount command from the Virtual Disk Development Kit. MARK: The mounted drive was only accessible through the same command window where the mount command was run. I was then able to XCOPY all my files, so that I can copy them to a new vmware image and continue my work.

2012-02-16

BSOD on Lenovo ThinkPad W510 w/Intel SSD

I have a Lenovo ThinkPad W510 with intel SSD (about 75 Gigs). I’ve been having a lot of bluescreens, but now I think I’ve solved the problem by a firmware update on my SSD.

My first problem was that I do not have an alternate boot device: no floppy and no CD/DVD drive, so I had to make a bootable USB Flash Drive, and boot from it. Here’s how to do that: http://arstechnica.com/business/news/2009/12/-the-usb-flash-drive.ars, or even like this: http://johnpapa.net/BootFromUSB. Come to think of it, it’s always nice to have an alternative boot device available, as a sort of Windows rescue disk.

So after that I downloaded the Intel Firmware Update Tool: http://downloadcenter.intel.com/Detail_Desc.aspx?agr=Y&DwnldID=18363.

Copy the tool to the flash drive.

Boot from flash drive, then run the tool. Booting from the flash drive might require you to enter into the BIOS setup to change the boot sequence so that an attempt to boot from the USB device is made.

No BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) for 2 weeks now, and I used to have them at least once a day, one day I had one every hour or so.

Here’s an alternative path with full description:
http://communities.intel.com/thread/8906

Hope this helps someone.

2012-01-03

Debugging Windows BSOD (Windows 7)

Here are some steps to take if your Windows PC regularly crashes, showing the infamous Blue Screen of Death (BSOD):

  1. Download and install the “Debugging Tools for Windows” x64 or x86 depending on your hardware architecture.
  2. Set path to symbol files.
  3. Start WinDbg, and select “Open Crash Dump” from the File menu.
  4. Select the latest crash dump file.
  5. Read the output, at the bottom you will find the likely cause of the crash.

This is the full story: http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2011/041811-windows-7-crashes.html?page=1