case
17Apr/0911

Install Windows XP on your Asus Eee PC using a USB flash drive

This method of running and installing a Windows from a USB flash drive works on all computers not just Asus Eee PC's.

To complete this tutorial you'll need:

- a 32bit version of Windows XP or Windows Vista installed on your computer

- USB_PREP8

- PeToUSB

- Bootsect

- a Windows XP instalation CD or image

Extract all the zip archives, copy the PeToUSB content into the USB_prep8 folder. Inside the USB_prep8 folder double click the executable named usb_prep8.cmd

The window that opens will look like this:

Click to enlargePress any key to continue.

Your next window will look like this:

Click to enlargeThese settings are preconfigured for you and all you need to do now is click the Start button.

Once the format is complete, DO NOT close the window. Just leave everything as it is and open a new command prompt from your start menu (type cmd in the Run box)

Inside the command window, go to the directory you have bootsect.exe extracted and type (see note bellow first)

bootsect.exe /nt52 R:

Note: R: is the drive of my USB stick. Open Windows Explorer and see what letters yours is assigned to and change the command accordingly. When running the bootsect.exe command, you must close all windows/programs that are displaying/using the content of the USB stick to allow the boot sector writer to lock the device and write the sector correctly.

This part writes the correct boot sector to your USB stick and allows the pc to boot from the stick. Without this noting works.  If all went well with the command, you should see "Bootcode was successfully updated on all targeted volumes"

Now you can close this command prompt and the PeToUSB window (but make sure not to close the usb_prep8 one by mistake)

The window you see now should look like this:

Click to enlarge

Now you need to enter the correct information for number 1, 2 and 3

- Press 1 and then enter. A folder browse window will open for you to browse for the location of your XP setup files (cd rom drive, mounted image or a folder somewhere on your system)

- Press 2 and enter a letter not curently assigned to a drive on your PC (try x or someting at the end of the alfabet)

- Press 3 and enter the drive letter of your USB stick

- And finally, press 4 to start the process

The script will ask you if its okay to format the virtual tempdrive (the one at step 2). This is just a temp drive the program creates and mounts to cache the windows installation files. You can safely press Y to continue

Once it's done formating, press enter to continue again, you can now see the program copying files to the temp drive it created. This will take a while (browse other articles from my blog till then 🙂 ) but once this is done, press enter to continue again.

Next you will see a box pop up asking you to copy the files to USB drive (yes/no options). You want to click yes here.

Once the script has completed once again a shit long copying process, another window asking if you would like the USB drive to be preferred boot dive U:. select Yes on this window too.

Now select yes to unmount the virtual drive.

Ok we are done the hard part, close the usbprep8 window.

Now make sure your EEE pc is configured with USB as the primary boot device.
Insert your USB drive and boot up the EEE.

On the startup menu you have two options, select option number 2 for text mode setup.

From this point on it is just like any other windows XP installation delete/recreate the primary partition on your EEE pc and format it using NTFS. Make sure you delete ALL partitions and recreate a single partition or you will get the hal.dll error message.

Once the text mode portion of setup is complete it will boot into the GUI mode (you can press enter after the reboot if your too excited to wait the 30 seconds)

Once the GUI portion of setup is complete you will again have to boot into GUI mode this will complete the XP installation and you will end up at you XP desktop. It is very important that you DO NOT REMOVE THE USB STICK before this point. Once you can see your start menu it is safe to remove the usb stick and reboot your pc to make sure everything worked.

This method has advantages over all current no cdrom methods of installing XP to the EEE. You do not have to copy setup files in DOS to the SSD and install from there. It gives you access to the recovery console by booting into text mode setup, and it gives you the ability to run repair installations of XP if you have problems later on.

I hope this worked out for you and please post feedback to the comments section.

xpinstall

27Feb/092

View hidden files with a keyboard shortcut

HowToGeek has come up with an absolutely marvelous solution to quickly toggle the display of hidden files on your Windows computer. Often you have to view hidden files when making changes to system files or configuration files of softwares. Enabling the "show hidden files" option in Windows is a long process. The author of HowToGeek has coded a simple application in AutoHotkey script that runs in the background and toggles the status of the "show hidden files" option with a shortcut key combination - Win+H. There is no user interface to keep memory usage at a minimum, but you can customize with by editing the script which is provided on the site.

Once the application is running, all you have to do is hit the Win+H shortcut key.

togglehidden1_thumb2

And immediately any hidden files will become visible. Hit the same shortcut key and the folders become hidden again.

togglehidden2_thumb2

To make this application auto start, copy it to your startup folder C:\Documents and Settings\%username\Start Menu\Programs\Startup. Since there is no GUI, the only way to close the application is by killing the process through the task manager.

This application is going to make my life a lot easier. I wish it was available earlier. Download ToggleHiddenFiles.

23Feb/092

How To – Setup a Subversion server on Windows

What is subversion

Subversion (svn) is a version control system initiated in 2000 by CollabNet. It is used to maintain current and historical versions of files such as source code, web pages documentations etc. Google code also provides free Subversion hosting but if you want your own private server continue reading to learn how to set up your own svn server

First: get the Subversion setup and run it to install Subversion.

Installing svnserve as a service
 
The simplest way to set up a server on Windows is to use svnserv which can be installed as a Windows service.
Run these commands in order to get the service up and running:
 

1
2
   mkdir c:\svn
   svnadmin create c:\svn\repos

Start the service:

1
2
   sc create svn binpath= "\"C:\program files\Subversion\bin\svnserve.exe\" --service -r C:\svn" displayname= "Subversion Server" depend= Tcpip start= auto
   net start svn

Note: There really are spaces after the = signs.
Check that it worked by checking out the repository:

1
   svn checkout svn://localhost/repos

Adding security

Edit C:\svn\repos\conf\svnserve.conf, uncomment these lines and change anon-access to none:

1
2
3
4
   anon-access = none
   auth-access = write
   password-db = passwd
   realm = My Subversion Repository

Now edit C:\svn\repos\conf\passwd and add a user name and password to the users section:

1
2
   [users]
   myusername = mypassword

Delete your first checkout and try to check out the repository again, this time you will have to supply a user name and a password.

Using WebDAV via Apache 2.2

Get and install XAMPP, install Apache and MySQL as a service. Unblock ports as needed when the installation is finishing up.

As we are installing Apache 2.2 so we need builds of the Subversion Apache modules which are compatible with Apache 2.2 which are available here.

XAMPP has a prebuilt mod_dav_svn and mod_authz_svn - they don't work, replace them with the Apache 2.2 built ones which you have just downloaded, the zip file contains a complete build of Subversion but we only need the two Apache module files. The files to replace are mod_dav_svn and mod_authz_svn in c:\xampp\apache\modules.

Edit C:\xampp\apache\conf\httpd.conf and add:

1
   Include conf/extra/httpd-subversion.conf

Put this in that file:

1
2
3
4
5
6
   LoadModule authz_svn_module modules/mod_authz_svn.so
   LoadModule dav_svn_module modules/mod_dav_svn.so
   <location /svn/repos>
     DAV svn
     SVNPath c:/svn/repos
   </location>

Stop and start the Apache service, either using the command line or the XAMPP Control Panel Application. Fire up a web browser and go to http://localhost/svn/repos.

Adding Security

In httpd-subversion.conf, add this to the Location directive:

1
2
3
4
   AuthType Basic
   AuthName "Subversion Repository"
   AuthUserFile c:/svn/passwords
   Require valid-user

Now create a password file and add a user, note: xamp htpasswd doesn't like drive letters.

1
2
3
   C:\svn>c:\xampp\apache\bin\htpasswd -cb \svn\passwords myusername mypassword
   Automatically using MD5 format.
   Adding password for user myusername

Then restart Apache again. You will now need to use the user name and password to access your repository.

If you're not familliar with the svn command line or you find it to hard to use, just download TortoiseSVN. You'll love it.