Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Ultimate Times Table Excel Spreadsheet!

It's that time of year again. The kids are back to school and it's time for them to learn their times tables. Please find below an Excel spreadsheet that you can use to print out a sheet of random times tables (multiplications and divisions).

To use the spreadsheet simply select which times tables should be included from the yellow cells on the first tab.

Then switch to the "Random Multiplication" or "Random Division" tab and print. Job done!
 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

No Windows Easy Transfer on Windows 8.1

I have a new PC Windows 8.1 laptop and need to transfer the 600Gb of files from my old laptop which is also running 8.1. Frustratingly I've discovered that Windows Easy Transfer in 8.1 no longer allows machine to machine transfer of files! Apparently you are supposed to copy everything to and from SkyDrive. Well 600Gb would take months over my ADSL and I've only got 100Gb on my SkyDrive account! It seems a crazy solution to remove this feature however I've found a solution. I found an old Windows 8.0 machine and copied the whole c:\Windows\System32\MigWiz folder to the two 8.1 laptops. You can then simply run the 8.0 migwiz.exe on the old and new laptops. I'm pleased to report that the Windows 8.0 version runs fine on 8.1 and successfully copies over the files.

I really think Microsoft should put the file transfer option back in. It would also be helpful if people sold USB3 Easy Transfer cables to speed up the transfer time.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

MessageBox.Show does not work on Windows 7 Embedded

I have the world's simplest C# Winform application. A Form with a single button. Here is the entire app.

private void button1_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
{MessageBox.Show("Hello World", "Button Click Event");
}
Amazingly on Windows 7 Embedded the MessageBox does not display. It works on every other non-embedded version of Windows.

It turns out that Windows 7 Embedded has an option to automatically click the default button on any MessageBox. See http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa940743(v=winembedded.5).aspx for more details.

Strange but true!






 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Dial up VPN connections fail following Win 8 to Win 8.1 RTM upgrade

I had a strange problem yesterday. I have several dial-up VPN connections that I use daily. With Windows 8 these were working fine. I upgraded the machine from Win 8 to Win 8.1 with the RTM bits. Following the upgrade none of the dial up VPN connections would work. They all reported Error 720 : A Connection to the remote computer could not be established. Other Windows 8 machines on the same network could connect to identical servers without any problem. In the end I found that rebooting the ADSL router (the one the client machines were connected to) fixed the problem. I've no idea why all the Windows 8 machines could connect but the Windows 8.1 machine refused until the router was restarted. If you come across the same problem it might be worth trying a router reboot. Let me know if it works for you.

Andrew

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Get Libraries back in Windows 8.1

Really annoyingly the Libraries feature in File Explorer seems to be turned off when you upgrade to Windows 8.1. To turn them back on Right click in the space between folders and select "Show Libraries".

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Are you a Manager or a Leader?

Are you a manager or a leader?
  1. The manager has subordinates; the leader has followers.
  2. The manager does things right; the leader does the right thing.
  3. The manager administers; the leader continually innovates.
  4. The manager is a copy; the leader is an original.
  5. The manager maintains; the leader develops.
  6. The manager focuses on systems and structure; the leader focuses on innovation.
  7. The manager relies on control; the leader inspires trust.
  8. The manager has a short-range view; the leader has a long-range perspective.
  9. The manager asks how and when; the leader asks what and why.
  10. The manager has his or her eye always on the bottom line; the leaders eye is on the horizon.
  11. The manager imitates; the leader originates.
  12. The manager accepts the status quo; the leader challenges it.
  13. The manager is the classic good soldier; the leader is his or her own person.
  14. The manager seeks group consensus for each decision; the leader makes decisions independently and regardless of the opinion of others.
  15. The manager assembles teams of those, like themselves, to advise on and validate every decision, leaders decide for themselves without external influence.
  16. The manager acts on expert advice; the leader has the courage to act against an expert’s advice.
  17. The manager knows the cost of everything, the leader knows the value of everything.
  18. The manager asks for a task to be performed, the leader shows the best way to do it.
  19. The manager always has someone else to blame for every mistake, the leader learns from his own mistakes.
  20. A leader takes people where they don’t necessarily want to go but ought to be.
  21. When the leader is finished with his work, the people say it happened naturally.
  22. Leaders are not team players, they feel no need to function as a group.
  23. The manager climbs the corporate ladder quickly, leaders don’t use ladders to climb.
  24. The person at the top of the org chart is rarely its true leader.
  25. Managers spend most of their time thinking they are leaders by virtue of their position.
  26. Leaders don't have all the answers whilst managers believe they do.
  27. Managers can be managed themselves, leaders can't be easily led or managed.
  28. Leaders 'begin with the end in mind.' Managers 'begin with the beginning in mind'.
  29. Leadership is freedom of action. Management is working within set boundaries.
  30. Leadership cannot be outsourced or delegated, management can.
  31. Leaders persevere until the goal is reached, managers abandon projects because they see only on the bottom line.
  32. Managers seek continuity, Leaders seeks change.
  33. Managers focus on goals for improvement. The Leader focuses on goals of innovation.
  34. Management's power is based on position or authority; Leadership power is based on personal influence and trust.
  35. The manager demonstrates skill in technical competence but the Leader demonstrates skill in selling the vision.
  36. The manager demonstrates skill in administration. A Leader demonstrates skill in dealing with ambiguity.
  37. The manager demonstrates skill in supervision. A Leader demonstrates skill in persuasion.
  38. The manager diligently seeks legal agreement at each stage of a project. A leader proceeds much more quickly by personal agreement based on trust.
  39. You manage things, you lead people.
  40. Leadership has no performance metrics, management does.
  41. Managers manage, so by nature are natural followers. Leaders lead.
  42. Management is a career. Leadership is a calling.
  43. Managers focus on the bottom line; leaders focus on adding value.
  44. Managers minimise todays costs, leaders maximise future value.
  45. Managers solve problems sequentially - step by step, leaders solve problems quicker by working in parallel.
  46. Managers take a salary, leaders work to change the world.
  47. A managers social identity is defined by title and position, a leaders identity by how he's changed the world.
  48. Without followers, there is no leader … there is just one person with a goal or idea.
  49. Managers prefer process, leaders prefer agility.
  50. The manager is SAD, the leader is MAD. SAD = Same as we've Always Done. MAD = Makes A Difference

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Installing NVIDIA drivers on 64bit Windows 8

I upgraded a Sony laptop from Windows 7 to Windows 8 but the upgrade did not detect the Nvidia graphics chipset. I grabbed the latest Windows 8 64bit Nvidia driver from http://www.laptopvideo2go.com/ but the installer failed. It turns out that 64 bit Windows 8 will not install a driver unless it’s signed. You can disable signature checking by :

  • Windows Key + C to bring up charms menu
  • Click “Settings”
  • Click “Change PC Settings”
  • Click “General”
  • Under Advanced Start-up click the “Restart Now” button
  • Click “Troubleshoot”
  • Click “Advanced Options”
  • Click “Start-up Settings”
  • Click “Restart” button
  • Press option 7 – Disable driver signature enforcement
  • You can now install your un-signed 64bit driver

No DVD after upgrading Windows 7 to Windows 8

I upgraded my Windows 7 laptop to Windows 8 RTM but the DVD player refused to work. It's a MATSHITA BD-CMB UJ141EF drive in a Toshiba laptop. It was showing a yellow exclamation mark in Device Manager which reported the following error "Windows cannot start this hardware device because its configuration information (in the registry) is incomplete or damaged. (Code 19)". Deleting and re-scanning in Device Manager made no difference.

SOLUTION:

I noticed a service called "TOSHIBA Optical Disk Drive Service" which was presumably installed as part of the original Windows 7 setup. I used "System Configuration" to stop this service and the drive now works correctly in Windows 8.