Getting Steam Version of Fallout 3 to Work on Windows 7

There are two parts. The first having to do with a pesky INI file, and the latter with setting the mode for the executable.

Open up the fallout.ini file in: My Documents\My Games\Fallout3

Find:
bUseThreadedAI=0

Change to:
bUseThreadedAI=1

Insert:
iNumHWThreads=2

This limits the game to utilizing 2 cores and supposedly this stabilizes some instabilities,  preventing the engine from wreaking memory havoc ending in game freezes and crashes.

Right-click on the Executable and set the Compatibility mode to Windows XP (SP3)

Likewise, set the executable to run in Administrator mode

That should do it. Obviously have the latest DirectX, drivers, blah blah blah. Now go kill some damned ghouls!

Converting or Copying Single Left Channel Track Stereo to Dual Right Channel in Audacity

It can be a real pain when you get an Audio sample that is stereo, but somehow only one channel (usually the left) has any audio data in it. Its not terribly noticeable on normal set of speakers coming out of your monitor perhaps, but if you have stereo output on and you have headphones  or a nice surround sound system .. wow.. it becomes painfully obvious.

Anyway, using Audacity fixing this problem is nothing less than simplicity itself.

  1. Open File
  2. Left part of Signal Zone you’ll find an “X“. Right of that is the Audio Track pull-down menu. Select Split Stereo Track.
  3. Now you have 2xmono tracks.  Kill the right/empty/bottom channel by clicking on the “X“.
  4. Now you have 1xmono track/channel. Goto  Edit->Duplicate or simply use the Ctrl+D shortcut and now you have 2xmono tracks.
  5. Access the left channel’s Audio Track drop-down menu again and select Convert to Stereo Track.
  6. Save!

Thank go to AVIL from the doom9 forums from a post made 7 years ago.

Server Upgrade from Bluehost to Amazon Cloud AWS

Don’t mind the temporary mess.. I’ve decided to move the server over to the Amazon Cloud hosting for better performance and savings gains from the exorbitant hosting fees I was paying at Bluehost.

Now, I wouldn’t want the wrong impression to be passed along, as far as shared hosting goes, I am the first in line to recommend Bluehost. They are quite reliable, the staff is always responsive, helpful, knowledgeable — and will acknowledge mistakes made on their part when pointed out without hubris or disdain. Also, they are VERY lenient when you commit minor abuses like CPU/RAM over-usage or file count abuse. They have updated and overhauled not only their systems, but their control panel as well over the years. These things far and above make them better than other hosting services I’ve used – horrible ones like GoDaddy and others.

However, once you go to dedicated [cloud] hosting, you really can’t go back to shared hosting.

So sit back, come along for the ride, and please don’t mind the digital bumps as I get the site up and fully running again.

Thanks!

Solve Two Sided Printing Second Page Upside Down Problem

The Problem

You are attempting to do duplex printing or dual-side printing or two-sided printing (whatever you want to call it), and that damned page on the other side is upside down, almost like some sick joke the printer universe gods are playing on you. You’ve tried changing all sorts of options – you get desperate and even try looking through the printer menu settings seeing if there’s anything that seems like it has anything at all to do with your little conundrum. All to be left feeling helpless, alone, and beaten.

 

This was the same situation I was in after having purchased a new printer recently. So help me, I was ready to commit printercide. Thankfully, enough research, desperation, and flavored vodka saved the night.

 

The Solution

It doesn’t matter if your printer is an HP, or an Epson, or whatever. The solution is basically the same. You actually do have to download the custom driver set for your printer from the manufacturer. (If you are running Linux, you only need to be able to access your higher/lower level settings). When that is done and you are going to print something, you will need to access the advanced “Print Dialog” and particularly the Preferences – which now after getting the custom drivers for your printer.. will allow you to do advanced two-sided printing options.

Particularly, the situation is this. You have to look for the area that describes “long edge” and “short edge” binding / printing / etc. Everyone uses different lingo – but basically if you have it set to something that sound like long edge, then change it to its short edge equivalent and everything will begin to work (or visa-versa).

Beware Jelly Bean Firmware Update for Asus Infinity TF700T

I found out the hard way today when the new Android Jelly Bean update was installed that I should have been more wary than previous OTA updates.

Unfortunately, it now appears as if the /data/local/ directory is no longer writable when attempting the debugfs root exploit on the TF700T.

What does this mean? This means that (re-)rooting the tablet is basically impossible at this point.

Now I have to do a factory firmware reset, somehow find all of the older OTAs, update my system, and sit pretty with old Ice Cream Sandwich until ASUS gets its head out of its rear or some intrepid hacker at XDA figures out a different root for my device.

So, my Infinity is almost basically useless. Most of the apps I use require root / su access, most importantly the SixAxis Controller app which is what I use for 90% of all my games on the device. Its not exactly a brick, but it might as well be as far as I’m concerned.

A Bricked Asus TF700T
My Asus is Basically Bricked

Again, I repeat, do not install the new firmware update on your Asus Transformer Infinity TF700T if your root is precious to you, because ASUS has swooped in to destroy your garden of innocence and defile it with its alien otherworldly morals. For shame! Damn my eyes!

Update: If you have an OTA RootKeeper, it might be possible that you can keep your root before the firmware update. I have yet to have this confirmed however.

Get Top results in fuzzy matches with Python

There is usually some scenario that inevitably comes up for me every couple years where I need to see if a phrase or word matches comparably with another one. However, there is the unfortunate circumstance (especially when dealing with thousands and thousands of possible matches) that the best match is not always the correct match.

So I hacked together this basically ugly set of functions to ultimately do one thing, return the top 3 results and their match percentage.

A screenshot of Bluehost's View Temporary Site message

Bluehost View Temporary Site Bug

Bluehost

Love it or hate it (or possibly overwhelming indifference) it is around and here to stay. I’ve used many different services and while I am sure there are many horror stories (no matter what hosting company you go with) I’ve only had several issues with them over the past few years.

I’ve got several accounts with them, have gotten other associates of mine to use them as well, and run more than 40 different websites across the strata. Once in a while, something particularly odd or annoying happens.

A screenshot of Bluehost's View Temporary Site message
Seen this message before?

I only use them for shared hosting, for more serious en-devours I use the cloud (particularly, AWS) as I’m sure I’ve expressed before.

Like many hosting services they go down sometimes. Sometimes its only for 20 minutes because some fool who ran a bad runaway script with a forever loop, sometimes its for a few hours because their daemons became unstable. Whatever, downtimes are not a big issue, they happen rarely (perhaps a few times a year, sometimes a couple times within a single week, and other times not for an 8 or 10 month stretch).

I don’t have a problem with it, in fact I fully understand how that kind of thing can happen.

What drives me crazy is when strange anomalies crop up. For example, sometimes their DNS zone files will get “reset”. You’ll notice this in particular when you have multiple domains pointing at different IP addresses.

When this happens, the wrong IP addresses get reported to some DNS servers temporarily and dish you out an IP address that, while it belongs to Bluehost, is not the correct IP address for your domain.

What happens then? Lets say your primary domain is server.com and you have an addon domain called server2.com. Your IP address for server.com is 123.123.123.100 and for server2.com its IP address is 222.222.222.200. Well one day you try going to server2.com and instead get sent to 123.123.123.199 (and when you check your DNS zone editor, you’ll see the address has been set to 123.123.123.100) then you see the infamous Bluehost message View Temporary Site for about two nanoseconds and then you get sent to server2.server.com

What do you need to do?

Well, you need to flush your DNS cache. I also recommend you stick to using Google’s public DNS server, but that’s up to you (8.8.8.8 and also 8.8.4.4 are available)

How to Logout of Amazon Web Services

This may seem like a crazy thing to post about, however, there is this extremely annoying bug that occurs if you login incorrectly to Amazon Web Services, whether you are trying to access your EC2 or whatever.

Let me start from the beginning, let’s say you have a personal Amazon account (not a far stretch of the imagination I hope), and let’s say that you have a separate account with which you use to access AWS (also, not really straying from the norm here). Now, lets say you need to enter the AWS Console for some administration and it asks you to login.

Then you make a blunder and accidentally login as your normal self.

Well, now you’ve done it. You are re-directed to a page that states you have not yet signed up for the Amazon web services and would you pretty please like to sign-up? Well of course you don’t since you’re already signed up with another account.

Then you try to log out so you can log in with the right account, and that is when your nightmare begins.

Maybe you try going to just the normal www.amazon.com site and logging out that way… nope, no good.

You try looking around the AWS pages… nothing, just more “Sign Me Up Scotty!”.

Then you start sweating and realize you might have to clear your cookies; maybe you don’t sweat, maybe you don’t care – but if you’re like me, you don’t like to clear your cookies on your browser. You like your cookies.

So you have the option of opening up another different browser, perhaps Firefox instead of Chrome this time and logging in that way.

Well of course you can login, navigate to the console and you can logout from there.

Well there’s the rub. You can use that link to log yourself out on the other browser of course.

Now occasionally it may slip your mind to copy that link and bookmark it for future use. Well no longer! I am here to give you that magical URL link so you can bookmark it and treasure it and love it.

https://console.aws.amazon.com/ec2/logout!doLogout

There, do you feel better and all warm and fuzzy?

I do.

Message of the Day

What to do after Installing Ubuntu 12.04

It may seem that it is a bit late to be writing about, particularly when 12.10 can be seen on the horizon, and yet considering that 12.04 is an LTS and that likely most of this advice will be useful for 12.10 anyhow, it still seems prudent to go ahead and spread the word. While your mileage may vary with this advice, I find that these steps are vital to getting a good working environment going. I’ve provided links when I can can to backup / support what little nuggets I’m put up.

It goes without saying that I recommend you use everything Google to track your stuff throughout your machines, PC, Android Phones, Android Tablets, or otherwise. Your contacts or bookmarks change in one place and they change everywhere else. If you have all of your documents, drivers, and other files uploaded into Google Drive, you will always have access to them no matter where you are (and you no longer have to keep them on your computer[s] taking up space). If all of your images are uploaded, and have instant upload activated, you will be able to do things like setup a new machine and have instant access to all your backgrounds – I have my own album setup called “Backgrounds” for this very purpose.

Screenshot of my Background Album on Google+
Check out my bad-ass backgrounds!

Likewise, you should have your one account on the Ubuntu Software Center set so that if you ever purchase something like a Humble Bundle, it will be good for any installation you ever do on any of your machines in the future. (Much like you would use the same Google account on all your phones / tablets / fablets so that when you purchase something on Google Play, it will install on all of your devices instead of just the one).

Enough jingoism, lets get to some specifics shall we?