Jesus n' Jim

 

picture of me

Jim Michaels



Certifications

CompTIA A+ Certified for life (HW+OS) 4/2005 (use code 71GZ36DDDP1QKERG)

CompTIA certifcation logo
Note: this site can have downtime during upgrades and debugging, in which the menus disappear etc.
I am using a modified breadcrumb menu based on O'reilly Publishing's CSS Cookbook. it's a good starting reference book. My version suits a different target purpose, so the tag layout is all different much of the css is too (when the menu program is operational again).
SITE IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION.


Vancouver Time

hot phone/tablet? bulge in usb/thunderbolt/apple cable?

PROBLEM: a noticeable bulge in a phone or tablet charging cable can cause the device to superheat and now that the cable is bad, the device and charger can go bad if left in this condition long enough. in the bulge, wires can get yanked loose and shorted with shield ground or with each other, get frayed, etc.

SOLUTION: replace the cable first, charger next if that doesn't fix it ASAP. if you cannot find a vendor who sells these, use startech.com and look under Apple. if things still don't work, you may have to bring in your apple phone for authorized repair or buy a new one.

CAUSES:

  • phone dropping from hand, tray, holder in car repeatedly while charging
  • phone dropping from table repeatedly while charging
  • phone dropping from table repeatedly while plugged into computer (ugh)

get on this right away if you see a bulge in the cable that isn't a strain relief. the sooner you take care of this, the longer the device and charger will last.


This is a computer-oriented site.

Mostly PC, but I have Mac tidbits. I am learning bits more about the Mac and ios/macos as I go along. macos uses objective C the last time I checked. To program on a mac or iOS you need XCode. it's not like the old days of the Apple II when the computer started up in BASIC and you just started putting in commands and writing programs to a 5.25" floppy drive. I wonder if there's an Apple II emulator for the mac? what will that do to (or enhance) computer museums?

there are numerous languages to program computers in usually, many of them may be on old archives like the OAK and Walnut Creek CDROMs.

I immediately question the wisdom of using an errant evolutionist's name "darwin" as the OS version name.


My Skills I have learned came from the Lord, and I also learned He gives you a set from birth, you just need to find out what those are. you can also add to that set. I am grateful for those skills - God is good (if you have a problem with that statement you would have to start a conversation with me - he does care about where you spend eternity, unless you have totally blown everything - He's the judge of that, not me - you would have to ask Him).


having problems right now

This site is simply here for informational purposes. You will find a lot of information on computers. I update or create some page pretty much weekly. I don't know how long I have had this web site, but it's been a long time at least 10 years. I just fixed DTime.js time library on 10-15-2016 so my calculators should be working again. The next update to DTime will be DTime2.js

I don't like having to logon thru the internet to use the box. I know people who want the machine offline.

Critical Fixes

Parts availability Notices - what you and I can't get

  • windows 3.x,98,NT,2000,xp, vista recovery media (almost whatever's not current).
  • motherboards no longer offer real floppy controllers as of 2012. apparently, there are no analog floppy controller chips available that work on the PCI-e bus. there is a kind of workaround you can do, a bus conversion from ISA to PCI and then from PCI to PCI-e. it requires 2 extra chips, but no manufacturer is willing to do it because it's probably not going to generate a lot of cash inflow, and floppies are considered a dead product right now anyway. their only use would be fore software preservation. for a usb-to-analog floppy controller, google kyroflux, you may have to make your own pried circuit board, it's open source hardware.
  • cdrom/cdrw drives - dvd burners are now the thing. you might be able to pick these up at a computer recycler
  • as of 2/2013, IDE/ATAPI/PATA DVD burners are no longer available on the market - except 1. WORKAROUND:
  • Distributed File System (System Services for the Windows Server 2003 Family and Windows XP Operating Systems): this file for most users should have its outgoing ports blocked in your firewall (e.g. Norton, mcafee, ca antivirus, etc.).
  • teac USB Floppies mitsui or matsushita I think which are the best models are no longer available through any means I have looked at. don't worry about mislabeling if you find one. these permit formatting. the USB makes it act like a digital device, not analog like floppies usually are, so you really can't use one of these for Spinrite well for data recovery on floppies.
  • as of 2012-2013, motherboards no longer offer 3.5" minidiskette/floppy drives. you can get new drives here.
  • as of 2012, motherboards no longer offer IDE/ATAPI/PATA
  • 30GiB, 120GB, and probably soon 500GB drives are no longer avaliable for windows 9x/me/NT4 machines. do not use and SSD on these OS's (no support for TRIM). you MIGHT be able to try NT4 and an 8GiB memory card (max disk size limit NT4) or SSD preferably SLC and this OS is so small it should "pop" as far as speed goes.

As per Microsoft regulations, XP Recovery Media can no longer be sold. sorry folks. if you didn't make recovery discs or you lost yours, you have several choices:

  • Microsoft Answers article on getting replacement 7 OEM/retail media
  • buy a new computer and get used to the new OS (maybe buy a book on it)
  • buy a used computer that DOES come with recovery discs (very little chance of this, people are in the habit these days of wiping the machine before selling, which removes the OS recovery partition), and 99% of the time you don't get recovery discs
  • buy a used computer that has a recovery partition
  • buy a new Windows Retail (full) OS for $119-$199 - most of the drivers you need are built-in. 32-bit XP Mode is available in Pro and Ultimate, requires Microsoft Virtual PC (get latest version) and is licensed for 1 cpu - you have to manually install it. Maybe buy a book on it. upgrade your CPU, mobo, RAM first while you have the chance for something that supports virtualization!
  • if necessary, get help from a techie friend and install a favorite distribution of linux I usually think of
    • Ubuntu linux
    • edubuntu for college students and kids
    • linux mint
    • turnkey linux (for business servers)
    • debian linux (comes on a blu-ray-DL disk)
    • http://pinguy-os.sourceforge.net/
    . in fact, linux live cd's like gparted can be used to fix and repartition and backup windows systems...
  • see if there is a trade-up/trade-in program for your machine via the manufacturer
  • recycle the machine at a local computer recycling shop
  • if your system is running, use it till it drops.

Software hosting

  • open source/free:
  • Software Sales/commercial:
    • hostedftp.com at 2TB@25¢/GB which is max $500/2TB pay for what you need (3/16/2016) is the only anon FTP hosting place around except for maybe
    • akamai.com they I think have global software delivery (FTP?) and e-commerce hosting with PCI Compliance and software/content delivery and content streaming.

    • about win9x/NT4

      30GiB drives are no longer avaliable for windows 98/me machines. try for refurb 120GB drives (a larger drive like 500GB-1TB should work, but have possible wasted space), those should work. you will need to partition them into 30-32GiB partitions.
      do NOT use an SSD on win9x. only win2k and above can use SSD's because of lack of support for TRIM.
      browser limitations for win98 are: ff 3.x, IE5.5-6.0
      one problem with larger drives than 120GB is that the BIOS may not see beyond 127GiB due to a BIOS limitation, and motherboards circa win2k had that limitation. a larger drive may work fine except for that. win98 browser can use firefox 3.22 I think. see the table below for how to partition an existing drive into chunks windows 98/me can use (no more than 24 letters!) - nobody said you have to use the whole disk! and you can put another OS on it too!:
      Windows 98(32:GiB)/me/DOS(4:GiB or 2:GiB) maximum-sized FAT32/vfat partition partitions for up to disk IF mobo supports >127GiB barrier. and allowing for reservation of drive letters for Optical drives and Floppies
      partition number Drive Letter partition size in GiB sum of size (disk size in GB)
      the maximum size usable by most windows 9x boxes will be about 127GiB due to the old BIOS and possibly the chipsets. NT4's limitation is 8GiB. usually it's the BIOS. if you are fortunate enough to have a BIOS update which fixes the problem, then you have a chance to fix the problem and use a bigger disk like a 500GB. extra space cannot be usedI think would be ignored. WORKAROUND: a refurbished 80 or 120GB drive might work just fine. motherboard which have the old 127GiB/137GB limits you can work around by installing a SATA CARD that has a BIOS.


      what programming is like for me


      about my programming

      The languages I currently use for development are:

      • NSIS installer
      • C++
      • PHP
      • SQL
      • Per
      • 386 Assembler
      • 6800 Assembler (easy to relearn)
      • 6502 Assembler (easy to relearn)
      • JavaScript
      • BASIC-like languages
      • flex
      • bison
      • Java (re-learning, have book, only look up info I need at the time)
      • minimal stuff with Flash.
      • Tcl (have a book though)
      • whatever is thrown at me pretty much... - except LISP - it ties my mind in knots.

      Languages I used in College

      • Actor (dervative of Smalltalk)
      • Modula-2
      • C
      • C++
      • Pascal
      • 8086 Assembler
      • P/byte-Code interpreter
      • languages we wrote/compiled/ran with specifications given by the instructor

      Certifications have not benefitted me and seem to be a waste of my resources. I know basically what I can do.

      Windows GUI programming I've been trying to tackle using only the Win32 API. Now I would like to work with combo boxes and list boxes without using a resource editor, and using mingw and mingw-w64. I might end up using a GUI toolkit to make everything easier because the message passing system of windows is a pain.

      I think I could do embedded systems given some practice.


      Send email to Jim Michaels

      useful stuff for windows