Building a Media Centre

I enjoy a good film and in my youth I used to love going to the cinema but as I got older I found the cinema became far too expensive for the reward and I just didn’t have the time anyway. Since I enjoyed watching things on the big screen the natural answer was a projector and for years I played DVD’s on a computer though a projector. Around ten years ago though the projector blew a bulb and, as I had other things on, it never go replaced. A couple of months ago though I bought a new projector and now I’m looking to set up a full home cinema.

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Script Must Not be Null or Empty

I’ve just started learning Spring / Spring Boot so I’m at that stage where I’m making all the stupid beginner mistakes. In the past I used to catalogue the problems I hit, especially when learning a new technology. A few people told me they found it really useful so I’ve decided to start again. This particular issue I ran up against didn’t take long to figure out but the message on the exception isn’t as clear as it could be so I thought it was worth documenting.

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Digikam Tagging

I’ve recently switched from Picasa (which has been retired) to Digikam for photo management and I’ve noticed a few quirks that I need to document to or I’ll forget them. For the most part Digikam is a massive upgrade over Picasa but a few things in Digikam don’t necessarily work quite as I’d expect them to.

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No Boot Space No iNodes

When I set up my QEMU virtual machine system I made a couple of mistakes. As I was running on a host that had very limited resources I made the virtual machines as small as I possibly could and that has come back to bite me at bit. The two problems I seem to constantly suffer from are running out space on the boot partition and, on one machine, running out of inodes.Continue reading

My List of Useful Utilities

I hate to think how many computers I’ve built and installed over the years. I’ve found that there are a core set of utilities that I keep coming back to that I’ve found really useful on most installs. As I only use some of them infrequently I thought I’d put together a list so that in future I don’t forget any, perhaps this list will be useful for you as well.Continue reading

cPanel Addon Domain Management

In this article I discuss cPanel addon domain management and what you need to do to prevent your website being accessible by multiple different domain names when you run more than one site using cPanel (known as add-on domains). You don’t want a site to be accessible by multiple different domain names as you’ll suffer a duplicate content penalty in search engine listings.  Continue reading

Windows 10 Start Menu – That’s Useful

I’m not normally one to complain about Windows, there’s more than enough people doing more than enough complaining about it that I don’t feel the need to add my own frustrations but the start menu made something snap inside me just now and I had to let those frustrations see the light of day.

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Fastest Updates in SQL Server

The project I’m working on at the moment requires me to achieve the fastest updates I can into a moderate sized SQL Server database table. My initial attempts were adequate for the testing I was doing on my development machine but when I came to do a more thorough test in a production like environment I found that the method I was employing wasn’t even close to fast enough. At that point I seriously considered just giving up, the difference between what I had and what I needed didn’t look like an “I’ll give it a tweak” type problem it was a vast performance gulf that had to be crossed. The solution was to better understand both my application and SQL Server and here’s what I did.Continue reading

No Space on the boot Partition

When I installed my Ubuntu Linux virtual machines I just let the installer do whatever it felt was right in terms of disk partitioning. In hindsight that was probably a mistake because it gave me a separate 256Mb boot partition. While this partition is large enough to store several kernels I do find myself running out of space about twice a year if I keep the servers up to date.

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