Category Archives: Computers and Internet
Welcome to the first episode (and hopefully the last episode) of obscure and mildly amusing facts from the IT world.
Visual C++ Redistributable
The digital distribution services like Steam and GOG are infamous for installing different versions of Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable (VCRedist) with every video game. If you look at the list of installed software on your computer, there is a good chance you will find dozens of items titled “Microsoft Visual C++ #### Redistributable” where #### is number starting with 2005.
What they do not seem to know is that starting with Visual C++ 2015, Microsoft is publishing all versions of VCRedist in one package. Now there is one package to rule them, one package to find them, one package to bring them all, and in your computer bind them! (At least, that’s what Sauron from the Lord of the Rings would say.) You can download that one package from Microsoft Support website.
NVIDIA GeForce, version 342.01
Today, two graphic cards on two different computers suffered from failure. So, I pulled out two older graphics cards from the storage to get those computers running again. They both had the same GPU: NVIDIA GeForce 210. The last NVIDIA GeForce driver pack to support this GPU is version 342.01. However, according to the NVIDIA website, I had to download two different driver packages: 342.01-desktop-win10-64bit-international.exe and 342.01-desktop-win8-win7-winvista-64bit-international.exe.
I downloaded both files and compared them byte-by-byte. They were identical.
Update: It appears Firefox 66.0.4 has resolved the issue. Chances are you have never experienced this problem.
On 4 May 2019, one of the Mozilla digital certificates used to sign Firefox add-ons expired. With this certificate no longer able to verify the authenticity of the add-ons, user across the faced the loss of access to their Firefox add-ons.
This post teaches you how to recover from this failure in about 15 minutes and resume your daily routine work as if this has never happened.Read the rest of this entry
Stack Exchange is the title of a series of online community sites that includes the famous Stack Overflow, the question and answer site for the software developers. By its own confession, Stack Exchange is a very unfriendly place.
So, recently, moderators have started enforcing its policies more strictly. Good, isn’t it? Not really. They are punishing victims instead of perpetrators. Read the rest of this entry
I have already wrote about the evils of plain text and how it is one of the worst inventions of the computing field. But as if I needed a tangible example for my readership, yesterday, I received a cryptic text (I mean SMS) on my mobile phone, which run as follows:
Tried my best; knew your life depends on it:
It was a very tough situation: My life depended on a corrupt text. But fortunately, I had a Windows computer at hand and I could fix it. Read the rest of this entry
June 2016 update: Link repairs.
TrueCrypt is a discontinued free disk encryption utility for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It is a free and shared-source alternative to BitLocker, but is not restricted to the high-end editions of Windows and does not need Trusted Platform Module (TPM).
TrueCrypt’s sudden end of life on 28 May 2014 become controversial, since unlike most computer programs, TrueCrypt’s authors beheaded it with the release of version 7.2. Read the rest of this entry
The sheer number of inventions in the field of computing easily surpasses the grand total of the human inventions outside this field. It is no surprise that some of them backfire and some of them quickly age.
Today, I’d like to introduce you to some of them that are still alive and desperately need to die or evolve. I started with five that irritate people around me the most. I am hoping that by the time you see the name of the last, you think: Well, that’s a huge shock and surprise but judging by the other five, this writer is very much sane. And hopefully, by the time you finish reading it, you feel I have a point there. Read the rest of this entry
Yesterday, Microsoft confirmed that Internet Explorer 11 for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 is finally available. I immediately downloaded the package and inspected it: Internet Explorer 11 for Windows 7 (x64) is digitally-signed on 15 October 2013, meaning that the package could have not possibly changed ever since.
What was the IE team doing during this time?
The preview version of Internet Explorer 11 also exhibited a similar delay: It was released on 19 September while it was digitally-signed on 23 August 2013.
As an interesting side note, Windows 8.1 was released 17 October 2013, so the reason for the delay can’t be the languages.
Unfortunately, sometimes, spotting the cause of the simplest of problems is unbelievably difficult.
Read the rest of this entry