LEGACY Crash Course in Debugging C Programs with Emacs GDB (annotate=3)

I have a constant need to debug specific C programs. Because I have mostly worked in constrained embedded systems Linux environments, in reality I have not had possibility to have a debugger available. So I never learned GDB. But recently I was able to compile the application binaries in a regular 32-bit Linux environment. I was finally able to do debugging with Emacs GDB after learning just one day. This crash course will probably help you if you want to learn GDB debugging with text mode Emacs. We will be using the gdb-many-windows variant layout.

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Casio G-Shock GA-800-1A – The best clutter-free watch ever built!

If you are like me (which is quite unlikely but still) you really appreciate a clutter-free experience. I had been trying to find a proper watch for months but there seems to be one diabolical design pattern in every combination analog + digital watch. The designers try to fit F-117 cockpit worth of gadgets to the bezel! It just does not work. With tedious work I was finally able to find one simple watch that caters for my tastes, namely Casio G-Shock GA-800-1A. Read below for my introduction about the watch.

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32GB RAM for Thinkpad X270 (and other pimp-ups)

I have been using my Thinkpad X230 for 6 years. I have been a bit of a harsh master to it and it shows via all the cracks and loose USB ports. The resolution is also quite tiny compared to modern standards. I decided to get new laptop. I tried first with HP EliteBook 840 G2, but I just couldn’t get used to scrolling without the mouse middle button. I wanted a Thinkpad with FullHD screen, upgradable memory and regular LAN port. X270 is the last Thinkpad to fulfill all the needs, so I got a second-hand one via Finnish online auction. To my surprise the laptop is also able to support 32GB memory stick! Read more to follow the full upgrade process I had with the computer. Continue reading “32GB RAM for Thinkpad X270 (and other pimp-ups)”

Building wheeled cable holder tower from odds and ends

I have had troubles keeping my workplace clean. One of the base problems is that I have not had any place to keep my cables. So they have been just laying around like worms after rain. I decided to do something about it eventually. I tried to buy a solution but the designs available were ridiculous. It turned out that this device is at least in Finland so rare that many organizations just gobble up something themselves and go with it. We took the same approach. The result is here:

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How to FIX Windows update error 8050800C about Windows Defender Definition Update

Did you receive the 8050800C error from Windows update while trying to get the Windows Defender updates? I did with my Windows 7 Pro 64.  Lots of sites tell a lot of stupid things to try, things that are only there to make the site catch more Google hits to serve more ads. Nobody seems to test their stuff anymore. I did. And I have a working, tested solution.

Executive summary of fix:

  1. Download the the Windows Defender update file manually (mpas-fe.exe, available from https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/wdsi/definitions )
  2. Start Windows in safe mode
  3. Run the downloaded exe in safe mode and reboot (or optionally run the exe with Windows Update Service disabled)
  4. It’s fixed!

For more details and illustrated guide, read more below.

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Reverse-Engineering The Samsung SCX-3205 Scan To -Button Protocol

USB packet analysis in USBlyzer

In the year 2014, I tried to be smart with my old Samsung SCX-3205 printer/scanner device. I wanted to get the physical Scan to -button to work. I went with Windows first. It failed eventually, and as a result, I had to reverse-engineer the Samsung USB protocol to get things to work in Linux. Continue reading “Reverse-Engineering The Samsung SCX-3205 Scan To -Button Protocol”

Reviewing Lanner NCA-1010B fanless gateway box with Intel NICs

Quest for gateway machine with dual Intel NICs

I, as well as my fellow Linux networking enthusiasts have grown to dislike any network hardware which has Realtek network interface cards (NICs). I had a personal problem with those; my Windows 7 installation refused updates when the gateway machine was running Realtek NICs with stock settings. Since then I had been searching for small form-factor computer with dual Intel NICs to serve as my home gateway machine.

Lanner Inc. NCA-1010B gateway box

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[UPDATED] Getting the Samsung SCX-3205 physical “Scan to”-button to “work”

The handy Scan to -button. Handy when it works.

Update 2015-09-06

Terrible news. It seems that the windows scanning solutions leaks handles. I have seen it consume tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of handles. After enough handles are used, Windows crashes 🙁 Rest of the text is kept for posterity.


Recently my father gave me his old multifunction printer. It is a Samsung SCX-3205. It does not have Ethernet port for easy wired connectivity, so I decided to add it as a networked printer via my virtual Windows 7 installation running on my ESXi host. Everything worked fine after installation of the drivers, with one exception, the physical “Scan to”-button. It just didn’t do anything.

After I realized the Scan To button did nothing, I thought that the virtual environment was to blame. I tried to fidlle around in ESXi settings but the button remained mute. Then I hooked up the printer to my desktop machine and started investigating.

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