How to format SD card on Linux Mint

When an SD card is inserted into a computer running Linux Mint the card is automatically mounted and an icon is displayed on the desktop. Using this icon you can view and modify files. It also would appear that you could format the card as well by right-clicking on the icon.

When the option to Format is selected a dialog box to format the card is displayed but, the button to Format is not clickable:

The trick is to use the Disks utility to format the partition on the card. First, open the Disks utility:

Next, select the SD card on the left then click the gear icon under the partition on the SD card:

Then select Format… from the context menu:

Now a dialog box is displayed with the Format button enabled. Provide a name then click the button Format:

The next window is confirming your actions. Click Format to begin formatting the partition on the card:

That’s it!

Note: if you click the single gear icon at the top-right corner (near the SD card’s name) the same dialog box will be displayed. It will appear to format the card but, it doesn’t. You have to format the partition on the card.

Default Font Color Test

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PDF files not included in Windows Search on Windows 7 and 8

As you probably know searching is the most efficient way to find documents, applications, and settings in Windows 7 and 8. By clicking on the Start button and typing you can quickly find files containing specific text and phrases.

The mechanism that allows this is Windows Search that runs as a Windows service. Windows Search has it’s roots in the Indexing Service that first appeared in NT4 and Internet Information Services (IIS). Indexing involves building a catalog (index) that contains the meta-data for files and applications. The meta-data is retrieved via plugins called IFilters.

Windows Search by default includes IFilters for common filetypes, including Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, HTML files, text files, MP3 and WMA music files, WMV, ASF and AVI video files and JPEG, BMP and PNG images. PDF files are indexed by Windows Search using an IFilter installed automatically when Adobe Reader is installed. However, on 64-bit versions of Windows the IFilter is not installed and the Indexing Service is unable to parse and index these files. Fortunately, the fix is easy and can be done without a reboot.

First, to confirm the IFilter is not installed you need to open Indexing Options in the Control Panel. To do this click on Start and enter the text index. Windows will search for anything with “index” and display the Control Panel option Indexing Options.

Search for Indexing Options

When selected the Indexing Option window appears. This window tells you the status of the Indexing Service, the number items in the catalog, and the options to add or remove search locations. In the following example my computer has indexed 12,033 items.

Indexing Options before installing the PDF IFilter

Click on the button Advanced and then click on the tab File Types. Scroll down to the PDF extension. If the IFilter has not been installed the filter description will state Registered IFilter is not found as in the following screenshot:

Missing IFilter in Indexing Options

After confirming the IFilter is missing you can close the Indexing Options window and download Adobe’s IFilter for 64-bit Windows. The current version as of the time of this writing is PDF iFilter 64 11.0.01 and can be downloaded from Adobe’s HTTP site or FTP site.

Once downloaded, you can install it using an elevated command prompt (run Command Prompt as administrator) with the following command:

msiexec /i “C:\Install\PDFFilter64Setup.msi” REBOOT=R /qb /L*v c:\temp\install_ifilter.log

After the installation completes go back into Indexing Options and confirm the IFilter was installed and registered. The following screenshot shows that the Indexing Service will use an IFilter named “PDF Filter”.

Installed IFilter

Now, all that is left to do is to rebuild Windows Search index. Click on the Index Settings tab and then on the button labeled Rebuild.

Rebuilding Windows Search index

After clicking the Rebuild button Windows will display a warning, click OK to start the rebuild.

Rebuild warning

The status of the rebuild can be monitored on the Indexing Options window. While you are using your computer Windows will reduce the speed of the indexing operation.

Eventually (within an hour or two, depending on size of catalog) the index will be rebuilt and now contain search items from PDF files. On my computer the number of indexed items increased to 40,913.

Indexing Options

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Google humor: shut your piehole!

I was reading the documentation for using Google’s Chart features – specifically the how to create a donut chart documentation. It was all pretty routine boring documentation until the last sentence.

These little jokes are one thing I have always liked about Google! For what’s worth I am probably not going to use Google Charts. I had an internal app that used Google Charts to generate a QR code. Unfortunately, Google decided to stop supporting the generation of QR codes and have deprecated this feature. It looks like I am going to go with Flot.

Things IT People Say

Usually the funny stuff is saved for my personal blog but, technically this is IT related and my non-IT friends wouldn’t get it anyway. This isn’t “cat herder” funny but, still pretty funny.

And yeah I tell my users this stuff!

PowerShell E2010 is not installed on this machine

After applying an update roll-up to Exchange 2010 server I ran into a problem when running the powershell script UpdateCas.ps1. This is the script updates the OWA site in IIS to fix the error where OWA could not initialize (usually with the error Couldn’t find a base theme (folder name=base)). It appears this script must be run each time Exchange is updated.

Unfortunately, when I tried to run the script in EMS I received the following error:

[PS] C:\Users\Administrator.000>cd “C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Bin”
[PS] C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Bin>UpdateCas.ps1
Add-PSSnapin : The Windows PowerShell snap-in ‘Microsoft.Exchange.Management.PowerShell.E2010’ is not installed on this machine.
At C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\bin\UpdateCas.ps1:36 char:13
+ add-PSSnapin <<<< -Name Microsoft.Exchange.Management.PowerShell.E2010
+ CategoryInfo : InvalidArgument: (Microsoft.Excha…owerShell.E2010:String) [Add-PSSnapin], PSArgumentException
+ FullyQualifiedErrorId : AddPSSnapInRead,Microsoft.PowerShell.Commands.AddPSSnapinCommand
[10:00:01] ***********************************************
[10:00:01] * UpdateCas.ps1: 10/26/2014 10:00:01 AM
[10:00:04] Updating OWA/ECP on server DELLR710
[10:00:04] Finding ClientAccess role install path on the filesystem
[10:00:05] Updating OWA to version 14.3.174.1
[10:00:05] Copying files from ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\owa\Current’ to ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\owa\14.3.174.1’
[10:00:11] Found 1 OWA virtual directories.
[10:00:11] Updating OWA virtual directories
[10:00:11] Processing virtual directory with metabase path ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa’.
[10:00:11] Creating metabase entry IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1.
[10:00:11] Configuring metabase entry ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1’.
[10:00:11] Saving changes to ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1’
[10:00:11] Saving changes to ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa’
[10:00:11] Update OWA done.
[10:00:11] Updating ECP to version 14.3.174.1
[10:00:11] Copying files from ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\ecp\Current’ to ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\ecp\14.3.174.1’
[10:00:12] Update ECP done.
Remove-PSSnapin : No Windows PowerShell snap-ins matching the pattern ‘Microsoft.Exchange.Management.PowerShell.E2010’ were found. Check the pattern and then try the command again.
At C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\bin\UpdateCas.ps1:154 char:16
+ remove-PSSnapin <<<< -Name Microsoft.Exchange.Management.PowerShell.E2010
+ CategoryInfo : InvalidArgument: (Microsoft.Excha…owerShell.E2010:String) [Remove-PSSnapin], PSArgumentException
+ FullyQualifiedErrorId : NoPSSnapInsFound,Microsoft.PowerShell.Commands.RemovePSSnapinCommand

The update removed the E2010 and Support keys from the registry that the EMS was trying to call. Apparently Microsoft doesn’t want you running EMS scripts at the server. Instead we should be running them from a remote workstation. To see which plugins were available I ran the following command:

[PS] C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Bin>Get-PSSnapin –Registered
Name : Microsoft.Exchange.Management.PowerShell.Setup
PSVersion : 1.0
Description : Setup Tasks for the Exchange Server

Name : Windows.ServerBackup
PSVersion : 2.0
Description : This Windows PowerShell snap-in for Windows Server Backup contains cmdlets used to configure, run, and manage backups.

According to the command only two plugins have been installed. Fortunately the fix is easy – two keys need to be added to the registry. The two plugins that need their information added to the registry are Admin Tasks for the Exchange Server and Support Tasks for the Exchange Server. You can export the keys from a working Exchange server or you can create .reg files using the Pastebins below and merge the files.

Create two registry files by copying and pasting the code from Pastebin and then merge them by right-clicking on each one and selecting Merge. There is no need to reboot or restart Exchange services.
Merging registry packages

Now, when the Powershell script is run it completes without error:

[PS] C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Bin>UpdateCas.ps1
[10:48:17] ***********************************************
[10:48:17] * UpdateCas.ps1: 10/26/2014 10:48:17 AM
[10:48:17] Updating OWA/ECP on server DELLR710
[10:48:17] Finding ClientAccess role install path on the filesystem
[10:48:17] Updating OWA to version 14.3.174.1
[10:48:17] Copying files from ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\owa\Current’ to ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\owa\14.3.174.1’
[10:48:18] Found 1 OWA virtual directories.
[10:48:18] Updating OWA virtual directories
[10:48:18] Processing virtual directory with metabase path ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa’.
[10:48:18] Metabase entry ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1’ exists. Removing it.
[10:48:18] Creating metabase entry IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1.
[10:48:18] Configuring metabase entry ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1’.
[10:48:18] Saving changes to ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa/14.3.174.1’
[10:48:18] Saving changes to ‘IIS://DELLR710.AP.local/W3SVC/1/ROOT/owa’
[10:48:18] Update OWA done.
[10:48:18] Updating ECP to version 14.3.174.1
[10:48:18] Copying files from ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\ecp\Current’ to ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\ClientAccess\ecp\14.3.174.1’
[10:48:19] Update ECP done.
[PS] C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Exchange Server\V14\Bin>

The following image shows the two new entries for the missing plugins in the registry:
Registry

Registry code for Support Tasks on Pastebin
Registry code for Support Tasks on Pastebin

IIS: Cannot add duplicate collection entry

Running IIS 7.5 (Windows 7) on a development machine when I visit a site I have been working on and get the following error:

What?!? This was working just the other day and I hadn’t changed anything on this site. In fact, this site is just a vanilla WordPress site used for documentation. Other than a child theme there is no coding work done here.

So, I open up IIS and attempt to view the properties for this site and I am greeted with this error:

Ok this helps, there is a problem with the web.config file, having to do with default documents. I remember making a change in IIS recently with default documents. The problem is on line 6 of the web.config file so lets go look at that.

Not much here – were just adding a “index.php” as a default document to this site. Now, I know what is going on. When I setup PHP on this machine I added “index.php” to the list of the default documents for the site I was working on at that time. As I created new sites I added “index.php” as a default document local to the site.

A couple of days ago while adding another site and decided instead of adding “index.php” to the local site’s default documents I would add it to the IIS server’s list of default documents. This would be inherited by all the sites.

There it was I created a situation where the server had a default document of “index.php” and I had a site with a web.config file where I was attempting to add another default document of “index.php” – a duplicate collection entry.

Since, the addition of a default document was the only thing in the web.config the fix was simple – delete the web.config file (I renamed it to test before deleting). After deleting the web.config file IIS was able to display the site’s properties without error:

Viewing the default document properties for the site showed “index.php” was still a default document and it was inherited from the IIS server.