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Mon, Nov 15, 2021 10:23 pm

Converting a transparent PNG file to GIF in Corel PSP X4

I wanted to convert a transparent PNG file to a transparent GIF file for placement on web pages in an area on the pages that had a black background. I could have modified the code for the pages to use the PNG file that had been provided to me, but I thought I could easily convert the PNG image I had been provided, which was an image of stylized white text on a black background, to a GIF image and just replace the old GIF image on the site with the one I had recently been given. Since I use Corel PaintShop Pro X4 for image editing, I thought I could just use its "save as" feature to resave the file in the GIF format. But when I saved the transparent PNG file as a GIF file expecting transparency to be maintained by clicking on File, selecting Save As and then choosing GIF as the new format for the file, I found that transparency was not maintained in the GIF file. I was able to produce the GIF file I needed by the following steps, however.

[ More Info ]

[/os/windows/software/graphics/corel/psp] permanent link

Sun, Oct 31, 2021 9:53 pm

Trimming an MP4 Video on a Microsoft Windows 10 system

On a Microsoft Windows 10 system, if you wish to save just a portion of a video that is in MP4 format, you can do so if you are viewing the video in the Movies & TV application, which is the default program for playing videos, by clicking on the pencil icon near the bottom, right side of the window. If you double-click on the file for the video, it will likely open in the Movies & TV app, but if that is not the default program for playing videos, you should be able to open it in the program by right-clicking on the file and choosing Open with then selecting Movies & TV. Once you click on the pencil item in the application, you can then choose Trim which appears beneath Edit in Photos. You should then see white circles at the beginning and end of a white line at the bottom of the video that represents the length of the video. Yoy can drag those white circles to the points in the video that you wish to be the starting and stopping points for the video. E.g., if I had a video that was several hours long, but I only wanted the first hour of the video, I could drag the white circle at the bottom, ride side of the window to the left until I saw 1:00, which represents 1 hour and 0 minutes. Once you have just the portion of the video timeline you want isolated with the white circles, click on Save as, which appears near the top, right side of the window next to an icon that depicts a pencil over a 3 1/2" floppy disk. You can then chose a file name you want for the new copy as the program doesn't change your original file, but makes a copy with just the portion of the original file you opted to save. By default, the program will append "_trim" to the original file name. If it is a large video, you may need to wait a few minutes for the new file to be created from the larger original file.

[/os/windows/software/audio-video] permanent link

Fri, Mar 05, 2021 1:38 pm

Obtain Monitor Manufacturer Information Using PowerShell

I wanted to be able to obtain information on a monitor attached to a Windows 10 desktop system, including the manufacturer, model number, serial number, and date of manufacture, from a command-line interface (CLI). One way to do that is by using PowerShell, which Microsoft provides as part of its Windows operating system. You can open a PowerShell window on a Microsoft Windows 10 system by typing PowerShell in the "Type here to search" field at the bottom of the Windows display. You should see the Windows PowerShell app listed as an option you can click on to open a PowerShell window. If you type gwmi WmiMonitorID -Namespace root\wmi at the prompt and hit enter, you will see information similar to the following output displayed.

PS C:\> gwmi WmiMonitorID -Namespace root\wmi


__GENUS                : 2
__CLASS                : WmiMonitorID
__SUPERCLASS           : MSMonitorClass
__DYNASTY              : MSMonitorClass
__RELPATH              : WmiMonitorID.InstanceName="DISPLAY\\HPN360C\\5&2c03a83e&0&UID262_0"
__PROPERTY_COUNT       : 9
__DERIVATION           : {MSMonitorClass}
__SERVER               : YTTERBIUM
__NAMESPACE            : root\wmi
__PATH                 : \\YTTERBIUM\root\wmi:WmiMonitorID.InstanceName="DISPLAY\\HPN360C\\5&2c03a83e&0&UID262_0"
Active                 : True
InstanceName           : DISPLAY\HPN360C\5&2c03a83e&0&UID262_0
ManufacturerName       : {72, 80, 78, 0...}
ProductCodeID          : {51, 54, 48, 67...}
SerialNumberID         : {67, 78, 75, 48...}
UserFriendlyName       : {72, 80, 32, 51...}
UserFriendlyNameLength : 13
WeekOfManufacture      : 12
YearOfManufacture      : 2020
PSComputerName         : YTTERBIUM



PS C:\>

[More Info ]

[/os/windows/PowerShell] permanent link

Mon, Apr 27, 2020 9:44 pm

Formatting endnotes in accordance with the Chicago Manual of Style

If you are using Microsoft Word to write a paper adhering to the Chicago Manual of Style (CMS) guidelines for citations that appear in the endnotes section of the paper, references to endnotes should be made in the paper using Arabic numerals at the end of sentences with the numbers put in superscript.

Example

Ludwig considered it an honor that his books were among those burned by the Nazis in 1933.1

Endnote

1. Emil Ludwig, Three Portraits: Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin (New York: Alliance Book Corporation: 1940), 49.

You can configure Microsoft Word for CMS style citations by clicking on the References tab and then selecting a Chicago option for the Style option. Microsoft Word 2010 lists "Chicago Fifteenth Edition" as the CMS option.

[ More Info ]

[/os/windows/office/word] permanent link

Wed, Apr 22, 2020 4:44 pm

Disabling the execution of JavaScript in Foxit Reader

If you are concerned about malicious JavaScript being hidden inside a PDF file, you can upload the file to Google's VirusTotal site which will scan the file with many antimalware programs. The scan results will show if any of the dozens of antivirus programs the site uses in its scans have detected malware in the file. However, for additional security, you may want to know if the file contains code that will automatically be executed when you open the file in a PDF viewer or if it contains embedded JavaScript. The VirusTotal site will provide that information. For PDF files, you will see "pdf" displayed in a gray oval underneath the file that was scanned. If there is code within the PDF file that will automatically be executed when you open the file, next to that oval will be another one with "autoaction" in it. Embedded JavaScript is denoted by an oval with "js-embedded" within it. Just because you see "autoaction" or "js-embedded" doesn't mean the JavaScript is malicious, but if you want to ensure any malicious JavaScript isn't executed, if you are using the Foxit Reader program to view PDF files, you can disable its execution of JavaScript.

To disable the execution of JavaScript in Foxit Reader Version 5.3.1.0606, take the following steps:

  1. From the menu at the top of the Foxit Reader window, click on Tools and select Preferences.
  2. Click on JavaScript on the left side of the Preferences window that will open and then uncheck the check box for "Enable JavaScript Actions."

    Foxit Reader - disabling JavaScript

Also click on Trust Manager from the Prferences menu and make sure that the "Enable Safe Reading Mode" check box is checked. In the description of that setting, you will see "Foxit recommends that you check this option for controlling unauthorized actions and data transmissions; including URL connections, launching external files and running JavaScript functions to efficiently avoid attacks from malicious documents."

Foxit Reader - disabling JavaScript

[/os/windows/software/pdf/Foxit] permanent link

Sat, Mar 28, 2020 10:53 pm

Counting the number of rows in a table in Microsoft Word

If you wish to determine the number of rows present in a table in Microsoft Word 2010 on a Microsoft Windows system, highlight all of the rows in the table by putting the mouse pointer in the top or bottom row and then dragging it downwards or upwards until all of the rows are highlighted. Then right-click and select Table Properties. Under the Row tab you should see the number of rows listed.

Table Properties - Rows

If you don't see the row count, click on the Table or Column tab and then go back to the Row information by selecting the Row tab again. You should then see the row count displayed.

[/os/windows/office/word] permanent link

Mon, Feb 10, 2020 10:15 pm

Windows 7 Backup Failed Due to Detection of Virus in Shadow Copy

Microsoft Windows 10 comes with a backup program that will allow you to create a system image for backups. You can get to it by right-clicking on the Windows Start button and choosing "Settings" then "Backup," which is under "Update & Security," and then selecting "Go to Backup and Restore (Windows 7)." That program was being used to backup a Windows 10 system every weekend, but when I checked the status of backups for the system, I saw a message stating "The last backup did not complete successfully." I clicked on the "More information" button and saw a "Check your backup" message stating that the "Operation did not complete successfully because the file contains a virus or potentially unwanted software." When I clicked on "Show Details," I saw the time of the failed backup and "Error code: 0x800700E1."

[ More Info ]

[/os/windows/win10] permanent link

Tue, Jan 28, 2020 10:16 pm

Determining the time a registry key was last updated

When I ran a scan of a Windows System with Spybot Search & Destroy 1.62, it reported it found a Windows registry key associated with GhostMail - it identified GhostMail as adware. To check the registry key, I typed regedit in the "Type here to search" field at the bottom of the screen and then selected the "Registry Editor" app when it appeared in the list of returned results (you can also open the application by typing regedit and hitting enter at a command prompt. I then navigated to the relevant key. I wanted to determine when the registry was created or at least when it was last modified. You can't see that information in the Windows Registry Editor, but you can create a text file that will contain that information by right-clicking on a key and choosing "Export" to generate a text file - select "Text Files (*.txt)" in the "Save as type" field, not the default value of "Registration Files (*.reg)." The text file will contain the key as well as the time it was last written to:

Key Name:HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-21-3084690208-3888753220-1328190817-1115\Software\Albert Yale
Class Name:<NO CLASS>
Last Write Time:8/16/2019 - 10:54 PM

In this case, the date on the key was months ago, so didn't explain recent problems on the user's PC and since Spybot - Search & Destroy didn't locate anything else, the registry key may have been a remnant of something removed many months ago.

[ More Info ]

[/os/windows/registry] permanent link

Wed, Jan 01, 2020 10:15 pm

Minecraft libraries failed to download

When I tried to install Minecraft on a Microsoft Windows system using the Windows Installer file I had downloaded, I saw the error message "These libraries failed to download. Try again. org.ow2.asm:asm-all:5.2."

Libraries failed to download

I then clicked on the link for "Installer" rather than "Windows Installer on the website from which I had downloaded the installation file, which resulted in a .jar file being downloaded. I right-clicked on the .jar file, forge-1.12.2-14.23.5.2768-installer.jar, and chose "Open with" then "Java(TM) Platform SE binary". I was then able to install the Minecraft client. When the client was successfully installed, I saw the message "Successfully installed client profile forger for version forge 1.12.2-14.23.5.2768 into launcher and grabbed 1 required libraries."

Successfully installed client profile forge

Note: These are notes from an October 12, 2019 installation that I hadn't posted, but I am posting now in case I encounter a similar error again.

[/os/windows/software/games/minecraft] permanent link

Mon, Mar 25, 2019 11:07 pm

Determining which process has a file open with Process Explorer

When I attempted to copy an Outlook .ost file to an external USB flash drive, I saw the message below:

An unexpected error is keeping you from copying the file. If you continue to receive this error, you can use the error code to search for help with this problem.

Error 0x80070021: The process cannot access the file because another process has locked a portion of the file.

I didn't have Outlook open and didn't know what other process was using the file. One way to find out which process has a lock on a file is to use the Process Explorer utility provided by Microsoft. The program is free and you don't need administrator rights on a system to use it. To determine a process that is using the file, you can hit the Ctrl and F keys simultaneously, which will bring up a search box where you can type the name of the relevant file. When you click on the Search button, you should be able to see the name of the process that has a lock on the file as well as the process ID (PID) for that process. E.g., in this case I could see that lync.exe was using the file.

[ More Info ]

[/os/windows/processes] permanent link

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