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Process substitution in bash

There’s a very clever syntax in bash (and several other unix shells) that allows the output / input for subcommands to be hooked together. This can be used to secure mysql passwords in scripts. e.g. mysql –defaults-file=


Windows 7 Activation

Windows 7 is available for purchase at a discount from the Microsoft student and teacher “Ultimate Steal” website. This sounds great. Now to upgrade from 32-bit Vista to 64-bit Windows 7 you need to do a clean install. So far so good. Unfortunately,…


Escape single quotes in bash

Some helpful instructions on Stuart Colville’s blog explain how to do this. To produce e.g. abc'def, you need to enter $echo 'abc'\''def' The '\'' first closes the single quotes, then puts a literal (escaped) ' and then opens single quotes again.


Nokia E63 Wireless access to Eduroam in Oxford

I found a good set of instructions for connecting to the Eduroam Wifi service from the website of the University of Valencia. These work for me in Oxford. (Local mirror).


Disable annoying password prompts in Word 2007

This Microsoft support article explains how to prevent annoying password prompts that appear when downloading documents from password protected websites using Word 2007.


Netgear WGT624 v4 router

It is possible to gain root access on this router. You need to follow the telnetEnable procedure on the web, using the username/password Gearguy/Geardog as for the previous routers. Then, you telnet to port 23 and will get a “login:” prompt. At that…


Venison Toad-in-the-Hole

Serves 2 Ingredients: 6 Sainsbury’s Taste-the-difference venison sausages 6oz plain flour 2 large eggs pinch of salt & pepper 6 fl oz milk 4 fl oz water Instructions: 1. Place sausages in a pyrex / ceramic dish about 15 x 25cm and 3cm…


Restore HP iPAQ

My HP iPAQ ran out of battery this morning. When I started it up, the memory was blank. When I tried to restore my files using Windows Mobile Device Center under Windows Vista, I got an annoying message saying that “Restore cannot be…


Hacking the Netgear WGT624 v4 router

I own a Netgear WGT624 v4 router. This router runs a MIPS embedded version of Linux and I was curious whether it is possible to get shell access. So far, I have failed, but in case anyone else is interested, I did find…


Fix flat screen monitor with pencil eraser

I scratched my flat screen (LCD or TFT) monitor some months ago. For a while, I’ve just lived with the damage. This evening, however, I tried a trick I found on the web. I rubbed hard on the scratch with a white pencil…