Monday, December 11, 2017

NextCloud on Raspberry Pi

Considering the new Raspberry Pi has mobile and Wi-Fi interfaces built-in, it makes a fantastic candidate for being a home access point as well as a NextCloud server.



Now there is also an official project, a Raspberry Pi image of the latest stable NextCloud release:

https://ownyourbits.com/2017/02/13/nextcloud-ready-raspberry-pi-image/



A wonderful candidate for the next winter hobby project.


Sunday, November 5, 2017

Use your SD card as Internal Storage on a Samsung phone

It requires some tinkling because Samsung disabled this native Android functionality (wtf?!).

In any case, the method works and my phone can breathe again.



Instructions

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Desktop software repository

My new software repository for PC desktop software is FossHub - https://www.fosshub.com/.

Monday, October 30, 2017

NextCloud: Open Source Personal Information Management

I've just revisited OwnCloud suite and found that a decent progress has been made to warrant a viable alternative to Google suite of PIM applications. Here is a quick rundown:
  • Calendar -> NextCloud Calendar online, Mozilla Thunderbird on PC
  • Contacts -> NextCloud Contacts online, Mozilla Thunderbird + CardBook on PC
  • Sync adapter for Android = DAVdroid
  • Tasks => OpenTasks or aCalendar+
  • Notes => NextCloud Notes (link) for Android
There is a number of providers offering free OwnCloud/NextCloud hosting. Even the minimal options with 500MB or 1GB should be free to host important files and PIM data (calendar, contacts).

NextCloud applications allow downloading calendars as .ics and contacts as .vcf files, which can be used for ocassional backup. If a server goes down, you always have the backup available on your device where the data was last edited.

The next step might be to run own NextCloud instance on Raspberry Pi or something similar.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Desktop multiplatform GUI options

Thinking of creating a desktop application nowadays is really a pain. Multiple platforms and no definitive way to share the UI although no major functionality changes have been introduced in a long time.

Some options, for .NET framework, are listed at GUI Toolkits page at Mono Project web site. One interesting framework is GTK#, which uses the very-popular GTK UI framework.

While .NET has been introduced onto multiple platforms, it will be interesting to see if GTK# works equally well for a multi-platform UI.


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Windows 10 update 1703

There is a bunch of new things added in Windows 10 update 1703, as listed here. Unfortunately, I do not need a single thing listed on that page.

My enthusiasm about new updates is currently at level zero. And I see it going into negative if new updates full of features I don't need keep coming along.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Quicken to GnuCash

Before making the jump, a proper research is in place. Here is a collection of resources related to migrating years of data from Quicken to GnuCash (Open Source).
  • Mobile app: 
    • MoneyManagerEx for Android. Can export .QIF files. Once the mapping is established in GnuCash, the transfer goes smoothly.
    • GnuCash for Android (link)
  • Multiple currencies
    • Turn on trading accounts
    • Create currency sub-accounts for every expense (! :S)
  • Investments
  • Migrate data
    • Quicken to GnuCash series (link
  • Support
    • GnuCash-User mailing list archives (link) and search (link)
    • Wiki (link)

Customization

Gnucash allows customization through various channels. If the database is left unencrypted, the easiest is to access it directly. There are also API endpoints that utilize GnuCash business logic and data retrieval. There are also extension points for Perl and Python.
  • piecash Python library (link) can be used to manipulate data directly in the database, like import prices from CSV or read existing records.
  • Gnucash Utilities, Python (link), repo (link), provides reports in Python.
  • Python bindings (not available on Windows).
  • Perl mods can be installed via install-fq-mods.cmd script in GnuCash bin directory. Run all Perl scripts in the bin directory.
    • perl gnc-fq-dump asx VHY 
    • perl gnc-fq-check 
    • perl gnc-fq-update 
Updating prices from command line: gnucash --add-price-quotes /path/to/file.gnucash

To-Do

  •  display exchange rate graph
    • read data using piecash
    • display the custom report using utilities
  • price update
    • add new provider(s) to Finance::Quote (Fixer, Morningstar)
(more to come)

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Ad blockers for Android

It seems that the currently popular solutions are:

  • uBlock Origin (link), Firefox add-on, for Internet browser
  • Block This (link) for the overall system

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Remote Desktop Manager

A new favorite remoted desktop connection manager - https://remotedesktopmanager.com/



Lots of options for importing existing settings, online backup, dark theme, export. Pretty smooth operation, as well.


Monday, September 18, 2017

Desktop Clock

Finally a decent analog clock for desktop .



http://www.clocx.net/



Transparency, variety of backgrounds, seconds arm, calendar...

The only missing feature is the ability to have multiple instances or clocks for various time zones.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Identity Server resources

As Identity Server in .Net speeds along, with breaking changes in the stack all over the place, here are some resources that might help resolve numerous questions and issues that arise during implementation:
  • When looking for an example, check the Samples repository
  • Example on how to mix b2b and user authentication in the host (link)

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Free Web Hosting

Here are a few providers I've tried, along with the findings.

Google

Pro: Reliable.
Con: Not so simple to deploy the site or link a domain.

000webhost

Pro: FTP access. Allows domain redirect.
Con: ?

Other

Link to some current hosting providers:
  • 15 Best Free Web Hosting Sites (2017) (link)

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Unable to run MMC in author mode on Windows 7

A strange error preventing me from opening the management console (MMC) started appearing recently. This is probably a result of some Windows Update.

"You cannot open Microsoft Management Console in author mode because of current computer policies."

There was nothing set in the policies, though, that is visible from GPEdit. Fortunately, the solution is simple: set the registry key

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\software\policies\Microsoft\MMC\RestrictAuthorMode to 0.

Source: link

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Android Instant Apps

OK, if this is not so new it is at least unexpected. From my side, at least.

We've had applets, Silverlight, and the myriad of JavaScript frameworks and libraries. However, the way Android apps are evolving seems rather interesting. I guess this is how apps were supposed to work. The "runner" downloads just the portion required to work.

Sounds like a hybrid between an HTML and mobile app. Let's see if and how will it work. Exciting to try to enable this in some existing apps and get out of the cycle of committing changes, merging, compiling, publishing, and waiting for beta testers to run the app for a while, and then the regular users to update. And some of them never do.


Source: Android Instant Apps

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Unit Testing with C#

It is refreshing, after all these years, to see the same frameworks around. Matured, they are now recommended as the best options for unit testing in the C# world.

There's a newcomer, though - AutoFixture. Time to add it to the arsenal.



In summary:

  • xUnit
  • Moq
  • AutoFixture
are the things you need for unit and integration testing. Visual Studio nowadays includes a decent test runner GUI. It only takes installing the runner package for xUnit to recognize the tests.



Source: The Holy Trinity of C# Unit Testing (link)

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Google Music Manager - "Could not identify your computer"

Here's a note in case I forget what the actual reason for this message was or how it was resolved.

After not using Google Music Manager for a while, I tried to log in to upload a couple of recordings to share. Unfortunately, I could not log in on the PC. It was giving me the "Could not identify your computer" error message after going through the 2-step authentication.

Reading online pointed out that, for whatever reason, Music Manager clings to a device's MAC address. This was a good pointer.

Checking the network device properties / configure / advanced, there was only one property available - Network Address. Fortunately, this is exactly the one I needed. It was set to Not Present, as it normally should. As I was connecting using USB tethering, I guess this value was never really set.

So I set the value manually to 1F-2E-3D-4C-5B-6A. This is a simple value that follows the specs. And, voila! It worked.

In the meantime, I also tried switching to a Wi-Fi connection but that did not work somehow. In the properties, there was no property for Network Address so I could not see what it was nor modify it.

Update 2017-11-25: Music Manager was unable to connect out of the blue. The settings were all the same. This time I had to connect to a Wi-Fi access point, reinstall Music Manager and it connected fine. Then I switched to USB tethered connection again and it worked.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Public ClipArt Libraries

Here is a list of public clipart libraries:
  • Open Clipart (link), a large collection of public .SVG drawings
More link collections:
  • Free Vector Graphics (link) 1
  • Free Vector Graphics (link) 2

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Quickly test SQL connection

The quickest way to test an SQL connection is to create a new file with .UDL extension.

Then simply double-click on it to open and a connection properties window will open up, allowing to test a server connection.

Unfortunately, this will not help if you need to use integrated authentication but have to impersonate another user.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Grid/Table Options for MVC

Here are a few nice-looking options I've tried recently, while looking for a working grid/table solution for an MVC application:
  • DataTables.Net (link)
  • MVCGrid.net (link)
  • Asp.Net MVC Grid (link), based on MVCContrib
All of these apparently support server-side paging and sorting.
 

Monday, January 9, 2017