Category Archives: Tech Tips

Blocking poneytelecom.eu

You may have found this page because your getting hacked from a rev.poneytelecom.eu address or your receiving spam from this address range, you may even have found it due to it hosting malicious content.

Poney Telecom is an internet server company run from France has been at the centre of multiple allegations of organised international criminal activity for a few years with all warnings, court summons and legal demands to be closed ignored.

I personally have have seen portscans that come from a rev.poneytelecom.eu address, I have also seen malware that has been hosted via them also.

Just take a look at the chat on Twitter againt the hashtage #poneytelecom here it is mostly people complaining about hacking attempts.

There is more info here and here

Hosts To Block

Although there maybe many genuine users on this system, I have taken action and blocked all their ranges.

62.210.0.0/16
195.154.0.0/16
212.129.0.0/18
62.4.0.0/19
212.83.128.0/19
212.83.160.0/19
212.47.224.0/19
163.172.0.0/16
51.15.0.0/16
2001:bc8::/32





Windows 10 (Version 1607) Unable To Install KB3200970

  1. Check windows update for KB3197954
  1. Uninstall this update as this is the one that seems to cause the error – Reason: Checking the CBS.log file (located in c:\windows\logs\CBS) showed that Package 7 of KB3197954 was not installed.
  1. Copy the following file on to a notepad and save the file as “Repair.Bat”

net stop wuauserv

cd %systemroot%\SoftwareDistribution

ren Download Download.old

net start wuauserv

net stop bits

net start bits

net stop cryptsvc

cd %systemroot%\system32

ren catroot2 catroot2old

net start cryptsvc

  1. Run this Repair.Bat as Administrator
  1. Check if the c:\windows\system32\catroot2 has been renamed to c:\windows\system32\catroot2old
  1. Copy “Catroot2” file folder from c:\windows\system32 from a working PC where the updates have been installed successfully.
  1. Upon completing all the above reboot the PC.
  1. Post Restart, Check for updates.
  1. The updates should now download and install successfully.




Windows 10 (Version 1607) Unable To Install KB3200970

On a Windows 10 machine (version 1607) if you are unable to install update KB3200970 please try the following :-

1. Check windows update for KB3197954

2. Uninstall this update as this is the one that seems to cause the error – Reason: Checking the CBS.log file (located in c:\windows\logs\CBS) showed that Package 7 of KB3197954 was not installed.

3. Copy the following file on to a notepad and save the file as “Repair.Bat”

net stop wuauserv
cd %systemroot%\SoftwareDistribution
ren Download Download.old
net start wuauserv
net stop bits
net start bits
net stop cryptsvc
cd %systemroot%\system32
ren catroot2 catroot2old
net start cryptsvc

4. Run this Repair.Bat as Administrator

5. Check if the c:\windows\system32\catroot2 has been renamed to c:\windows\system32\catroot2old

6. Copy “Catroot2” file folder from c:\windows\system32 from a working PC where the updates have been installed successfully.

7. Upon completing all the above reboot the PC.

8. Post Restart, Check for updates.

9. The updates should now download and install successfully.




The above information was found on a Microsoft forum and resolved the issue for one of our customers.

windows-10

Can I Delete The WER Folder ?

Can I Delete The WER Folder ?

If your running low on space on your PC or server you have probably done a search for large files and found quite a few in the WER folder.

C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\WER\reportqueue  (ProgramData maybe a hidden folder)

or

C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\WER

WER stands for Windows Error Reporting (WER). Windows Error Reporting collects and offers to send post-error debug information (a memory dump), using the Internet, to the developer of an application that crashes or stops responding on a user’s desktop.

  • Windows Error Reporting: Windows Error Reporting in Windows is a feature that allows Microsoft to track and address errors relating to the operating system, Windows features, and applications. Windows Error Reporting gives users the opportunity to send data about errors to Microsoft and to receive information about solutions. Solution information can include instructions for working around a problem, or a link to the Windows Update Web site or another Web site for updated drivers, patches, or Microsoft Knowledge Base articles. Microsoft developers can use Windows Error Reporting as a problem-solving tool to address customer problems in a timely manner and to improve the quality of Microsoft products.
  • Problem Reports and Solutions: The Problem Reports and Solutions feature in Control Panel helps users track problem reports and any solution information they have received from Microsoft. Problem Reports and Solutions only helps the user store information. All Internet communication related to problem reports and solutions is handled by Windows Error Reporting, although the display of solution information in Problem Reports and Solutions uses a Web browser control.





Ask each time a problem occurs: Windows Error Reporting always prompts for consent before sending an error report.

wer-folder

What Is A MAC Address And How Do I Find It

What Is A MAC Address And How Do I Find It

The MAC (Media Access Control) address is a 12 digit unique code assigned to network devices.  Think of it like a serial number, no two devices will have the same MAC address.   The address is hard coded into the devices memory / firmware, it may also be on a sticker on the device.

MAC Address Format

MM:MM:MM:SS:SS:SS format.

Example MAC Address :

20-47-47-D4-A9-72

( 20-47-47 identifies the manufacturer as a Dell and the D4-A9-72 is the unique serial number )

The first 3 (MM) are the ID number of the manufacturer, which is assigned by an Internet standards body.

The second 3 (SS) are the serial number assigned by the manufacturer.

How To Find The MAC Address Of  A Network Device

Remember the MAC address is unique to each network device.  This will show you how to fine the network or WiFi MAC address.

Windows Operating System –  Open a command prompt and type ipconfig /all  this command will display the MAC address.

Unix and Linux – In the terminal, type ifconfig and press enter.

MacOS – Open “System Preferences”, then select  “Network”.

iPhone – Click “Settings” then “General” then “About” and it will be shown here. It might be called “WiFi Address”

Android – Click “Menu” then “Settings” then select “About Tablet” or “About Phone”. If this does not show you might have a option called “Hardware Information” if so click this.

Other Device – The address is usually on a sticker, just like a serial number, or if the device has a settings section in the software it should be listed in there.



How To Find The Manufacturer From The MAC Address

There is a number of good websites that allow you to lookup a MAC address and it will tell you the vendor.  If one does not work try the other’s as it depends what database lists they use.

http://www.coffer.com/mac_find/

https://macvendors.com/

https://www.wireshark.org/tools/oui-lookup.html

intel-nic-card

PC Network Card With MAC Address On A Sticker

Unable To Play DVD’s In Windows 10

Unable To Play DVD’s In Windows 10

Windows 10 was sold without an app to play DVDs on. Which is not good if you like to watch films on your PC.

Microsoft has released an app as a download. It costs £11.59. It also has an low overall rating.

For FREE you can download VLC, which is free and works just as well as any in built player.  We have been using it for years with no issues.




dvd-films

Windows Vista – Windows Update Stopped Working In September 2016

Windows Vista – Windows Update Stopped Working In September 2016

If your Windows Vista has stopped updating then this could be the fix you need.

The update agent can’t handle update KB3168965. You need to download and install this one manually.

More information – http://support.microsoft.com/kb/3168965

The Fix

Set automatic updates to “Never check for updates” then reboot and then install this update and then restart Windows.

KB3168965 update 32bit-
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=53206

KB3168965 update 64bit-
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=53242

Once you have done all this, you will need to reboot and then re enable updates and this should then be ok.

We have seen this issue 2 times now, and we have known of other company’s that have encountered this same error on Windows Vista so it must be quite common.




windows-vista

Samsung To Recall All Galaxy Note7 Devices

Samsung To Recall All Galaxy Note7 Devices

This really only effects people in the USA but this is such a big world wide story it would be wrong not to report on it.  After all the Note7 is the talk of the technology world at the moment.

Samsung said last month it pointed to a “battery cell issue” being the cause.

A report sent by the company to regulators was more specific, saying a production fault had caused some of the batteries to be slightly larger than intended, which had put pressure on them when they were fitted inside phones, according to a leak reported by Bloomberg.

The following has been issued by Samsung :-

Samsung has announced an expanded voluntary recall on all original and replacement Galaxy Note7 devices sold or exchanged in the United States in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and in partnership with carriers and retailers. Since the affected devices can overheat and pose a safety risk, we are asking consumers with a Galaxy Note7 to power it down and contact the carrier or retail outlet where they purchased their device.

Consumers who have a Galaxy Note7 device can now exchange their phone for any Samsung smartphone, or receive a refund, under the terms of the expanded U.S. Note7 Refund and Exchange Program.

If you bought your Galaxy Note7 from Samsung.com you should click here to process your refund or exchange. If you have questions, you should contact us at 1-844-365-6197 and we can help you.

U.S. Note7 Refund and Exchange Program

Under the terms of the U.S. Note7 Refund and Exchange Program, you have the following choices and can take these next steps beginning October 13, 2016 at 3pm ET:

  1. Exchange your current Galaxy Note7 for another Samsung smartphone and replacement of any Galaxy Note7 specific accessories with a refund of the price difference between devices
  2. Obtain a refund at your point of purchase

In addition, you may be eligible for additional incentives described below:
What if I want to exchange my Galaxy Note7 for another Samsung smartphone?
As a sign of our appreciation for your patience and loyalty, we are offering up to a $100 bill credit from select carrier or retail outlets if you exchange your Galaxy Note7 for another Samsung smartphone, less any incentive credits already received.

What if I already exchanged my Galaxy Note7 for another Samsung smartphone?
If you already exchanged your Galaxy Note7 device for another Samsung smartphone, you will receive up to a $75 bill credit from select carrier or retail outlets in addition to the $25 you previously received.

What if I want a refund for my Galaxy Note7?
If you choose to obtain a refund, you will receive up to a $25 bill credit from select carrier or retail outlets as a token of our appreciation and acknowledgement of your inconvenience, less any incentive credits already received.

What if I want to exchange my Galaxy Note7 for another brand of smartphone?
If you choose to exchange your Galaxy Note7 for another brand of smartphone, you will receive up to a $25 bill credit from select carrier or retail outlets as a token of our appreciation and acknowledgement of your inconvenience, less any incentive credits already received.

Affected Devices

The expanded recall applies to all Galaxy Note7 devices – including the original and replacement. Because your safety is important to us, if you are currently using a Galaxy Note7, please power down immediately and participate in our U.S. Note7 Refund and Exchange Program.

Refund

Contact the carrier or retail outlet where you purchased your Galaxy Note7. If you bought your Galaxy Note7 from Samsung.com visit samsung.com/us. If you have any questions, contact us at 1-844-365-6197 and we can help you.

Contacts

You can contact the carrier or retail outlet where you purchased your device. If you bought your Note7 from Samsung.com or have questions, you should contact us at 1-844-365-6197 and we can help you.

galaxy-note-7-16-1-1440x960

UK Call Charges

UK Call Charges

Most people want to know how much a phone call costs, but many are unsure what the cost is and what the different numbers mean.  We have put together this list of useful websites relating to UK telephone call charges, and what the different numbers mean.

It is always best to check on your providers official website for specific call charges on the tariff or plan you are on.

https://www.gov.uk/call-charges – A page on the government website which indicates the call charge rates for numbers, they indicate the possible range of costs associated with a number.

http://consumers.ofcom.org.uk/phone/how-much-does-a-phone-call-really-cost/ – A page from the telecoms regulator Ofcom. Here you can enter the first few digits or a number and it will tell you how much the call will cost you.

http://www.bt.com/tariffguide  – UK tariff guide from BT.  Check what a call costs from a BT landline.

https://www.police.uk/contact/101/ – Call charges to 101 non emergency number.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telephone_numbers_in_the_United_Kingdom – A list that shows what each area code is, plus explains other number formats.

http://www.bt.com/directory-enquiries/ – BT directory enquiries.  Lookup a number if you know a persons name and location.

http://www.saynoto0870.com – Lists alternative geographic numbers instead of 0870 (and others)  numbers for well known companies.  This can help save on your bills.




–           Please note we are not responsible for the information held on the above external web sites.  It is up to the site owners to ensure the sites are correct and up to date.

old-bt-phone

Windows 7 Professional and Windows 8.1 – End Of Life – 31st Oct 2016

Windows 7 Professional and Windows 8.1 – End Of Life – 31st Oct 2016

You should not be able to buy a new PC with Windows 7 Professional or Windows 8.1 after 31st October 2016.

Windows 7 Professional and Windows 8.1 will no longer be sold with PC’s from 31st October 2016.   When the retail software product reaches its end of sales date, it can still be purchased through OEMs (the company that made your PC) until it reaches the end of sales date (31st October 2016 in this case) for PCs with Windows preinstalled.

Windows 7 and 8 Facts

Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium, Ultimate was released on 22nd October 2009 and reached it’s end of retail sales on 31st October 2013 and it its end of sales for PC’s was 31st October 2014.

Windows 7 Professional was released on 22nd October 2009 and reached it’s end of retail sales on 31st October 2013 and it its end of sales for PC’s is 31st October 2016.

Windows 8 was released on 26th October 2012 and reached it’s end of retail sales on 31st October 2014 and it its end of sales for PC’s was 20th June 2016.

Windows 8.1 was released on 18th October 2013 and reached it’s end of retail sales on 1st September 2015 and it its end of sales for PC’s is 31st October 2016.

We now have Windows 10, which was first released on 29th July 2015, and is the current version of Windows.




For full details of product life please read – https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/13853/windows-lifecycle-fact-sheet

microsoft-logo