Windows 7 is here

Windows 7 has a great showing in Singapore I heard. Congrats:

Interestingly, what’s missing in the video is Windows ME. It’s fine, it will not be missed anyway. Windows 7 is a great operating system offering from Microsoft. I’ve been using it since its prerelease. It’s worth the upgrade and the money.

Security update, time to upgrade Django

Django has a 0-day security vulnerability. It’s time to upgrade:

Security updates released

Today the Django project is issuing a set of releases to remedy a security issue. This issue was disclosed publicly by a third party on a high-traffic mailing list, and attempts have been made to exploit it against live Django installations; as such, we are bypassing our normal policy for security disclosure and immediately issuing patches and updated releases.

Description of vulnerability

Django’s forms library included field types which perform regular-expression-based validation of email addresses and URLs. Certain addresses/URLs could trigger a pathological performance case in this regular expression, resulting in the server process/thread becoming unresponsive, and consuming excessive CPU over an extended period of time. If deliberately triggered, this could result in an effective denial-of-service attack.

Affected versions

Any Django application making use of EmailField or URLField in the following versions is vulnerable:

  • Django development trunk
  • Django 1.1
  • Django 1.0

Read more at Django blog

Since when did I even install Office 2003

I have Office 2007 installed and somehow Office 2003 creep in too. I wonder what did that installation.

Since when did I even install Office 2003
Since when did I even install Office 2003

I can’t even find in in my start menu. Now I have to upgrade something I didn’t install. This is amazing. And my update is almost 700 MB. Really huge.

CakePHP 1.2 and PHP 5.3 doesn’t play nice

I just upgraded all the software only to discover PHP got upgraded to 5.3. That’s fast, PHP 5.3 isn’t out too long ago and it’s in the Macosforge repository. Even the CakePHP update released on August 9 did not include PHP 5.3 compatibility.

Perhaps it’s time to update the CakePHP requirements and be indicative of the lack of support for PHP 5.3.

Now the library is throwing deprecated notices all around “Assigning the return value of new by reference is deprecated in…”. Also there is a PHP warning:

[code lang=”php”]PHP Warning: strtotime(): It is not safe to rely on the system’s timezone settings. You are required to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected ‘Asia/Singapore’ for ‘SGT/8.0/no DST’ instead in…[/code]

To stop the deprecated notices, I had to modify Cake’s core, not something I like to do.

I added the line “error_reporting (E_ALL & ~E_DEPRECATED);” at the top of /cake/libs/object.php. I also updated /cake/libs/configure.php by changing “error_reporting(E_ALL);” to “error_reporting (E_ALL & ~E_DEPRECATED);”.


This doesn’t solve the problem exactly, it just suppresses the deprecation notices so I can continue working. For a PHP 5.3 compatible CakePHP, you’ll need to use CakePHP 1.3 which currently isn’t stable. I’ll definitely be trying it soon but in the meantime I’ll just have to suppress error reporting.

Update: jdbartlett commented on a better way:

[code lang=”php”]if (defined(“E_DEPRECATED”)) error_reporting(E_ALL ^ E_DEPRECATED);[/code]

If youโ€™re not doing any debugging, you can add the above code to the top of /app/webroot/index.php and suppress the error messages without editing the core. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks jdbartlett! You saved me time. ๐Ÿ™‚

Upgrading the Acer Aspire One A150 netbook

It was a sudden decision to head to Sim Lim. I made several acquisitions there:

  1. Laptop memory, it’s a 677 Mhz DDR2 (1GB) SO-DIMM whatever Kingston RAM.
  2. Desktop memory, it’s a 800 Mhz DDR2 (2 GB) Kingston RAM.
  3. A SATA to USB convertor.

I opened up my Acer Aspire One bravely voiding the warranties. I own an Acer Aspire One that I gotten upon a SingNet contract renewal. It’s a netbook that came at a time I wanted to get a notebook. I treat it as a sign from the gods that I should delay a notebook purchase (to yet another year). It comes with 1GB memory, of which 512 is soldered onboard. I followed a hardware guide to open the netbook and add in new memory.

For the Acer Aspire One A150, the maximum amount of memory it can go is 1.5 GB. I chose the option to rid the 512 MB RAM and placed in a 1024 MB RAM. I don’t really know what I was doing. I hesitated before I buy but I thought, heck, it’s just 18 bucks and I’m already here so let’s get it and try it out.

Acer Aspire One A150 opened up to add memory 1
Acer Aspire One A150 opened up to add memory 1

Here’s how it look like when it’s all naked. It’s the first time I opened a notebook and I’m extra careful with everything. I didn’t follow the full instructions as it didn’t suit my model but the guide still help a lot.

Acer Aspire One A150 opened up to add memory 2
Acer Aspire One A150 opened up to add memory 2

It become apparent that Acer designed the netbook without upgrading concerns in mind. The DDR2 slot is located all the way inside, you have to unscrew everything, rid the keyboard, the daughter board and sound card to reach the memory slot. I almost given up at the keyboard stage actually (that’s when I realized the guide has 4 more pages).

I fixed in the RAM and put everything back and am glad it is all working fine. But it’s certainly a task not for the fainthearted.

I also fixed in more RAM in my desktop my Windows Vista and Windows 7 are both significantly quicker. Photoshop did launch slightly quicker. I don’t feel an improvement in the start up time though. As for the netbook, I have yet to feel much improvement actually.