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this kernel requires an x86-64 CPU, but only detects an i686 CPU, unable to boot

Using Virtualbox (4.3.6) on an XP64 machine, I ran into the following error while trying to install a 64-bit version of Ubuntu:

this kernel requires an x86-64 CPU, but only detects an i686 CPU, unable to boot

This happens even if the host machine is a 64-bit machine. To fix this, reboot the box and enter the BIOS. Look around for a virtualisation setting and enable it. Save and exit the BIOS configuration screen.

Updating Windows Installer on XP 64-bit

I ran into a hitch while trying to install the latest version of TortoiseSVN on my XP 64-bit Windows installation. Apparently, the entire world has forgotten about the existence of this variety of Windows. There's absolutely no mention of it anywhere on TortoiseSVN's installer page. The MSI installer failed stating that the version of Windows Installer that I was using was dated and that I needed to update my version of XP (x86) to SP3 or some other drivel like that. TortoiseSVN has no manual install option either. I did the whole Windows Update thing as well, to no avail.

Tranferring a file using PuTTY's pscp

Instead of trying to recollect what the exact syntax for pscp is, here's a list of examples for future reference. In these examples, I'm transferring a file (bar.zip) from a Windows host to a Linux server (with the destination path of /home/druss/Desktop/).

"C:\Program Files (x86)\PuTTY\pscp.exe" -scp -P 2134 -pw mypassword bar.zip druss@foo.dyndns.info:/home/druss/Desktop/

MySQL encoding error: Warning (Code 1366): Incorrect string value: '\xE9, a <...' for column 'body' at row 3

While performing a CSV import recently, I ran into the following error messages:

Warning (Code 1366): Incorrect string value: '\xE9, a <...' for column 'body' at row 3
Warning (Code 1366): Incorrect string value: '\xE6. He ...' for column 'body' at row 24
Warning (Code 1366): Incorrect string value: '\xE9, and...' for column 'body' at row 26

The first message was triggered due to the accented é in the word, protegé, in the input. The rest of the field was not imported. The others were similarly triggered.

Initializing new hard disk: The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error

I got a new 3TB hard disk. While it's being detected in Windows 7, initializing it has proved to be impossible as I keep running into the following error:

The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error

After testing this one a couple of different systems and in Linux, I have arrived at the conclusion that the drive is screwed. Time to get it replaced.

Firefox taskbar pinned icon opening window with a duplicate icon

I accidentally unpinned my Windows 7 Firefox taskbar icon. While I was able to re-add it easily enough, clicking it to open FF resulting in a duplicate icon being spawned which was where FF was opened. I had to google a bit to find a fix and here it is:

Shifting the pitch (and tempo) of music rather than retuning your guitar

If you, like me, enjoy playing on your guitar to music from your PC, you will share my annoyance at the fact that bands often tune up or down a step or so for different songs. While it might be simple enough to tune your guitar up and down as and when necessary, I think that everybody will agree that it's a bit of a pain. Here's a solution for people like me who tend to have, well, an indolent approach to their guitar.

Windows 7: Moving your user profile to another directory/partition/drive

Continuing on with my workarounds for moving system files around, today, I decided to look into moving my user profile folder to a different partition. While IIRC, it used to be possible (in earlier versions of Windows) to do this by setting the home folder to an appropriate value in the user management snapshot, that did not work for me.

Windows 7: Changing the location of system temporary files and browser caches

My windows machine is running off a bum drive and seeing as to how HDD prices are temporarily ridiculously high at the moment, I've decided to attempt a few workarounds to see if I can continue to use this erratically faulty drive for a couple of more months. The issue with the drive is in itself unknown. It just locks up suddenly with the HDD LED continuously on. Windows continues to be active for a while, but not terribly responsive. Sometimes, the issue sorts itself out after a while. Other times, the system reboots.

sed: Deleting all lines between two types of lines

Today, I made quite an impression on my furniture thanks to incessant contact between it and my illustrious head. This, as usual, was due to my looking for a clean regex to solve my issue while working with text files in Vim. My task was, I initially believed, quite simple: delete all the lines that are sandwiched between two types/patterns of lines. In this case, the top slice of the sandwich consisted of a line which was entirely a number and the bottom slice was a line entirely populated with underscores.

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