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Windows 7: High CPU usage due to system interrupts (Deferred procedure calls and interrupt service routines)

Submitted by Druss on Sat, 2009-12-05 21:47

Windows 7, much as I enjoy using it (although the shine has worn off a li'l bit), has a few niggles. One of these, which really annoyed me was the sudden seemingly random spike in CPU usage that, once it occurred, never went away until I rebooted the system. The task manager did not list any application as consuming any significant attention from the CPU. However, the resource monitor (which can be reached from the performance tab in the task manager) provided the answer as I found the innocuous sounding "system interrupts" process consuming a steady 40-45% CPU.

Windows XP: find uptime

Submitted by Druss on Wed, 2009-06-24 00:18

I had no idea how long the windows box I'm using has been up for... While on Linux, I could've just typed uptime to find out, it appears that m$ never expected their systems to be up long enough to bother with such a utility.

A little digging around and some experimentation unearthed the following methods for finding this out on XP:

  1. Open a command prompt and type "systeminfo" and look for "system up time". This might require an updated system.

What is vjOcx1.9?

Submitted by Druss on Tue, 2009-06-23 01:22

While doing some routine cleaning up of installed programs on my Windows box, I ran into an entry that simply said "vjOcx1.9"... I had no idea what this was, nor was any related information terribly helpful. Some googling later, I found that that this is very like connected to TV4Africa, a p2p TV player that IIRC, I installed to watch snooker via the net (It didn't work).

Hope this helps somebody out there :)

Installation Failed: D:\I386\asms (Incorrect Function)

Submitted by Druss on Wed, 2009-06-10 12:21

During a fresh install of Windows XP SP3, upon reboot after the initial copying of files, I ran into an error message stating that there were CRC checksum issues with a file on my CD-ROM, namely D:\i386\asms.(sys?). Google divined that I very likely had a problem with the disc media... but considering the fact that I've installed XP using the same media very recently, I doubted this to be the case.

Edimax EW-7316Ug Wireless 11b/g adapter and Linux

Submitted by Druss on Sun, 2009-05-31 01:53

Today, I purchased and installed the Edimax EW-7316Ug wireless 802.11b/g USB Adapter. While I usually approach the purchase of hardware for Linux - especially for non-mainstream products - with a certain degree of trepidation, I was heartened to note during my pre-purchase exercise that the Edimax page specifically mentioned Linux compatibility and even provided a source code download. How rare is that?!

File renamer: Métamorphose

Submitted by Druss on Sat, 2008-12-13 23:25

For those of you out there who have been hankering for a decent free, open-source file renaming utility, I highly recommend that you give Métamorphose a shot. I've been using the v2 beta in XP and it's been excellent. It's written in Python and is also available for Linux, BSD and Macs.

There are a few minor UI bugs though, but I'm sure that they'll be sorted out in due course.

Hooray for FOSS!

CHM files: Page cannot be displayed

Submitted by Druss on Wed, 2008-09-24 13:20

I'm not sure if this was related to my recent install of XP SP3 (I haven't done anything else of note recently...), but I found out today that I was unable to view CHM files on my system. Most of my manuals are stored in CHM format, so, this was something of a pain. While the file itself opened fine, and the content list pane was accessible, the content pane was not; I instead was greeted with a "The page cannot be displayed" error message.

Enabling WPA2 support for Windows XP

Submitted by Druss on Tue, 2008-04-15 14:24

WPA 2 is pretty much the default encryption standard for wifi networks nowadays. However, standard XP installations do not support it by default. To enable WPA2 support, an update - KB893357 - needs to be downloaded and installed.

If you are not keen on going through the whole Genuine Windows (sic) crap, googling for KB893357 should provide you with a direct download link for the update.

Realtek audio: Microphone issues

Submitted by Druss on Mon, 2007-12-31 23:41

I had an issue earlier today where my microphone was not being detected on my semi-new Windows box. The system uses a Gigabyte motherboard with onboard Realtek audio. All drivers from the driver CD had been installed. But my microphone and front panel input options in the Windows Volume Control were all greyed out.

I am not sure what the exact solution was, but I did all the following things:

    Windows driver updates with Driveragent

    Submitted by Druss on Tue, 2007-12-18 13:00

    Unlike Linux where updates for both your hardware and software are taken care of neatly, Windows usually requires some manual labour when it comes to keeping drivers for your hardware up to date. This niche can be filled through the use of Driveragent, a service that checks your present hardware setup and recommends appropriate updates.

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