Marketing Ethics

I’ve worked for software companies for over 20 years and in IT for 30 years and in that time I’ve seen several example of dodgy ethics in business. I am pleased to say in recent times things have improved. The advent of Social Media and the constant feeding of “Breaking News” in to our lives has ramped up the ante and means that you cannot get away with things like you used to. That is until last week when a certain US-based ISV decided to post this in their main blog:- Blog This is a blatant attempt to convert customers from a direct competitor by spreading FUD by suggesting that the company is “up for sale” and that this “could have a significant impact on the continuity of your IT processes….”. Even if the company was up for sale, in most cases a sold company has an injection of cash and business prowess from its new owners that would be very likely to boost its products. The question I have, however, is does this sort of negative advertising actually work? Would your average blog post reader be influenced by this? or would they see it as ethically questionable and refrain from […]

Upgrade Windows 2012 Server

I was building a Windows 2012 R2 test server and needed to upgrade from the eval version to the Standard Edition. I did some research and discovered that this could be achieved pretty easily using the DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management) command on an elevated command line. For starters, you can figure out what your current edition is using the following command (running as admin) DISM /online /Get-CurrentEdition You can also figure which editions you can upgrade to by using this command:- DISM /online /Get-TargetEditions – here is an example output from that:- DISM command example Once you’ve figured out what editions you can upgrade to, you then use the following command DISM /online /Set-Edition:<edition ID> /ProductKey:XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX /AcceptEula, where <edition ID> equals one of those listed in the Get-TargetEditions output and the relevant valid license key. Once done, the server will need to restart twice.

Windows Key Fix

If you run in to a problem with your Windows Key not working in Windows 10, or perhaps the Cortana Search bar not working, then I may have a solution for you. If you google for a solution you will probably bump in to several ads encouraging your download a program to “optimise” your computer. Personally I would advise against that unless you are sure it is coming from a trusted source. For me, my problem was resolved with a solution I found on Tenforums, which is to run a powershell command in administrator mode. This might sound complex, but it is pretty easy. Hit Control + Alt + Delete to and then select Task Manager Click on More Details Click File –> New Task then type powershell and check “create task with administrative privileges” A blue Powershell window will  open, then type in to this window the following command:- Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml”} (You can copy and paste this, then Right Click the Powershell window and select Edit –> Paste to save you typing it in) Your screen should look like this:- Then hit enter and watch the process unfold. You will probably get some […]

Customer Satisfaction

What does customer satisfaction mean to you? It is it getting your questions answered in a timely manner?  I guess it will mean different things to different people and will depend a great deal on the circumstances. For Southern Rail, all they need to do is to get me home within 5 minutes of the scheduled arrival and to be able to sit down. If I am calling my bank, I want someone to answer the phone in a timely manner and not get redirected over and over again. How about not sharing personal data? I recently purchased a new domain name from a very well known hosting company based out of Germany. Within a few hours of registering the domain with them I started to get unsolicited emails and phone calls from people around the globe offering website design and SEO services. Several weeks later I am still getting these calls to my mobile that isn’t published anywhere else.  I am now looking to take my business elsewhere. An example of how not to treat your customers, which inevitably ends up losing you customers.

ISPs are not all created equal

I’ve recently been considering switching ISP. Traditionally I’ve stuck with one provider for long periods of time but I changed from BT to PlusNet in early 2017, not realising (at the time) that PlusNet were actually now a part of BT. The performance of my fibre line has been consistent, both upstream and down, with BT and PlusNet and Sky but the main issues I’ve had are that they treat me like I’m a adolescent, technically challenged fool. Whilst I don’t profess to be a expert in all areas, I have spent 20 years working for multi-national ISVs and have held roles from IT Admin through to senior IT management. Now maybe, just maybe, I’ve found a different ISP. In the last week I’ve been in contact with Andrews & Arnold. Right from the word go, I’ve found them to be different. Just looking at their website, free from flashy offers and gimmicks, you get the feeling that they are “serious about the internet”. They offer chat via an IRC channel and provide RSS feeds, their fault tracking is live for everyone to view, their boss, the enigmatic RevK is a prolific twitter contributor. Curious at their different approach, I contacted them […]

Port Forwarding

So what is port forwarding? and why do people need it? Port forwarding in it’s basic sense, allows external computers to access specific devices on your local network. For me, I wanted to host a game server on a computer inside my home network instead of paying an external company a monthly fee. What happens is your internet router, that supplies your home internet connection, becomes your external interface to the web. You can configure your router to re-route the web traffic to your local game server. Each router has a total of 65535 ports that could potentially be used and which one you need to forward depends on the game itself. The basic process is you log in to your router using the connection information supplied on the router itself, add the port number, specify the port type (UDP or TCP) and then tell it which computer on your network to send the traffic to by its IP address. You can find out more detailed information on this at https// including specific information on certain games.


Welcome to my blog. I’ve decided to finally write blog after years of avoiding it. I could never quite seem to find something worth saying. I post on Facebook for friends and family related stuff, I use Twitter to follow people that interest me, so why write a blog? Well as a geek at heart, I am forever searching for ways to do things I’ve not done before, so I thought I’d start to keep a record of such things for my own interest, as much as anything else. If people searching for stuff on line land here and find it useful, that is a bonus!