CCNA 3 - Switching and Wireless

This week was marked with the start of the third CCNA module that is dedicated to learn all about switch devices and wireless technology.

And just like in other modules, we began the week learning things on a very fast pace.

I've got to admit that two monts after the last module I barely remembered any of IOS command line functioning. Can this be a sign of old age?

Well... was a bit rusted but quickly refreshed the memory with the required skill level necessary to program the CISCO machines from command line just like before.

It also helps to write all these commands down on plain paper, at least this way I can have a quick cheat sheet to look whenever things fail to remember quickly.

Of course that practice leads to perfection and the simple fact of not working directly with CISCO equipment also promotes the progressive degradation of my knowledge on this networking field as time passes.

Nevertheless, it's so intellectually stimulating to enjoy live classes about some IT technology that I can really say that I'm happy to use my free time to learn something new.


This third module is also very promising, we have a WIFI based LAN that has a considerable dimension on my workplace and I never had any formal education on this field.

One of the interesting points is the study of the possible security holes that might be exploited and respective counter-measures to protect the network from intrusions.

So far I can't complain, already got a lot of new ideas to put in practice next week.

Things are really looking good and I'm really glad to be studying again.


Barack Obama is a friend of mine.

Some months ago, I joined a social network called "Hi5".

To those not familiar with the site, it's a network where you write your own profile, add some photos and then invite all your friends to join.

It might seem absurd to so do since it's always better to talk with your friends directly rather than using a computer, but on my case, I find it an amazing tool to know how the people who I no longer see so often are doing.

For example, my two younger brothers are very active hi5 users and they constantly update their profile with their latest activities so it's fun for me to see how things are turning out for them - it's been over a year since I last saw them in mainland Europe and this helps to shorten the distance and time that passed between visits.

You can have some fun looking at my Hi5 profile -


But back on context of this blog post..

When clicking around to see the friends of my friends, I saw someone called "Barack Obama", just for the fun of it I've clicked on the "Add friend" button and invited this person to join my group of friends.

Well.. it turns out that it was indeed the official profile for Mr. Barack Obama and he did accepted the invitation to become a friend of mine.

When it comes to public figures I always suppose that someone else has the task of maintaining the profile updated and not the person himself, but imagine my surprise knowing that Obama makes it a personal point on doing these things all by himself - isn't that something?


The world is changing with no doubt.


New tortoise, new nightmare?

New tortoise, new nightmare?

I've just downloaded and installed the latest version of tortoise CVS, the best tool ever made for team work development on a project.

At least, the "best tool ever" tag seemed to fit like a glove and while visiting the download page I decided to give a shot to the latest version.

I liked the new look, updated graphics, better installed but after all this glam came the part to actually do some work and check out a repository.

One of the things that I like the most about tortoise and to which there is still no linux equivalent, is the ease of use. A user should only need to right-click on the folder where the repository is meant to be created and then choose "checkout".

If it's the first time that the repository is used then it would be expected to see a small dialog box asking the username, password and SVN server location.


At least all seemed fine during the install but when I right clicked at the folder that I wanted to work with, I'm blessed with no options at all.

Just a single menu filled with all sort of possible settings that suddenly made tortoise too tortorous to work with..

Took me 30 minutes of attempts to see if my settings were added correctly, to see if the server was online, if there was any sort of guide to explain how to setup the new version - but nothing.


Great, was already feeling a bit tired so I moved back to the download page, grabbed the older version 1.5.6 - installed and suddenly things worked just as good before.

What nightmare, glad I'm still using the older version. Don't know how new users will welcome this confusion.


My family went back "home"

Well.. for the next three months I'll be all alone at home in Azores.

My wife and son went this morning back to mainland Portugal to spend some time with the rest of family.

It's freezing cold in Europe while around here we still walk around in tshirts during the daytime so this got me a bit worried about her travel and mostly because of the tender age of our kid.

It has been over a year since I last went to mainland visit my side of the family and I sure do miss them a lot, living on an island surely has it's perks but to be honest, I'm already missing too much to see them and this distance doesn't make me very happy at all.

Can't really complain, within a few weeks I'll be traveling back home as well to see if I pass the Valentine's day with my wife and perhaps say "hi" to the rest of the folks back home, it's been so long that I parted that everytime I return, still think on things as I'd left them.

But people change, get older, get different. Sometimes I think that time itself doesn't hold much value where I live since few things are noticeably different with the exception of year count or maybe this is a side effect of isolation when you live on a small town where every face is familiar in a way or another - can't really tell the difference.


At least time to get my online life updated won't be missing. I'm already getting my hands onto some projects that got delayed a while back and will try to speed things back to the expect development speed.

WinBuilder is my biggest priority in terms of development. Boot Land's redesign has nearly concluded most of the initially established specifications and I'll probably join Peter's effort to bring some stability in the world of winbuilder versions that caused so much confusion in the last few months to users everywhere.


Hasn't passed a day and I already miss the noise my wife and son did around the house, guess that the silence can become a bit daunting at first. Oh well, I'm counting the days to soon see them again!!


To WinBuider or not


I've replied to a comment made by SteelTrepid - developer of the UBCD4win project, related to a previous comment on my opinion about bartPE. (forum discussion here).

The discussion itself is a sure divider of people's feelings.

From one stand point we have ChinaDragon that is overwhelmed by the fact of something has been posted on the news section of Bart's PE Builder site for the first time in two years.

And from another stand point there's my opinion that it's too little and too late.


Do we really deserve to live in a world where only BartPE is recognized as a boot disk project?

It seems that everything started and stopped with bartPE and that's something revolting to me.

Prior to bartPE was already possible to create these boot disks derived from Windows XP source files. These built procedures and instructions were even literally copied over from the restricted Windows PE 1.x at the time.

Bart was smart to make a tool to automate the process.

This provoqued a Cease & Desist action letter from MS to the author of this tool and so, instead of creating a new and original build method, it was incorporated inside the binary file and hidden from the public eyes.

At runtime, bartPE 2.x still works pretty much like the initial (and forbidden) version did.

This is an hack, an old trick, something that is not clean nor efficient in size wise terms.

With winbuilder projects such as nativeEx, LiveXP and related. The construction method is open to the public. Everyone can see exactly what is being called and how it is being done.

Over the top of transparency comes the chance of actually decising to only add the files that you know that will be necessary and do it using your own language settings, no more people being forced to use only english versions of their foldernames for everything.


This is a freaking genius work that is growing by itself at each new day with the script contributions of new members from all around the globe.

Not even the MS guys ever expected that explorer would run on a system sized below 30Mb and still boot faster than a lightning from a CD-ROM media.

So many people worked out these incredibly talented solutions and still so many in the public eye only know bart or hiren's boot CD and nothing more.

This can't possible be what is going on at the masses, please reboot me from this nightmare.