Tips Root And Install Cyanogen OS 13 On OnePlus One

Just to keep track of this on my blog: a great tutorial to install a new image on my OnePlus One and root it…

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Tips Add AC3 support within MX Player on Samsung Galaxy S7 

By default, MX player doesn’t support ac3 audio due to licensing issue. Using a custom codec solves this.

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Don’t download  and install the «NEON Codec 1.8.9 for Android 6+» usually suggested for MX player in order to support AC3 (available on Google play as «MX Player Codec for ARMv7 NEON CPUs»).

Instead, download the custom codec for arm v7 neon 1.8.6 (available here). Unzip that file, open MX Player, click on the menu …, go to  settings > decoder. Scroll down to the very bottom and select Custom Codec.  There, pick the file libffmpeg.mx.so.neon.1.8.6 you have just unzipped.

MX Player will next restart. You can now try a video with ac3 codec. Ex.: download a sample from here.

Et voilà.

Tips Local DNS not working anymore due to AVAST

Since a few week, I have issues when trying to access devices or services in my LAN via domain names defined within my local DNS Server. The problem was due to AVAST’s “Secure DNS” feature (recently enabled unmindfully).

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I have defined a Master Zone for BeatificaBytes.be in my DNS Server (hosted on my Synology). It’s pointing on my NAS itself. Doing so, I can access my blog from my LAN just as from Internet. Without that Master Zone, a ping on BeatificaBytes.be would return the internet IP of my modem. And I can’t use that IP to access my NAS (hosting my blog) from within my LAN.

In that Master Zone, I have defined a A record for www, to forward www.BeatificaBytes.be onto the local IP of my blog.

I have also a few other Master Zones defined to access various devices…

Since a few weeks, I was not able to ping any devices anymore and my blog was only accessible on BeatificaBytes.be but not anymore on www.BeatificaBytes.be.

I spent hours to reconfigure my DNS Server, testing all the various settings, without success. I have never executed so many ipconfig /flushdns, ipconfig /release, ipconfig /renew, ipconfig /all, ping www.BeatificaBytes.be and nslookup www.BeatificaBytes.be :D

I have finally figured out that the problem was with AVAST. It has a feature named “Secure DNS” which protects yourself against “DNS hijacking”. DNS hijacking redirects you from the site you want to visit, to one that looks just like it. Secure DNS ensures the site you’re visiting is real.

So, Avast was preventing me to access my blog on an IP which was not the one of my real “domain name” registered on Internet. But as I only defined the fully qualified “www.BeatificaBytes.be” within my Internet Provider’s DNS Settings, I was still able to access my blog locally on “BeatificaBytes.be” (This has been a lot disturbing my investigation).

It’s really the first time since 1996 that I curse Avast !

Tips WordPress really slow when accessed on LAN via its Domain Name

Since a few weeks, WordPress is really slow when I access it from my LAN with it’s domain name https://beatificabytes.be

The problem was with the name resolution on my PC.

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My blog is hosted on my NAS, that I usually accessed via its netbios name or via its local IP address. But to make it easier for me, I also defined a domain ‘beatificabytes.be’ on my NAS’ DNS Server, with a A Records for www, pointing on the IP of the NAS.

So, I can access my blog locally with either the domain name ‘beatificabytes.be’ (if I am lazy) or with the fully qualified name ‘www.beatificabytes.be’.

The problem is that the actual URL of my blog, defined in WordPress’ settings, is ‘www.beatificabytes.be’. So, many pages of the blog are referencing scripts and images hosted on on that address ‘www.beatificabytes.be’.

And, a few weeks ago, for some unclear reason, my PC started to fail to access my NAS via the url ‘www.beatificabytes.be’. I was only able to access it with its netbios name, its IP or the domain name ‘beatificabytes.be’ (without www).

The reason was an issue with the name resolution on my PC (I thought it was an issue with the “DNS” Server but it was actually due to Avast’s feature ‘Secure DNS’).

Therefore, each page trying to load resources from www.beatificabytes.be was getting timeouts, making the rendering very slow (without any visual notification!)…

I did fix the name resolution issue and I can now access again my blog ‘full speed’.

Conclusion, open the Debug window of your browser to look at possible network or script errors ;)

Hardwares Chaos reincarnation

Although I did upgrade some parts of my old PC Chaos, built end of December 2012, it’s suffering of his age. I have various issues with the power management, the USB ports, the sound, … So, I have decided to migrate its OS to a new hardware using Acronis Universal Restore.

[Edit 1/1/2020] Minor update

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The new hardware includes:

  • 1 x motherboard MSI Z270 Gaming Pro Carbon (to replace the previous one which burned: MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon) LGA 1151
    • CPU:  Intel socket LGA 1151 (for Core i7)
    • Chipset: Intel Z270
    • RAM : 4 x DDR4-3866+ (max 64GB) – Dual Channel Architecture
    • Storage: 6 x SATA 6Gb/s ports, 2 x M.2 ports
    • Slots: 3 x PCIe x16 (Support SLI and CrossFire), 3 x PCIe x1
    • LAN: 1 x Intel I219-V Gigabit
    • Audio: Realtek ALC1220 Codec, 7.1 Channel HD with S/PDIF output
    • Video:
      • HDMI (4096×2160@30Hz, 4096×2160@24Hz, 2560×1600@60Hz)
      • DVI (1920×1200@60Hz)
      • Support CrossFire and SLI
    • USB:
      • ASMedia® ASM2142 Chipset
        • 2 x Rear USB 3.1 Gen2 (SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps) – 1 x Type-C, 1 x Type-A
      • Intel® Z170 Chipset
        • 2 x Rear USB 3.1 Gen1 (SuperSpeed USB) ports
        • 4 x connectors USB 3.1 Gen1 (SuperSpeed USB) ports
        • 4 x back USB 2.0 (High-speed USB) ports
        • 4 x connectors USB 2.0 (High-speed USB) ports
  • 1 x cpu Intel Core i7-6700K (Skylake) at 4.4GHz.
  • 1x Air Cooler Noctua NH-D15.
  • 2 x 16GB Ram DDR4 at 1.20GHz (16-18-18-38-2N at 3200MHz) Gskill RipjawsV in Dual Channel mode (F4-3200C16D-32GVK).
  • 1 x SSD Samsung 850 PRO 256GB (MZ-7KE256BW).
  • 1 x case Be Quiet! Silent Base 800 High End ATX Tower PC (BG002).
    • Performing slightly better than the Be Quiet! Dark Rock Pro3 (BK019) according to various reviews, but more expensive.
  • 1 x PSU Corsair HX850i (850W) 80 Plus Platinum
    • A bit less performing than the Be Quiet! Dark Power Pro 11, but cheaper, guarantee twice longer (10 years), with manual and temperature-controlled fans, Semi-passive, consuming 0.00 W when Off and coming with Flat cables.
    • The choice between this one and the Corsair RM850i was very hard has the second one is nearly as efficient (although it’s only Gold) but ~18% cheaper. The HX comes however with 2 more connectors…
    • Don’t do the same mistake as I did. Air is suck into the PSU. Mount the PSU with the fan sucking the air from the bottom of the tower (if possible) instead of sucking air from inside the tower.
  • 2 x PCI Carte with 5 external USB 3.0 Ports and 1 internal USB 3.0 connector Inateck 
  • 2 x Icy Dock Trayless 3.5” SATA HDD Mobile Rack for 5.25 bay TurboSwap MB171SP-B with a fan cooler
    • To use SSD into those Racks, I use an Icy Dock MB982SP-1S 2.5” to 3.5” Full Metal SATA HDD and SSD Converter.

Power Supply Calculator (from MSI): https://us.msi.com/power-supply-calculator

BeQuiet! Silent Base 800

BeQuiet! Silent Base 800

MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon

MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon

MSI Z270 Gaming Pro Carbon

MSI Z270 Gaming Pro Carbon

Noctua NH-D15

Noctua NH-D15

G Skill Ripjaws V

G Skill Ripjaws V

USB Switch Aten US424

USB Switch Aten US424

Card Reader Kingston FCR-HS4

Card Reader Kingston FCR-HS4

Logitech Wireless Gamepad F710

Logitech Wireless Gamepad F710

Corsair Headset Vengeance 2100

Corsair Headset Vengeance 2100

Rapoo Wireless Keyboard and Mouse

Rapoo Wireless Keyboard and Mouse

HTC Vive Pro

HTC Vive Pro

Tips Boot Windows 10 into Safe Mode when it does not start anymore and F8 is not enabled

Many tutorials explain how to reboot in Safe Mode. But they usually need you to already be in a Windows session for that. What if Windows doesn’t start well anymore and the usual F8 doesn’t work? Well, you can enable the classic Boot Menu via the Command Prompt of a Recovery Drive.

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In my case, the Graphic Cards’ drivers were corrupted. So Windows was actually still booting but I couldn’t do anything as not having access to the UI. I had to restart in safe mode to remove those drivers and reinstall them. But without a UI, impossible to change Windows’s Startup Options…

Typing F8 during Windows boot didn’t gave me access to the Boot Menu as, since Windows 8, the boot so fast that there is no way to interrupt it anymore – except if you have enabled F8 explicitly, sacrificing a couple of seconds during startup. This can be done by opening an elevated Command Prompt and executing:

  • bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy

To undo this reopen the elevated Command Prompt and type:

  • bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy standard

If F8 is not enabled, you can force Windows to present you the Boot Menu using a Recovery Drive (or USB Key):

  • If you don’t have a Recovery drive yet,
    • Go to another Windows 10 PC (a x64 if your PC is a X64, or x86 otherwise)
    • Search for “Recovery Drive” in the Windows Start Menu/Screen
    • And Select “Create a Recovery Drive” (No need to back up system files to the recovery drive).
  • Boot your other PC on that Key (depending on you BIOS, you can use F8, F12, … to access to Device Boot Menu. See a list here).
  • Select your Keyboard and enter the “Troubleshoot” Menu.
  • Enter next the “Advanced Options” Menu.
    • Notice that with this Windows Recovery Drive, you won’t have the “Startup Settings” menu in the “Advanced Options”. This one is only available when you reboot your PC with the “Advanced Startup” Options or when Windows failed to boot twice and enter the Repair mode automatically (NB.: You can obviously use that trick to access the Startup Settings and boot is Safe Mode: boot the PC and switch it off when Windows is starting).
Recovery Advanced Options

Recovery Advanced Options with Startup Settings

  • So, no choice here but enter the “Command Prompt” menu
  • In there, type: bcdedit /set {bootmgr} displaybootmenu yes
  • Type next: exit
  • And shutdown completely before rebooting your PC.
  • You should now be prompted to select your OS. Press F8 there to access other Boot options ;)

Et voilà.

Once everything is back to normal with your Windows, run a command Prompt as Admin and disable the Boot Menu by typing:

  • bcdedit /set {bootmgr} displaybootmenu no

Tips Windows 10 Search can’t find any applications

I am a big fan of Windows’ search feature since Windows 7. So, I was really frustrated when searching stopped to work this morning on my Windows 10. Fortunately, I have been able to fix it easily by deleting a key of the registry.

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  1. Open a Run prompt by typing Win + R
  2. Execute “Regedit” via that run Prompt
  3. Open the Task Manager by typing Ctrl + Shift + Esc
  4. In the Task Manager, open the tab “Details”
  5. Kill all “Explorer.exe”
  6. In “Regedit”, locate and delete the entry: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\FolderTypes\{ef87b4cb-f2ce-4785-8658-4ca6c63e38c6}\TopViews\{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000}
  7. In the Task Manager, open the menu File > Run new task, and type “Explorer”

Et voilà, the Search feature should now work fine again.

Tips How to connect a bluetooth headset with a samsung tv UE48H6500

Yes, this is possible. But you have to enable the support for «Bluetooth headphones» via a hidden menu.

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To access the samsung hidden menu:
– Switch off the tv with your remote
– Press the key «Info»
– Press the key «Menu»
– Press the key «Mute»
– Switch on the tv and wait for a few seconds

The hidden menu is now appearing on the screen. With the keys «up» and «down» you navigate between entries (submenus or settings). With the key «ok» (Enter) you enter a selected submenu or edit a setting. With the key «Return» you exit the submenu or the edit mode. With the keys «Left» and «Right» you change the value of a setting in edit mode.

To enable the support for «Bluetooth headphones»:
– select the entry «Option»
– select the entry «MRT option»
– select the setting «BT support»
– change the value of that setting to set: ON
– exit that setting
– exit the submenu
– select now the entry «Engineer Option»
– select the setting «BT_AUDIO_ON_OFF»
– change the value of that setting to set: ON

And now switch off the tv. Voilà. The feature should be enabled. To access it, switch on the tv and press the key Menu. Then go to > Sound > Speaker Settings > Bluetooth headphones. From there you can search for Bluetooth devices and pair them.

Later, to reconnect a Bluetooth which is already paired, use the key «tools» and in «Speaker Select», pick «Bluetooth headset». If it does not connect immediately, switch off and on your headphone and retry changing the “Speaker Select”. Notice that you must do this before starting any application like Plex or Netflix in the SmartHub.

Tips Find Drivers for an “unknown device”

The most difficult drivers to find are those for “unknown devices”. Fortunately, there is a web site to search for those based on the device’s “Hardware ID”.

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Open the properties of the unknown device and copy its Hardware ID. Next search for that ID on https://devid.drp.su/?dev=

Tips Boot from USB Key on a Toshiba Satellite to reinstall Windows

It can be tricky… And here is the trick: disable the Secure Boot and use CSM Boot mode instead of UEFI. Once you don’t need to boot from the key anymore, reset those settings.

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Ccomplete details are available here: https://aps2.toshiba-tro.de/kb0/TSB2B03F30002R01.htmNotice also: while the “TOSHIBA” logo appears once the laptop powerd on,

  • Press [F2] key to enter the BIOS Setup Menu.
  • Press [F12] key to access the boot menu.

I did need that to reinstall Windows 7 x64 SP1 on a old Toshiba as the CD/DVD reader is broken.

I did create the bootable USB Key using Rufus 2.9: https://rufus.akeo.ie/

Within Rufus, I did use a “MBR Partition Scheme for Bios or UEFI”.

Finally, I had issue to install Windows with the key connected on the USB 3.0 port (the one which is blue) : “A required CD/DVD driver is missing”. I did solve that issue plugging the key on a USB 2.0 port and restarting the PC.