Archive for the ‘Windows’ Category

Must have software on freshly installed windows – Essential Software after fresh Windows install

Friday, March 18th, 2016

Install-update-multiple-programs-applications-at-once-using-ninite

If you're into IT industry even if you don't like installing frequently Windows or you're completely Linux / BSD user, you will certainly have a lot of friends which will want help from you to re-install or fix their Windows 7 / 8 / 10 OS. At least this is the case with me every year, I'm kinda of obliged to install fresh windowses on new bought friends or relatives notebooks / desktop PCs.

Of course according to for whom the new Windows OS installed the preferrences of necessery software varies, however more or less there is sort of standard list of Windows Software which is used daily by most of Avarage Computer user, such as:
 

Not to forget a good candidate from the list to install on new fresh windows Installation candidates are:

  • Winrar
  • PeaZIP
  • WinZip
  • GreenShot (to be able to easily screenshot stuff and save pictures locally and to the cloud)
  • AnyDesk (non free but very functional alternative to TeamViewer) to be able to remotely access remote PC
  • TightVNC
  • ITunes / Spotify (for people who have also iPhone smart phone)
  • DropBox or pCloud (to have some extra cloud free space)
  • FBReader (for those reading a lot of books in different formats)
  • Rufus – Rufus is an efficient and lightweight tool to create bootable USB drives. It helps you to create BIOS or UEFI bootable devices. It helps you to create Windows TO Go drives. It provides support for various disk, format, and partition.
  • Recuva is a data recovery software for Windows 10 (non free)
  • EaseUS (for specific backup / restore data purposes but unfortunately (non free)
  • For designers
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • f.lux –  to control brightness of screen and potentially Save your eyes
  • ImDisk virtual Disk Driver
  • KeePass / PasswordSafe – to Securely store your passwords
  • Putty / MobaXterm / SecureCRT / mPutty (for system administrators and programmers that has to deal with Linux / UNIX)

I tend to install on New Windows installs and thus I have more or less systematized the process.

I try to usually stick to free software where possible for each of the above categories as a Free Software enthusiast and luckily nowadays there is a lot of non-priprietary or at least free as in beer software available out there.

For Windows sysadmins or College and other public institutions networks including multiple of Windows Computers which are not inside a domain and also for people in computer repair shops where daily dozens of windows pre-installs or a set of software Automatic updates are  necessery make sure to take a look at Ninite

ninite-automate-windows-program-deploy-and-update-on-new-windows-os-openoffice-screenshot

As official website introduces Ninite:

Ninite – Install and Update All Your Programs at Once

Of course as Ninite is used by organizations as NASA, Harvard Medical School etc. it is likely the tool might reports your installed list of Windows software and various other Win PC statistical data to Ninite developers and most likely NSA, but this probably doesn't much matter as this is probably by the moment you choose to have installed a Windows OS on your PC.

ninite-choises-to-build-an-install-package-with-useful-essential-windows-software-screenshot
 

For Windows System Administrators managing small and middle sized network PCs that are not inside a Domain Controller, Ninite could definitely save hours and at cases even days of boring install and maintainance work. HP Enterprise or HP Inc. Employees or ex-employees would definitely love Ninite, because what Ninite does is pretty much like the well known HP Internal Tool PC COE.

Ninite could also prepare an installer containing multiple applications based on the choice on Ninite's website, so that's also a great thing especially if you need to deploy a different type of Users PCs (Scientific / Gamers / Working etc.)

Perhaps there are also other useful things to install on a new fresh Windows installations, if you're using something I'm missing let me know in comments.

Create Bootable Windows installer USB from a MAC PC, MacBook host or Linux Desktop computer

Thursday, February 8th, 2024

Creating Windows bootable installer with Windows Media Creation tool is easy, but sometimes if you're a geek like me you don't have a Windows personal PC at home and your Work PC is so paranoidly restricted by its administrator through paranoid Domain Controller Policies, that you can only copy from a USB drive towards the Win PC but you cannot write to the USB. 

1. Preparing Linux installer USB via Mac's Boot Camp Assistant

If you're lucky you might have a MAC Book Air or some kind of other mac PC, if that is the case you can burn the Windows Installer iso, with the Native Mac tool called BootCamp Assistant, by simply downloading the Win Boot ISO, launching the app and burning it:

Finder > Applications > Utilities and open Boot Camp Assistant.

create-windows-10-bootable-installer-usb-mac-screenshot.png

2. Preparing Bootable Windows installer on Linux host machine

On DEBIAN / UBUNTU and other Deb based Linuxes

# apt install gddrescue 

On CENTOS / FEDORA :

# dnf install ddrescue

To install the Windows Image to the right USB drive, first find it out with fdisk and list it:

# fdisk -l
 

Disk /dev/sdb: 14.41 GiB, 15472047104 bytes, 30218842 sectors
Disk model: DataTraveler 3.0
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: dos
Disk identifier: 0xc23dc587

Device     Boot    Start      End  Sectors  Size Id Type
/dev/sdb1           8192 30216793 30208602 14.4G  7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sdb2       30216794 30218841     2048    1M  e W95 FAT16 (LBA)

Then Use ddrescue to create the bootable MS windows Installer USB disk.

# ddrescue windows10.iso /dev/sd1 –force -D

3. Using GUI Linux tool WoeUSB-ng to prepare Microsoft Windows start up USB drive

If you're a lazy Linux user and you plan to prepare up to date Windows image files regularly, perhaps the WoeUSB-ng Graphical tool will suit you better, to use it you will have to install a bunch of python libraries.
 

On Ubuntu Linux:

# apt install git p7zip-full python3-pip python3-wxgtk4.0 grub2-common grub-pc-bin
# pip3 install WoeUSB-ng

On Fedora Linux:

dnf install git p7zip p7zip-plugins python3-pip python3-wxpython4
# sudo pip3 install WoeUSB-ng

Launch the WoeUSB-ng program :

 

$ python3 /usr/local/bin/woeusbgui

 

Download, the latest Version of Windows Installer .ISO IMAGE file, plug in your USB flash disk and let the program burn the ISO and create the GRUB boot loader, that will make WIndows installer bootable on your PC.

WoeUSB-ng-python-burn-windows-installer.-tool-screenshot

With WoeUSB-ng you have to be patient, it will take some time to prepare and copy the Windows installer content and will take about 15 to 20 minutes from my experience to finalize the GRUB records required, that will make the new burnt ISO bootable.


Then just plug it in to your Desktop PC or laptop, virtual machine, whatever where you would like to install the Windows from its latest installation Source image and Go on with doing the necessery evil to have Microsoft Spy on you permanently.

P.S. I just learned, from colleagues from Kvant Serviz (a famous hardware second hand, shop and repair shop here in Bulgaria, that nowadays Windows has evolved to the points, they can and they actually do overwrite the PC BIOS / UEFI as part of updates without any asking the end user !!!
At first I disbelived that, but after a short investigation online it turned out this is true, 
there are discussions online from people complaining, that WIndows updates has ovewritten their current BIOS settings and people complaining BIOS versions are ovewritten.

Enjoy your new personal Spy OS ! 🙂

Improve MobaXterm Best Windows terminal client with some additional settings tune ups / Install extra Linux Cygwin tools on MobaXterm and various post install configuration goodies

Friday, January 20th, 2023

mobaxterm-logo_400x400-terminal-client-tune-up-howto-for-a-new-install

Earlier I've written a an article MobaXTerm: A good gnome-terminal like tabbed SSH client for Windows / Windows Putty Tabs Alternative in which I've introduced the best in my opinion SSH / Telnet / VNC / RDP / Xserver in one Terminal client emulator for Windows operating systems.

The client has been around for quite some time and it has been improving rapidly over the last 10 years, where it now more looks like a separate Operating System than a single terminal client. It's size is quite compact as well and my opinion and every self respectiving developer, system administrator, IT geek or a hacker would definitely
use the mobaxterm at home or at work place on a daily. I guess some of my readers, who have already migrated SuperPutty / SecureCRT or Putty / XMing or whatever kind of exotic Remote SSH Console terminal is used could validate this 🙂

Therefore as I've set up Mobaxterm on a multiple computers all around, I've found it useful to write a small article with some post-install hints (tune ups) one can do immediately once he has installed the Desktop or Portable Apps version of mobaxterm on desktop PC / notebook.
 

1. Set up your bashrc server / command aliases

Lets say you need to setup some rules for connectivity via a socks proxy to dig holes over a harsh company firewalls or add
custom options to every ssh client attempt to remote server, or simply alias some of your servers with custom connectivity options
and so on simply open vi / vim text editor from mobaxterm local terminal and place inside your rules, for example that could be anything like:

 

alias ssh='ssh -o stricthostkeychecking=no -o passwordauthentication=yes -o PreferredAuthentications=password  -v'
alias sftp='sftp -o stricthostkeychecking=no -o passwordauthentication=yes -o PreferredAuthentications=password'

alias work-server='ssh UserName@work-server -v -o passwordauthentication=yes -o PreferredAuthentications=password'

alias proxy='ssh -D 3128 UserName@proxyIP-host1 -o ConnectTimeout=80'
alias proxy1='ssh -D 3128 UserName@proxy-host2 -p 443 -o ConnectTimeout=60'
alias proxy3='ssh -D 3128 Username@proxy-host3 -p 443 -o ConnectTimeout=60'

Simply open the terminal and setup whatever you require
export ftp_proxy="http://proxy-host:8080"
export https_proxy="https://proxy-host:8080"
export http_proxy="http://proxy-host:8080"
export HTTP_PROXY="http://proxy-host:8080"
export HTTPS_PROXY="http://proxy-host:8080"

 

2. Set mobaxterm presistent directory / persistent root directory and default text editor

Make sure you have properly defined at least Persistent directory / Persistent directory if you want to keep the files under your /home/mobaxterm and root directory be able to save your data from local mobaxterm terminal work you have done.

To do so o to Configuration -> General

MobaXterm-persistent-home-directory
 

3. Change default settings for Opening / Closing Terminal tabs just like in gnome-terminal

MobaXterm is really awesome as the developer, followed pretty much the logic of some common GNU / Linux Terminal clients like Gnome-Terminal and KDE's default Konsole terminal.

One of the first things to do once Mobaxterm is installed on the PC is to set up nice key binds as default onces might be heard to learn at the beginning or you might have already the habit to use the certain set of key combinations on your Linux desktop:

Common once are:

1. Open tab / Close tab common once I bind to are (CTRL + T / CTRL + W)
2. Previous tab move / Next tab move keys common one I use are (ALT + LEFT / ALT + RIGHT)
3. Find in terminal (CTRL + F)

rebind-mobaxterm-standard-keys
 

4. Make MobaXterm to automatically open a terminal to not Start local terminal every time

By default mobaxterm it is really annoying cause every time you run it after system reboot you have to select
Start local terminal
Once you run the terminal you get this prompt and you have to press on Start local terminal

mobaxterm-start-local-terminal


How to make Mobaxterm automatically open local Terminal Tab on every boot?
 

To fix this so every time a local terminal is spawn on MobaXterm you have get to:
 

Settings -> Configuration -> Misc


Open the Following tab at startup by default it will be

<Home (Pinned)>

Change it to:

<Terminal>

mobaxterm-open-the-followintab-tab-in-startup

That's it on next login your Local Terminal with /bin/bash.exe will auto load !
 

[hipo.WINDOWS-PC] ➤ env|grep -i SHELL
SHELL=/bin/bash.exe
PATH=/bin:/drives/c/Users/hipo/DOCUME~1
/MobaXterm/slash/bin:/drives/c/Windows:/drives/c/Windows/system32:/drives/c/Windows/system32:/drives/c/Windows:/drives/c/Windows/System32/Wbem:
/drives/c/Windows/System32/WindowsPowerShell/v1.0:/drives/c/Windows/sysnative
PSModulePath=C:\Windows\system32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\Modules\
CMDPATH=C:\Windows\system32;C:\Windows;C:\Windows\System32\Wbem;
C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\;C:\Windows\sysnative\;
C:\Users\hipo\DOCUME~1\MobaXterm\slash\bin
WINPATH=C:\Windows\system32;C:\Windows;C:\Windows\System32\Wbem;C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\;C:\Windows\sysnative\


5. Make menu buttons to appear smaller


Go to menu and select
View -> (Small Buttons)

mobaxterm-select-small-buttons-screenshot

6. Disable auto start of XServer to prevent a port listener on the machine on TCP port

By default mobaxterm opens XServer listener, so you can immediately connect from a remote SSH servers missing Xserver and install software requiring an XServer, for example software such as Oracle Database or some MiddleWare WebLogig or IBM's Web Sphere. This is useful but if you want to have a good security only allow this server on a purpose. Otherwise the XServer will run in parallel with rest of your Moba and just load up your PC and eat up some RAM memory. To disable it go to:

mobaxterm-x11-automatically-start-X-server-disable-stop-at-startup

7. Change the mobaxterm Default theme to Dark

This is optional I like to set the Theme to Dark, also as a Theme for Windows as well as for MobaxTerm, the aim of that is simply to not put extra stress on my eye sight. Being on the PC around 8 to 10 hours and spending some 6 to 8 hours on console work is enough. If you want to do as well.

mobaxterm-change-default-theme-to-dark-theme

8. Install additional set of common Linux tools to mobaxterm to use on Windows
 

Tools such as:

1. Midnight Commander (mc)
2. Wget
3. Curl
4. Vim
5. Screen
6. Rsync
7. Perl
8. W3m
9. dosunix
10. unix2dos
11. gnupg
12. diffutils
13. mysql
14. mpg123
15. whois


If you want to have a set of packages pre-installed that are including above as well as the rest of mine, here is a dump of my installed mobapt manager packages:

For more simply use the experimental Mobaxterm  Graphical Package installer
 

[hipo.WINDOWS-PC] ➤  for i in $(cat Downloads/installed-packages-mobaxterm.txt ); do apt-cyg install $i; done
 

Found package GeoIP-database

Installing GeoIP-database
Downloading GeoIP-database-20180505-1.tar.xz…
Unpacking GeoIP-database-20180505-1.tar.xz…


Running postinstall scripts
Package GeoIP-database installed.

Rebasing new libraries

Found package adwaita-icon-theme

Installing adwaita-icon-theme
Downloading adwaita-icon-theme-3.26.1-1.tar.xz…


You will be prompted for a single Yes for the respository

MobApt Packages Manager

mobapt-pkg-manager-install-git-from-gui-mobaxterm-package-installer

Though it is said it is experimental, I have to say the MobApt Apt Manager works quite good, I never had any issues with it so far.

9. Mobaxterm.ini the settings storage file that can help you move your configurations

If you have to prepeare new MobaXterm on multiple PCs frequently perhaps it is best to just copy the Mobaxterm.ini file. 
Here is an example of my mobaxterm.ini for download.
 

10. Change terminal colors and curor type and enable blinking (customizations)


Settings -> Configuration -> Terminal -> (Default Terminal Color Settings)
 


mobaxterm-change-terminal-colors-and-blinking-cursor-setting-screenshot

11. Use very useful moba Tools
 

mobaxterm-terminal-great-useful-tools-screenshot
For sysadmins Moba has plenty of other jems such as:

  • Network Port scanner such as Nmap with GUI

  • list open network ports (GUI interface to netmap)

  • SSH tunnel tool

  • Moba Diff

  • Wake on Lan

  • Network Packet capturer (such as tcpdump)

  • List running processes (such as taskmgr in simple form)

  • List machine hardware devices (such as Windows Device manager)

 
12. Remote monitoring of opened ssh session


To enable remote monitoring for a Saved session simply use the "Remote monitoring" button on the down left corner of the terminal.

mobaxterm-remote-monitoring-of-remote-ssh-server-screenshot-button

Or to enable it for a new host, open:

1. "Saved sessions"
2. Click over "User sessions"
3. New Session -> (SSH)
4. Basic SSH Settings (Remote host) -> OK
5. Click over the new created session
6. Click on Remote monitoring for the opened session

remote-monitoring-from-mobaxterm-screenshot

13. Play some mobaxterm console games

As you might have pissed off of configuring go on and enjoy some of the great console games, some of which are also present on a normal Linux new distribution installation. 🙂

mobaxterm-list-of-games-screenshot

List of Moba Games

teamwalk-mobaxterm-console-connect-network-routers-game
TeamWalk (Use your mouse or keyboard to connect every server to the central router)

ctris-console-text-game-mobaxterm

Ctris Console tetris from Mobaxterm

solitaire-text-console-game-played-on-mobaxterm-screenshot

Text console Solitaire from Moba
 

Ninvaders-console-game-mobaxterm

Here is NinVaders (Text Version of Space Invaders Arcade Classic)
 

Enjoy ! 🙂

How to disable Windows pagefile.sys and hiberfil.sys to temporary or permamently save disk space if space is critically low

Monday, March 28th, 2022

howto-pagefile-hiberfil.sys-remove-reduce-increase-increase-size-windows-logo

Sometimes you have to work with Windows 7 / 8 / 10 PCs  etc. that has a very small partition C:\
drive or othertimes due to whatever the disk got filled up with time and has only few megabytes left
and this totally broke up the windows performance as Windows OS becomes terribly sluggish and even
simple things as opening Internet Browser (Chrome / Firefox / Opera ) or Windows Explorer stones the PC performance.

You might of course try to use something like Spacesniffer tool (a great tool to find lost data space on PC s short description on it is found in my previous article how to
delete temporary Internet Files and Folders to to speed up and free disk space
 ) or use CCleaner to clean up a bit the pc.
Sometimes this is not enough though or it is not possible to do at all the main
partition disk C:\ is anyhow too much low (only 30-50MB are available on HDD) or the Physical or Virtual Machine containing the OS is filled with important data
and you couldn't risk to remove anything including Internet Temporary files, browsing cookies … whatever.

Lets say you are the fate chosen guy as sysadmin to face this uneasy situation and have no easy
way to add disk space from another present free space partition or could not add a new SATA hard drive
SSD drive, what should you do?
 

The solution wipe off pagefile.sys and hiberfil.sys

Usually every Windows installation has a pagefile.sys and hiberfil.sys.

  • pagefile.sys – is the default file that is used as a swap file, immediately once the machine runs out of memory. For Unix / Linux users better understanding pagefile.sys is the equivallent of Linux's swap partition. Of course as the pagefile is in a file and not in separate partition the swapping in Windows is perhaps generally worse than in Linux.
  • hiberfil.sys – is used to store data from the machine on machine Hibernation (for those who use the feature)


Pagefile.sys which depending on the configured RAM memory on the OS could takes up up to 5 – 8 GB, there hanging around doing nothing but just occupying space. Thus a temporary workaround that could free you some space even though it will degrade performance and on servers and production machines this is not a good solution on just user machines, where you temporary need to free space any other important task you can free up space
by seriously reducing the preconfigured default size of pagefile.sys (which usually is 1.5 times the active memory on the OS – hence if you have 4GB you would have a 6Gigabytes of pagefile.sys).

Other possibility especially on laptop and movable devices running Win OS is to disable hiberfil.sys, read below how this is done.


The temporary solution here is to simply free space by either reducing the pagefile.sys or completely disabling it


1. Disable pagefile.sys on Windows XP, Windows 7 / 8 / 10 / 11


The GUI interface to disable pagefile across all NT based Windows OS-es is quite similar, the only difference is newer versions of Windows has slightly more options.


1.1 Disable pagefile on Windows XP


Quickest way is to find pagefile.sys settings from GUI menus

1. Computer (My Computer) – right click mouse
2. Properties (System Preperties will appear)
3. Advanced (tab) 
4. Settings
5. Advanced (tab)
6. Change button

windows-xp-pagefile-disable-screenshot

1.2 Disable pagefile on Windows 7

 

advanced-system-settings-control-panel-system-and-security-screenshot

windows-system-properties-screenshot-properties-advanced-change-Virtual-memory-pagefile-screenshot

system-properties-performance-options
 

Once applied you'll be required to reboot the PC

How-to-turn-off-Virtual-Memory-Paging_File-in-Windows-7-restart

 

1.3 Disable Increase / Decrease pagefile.sys on Windows 10 / Win 11
 

open-system-properties-advanced-win10

win10-performance-options-menu-screenshot

configure-virtual-memory-win-10-screenshot


1.4 Make Windows clear pagefile.sys on shutdown

On home PCs it might be useful thing to clear up ( nullify) pagefile.sys on shutdown, that could save you some disk space on every reboot, until file continuously grows to its configured Maximum.

Run

regedit

Modify registry key at location

 

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management

windows-clean-up-pagefile-sys-file-on-shutdown-or-reboot-registry-editor-value-screenshot

You can apply the value also via a registry file you can get the Enable Clearpagefile at shutdown here .reg.
 

2. Manipulating pagefile.sys size and file delete from command line with wmic tool 

For scripting purposes you might want to use the wmic pagefile which can do increase / decrase or delete the file without GUI, that is very helpful if you have to admin a Windows Domain (Active Directory)
 

[hipo.WINDOWS-PC] ➤ wmic pagefile /?

PAGEFILE – Virtual memory file swapping management.

HINT: BNF for Alias usage.
(<alias> [WMIObject] | [] | [] ) [].

USAGE:

PAGEFILE ASSOC []
PAGEFILE CREATE <assign list>
PAGEFILE DELETE
PAGEFILE GET [] []
PAGEFILE LIST [] []

 

[hipo.WINDOWS-PC] ➤ wmic pagefile
AllocatedBaseSize  Caption          CurrentUsage  Description      InstallDate                Name             PeakUsage  Status  TempPageFile
4709               C:\pagefile.sys  499           C:\pagefile.sys  20200912061902.938000+180  C:\pagefile.sys  525                FALSE

 

[hipo.WINDOWS-PC] ➤ wmic pagefile list /format:list

AllocatedBaseSize=4709
CurrentUsage=499
Description=C:\pagefile.sys
InstallDate=20200912061902.938000+180
Name=C:\pagefile.sys
PeakUsage=525
Status=
TempPageFile=FALSE

wmic-pagefile-command-line-tool-for-windows-default-output-screenshot

 

  • To change the Initial Size or Maximum Size of Pagefile use:
     

➤ wmic pagefileset where name="C:\\pagefile.sys" set InitialSize=2048,MaximumSize=2048

  • To move the pagefile / change location of pagefile to less occupied disk drive partition (i.e. D:\ drive)

     

     

    Sometimes you might have multiple drives on the PC and some of them might be having multitudes of gigabytes while main drive C:\ could be fully occupied due to initial install bad drive organization, in that case a good work arount to save you space so you can work normally with the server is just to temporary or permanently move pagefile to another drive.

wmic pagefileset where name="D:\\pagefile.sys" set InitialSize=2048,MaximumSize=2048


!! CONSIDER !!! 

That if you have the option to move the pagefile.sys for best performance it is advicable to place the file inside another physical disk, preferrably a Solid State Drive one, SATA disks are too slow and reduced Input / Output disk operations will lead to degraded performance, if there is lack of memory (i.e. pagefile.sys is actively open read and wrote in).
 

  • To delete pagefile.sys 
     

➤ wmic pagefileset where name="C:\\pagefile.sys" delete

 

If for some reason you prefer to not use wmic but simple del command you can delete pagefile.sys also by:

Removing file default "Hidden" and "system" file attributes – set for security reasons as the file is a system file usually not touched by user. This will save you from "permission denied" errors:
 

➤ attrib -s -h %systemdrive%\pagefile.sys


Delete the file:
 

➤ del /a /q %systemdrive%\pagefile.sys


3. Disable hibernation on Windows 7 / 8 and Win 10 / 11

Disabling hibernation file hiberfil.sys can also free up some space, especially if the hibernation has been actively used before and the file is written with data. Of course, that is more common on notebooks.
Windows hibernation has significantly improved over time though i didn't have very pleasant experience in the past and I prefer to disable it just in case.
 

3.1 Disable Windows 7 / 8 / 10 / 11 hibernation from GUI 

Disable it through:

Control Panel -> All Control Panel Items -> Power Options -> Edit Plan Settings -> Change advanced power settings


 like shown in below screenshot:

Windqows-power-options-Advanced-settings-Allow-Hybrid-sleep-option-menu-screenshot

 

3.2 Disable Windows 7 / 8 / 10 / 11 hibernation from command line

Disable hibernation Is done in the same way through the powercfg.exe command, to disable it
if you're cut of disk space and you want to save space from it:

run as Administrator in Command Line Windows (cmd.exe)
 

powercfg.exe /hibernate off

If you later need to switch on hibernation
 

powercfg.exe /hibernate on


disable-hiberfile-windows-screenshot

3.3 Disable Windows hibernation on legacy Windows XP

On XP to disable hibernation open

1. Power Options Properties
2. Select Hibernate
3. Select Enable Hibernation to clear the checkbox and disable Hibernation mode. 
4. Select OK to apply the change.

Close the Power Options Properties box. 

enable-disable-hibernate-windows-xp-menu-screenshot

To sum it up

We have learned some basics on Windows swapping and hibernation and i've tried to give some insight on how thiese files if misconfigured could lead to degraded Win OS performance. In any case using SSD as of 2022 to store both files is a best practice for machines that has plenty of memory always try to completely disable / remove the files. It was shown how  to manage pagefile.sys and hiberfil.sys across Windows Operating Systems different versions both from GUI and via command line as well as how you can configure pagefile.sys to be cleared up on pc reboot.
 

How to Install ssh client / server on Windows 10, Windows Server 2019 and Windows Server 2022 using PowerShell commands

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2022

How-to-install-OpenSSH-Client-and-Server-on-Windows-10-Windows-Server-2022-Windows-2019-via-command-line-Powershell

Historically to have a running ssh client on Windows it was required to install CygWin or MobaXterm as told in my previous articles Some Standard software programs to install on Windows to make your Desktop feel  more Linux / Unix Desktop and Must have software on Freshly installed Windows OS.
Interesting things have been developed on the Windows scene since then and as of year 2022 on Windows 10 (build 1809 and later) and on Windows 2019, Windows Server 2022, the task to have a running ssh client to use from cmd.exe (command line) became trivial and does not need to have a CygWin Collection of GNU and Open Source tools installed but this is easily done via Windows embedded Apps & Features GUI tool:

To install it from there on 3 easy steps:

 

  1. Via  Settings, select Apps > Apps & Features, then select Optional Features.
  2. Find OpenSSH Client, then click Install
  3. Find OpenSSH Server, then click Install


For Windows domain administrators of a small IT company that requires its employees for some automated script to run stuff for example to tunnel encrypted traffic from Workers PC towards a server port for example to secure the 110 POP Email clients to communicate with the remote Office server in encrypted form or lets say because ssh client is required to be on multiple domain belonging PCs used as Windows Desktops by a bunch of developers in the company it also possible to use PowerShell script to install the client on the multiple Windows machines.

Install OpenSSH using PowerShell
 

To install OpenSSH using PowerShell, run PowerShell as an Administrator. To make sure that OpenSSH is available, run the following cmdlet in PowerShell

Get-WindowsCapability -Online | Where-Object Name -like 'OpenSSH*'


This should return the following output if neither are already installed:

 

Name  : OpenSSH.Client~~~~0.0.1.0
State : NotPresent

Name  : OpenSSH.Server~~~~0.0.1.0
State : NotPresent


Then, install the server or client components as needed:

Copy in PS cmd window

# Install the OpenSSH Client
Add-WindowsCapability -Online -Name OpenSSH.Client~~~~0.0.1.0

# Install the OpenSSH Server
Add-WindowsCapability -Online -Name OpenSSH.Server~~~~0.0.1.0


Both of these should return the following output:
 

Path          :
Online        : True
RestartNeeded : False


If you want to also allow remote access via OpenSSH sshd daemon, this is also easily possible without installing especially an openssh-server Windows variant !

Start and configure OpenSSH Server

To start and configure OpenSSH Server for initial use, open PowerShell as an administrator, then run the following commands to start the sshd service:

# Start the sshd service
Start-Service sshd

# OPTIONAL but recommended:
Set-Service -Name sshd -StartupType 'Automatic'

# Confirm the Firewall rule is configured. It should be created automatically by setup. Run the following to verify
if (!(Get-NetFirewallRule -Name "OpenSSH-Server-In-TCP" -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue | Select-Object Name, Enabled)) {
    Write-Output "Firewall Rule 'OpenSSH-Server-In-TCP' does not exist, creating it…"
    New-NetFirewallRule -Name 'OpenSSH-Server-In-TCP' -DisplayName 'OpenSSH Server (sshd)' -Enabled True -Direction Inbound -Protocol TCP -Action Allow -LocalPort 22
} else {
    Write-Output "Firewall rule 'OpenSSH-Server-In-TCP' has been created and exists."
}


Connect to OpenSSH Server
 

Once installed, you can connect to OpenSSH Server from a Windows 10 or Windows Server 2019 device with the OpenSSH client installed using PowerShell or Command Line tool as Administrator and use the ssh client like you would use it on any *NIX host.

C:\Users\User> ssh username@servername


The authenticity of host 'servername (10.10.10.1)' can't be established.
ECDSA key fingerprint is SHA256:(<a large string>).
Are you sure you want to continue connecting (yes/no)?
Selecting yes adds that server to the list of known SSH hosts on your Windows client.

You are prompted for the password at this point. As a security precaution, your password will not be displayed as you type.

Once connected, you will see the Windows command shell prompt:

Domain\username@SERVERNAME C:\Users\username>

 

How to Create New Windows 10 NTFS Drive partition from new empty ( Unallocated ) space with Windows Disk Management or diskpart command

Thursday, November 18th, 2021

Windows-10-paritioning-with-disk-management-diskmgmt.msc

As mentioned in previous article, I've been setting up a new PC that is a bit old a 11 years old Lenovo ThinkCentre model M90P with 8 GB of Memory, Intel(R) Core(TM) i5 CPU         650  @ 3.20GHz   3.19 GHz, Intel Q57 Express Chipset.

After the installation was successful on the new Desktop PC attached SSD, I was curious to see how Windows detects the 521 GB Solid State Drive Samsung  Disk, as well as to assign all the SSD Disk space, so I don't have unused parts of the drive hanging around.

To get the exact type of SSD installed on the Lenovo ThinkCentre, it comes to a simple PowerShell command (note that the PowerShell command has to be executed as Administrator).

 

Windows PowerShell
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Try the new cross-platform PowerShell https://aka.ms/pscore6

PS C:\Windows\system32> Get-PhysicalDisk

Number FriendlyName               SerialNumber   MediaType CanPool OperationalStatus HealthStatus Usage            Size
—— ————               ————   ——— ——- —————– ———— —–            —-
0      SAMSUNG MZ7LN512HAJQ-00000 S3TVNX0MC04330 SSD       True    OK                Healthy      Auto-Select 476.94 GB


PS C:\Windows\system32>
 

 

PowerShell-Get-PhysicalDisk-command-print-exact-SSD-type-attached-to-a-Windows-computer 

During the Windows installation, I did installed Windows on a 110GB partition that was left behind from my attempt to copy another 120GB ssd drive as, I've described in my previous article.
Cause of that big part of the SAMSUNG MZ7LN512HAJQ-00000 SSD was left unpartitioned ( unallocated ) and respectively the space did not show in Windows, hence to work around this I was supposed to 
create new Windows Drive and format it either in VFAT (FAT32) or NTFS. Through the years when I had to do such an operations I often either booted from some bootCD and did the desired partitioning or if
partitioning had to be done on a LivePC without reboot, I've used Windows Partitioning Software, such as:

  • The Industry Standard Partition Manager ( Acronis Disk Director ) 
     
  • EaseUS Partition Manager


Using a Good partition manager is a great thing if some complicated partitioning operations needs to be done,  however for such a trivial stuff such as mine in that case – Creating a new NTFS filesystem from unallocated space is a bit of nonsense, thus this time I've decided to use the Windows Standard tool for Partitioinng
 

  • Disk Management

To run the tool you need to run Computer Management tool first either by just looking it up in the Search bar near Start menu (Windows 10 flag icon) or by invoking command line start window, by pressing together

Windows Button + R and runnining command:

C:\Users\Emilian> compmgmt.msc

 

From there on navigate to

Storage -> Disk Management

windows-computer-management-screenshot

Go over box Unallocated (365.15 GB) and Press Right Mouse Button and select

-> New Simple Volume

new-simple-volume-screenshot

Next steps are quite self explanatory, had to just follow the New Simple Volme Wizard steps

windows-computer-management-screenshot

windows-computer-management-screenshot-3

windows-computer-management-screenshot-4

I Prefer to use NTFS because it is quicker and kinda of a standard since Windows 8+ onwards, besides that this computer will be used as a simple web browsing station and there is no plans the disk will ever have to be attached to a different OS like UNIX / LInux..However always keep in mind for compitability reasons VFAT Filesystem is usually not a bad idea. 

windows-computer-management-screenshot-5

https://www.pc-freak.net/images/new-ntfs-volume-F-drive-windows-10-screenshot

As you can see the drive is prepared and now accessible from Windows Explorer under Drive F:\. If you wonder why the drive is not D:\, it seems to create the D:\ the unallocated space is supposed to be be on a separate Disk which waas not the case with this PC setup.

After installing the SSD drive and setting the proper partitions another good practice is to use Disk Defragmenter Win tool to optimize the Drives for speed. Another useful feature of disk degragmenter is you can use it to check what kind of hard drive you have installed e.g. SATA or SSD, as well as check if the installed SSD is NVME (Non-Volatile-Memory-Express), e.g. of a faster type.

To run Disk Degrafmenter do  Win key + R
 


C:\Users\Emilian> dfrgui

 

dfrgui-command-screenshot-windows-1

Below is what dfrgui reports on the ThinkCentre after running Disk Optimize for each Drive – (Optimize All) option.

dfrgui-partitions-on-lenovo-thinkcentre-windows-screeshot

Just to show you what you can see with dfrgui, here is the dfrgui screenshot from another PC that has attached both SATA disk and NVME SSD Drive.

dfrgui-command-screenshot-windows-2

 

How to do partitioning from Windows console with diskpart command (useful for scripting)

 

If you're coming from Linux world and you're pretty used to fdisk / cfdisk etc. to do partitioning daily, then you'll be most happy to hear about existence of the diskpart command in Windows, which is a kinda of an equivalent tool.
The tool is perfect for domain administrators which need to do some dynamic partitioning operations on multiple computers at once.

 To use diskpart you need Administrator command prompt, there is much you can do with diskpart, below is how to create another NTFS partition on a secondary

C:\Windows\System32> diskpart

diskpart-win-screenshot-1

DISKPART> list disk

diskpart-win-screenshot-2

DISKPART> select disk 2

diskpart-win-screenshot-3

To clean all the content (e.g. delete everything on hard drive) e.g. all files and directories

!!! BEWARE NOT TO DELETE BY MISTAKE YOUR DATA DON'T BLAME ME IF YOU JUST COPY PASTE IRRESPONSIBLY WITHOUT THINKING.
AFTER ALL IT IS YOUR COMPUTER !!!

DISKPART> clean

 

diskpart-win-screenshot-4

Next lets, create a partition, in below screenshot you can see how to use help and what are the supported partition types in Windows 10 as of year 2021.


/diskpart-help-create-partition-type-screenshot
 

DISKPART> create partition primary

diskpart-win-screenshot-6

To format new assigned primary partition as NTFS

DISKPART> format fs=ntfs

diskpart-win-screenshot-7

Once formatted to assign Drive letter that is the next available free one in order

DISKPART> assign

 

diskpart-win-screenshot-8

If instead of auto assigning a letter to new formatted partition, you would want to assign a specific Drive letter, lets say F:\> as it was in our case with the Graphical Windows Disk Management tool earlier in article.

DISKPART> assign letter=F


Using diskpart it is pretty easy to do much stuff from command line such as formatting a new attached empty unallocated drive, or formatting and setting a desired filesysteem of external attached Hard Drive. Note that the disk list arguments will list any externally attached Supported Storage and you can use disklist similarly to do quick format / repartition / wipe out data or whatever.

Further on just for fun I've run CPUID which is a great Windows freeware tool to report System Information, pretty much like the good old Everest such as exact CPU type, MainBoard, Graphics Card and Mainboard type of the certain hardware you have on running.

cpuid-screenshot-windows-10
 
That's all folks Hope this article, helped you learn something new.

Cheers 😉

 

How to fresh Upgrade mistakenly installed 32-bit Windows 10 Professional to 64-bit Windows / A failure to Disk Clone old SSD 120GB to 512GB HDD due to failed Solid State Drive

Wednesday, November 17th, 2021

upgrade-windows-10-32-bit-to-64-bit-howto-picture

I've been Setting up a new PC with Windows OS that is a bit old a 11 years old Lenovo ThinkCentre model M90P with 8 GB of Memory, Intel(R) Core(TM) i5 CPU         650  @ 3.20GHz   3.19 GHz, Intel Q57 Express Chipset. The machine came to me with Windows 7 preinstalled and the intial goal was to migrate Windows as it is with its data from the old 120GB SSD to new 512 SSD and then to keep the machine at least a bit more up to date to upgrade the old Windows 7 to Windows 10.

This as usual seemed like a very trivial task for a System Administrator, and even if you haven't touched much of Windows as me it makes it look a piece of cake, however as always with computers, once you think you'll be done in 2 hours usually it takes 20+ . Some call it Murphy's law "If something could go wrong then it will go wrong". But putting this situation that I thought all well that's easy lets do it is a kind of a proud Thought for man and the to save us from this Passion of Proudness which according to Church fathers is the worst passion one can have and humiliate us a bit.

God allows some unforseen stuff to happen   🙂 The case with this machine whose original idea I had is to OK I Simply Duplicate the Old Hard Drive to the New one and Place the new one on the ThinkCentre is not a big deal turned to a small adventure 🙂

For this machine hardware I have to say, the old English saying "Old but Gold" is pretty true, especially after I've attached the Samsung 512GB NVME SSD Drive, which my dear friend and brother in Christ "Uncle Emilian" had received as a gift from another friend called Angel. To put even more rant, here name Emilian stems from the Greek Emilianos which translated to English means Adversary.. But anyways The old Intel SSD 120 GB drive which besides being already completely Full of Data,  turned to have Memory DATA Chips (that perhaps burn out / wasted),  so parts of the Drive were Unreadable.
I've realized the fauly SSD fact after, 
trying to first clone the drives with my Hardware Disk Clone device Orico Dual Bay 2.5 6629US3-C device and then using a simple bit to bit copy with dd command.

orico-6629us3-c2-bay-usb3-type-b2.5-type3-5.inch-sata


At first for some weird reason the Cloning of 120GB SSD HDD towards -> 512 GB newer one was unsuccessful – one of the 2 lamp indicators on Source and Destination Drives was continuiously blinking orange as it seemed data could not be read, even though I tried few times and wait for about 1 hour of time for the cloning to complete, so I first suspected that might be an issue with my  last year bought Disk Clone hardware device. So I've attached the 2 Hard Drives towards my Debian GNU / Linux 10 as USB attached drives using the "Toaster" device  and tried a classical copy   from terminal with Disk Druid e.g.


# dd if=/dev/sdb2 of=/dev/sdbc2 bs=180M status=progress conv=noerror, sync

 
dd: error reading '/dev/sdb2': Input/output error
1074889+17746 records in
1092635+0 records out
559429120 bytes (559 MB, 534 MiB) copied, 502933 s, 1.1 kB/s
dd: writing to '/dev/dc2': Input/output error
1074889+17747 records in
1092635+0 records out
559429120 bytes (559 MB, 534 MiB) copied, 502933 s, 1.1 kB/s

Finally I did a manual copy of files from /dev/sdb2 /dev/sdc2 with rsync and part of the files managed to be succesfully copied, about 55Gigabytes out of 110 managed to copy.  Luckily the data on the broken Intel 320 Series 120GB was not top secret stuff so wasting some bits wasn't the end of the world 🙂

Next, I've removed the broken 120Gb SSD which perhaps was about at least 9+ years old and attached to the Lenovo ThinkCentre, the new drive and as my dear friend wanted to have Windows again (his computer has Microsoft "Certificate of Authenticity"), e.g. that OEM Registration Serial Key for Windows 7.

Lenovo-ThinkCentre-M90p-certificate-of-authenticity

I've jumped in and used some old Flash USB Stick Drive to place again Windows 7 (in order to use the same active license) and from there on, I've used another old Windows 10 Installation Bootable stick of mine to upgrade the Windows 7 to Windows 10 (by using this Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade trick it is possible to still continue use your old Windows 7 License Key on Windows 10). So far so good, now I've had Windows 10 Professional Edition installed on the machine, but faced another issue the Memory of the Machine which is 8GB did not get fully detected the machine had detected only 3.22 GB of Memory, for some weird reason.

only-2-80-gb-usable-windows-10-problem-32-bit-cpu-cause-screenshot

After few minutes of investigation online, I've realized, I've installed by mistake a 32 Bit version of Windows 10 Pro…So the next step was of course to upgrade to 64 bit to work around the unrecognized 5.2GB memory… To make sure my Windows 10 Installation is up-to-date I've downloaded the latest one from the Media Creation Installation Tool from Microsoft's website used the tool to burn the Downloaded Image to an Empty USB Stick (mine is 16GB but minimum required would be 4Gb) and proceeded to reboot the Lenovo Desktop machine and boot from the Windows 10 Install Flash Drive. From there on I've had to select I need to install a 64 Bit version of Windows and Skip the Licensing Key fill in Prompt Twice (act as I have no license) as Windows already could recognize the older OEM installed 32 bit install Windows key and automatically fetches the key from there.

Before proceeding to install the 64 Bit Windows, of course double check  that the Machine you have at hand has already the License Key recognized by Microsoft  is 64 Bit capable:

To check 32 bit version of Windows before attempted upgrade is Properly Licensed :

Settings > Update & security > Activation

check-if-windows-is-already-activated-settings-update-and-security-Activation-menus

 

To check whether Hardware is 64 Capable:

Settings -> System -> About

 

is-hardware-processor-64-bit-capable-windows-screenshot

32 bit Windows on x64based processor (Machine supports 64 bit OS)

 

windows10-OS-Installation-media-install-tool

Media Creation Tool Windows 10 MS Installer tool (make sure you select 64-bit (x86) instead of the default

From the Installer, I've installed Windows just like I install a brand new fersh Win OS and after asking the few trivial Installation Program questions landed to the new working OS and proceeded to install the usual software which are a must have on a freshly installed Windows for some of them check my previous article Essential Must have software to install on Fresh  new Windows installation host.

How to create SD Card DATA dump image to .ISO with dd and mount it with imdisk from command line on Windows CygWin with MobaXterm

Saturday, September 18th, 2021

dd-command-logo
I'm forced to use Windows every now and then and do some ordinary things which I do usually on Linux such as dumping the content of my Android phone SD Card SanDisk, Kingston etc. to .ISO image etc.

On Linux creating and mounting a data copy of a whole SD Card is a relatively simple thing and there are plenty of ways to do it such as using the dd ( command-line utility for Unix and Unix-like operating systems whose primary purpose is to convert and copy files as said in the command manual .- e.g. ''man dd'. ). On Microsoft Windows environment perhaps one of easiest ways is to use WinCDEmu (which is relatively free under LGPL License).
WinCDEmu is capable of doing plenty of things such as:
 

  • One-click mounting of ISO, CUE, NRG, MDS/MDF, CCD, IMG images.

  • Supports unlimited amount of virtual drives.

  • Runs on 32-bit and 64-bit Windows versions from XP to Windows 10.

  • Allows creating ISO images through a context menu in Explorer.

  • Small installer size – less than 2MB!

  • Have a portable version

WinCDEmu is a nice piece of software that perhaps every Win poweruser can enjoy, plus it has a nice Graphical frontend:

wincdemu-graphical-create-iso-and-mount-so-ms-windows-software

But what if you're a console geek, like me and you end up forced to be using Windows on your Work PC and you still need to create .iso dump of your Mobile SD Card or external attached Hard Drive, without the graphical mambo jumbo in the old fashioned way with dd?

Luckily Windows advanced command lined users could massively benefit from Cygwin + Mobaxterm (if you don't know or used MobaXterm and you still use things like Putty / SuperPutty or SecureCRT – perhaps you can reconsider and make your sysadmin life easier with MobaXerm gnome-terminal like SSH tabbed Windows alternative.

Once having mobaxterm + cygwin you have dd installed on the Windows host as it is part of the busybox minimal environment and you can use it in the same manner as your used in Linux environment.

sdcard-sandisk-drive-my-computer-windows-screenshot
 

1. Using dd to copy files on Linux / UNIX OS with a dialog status bar

To use dd the usual syntax on Linux / BSD / Unix is:
 

dd if=/dev/dev-name_ID of=/path/to/directory/dump/location.iso bs=2048

 

As 2048 BS (Bytes) per second is quite a low value usually on Modern operating systems, this bytesize is usually increased to some MBs  ( Megabytes).

For example if the reading from carrier  is Solid State Drive Disk (SSD) supporting 100 MBs per second and the output SD Card is a 32 Bit Kingston Plus+ drive with whose write speed is up to 50 ~ 100 MBs, you can use cmd as:

dd if=/dev/dev-name_ID of=/path/to/directory/dump/location.iso bs=100M


If you need to have a progress on the dd copy (in case if you copy some large SD Card 128 GB or 256GB or a full copy of a hard drive partition that is really big lets say 8 Terabytes of data, dialog and pv comes quite handy.

To use them install them first:

# apt-get install –yes pv dialog


Next to have a beautiful ncurses dialog box with the status (very useful if you're shell scripting), use:
 

(pv -n /dev/sda | dd of=/dev/sdb bs=128M conv=notrunc,noerror) 2>&1 | dialog –gauge "Running dd command (cloning), please wait…" 10 70 0

pv-dialog-dd-command-ncurses-status-screenshot-gnu-linux
 

2. Listing the avaialble copy drives /dev/sda /dev/sdb1 … etc. disk locations on Windows 7 / 10 / 11 OS

[User.T420-89] ➤ for F in /dev/s* ; do echo "$F    $(cygpath -w $F)" ; done

check-drives-loop-on-cygwin-to-be-used-later-with-dd-copy-iso-creating-imageCheck drives device naming on WIndows PC – Screenshot extract from Mobaxterm

As you can see the drive location we've seen in Windows Explorer is located at drive E: above bash for loop reveals us this is located and readable from CygWin / MobaxTerm at /dev/sdb1


3. Create .iso image file on WIndows OS with dd command
 

To create a full data copy dump of to .iso (image file) with dd on Windows , I had to run:

[User.T420-89] ➤ dd if=/dev/sdb1 of=sdcard-blu-r1-hd-sdcard-backup_10092021a.img bs=100M

75+1 records in
75+1 records out
7944011776 bytes (7.4GB) copied, 391.794316 seconds, 19.3MB/s


dd-copy-drive-data-screenshot-100mb-bitesize-windows-mobaxterm


4. Mount the newly create dd Image with imdisk

In order to test the image is properly created, you can attempt to mount it from command line on Linux, mounting it is quite easy and is up to mounting the just created .img file as a loopback (loop) device, like so: 

# mount -o loop file.iso /mnt/dir

Unfortunately cygwin and mobaxterm's embedded mount command on Win OS does not support the loopback device so to have it you have to install and use some additional program  such as the upmentioned WinCDEmu or if you prefer to do it fully from command line and further on automate the process of creating a dump of images of attached drives out of a multiple computers (lets say belonging to a Windows Active Directory domain). You might install and use something like:


imdisk 

imdisk-gui-interface-ms-windows-screenshot

imdisk handy tool is  created by Olof Lagerkvist. It is free and open-source software, which  will let you mount image files of hard drive, cd-rom or floppy, and create one or several ramdisks with various parameters either from a command line or via its Graphical interface.

To use imdisk download it from its home page on sourceforge extract and install it, pretty much as any other software it has both 32 bit version as a legacy for old computers as well as 64 bit exe installer.
The general command line use of it follows a cmd syntax like:

  • Mounting .iso image files from command line on WIndows host with imdisk


[User.T420-89] ➤ ImDisk.exe -a -f "sdcard-blu-r1-hd-sdcard-backup_10092021.img" -m #:

Where:
 

  • #: – is the actual drive you would like to mount to.
     
  • -a option stands for attach to, it will configure and attach a virtual disk with the parameters specified and attach it to the system.
     
  • -f – is self explanatory, provides the iso image file naming 

If you want to attach the newly created image to lets say  L:\ windows new mapped drive

ImDisk.exe -a -f "sdcard-blu-r1-hd-sdcard-backup_10092021.img" -m l:

  • Unmount mounted .img image with imdisk from cmd line

[User.T420-89] ➤ imdisk.exe -l
\Device\ImDisk0
                                                                                                                              ✘

[User.T420-89] ➤ imdisk.exe -D -m l:
Notifying applications…
Flushing file buffers…
Locking volume…
Failed, forcing dismount…
Removing device…
Removing mountpoint…
Done.

imdisk-detach-attached-drive-mobaxterm-windows-screenshot

 

What we learned ?

What we have learned in this article is how to use Mobaxterm embedded dd Data Convert and Copy command to prepare full image backups of SD card or external drives on Windows OS. Also few alternative ways were entions such as using WinCDEmu free  open source alternative to DaemonTools program to create / mount or convert the image for the GUI lovers. Also for hard core sysadmins as me was shown how to list drives devices attached to the Win PC {/dev/sda,/dev/sdb} etc. and how to copy partition data with dd just like one would do on Linux OS. Finally to test the created image, I've shown you how to use the imdisk free software tool to attach and detach image to a mapped local Windows drive.

Hope this article learned you something new.

Remove “Windows 7 PC is out of Support” annoying reoccuring warning popup alert

Friday, September 10th, 2021

Windows-7-End-of-life-pc-is-out-of-support-removal-rip-win-7

Since January 15th 2020, Windows 7 which reached its End of Life (EOL)  and is no longer Supported. Windows 7 Service Pack 1 Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, and Professional installations will display the message


"Your Windows 7 PC is out of support".

The use of Windows 7, since 2020 is steadily declining but some hard core maniacs, who refuse to be in tune with latest fashion do still roll Windows 7 on dedicated VPS Servers (running on Xen / VMWare etc.).
With the reach of End of Support, people who still run Windows 7 have no longer the usual Operating system provided.

  • No security updates
  • No software updates
  • No tech support

Even though running End of Support system is quite dangerous and you might get hacked easily by autometed bot, still for some custom uses and if the Windows 7 Runs behind a solid firewall it could be considered relatively safe.

Microsoft hence made their Windows (remote controlled system) to have an annoying pop up window with the "YOUR WINDOWS 7 PC IS OUT OF SUPPORT" as shown in below screenshot:

windows-7-disable-pc-is-out-of-support-popup-annoying-message-screenshot.

For those who don't plan to migrate from Windows 7 to Windows 10, this message becomes quickly very annoying especially if you happen to access remotely your Windows 7 VPS and use it for simple things as browsing a few news websites or you're a marketer and you use the Windows for accessing Amazon / Ebay from a different country as many Marketers do to access General Webstores emulating access from a remote location. 


Disable "Your Windows 7 PC is out of support" popup alert
 

Luckily it is possible to disable this annoying Your Windows 7 pop-up alert by setting a value key in Windows Registry
DiscontinueEOS to 1.

To do so launch from Administrator command  line cmd.exe prompt (or start it from Windows start menu):

regedit

1. Open Windows Registry Editor and navigate to

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\EOSNotify.

 You will need to set the DWORD DiscontinueEOS value to 1 in the Windows Registry
 

windows-7-disable-pc-is-out-of-support-popup-eosnotify-dword-registry-03-600x366

windows-7-disable-pc-is-out-of-support-popup-discontinueEOS-registry-modify

–  In case EOSNotify key is not available, right-click the CurrentVersion key and select New > Key and name it EOSNotify.

windows-7-disable-pc-is-out-of-support-popup-EOSNotify-create-new-key-600x367

2. Right click anywhere in the right pane and select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value and name it DiscontinueEOS.

3. Set Value data to 1 and click OK.

windows-7-disable-pc-is-out-of-support-popup-edit-dword-32-bit-value-regedit-screenshot.

4. When the new value has been set, Restart the Windows7 computer / Virtual machine, to make sure registry setting take effect.

windows-7-disable-pc-is-out-of-support-popup-discontninueEOS-reg-dword-0x000000001-600x248

 

To automate the procedure in large environments, you can create a small script using the reg  command load the Registry key or use Windows GPO (Group Policy Object) to enforce the setting across all Active Directory PC members.
 

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\EOSNotify]
"DiscontinueEOS"=dword:00000001
custom GPO in Active Directory.

To avoid potential issues using a non supported OS, you should start planning to upgrade your Windows 7 clients to Windows 10.

That's it ! Out of support Windows 7  alert should no longer bug you 🙂