Category Archives: software

Using mplayer/mencoder to convert to an MPEG

MEncoder is a useful media encoder that comes with MPlayer The Movie Player

To use, you’ll need to download and install MPLAYER as well as the extra plugins. You may also need Real Player, Quicktime, Windows Media Player installed (or an alternative.)

OK I’m always having to lookup the mencoder flags for encoding video files, so heres a useful example:

c:\mplayer\>mencoder.exe input.file -of mpeg -ovc lavc -oac lavc 
                  -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg2video:acodec:mp2 -o output.file

of = Output File ovc = Output Video Codec

The rest of the options can be looked up.

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Cannot delete AVI/MPEG Video Files

This problem occurs when windows is trying to show you a preview picture of your video, whilst you are trying to delete the file. So then you get a message telling you the file is still in use and the delete operation fails. Solution? Stop windows from showing you thumbnail images of your videos.

Start -> Run -> regedit
Edit -> Find

In the search box type this:

{87D62D94-71B3-4b9a-9489-5FE6850DC73E}

Tick the box titled ‘Keys’ and untick the others. It should find the key for ‘AVI Properties handler.’ Right click the key from the left window pane (with the folder tree view) and click export. Choose a file name to export the key to, and click OK. Now you can delete the key you just exported. If anything goes wrong, you can double click the .reg file you just created to restore the key.

You can also delete the following keys:

{40C3D757-D6E4-4b49-BB41-0E5BBEA28817}
Video Media Properties Handler

{c5a40261-cd64-4ccf-84cb-c394da41d590}
Video thumbnail extractor

Working with Microsoft SQL Server MDF LDF Files

This article is about .MDF and .LDF files. These files are created by Microsoft SQL Server, and if you have some of these, and you want to view their contents read on.

The files I had originated from a Microsoft SQL Desktop Edition 2000 (MSDE) server. I’m assuming these instructions will work for other versions as well.

Download MSDE2000

You can download the 42MB MSDE 2000 Release A file from here:

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=413744D1-A0BC-479F-BAFA-E4B278EB9147&displaylang=en
 

Install MSDE2000

If you run the file you saved it will ask you to choose a folder to extract the setup files to. Please select a folder, or just click next. The files will unpack.

Open a command prompt from Start ->All Programs -> Accessories -> Command Prompt

It will show you something like this:

Microsoft Windows XP [Version 5.1]
(C) Copyright 1985-2001 Microsoft Corp.

C:\Documents and Settings\username>

Type the following in and press enter:

C:\Documents and Settings\username> cd C:\the\folder\you\extracted\your\files\to\goes\here
C:\the\folder\i\extracted\my\files\to> setup.exe SAPWD=YOUR_PASSWORD_GOES_HERE
This is the type of window that should show next
This is the type of window that should show next

Setup will commence, and you should have your server installed.

Graphical Administration Tool

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=c039a798-c57a-419e-acbc-2a332cb7f959
 

I tried this, but couldn’t get it to work. I wasn’t using IIS.

Command Line Administration using OSQL

OK back to basics. osql.exe is in this folder:

%ProgramFiles%\Microsoft SQL Server\80\Tools\Binn\

By default this is:

C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\80\Tools\Binn\

Open a command prompt and cd into that directory:

C:\...\80\Tools\Binn\>osql /?
usage: osql         [-U login id]       [-P password]
etc

Read the stuff that it prints out here.

The -E’ switch means trusted connection, so we’ll use that to login

C:\...\80\Tools\Binn\>osql -E

1> sp_help
1> go

A whole load of text will fly by. This is the output of the sp_help command. Type ‘go’ and hit return to execute the commands you have typed in at the prompt.

Attaching the MDF/LDF Files:

To view your MDF/LDF files  you need to attach the database files to the server. The commands are as follows:

1>EXEC sp_attach_db @dbname = N'CHOOSE_DATABASE_NAME_AND_TYPE_IT_HERE',
1>   @filename1 = N'C:\YOUR_FILE.mdf',
1>   @filename2 = N'C:\YOUR_FILE.ldf'
1>go

To view info on the databases currently attached, you can use these commands:

1>select * from sysdatabases
1>go
1>select * from INFORMATION_SCHEMA.TABLES
1>go

You can now use SQL statements as follows:

1>USE YOUR_DATABASE_NAME
1>select * from YOUR_TABLE_NAME
1>go

If you want to output the result of your SQL query in a file use:

C:\...\Binn>osql /E /d YOUR_DB_NAME /Q "select * from YOUR_TABLE_NAME" -o outputfile.txt

If you want to authenticate using a host/username/password to login:

C:\...\Binn>osql /U sa /P YOUR_PASSWORD /d YOUR_DB_NAME /S your.server.name.or.ip.address /Q "select * from YOUR_TABLE" -o outputfile.txt

Some more useful commands:

1>sp_helpdb mydb
1>go

1>EXEC sp_grantlogin ‘Test’
1>EXEC sp_grantdbaccess ‘Test’, ‘database_name’
1>EXEC sp_addlogin ‘test’,’hello’
1>EXEC sp_password ‘OLDPASS’, ‘NEWPASS’,’Test’

 

Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 SP1 error 2711

Whilst installing .NET framework 3.0 Service Pack 1, I accidentally pulled the power cord on the laptop. When I started up again, it kept giving me the 2711 error message.

Cleaning the temporary file folders didn’t solve this. The answer was stowed away on a forum found via google:

  • Go into Start Menu -> Control Panel -> Add/Remove programs
  • Find the  ‘.NET framework 3.0’ entry and click the ‘change‘ button
  • The setup will run, you should select the repair option.
  • Once that completes, you can rerun the SP1 setup and it should work fine.