Category Archives: Uncategorized

HP Spectre Build 2015 Build Drivers for Windows 10

Since it is quite hidden.  I decided to upload a package for everyone to get the drivers for Windows 10 on the HP Spectre laptop we received at Microsoft Build 2015.

Here is the driver files:

I also highly recommend making the UEFI boot usb from the ISO of Windows 10.  Details here:


Raspberry Pi WIFI under Arch Linux


I haven’t seen an updated tutorial on how to get Wireless working with Arch Linux.  So, here is the latest information.  It is actually in the loader if you used NOOBS.  But, a quick search on the web turned few results.

I used the EDIMAX 150Mbps Wireless 802.11b/g/n nano USB Adapter. It was only $10 and works great!

With a fresh install you can do the following:


You should see the following output:


To enable wifi at boot-time issue the following command:

systemctl enable netctl-auto@wlan0

Don’t forget to update your system when you get a chance with:

pacman -Syu

Hope this quick reference helps.

- Chris



City Caller ID – My First Android App

So, I took some time this weekend to develop an Android application.  The application displays the city name and state someone is calling from.  This application is something I’ve wanted on a phone.

Due to a patent that is already on this technology, I had to remove it.



Acer Aspire 1420P Touch Screen Problem (Dead Zones) – PDC Laptop

My Microsoft PDC Laptop suffered from dead zones on the screen after a few days.  I had a couple options.  One of them being to return the laptop.  The other one was to open it and fix it myself.  Since I am quite impatient, I decided to try and fix it.

I made a video and I put a few steps down on how I fixed the dead zones.

1. Unscrew the two little screws next to the pivot point of the screen.  They are under two rubber nubs.  They are easy to remove with a jewlers screwdriver (I highly suggest using this method).

2. Push around the screen bezel until it pops up.  Do this gently and without a lot of pressure.  It should snap up pretty easy.

3. Unscrew the 4 screws holding the touch screen together.

4. Snap up the little plastic connector on the large ribbon cable in the bottom left of the screen.  You may need to remove a piece of clear tape on it.  (The connector snaps up from the top of it.  It does not slide forward or back).

5. Gently move the screen away from the connector.  There are two little screws on the left hand of the touch screen.  Loosen them and push the metal bar on the screen up away from the connector and retighten those screws.  (This will push the connector in better when it is mounted.

6. Clean the connector with a contact cleaner.  I used tuner cleaner from radio shack.  I’m sure there are alternatives.  (You may omit this step and it could work fine.)

NOTE: When I did this, it would work for an hour.  It wasn’t until I removed the black strip on the top of the connector that it started working again.  (The black strip is on the screen’s connector.  Not the connector on the board!)

7. Push the connector in tight and put snap the connector back down.

8. Screw in the four screen screws.  At this point.  I booted up and tested.  That is up to you.

9. Snap back on the bezel and finish up.


Function to remove letters from a string in SQL Server

 I found a function at

that removes letters from a varchar in SQL Server.  I found it to be a bit slow for my needs.  So, I made the following function that performs better for me.

alter function NoLetters(@string2number varchar(200)) returns varchar(200)
 declare @c int
 declare @num varchar(200)
 set @num = ”
 declare @txtCurrent char(1)
 set @c=1
 while @c<=len(@string2number)
  set @txtCurrent = substring(@string2number,@c,1)
  if ascii(@txtCurrent) between 48 and 57
   set @num = @num + @txtCurrent

  set @c=@c+1
return @num

To use the function it can be added to a print statement like
PRINT dbo.NoLetters(‘ABC1234′)
This will return 1234


Dell m1530 grainy LCD/Display


I have never had so many things wrong with one laptop.  After lots of eye strain I decided that I needed to research why my laptop was so hard to read under dim lighting conditions.  I have had Toshiba’s and HP’s that never shared this problem.  I found several forums talking about grainy screens on the Dell XPS m1530.  I had spent a lot on the two laptops that my wife and I wanted.  I expect some quality.  These were my first Dell laptops (and could be my last).  The lcd screen is dim, grainy, and unclear!

Here is some of the most important information I compiled from all the forums:

WSXGA+ 1680×1050 Panels
LG Philips LPLF300 – Dell P/N: XK309 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Not Grainy
Samsung SEC3350 – Dell P/N: RW985 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Grainy

WSXGA/WXGA+ 1440×900 Panels
AU Optronics AUO2077 – Dell P/N: GU429 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Grainy
Samsung SEC3157 – Dell P/N: Unknown – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Some Grain
LG Philips LPLDF00 – Dell P/N: XP059 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Not Grainy

Samsung SEC4457 – Dell P/N: Unknown – Size: 14.1″ – Experience: Grainy

WXGA 1280×800 Panels
AU Optronics (Model Unknown) – Dell P/N: UX303 – Size: 14.1″ – Experience: Unknown
LG Philips LPL0000 – Dell P/N: WR362 – Size: 14.1″ – Experience: Not Grainy

Don’t wait on the screen.  Get it replaced.  My dell is barely 3 months old and I have already had the motherboard replaced and a new CPU.  The laptop looks good; but, it feels flimsy.  I wouldn’t recommend it anymore.

Some pictures of the differences:


Here is the transcript from the online chat I had with tech support.  I only included the important parts:

Session Started with Agent (Dell Rep 1)
Agent (Dell Rep 1): “Thank you for contacting Dell XPS Premium Support. My name is ….  and my rep ID number is XXXXXXX. How may I help you today?”
ThreadAbort: “Hello, my laptop screen is grainy and hurts my eyes.”
ThreadAbort: “There is something wrong with it.”
Session Started with Agent (Dell Rep 2)
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Hello and welcome to the Dell XPS experience. My name is …. . How may I assist you today?”
ThreadAbort: “Hello, my laptop screen is grainy and hurts my eyes.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I’m sorry that you have this issue, please don’t worry I’ll try my best to help you resolve this.”
ThreadAbort: “Ok”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Please allow me 2 to 3 minutes to pull up your account information. In the meantime, may I have the phone number(s) to reach you incase of a follow-up?”
ThreadAbort: “1-XXX-XXX-XXXX”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you for staying connected.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “As I can see from the records, you need assistance with the XPS 1530 with an operating system as Windows Vista Ultimate. Am I correct?”
ThreadAbort: “yes”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Since when are you facing this issue”
ThreadAbort: “since I got this laptop. It is hurting my eyes more and more. I thought I could live with it. But, now it just bothers me too much.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Is the issue with the same system we are chatting on?”
ThreadAbort: “yes. I have it hooked to an external monitor”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Okay.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I can connect to your computer remotely, with your permission and check with a few settings on it.”
ThreadAbort: “ok. if you like. But, I am a computer expert and know that this LCD is grainy and of poor quality.”
ThreadAbort: “it looks fantastic on my external monitor”
ThreadAbort: “btw.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I appreciate your expertise, Christopher.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Did you try to update the BIOS and checked if that made any difference?”
ThreadAbort: “yes, I am running A08. The latest”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Okay.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Christopher, please give me a minute here while I check with my supervisor if I can replace the LCD for you.”
ThreadAbort: “thanks …”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “You are welcome, Christopher.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you for your patience, Christopher.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I have managed to take my supervisor’s approval and I will go ahead and replace the LCD for you.”
ThreadAbort: “thank you. That would be very helpful!”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “My pleasure!”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I will go-ahead and create a dispatch. Would you please verify the shipping address?”
ThreadAbort: …
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Could you please give me 2-3 minutes while I create a dispatch for the part? I will give you the details after that.”
ThreadAbort: “sure. Thanks.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “You are welcome,”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Christopher, I can send you a service technician to replace the LCD. is that okay?”
ThreadAbort: “sure. I can do it myself. But, a service tech is fine too. :)
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “All right. I will send a service technician :)
ThreadAbort: “sounds good.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you for your patience.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I have created the dispatch. Please make a note of your dispatch number. The dispatch number # is XXXXXXX.”
ThreadAbort: “ok. Got it.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “The service technician will come down to your place to replace the part within 3-5 business days.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Christopher, the service technician will give you a call tomorrow or day after and will set an appointment with you.”
ThreadAbort: “great. Thanks …!”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “My pleasure.”



As you can see, my experience with the online chat mode was great.  I hate calling Dell though, I get bounced around the world.

Some more information at:

Be sure to vote up this idea:


Dell m1530 no longer turns on

Well, I’ve had the dell for a month or two and it already required an entire motherboard replacement.  If you tried to turn it on, the blue light on the power would come on for a second.  Nothing else would turn on.

After contacting dell support, the guy said a tech would have to look at it.  He said his computer went down at dell and that he would have to call me the next day.  I never got a call.  So, I tried again in a few days.  The tech had me remove the hard drive and the lan card.  He then claimed it was the motherboard and was going to send one out with a tech.

The good news is that the computer works again.  The bad news is I am extremely worried about the quality of my new m1530.  It died in less than a couple months of ownership!  I have never had another brand with an issue like that.

Another issue I had with Dell was with when I bought it.  I chose Dell Financing due to the Zero percent financing if I paid it off in a year.  I figured that would be a great idea since it costs nothing to me.  So, I patiently watched my order status move from order made to processing.  It sat there for a week and then one part of my order got cancelled!  It was the LoJack part, so that didn’t bother me because it was something I didn’t want for free.  I called them, since they didn’t bother to call me.  Bounced through about 10 people in their system.  To find later that they thought my order was fraud without even picking up a phone to call or having something that asked me to call.

Finally a rep talked to me and asked me everything that made me feel uncomfortable.  Personal information and such.  That guy could have taken all this information and lived as me. 

Needless to say, this will be the last time I purchase from this company.  They simply need to have some midwest call centers that solve problems at one person in 10 minutes then bouncing me around for 2-3 hours and making me curse Dell.

UPDATE: title change.

Ajax Control Toolkit problem

I need to research this a bit more, but I will give a quick fix that I did.

So, I started an AJAX Web Application in Visual Studio 2008 and then added the latest Ajax Control Toolkit for 3.5.  I made a simple page and wanted to use the Auto Complete Control.  So, I added a simple text box and then added the Auto Complete Extender.  There was then a item to add the event of this control to your code behind.

I got this error:

Cannot create page method “GetCompletionList” because no CodeBehind or CodeFile was found.

I spent quite a few hours looking throuh solutions and couldn’t find anything that was of much help.

I decided to start over.  I created the application a little differently this time.  Instead of a new project, I started a New Web Site.  Repeated the same steps and it works fine.

The problem has to do with VSWebProjectItem.  The standard AJAX Web Application with project file does not consider itself a “Web Project” and causes the AJAX toolkit to error.

Dell m1530 Blue Screen of Death

So, I bought one of those nice Dell m1530 laptops this month.  I almost installed everything on it when I started getting a blue screen of death on shutdown.

I finally narrowed it down to the Intel Wireless Driver.  The one on Windows Update caused my laptop to blue screen on shutdown.  So, I clicked into the driver page and clicked roll-back driver.  Now everything works.

ThreadAbortException – Response.Redirect

If you have ever seen this exception while debugging a web application:

A first chance exception of type ‘System.Threading.ThreadAbortException’ occurred in mscorlib.dll
An exception of type ‘System.Threading.ThreadAbortException’ occurred in mscorlib.dll but was not handled in user code

To cut down on exceptions in your ASP.NET applications with Response.Redirect, you need to use the overloaded redirect method.  Under the hood, the CLR will throw an exception to ensure the page execution is halted.

private void SomeEvent(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
//This will throw an exception so that the CLR ensures the end of execution.

    //This performs better when this overload function’s second arg is set to false
//because an exception will not be thrown.
Response.Redirect(““, false);

 The only issue is that the page continues to execute.  This may not be desired.