Blizzard Hearthstone Blank Screen Not Responding FIX

If you are trying to play Hearthstone, now in open BETA, and are having a problem where as soon as you hit the Play button the screen or window goes dark and the process in the task manager says it’s “Not Responding”, I may have a fix for you.

I had this very same problem and after no help from the forums or tech support, I figured it out myself. Really it was just basic troubleshooting. Getting to the part that helped me with the problem, I disabled my firewall and associated agents (I am running Avast Internet Security, one of the best), the game suddenly ran fine! Imagine that. That meant that the problem was with my firewall. Sure enough, I re-enabled everything and the game stopped working, went right back to the blank screen.

So, here is where the fix comes in. Even if you aren’t running Avast, this could be your problem regardless of what brand of firewall you are running. Check out what I found and see if you have the same problem with your firewall.

I went into the settings and in the application specific rules section, where firewall rules are associated with specific executable programs, I found rules for the Blizzard Agent, the Updater and many more, even the Hearthstone Setup executable. What I did not find was any rule for the Hearthstone game app at all! They had rules for everything but the game itself! So, I simply added a rule for the Hearthstone executable itself

C:\Program Files(x86)\Heartstone\Hearthstone.exe on my system

and then all went well after that, the game ran fine. The whole problem was that the game executable could not talk through the firewall. Once that was enabled, everyone was happy, including me! I hope that helps you with your problem.

Install VB6 on Win7

I can’t help it, I still dig my trusty Visual Basic 6. Yeah I have and use Visual Studio 2010 but I miss my old school tools and besides, I have a ton of stuff written in that language. So, I decided to install it on my Win7 box. I found a great resource for it and thought I would let everyone know about it just in case you happened to have an itch for doing the same thing I did.  Check out the information here at Forty Pound Head.

Article URL: http://www.fortypoundhead.com/showcontent.asp?artid=20502

Create Your Site’s Favicon In One Step

folderAre you working on a website? Do you want to do all of the creating and coding of the ‘favicon’ stuff by hand? Heck no, it’s a pain in the rear! No doubt you can do it but it takes a long time and it gets old after you do it a few bazillion times, right? So what’s a poor web developer to do? Well, check out this site: Faviconit.com! Upload one image, and press a button. Their site turns that not only into the regular favicon you need, but all of the variants for other systems, mobile, different browsers and more. Plus, you get the code that makes it all work too. Upload your image, hit the button, and you get a zip file with all of your goodies in it. Now, how much does this cost I hear you asking. Yet another great thing about this site, it is completely free!! So go check it out and off load some of your website setup work for a change! Enjoy!!

Post Link: http://faviconit.com

Quickly backup files with this bash script

Bash scriptThis is something that I use on a regular basis on all of my servers. How many times have you been ready to edit a file and either don’t make a backup copy or make one but by now are real tired of typing out copy one file to another name with a date stamp and blah blah blah. It’s not hard to do, but it gets old quick typing the same thing over and over again, plus you might not always name them the same thing or the same way, so now your backup files have different naming patterns and whatnot.

Don’t worry, I have an easy solution. I created a simple script to backup the file specified and append a time and date stamp to the end of it. I symlink this to the command ‘bu’ in someplace like /usr/bin so it’s always in the path of whatever user I might be (myself, root, backup, whoever?), and then POW, it’s easy to backup files plus they are always named the same way – you just type “bu filename”. Now, if you don’t like the way I name my file copies, feel free to customize this to suit your needs. Also, I currently have the script make the copy right next to the original file, but it would be easy to always copy the files to a backup directory somewhere if you wanted, the possibilities are endless!

OK, on to the script goodness:

#!/bin/bash
 
if [ "$1" == "" ]; then
  echo "No input given, stopping"
  exit
fi
 
YEAR=`date | awk '{print $6}'`
MONTH=`date | awk '{print $2}'`
DAY=`date | awk '{print $3}'`
TIME=`date | awk '{print $4}' | awk -F: '{print $1"-"$2"-"$3}'`
 
echo -n "Backing up the file named $1 ... "
/bin/cp -p $1 $1_${YEAR}.${MONTH}.${DAY}_${TIME} > /tmp/bu_run.log 2>&1
echo "done."

There you have it, a simple file backup script it bash that can save you time and many, many keystrokes. Drop me a comment and let me know what you think, or if you have any suggestions or improvements.

Command Line Encryption And Decryption Of Files Made Easy!

Encryption iconHey folks, here’s a fun little tidbit for you. Did you know that you can easily and quickly encrypt and decrypt files using one tiny little command on your super cool Linux or UNIX (Yes, OSX counts) and even Windows command line? For those that haven’t yet heard of it, it’s a command called ‘ccrypt‘. Check it out …

First we need to install ccrypt on on your system. For Debian and Ubuntu (which is based on Debian), you can simply use the apt package manager to do this. Remember that you can use the -s flag to test or simulate the install before you actually go through with it in order to make sure there are no surprises waiting for you. Logged in as your un-privileged account, the command would look like this:

sudo apt-get -s install ccrypt

Assuming everything went off as planned, you could then run the real thing:

sudo apt-get install ccrypt

For Redhat (CentOS, and others based on Redhat), they have RPM packages available for download. Along with those they have Debian, Solaris (SPARC and i386), OS/2, SuSE, OpenBSD, and FreeBSD packages as well as pre-compiled binaries for lots of platforms and OS’s, so go crazy people!!

OK, now that you have the package installed, you can have some fun whiling away the afternoon encrypting and decrypting files like mad!

To encrypt a file, run this command:

ccrypt file_name

It’s just that easy.

Naturally, you would replace ‘file_name’ with your real file information. You will be asked to enter a key or password two times. Once complete, the encrypted file will have an extension of ‘.cpt’, and the original un-encrypted file will be replaced by the encrypted file.

To decrypt the file, run the same command the same way and simply add the -d flag.

ccrypt -d file_name

You will be asked for the encryption key or password that you gave it when you encrypted it in the first place, so don’t lose it! As always you can use the ‘–help’ flag or hit up the man pages for more detailed information. Hope you enjoy it!

**ALERT**
**Danger, Will Robinson!**
Cheesy I know, but I hope it’s working. One more time – please note that when you run the command to encrypt a file, the original source file, the un-encrypted file gets replaced by the newly encrypted file. So if you are simply making an encrypted copy for example, the original is gone. If you lose or forget the encryption key or password you will be out of luck. I’m sure it can be cracked by someone, but boy that would be a pain in the arse! So, keep that in mind when you encrypt a file, the file you are encrypting goes bye, bye! It works the same way when un-encrypting, but that’s not as potentially dangerous.

Oracle Sun Microsystems T2000 (and similar) ALOM/SC Password Recovery

ServerSo today, I am working on a nice little Sun Microsystems T2000 server. It was purchased used by my customer and I am setting it up. Right away I ran into a snag, naturally, because I didn’t have the ALOM (Advanced Lights Out Management) or SC (System Controller) password for this machine. According to the person that sold the server, it was pulled from a working environment, the drives were wiped and it was sent out to be sold. This means that I had no way to get the old password from anyone, therefore I had to get past it myself.

Let me lay it out for you. In this situation you can’t really recover the password or see what it currently is. The only option at this point is to go in and clear out or erase the ALOM NVRAM so that you can then get access and setup a new password. In order to do this, you will need to connect your laptop to the serial management port. You can do this with a laptop or PC or whatever but for the sake of this article I am going to just use laptop. You will also need access to the power cords, because you are going to have to physically cut the power to the server to get started. OK, ready? Got everything in order? OK, let’s begin. Continue reading