Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Can't type username in ACT Premium Web login (greyed out)

We had an ACT v19.2 client unable to use the remote internet login via ACT Premium Web access. When they got to the sign-in screen for ACT it showed the database name correctly, but the username and password prompts were greyed out. You weren't able to type anything in those fields and consequently were unable to login.


At first we suspected some Microsoft updates to .NET that had been loaded on the server over the weekend. However it turned out to be less obvious, the Protexis Licensing V2 service that is located on the ACT server had stopped and failed to restart. Once this was started again, the ability to type username and password in the browser was restored.

Friday, 17 November 2017

3 PCs missing from AVG Avast Cloudcare Console

Strange problem at one site with AVG CloudCare v3.6.4. Only one of 3 particular PCs would ever appear in the console at once. Lets call them PC26 (Maint), PC29 (Chef) and PC31 (Accts). This week PC29 was listed, status ok, updates ok. It even had the correct label name against it showing that is was Chef's computer. I tried reinstalling PC31 which succeeded, but it appeared on the list with the name Chef rather than Accts - and PC29 dropped off the list. I relabelled it to Accts, then PC29 came back on the list instead but with the new label.

Took me a while initially to realise that all three were essentially sharing one database entry and the last change/install took precedence as far as the console list was concerned.

Also tried removing AVG CloudCare off all three PCs at once and using the AVG Remover tool, rebooting, then reinstalling each one. And the same again but with the brand new 4.0.2 release of Avast Business Cloudcare. No chance.

In the end, after 25 mins online with tech support, we used the 'setup.exe -b' command to re-register the clients to the CloudCare database and reset registry keys. This cleared the problem and all clients came up normally.


To use setup -b, start a command prompt with Admin rights. Then change to the appropriate directory, depending upon client and 32 or 64 bit, eg
C:\Program Files(x86)\AVG\CloudCare   or
C:\Program Files(x86)\AVAST Software\Business Agent\



Monday, 3 July 2017

1and1 Cloud Virtual Server outgoing smtp email blocked

Got a new VPS hosting server with 1&1, its one of their Cloud Virtual Servers based on SSD, nice and speedy. Obscure problem with the first WordPress site which wouldn't send outgoing email using phpmail.

Went through all the firewall policy, server settings, Plesk, OS, WordPress - nothing obvious. All you can see is emails queuing in the outgoing queue in Plesk. Look under Tools & Settings > Mail > Mail Server Settings > Mail Queue.


Clicking on the email shows it received by the host.

After double-checking all the settings, again, turns out its an overriding outgoing port 25 block set by 1and1. You have to phone support and get the outgoing block taken off port 25 - it doesn't appear in the control panel(s) or the firewall policies. Good luck finding a first line tech that's heard of it too :-)

Friday, 23 June 2017

Dell Optiplex 7040 Realtek clicking popping audio sounds

Looks like the latest audio driver from Dell has fixed a sound problem where you could hear clicking and popping, sometimes interference, sounds whilst playing music or adverts. It was most obvious on Spotify. This is using the built-in Realtek Audio hardware.

Previous driver was 6.0.1.6111 dated 12 Aug 2016 and the update is 6.0.1.6117 dated 19 Dec 2016, listed as Dell revision A07. Download Audio_Driver_RT1XX_WN32_6.0.1.6117_A07.EXE 

Worth noting the Dell Command Update utility (v2.3.1) for checking if updates are available, didn't list this particular audio driver update for download. We only spotted it when manually checking the Dell support website.


(Just for completeness - we'd also loaded BIOS 1.5.10 dated 9 May 2017 at the same time, but don't think that was relevant. There was mention of a LAN driver possibly causing audio interference, this system was already on the latest Dell download 20.4 A01 with driver 12.13.17.7 dated 5 Oct 2015 for Intel l219-LM. Intel have a newer release 22.3 ProWinx64 with driver 12.15.25.6 dated 19 Mar 2017. Hyper-V and VMware virtual adapters were present)

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Draytek Vigor 2760n dial-in VPN update

Just spotted a useful firmware update from Draytek for their Vigor 2760 / 2760n / 2760Vn range which adds an important VPN feature.

In a previous article on the Draytek 2760 I mentioned that although the early revision of the hardware (which uses firmware 1.x) has dial-in VPN support (PPTP, L2TP) the later hardware revision with firmware 3.x didn't provide dial-in VPN. Got caught out by that change before!


Guess what Draytek fixed with the 3.8.2.1 firmware - they've added support for SSL VPN Remote Dial-In user connections. Excellent news - will be testing as soon as I get opportunity.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

SBS 2008 Best Practice Analyzer (SBS BPA) out of date, error ocurred trying to access the web

The Best Practice Analyzer (BPA) for Small Business Server 2008 (SBS2008) reports 'An error occurred trying to access the web' when it tries to update.


If you click on the 'About the Best Practices Analyzer' link you might see an older update than Configuration File version: 2.1.60.0






[ We had an SBS 2008 server that blue screened and had to be restored using a SystemState backup and SFC system file check - somewhere along the way we ended up with an old configuation file version of 2.1.5.0. When run, this threw up an error about WSUS 3.0 needing SP1, when SP2 was actually installed. ]

You can manually update by copying a newer SBSBPA.CONFIG.XML file into the C:\Program Files (x86)\SBSBPA\en directory. You can find a copy here; sbsbpa.config.xml version 2.1.60.0


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