Virtual WiFi Miniport Adapter – Set your hotspot from your Windows PC directly

Connectify and Virtual Router have been around for a while, but did you know you could share your internet directly from your Windows machine as a Wifi hotspot?

From Windows 7 onwards there is this inbuilt feature, namely Virtual WiFi Miniport Adapter. You can broadcast your internet connection in access point mode and use it on any device. In this example, we will share a LAN connection on Virtual Wifi.

Open up an elevated Command Prompt or a PowerShell and issue this command:

netsh wlan set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=YourHotspotName key=YourPassword keyUsage=persistent

You have enabled your Miniport Adapter. Now issue the following command:

netsh wlan start hostednetwork

Right click on the network icon in your taskbar and open Network and Sharing center. Chose “Change Adapter Settings” on the left side. You will see a new connection with “Microsoft Hosted Network Virtual Adapter” in its description:

1

This is your Virtual Adapter (and KOSMOS-2251 is my hotspot name).

Now right click the LAN connection (the one you want to share on the Virtual Adapter) and open Properties:

2

Move onto the Sharing tab and check “Allow other users to connect through this computer’s internet connection”:

3

You will have to mention the name of your Virtual Miniport Adapter here.

Next click settings and enable all services that you want to share. That’s it, you can use the internet on your hotspot from any Wifi enabled device around!

To stop the Wifi connection, issue:

netsh wlan stop hostednetwork

Enjoy.

Setting up an Android Development Environment using Eclipse IDE

As you read this, you are most likely to be tapping on a smartphone screen. In this era of smartphones, Android development is one of the most demanded skills out there.

First off, we will stick to Eclipse. We will first set up a generic Java development environment, followed by the necessary tools on top of it for Android programming functionality.

Before doing any installation, fetch all the necessary tools to your hard drive. Here’s a list of what you need:

  1. Eclipse IDE for Java Developers
    Download from: http://www.eclipse.org/downloads
  2. Java Development Kit (JDK), contains libraries for Java development
    Download from: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/downloads/index.html
  3. Android SDK tools (contains the Platform and Build tools)
    Download from:
    http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html#ExistingIDE ; click “USE AN EXISTING IDE” > “Download the SDK Tools for Windows”.
  4. Android Development Tools (contains libraries for Android development; it is dependent on JDK)
    Download from: http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing/installing-adt.html, scroll to the bottom of the page, “Troubleshooting ADT Installation” section.

requirements

 

  1. First off, install JDK.
  2. After JDK installation, go to your Computer properties. On Windows 7, 8 and 8.1, right click on Computer/This PC, click Properties and then in the window that appears, click “Advanced system settings” in the left pane.
    Settings
  3. Go to the “Advanced” tab in the window that appears, and click the “Environment Variables…” button towards the bottom.
  4. Add a new variable in the “User Variables” section, with the name JAVA_HOME, and the value should be the address that points to your JDK installation:
    Uservars
  5. Do not close the window. In the System variables section, find the “Path” variable, and click Edit:Path
  6. At the end, append the path to your JRE installation (include the semicolon in the beginning and the /bin at the end).
  7. Save your configuration; extract Eclipse in a directory such as C:\ and create a shortcut for eclipse.exe on your desktop.
  8. At this point, your Eclipse has been set up for Java development. Move onto the next steps for Android development.
  9. Once the installation completes, the installer offers to start the Android SDK Manager. DO NOT start the Android SDK Manager.
  10. Install the ADT plugin in your Eclipse installation. There are two ways to do this. Either install it from the online repository, or download it first, and install it as an archive. I recommend installing it directly from the repository, because even if you are installing it from the archive, a lot of dependencies have to be downloaded from the internet during install. To install it directly from the online repository,
    1. Start Eclipse, then select Help > Install New Software.
    2. Click Add, in the top-right corner.
    3. In the Add Repository dialog that appears, enter the following URL for the Location:
      https://dl-ssl.google.com/android/eclipse/
    4. Click OK and follow the steps to complete the installation (you will need to accept the license agreement).
    5. If you downloaded ADT as an archive, follow the method here:
      http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing/installing-adt.html
  11. Fire up Eclipse. You will get a warning that the Platform tools and Build tools are absent.
    SDKNotPresent
  12. The required tools will be checked by default, just click the “install packages” button. (Do not compare your selected packages with mine, since the screenshot was taken during the installation, when some packages had already been installed).
    PackageList
  13. 13. If you get an error, close SDK tools, and run it from the Start Menu or the Start Screen in elevated (administrator) mode by right clicking on it.
  14. Wait for the installation to finish:
    InstallProgress
  15. Once it’s done, congratulations. Your computer is all set for Android programming. Fire up Eclipse to create a new project straight away.

Happy coding!

Installing FreeBSD 9.1 in Virtual Box, and setting up a graphical desktop

Hello guys, it’s been a while since I last posted up a tutorial so here we go. I hope you have a downloaded FreeBSD 9.1 Release ISO and Virtual Box up and running. If you haven’t installed Virtual Box yet, do install it now, and install ALL components (networking, USB support, etc).

Create a new Virtual Machine in Virtual Box. I recommend 10 GB of a FIXED storage volume and 512 MB RAM.

1

Before we start, open the settings for this machine, and check Enable IO APIC option. Basically, what we need to enable is HPEC (high precision event timers). Without those, FreeBSD would not boot. Enabling this option will enable HPEC.

2

Start the machine. You will be asked to locate the drive to boot from

3

Locate the FreeBSD ISO.

4

Boot (make sure ACPI is enabled, other wise enable it using the ‘4’ or ‘A’ key.

5

When the kernel has booted, start the “Install”.

6

The steps are self explanatory. In the following, select ALL distributions. You will need src (the system source code) because in FreeBSD 9.1, there are no packages unfortunately. All has to be pulled off the online repository or compiled from source

7

In the partitioning, use GUIDED mode because it will create all three standard FreeBSD partitions on its own.

8

If you choose to do it manually though, remember the freebsd-boot partition should be no larger than 512 KB. freebsd-swap should be the size of the RAM, and devote the rest to the freebsd-ufs (with / as the mount point). The boot partition must be the first one.

9

After that, commit to the installation. You don’t have to worry about the warnings since this is a virtual machine.

10

After the install, do not configure the em0 interface at this point. Do not add users at this point either. A lot of work has to be done as root. You can add users later. Just Exit the installer and reboot.

11

If the machine reboots into the ISO image again, you will need to power off this machine after reboot. Use Machine > ACPI Shutdown. Then go to machine settings and in the storage tab, select the FreeBSD ISO. Remove it from the virtual drive as shown in the pic.

12

And then start the machine.

Log in as root and the password you set during install. The first thing you should do is to connect to the internet via NAT (Network Address Translator) of Virtual Box. NAT configures itself automatically. Make sure the host OS is online. Then issue this command:

# dhclient em0

Then since Google is always on,

# ping google.com

I deliberately used this syntax because most users don’t know how to exit from the ping command. Well, here you go, press CTRL + C to exit from ping when it has transmitted/received a few packets. CTRL + C will exit most commands.

Let’s move on and install X11.

# cd /usr/ports/x11/xorg
# make install clean

You are compiling from source. It may take a while. The dependencies will be downloaded from the internet also.

Alternatively you can run

# pkg_add -r xorg

To download precompiled packages directly and install them instead.

Once it is installed, I’d recommend you install nano text editor because we will need to edit a lot of files. The default editor, vi, is more fun to use but a bit complicated.

# pkg_add -r nano

Let’s move on to configure X11.

You need to edit /etc/rc.conf and place the following lines at the end:

hald_enable="YES"
dbus_enable="YES"

This is because Xorg uses HAL to autodetect mice and keyboards. That’s it, fire up X.

# startx

You will see TWM, the default X11 window manager. Then run this command to create a skeleton configuration file in /root

# Xorg -configure

Now test if Xorg is working on your hardware.

# Xorg -config xorg.conf.new -retro

If a black and grey grid and an X mouse cursor appear, the configuration was successful. To exit the test, switch to the virtual console used to start it by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Fn (F1 for the first virtual console) and press Ctrl+C.

Install the URW font collection (the default fonts shipped with X11 are less than ideal).

# cd /usr/ports/x11-fonts/urwfonts
# make install clean

Now make the X server detect these fonts. The following commands should be run in a shell in an X session:

% xset fp+ /usr/local/lib/X11/fonts/URW
% xset fp rehash

Last thing for today, install GNOME:

# pkg_add -r gnome2

or

# cd /usr/ports/x11/gnome2
# make install clean

Once that is done, add the following lines to /etc/rc.conf to make GDM start automatically at boot:

gdm_enable="YES"
gnome_enable="YES"

That’s it. Reboot and you will be greeted with a graphical login screen. Enjoy your FreeBSD experience!

How to update Iceweasel/Icedove on Debian

So after switching to Debian, I have realized that the only drawback this OS contains is the rebranding of Firefox and Thunderbird to Iceweasel and Iceape respectively. Because of this, they have been detached from the main release cycle of Firefox and Thunderbird and are not always up to date.

The latest release of Debian (Squeeze) still contains Iceweasel 3.x which is pretty old. Using the following procedure, I was able to update it to Iceweasel 10 which is way better. You may also be able to install 13 from source.

1. Add the following lines to the end of /etc/apt/sources.list

deb http://backports.debian.org/debian-backports squeeze-backports main
deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ squeeze-backports iceweasel-aurora iceweasel-beta iceweasel-release iceweasel-esr icedove-esr iceape-esr

2. Next, update apt:

sudo apt-get update

3. Next, issue this command to upgrade to the latest stable Iceweasel in the Debian Backports repo (which at time of writing this post was 10):

sudo aptitude install -t squeeze-backports iceweasel

Congrats, you have successfully upgraded your Iceweasel! Enjoy Debian. You can use the same process for Icedove, just replace iceweasel with icedove in step 3.

Debian 6.0.5 Review/Screenshots

I have finally made the switch to Debian 6.0.5. There were multiple reasons for this shift. It is the parent distro of Ubuntu, the OS that I love the most. Secondly, it is a very robust system and has proven its reliability in many fields, even the aerospace industry. Unlike Ubuntu, which is limited to Desktops, Laptops and Servers, Debian also supports all kinds of weird platforms, like mobile phones, even though the official documentation for that is not very comprehensive at the moment.

Debian is massive. But you only need the first CD (or first DVD) to install it. The others are basically bundled repositories. However, I recommend going for either the first DVD or the live USB. The first CD does not have network manager, which is a huge pain.

Package management on Debian is going to be easy, with aptitude. The process is not much different from Ubuntu.

I chose to download the first DVD, since I have a fast broadband.

Install/First Run

Installation was really easy. Debian still uses GNOME 2. A BIG BIG plus in my book. If you have been subscribed to my blog, you must have noticed that I don’t like GNOME 3. The cloud type interface has taken away the spirit of Linux. I love Linux because I am geeky, and those new desktops like Unity and GNOME 3 have not been able to impress me.

Fonts

Clear fonts. I didn’t have to change anything. Looks beautiful as anything.

Stability

So far, NO crash at all. An extremely stable operating system. After all, it is the parent OS of Ubuntu.

Applications

Software Management is similar to Ubuntu, so no comments needed. It is superb.

Overall rating: 10/10 from my side. The best distro I have tried ever.

  

  

  

  

  

reduction to the absurd

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