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Mounting separate sets of AWS S3 CloudDrive disks for separate users on EC2 Win2016

CloudBerry Labs CloudDrive licensed on a Windows server might seem expensive, but it depends on how large the disks are that you need, how frequently you need to access the files, how large the files are, and how complex the privacy/security issues are between users. 

This idea might help someone who is trying to share an AWS EC2 machine with a friend or two in other time zones. 

The easy alternative is to spend the money and mount AWS volumes, but if you have ruled that out, CloudBerry Drive is an interesting fixed-price option as long as you do not require Windows case-insensitive file names.

However, as of now (December 2017), there is no way to use the CloudDrive GUI to have separate drives mounted for separate users, and hidden for the other users.  Right now, as each user logs in using Remote Desktop, yes they get their own Desktop, but they can see all CloudDrive network disks that have been mounted. 

One way around this is to use the command line to mount the drives from a BAT fil…
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Medium IE Security through Group Policy for QuickBooks 2018 Desktop on Windows 2016 Server on AWS EC2

Regarding error message, "Internet Security Levels Are Set Too High," in QuickBooks Desktop 2018, running on Win Server 2018 on AWS EC2, how can IE be made compatible?

[ Intuit erased my 25-Nov-2017 post on their forum. Thanks to google cache, I am reposting my original question plus a summary of my resolution here ]

The advice on does not help.

On my system, the IE feature for changing the security level to "Medium" is greyed out - disabled - not available for use.

I have TLS 1.2 checked under Advanced Security in the IE Options.  I have added https://* and https://* to the list of Trusted Sites

Unfortunately for its own help pages, QB wants to display content from intu-help-qb11://  and there is no obvious way to add that address to the list of trusted sites in IE because the prefix is not recognized as a valid protocol.

Please note that this error happens when connected over Remote Desktop rega…

CentOS Scrub Example: wipe files off usb disks, clearing free space

Alert: the syntax on this page is for a particular usb disk plugged into a CentOS server.  You will need to edit the paths very carefully to avoid erasing the wrong data on your system !

Scrub Manual Page

Note: if you tried option -p and got the "wrong type of file" error, like this,

# scrub -p dod /media/OldDisk1
scrub: using DoD 5220.22-M patterns
scrub: /media/OldDisk1 is wrong type of file

then you should have a look at the -X syntax option because that lets you scrub the freespace under a directory.  The way to use it is to specify a directory name that does NOT EXIST, and then it will create that, scrub it and erase it.

My entire sequence, including mounting the usb disk, finding my path for my usb data on the old disk via lsblk, scrubbing and then unmounting, was:

# mkdir /media/OldDisk1

# lsblk

# mount /dev/sdb1  /media/OldDisk1  

# scrub -X -p dod -S /media/OldDisk1/a
scrub: using DoD 5220.22-M patterns scrub: created directory /media/OldDisk1/a scrub: scrubbing /media/OldDisk1/a…

How to Configure TP-Link TL-MR3020 pocket router with custom subnet from cat-5 wired input

I have been a fan of the TP-Link nano routers since first seeing a tiny one for sale on a shelf in an electronics superstore in Singapore.  

This is the third one I have used, purchased in November 2017:

Model TP-MR3020

This new model has way more features ..... and took much longer to configure due to the plethora of FAQ pages without any simple overview and explanation.  ( i.e. the older models were much easier but less powerful )

So this is what I figured out about the model MR-3020.

The hardware switch has 3 modes.  The names of the modes are mildly related to what the mode offers, but one should not ignore a mode just because its name seems incorrect!  Each mode leads to a different set of configuration choices.  In my case, I wanted the input from the wired cat-5 ethernet cable and I wanted "output" of a wireless LAN with a custom subnet, example 192.168.15.x.   This worked using the mode with label "3G/4G" even though I did not plug anything into the 3g port.  !!…

Batch Convert Slides from TIF to JPG then rename files

I have been using a free utility, TIFF to JPG, to convert digital slides scanned by an Epson 850 scanner using SilverFast software.  

The utility does local batch conversions, offline.  The utility is fast, easy to use, and it lives here on

The only problem with the conversion, for me, is that the JPG filenames all have a trailing '0' added to the name. 

Here is the PowerShell with the regex required to fix this particular file naming issue after the conversion runs.

CD D:\xfer\JPEG

Get-ChildItem -Filter "*0.jpg" -Recurse | Rename-Item -NewName {$ -replace '0.jpg','.jpg' }

Credit for the PowerShell idea: TechNet

IIS in Windows 10 VirtualBox guest has VirtualPath on Ubuntu 16.04 VirtualBox host

"Connect as"... lets IIS in VirtualBox Guest deliver files from a ZFS disk on Ubuntu 16.04 VirtualBox host

( artwork credit to Theo Junior )

This is the system:

Host Operating System: Ubuntu 16.04 LTS
VirtualBox is installed on this host.

Guest Operating System: Windows 10 Pro
Microsoft IIS is running in this guest.
Drive C: with \Windows is a .VDI VirtualBox drive.  IIS is happy to serve any files from a regular .VDI or .VDMK disk.

However 500GB+ project files are stored by Ubuntu on a ZFS disk (in case-insensitive mode by the way).  These files are available on both systems in various ways for different purposes.  

For editing purposes, a VirtualBox shared folder surfaces the project files as Drive D: but those files are not available for use by the part of IIS that serves up files over http.  (They can be seen by IIS Manager because of the way VirtualBox Guest Additions works, but not at the time the worker process needs to get them.)  

For http server purposes, an Ubuntu Network S…

Solved: low-graphics mode on Ubuntu 16.04 with amdgpu-pro on Dell Precision 7510

Problem: stuck in the well-documented loop with error message "The system is running in low-graphics mode" on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS on a bare metal Dell laptop.

This started for me when my Ubuntu 16.04 system froze.  After restart, I tried to install system updates via the "Ubuntu Software" GUI.  That seemed to hang at roughly 50% complete, and I rebooted at that point.  Thereafter I could not get out of the low-graphics-mode situation for many hours because I could not find anyone with exactly the same problem.

The common tip about getting into the alternate terminal window was critical.

Ctrl + Alt  + F1

There are many posts about the low-graphics mode error from people with nvidia cards.  I eventually found the syntax to check which video card was in my system and it was not nvidia.  It was an AMD graphics card which Dell sold me in 2016 as an option on a Dell Precision 7510 laptop.

lshw -c video

product: Venus XTX [Radeon HD 8890M / R9 M275X/M375X]
       vendor: Advanced M…