Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

Outlook Error: “Can’t Create file: file.xxx. Right-click the folder…..”

Posted on February 19th, 2008 |

Today I had a user run into an odd error in Outlook while trying to open an .rtf attachment. “Can’t create file: repCarrierDispatchMaster.rtf. Right-click the folder you want to create the file in, and then click Properties on the shortcut menu to check your permissions for the folder”. This was a new one for me and right away I incorrectly assumed this was due to Outlook 2003’s attachment security settings. This wasn’t the case nor was the user’s anti-virus software at fault.


What caused the problem is the way Outlook saves temporary files when opened. It saves a copy of the attachment into the hidden Outlook sub-folder of Temporary Internet Files and appends that file name with a number sequence. The problem comes up when you try to open an attachment with the same name more than 99 times as Outlook will not increment the filename any further. That’s what trips this error.

To fix the problem you first need to figure out the name of Outlook’s hidden temp folder. Outlook creates a temp folder named OLK*** where *** is a random number. Windows Explorer hides this folder even if you have “show hidden folders” turned on. To find the folder open the command line from the start menu or by typing CMD from the Run box. You will start at the local user profile path. From here type the following and press enter:

cd “Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files”

Now that you are in the temporary Internet Files it’s time to find the hidden folder.

dir *.


This will list all folders and files without attachments. In my example you can see my folder is named OLK18. You can now either open Windows Explorer and navigate to the Temp Internet Files folder and add \OLK18 (substitue with the name of your folder) and remove all the duplicate files here or stay in the command line and just change directory with the cd command to the outlook folder and run del *.* to delete all the files within the folder.


Ideally Outlook should be doing some housekeeping and keep these files cleaned up.

UPDATE 10/22/08: Using a batch file to automatically clear this folder on computer startup.

19 Comments » | Categories: Outlook, technology

Xbox 360 Arcade Games Delay

Posted on January 27th, 2008 |

The 2007 fall update for the Xbox 360 has brought some nice fixes and features yet there is still one thing that drives me crazy. I’ve got a large list of arcade titles on my console and actually play them frequently. Yet when trying to access the game I want to play I’m forced to sit through a large delay as it populates the list of games I’ve downloaded. The dashboard acts as if it’s searching either the hard drive or Live to populate this list each time it’s accessed. I don’t understand why Microsoft doesn’t just keep this information in a simple database or even a flat file on the hard drive for instant access to the list of games. Microsoft, thank you for adding native Divx and Xvid support, but can you please add some more performance tweaks to the dashboard? With the specs of this machine there is no excuse for delays in any of the dashboard screens.

No Comments » | Categories: technology, video games, xbox

Charter adds paid advertising search to invalid DNS inquiries

Posted on January 20th, 2008 |

I’m pretty quick on the keyboard but I have frequent typos as my hands slip and hit the wrong key or hit two keys instead of one. This annoying problem has led me to one of Charter’s more deceitful ways of bringing in a few extra bucks. I had accidentally typed google.comn into my URL path and instead of getting Firefox’s “Page not found” error I was presented with the following:

Charter has decided to use their DNS to redirect to their own custom search results. Not only does the listed “Sponsored Results” take up 1/3 of the page but Google isn’t even the first of their “Web Results” links. Even though it says the results are powered by Yahoo they are clearly adding their own links into the results. I just picture my Grandma trying to type in a web site address and being brought to deceptive search results like this.

Shame on you Charter. I’ll be changing my DNS provider now.

1 Comment » | Categories: technology

thesixtyone – Indie music discovery with a social twist

Posted on January 13th, 2008 |

I came across thesixtyone the other day and found it to be a pleasant way to quickly sample new music. Anyone familiar with social news voting sites such as digg will instantly recognize the familiar layout of the site.


The main page contains a listing of all the ‘hot’ songs that others have voted to the front page. You can select from the generes list on the left if you’d only like to see the popular songs from your favorite style of music. There is a play button on each song allowing you to listen to the entire song. This is not a basic sample like iTunes, it is good quality audio that starts playing right away. Once the song completes it will automatically move to the next song on the list. One of the things I found very interesting while listening to songs was the ability to navigate to other pages within the site while your current song continues to play. The Rack box on the right of the main page also gives you an option to listen to songs that have not yet hit the front page without digging through the site to find songs that have not yet hit the popular lists.

If you would like to bump a song you found on the site then registration is quite quick and you can start voting on songs. They’ve come up with a nice system based on points that allow you to bump songs you enjoy. You also now earn the ability to add songs to your personal playlist which can be played by selecting “Listen to radio” from your profile page. The profile page also allows you to display your top 3 songs, send songs to friends using the Tunebox application and also create and edit playlists. The pages are quite intuitive and the site also gives you very small popup boxes with information about the bands or information if it notices you need a hand. They have a very “VH1 Pop-up Video” feel.
Overall I’m quite impressed with this site. It’s a very quick and simple way to find new music along with a very Web 2.0 look and feel. All songs can be purchased from Amazon.com’s MP3 store which features DRM free music that is still cheaper that Apple’s locked down iTunes songs. Give it a spin, you may just find something you like.

No Comments » | Categories: music, technology, web

Outlook Error: "The messaging interface has returned an unknown error."

Posted on January 7th, 2008 |

Running into the following error in Microsoft Outlook? “The messaging interface has returned an unknown error. If the problem persists, restart Outlook.”

I’ve run into this problem several times when trying to delete documents from our Exchange server through Outlook. Microsoft has posted KB283174 but only suggests emptying your Deleted Items folder using the right click function. What is really happening here is an internal limitation in Outlook that prevents you from deleting over 2000 items at once. Select fewer objects and try deleting them again.

No Comments » | Categories: software, technology

CNN looks to be using Microsoft Surface multi-touch

Posted on January 2nd, 2008 |

Watching Anderson Cooper 360 describe the Iowa Caucuses tonight they had a rather large (possibly 72″) display that both Anderson and his guest were able to drag icons representing votes around the screen and place them in squares that represented candidates. They were each moving the votes at the same time and it didn’t look to be pre-rendered as Anderson let go of some too early and they bounced back to their original position. Could this be one of the first major Microsoft Surface deployments?

Update: A reader suggested that this is actually technology called Perceptive Pixel by Jeff Han. His website has a very impressive demo of a multi-touch interface on a screen much larger than what CNN was using. The site mentions nothing about customers, nor does CNN’s site mention Perceptive Pixel, but the video of his technology is worth watching. www.perceptivepixel.com

Update 2: Someone from Perceptive Pixel replied to my email sending me to the following website confirming that this is indeed their technology. I’m still looking for video of it in action on CNN online. If anyone comes across it please post a link in the comments.

Update 3: An anonymous reader posted two video examples of CNN using this technology on YouTube here and here.

Update 4: CNN has been calling their new toy “Magic Board”

Update 5: CNN finally has an article up talking about the technology and speak with Jeff Han, founder of Perspective Pixel. Link.

Update 6: The Daily Show did story on Magic Board and visited Jeff Han at Perspective Pixel as well as the crew at CNN.

5 Comments » | Categories: technology

How you can help clean up Digg

Posted on December 23rd, 2007 |

It’s bad enough that the national media covers all the latest dirty activities of today’s Hollywood trash but that doesn’t mean we need to put up with it on Digg as well. This is very simple and only takes a few minutes a day. Sign into Digg, go to search, select upcoming stories, sorted by date. Now simply type in one of these celeb’s names and bury a few pages worth of stories. If only a few handful of Diggers do this once a day then there is no chance of these stories getting anywhere near the front page. A few examples are provided below.

No Comments » | Categories: digg, technology