Saturday, March 27, 2010

Windows MAC Address Spoofing

I'd always wondered how to do this, I figured you needed a third party utility or something.  But tonight as I was randomly wondering how one would get an Xbox 360 connected to Xbox Live through a network running a captive portal, I happened upon the method.

No third-party software required.  There's just a simple setting you can change on your network card.  The setting is kind of buried, hence why I hadn't found it on my own.

Under normal circumstances, there's no reason you'd ever need to do this.  However, for very specific uses (like connecting an Xbox 360 to Xbox Live on hotel wireless or something), it can come in handy.  It can also force your broadband ISP to give you a new IP address.
  1. Open your Control Panel and go into Network Connections.
  2. Right click on your network connection and select Properties.
  3. Near the top of the dialog that pops up you'll find a Configure button.  Click it.
  4. On the Advanced tab of the dialog that comes up, look for an option like "Network Address".  It may differ depending on what network card you have, but it should either have the word "Address" or "MAC" in it.
  5. Select that option.
  6. In the Value text box, type in the new MAC address.  MAC addresses are in hexadecimal, so use the digits 0-9 and then A-F.  If you're trying to get a console onto hotel wireless (either with its own wireless adapter or bridged via a laptop or something), you'll want to enter your console's MAC address here.  It can typically be found in your console's network configuration.

    WARNING: You will lose network connectivity after this next step.  If all goes well it'll come back immediately, but make sure you're not using the internet for anything important because it'll get interrupted.

  7. Click OK.
Now if you open up a command prompt (Start->Run, type cmd, press Enter) and type ipconfig /all, you should see the MAC address you configured.

There you go.  Don't try to hold me responsible for the repercussions of anything you do with this knowledge, because if you do I'll just laugh at you and then condescendingly dismiss you.

Monday, March 22, 2010

GH Controller Autopsy

I decided to see what exactly the issue was, so I opened it up.  See if you can see what's wrong from this photo.

If you don't see it, here it is again, this time cropped to show what's actually relevant.

See that one pad that's separated from the rubber piece?  That's it.  That pad was beneath the blue button.  When I removed the rubber piece and touched that pad, it fell out.  To make things worse, the ones that correspond to red and yellow are about to do the same.  I don't think this is easily fixable.  My initial instinct was to try and tape it back on, but due to the design of the rubber piece it would be very difficult and would still lead to errantly registering button presses.

Long story short: I need a new controller.  Only problem: No money.  Other circumstance: At this point if I do get another controller it won't be until after I obtain an Xbox 360, and I will obtain said controller with the 360 full band version of one or another GH game.  I need a console from this generation, and even though PSN is free, Xbox Live does it better.  I'll have to get used to a different star power button location and feel, but...  I'm reasonably used to the open notes and extended sustains, so I can adapt.

So, yeah.  Guitar Hero withdrawal is a bitch.  I want to play so many songs...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

What. The. Fuck.

I'm posting this here because I don't use tags on Random Bullshit and this needs one.

CAINE's only theme showing of the semester (due to ridiculous snowfall :( ) was last night.  The theme this time was "underrated anime".  Basically if there's something you like that not enough people know about, you'd bring it.  I brought L/R: Licensed By Royalty episode 5 for the occasion.

The showing was moving along fine and then we get to Alex's contribution: Cencoroll.

What.  The.  Fuck.

It made no sense.  The main character has this...  thing that can transform into basically anything.  There's another guy with another one of these...  things that can turn invisible, and then there's a fucking ginormous one atop a skyscraper that the military is trying to destroy.

The...  things eat their humans.  And each other.  To control one they have this weird black thing that sparks with electricity that comes out of their human's hair.

You know what, I'm going to stop trying to describe it.  It makes total lack of sense.  At least it wasn't as long as Tekkon Kinkreet.

Monday, March 15, 2010

X-Mouse Button Control

If you've read any of my past posts on the subject, you'll know that I'm quite annoyed at Kensington's decision to not release a Vista/Win7-compatible version of MouseWorks.  I've considered other trackballs, but quite frankly the competition (led by Logitech) doesn't have what I'm looking for.

Recently, searching around for something unrelated I found a thread on a forum somewhere about Kensington input devices and their (lack of) compatibility with newer Windows versions.  MouseWorks is, after all, the only thing keeping me on WinXP SP3, so if I could eliminate that dependency I could install Windows 7.

In that thread someone mentioned X-Mouse Button Control as a viable alternative for doing exactly what I needed MouseWorks for that Windows won't do: remapping the buttons.  They provided a link, which I followed.  The site says it's compatible with Windows 7, which is awesome.

I waited a while between downloading it and installing it because I wanted to completely ditch Kensington's software first, which requires a reboot, and I hate rebooting.  But earlier tonight I got up from UT2k4 to go take a shower and when I came back my computer was frozen, so after restarting it I immediately went into "it's okay to reboot" mode and switched over.

The install process is straightforward, accept defaults (outside of install directory there isn't really anything to change anyway) and keep clicking through and it'll automatically start up.  Look in your system tray for its icon, double click that icon to bring up the Setup window.

The setup window

Setting it up is as simple as it looks.  You can have a mapping for any program you want.  If there's no mapping for the specific program, the Default mapping is used, so set that up before you go and do anything else.  Just go through the dropdown for the button you want to configure and tell it what you want that button to do.  If you have a doubt as to which button is which, click that button and it'll highlight the appropriate dropdown.

The tabs for different layers allow you to define multiple configurations for a single program.  These layers can be switched between using the right-click menu on the tray icon.  The author intends to add support for temporarily switching between the layers with a keypress in the future, this would be awesome.  With a feature like this you could, for instance, set up your trackball to have a double click button (as I have) but when you hold Ctrl and click that button it would activate Windows 7's Flip3D feature instead.

The settings window

The Settings button brings up a window with some advanced settings where you can control the sensitivity of your mouse and some other things.  One very nice feature that I enabled as soon as I saw it is "Make scroll wheel scroll window under cursor".  I've always been annoyed at how Windows never did this, and now I can enable it for more intuitive scrolling through things.  No more having to click to focus the thing I want to scroll.  Other than that and maybe the sensitivity, the other settings are generally good left as their defaults unless you need to change them.

If "Enable global hotkeys" is checked, the settings window gets another tab (aptly named "Global Hotkeys") that allows you to configure them.  There are configurable hotkeys for switching between layers, which could come in handy if you use them.

X-Mouse Button Control is very light on resources, so you won't even have to worry about that.

One important thing to note: X-Mouse Button Control is not a driver.  It simply hooks into the mouse events and redefines them.  You'll still need a driver for your device.  Fortunately in my case my trackball works with the default driver that Windows installs when I plug it in, so I don't have an issue here.

Also good to note: With MouseWorks out of the picture, I'm no longer having to periodically re-disable "Snap mouse pointer to default button".  The option exists on the regular Windows control panel (at least in XP SP3), but it actually stays the way you set it.  So no more aggravation there.  Finally.

If you haven't gotten the full picture yet, this program isn't needed if you use a regular two or three button mouse.  It's only really useful if you have a more exotic input device with more buttons and you want to remap them without using bundled software.  It's also very handy for taking such an exotic device to newer versions of Windows where it may lack support from the manufacturer.

The verdict: Install, use, and inform others about.  Also, now I can install Windows 7.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I need a new guitar controller.

It's official, my blue button has finally sunk far enough into the controller to register on its own.  I had an extraordinarily good run on Enter Sandman where I almost FCed the solo, and then went to play Frantic and started dropping in the intro, which I never drop in.  Restarted, then noticed that blue was held down even though I wasn't pressing it.


I got through Frantic by tilting the guitar forwards in sections that had blue in them (yay gravity), but I shouldn't have to do that.

It's been a few years since I got this controller, so some wear and tear is naturally to be expected.  Unfortunately, I don't know if I can fix this problem like I did the detachable neck and the whammy bar.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

New Frozen Stuffs

While at Giant today I noticed that they'd slightly rearranged some of the frozen stuff, and noticed a few things that I hadn't seen before.  I looked at a few of them and ended up with a package of El Monterey Bean & Cheese Burritos.

They come eight to a package, a serving is one, and the cooking directions are for one.  Finally, a company with some sense.  In addition, they have microwave, oven, and deep fryer directions, so however you want to heat it short of a campfire or a Coleman grill, well, there you go.  I can tell you now that for a campfire you'd just wrap it in aluminum foil and toss it on there for 10 minutes or so.

I heated the first one up in the oven, figuring it would be the best of my available choices (we don't have a deep fryer).  The cooking time is a little long (due to a 375° cooking temperature) but it gets the job done and thankfully the directions don't tell you to flip it over partway through.  I sprayed some cooking spray on my baking sheet just to make sure it wouldn't stick, it didn't say to do this but I figured it wouldn't hurt.

The second one I had a few minutes ago, I heated it in the microwave to test that out.  They don't specify a wattage for the microwave directions (possibly the only blemish on an otherwise perfect set of directions), but the "frozen" heating time of a minute and 15 seconds worked well.  It burst open a little and was soggy, but that's to be expected from a microwave.  And of course, obeying the law of microwave burritos, it had a cold spot.

As for the taste, well, there's definitely beans.  I don't taste very much cheese.  The tortillas they use could stand to be whole grain as well, as non-whole grain tortillas have such a plain, bland taste.

Overall, they're pretty decent and come in a variety of flavors, most of which Giant doesn't carry (as usual).  They had the Chimichangas, the Beef and Bean, and the Bean and Cheese varieties.  Beef and Bean may have been a better choice, being that I can't detect any cheese in the Bean and Cheese ones.  Best of all, they claim 0g trans fat.  I haven't inspected the ingredients list to see if they're using the FDA "less than half a gram per serving can be marked as zero" loophole or not, but in a burrito I wouldn't expect there to be any partially hydrogenated oil anyway.