Month: January 2010

Targus Universal Power Adapters – Beware!

A few people coming in for laptop power jack repairs have also brought in the universal power adapters they use as a replacement for the original AC adapter that came with the laptop, which they lost. From what we’ve seen Targus dominates the universal power adapter market with this. From what we’ve seen the adapters themselves work alright (though there are reports of overheating around the internet). The main problem we’ve seen is that there are a wide variety of tips available, and several tips may work to power one laptop model even if they don’t fit properly. It usually goes like this: the user buys a new universal power […]

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Recovering Lotus WordPro Files (In Russian!)

A customer recently came into the shop with some Lotus Wordpro documents that she had recovered from her old laptop. They contained a dissertation that was written almost a decade ago that had to be revisted… the kicker was that the files were written in Russian, and opening them with a text editor revealed page after page of UNICODE Gibberish. Opening the old files was simple enough. There is a free program out there called Lotus KeyView that allows you to open (but not edit) .lwp files. We were easily able to copy and paste the text that Kevview presented to us, but it was certainly not encoded properly. After […]

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iPhone Repair: Combine parts from two broken iPhones to make one working iPhone

Today is a good day. Last Friday was a bad day. My dog took it upon himself to vomit all over the console of my car, which happened to be where I had parked my iPhone. It was sideways, partially submerged in about an inch of dog vomit for about 20 minutes, and was unresponsive. This video was awesome at explaining the suction cup method for opening and iPhone, which works like a charm. You remove the two screws at the bottom, apply a 2″ suction cup to the face, and pull gently back revealing… iPhone innards and dog puke residue. I let the components dry a little bit more, […]

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Windows Deployment Services

Doing clean installations the old fashioned way can take over 2 hours, and that’s assuming you are sitting there, eagerly waiting to press the “OK” and “Next” buttons on the dozens of command prompts you will be faced with. Once Windows is installed, the updates can take an obscenely long time to download and install. (As of the time of this post, a clean installation of Windows XP Pro Service Pack 3 requires an additional 65 updates after installation!) We’ve explored several alternatives to doing clean installs without CDs, including several flavors of “no-touch” install gizmos, USB installers, slipstreaming, drive cloning and more, but none come close to the ease […]

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