Create an ODBC using a reg edit file

With thanks to:

Save following as a file e.g. MyODBCName.reg
Double-click to install into the registry

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

"MyODBCName"="SQL Server Native Client 11.0"



How to keep the task bar visible when using a maximised RDP client

I use RDP a lot now, but would like to be able to see my own PC’s task bar, for instance Outlook may show messages.
It is possible, with thanks to:


  1. Edit your .RDP file using Remote Desktop Client, making sure the “Display” tab is configured for “Full Screen”, and then “Save” the .RDP file again (this bakes your local resolution into the file, which is important)
  2. Edit the .rdp in notepad:
    1. screen mode id:i:2  – change this line to the following, to use windowed mode instead of fullscreen
      screen mode id:i:1
    2. Add this line to the file if it doesn’t exist already:
      smart sizing:i:1
    3. Change nothing about (but take notice of) two lines that talk about “desktopwidth” and “desktopheight”
  3. Save and close the .RDP file



Device and Resource Redirection

Audio redirection

  1. Run
  2. Type “group” to open Edit group policy
  3. Local computer policy
  4. Computer configuration
  5. Administrative Templates
  6. Windows Components
  7. Remote Desktop Services
  8. Remote Desktop Session Host
  9. Device and Resource Redirection
  10. Allow Audio and video playback redirection
  11. Change from Not Configured to Enabled.




How to reinstate Contact Linking in Outlook 2013

For Outlook 2007 and 2010 there is an Option > Contacts > Linking > Show contacts linked to the current item

This has been removed in Outlook 2013, apparently because they have a new feature of Links when you are on People and the current view is People and then look at details. I don’t use that but and tend to use the List view which does not have the links. Also I have historic links, so wanted to reinstate links. Thanks to:

Which I found via

So steps copied from first of these are:

  1. Regedit
  2. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\15.0\Outlook\Preferences
  3. Add DWORD: ShowContactFieldObsolete
  4. Set to 1

That page also referred to a Group Policy registry setting. I did not have that on my machine, did not create it and found that the links were there anyway

To remove:

Set to 0, or remove the Key



MS Word 2013 ActiveDocument.MailMerge.OpenDataSource not available for reading on opening a document

A new PC has MS Office 2013 when the system still uses Office 2003 templates and vba code.


Don’t have actual text to hand, but something like:

“MailMerge.OpenDataSource is not available for reading”



Programmatically change the view on open:

Private Sub Document_Open()
Me.ActiveWindow.View.Type = wdNormalView
End Sub


Found solution on web. Following was not the page, but similar




Office upload center upload failed permission issue


Sometimes Office upload centre just stops working.

Sometimes with failed permission, sometimes with

“OneDrive for Business found a problem while accessing the Microsoft Office Document Cache and needs to repair it before it can continue.
As part of the repair a copy of the cache will be saved as a backup and a new cache will be created.”

See also: on time 5/14/2014 10:58 PM

If required then:

  1. Stop syncing
  2. Rename folder as backup in case you lose files
  3. Stop related services in Task Manager Resources, including Groove, MSOSync or similar
  4. Clear cache to “C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Office\Spw” and delete all the content. You will see that this is all related to groove, and spw equals SharePoint Workspace.Go to “C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Office\15.0\OfficeFileCache” and also delete all content from this folder. This is where all the caching from your files are stored.
    Note : Just try to delete all, if one or two items cannot be deleted, that’s OK.
  5. Sync again
    It may or may not allow you to choose a location



How to enable Azure VM IIS hosted website public access

  1. Setup IIS
  2. Confirm able to browse default website locally
  3. Azure Management Portal
  4. Select Virtual Machine
  5. Endpoints
  6. Add HTTP
  7. Confirm able to access the default site from a public web browser
  8. Optionally add FTP, HTTPS ( use for SSL )

Find and remove adware on Internet Explorer

Started getting adware underlined hyperlinks on IE today. This directs you to and then on to a web advert

With thanks to

Found in services and msconfig and disabled in both

  1. In RegEdit.exe delete following folder
  2. In Explorer
    %program files (x86)% delete folder Rr Savings
  3. In Explorer
    %program files% delete folder RrFilter
  4. Also in IE > Tools > Manage Add-ons
    Disable Adpeak – RrSavings
    Also More Information – Took a screen shot and noted the ClassID
  5. Searched for the ClassID in RegEdit and deleted it from a few 2-3 places


Azure Virtual Machines adding virtual hard disks VHD

See also Azure Powershell and Azure VM with SQL

If you have a Pluralsight subscription then they have a good course “Windows Azure Infrastructure as a Service Essentials” then chapter “Storage and Disks” and screen cast “Creating Virtual Hard Disks”

First create a local VHD

  1. Start – “Create and format hard disk partitions”
  2. Action Create VHD
  3. Set location, size, fixed size, OK
  4. Right-click on newly created disk and Initialise
  5. Think MBR – OK
  6. Detach VHD

Upload local VHD to Azure Storage using Azure Powershell

  1. Ensure that you can run local scripts, see Azure Powershell post
  2. Run script:
    add-azurevhd -destination http://<address&gt;<container>/<blobname>.vhd -LocalFilePath :\vhds\VHD01.vhd

Set as Virtual Machines Disk

  1.  Azure management portal
  2. Virtual machines
  3. Disks
  4. Create, enter name, pick from storage, OK

Attach to the Virtual Machine

  1. Azure management portal
  2. Virtual machines
  3. Select machine
  4. Dashboard
  5. Attach – Attach disk
  6. Read/Write
  7. Tick, OK






Azure Virtual Machines – with SQL Server

Setting up a VM for SQL Server Web Edition

  1. Created my first virtual machine with SQL Server Web edition on it.
  2. Added a windows user. Added the equivalent SQL Server windows user.
  3. Checked could login to SQL Server OK
  4. Used sysprep as a starting point
  5. Then took an image.
  6. Then created a new virtual machine from that image
  7. Logged in to new VM ok – but error on logging in to SQL Server.
  8. Then after a weekend the error had changed to “A connection was successfully established with the server, but then an error occurred during the login process (provider: Shared Memory Provider: 0 – No process is on the other end of the pipe)(Microsoft SQL Server, Error: 233)
  9. This was because SQL Server Agent was not running – started it
  10. In fact in SQL Server Configuration SQL Server Agent and Browser had to be changed to automatic startup
  11. Then back to original error

Error Login failed for user (Microsoft SQL Server Error 18456) on VM with SQL Server

  1. It seems that the user who created the SQL login on the first machine is not the same as the user who created the new machine after the sysprep
  2. So destroyed the machine and started again.
  3. New strategy – put SQL Server into Mixed Authentication Mode
  4. Create a SQL Server Login
  5. Give that login sysadmin
  6. Create the image.
  7. Create the VM from the image.
  8. Confirm that the Windows logins do not work for SQL Server
  9. Login as that SQL Server login admin created before, rather than the Windows Authentication only.
  10. Then script to drop and create the windows logins
  11. Issue resolved

Mixed Authentication Mode is required if logging into the SQL Server from another machine in any case.

So if creating a new VM from the image then start from step 7 above


Error: Login failed for remote SQL server



In the VM > Network and Sharing Center > View your active networks

The network had been set to private – reset to public and it now works again



How to setup a Virtual Machine for connection to SQL Server from another Machine