Archive for the ‘Informational’ Category

How to recursively remove text from hacked PHP files; or Reading the Man pages, being a man, and not dancing around the question

June 7th, 2013

So you login to your website only to find OMG WE’VE BEEN HAXX0RED!@#!@! Which quite frankly sucks.   It could be any number of issues, but let’s say you suffer from the condition where someone has inserted some encrypted block of txt at the top of each PHP file to execute when you launch the files.

You can fix it, one by one but that’s annoying as all hell and lengthy… going into vi for each file, deleting the first line, rinse, repeat, AHHHH!!!!

So you search the internet with various phrases like “remove text from php file” “how to strip txt out of files” “recursively fix hacked php worpress” I mean the list can and DOES go on, but the point is you end up on Forums and blogs where people are like LET ME SHOW YOU HOW IT’S DONE, resulting in them basically telling you to read the Man Pages.  Hey douche-bag, be a MAN and tell me exactly what I need to do.  The time to ‘learn’ how to do it is all fine and dandy for AFTER I have the problem resolved!   It’d be like going to the Mechanic to get your car fixed and having him laugh at you for not knowing what is wrong, and not fixing it until you can explain how you’d fix it yourself.  Guess what, you’re a dick and this is not a time for a learning lesson!

This is a time for a learning lesson!

If you happen to find yourself in the position to needing to ‘strip’ an arbitrary string of information from one or more files, here’s a way to do it, with an explanation of what each line of this means!

find . -type f -print0 | xargs -0 sed -i ‘s/.*zend.*//g’ *.php

So, some of you may be wondering, “Well, crap that works! I fixed it! but what does it mean and how do I use this to my benefit in the future?!” Here is a breakdown of the syntax and some alternative selections you can choose, and I’ll be explaining it in ‘reverse’ because that’s sort of how it is executing.

sed -i ‘s/.*zend.*//g’ *.php

    sed is a stream editor which with the –i flag is telling the system to edit files “in place” saving out to the original file as opposed to saving to another file name or type. You’ll notice that it calls “’s/” which is to “substitute” the contents of the following which is a search string, in this case *zend.* and what follows the “/g’” helps you choose what to replace the contents with, and in this case, the content will be nothing, e.g. truncate the line.

And lastly the “*.php” at the end specifies on what file types we want to perform this command against.  We could easily choose “*.htm” or even “*”

xargs –0

     What exactly does this mean? Well, this tells the system to expect a ‘null’ character, this is often used in accord with find and –print0 as below

find . –type f –print0

   What is going on here, is the system is going ‘find’ based upon the parameters we specified in the other areas (e.g. *.php) initiating at the current directory of “.”   But then what we get is “-type f” basically tells the system to indicate that a host has been identified as having that ‘string’ of text to replace, and “-print0” will then print out what the “filename” was.

How this basically sums up is the system starting at a base directory starts searching through all subdirectories looking for files which have a certain string of text in them.  When it finds that string of text the print0 will tell xargs to print the name of the file which HAD the string of text.  With the filename identified then sed will step in an execute the ‘replacement’ of the string of text, which in this case basically deletes it.   It continues searching through the directory structure until it has exhausted the criteria of finding .php files which have the data in mind.

Now, you’re not limited to using ‘sed’ for this, you could just as easily run with using “grep –Ev” to find and replace the string of text for you, it really comes down to what you’re comfortable with and how you want to cut it.

Hopefully the lesson here is… Here is a solution to a problem that some of you WILL suffer from in your life and hell, I can go back to use this script again in the event that one of my sites I manage gets screwed up again.    Respectively with a little effort you can use this to find and replace text in files in your environment, say modifying host files en-masse or changing DNS in resolv.conf throughout your environment… Whatever floats your boat!

Special thanks to my twitter friends who tossed out VARIOUS ways to do this!   @Fr3d_org @davidchapa @cody_bunch

Hopefully you found this useful, I sure as hell did!

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Posted in Blog, Education, Friends, Informational, Social Media, tools, Twitter | Comments (0)

Free Training, Labs, Videos and more from Microsoft, VMware and @TrainSignal!

January 28th, 2013

From 2001 until 2006 I would regularly do presentations on OMG THERE’S FREE TRAINING OUT THERE WHY AREN’T YOU USING IT. Which even culminated in the release of a Technical Offerings training deck as noted in this blog post I published in 2006 (Yes, Seriously, in 2006) Well, guess what. A lot of that data is STILL highly relevant even today! So… Let’s get started! :)

Training Videos

Microsoft

Kicking off the realm of training videos I’d like to highlight our good friends at Microsoft with their release of the Microsoft Virtual Academy!

Microsoft Virtual Academy - Learn about Windows 8

The MVA has a LOAD and I mean a serious LOAD of information, from Training Videos, Courses, Tutorials, Walkthroughs, even Tests and points and contests to increase not only the ‘fun factor’ but provide additional context in your education.   For those of you VMwarriors out there who will discard this and say BLAH, SHOW ME THE VMware STUFF.   I even did a little search for VMware in the “Quick Search” button and lo and behold lookie at the results!

Microsoft gets serious with VMware Virtualization solutions in Microsoft Virtual Academy 

So whether you are a rockstar, a seasoned professional or someone looking to get started and want to know where to get some good and valuable information without spending hours and $$$ in a classroom, this is definitely an excellent way to get started, so jump on in!

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE FROM MICROSOFT?!?!

I know some of you are fighting the constant battle of “Damnit, can I attend Microsoft TechEd or not…” And with TechEd 2013 going to be in New Orleans I cannot blame you in the LEAST! But for those of you who just truly cannot find the time, the ability and are able to get away… something you should know.

ALL MICROSOFT TECHED CONTENT IS AVAILABLE FREE WHETHER YOU ATTEND OR NOT.

Yea. Seriously. It is.  It actually has been for like the last… Oh I don’t know… since 2004 I believe? And all of that past-content since they started posting and making it available online has been posted online.   For some reason I’m only able to find the 2012 content and the 2011 Archive but who really needs access to material on product versions which may not even exist or are supported anymore, if you truly need that let me know and I’ll find the link!

The Microsoft TechEd 2012 Content Catalog (and prior) are freeeeeeee!

TrainSignal

A lot of you are familiar with TrainSignal and the loads of great content they create, produce and respectively sell out there (You can get access to their paid training video series and content on their website, Trainsignal.com)  But when I reached out to their President asking, “Hey, you have any freeeeeee stuff!?!?!?” He pointed me over by here!  So here is a whole bunch of videos freeeeeeeeeeeee of charge!  And of course, don’t hesitate to check out the amazing content produced by the likes of Scott Lowe and David Davis and others!

OMG TrainSignal does Free Training Videos too?! Available on Youtube? Booyah!

Ya know… as an example here! :)

That should get you going on quite a load of stuff from Microsoft, to VMware, to Citrix and Cisco and beyond!   But let’s drill down a bit into VMware now…

VMware

When it comes to VMware there are loads and loads (and loads) of information in the world, and often we never really know where to start… Well, here is a place to start and it’s home is in YouTube!

OMG VMware has a LOT of Channels on YouTube!

Yea, that’s lame right? I mean on YouTube there’s like a dozen channels?!?! Well, there are. Just go and use them. BAM, and BOOYAH.

VMworld Presentations are FREE TOO LIKE TECHED?!?!?

Well, no. Not exactly. Sorry!   Although this last year VMUG Advantage did have a brief offer for free access to the VMworld content if you signed up for that…  I’m unable to find any data on it at the moment, so that may have expired, but it’s still worth checking out!

SHOW ME THE LABS BABY!

You asked for Labs and here they are! More labs than you can shake a stick at!

This picture 'borrowed' from http://wildlifeinthewoods.blogspot.com !

Err, okay, maybe that was a little too literal!   Let’s get on with our labs though!

FREE Hands On Labs from Microsoft!

The thing about Microsoft is… for 8+ years they’ve had FREE access to all of their products in a Try-Before-You-Buy model where you can DOWNLOAD any Product and play with it (okay, seriously that’s been around for going on 20 years) but they also instituted the Hands On Labs where the lab environments would BUILD themselves, provide you with a Lab guide to follow (or ignore) and learn and play with it that way.   Not to mention all of the content they’d have in the Hands on Labs at TechEd would be POSTED and made available for you to go in and learn, explore and beyond!

This isn’t something new, it’s been around FOREVER, Here are links to where you can access it (as it’s actually available in several places).

Disclaimer: When I wanted to test something out, I’d spin up a lab which was designed to ‘best practice’ and go in and do whatever I wanted, I mean it was a lab environment available in minutes. Why not? 

Interesting Fact, some of the types of labs and solutions available out there which you can play and learn from:

  • How to setup a product from scratch, like Sharepoint, Microsoft Exchange, SQL
  • How to MIGRATE a product from one version to another (like those products mentioned above and more)
  • How to Develop in a language like C#, Visual Studio, Azure, PowerShell and more
  • How to do other advanced types of things
  • Alllllllllllll the labs that were available at TechEd, so you know what that means… and if not, check it out!
  • You can find TechEd Labs in the Additional Content section here with this Microsoft TechEd Virtual Labs flask icon next to it!
  • Here at the MSEvents site there are a number of Virtual Labs on the “Virtual Labs” tab to choose and play from!
  • At the TechNet Virtual Labs site you can dive a little deeper on more Microsoft Technologies…
  • Looking to dive even deeper, the MSDN Virtual Labs site will take you there.

So if for a minute you thought this was going to be easy, or a single click site with all the answers. HAH.

FREE HANDS ON LABS FROM VMware?!??!

Well, not exactly.. I mean, sort of, kind of… but, well, let me explain.   VMware recently announced “Project Nee” my dear friend Simon Seagrave talks about about it here at his blog.  But ultimately, what Project Nee is intended to be is… VMware Hands On Labs publicly available online.  However it is still in Beta at the moment.   You can follow details of the VMware Hands On Labs by going here to the VMware Hands On Labs community!

 

Some additional places not even mentioned but you should check out, and all of the cited links for easy access and consumption:

 

So hopefully those of you out there who are looking to stay relevant, continue educating yourselves, maybe even heading down the certification track and whatnot will find this of benefit.   I won’t lie to you, I’ve used these resources countless times over the years and I encourage others to.   If you have any other sites to suggest, toss em into the comment section… This is an epic resources to reference from here until well.. until I write another one ;)

Educate and Enjoy!

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Posted in .NET, Careers, Certification, Cloud, Education, Evangelist, Exchange, Free, Hyper-V, Informational, Licensing, MCT, Microsoft, Sharepoint, SQL, TechEd, Technology, Virtualization, vmware, VMworld, Windows Server | Comments (6)

Happy Virtual Holidays; Best Practices for Virtualizing Mission Critical Applications, Storage and Hyper-V!

December 13th, 2012

Hey everyone out there!   I hope this finds you well and your holidays are off to a festive start.   I find no better gift to you within the community than the motherlode and brainshare of information I’ve collected, assumed, and delivered throughout the years and even a rare ‘sighting’ of my own delivery of said material in case there is ever anything you’re wondering about the what, the where and so forth!

A little bit about this source material; The emphasis and focus on this is intended to be around virtualizing Exchange and SQL.   And while some of you hardcore VMware zealots expect me to only discuss VMware it does take into heavy consideration and discuss the materials at hand on how to go about addressing this within the body  of work that is Microsoft Hyper-V as well – So happy holidays to all virtualization! :)

To start I’d like to focus on my most recent delivery of this presentation material for our good friends at Windows IT Pro, Power IT Pro, and more specifically the instance of the discussion was with VM Tech Pro!

VMtech Pro - Virtualization Strategies - Putting VMware to Work for you 

There by clicking on the handy dandy image, or even by this embedded link you will have access to the live presentation I delivered for the folks over by there and the some ~130 or so attendees who were on the line (submitting questions, so on and so forth).   As most of you know this is something I’m particularly passionate about (Virtualization, Best Practices, Mission Critical Apps) all of that, and I do love to share my body of work to help make your day to day jobs even easier.    I definitely encourage you to go through the link to check out the live version of events (slides can only tell so much of the story, and I share a lot of stories not reflected directly in the slides) but I also encourage you to check out the links below which will have the original source material and SPEAKER NOTES OMG THE SPEAKER NOTES!  Those are filled with every ounce of material you need to help make your case and continue to make your case when it comes to virtualizing and driving your story home; it’s something you won’t regret having on hand. :)

I do encourage you to use this material to help make your case, if you’re going to publicly share the slides or use them in your own source (as many have done) I appreciate a reference or just letting me know (sometimes I update material and I’d hate for you not to have the latest material :))

Also anyone who wishes to contribute back into this living body of work, don’t hesitate to in the comments.   We’re only as good as our information and any chance to improve that I’ll be sure to reference back to you as well!   Thanks, and here is the rest of it! :)

Slides delivered for the Virtualization Strategies session (Hyper-V material had been hidden)

Slides delivered for The Experts Conference 2012 #TEC2012 – Best Practices for Virtualizing Mission Critical Applications

Slides delivered for The Experts Conference 2011 #TEC2011 Session (material was later updated in 2012, but I am full disclosure :))

… And just for good measure since I’m sharing… here for a little of storage is…

Slides delivered for The Experts Conference 2012 #TEC2012 Session of Storage, Backup, Recovery for HyperV

… And the holidays wouldn’t be proper without adding one last mini-gift! My Post-VMworld 2012 Update – Cherish :)

Slides delivered for the St Croix Solutions community with the Post VMworld 2012 Recap!

 

So a hearty happy holidays to you and your kind, as we launch into a brand new year… Oh the exciting things we will have to share when that time comes! :)

Stay tuned :)

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Posted in emc, Evangelist, Exchange, Hyper-V, Informational, Microsoft, Sharepoint, SQL, Storage, Technology, Virtualization, vmware, VMworld, Windows Server | Comments (0)

The Definitive Guide to Prepare for VMworld 2012 in San Francisco (+#CXIDinner Details)

August 20th, 2012

Wow. VMworld is a Week away! 7 whole days! (Unless you count events on Sunday then 6, or when I get there on Saturday, then 5!)

But what does this mean?! Are you ready? Are you prepared? Have you gone back in time and read my Previous Posts on the subject in how to prepare?!

Disclaimer: Be SURE to go back and read at least the VMworld Tips/Tricks post as I’m referring and citing data from there, but not replicating it

I know some of you felt all of the content wasn’t entirely relevant to San Francisco compared to that of Las Vegas, so here goes … the Definitive Guide to Prepare for VMworld 2012 in San Francisco! I’ll try to cover everything which is important… Transportation, The Food, The Parties, the Crazies.  Yea. All of it.

Packing

It’s a whole week away, who’s thinking about packing now? (I know @StorageMistress is already packed!) and likely so should you begin planning for this!

Must Have Items to Pack and Consider:

  • Comfortable Shoes:   I cannot stress this enough (I feel like I’ve said it before, and I have, and I’ll say it again, Oh and again.) BRING COMFORTABLE SHOES!.  Whether you’re sticking ENTIRELY to the show floor or you walk outside anywhere (a lot of the events are OFF-Site at times) you’ll find yourself walking.   Not only walking streets, but hills and environments the likes of which Cable Cars were designed for! So bring your comfortable shoes; You can thank me later!
  • Bring Business Cards: I know who you are, I met you, you’re the guy who has a QR code! You’re all SCAN MY QR CODE TO GUARANTEE WE’LL NEVER TALK EVVVEEEEEEEERRRRRR!!!! It’s true, it’s serious. People don’t exchange QR codes and remember each other.  You don’t enter that random contest to win an iPad or a Nexus 7 by giving them your QR code in a bowl.   You exchange Business Cards. Deal with it. Oh and PACK SOME BUSINESS CARDS!
  • Laptop:   If you don’t need your laptop because you’re not going to be working while at the show, leave it at home.   If you bring your laptop because you need to work (like me) and you want to accomplish anything of relevance, LEAVE IT IN YOUR ROOM.  The last thing you need to do is worry about where your laptop is, especially because once you bring it, you will NEVER take it out of it’s case when you hit the show floor, less than 3% of people do. (Exceptions: Blogger, Analyst and other folks who specifically are demoing and using the laptop at set intervals) Save yourself grief though and leave it in the Hotel room, or leave it at home.
  • Clothing:    If you’re a suit guy, bring suits.  If you’re a T-shirt and Jeans guy, bring that.   This is a conference like any conference so you’ll likely end up with random T-Shirts, random this and that’s.  (Oh if you’re job hunting here… Dress above your station, Seriously, no SERIOUSLY DO IT. ;))    Pack appropriately don’t over-pack, per se, but be sure to pack adequately.   If you can survive with Carry-On only (My Preferred way to live) you will WIN!   If you find yourself needing to buy things once you hit the ground it’s not a major problem, but consider San Francisco’s Sales Tax is 9.5%….
  • Cell Phone:   I added this at the last minute.   If you find your ATT Phone doesn’t work to save your life for Data. I heartily welcome to you San Francisco.   … Mobile will be a challenge in every case, if it’s improved you are a lucky beast! If it doesn’t work, just operate on that expectation!

Transportation

Whether this is your first VMworld, or your 50th VMworld; your First time in San Francisco, or you’re an old school native… Transportation is an IMPORTANT one to address.   – All of these rules apply especially going TO or FROM the Airport, so find some buddies and group up!

Options:

  • Taking BART:   A lot of you say “Yea, I’m gonna take BART and I’ll be all good”   Don’t get me wrong. BART is a great idea.  If you have time to burn, I highly encourage it.    Whoa, Whoa, hold on a minute, are you openly bashing public transportation?   Yea, kind of, but not exactly.    Allow me to explain :)
    • If you are within 1 Mile of Moscone staying at the JW Marriott, Renaissance, Marriott Marquis, Serrano, Inter-Continental and so forth?  WALK. ONE FOOT IN FRONT OF THE OTHER.    Yea, You should be walking, it’s not a difficult task.   If you have a lot of stuff to carry, or there’s a bunch of you staying a mile away and you’re lazy (What?! Lazy people in IT? WHERE?!) Then hop in a cab, it’s semi-efficient.   But otherwise, WALK.    But wait, what about hotels farther away?!
    • If you like a lot of very sad folks are staying at the SFO Marriott (~15 miles away) Get a car and car-pool, it’ll be cheaper.    Consider the following calculation.    Taking BART from the SFO Marriott only costs $5 One-Way! However it entails a 60 minute one-way trip, including walking 1.5 Miles all-in.    If I’m in San Francisco on my own dime and I have time to burn this is a great idea.   However, I like you are here for a fixed amount of time, and the burden taking public transportation losing a minimum of 2hrs a day in transport with walking 3 miles a day guaranteed is no way to spend your extremely valuable time.
  • Renting a Car:  WTF? WHO RENTS A CAR IN SAN FRANCISCO!??! No one.  Unless you’re staying at the SFO Marriott, and I suggest ONE of you rents for every 4-5 people you have in a group or party. (Or find some friends! :))  FYI, the time/distance by car is ~30 minutes.   Which means you lose an hour of your day traveling, but at least it is on YOUR terms.   There is no “Last car of the day” and Parking in/around Moscone seems fairly reasonable
  • Taking a Taxi (~1-2M):   If you’re within ~1-2 miles of Moscone, sure, take a taxi if it’s fitting… Sometimes we all have deadlines we need to support, I respect and understand that!
  • Taking a Taxi (~15M):    If you’re staying at the SFO Marriott for example and you take a Taxi, That is a $45 one way trip.  If you have that kind of money to burn, I have a bridge to sell you (and potentially some licensing… HAH!) But seriously, That CAN work out if you load that car up with 4-5 of you and group together, but do not do it solo.

Taking a Shuttle:

Many of you may not have known about this, it seems to have been a hidden fact for some so I wanted to ensure the details are documented here for you!

The secret fact:

  • Here are the hotels which will HAVE shuttle Service (According to VMworld Registration Support Team)
  • Hilton San Fran Union Sq; Hotel Adagio; Milano; Monaco; Nikko; Palomar; Triton; Hyatt at Fishermans Wharf; Hyatt Regency; Intercontinental Mark Hopkins; Intercon San Fran; JW Marriott; Marriott Union Sq; Omni; Palace; Parc 55; Prescott; Ritz Carlton; San Fran Downtown Courtyard by Marriott; Mariott Marquis; Serrano; Sir Francis Drake; St Regis; Stanford Court; Westin San Fran Market St; Westin St Francis; Villa Florence; W San Fran;
  • Interesting facts I’d like to note:
    • This list is in Alphabetical Order for your convenience
    • This list DOES NOT INCLUDE SFO/AIRPORT HOTELS
    • This list does include the W. (Have you ever seen the W? It’s ACROSS THE STREET FROM MOSCONE) 
    • Take this list with a grain of salt.   I’ve heard conflicting opinions that there aren’t shuttles and yet I got this list… so find a good transport plan, commit and roll with it.

    Transportation
    VMworld shuttles between the airport and hotels are not provided. Conference shuttle service will be provided at select VMworld 2012 official hotels to Moscone West.  Service offered every 20 minutes during the following AM and PM Peak hours of the conference:

Sunday, August 26 12:30PM – 9:00PM
Monday, August 27 6:30AM – 10:30AM, 4:00PM – 8:30PM
Tuesday, August 28 6:30AM – 10:30AM, 4:00PM – 8:00PM
Wednesday, August 29 6:30AM – 10:30AM, 4:00PM – 6:00PM
Extended Party Hours 7:00PM – 10:00PM
Thursday September 30 6:30AM – 10:30AM, 12:00PM – 4:00PM

Shuttle Drop Off: Moscone West Convention Center
Shuttle Pick Up: Information on shuttle routes and pick up locations can be found at select VMworld 2012 hotels and at the designated drop off location at Moscone West.

Networking and Sessions and Labs

No, this section is not about Nicira or SDN. :)   

For those of you who are veterans to VMworld or if you’ve never seen the inside of a conference session before.   This section applies to you, regardless.

  • Networking is KEY.     Chances are if you want to do something, someone there has already done it before and can share their experience.   Some people are sad and lonely and are looking for others to talk to about how they backup their Virtualization environment.   Let’s be honest.  You’re all geeks in one way or another and you have your particular area of focus, of interest, of… whatever.    And there’s bound to be at least a dozen more of you there who share the same interests, so it’s important to FIND each other, Exchange business cards and “buy” each other a drink at some Vendors Party    – Not sure who’s doing what you want, or on and so forth? Find ME. I know all of you and can help ‘matchmake’ you SDN guys with you other neurotic vCloud guys. :)
  • OMG I WANT TO ATTEND THESE 3 SESSIONS ALL RUNNING AT THE SAME TIME.
    • You guys know that the sessions are available after the fact in video+PDF format, right? Seriously? You know that right?!?!  Don’t kill yourself to attend a session which is full or 2 1/2 miles from where you are that you forgo eating just to get there on time….
    • I said this last year, and guess what. It still applies.  So don’t kill yourself for the sessions.   If you have to choose between two sessions which are applicable to your business, choose the one more likely to involve ‘interaction’ instead of rote lecture.    Or pick the one with the full-er room :)
    • I list a bunch of other very good reasons on this in VMworld Tips, Tricks and Prize winning #vmworld so go back and read it :)
  • LABS LABS LABS!!!    Some of you don’t have access to labs, or nearly the comprehensive set of labs they have here.    Since I’ve found it a challenge to get access to these labs Post-VMworld “Hey, we’re fixing that … yea I’ll believe it when I see it” – I encourage you to spend time going through the labs, learning the material… Camping out in the Lab room and just getting into the material deep! The Lab Proctors are GOOD guys who’ve been in the game a long time and can help you out with more than just your lab (shhh… don’t tell them I told you to do that ;))    So get your LAB ON!

Friendships Forged in Fire and Wine

VMworld is not just about Virtualization, Learning, Sessions, Labs and Networking.   It is about Friendships Forged deep, often over some kind of spirit and intensive conversation.    Battles will be fought, People will transition from Company to Company, Customer to Partner, Partner to Vendor, Vendor to Competitor; but with all said and done.   We are still friends.    And we stick together and get the opportunity to share in each others experiences again.    You are not excluded from this category.    If you walk away from VMworld without having met at least 5 new people, or forged some ridiculous potential life long relationship; You have Failed.  Yea I said it. FAILURE.    If you’re on a distribution list that I created and Managed for this event for internal communication and you don’t take advantage of the mindshare of folks attending in person to get to know each other and do business… You are failing your future, upwards!     So take those moments.   See your friends, Meet and Make New Friends, Think outside of your box and reach outside of your comfort area.    And if you need a push in the right direction, Find me – I’ll nudge you, introduce you and more.

#CXIDinner, Cat Ears, and my Schedule

This has been a question of CONTROVERSY for quite some time OMG IS CXI THROWING HIS FABLED #cxiparty this year.   The official answer is; no.    Why? Because San Francisco is RIDICULOUSLY EXPENSIVE OMG.    And I would never wish that burden upon ANYONE, And I seriously mean ANYONE. NEVER, NOT THAT BURDEN.    You think San Francisco is Expensive, Imagine at SCALE (#CXIParty had >1200 people last year, where the hell do you store that many people in this city?!)    So, no, I will not be throwing an official #CXIParty at that level of scale like seen in Las Vegas last year (You can count on it in Vegas again though ;))

That said though.    Here is what you can count on.    VMworld 2010 in San Francisco gave birth the creation of #CXIDinner – It’s very informal, very comfortable, very much a different kind of event, usually after all is said, done, and settled (starting anywhere from 10PM to 2 or 3AM… really depends on what we’re doing is over)    So you’re more than welcome to find out WHERE the #CXIDinner will be hosted on any given night.    None of them are (officially) Partner sponsored at this time, so you’d be catching your own tab, but we keep it honest, practical, affordable and friendly.    So if you’re a late night guy who is hungry like we all are, I encourage you to monitor twitter for updates on where #CXIDinner will be happening, or my regular @CXI Feed…

FYI: #CXIDinner will be a daily activity occurring at some random variable time – No registration, just show up / notify / txt (630.362.1320), whatever. :)   Hopefully #CXIDinner veterans such as @HPStorageGuy will be there too! :)

Speaking of Cat Ears; Yes I will have *many* of my fabled cat ears, my new Brain Wave controlled cat ears, and even a CUSTOM set of ears I’ll be unveiling early (These will also be my ears to celebrate my birthday coming in September.   – Let’s celebrate my birthday at VMworld… and again in Chicago on September 8th! :))

Some of you may wonder “You keep saying come find you, but WTF how am I supposed to do that!@!@!@”  – Well, here is a copy of my schedule to make that a TAD easier… :)

@CXI Schedule for VMworld

As you can see I took advantage of the “Personal Time” which most likely involves me being on the Show Floor or diagramming something using random sticks or something somewhere, but either way… you *might* be able to find me in those locations at those times… In theory of course!    As far the “After Hours” goes… I’m playing that by ear.  It’s been awhile since I’ve NOT been organizing or throwing some kind of event so I like the freedom to do whatever the hell I’d like in those circumstances. (Yes I’ll be at the #VMUnderground on Sunday, you don’t have to worry about that! ;))

Oh and I’m bound to head over to Chinatown for Foot and Hand Reflexology at the place which is hands down the best I’ve experienced, even across China and Asia!  So come on down – I’ll also be doing some vegan meals at random points too if you want to experience pure OMG.

But wait, that’s not all!   Last but not least (Yes, as you’ll see this is an area OFTEN left as an after-thought…)

Security and Safety

  • Only carry what you need
      • This is a general ‘pick-pocket’ city rule. If you have a wallet with ‘x’ number of credit cards, pick the ones you need MOST and leave the rest somewhere safe [At home, or in the hotel/safe] To re-enforce that, let me give you an example of things you NEED and things you DONT need
        • NEED: Credit Card, Cash, ID [Passport, State ID or License, not ALL three with you though] Insurance Card, BUSINESS CARDS
        • DON’T NEED: Library Card, Membership card to some arbitrarily local thing which doesn’t apply here, blah blah blah
      • Now I want you to seriously think about it. If you lost your wallet how many of these items would it HURT to lose and how many would be ANNOYING to lose. Losing ID sucks as does losing credit cards and cash, but losing the wallet normally makes that happen. The other misc don’t need items is just insult to injury in annoyance. Ride thin and keep only what you need on you.
  • Write your name in something you own
      • Once upon a time [okay a year ago] I got a phone call from the Las Vegas airport asking if I had lost my Notebook there. Having not been to Vegas in some time, I did not. They had found a notebook which had MY business card in it! I knew there was an internal VMware meeting going on that week and I knew who I had given my card to, so I took down the information and tracked down who the notebook belonged to. If his name was WRITTEN in the notebook or similarly on whatever item it was, they could have contacted him directly. The point is… take ownership of what belongs to you and you have a vested interest in :)
  • Travel in a group or at least don’t travel alone 
      • Taking a step further beyond pick-pocketing, there are other matters to be concerned about.   Sure you should be fine if you are out at 8PM after an event, or even 10PM but the later it gets, the crazier it gets (e.g. Homeless Man Gets Sleeping Bag Stolen During SF SoMa Plunger Attack – Which happened at 3:30AM a week ago)   I sincerely care for all of you attending, whether I know you or not and want you to be prepared.   I’ve followed the ‘crazy’ that occurs on the streets in/around Moscone and SF downtown for years; do your best not to travel alone or put yourself into otherwise potentially compromising situations, it’s not worth the headache and heartache.   Though what you do get is stories like….
      • Last time VMworld was in San Francisco, It was around 11PM as I was walking back from having dinner with @Beaker and there in the Yerba Buena Gardens fountain was a man sloshing around knee deep in the water picking up change.    For those of you who follow my Photo Journeys of the world on Instagram and shared on Tumblr note I never took this photo.   Because let’s just say… Some crazy is best left observed and not documented with photos; the end result is me being alive to tell you this very story!
      • Be careful, any time of day or night.   But don’t be afraid to enjoy the beautiful city!  

    I hope you have a safe and joyous VMworld, Let me know if this helps, if you want to post any additional comments, tips, suggestions, Car-pooling, all that.

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    Posted in Baltimization, Evangelist, Informational, Vegan, Virtualization, VMworld | Comments (2)

    How to REALLY Mass Unfollow on Twitter! (OMG IT’S FREE AND EASY?!?!)

    November 7th, 2011

    I’ve written on this subject a number of different times (See bottom of post for all of the various links on this matter!)    However what I am going to share here has been not a secret per se, I just never got around to SHARING how to do it, as I was busy actually USING it as a tool! OMG, right?!

    Disclaimer: The following tool is FREE for 1000 Unfollows PER DAY. It cannot be used for Following FOR FREE.  Which is why I manually follow back using the twitter.com Webpage. It’s monotonous and slow as hell, but it is what I do!   But at least there is an answer to the unfollow!

    BEGIN THE MASS UNFOLLOW ON THE TWITTER! :)

    It all starts with logging in to the ManageFlitter Website.

    Manage Flitter Start  ManageFlitter Connect to Twitter ManageFlitter is indexing your contacts!

    These three steps run so inline it’s so simple! Click “Start” choose to “Connect to Twitter” which sets up an Auth against your acct with creds, and then it pulls in the database of who you are following and who is following you.  VERY SIMPLE. Basically mindless.

    ManageFlitter unfollow those not following you! Check baby check baby 1-2-3 You have unfollowed people, OMG THE HORROR!!!

    Then it provides a list of various categories.   If you want to unfollow people NOT following you, then simply select that category (defaulted) and go and CHECK the boxes of people you want to unfollow.   Wow, it’s that simple! Then simple choose “Unfollow selected” and you’re DONE!

    BUT WAIT! THERE’s MORE!!!

    Twitter “Rules” dictate that they cannot give you a “Check all boxes” option or else this would be so much easier. But in the effort of CHEATING, I advise you download a tool like “CheckFox” which will allow you to Check ALL of the boxes on the webpage [Up to 100 per page] and mass-unfollow those 100.

    Then simply rinse-repeat and go from page to page to page until you’ve either unfollowed everyone you want to, or you’ve hit your 1000 limit for the day.

    Either way, this has MASSIVELY cut what it takes to unfollow. Yay, right?   But it’s not limited to who isn’t following you.  You can choose people who’ve NEVER tweeted if you want, or who have no profile picture, or are TOO Active or INACTIVE. (I’d fall into the  “Too Active” category! ;)

    There isn’t a whole lot more to add to this.  It’s clear, succinct, and straight forward :) If you know of OTHER tools like this which are as easy and free, mention it!   And if you have follow-back tools, mention them! I’ve stopped looking!

    Links:

    How to mass follow and unfollow on twitter FOR FREE?!?!?

    How to mass follow and unfollow on twitter: over 10k club!

    How to mass unfollow or follow people on Twitter .. and more!

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    Posted in FireFox, Free, Informational, Social Media, Twitter | Comments (4)

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