Cатсн²² (in)sесuяitу / ChrisJohnRiley

Because we're damned if we do, and we're damned if we don't!

Category Archives: General Life

All good things must come to an end

By the time you read this, I will be gone… no, not like that! Let me start at the beginning.

Back in 2008 (when I was still young and almost had hair) I joined a small team (actually it was just 1 person if I remember rightly) at an Austrian company called Raiffeisen Informatik (I think that’s the first time I’ve written that on the blog… for obvious reasons). It was my first job since moving to Austria, and despite my lack of German skills (I could just about say “hello” and “goodbye” at the time) they took the chance on me. I’d like to think it paid off… but who am I to say.

It’s been more than 6 years since that day, and the team at what became R-IT CERT has expanded from it’s early days considerably. As the title suggests, today was my last day at R-IT CERT… and it’s a bitter sweat ending. I’ve enjoyed my time working with the great members of the team, and had a lot of great challenges. Working at R-IT CERT has given me a lot of freedom to do interesting and unique projects… but I’m really looking forward to the new challenges that are ahead of me. More details on that as and when!

The long goodbye…

endI remember when I first saw him… I thought he was ugly, unruly and unworthy of my attention… and so I shunned him. After a time, I looked back, unable to ignore that “something” that I was missing. I went back, and once more he failed to impress. Again, I shunend him. There was just that something that was missing. It was all there in the promise, but in reality, it just didn’t click… once again I shunned him and moved on. It was some time later that I realised what I’d done. That i’d misread him and mistaken what he offered. He was my future after all, and there was nothing else that would be better for me. I embraced him, let myself fall into a rhythm and never looked back!

Years later I can think on that moment, having moved on to newer and better things, and remember the first time I saw him across the room. He seemed to glow, at least that’s what my memory tells me. We’re not together anymore, and I miss him sometimes, but you know what… it’s OK. It’s Ok for both of us. We grew apart and he just couldn’t fill my needs anymore. To be honest, it was me that first broke away… I don’t want to call it playing away, but it’s what it was I guess. There were just needs that he couldn’t forfill anymore, and I needed something that I couldn’t get from him anymore. I knew that he knew… and he knew that it was what I needed… he never judged! He was good like that.

The time has come though my friend. I can’t be with you anymore… those long nights we spent together have to come to an end. The time has come to say goodbye forever.

Goodbye my friend… you’ll always be in my memories!

Windows XP (2001 – 2014)

{QuickPost} Windows 8 Digital Product Key recovery

Recently I’ve started moving over my lab systems from my old faithful Mac Book Pro to a new Lenovo system. After receiving the new Lenovo and booting into Windows 8 pro for the first time, I did what any sane person would… formatted the thing and installed a usable operating system.

After the usual tinkering period and getting everything setup just right, I turned my mind to setting up the various lab VMs I wanted, and quickly realized that my new Lenovo with Windows 8 pro had no license code. No sticker, nothing in the documentation, nothing on the box. Where the F was that little code I needed to get Windows 8 pro running in my VirtualBox lab.

Well, the answer came quickly… it’s in the BIOS. When you installed Windows 8 it checks for a Digital Product Key (DPK) and uses it. Simple, except I’m pretty sure my VirtualBox VM isn’t going to read the key from my BIOS through a thin layer of virtualized hardware (although I could be wrong on that). So, after digging about on the net and finding a whole load of “if you run Windows just do this” type solutions, I started digging around in my BIOS using a few Linux tools (dmidecode and acpidump).

Although dmidecode gives a nice decoded view of most of the data, it didn’t seem to pick out the information I was looking for (still, interesting stuff). In the end I used acpidump to dump the data and comb through it looking for the MSDM section containing my Windows 8 pro DPK.


sudo acpidump -t MSDM

This will output the hex and ASCII version of the DPK from your system




Text-based adventures… a retrospective

© Jared von Hindman (http://headinjurytheater.com/) I hope he doesn't crash a plane into my house for using this image ;)

© Jared von Hindman (http://headinjurytheater.com/)

I still remember the first ever text-based adventure I played. No need for high-end graphics cards and kinetic camera systems. Just you against the mind of the creator.

Wether it was Zork, Leather goddesses of Phobos, or any of a thousand spin-off titles, they all remind me of my childhood! It seems like an age ago now, but it went a little something like this.


You wake up, bleary eyed in a long darkly light room. Your right arm aches from the injection, at least you think that’s what it was. Memories are hard to grasp as your head spins. The walls are bare and the air has an acrid smell to it that makes you gag.

There is a large oak door to the north and a small gap in the south wall leading off into darkness.

> go north

“I don’t understand what you want me to do”

> n

You go north. Beyond the door is a room of wonders. In the sparse light you see things that you never thought you’d ever see. You are eaten by a grue!

> go south

“I don’t understand what you want me to do”

> s

You breath in and squeeze your way along the ever shrinking tunnel. Just as you think it can’t get any smaller, you’re eaten by a grue!

> look

“look at what”

> look at floor

“It’s a floor”

> go^H^Hw

“You can’t go that way”

> e

“You can’t go that way”

> up

“You can’t go that way”

> down

“You can’t go that way”

> nweweqwqeqwrqwrqwr

“I don’t understand what you want me to do”

> fuck

“What do you want to fuck?”

> you

“I don’t understand what you want me to do”

> se

“Congratulations you’ve found a secret tunnel leading south east corner. The tunnel is long and winds up and down until it comes into the bright midday sun. Your eyes adjust to the harsh light just in time to see yourself getting eaten by a grue!

> exit

“I don’t understand what you want me to do”

> quit

“are you sure you want to quit?”

> Y

“You are eaten by a grue…”