Alienware Aurora R4 Command Center

so you bought yourself an Alienware R4 rig a few years back, you want to get your value out of the thing so upgrading to windows 10 is the logical thing to do. but wait Command Center no longer works?

The Problem: windows 10 doesn’t play nice with the Command Center software provided by Dell/Alienware.

The Solution: Command Center 3.6 in compatibility mode is your solution. download it here. run it in compatibility mode for windows 8.1 you also must designate window 8.1 on Dells download page for CC3.6 to even show up.

Microsoft Word Graph Paper?

this is what your problem looks like..

this is what your problem looks like..

The Problem: Microsoft Word (any version) is displaying graph paper on screen.

The Solution: this is not difficult to fix but knowing where to look is key. and there are several solutions. here is the most common.

  • Office 2003: go to the draw menu – Grid – uncheck the Gridlines option
  • Office 2007/2010: click View, de-select “Gridlines” in the “Show” group.


adv-entures in video codecs!

Next one up: video codecs that should be obsolete!..

The Problem: you’ve got a video file; avi, mpeg, etc that wont play.

The Solution: your experience WILL vary.

  1. Find what codec was used to encode the video file, to do this.. you can look for the error code that VLC will throw out. or you can download a small little program called G-spot (careful when searching for that) in fact I’ll save you the effort and give you the download link; G-spot download there you go.
  2. Download the actual codec. this part can be fun… or not. in my case I needed the ADV1 codec. which is old and uncommon and generally used for security system and/or CCTV recordings. and of course hard to find. there’s many different developers for codecs so the whole process of searching for them and installing them varies depending on what you need.

often times no specific error is given for video playback issues. after trying 3 different players, only VLC gave me an error prompt with the information I needed.

a little info about the ADV1 codec for those that are interested; its also known as the Loronix Wavelet codec. Loronix, being the developer, doesnt seem to support the codec any more and as such I was unable to find a download package anywhere on there website. however I did find one single page with a downloadable file. which I’m posting here for convenience.

ADV1 Codec Download: Loronix.Wavelet.codec.v3.0



Preview not supported

The Problem: print preview will not work when printing a PDF, running snow leopard.

The Solution: okay, this ones interesting but It’s normal because Acrobat has a more powerful printing and preview capability than Preview does, so running output through Preview would just dumb it down.. unfortunately I couldn’t find a fix for this.. other then uninstalling adobe.

Dell backup and restore

If you’ve bought a new Dell recently you may have noticed one of the few software packages Dell has pre-installed for you. Dell Data Protection, Dell Client System Update and, today’s focus, Dell Backup and Recovery Manager. while useful, it is a bit redundant on windows 7 PCs that already have a backup solution built into the OS. but whats worse is a back up utility that continuously prompts you via taskbar notifications even after uninstalling said software.

The Problem: Dell Backup And Recovery Manager taskbar notification wont go away!

Dell Backup and Recovery Manager

The Details: you’ve uninstalled the software and disabled the icon in the notification area icons section of the control panelĀ  but the icon in the taskbar remains

The Solution: right click on the taskbar icon and close the application and then
Delete this folder: “C:\dell” and restart.

Dell Backup and Recovery Manager file location


WordPress, Godaddy and forwarded domains

If you’re like me then you do a lot of WordPress work, creating databases, installing and/or customizing wordpress themes, plugins and a host of related duties. that being said, once in a while you run into the occasional “not-so-well-documented” installation problem….

The Scenario: you already have a WordPress blog up and running with a large number of posts made by a client. They decide they want a different domain name.. you do the most practical thing by forwarding the new domain to the old blog. problem solved right?

The Problem: your new domain name forwards to your old blog but the masking is all wrong. so you go to your site using and it works with correct domain listed in the address bar but once you click on a link to a specific post or page it shows your old domain.

The Solution: to do this right, you must have a deluxe hosting plan with Godaddy to properly forward a domain.. and just to be clear, its not technically forwarding as its typically understood to be. Godaddy calls this domain aliasing. and you must have this correct. the problem here may look like its related to a Godaddy setting somewhere but its not. the solution actually resides within WordPress.

be extra careful with the site address field, do you're homework before adjusting

once you install WordPress it remembers its location despite the updated domain alias. to fix this simply go to your WordPress settings under the general section and update the “site address (URL)” section to the new domain. be very very careful with this setting. you could be making more work for yourself if your problem is different then what I’ve described above. has the complete how to on this.. which in my case wasn’t applicable for reasons I’m not entirely clear about but presumably because my URL update was in response to my aliased domain.