Fixing the Windows MBR using a Ubuntu Live CD or USB

This friend of mine had installed Windows and Fedora side by side on his laptop and wanted to remove the Fedora installation. Removing Fedora is quite easy. All you have to do is to go to Disk Management from Windows (Run -> diskmgmt.msc), find the Fedora partitions, delete them and format as new drives.
However, this also removes the MBR of the machine. To restore the MBR, the accepted method is to use a Windows CD. We didn’t have that luxury. Fortunately we had a Ubuntu Live USB in hand.

The method to fix the MBR is:
1. Boot the machine using the Live USB/CD.
2. Install lilo

sudo apt-get install lilo

3. Fix the MBR using lilo using the command:

sudo lilo -M /dev/sda mbr

Works like a charm!

New year photo tagging

I’m usually not easily annoyed at stuff, but others tagging me in new year wishes photos can really take me to the limit. And I know I’m not alone.
But how can you make another understand how annoying it is? If you’re not very careful explaining this can even lead to loss of friendship. Why? Because those who tag the stupid photos really think it’s some kind of ritual or pleasantry that has to be performed and they don’t want to think about it beyond that. When somebody explains how annoying the whole tagging thing is, all what the tagger hears is ‘blah blah’.
Not everyone can think in the same way. You can’t just make others think the way you like them to think. It’s simple as that.
So unless you want to risk the friendship, never try to explain one how annoying what he does is.

Wiping out your race?

racismThere are blogs. Then there are racist blogs. I happened to see one of the latter today.
The blog warns us that there’s a master plan by the international community to wipe out our race and goes on to explain how the plan is being carried out presently. Apparently that’s supposed to be a long term plan and there’s plenty of evidence to suggest the authenticity of its claims. Pretty convincing, I would say. The message the writer is trying to give is clear. Open your eyes. Your race is doomed. Join and fight for survival.

What the fuck! Why would one be worried about his race being swept out? What good would it do if your race survives? Will the others feel alone without you? (They of course won’t coz it’s the others that are planning your demise.)
When a race is wiped away from the face of the earth, its culture and traditions would be gone as well. But what good would it do if they continued to exist?
None. Zilt. Nothing. Even the humanity would die away one day. The earth as we know wouldn’t be there forever. Some things may die quickly and others may stay a while.
I know that by now the reader may have taken me as a weirdo or a lunatic trying to make crazy remarks to get heard or something, but I don’t care. This is what I feel.
I love my race. But that’s only one side of the story.

Playing MIDI files in Ubuntu

I was taken by surprise when I found out that I could not play MIDI audio in my Ubuntu box. Apparently it has to do with your sound card. But still..!

One of the simplest methods to play a midi file in Ubuntu is to install timidity. Yeah, lovely name that. 😀

sudo apt-get install timidity timidity-interfaces-extra

You can play a midi file directly from the command timidity followed by the file name. For example,

timidity awesometune.mid

Or, if you want a GUI, you can simply type

timidity -ig

and an old-fashioned window will pop up.

Happy listening! 😀

World's end

Just finished reading Daya Dissanayake’s article on today’s Daily News titled Lessons from the Drowned World, where he goes to explain how the natural and man-made disasters mentioned in the literature could actually come true and put an end to this world.

The ongoing Fukushima nuclear crisis has paved way to rethink the safety of the modern technology man is using to conquer the world. But should we really be scared? What if some sudden accident happens and the humanity along with other species is wiped out from the face of the earth?

There is no reason to shudder at such a thought. If everything is wiped away, so will the sorrows and regrets we struggle to suppress. Why should we continue to live if all we care for and live for get swept out?

We know nothing about life beyond earth, but that should not scare anybody. We will be going into oblivion, but so will our families and loved ones. Nothing left to worry. All problems closed.

Well, I’m not wishing for such an extermination to happen, all I do is underlining that we shouldn’t be so frightened of a possible end to the world. Let the technology go on its way without hesitation.