How to Backup and Recover Windows 7 from Blueray BD-RE(rewritable)

Having a good backup and recovery plan is a must for every systems admin, but every day users can greatly benifit from a little preventive maintenence.  I for instance, only use Windows for games; every time a hard drive fails or ‘Windows recovery’ wipes out my MBR I have to start from scratch.  So this last week after getting a Direct X, ATI, Windows 7 ‘Blue Screen of Death’ for the third time in three monthes I made the wise decision to replace the disk and install Windows 7 from scratch.

The Windows 7 installation itself goes pretty smooth, but the patches, drivers, direct X and game setup triples the time to reinstall.  The easiest thing to do is make a image of fresh install with your favorite default apps and settings.  Overall I like Windows 7, but it’s still a ways off from Linux and OSX in terms of price, stability and tools, but the ISO backup is a great built-in feature.

For my setup I’m using a LG 12x burner and  22.5 GB BD-RE(rewritable) disk.  I like BlueRay BD-RE, they burn up to like 44 GB disks.  Even at $10.00(for the 22.5 GB)  a disk, that’s a cheap easy successor to Tape drives.  BD-RE’s supposedly last much long than DVD-RW, but obviously not as long as tape drives.

Goals of this Post:

– Use Windows 7 recovery console to create an image of a fresh install
– Recover to New Hard Disk
– Expand Logical Volume to fit new Hard Drive


Written by mattb in: Windows | Tags: , , ,

How to Configure Anonymous Web Surfing on Linux with Tor

Tor is a Open Source distributed network of virtual tunnels for the purpose of anonmity online.  Here is a excerpt from their site describing the mission of Tor:

Ongoing trends in law, policy, and technology threaten anonymity as never before, undermining our ability to speak and read freely online. These trends also undermine national security and critical infrastructure by making communication among individuals, organizations, corporations, and governments more vulnerable to analysis. Each new user and relay provides additional diversity, enhancing Tor’s ability to put control over your security and privacy back into your hands.

In simple words Tor helps disguise your true IP address, making it more difficult on third partyies to snoop on your web browsing.  For my installation I’m using Fedora 13 i686 and Firefox version 3.1.13.

Goals of this post:

– Install Tor client
– Install Polipo proxy
– Install Torbutton Firefox extensions


Written by mattb in: Linux | Tags: , , , , ,