Ridiculous RAM Requirement when signing up for DSL Service

I was recently trying to find the best price for internet service in my area and came across a question asking me how much RAM my computer has.  I was surprised by the options in the dropdown.

32MB, really?

Luckily I had at least the minimum requirements.

Ridiculous RAM Requirement when signing up for DSL Service

Using jQuery and YQL to get an RSS feed from a site

I forgot to post a link to this earlier, but I wrote a blog post on using jQuery and YQL to get an RSS feed from a web site. The code uses YQL to grab the content of the external site and then jQuery to find a link tag pointing to the location of the RSS feed. This is similar to how Firefox displays the RSS feed icon in the address bar.

Check out the full post here.

Using jQuery and YQL to get an RSS feed from a site

Using VPN on Windows 7 64-bit

After using the Windows 7 RC for the last few months, I finally had to update it once March 1st rolled around.  I had been using the 32-bit version but decided to go with the 64-bit for the full version.

Since I work from home sometimes I was going to need VPN access to my work machine.  I went to install the Cisco VPN client that we use and found that I couldn’t install it since it only came in a 32-bit flavor.  I figured it would be easy to just get a 64-bit compatible version and I would be on my way.  I soon found out that Cisco doesn’t offer a 64-bit version unless you purchase their “AnyConnect” software which is an additional charge.

Since I was already at home and needed a solution immediately I started searching around.  I soon came upon a piece of software that some  people of the forums said would work.  The software is ShrewVPN from Shrew.net.

After I installation it took me a minute to figure out how to run it since it didn’t add an entry into All Programs.  I browsed to Program Files/ShrewSoft/VPN Client and found a few application files to run.  I eventually found that ipseca.exe was the file I need to run.

Once the app loaded up it was pretty easy to configure since I had the Cisco configuration file (.pcf) from work. I selected File/Import from the menu and browsed the .pcf file.  Once it was selected I was able to connect to my work VPN without any problems!

Using VPN on Windows 7 64-bit

Windows 7 Login failed for user “IIS APPPOOLDefaultAppPool”

While starting development on a new project in Windows 7, I ran across the following error when trying to access the database.

Cannot open database "<Database Name>" requested by the login. The login failed.
Login failed for user 'IIS APPPOOLDefaultAppPool'.


I initially Googled the error and found this forum post that helped me solve the problem.  The site is in some other language so I will go over what you need to do here.

First, find the site that your application running under in IIS.

Select the site and click on “Advanced Settings” in the column on the right.  See which Application Pool your site is running under.

Now, click on “Application Pools” in IIS and select the application pool that your site is running under.  Click on “Advanced Settings”.

Scroll down to the “Process Model” section and click on the identity field.  Once it is selected, click on the “ellipsis” button.  In the dropdown under “Built-in Account” select “LocalSystem”.

Windows 7 Login failed for user “IIS APPPOOLDefaultAppPool”

Changing the battery in my 2004 Infiniti G35 6MT

I recently replaced my battery in my 2004 Infiniti G35 6MT and found the lack of instructions annoying so I am posting the steps I took to replace the battery.  I hope this helps others that either don’t live next to an Infiniti dealer or just want to do it themselves (I fall into both categories).  Any image can be clicked on the get a larger version.

Step 1

Remove the rubber lining around the battery cover that is closest to the windshield

Remove the rubber lining from the edge of the cover

Step 2

Remove the pins from the battery cover using a flathead screw driver.  These should pop out rather easily. There should be 5 that you have to remove.

The 5 holes where there are pins to remove
Use a flathead screwdriver to remove the pins

Step 3

Remove the battery terminals from the battery using either a wrench or a socket.  The negative cord should be easy to move out of the way, but the positive cord was a little tougher since it had some extra hardware on it.

The negative terminal has been removed and moved to the side
Preparing to remove the positive terminal

Step 4

Unplug the two plugs from the bottom of the positive cord in order to maneuver it out of the way a little better.  Using a flatehead screwdriver push in on the little bracket that is holding each plug in place.

Push the clip in to remove the plug
The first plug has been removed
Both plugs have been removed and the main terminal is moved to the side

Step 5

Unbolt the crossbar holding the battery in place.  I only unbolted the end that is clearly visible and then unhooked the other end by twisting it around until it came unhooked.

Unbolt the crossbar holding the battery in place

Step 6

Remove the battery.  This can be tricky since there is very little clearance.  You may need to bend the plastic covering a little in order to have enough room to get it out.

Very little clearance to move the battery out

Now that you have the battery out, you should be able to reverse the steps to put everything back together.  Back in step 1 when you are replacing the pins, make sure to slide the pin up a little before pressing it into the hole.  The image below should help out.

Keep the "disc" of the pin around the middle when you insert it into the hole

After I got everything hooked back up I fired up the car and I was back on the road.

Changing the battery in my 2004 Infiniti G35 6MT

A List Apart annual web survey 2009

Each year A List Apart conducts a survey targeted towards people who consider themselves web professionals.  I have taken the survey each year and enjoy looking over the results to see how my current situation compares to everyone who takes the survey.  To take this year’s survey, just go to A List Apart’s Survey Page.  The survey only took me about 4 minutes to complete.

If you are interested in seeing the kind of data the survey collects, you can view last year’s results.

I took the survey and you should too!

A List Apart annual web survey 2009