Solving a VPN Connection Problem with VPN Enabler on macOS Mojave

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This solution probably applies only to systems that were previously running macOS Server to provide VPN services.

The system I’ve been using to run Indigo for home automation has been stuck on High Sierra, due to the removal of support for the VPN server in the macOS Server application under Mojave. But running an older OS isn’t ideal, for several reasons, so I started searching, again, for a method to provide VPN services under Mojave.

After some brief searching, once again, I found positive reviews for VPN Enabler, a handy, low-cost tool ($15) that provides a GUI for the built-in VPN server in Mojave. The VPN services are still present in later version of Mojave; Apple simply removed the ability to administer it from the Server application (the Server application doesn’t work at all in the latest versions of Mojave).

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Error Installing Lion (OS X 10.7): “the installation information is damaged or incomplete”

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The Short Version: I needed to re-install OS X Lion on a system after formatting the standard partition. The install process required downloading the software from Apple first but it was blocked by network authentication. Requesting a temporary lifting of network restrictions for this system provided me with enough time to complete the download.

I needed to format a MacBook Pro that came with OS X Lion (10.7). My assumption was that the process would work the same as with disc-based installs.

The usual saying about assumptions applies.

The system didn’t have any problems at the beginning. I formatted the primary partition by booting to the recovery partition. Then, I let it begin the installation process by downloading the latest version of 10.7. I thought everything was working fine.

However, after I returned I discovered that the download had failed.

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mControl 3 Activation Problem – License File

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Our house experienced a power surge caused by a nearby lightning strike that damaged one of our A/C units along with a few other devices. Today I figured out that it damaged the network ports on the Airport Extreme Base Station along with the ethernet port on the ASUS system, which is my home automation server.

Fortunately, the ASUS box also has wireless so I was able to shift all of the network services over to the wifi adapter. I had to re-establish the built-in VPN server, among other annoyances. Since the ethernet port was no longer usable I decided to disable it in Windows 7.

Well, that caused a stupid problem.

mControl 3 has activation. I’m not a fan of activation.

I noticed the service was no longer working and wouldn’t start. When I viewed mControl’s log I saw the following message every time I attempted to start it:

The Installation Code of the license file does not match with Code 2. Please contact your System Administrator.
mServer License Code=Hacked/Hacker, Ver=.

My version isn’t hacked. I paid the commercial price (less because it was an upgrade from a previous version that I had also paid for). At first I thought that perhaps the license information was damaged but then I remembered that I had disabled the ethernet port and I noticed that there were some entries in the log during the activation check that hinted toward a check of the network device.

I re-enabled the built-in ethernet port. Sure enough, the software passed the activation check and started up. It seems to use a hardware identifier that’s part of the network card for activation.

 

 

 

 

‘OSStatus error -9459’ When Attempting To Export iPhoto Slideshow

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The Short Version: The process quits with an error if the display sleeps. Disabling the display sleep option works around the problem.

My wife spent hours working on an iPhoto Slideshow but ran into a problem. When she tried to export to iDVD the export process crashed.

I attempted to export the Slideshow to an MP4 file, thinking that perhaps it was a problem with the integration between iPhoto and iDVD. Somewhere in the process it failed and reported an error of “OSStatus error -9459”.

Despite the fact that it crashed I did have an error code to research at that point. I quickly hit upon one solution in a Mac Forums post offered by user 6string. The suggestion was simple: change the display sleep delay to “Never”.

My wife’s laptop wasn’t set to sleep but the display was. I made the change and fired off another export process. Once I know it’s successfully completed I’ll add an update to this post.

A Bad PS3 (Hard Drive)

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For the past several months I’ve had various problems with my Playstation 3. On a regular basis it would show corrupt file and disk warnings and then spend several minutes restoring the file system. I’ve tried formatting the drive but while downloading updates or trying to launch or play a game it would freeze. I followed several suggestions from various forums that recommended using the built-in recovery tools for the PS3.

Finally, I decided to put the original hard drive in it and remove the 250 GB drive I had installed. The original drive has worked perfectly since. The larger drive passed one scan test using a third-party program but showed a bad sector after scanning it with chkdsk in Windows 7. For now I’m just going to leave the original drive installed – I use the PS3 so infrequently these days I’m not sure if I’ll need a larger drive anyway.

Updated 07/12/2011: Based on my experience I’m left to conclude that either the PS3 file system is not capable of marking bad sectors and ignoring them, or the implementation is very poor. Essentially, this may mean that it doesn’t matter whether or not you run chkdsk in Windows. When the drive is re-inserted it will be formatted by the PS3. Since the marking of bad sectors appears to be a file system task then the information collected in Windows (or another OS using similar utilities) may simply be lost or ignored and the PS3 will continue to access the bad sector.

The 250 GB drive I was using only had one sector detected as bad, but it was enough to cause numerous problems when installed in the PS3.