Adobe Acrobat Pro (CS6) Stops Opening in Windows

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I recently ran into an odd little problem while working with a copy of Adobe Acrobat Pro (installed as part of a CS6 suite) in Windows. In this case both the problem and the solution were specific to when I had installed Acrobat and the platform that I was using at the time. This particular instance of Windows 8.1 wasn’t very old – all of the data had recently been transferred from a Windows 7 system.

Sometime last week, while attempting to view a PDF file from within Outlook, the installed copy of Acrobat X simply quit working. It didn’t fail with an error. It simply didn’t launch. My other Adobe CS6 applications continued to work just fine. This sudden change in behavior was a bit alarming at first but it didn’t take me very long to identify the problem.

It seems that, for whatever reason, Acrobat encountered a problem when it had passed the initial 30-day trial period. This is even more of an oddity considering that I had never set it up to act as a trial – the product key was correctly entered when I originally installed the software.

While searching for a solution I stumbled upon an Adobe support document (possibly linked from a forum post somewhere) that describes the problem I was having and it also offers a file to fix the problem. In my case Solution 1 worked perfectly. Acrobat Pro now opens once again. The link to the support document is included below:

Acrobat Help / Doesn’t launch after 30 days | Installed as part of a CS6 suite

 

Accessing Windows 7 VPN Server When DHCP Fails (PPTP)

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The Short Version: If your VPN client fails to obtain an IP address via DHPC when connecting to a Windows 7 VPN server using PPTP, it may be possible to connect to the server over RDP by accessing it at 169.254.128.230 if your client is assigned an IP in the same network range.

Last night I was logged into my Windows 7 desktop system back home, which runs my home automation software and acts as a VPN server. I recently had to setup the VPN server again and was trying to troubleshoot the problem of VPN clients not receiving DNS server addresses from the server.

At one point I changed the server configuration from providing a specific range of IP addresses to instead provide IPs via DHCP. After making this change I could still connect to the VPN but my client received a 169.254.128.x address and I could no longer access the server over RDP at the previous address.

I was accustomed to thinking of the 169.254.x.x range as being a sign of a problem and not as a useable network range so I kept trying to access the original, internal network via various methods (trying to override my VPN client assigned IP, using a virtual machine with a shared network connection but on the original network). I even tried to RDP to 169.254.128.1 but it also failed.

Finally, at some point I realized that there was an entry for a default gateway in my VPN client settings. In my case it was pointing to 169.254.128.230. I’m not sure if this is always the case.

When I entered this address into the RDP client I was able to connect and then set the server back to distributing the specific range of IP addresses that were previously defined, instead of using DHCP.

I haven’t resolved the original problem but I was able to get back into the machine and restore the VPN setting.

Xbox 360 Wireless Network Adapter Won’t Connect to Xbox Live

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The Short Version: I can make it work by selecting “Connect to Xbox Live”, letting it fail the test, and then choosing the option to test the connection to Xbox Live. After it completes successfully I can then connect to Xbox Live. I never found a solution to this problem.

Rather than deal with this problem indefinitely I removed the Microsoft adapter and now I’m using an ethernet to wifi bridge device, which works perfectly.

Several months ago I moved the Xbox 360 into a different room. Rather than run another network device for the only console that doesn’t have built-in wireless (I have an older model) I decided to purchase an Xbox 360 Wireless Network Adapter.

It works, but not perfectly. I haven’t identified the cause yet. It could be a compatibility issue with my Apple Airport Extreme Base Station though it may be something very obscure. It doesn’t receive a very strong WiFi signal but I wouldn’t rate as being weak.

Whenever I start the Xbox 360 up it no longer automatically logs into Xbox Live (despite being configured to do so). In addition, it won’t connect to Xbox Live just by clicking the appropriate tile.

The only way I can make it connect using the WiFi adapter is to select the option to test the connection to Xbox Live, after it fails to connect.

After the test successfully completes I can then back up to the main menu and sign into Xbox Live without problems.

Updated 06/25/2012: I still haven’t found a permanent fix for this issue. It’s as though the USB wifi adapter simply doesn’t wake up when I turn on the Xbox 360. I have to run a connection test every time to get it working. The issue isn’t caused by the Airport Extreme Base Station. It took a hit to some ethernet ports recently and is no longer in line. I’m still experiencing the same problem with my ASUS wireless router.

Updated 12/10/2012: I sold it to a friend recently and he reports that he doesn’t have this same issue. I suspect that the wifi signal where my Xbox system is located is rather weak, which creates problems for the Xbox adapter. I’m currently using an IOGear device with the Xbox and it seems to be able to connect to Xbox Live automatically at start-up.

Resolving Problems Syncing iPhone App Docs with iCloud (When Using Multiple, Migrated MobileMe Accounts)

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I migrated our MobileMe accounts to iCloud the day it was released, after updating my iPhone to iOS 5. I was using two accounts. One account is my primary and I synched mail, calendars, contacts, etc using it. I had another account that I only used for e-mail.

Overall, my transition to iOS 5 and migration of the accounts went without any major issues.

Well, that was the case until I tried to use Pages, Numbers, and Keynote on the iPhone with the new iCloud sync capability. For each app I turned on the “Use iCloud” option but every time I opened one of the apps the setting reverted back to off and in the iCloud Website it just showed the intro pages for the apps.

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Owning an iRobot Roomba 415 (Discovery)

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Updated 04/11/2012: I’ve reversed my opinion on using the Roomba on wood floors, especially in an old home. Lately I started to notice that the finish of the floors in all rooms no longer appears as thick and shiny as it did when we first moved into the house. This includes the rooms we recently refinished.

The final piece of evidence is the near lack of finish around some of the air vents, which are places where the Roomba frequently gets hung up. I’m convinced that repeated runs of the Roomba brush across the floors has eroded the finish much faster than would normally occur from foot traffic.

I’ve stopped using the Roomba on the wood floors but it still gets some use on the tiled areas.

About two years ago, just after we purchased our home, I bought an iRobot Roomba 415. It was on sale at Woot for about $120, which was a good price at the time. Even then it wasn’t the newest model but I was confident that it would work well.

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Philips DVD Player Changes TV Source Whenever Using the DVD Remote (Workaround)

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Note: Most of this information is probably only applicable to households with a Philips TV and DVD player.

Tonight I ran into an unexpected problem. While trying to watch a DVD in our bedroom the TV input was changed from HDMI2 (where the living room sources are connected) to HDMI1 (where nothing is connected). It happened any time I tried to pause or play the movie. In fact, it seemed to happen every time I pressed any button on the remote.

I quickly eliminated the possibility of the DVD remote sending signals to the TV by preventing the IR from reaching the TV. The problem still occurred.

After a moment I remembered another problem we previously encountered in which the DVD player was turning the TV back on a moment after the TV was turned off. I neglect to post about the issue but long story short the EasyLink capability built into both Philips devices caused the TV to turn back on if the DVD player was still on (or was in the process of shutting down). The solution was to turn the DVD player off before powering off the TV (since then I’ve also shut off the available EasyLink options in the DVD player).

Tonight’s problem seems to be related. I disabled the DVD players EasyLink functions. However, even though the TV appears to have EasyLink support the setup menu does not include any options to disable it.

I noticed that when the TV source is changed by the DVD player it always reverts to HDMI1. Before I purchased the matrix switch we only used the DVD player in the bedroom, where it was connected on HDMI1. At that point I realized the DVD player’s behavior hadn’t actually changed. We hadn’t noticed it before because it was already on HDMI1 and tonight was the first time we had tried to play a DVD since adding the switch.

It’s not a true fix, but the workaround was simply to move the incoming living room HDMI connection from HDMI2 over to HDMI1 on the bedroom TV. Now the DVD player appears to operate as expected without changing the TV source.