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antlersoft log of technical obscurities
September 2, 2008

If you are getting a "heap mismatch" error when starting a program compiled with cygwin (especially if it includes non-cygwin libraries) you might work around this by starting it from DOS instead of cygwin: i.e. cmd /c program argument1...

Aug 20, 2008

When using Oracle 11g client with .Net using tnsnames.ora binding, you might get ORA-12545 Connect failed because target host or object does not exist errors. This can be corrected by turning LOADBALANCE = off (from on) in the tnsnames.ora file for the affected server. In this forum thread. If you see the same problem in Squirrel-SQL, you might make sure the connection strings says oci and not oci8.

Aug 18, 2008

To change the Visual SourceSafe home directory for an entire Visual Studio solution at once, replace it in the mssccprj.scc file for each project and the solution.

May 11, 2008

An update to the faac codec broke (silently, oh so silently)-- ffmpeg conversions of videos to ipod format. The video converts properly and it plays normally in mplayer and ffplay, but when you transfer it to the ipod there is no sound.

Rebuilding ffmpeg with the new faac library solves the problem.

December 20, 2007

Have you some old gimp script-fu scripts that have disappeared from your gimp menus? The gimp's scripting language has tightened up, and some old scripts don't work anymore. Find a collection of fixes at

July 24, 2007

Surprisingly hard to find: to enable multicast routing on your Linux machine (necessary for things that depend on UPnP, like DVArchive), you need to add the route for it:

route add -net netmask dev eth0

Also, the default Gentoo build of tomcat doesn't work with the eclipse tomcat plugin. To make it work, make sure that you are part of the tomcat group (so you can see the tomcat config directory) and add symbolic links to /usr/share/tomcat-x.y/common and /usr/share/tomcat-x.y/bin to /var/lib/tomcat-x.y

The list of files the eclipse plugin checks is in in the tomcat plugin.

July 16, 2007

LoadLibrary failed - This application has failed to start because the application configuration is incorrect. Reinstalling the application may fix the problem. had the answer. It seems that some versions of Visual Studio add a manifest to .dll's that break on some configurations of windows. The solution to the specific problem I encountered was to turn off embedding the manifest in the dll; project properties, manifest tool, input/output, embed manifest set to no.

July 16, 2007

The Beginning

This log will record the solutions to really obscure technical problems and where I got them from. The problems I'm talking are the ones you learn nothing useful from solving and forget about right away. You don't want to remember anything about them, much less the obscure, undocumented explanation-- but you have a nagging suspicion that you might have to solve again-- once, three years in the future. They're not worth a memory, not worth an ordinary bookmark, but are worth an entry here. Plus, by linking to the page where I found some help, I potentially boost its page-rank, helping others find it.