Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Moving to

its been a while, and i finally decided to get back into research and into blogging all about it
while taking the more serious approach i finally went for my own domain

come visit me at my new home :

To make it easier for existing subscribers, the RSS Feeds now direct to the new site.


Friday, March 16, 2012

Using the new iPad for Work

I decided to stop carrying my laptop to business meetings. no use. I got to a point where I feel that I carry a bulky bag full of unneeded  cables adapters and others where the only time I need it is when my clients require my hands-on expertise.

today with the purchase of the new iPad ( 3rd generation ) I completely move away from carrying a laptop, and this is how I am going to fulfill my business needs on the go :


1. Backoffice email/calendar/notes are all handled by the native software anyway so that’s a fairly easy task

2. Dropbox holds all documents that I sometimes send clients or require to answer a question, and I can access it from the iPad.

3. I take Notes in meetings using Evernote, which I then use the desktop client to view when im at my desk working on my pc.

4. Presentations are completely solved using SlideShark application which converts the PPT/PPTX to their format, then gives me the exact same quality of presentation and animation of powerpoint ( I use apple’s VGA adapter to present )

5. GoodReader, is my file orchestrator, it connects everywhere ! to my company FTP, to my Dropbox, to my Googledocs, and to my shares when available. I use it to read documents from all sources, keep local copies if needed, and I use it to trigger external readers ( “Open In…” feature, that’s how I open slides in SlideShark )

there is probably more, but for now – that’s my solution to computing on the day-2-day business on the go, without carrying the bulk.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

SC2ReplayHandler – contribution to the SC2 community

For those who know me, I grew up playing computer games and kind of never stopped. about 1.5yrs ago one of my favorite games came out which was Starcraft 2, and has become the only game I play.

So why do I blog about it ? I believe that everyone have their own skills and abilities to make things they like into bigger things, mine is coding I guess..

I created a tool that automatically renames ingame replay files based on parsed metadata of the replay files, and posted it on the biggest community site –

I present to you : SC2ReplayHandler ( soon to be open source )

just a small tool that hooks to Windows’s event dispatcher for identifying when new replay files arrive, then parses them and renames them based on patterns defined by the user.

hope you like.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Checking if a Stream is Online/Offline (PHP)

For the past year I have been watching SOOO many streams online. it got to a point where it almost completely replaces my TV view time.

as of 2011 the main streaming sites for video games are Justin.TV, Own3d.TV, Regame.TV.

all of these sites allow you to stream video over RTMP, and have become very popular with many sites and companies embedding such mechanisms to broadcast video on demand, and live streaming of events and games/tournaments.

each site therefor has its own API for developers/site builders to be able to embed things from their streams, and the most basic thing is an ONLINE Indicator.

so my 0.02 cents here will be to list functions that will enable you to have an Online indicator for each of the above, hoping that its saves some time…

for the examples, I used PHP for some quick and dirty coding.

for Justin.TV --

//justintv status check
function justinTVcheck ($channelName) {
$channelName = strtolower($channelName);
$json_file =" . $channelName;
$json = file_get_contents($json_file);
if (strpos($json, 'name')) {
return (1); //online
} else {
return (0); //offline

for own3d.TV --

//own3d status check
function ownedTVcheck ($channelName) {
$request = '';
$arg = $channelName;
$session = curl_init($request.$arg);
curl_setopt($session, CURLOPT_HEADER, false);
curl_setopt($session, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, true);
$response = curl_exec($session);

if (preg_match("/true/",$response, $result)) {
return (1); //online
} else {
return (0); //offline

for regame.TV --

//regame status check
function regameTVcheck ($channelName) {
$url = '';
$arg = $channelName;
$xml = simplexml_load_file($url.$arg);
if (strcmp($status,'true')==0) {
return (1); //online
} else {
return (0); //offline

pretty straight forward, functions return 1 if the stream is online, and 0 if not. and should be easily transferable to other languages.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

StarCraft 2 GPU Overheating FIX

For those of that have been playing StarCraft 2 for the past few weeks since the release, you might have noticed that your GPU is overheating due to a game engine problem.

Although the solution to it is quite simple and can be found in many places ( including bottom of this post ) I have decided to go and explain the problem, and not just the solution.

Lets first explain how a graphics engine works ( super high level ) :

  • once all graphics are loaded to the graphics card memory, the math/physics engine is then able to start drawing the frame. given all inputs from the game engine and the scene.
  • The frame is then being calculated based on the scene and objects, and at the end its being drawn on the screen.
  • Obviously some cards are fasted and can draw frames at a much higher frame rate… but that means that the game will be out of sync, or will be really fast, so there is a time axis synchronization on the top of it. so if your computer’s GPU is slow, you will play at the same rate, but will see less frames, or less of a smooth movement.

The Problem :

In StarCraft 2, the game has no frame limit by nature, which is very noticeable in the game’s Menus and empty terrains with no/few units …

What happens is that the GPU has all of the graphics, but has nearly no calculations to make in order to build the frame to draw, so it can draw a lot more frames in less time, which just heats the GPU and may cause black screens/crashes of the system.

The Fix :

Blizzard the magnificent who already got lots of questions from its customers, has offered a solution, which is to edit the “Documents'\StarCraft II\Variables.txt” file and add the two following lines :


This effectively adds a frame rate limiter to the game, and holds it from drawing too many frames, if you got a strong GPU, you may want to adjust the values up a notch. Thanks Blizzard, GG.

Labels: ,

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Starcraft 2 - 0day Download Experience - Boosted

The wonderful Starcraft 2 Wings of Liberty has been released earlier this week, and as a hardcore fan of the original game, wanted to get it just as it roll out, which meant the environmental way of downloading a digital copy.

If you happen to know Blizzard ( the magnificent ! ), their distribution tool is based on 2 channels, one which is the direct downloader over HTTP, and the other which is P2P based. which is the main issue when a new game rolls out, since there werent enough ppl that could share parts, and thus rendered the download for me ( in Israel ) to 90Kbps total, which is about 900Kbps under my acceptable ratio.

So i decided to go for the following – first i will download over a VM in the normal way ( so i could share like a normal user ), but i wanted to play right away (why else would i buy at day 0 ? :) so i had a second download running in the same time on my main computer, which i wanted to “tweak”.

sc2-3 The direction for me was to disable the P2P vector on my main computer, so i could download only from the HTTP source, which then climbs the the limits, and so i did.

When looking into the Log in the downloader i found the tracker ( the distributor of the list that is used to connect beteen the P2P users ) and found it to be

then i ran a DNS Lookup on the FQDN of : and got back a single resolution to -

In the following step, i configured a Firewall Rule to block any traffic from my computer to that IP Address, in order to prevent the sharing distribution.

sc2-2The result was easy , the few seconds after the rule as been configured, the P2P connections dropped, and the entire download reverted to HTTP, which then made the download climb to 500KBPS, and eventually to 1.1MBPS

so i still let the VM download, so i would share the bits to let other users play, but i also started enjoying this fantastic game right away!.

Way to go Blizzard !

Labels: , , , ,

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

How To Downgrade Windows 7 Ultimate to Professional

Recently, I had to build a workstation for myself that is based on Windows, and will be able to replace my laptop for some home office tasks. and i had a Windows 7 Ultimate trial that i was playing with for a few days, and already installed lots of the required software, and figured i will then just need a license for it and continue to work…

The day has come, and the trial period expired, when i discovered that the only license i actually have is for a Professional edition. so i though, the best way will be to downgrade the system, should be easy right ?

The Windows installation mechanism works only in one direction, from lower to higher , so you can upgrade from Home to Professional , and from Professional to Ultimate for example, but not the other way around.

If you try to use the Upgrade tool, it will halt on this limitation , and will pop up a message like “Windows 7 Ultimate cannot be upgraded to Windows 7 Professional” and asks you to run a fresh install …

Well, there is a solution that involves some Windows Registry editing, which can nail this sucker down.


  1. using the Start menu, type “regedit” and go to \HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion
  2. you will get the following registry values that you need to alter
  3. change the values of
    1. value of “EditionID” from “Ultimate” to “Professional”
    2. value of “ProductName” from “Windows 7 Ultimate” to “Windows 7 Professional”
  4. The Windows 7 Upgrade utility will be now fooled , and you can upgrade with no real issue.

Labels: , ,


    My Name is Barry Shteiman, im a devoted tech junkie, and this is my blog.
    E: barry.shteiman -at-
    Twitter : bshteiman

Tags & Categories

Mailing List & RSS

Stay Updated  
Add to Technorati Favorites