Archive for April, 2009

Fixing W32.Pinfi On Our Network

This was perhaps the most satisfying thing I have done while at MICA.

Let me give some background.  Prior to working at MICA I believed one could live without a virus scanner.  I had managed to evade virii all through college, and then continue to evade them by not clicking on the attachments in my email that were clearly virii.  Upon arrival to MICA my machine became so hosed with this W32.Pinfi virus that I needed to reformat it.  I got infected by our department file shares.  Since then I have found it prudent to use a virus scanner.

Now, 2 years later, I have finally found the source of this virus which has been infecting our public website, PeopleSoft Application Servers, and file shares for years.

I ended up finding this when we reformatted one of the frequently infected machines.  Within a day of the machine being back on the network it was completely reinfected with the virus.  I found in the windows event log the login audit for the machine responsible for reinfected our servers, and took it off line.

Coincidentally this machine was also a backdoor into our network.  I insisted it be disabled, since people could use our VPN–the legitimate way to get onto our network.

April 29, 2009 • Tags: , • Posted in: Technology • No Comments

miisactivate.exe file loaction.

Recently we had our MIIS server renamed, when the server became a dedicated server.  Little did I know that this would prevent the service from starting on the computer.  The error in the event log on the server indicated that I needed to run the miisactivate.exe file in order to fix this issue.  I found this article on how to use miisactivate.exe.

While the article was useful, I had a little trouble finding the actual EXE file.  The technet article on Microsoft’s site says usage of this file is available in the MIIS 2003 Developer Reference, however no amount of searching through the Developer Reference would reveal where the file was.

Ultimately I found the file in this folder:

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Identity Integration Server\Bin

This is the default installation directory, so you may need to adjust the folder path.

April 22, 2009 • Tags: , • Posted in: Technology • 2 Comments

Why I Love SpeakEasy… and hate Verizon.

For the last two weeks I have been trying to get my DSL switched to my new address.  I use SpeakEasy, which for the most part is a slightly more expensive version of Verizon, except with customer support that will talk with you.

Last week, after the Verizon guy came last week he told me that Comcast had screwed up the wiring, and he wasn’t going to fix it.  Further more I needed to call Comcast, Verizon, or “do it yourself.”  That was kind of great, if I needed to do any of that.

I called SpeakEasy, and after about a week I got the transcript at the end of this post from them (long, but I find it worth the read).  The short of it is, Verizon did shitty job 3 times, SpeakEasy escalated the issue to upper management, and (I believe, some of the code is a bit much for me) called in an independent contractor to finish the job.

They did this all without charging me an installation fee.

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

Progress Report:

04/17/2009 10:45 AM (from Covad)
Install Scheduled
The Covad installation appointment has been pre-scheduled for 4/22/2009
between 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.. During this appointment, a Covad
technician will run your new DSL line from the telephone box into your
office, configure the router, connect it to the newly installed data
jack, and test Internet access using a Covad laptop. This usually takes
about 1 hour.
Please note that this installation date is tentative until we confirm
successful delivery of your data line from the telephone company. If
there are delays or issues with the telephone company data line, we
will need to reschedule your Covad installation appointment. If this is
necessary, we will give you at least 24 hours notice.

04/17/2009 10:42 AM (from Covad)
Close Trouble Ticket
Trouble Ticket was closed on April 17, 2009 10:42:31 AM.

04/17/2009 10:41 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Verizon East (South) technician has called for co-op testing and the
issue has been resolved. The loop was testing good at 13700 ft. We have
closed the Trouble Ticket with them and are moving the order to Covad
install.
Case Number: 1877213
Thank you,
Covad Provisioning

04/17/2009 06:25 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Verizon has informed us that they are still working on the troubler
ticket we had opened to prove continuity. They have also informed us
that the ticket is pre-assigned to a technician. They will be
completing the necessary work by today. Hence next update will be
provided by 12 PM EST 04/20/2009
Thank you,
Kuldeep,
Covad Provisioning.

04/16/2009 11:54 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Verizon has advised that the loop has been delivered. However, the loop
does not meet Covad?s specifications at this time. Covad has opened a
trouble ticket for (04/17/2009) as the loop is failing for inductive
fault . Verizon’s time frame for repair is from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
If the Verizon misses the commit time frame, Covad Provisioning will
contact the Verizon 1st level management by 12 pm EST on (04/20/2009)
and update the status of this order further via work logs.
Thank You,
laxmi,
Covad Provisioning.

04/16/2009 11:10 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
***********FOLLOW UP
Called ISP / Zoe @ 800-556-5829 ext 2405 and left voice mail providing
the update.
Uma ,
Level 1 Escalation,
Covad Provisioning.

04/16/2009 11:08 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
***********FOLLOW UP
Opened an ILEC TT for dispatch out, remove load coils requesting ILEC
to call us for Co-op test. Provided the LCON for Ben Liyanage @
XXX-XXX-XXXX.
Called ILEC escalation and spoke to Tony. She informed that the
previous ILEC TT was referred to frame and frame returned the ticket
stating that there is no issue.
However Tony contacted their engineering department and informed that
there are no load coils on this pair. ILEC agent informed that the tech
would be dispatched to customer’s premise for Co-Op test.
If there is no update from ILEC by 7pm EST 04/17/2009 we would call
ILEC verify the status and update the work-logs by 12pm EST 04/18/2009.
Uma ,
Level 1 Escalation,
Covad Provisioning.

04/16/2009 10:56 AM (from Covad)
Open Trouble Ticket
A trouble ticket has been opened with our vendor on April 16, 2009
10:56:02 AM. Additional information will be provided by our vendor no
later than April 17, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST. We will provide additional
information as it becomes available.

04/16/2009 10:55 AM (from Covad)
Close Trouble Ticket
Trouble Ticket was closed on April 16, 2009 10:55:41 AM.

04/16/2009 10:43 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Successful Response

Trouble Ticket Create
Error Code 0000
Error Description Transaction completed successfully.
Additional Error Information
Customer Company Code COVD
Bundle ID LSWB410416200913422206335
State MD
Type of Line Prefix Special Serial Format
Trouble Isolated to the network side of the NID/ONT? Yes
Trouble Type Code 0615
Trouble Narrative DPO,Loop tst failing-Inductive fault,Remove Load
coils,Co-Op test req,R# 12970307,Tag&LocBen
Liyanage/Cust#=xxxxxxxxxx/AC=

N/A/AP=N/A
Customer Contact Person
Customer Contact Person: Name Covad
Customer Contact Person: Reach TN 87751718761
Customer Contact Person: Email
End Customer Contact Person
Contact at Premises Ben Liyanage
Contact at Premises TN XXXXXXXXX
Contact at Premises Email
Contact at Premises Fax
Contact at Premises Pager
End Customer Person
Premises Name \*BEN, \*LIYANAGE
Premises Address 5108 EUGENE AV BALTIMORE MD
Premises TN XXXXXXXXX
Premises Access Hours
Day Start Time End Time
Monday 09:00 AM 05:00 PM
Tuesday 09:00 AM 05:00 PM
Wednesday 09:00 AM 05:00 PM
Thursday 09:00 AM 05:00 PM
Friday 09:00 AM 05:00 PM

Dispatch Recommendation Dispatch Out
Trouble Analysis UNK
Test Result Code
Associated TN
Customer Circuit ID
Customer Trouble Ticket Number
Received Date and Time 04-16-2009 13:42 Eastern
Commitment Date and Time 04-17-2009 19:00 Eastern
Verizon Trouble Ticket Number **************
Verizon Supplied Repeat Report/Chronic Indicator No
Verizon Supplied Maintenance Plan
Verizon Supplied Service Protection Indicator
Working Condition of Line IE
Cable or CO Failure Information
Trouble Ticket Handle Code DISP/OUT
Telecommunications Service Priority
Uma ,
Level 1 Escalation,
Covad Provisioning.

04/16/2009 10:26 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Received call from Zoe at Speakeasy. ISP called in for the ILEC TT
status. Verified the ILEC database and found that the trouble ticket is
closed stating that there is no signal from CLEC at pot bay.
Informed ISP that would verify the information with the loop test and
acceptance department. Open another ILEC TT and escalate it with ILEC.
ISP informed that the LCON on the order and access hours on the order
are valid.
Informed ISP that would work the order and call her back and provide
her an update in next 4 business hours i.e. 5:30 pm EST 04/16/2009.

ISP acknowledged.
ISP call back number: 800-556-5829 ext 2405
Uma ,
Level 1 Escalation,
Covad Provisioning.

04/15/2009 12:23 PM (from Covad)
Manual type
Verizon has informed us that they are still working on the troubler
ticket we had opened to correct the loop issue(Inductive fault on
loop). They have also informed us that the ticket is pre-assigned to a
technician. They will be completing the necessary work by today. Hence
next update will be provided by 12PM EST 04/16/2009.
Thank you,
Kuldeep,
Covad Provisioning.

04/14/2009 10:50 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Verizon has advised that the loop has been delivered. However, the loop
does not meet Covad?s specifications at this time. Covad has opened a
trouble ticket for (04/15/2009) as the loop is failing for Inductive
fault . Verizon’s time frame for repair is from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
If the Verizon misses the commit time frame, Covad Provisioning will
contact the Verizon 1st level management by 12 pm EST on (04/16/2009)
and update the status of this order further via work logs.
Thank You,
laxmi,
Covad Provisioning.

04/14/2009 10:47 AM (from Covad)
Open Trouble Ticket
A trouble ticket has been opened with our vendor on April 14, 2009
10:47:56 AM. Additional information will be provided by our vendor no
later than April 15, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST. We will provide additional
information as it becomes available.

04/14/2009 07:32 AM (from Covad)
Manual type
Verizon East (South) technician called for test and acceptance. The
test failed forInductive fault on loop .The outside technician is
troubleshooting further and will call back to retest when the issue has
been resolved. If a call back is not received by 04/15/2009,we will
contact Telephone Company and update the log notes.
Thank you,
Covad Provisioning

04/07/2009 09:16 AM (from Speakeasy)
COVAD: Telco Date set: 14-APR-09 for order 12970307

04/07/2009 08:27 AM (from Covad)
EDI
Received supplement FOC date of 04-14-2009 But Order not in
SUP_FOC_RECV Workitem state
Remarks:null

04/07/2009 08:27 AM (from Covad)
EDI
Received FOC date 04-14-2009
Remarks:PER MILDRED, DRC, NO EDD FOR CNTR 183 AT THIS TIME.

04/07/2009 08:26 AM (from Covad)
FOC Received
We received a firm order commitment of April 14, 2009 between 8:00 a.m.
and 5:00 p.m. from the local telephone company for the delivery of a
new data line. This is the first step to getting your Covad broadband
service up and running.

04/06/2009 11:11 AM (from Covad)
Verify Address
The installation address for your order was verified on April 06, 2009
11:11:33 AM.

04/06/2009 10:33 AM (from Covad)
Install Order Accepted
We received your DSL installation Service Request on April 06, 2009
10:33:04 AM and have begun processing the request to your
specifications. Your request is currently in an unconfirmed state,
please allow up to 72 hours for Covad to receive confirmation from the
phone company. Please monitor the work logs for the request
confirmation note, whereby the order will be referred to as an
installation order. Should there be any delay in fulfilling your order,
we will promptly notify you.

04/06/2009 10:31 AM (from Speakeasy)
This note was sent to the vendor:
lcon is ben XXXXXXXXX

April 20, 2009 • Tags: , , , • Posted in: Technology • No Comments

Interesting ColdFusion Application Quirk

At MICA we have a ColdFusion custom tag that we use to brand our older legacy applications.  I recently needed to implement caching with cfhttp requests which is not delivered functionality within our custom tag, so I decided to store this cache in the application variable scope.  Upon doing this, I discovered that custom tags inherit the application of its invoking page.  Likewise, if you change the current application in the custom tag, the new application is passed back.

I was not exactly sure how the scoping would work out, but I found this mildly interesting.

April 14, 2009 • Tags: , • Posted in: Technology • No Comments

SSL Odities

We have been having a little trouble with our SSL certificate for our public website since the website redesign.  On the surface, everything seemed fine.  Various versions of IE and Firefox would display the website correctly, on both Mac and PC through an SSL connection.  Oddly enough however, when viewed with Safari on SSL we would get this fairly standard error:

This certificate was signed by an unknown authority.

Our certificate was clearly working on 3 out of 4 browsers (Firefox worked on both PC and Mac), yet safari seemed to be a stick in the mud.  After searching the internet for a solution for this, it seemed like all solutions for this dealt with the more common problem of this happening on all browsers, not just safari.

After poking through our Trusted Root Certification Authorities, it became apparent that our certificate for www.mica.edu was not actually listed there–despite the certficate being present and working for some browsers.

In order to fix this, we simply removed and reinstalled our certificate from Thawte.

April 10, 2009 • Tags: , , • Posted in: Technology • No Comments

Facebook Your Portal: Chronological Content vs. Pagelet Content

Recently I gave a presentation for the HEUG Alliance conference.  Since the HEUG website is fairly closed doors, I thought I would post the description, and my power point presentation here.

Description

This presentation will examine MICA’s switch to a portal based on events triggered by changes to a person’s Enrollment, Finance, and HR records. These events are then listed chronologically and contain links to direct calls to action.

This approach is more commonly seen on blog posts and social networking sites, but not portals which rely heavily on spatially sorted pagelet based content. This is a better organizational model since end-users are more interested in current events than the second pagelet to the right. Direct calls to action allow easier navigation to the PeopleSoft components that people are then interested in.

This concept was implemented with the use of the RSS standard, so that feeds from Campus Solutions, and Human Resources could be threaded and sorted together with other news sources on campus.

PowerPoint