What can I do about Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities

The Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities in the modern CPU processors have been on the news headline and caused quite some panic (here, here, here, and more) because the vulnerabilities can theoretically allow attackers to steal private information without user’s knowledge. Major OS vendors such as Microsoft, Google, Apple and Linux all started working on a patch on the OS level way before the vulnerabilities were released in public and the patches will soon be available to end users. Since the vulnerabilities are in the processor architecture design, the OS level patch can mitigate the security vulnerabilities, but  can undermine […]

Earn extra cash easily without extra work

Disclaimer: the article contains some referral links which will give me monetary incentives when you sign up the programs by using the links. You do not have to use my referral links, but I would greatly appreciate if you do. Holiday shopping is stressful and stretches everyone’s budget, including mine. But fortunately I have been earning extra cash throughout the year to prepare for the potential budget overhaul. I earned around $600 extra cash in a year WITHOUT much extra work and the key point here is I didn’t need to do much extra work to get the cash. If […]

How to switch to Linux from Windows gradually

This post is for those who had some experience with Linux or had tried Linux before, but never made up mind to switch to it. Linux has become better and better in every aspect of the operating system, especially with the new release of Ubuntu 17.10 and Linux Mint 18.3, I think it is the right time to dive into Linux and eventually switch to Linux from Windows. However, if you think you are still not ready to switch to Linux by going cold turkey, I will show you some ways that help you to gradually ease into the Linux […]

How to install Android 7 Nougat on Sprint HTC One M7 smartphone

I have a old HTC One M7 smartphone sitting there for two years and both HTC and Sprint have stopped releasing updates long time ago, so it is still running Android 5 Lollipop. There is no trade-in value for this phone and I feel like it is a waste to throw away the phone, so I decided to root it and install a custom ROM to see if it will work. After some research online I successfully installed CandyRom, which is a custom ROM for Android 7 Nougat. Now my old HTC One M7 is running smoothly with all the […]

Identifier is null or empty error when adding stored procedure in entity framework data model

You can add database tables and stored procedures in your Entity Framework data model, but you may encounter an ArgumentException error in Visual Studio when adding a stored procedure: An exception of type ‘System.ArgumentException’ occurred while attempting to update from the database. The exception message is: ‘Identifier is null or empty’ The error message is confusing because the actual cause of this error is that the stored procedure does not have a return value. In order to add a stored procedure in EF data model, EF will first try to execute the stored procedure in a special environment (so it […]

Session Cookie Does Not Contain the “Secure” Attribute

Recently we scanned one of our web applications by two famous source code analysis tools: Qualy’s Web Application Scanning tool and HPE’s Fortify Static Code Analyzer, but the results are different. Qualy’s WAS picked up one XSS security vulnerability and two information disclosure warnings, but HPE’s Fortify didn’t find anything vulnerable. It would be interesting to find out why, but I am not gonna cover that today. Today I would like to talk about one of the information disclosure warning titled Session Cookie Does Not Contain the “Secure” Attribute and how to fix it. If your web application uses cookies, then […]

CCleaner not clean, distributed with malware

CCleaner is a popular and powerful PC tool that helps users to clean up their PCs by deleting temporary files, emptying recycle bins, deleting registry leftovers after program uninstall, etc. The free version is at the top of the popular software list on FileHippo.com. On September 13, 2017, Cisco’s Talos cybersecurity reported that CCleaner has been distributed with malware for almost one month, and the infected version is the 32-bit version of CCleaner 5.33 which was released on August 15 and the 32-bit version of CCleaner Cloud 1.07.3191 released on August 24. Piriform, the company developed CCleaner, announced the security […]

How to add days, months, and years to a date in JavaScript

Several years ago I wrote a post about how to add days, months, and years in JavaScript, and it was a quick-and-dirty workaround for a project and I didn’t pay much attention to value checking when writing the JavaScript function. For example, if the old date is 07/19/2017 and you need to know what date it is after adding 25 days, the JavaScript function will throw an error because 07/44/2017 is not a valid date string. Similarly, if you add 6 months on the old date (07/19/2017) you will get an error too, instead of getting the correct date 01/19/2018. […]

Lock screen images for Samsung Galaxy S6 and Note5

Would you like to read an inspirational message from the Bible when you turn on the screen of your phone? I just made two lock screen images for Samsung Galaxy S6 and Note5 with the Bible verses: Philippians 4:13 and Proverbs 16:3. Here is what it looks like on my phone: If you want to download the images and use them for your lock screen, you can click here or the “Free Stuff” link from the top menu. I hope you like them.

Digitizing your photo prints with Google PhotoScan in one tap

Over the years I have taken many pictures to capture various precious moments in my life, such as the birth of my children, their first steps, and the first day of school etc., and the memories captured in the pictures bring me great joy every time I look at them. I didn’t have a digital camera 15 years ago (let alone a smartphone with good camera feature), so all my pictures taken back then were developed on photo prints. Some of the photo are securely stored in various albums but the rest are randomly scattered in different boxes and it […]