Cisco AnyConnect – VPN establishment capability from remote desktop is disabled

Cisco AnyConnect Virtual Machine Error

If you are trying to to use Cisco AnyConnect through a Windows Virtual PC and receiving the following message

VPN establishment capability from remote desktop is disabled.  A VPN connection will not be established.

This is what I did to get it functional.

Go to your virtual machines and edit the Settings.

  • Under Networking, ensure that you are using Share Networking (NAT)
  • Under Integration Features, ensure that Enable at startup is NOT checked

Now, if you launch your virtual machine Cisco AnyConnect should connect (at least it did for me).

That said, having to disable the Integration Features in this manner, to me, is a serious PITA!  You can’t even copy/pastes or utilize your main PC’s hard drive to access files…  I don’t know the underlying issues, but this to me is a MAJOR problem.

2015 Microsoft MVP Virtual Conference

2015 Microsoft MVP Virtual Conference Banner

Do you want to learn some new tricks from some of the very best technological experts in the world, and best of all, for FREE!  Then join us at the first ever Microsoft Americas MVP Virtual Conference!

Fellow MVPs will be sharing their knowledge on a wide variety of MS products and services in this two day bonanza.

So, what exactly is the Microsoft MVP Virtual Conference?

A world-class free online conference that features technical content presented by Americas’ region MVPs that is open to the public

  • More technical content (Level 200, 300, 400), less marketing
  • 5 tracks: IT Pro English, Dev English, Consumer English, Mixed Spanish, Mixed Portuguese
  • Event will be broadcast via Lync using L+ which enhances the conferencing capabilities of Lync
  • Two full days of sessions with simultaneous webcasts running across all 5 tracks
  • Thursday May 14th and Friday, May 15th
  • Start at 8am PT and running until 6pm PT (Pacific)
  • Day 1: 45 sessions + Keynote, Day 2: 50 sessions
  • Keynote on Day 1 to be delivered by Steve ‘Guggs’ Guggenheimer, Corporate VP of DX
  • On Demand content available via Channel9
  • This event is not just for MVPs, it’s for everyone!

Come join in the fun!  To learn more, and/or register, use the following link:

Microsoft Americas MVP Virtual Conference

FMS Inc – Total Access Detective – Review

One benefit of being an Microsoft Access MVP is the fact that I get to interact with fellow MVPs and have access to certain promotions.

In the past couple of years, I have had the pleasure of communicating with Luke Chung, president of FMS Inc, and benefiting from his offer of NFR licenses of FMS’ software. The more I get the opportunity to try his software, the more I must say I am impressed.

I recently had the need to compare multiple back-end files to identify any differentiations between them.
At first I started thinking that the tasks wouldn’t necessarily be too complex to perform, even manually if need be. But further thought may me realize my initial conclusion was simply erroneous. It is obviously easy to identify missing tables, but identifying missing fields, fields that have changed, properties that have changed, and so much more, all sorts of minor tweaks that occur over the lifetime of a database quickly made any form of manual analysis unrealistic.

Then I remembered once noticing on Luke’s website a tool, Total Access Detective. I made a request to have a license and within a few minutes I had my copy to try out.

Installation

Firstly, the installation went smoothly. A simple executable that you launch, it ask you to install the software for just the current user or all users on the machine and then it installs. Nothing could be easier.

Usage

  1. Launch the ‘Database Compare’ module through the Start Menu
  2. Specified which objects to compare
  3. Specified which 2 databases to compare
  4. Let Total Access Detective do its thing!

I was actually quite surprised at the speed at which it was able to perform the in-depth analysis. In a matter of a minute or two, I had all my answers!

Once the analysis was complete, I simply clicked on the View, Filter and Print Comparison Results button and select which category of results I wished to review in detail.

FMS Total Acccess Detective Analysis Summary

FMS Total Access Detective View Menu

FMS Total Access Detective Object Differences

FMS Total Access Detective Unmatched Objects

The tool made very short work providing me with very detailed listing of missing objects, and differences between existing objects, even relationships.

Final Verdict

I am once again quite confident in putting my stamp of approval on this tool. If you are in a situation in which you quickly need to identify all the differences between multiple databases, FMS’ Total Access Detective will make short work of the job at hand!

Thank you Luke for allowing me to take it for a test drive. A very nice, easy to use and most importantly, effective and thorough tool!

MS Access – VBA – SaveAsText Error 3709

Well the ambiguous error reporting from Access hit me again! It really makes one wonder who at MS comes up with which error to throw when problems occur and how they retain their job.

I have been recently trying to address a corrupted databases and finally decided that using the undocumented SaveAsText and LoadFromText functions was my last hope before having to start the database over again. So I went ahead a punched in my command:

Application.SaveAsText acForm, "MyFormName", "C:\...\MyFormName.txt"

Upon executing the command I received the following:

Run-time error ‘3709’:
The search key was not found in any record.

Run-time error 3709 - The search key was not found in any record.

What the?! Can’t find what search key in what record? Is this the underlying issues with the form and why is has corrupted in the first place?

No. The issue has nothing to do with an index or any record. The most irrelevant error I have ever seen coming from Access (and I have seen some truly useless error messages being output by MS Access in the past). The problem after a quick test was simply due to the fact that the VBA project was protected and I had not unlocked the project with the appropriate password. So for anyone else trying to perform a SaveAsText and getting this ridiculous error message, ask yourself did you unlock the VBA project. If not, do so and try again.

Now that we solved this problem, hopefully someone at Microsoft could start providing error messages pertinent to the actual problem at hand, but I’m not holding my breath on that one!

MS Access – VBA – Close All Open Forms

In some cases it may be useful to close all the forms within a database.

Why you might ask, one example would be to ensure you close all connection to the back-end prior to working with it.

'---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
' Procedure : CloseAllOpenFrms
' Author    : Daniel Pineault, CARDA Consultants Inc.
' Website   : http://www.cardaconsultants.com
' Purpose   : Close all the currently open forms in the database
' Copyright : The following may be altered and reused as you wish so long as the
'             copyright notice is left unchanged (including Author, Website and
'             Copyright).  It may not be sold/resold or reposted on other sites (links
'             back to this site are allowed).
'
' Usage:
' ~~~~~~
' Call CloseAllOpenFrms
'
' Revision History:
' Rev       Date(yyyy/mm/dd)        Description
' **************************************************************************************
' 1         2015-02-17                  Initial Release
'---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Function CloseAllOpenFrms()
    On Error GoTo Error_Handler
    Dim DbF                   As Access.Form
    Dim DbO                   As Object
 
    Set DbO = Application.Forms    'Collection of all the open forms

    For Each DbF In DbO    'Loop all the forms
            DoCmd.Close acForm, DbF.Name, acSaveNo
    Next DbF
 
Error_Handler_Exit:
    On Error Resume Next
    Set DbF = Nothing
    Set DbO = Nothing
    Exit Function
 
Error_Handler:
    MsgBox "The following error has occured." & vbCrLf & vbCrLf & _
           "Error Number: " & Err.Number & vbCrLf & _
           "Error Source: CloseAllOpenFrms" & vbCrLf & _
           "Error Description: " & Err.Description, _
           vbCritical, "An Error has Occured!"
    Resume Error_Handler_Exit
End Function

Blocking SPAM from Known Domains in Outlook

As per my previous posting on the subject, for some reason, I have been getting hit recently by SPAM.

HARP Refinance <HARPRefinance@businessthere.eu>
Sitting Solution <SittingSolution@pappend.xyz>
SittingSolution <SittingSolution@lendorate.xyz>
BizCashPros <bizcashpros@fuud-eaat.eu>
Diet Notice <DietNotice@laseral.xyz>
Diet Notice <DietNotice@dashend.xyz>
Diet Notice <DietNotice@pemender.xyz>
Diet Notice <DietNotice@huffinter.xyz>
SittingSolution.com <SittingSolution.com@jakery.xyz>
SittingSolution.com <SittingSolution.com@menastad.xyz>
Curves <Curves@lewaster.xyz>
Curves <Curves@mengert.xyz>
6MinutestoSkinny <6MinutestoSkinny@laserbym.xyz>
6MinutestoSkinny <6MinutestoSkinny@lefferal.xyz>
and so on…

Now, originally, I would simply click on the Junk e-mail option to Block Sender.  The issue with this is that these SPAMmers never use the same e-mail account twice, so this is completely ineffective.

So by examining the sources of the problem, we can very quickly find a nice pattern,  all the SPAM is comming from .xyz and .eu domains.  Knowing this we can use Outlook’s Blocked Senders to build a simple pattern to block them all!  Here’s how it is done.

On the Home tab on the Ribbon, click on the Junk drop-down

Outlook 2013 - RibbonClick on the Junk E-mail Options…

Outlook 2013 - Ribbon - Junk E-mail Options MenuGoto the Blocked Senders Tab, followed by the Add… button

Outlook 2013 - Junk E-mail Options DialogThen simply add the domain suffix for the domain to block in the provided textbox.

Outlook 2013 - Junk E-mail Options Add address or domain to blocked sender listingFinally simply click OK twice to return back to Outlook.

 

It’s that easy.  Since having taken this step, I no longer have to deal with any of the garbage sent by these perpetual SPAMmers as their e-mails go directly into my Junk E-mail folder.  Life is good once again!

 

Important Note:

  • In this example I am blocking outright any e-mail from a .xyz or .eu domain.  That said, you need to carefully examine which domains are SPAMming you and act accordingly by using their suffix.
  • Blocked e-mails are not deleted, but rather moved directly to the Junk E-mail folder.  As such, you should review the content of that folder from time to time to ensure no legitimate e-mails end up in there.
  • At any time you wish, you can go back into the Blocked Senders Tab of the Junk E-mail Options… dialog and highlight an entry and simply delete it by clicking on the Remove button.  So nothing is permanent and you can undo this process at any time.

Stellar Phoenix Access Database Repair Review

Stellar Phoenix Access Database Repair

I was approached by Stellar Phoenix to review their Access Database Repair software.

After performing a few tests, here are my thoughts on the matter:

Password Encrypted Files

Stellar Phoenix Access Database Repair - Not a Valid MS Access fileThe first hurdle that I faced was the fact that I encrypt most of my databases with a password. Sadly, Access Database Repair cannot work with such files! To me this is a major limitation.

Recovering Deleted Records

One of the nice feature was the fact that Access Repair offers the ability to recover deleted records.  That said, the way in which it works had me very confused.  It offers no way to reinserted the deleted records back into the originating table, but rather one must save the recovered database in which a new table will be created with the deleted records.  It is not the way I would have built the software, but it does work and then you can use queries to recover the records of interest.

As per other freely available recovery techniques, it is impossible to recover deleted records once a database is compacted.

File Corruption

File corruption comes in all sorts of shapes and forms.  One form of corruption that I recently was faced with was the fact that an unknown user had erroneously open an MS Access database in MS Word (why, I have no clue).  By doing so, the MS Access database became corrupted and no longer functioned.  I then checked with fellow MVPs and was surprised that this occurs more often than I thought.  So I decided to try to recover a recently corrupted database using Stellar Phoenix, but it was unable to recover the file stating:

Stellar Phoenix Access Database Repair - Not a Valid MS Access file

I also tried to repair a database which had a corrupted form.  What the exact nature of the form corruption was is unknown to me, but I do know that it became corrupted.  Sadly, Access Database Repair was unable to fix the problem.

 

I then sent an e-mail to my point of contact at Stellar Phoenix to ask for clarifications and below was the list of corruptions that they claim Access Database Repair Addresses:

Symptom 1: Cannot open a form or report
Symptom 2: Number of records varies, depending how the data is sorted (index corruption)
Symptom 3: Some table rows show ‘Deleted’
Symptom 4: Memo field contains strange characters.
Symptom 5: “An error occurred while loading Form_FormName”
Symptom 6: “Error Accessing File. Network Connect May Have Been Lost”
Symptom 7: “AOIndex is not an index in this table”
Symptom 8: Key field is no longer primary key, and relationships are gone

 

Conclusions

I’m not sure what to think.  I will need to do further testing to truly know how effective a tool Access Database Repair truly is.

My other thought on the matter is that in many cases, the solutions to many (if not all) of the symptoms is freely available and various resources exist to help.  For instance:

For me, corruption, the possibility of corruption, simply reinforce the critical importance of Backups for all files (not just MS Access databases)!  By implementing a proper backup strategy, the repair of corrupted files becomes unnecessary.

 

more to come…

Smart Inderter Not Working in Office 2010, 2013

VBA Smart Indenter

If you do any serious VBA development, you should have heard, and installed, Office Automation Ltd’s Smart Indenter.  If you haven’t you should!  It is an exceptional FREE tool that helps properly indent your code to help with code legibility & standardization.  It offers numerous customizable options to suit your specific needs.

That said, I recently tried installing on a machine with Office 2013 and it would not work!?  What to do.

After so going back and forth with Mz-Tools (another must have VBA developer tool), I finally got it operational.

Now, I do not know exactly why or how, but the only conclusion I could come up with is the order of installation somehow fixes whatever the underlying problem is/was.  You must install Mz-Tools first and then Smart Indenter.  Smart Indenter on its’ own does not work, nor does installing Mz-Tools subsequently.  After trying different variations, the one that appear to have “fixed” the problem was to uninstall the Smart Indenter & Mz-Tools, then reinstall Mz-Tools followed by Smart Indenter.

So the conclusion drawn from my experience, it would appear, is that  Mz-Tools must be installed first!

 

If you have any insight into the nature of the problem (perhaps even an alternate solution) or if you can confirm my fix, please post a comment.