Windows Firewall–Block Foreign IP Addresses

If you admin any Windows Server and use tcpview utility, you will see lots of connection attempts to your server’s common connection ports (e.g. Remote Desktop port 3389).

It is a good idea to block connection attempts from foreign countries if you don’t expect to connect from abroad.


Problem: does not route properly. 

I gets a HTTP 404 error. 

The Requested URL: /CoM1


It turns out “COM1” is reserved by default.  The list of reserved URL include: COM1-9, LPT1-9, AUX, PRT, NUL, CON.


Add “relaxedUrlToFileSystemMapping” attribute to the web.config httpRuntime.

   1: <system.web>

   2:     ...


   4:   <!-- 10/4/2016 HW: relax the Url to FileSystem Mapping so we can use .  Otherwise, it treats COM1 as the special COM port 1 -->

   5:   <httpRuntime targetFramework="4.5.1" relaxedUrlToFileSystemMapping="true" />

   6: </system.web>



The Ultimate Headline Writing Strategy

1. Oops! [# Topic] Mistakes & Hоw Tо Avoid Them.

Example: Oops! 7 Home Buyer Mistakes & Hоw Tо Avoid Them.

2. [#] оf [People] Reveal Whаt Rеаllу [Does Something]

Example: 11 Top Agents Reveal Whаt Rеаllу Makes Thеir Houses Sell.

3. [#] Tricks tо [Do Something] & [Do Sоmеthing Else] Faster

Example: 9 Tricks To Sell and Close Faster!

4. Hоw Tо [Do Sоmеthing Cool]

Example: Hоw Tо Lock in Your Buyer..

5. Thе Truth Abоut [Something]

Example: Thе Truth Abоut Loyalty of Agents.

6. [#] Bеѕt [Tricks,Techniques,Tips] tо fuel (or boost) уоur [Something]

Example: 8 Bеѕt Tips tо Fuel Yоur House Pipeline.

7. [Do Something] Thiѕ Week [While Dоing Sоmеthing Else]

Example: Gеt Mоrе Houses To Sell While Exercising.

8. Thе Ultimate [Something] Plan (or Guide)

Example: Thе Ultimate Guide For Getting Clicks

9. [#] Reasons Yоur [Something] Iѕ Nоt [Doing Whаt It’s Suppose Tо Do]

Example: 7 Reasons Yоur House Is Not Your Dream House.

10. [Topic] Mistakes Evеn Smart People Make

Example: Home Buying Mistakes Evеn Smart CEO Make

11. [Something Complicated] Made Simple

Example: Financial Independence Made Simple

Kaspersky Blocks Network Printing

When I tried to print to a network printer, the anti-virus firewall software would block it automatically.  The printer queue will shows the document failed to print.

To test, I temporarily disabled Kaspersky and I could print fine.

It turned out the cause had to do with my network being “public network”.  Once I change it to “local network”, then I could print fine even with Kaspersky running.

Entity Framework Code First “Unable to generate an explicit migration because the following explicit migrations are pending”

I ran into this error “Unable to generate an explicit migration because the following explicit migrations are pending”.

Common causes include:

  1. You really have some pending migrations.  You can do “update-database –verbose” to apply the pending migrations.
  2. Your solution have multiple projects (e.g. WebAppProject, DataModelProject) and the wrong project is set as the start up project.  So just go to Visual Studio and select the right project and then set it as a startup project.
  3. You changed the ContextKey value in the Migrations\Configuration.cs.  You can always check the [dbo].[__MigrationHistory] entries to see if the ContextKeys match.  If Configuration.cs does not have a ContextKey, that should be fine.

Taskbar Overlapping Maximized Windows


On my Windows 8.1, the taskbar works normal on the desktop.  However, I have 2 extended desktop on 2 monitors. 


On these extended desktops, any maximized windows would either cover the taskbar or covered by the taskbar. For example, the taskbar covers/overlaps the bottom of my maximized Excel, I cannot click on the bottom worksheet tabs easily.


  1. Right click on the taskbar, select Properties
  2. Check Auto-hide the taskbar.  Click OK.
  3. Move your mouse to the bottom of the screen so it brings up the taskbar.
  4. Right click on the taskbar, select Properties
  5. Clear the checkbox Auto-hide the taskbar.  Click OK.
  6. Any maximized windows and the taskbar should no longer overlap/cover each other.