What I Learned Today About VirtualBox and Windows XP

Today I learned a few things and I wanted to record them here for future reference and in case they might prove useful to some of you.

The first thing I learned is that virtualBox, when installed from the ubuntu software centre gets installed in a different mode than when it is installed from a download from virtual box’s website. When installed via ubuntu centre it you get the OSE version. OSE stands for Open Source Edition. The problem with this version is that it does not have access to the USB port on the host machine. If you need access to the USB ports on the host machine you need to install the regular version of virtual Box. You can read more about this here:

http://askubuntu.com/questions/19286/how-to-access-usb-in-virtualbox-running-windows-xp-as-guest-os#19288

Another thing I learned about computers today is related to windows XP. I am not a windows user, so what I’m about to say might sound as obvious to some of you. I learned that you can run your windows system on a workgroup or a domain. Running on a workgroup is what most people are used to. Surprisingly, running on a Domain changes a lot of things, for example how to create new users.

I also learned that windows sometimes has troubles when the Event log gets full. If the event log is full, you will have to log as an administrator to solve the problem.

You can read more about this here:

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows/fixing-the-event-log-is-full-error-on-windows-xp/

You can also read some useful information on domains here:

http://www.askdavetaylor.com/resetting_domain_on_windows_xp.html

Unfortunately I was unable to find an article that prove to be very useful long time ago when a friend in Mexico asked me to clean up her computer. She had 2 accounts, one was hers and the other belonged to her sister. Her account was pretty much clean, but her sister had a load of cr*p in her account, which was password protected. Back then I read an article on how to gain access as an Administrator which involved typing some commands on the command line.

The process involved registering a job to be executed in a certain time (a few seconds) and then launching the Explorer with super user privileges. That was my first time I ever used the super user account in windows.

Nowadays I know of a few other ways to gain access to a windows computer, but that article was very interesting in that it involved doing it yourself from the command prompt, which is always something cool to do.

I have bit better understanding of windows systems. As always, I think their security is very poor, but then again, you can trick a mac computer into thinking it has never been used, and it will ask you to set up a new user. It will even show you a welcome screen, the one you see when you first install you OSX. Once you create this file, you can access the files of other users really easily.

Another thing I learned today is that you can deactivate the Welcome screen in a windows xp computer. By doing this you add a bit of security to it since an intruder not only has to guess your password, but your username too. Of course this is only useful as long as the user has no means of changing the registry.

I hope you find any of the information in the articles I mentioned useful.