Windows 10 Virtual Machine Network Issue

A quick note about running Windows 10 Pro 64-bit in VMWare Workstation Player 12:  works well, but there is a networking issue.

Even though the virtual network is up and running – the browser can access the internet – Windows Updates and the Windows Store claim they can’t connect:  “We couldn’t get online to download your updates” and “The server stumbled”.



Switching the virtual NIC from NAT to Bridged gets things working.  My WAG is that there’s a protocol that isn’t being passed through, but that’s just a WAG.


The VM client has the same problem running on an i7 Windows 7 whitebox desktop and an i7 Lenovo T450s Windows 10 laptop.  I don’t really want to run in Bridged mode so it would be nice to figure out the root problem.  Input welcome.

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Retro ThinkPad Follow-up Surveys

David Hill of Lenovo has posted another blog article. He’s asking ThinkPad fans to fill out a survey indicating which features would be most important in the proposed “retro” ThinkPad.  There will be a series of these surveys.

Here’s your chance! Take a minute to speak your mind.

Weigh in on Retro ThinkPad

Retro ThinkPad Survey 2: Displays, Keyboard, and More

Retro ThinkPad Survey 3: What’s Under the Hood?

Retro ThinkPad Survey 4: Miscellaneous

Retro ThinkPad: Time to Think

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ThinkPad Time Machine?


Lenovo is contemplating a “retro” ThinkPad” 😀

…Imagine a blue enter key, 7 row classic keyboard, 16:10 aspect ratio screen, multi-color ThinkPad logo, dedicated volume controls, rubberized paint, exposed screws, lots of status LED’s, and more…

Join the conversation!  Add your support and participate in shaping the specs.  ThinkPad Time Machine?

Title, text, and image shamelessly borrowed from the Lenovo blog article.

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A FOB STORY: some notes on bootable flash drives

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I admit it: I’m a little obsessed with bootable flash drives.  Especially multi-boot flash drives. It’s replaced my obsession with multi-boot PCs.  It’s an interesting challenge, and the end result can be useful.  They’re great for forensics, data recovery and operating system repair, and these days with the shift to ultrabooks and tablets, they may be the only way to install an operating system.

As I mentioned back here Bootable USB Flash Drive Tools there are tools that can help or fully automate making a bootable flash – but I prefer to roll my own.  Please double-check anything I suggest below.  I’ve given it my best shot, but can’t guarantee it’s all correct – or won’t b0rk your computer.

This article discusses hand-made bootable flash drives using grub2 as the bootloader that can be legacy-bootable, UEFI-bootable, multiboot, or all of the above on the same fob.  Some side trips on chain loading and persistence tossed in for good measure.

Legacy bootability testing was done on a Lenovo T400, UEFI testing on a Lenovo Twist.  (The Twist has some issues when booting Ubuntu.  See page “Stuff that doesn’t work…” at the end of this article.)  Flash drive creation, file copying, grub2 installation, etc. on whatever was handy. Ubuntu 14.04.1LTS 64-bit is the live CD ISO used, both in its entirety (as a “vanilla” live CD) and as a source for grub2.  Grub2 documentation can be found here:  GNU GRUB Manual 2.00

There are no doubt several ways to skin this cat, and countless articles – so please forgive one more.  This is a first pass and a little disorganized.  Corrections and additions welcomed.  Let’s go prep the flash drive…

Continue reading

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Polenta With Chicken And Wild Mushrooms


It’s chanterelle mushroom season in the Pacific Northwest.  They grow wild here and are starting to show up in the market.  They’re mild-flavored and I never thought much of them until SWMBO came up with this excellent recipe.  The subtle smoky mushroom flavor goes very well with the polenta and chicken, and the feta adds a nice counterpoint.

Bake approximately one pound of chicken breast (two individual breasts) with a sprinkling of black pepper, oregano, and basil.  Cool and shred.

Chop a small onion and two cloves of garlic.  Saute in olive oil and 1 TBSP of butter until softened.  Cut 5-7 chanterelle mushrooms (more or less, to taste) into chunks and add to the onion and garlic.  Continue to saute until the mushrooms begin to wilt.  Sprinkle with a little cayenne pepper.  Add the shredded chicken.

Bring 3 cups of chicken broth to a low boil.  Add 1 cup of polenta (quick-cooking polenta if you can find it) in a small steady stream.  Cook until thickened.  Stir in 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese when done.

Combine the polenta, chicken mixture, and 1/4 cup of feta cheese.  Mix well and transfer to a casserole dish.  Bake at 350F for 15-20 minutes.

Now all you need is some warm French bread and a glass of good pinot noir.


1 lb chicken breast (more or less)
1 cup polenta (quick-cooking if available)
5-7 chanterelle mushrooms (more or less)
1 small onion
2 cloves garlic
3 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup feta
1 TBSP butter
olive oil as needed
black pepper, oregano, basil, cayenne pepper to taste
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