Aleksandar • Vacić

iOS bits and pieces

IE6 + scriptaculous + QuickFind BHO = pure virtual function call error = IE crash

If you are using scripts to do some fancy web-apping, read this post.

I’ve implemented this library of scripts in one CMS app I built. On one hand you have a list of available files and you need to choose some and sort them out into groups. 100% perfect situation for draggable / droppable / sortable combo that scriptaculous implements.

However, at three different computers, IE 6 (XP SP1, fully patched) would crash as soon as the page opening starts. It crashes in iexplore.exe and kernel32.dll, giving away this lovely file as output (small sample given below).

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-16"?>




     BIN_FILE_VERSION="6.0.2800.1106" BIN_PRODUCT_VERSION="6.0.2800.1106"


     FILE_DESCRIPTION="Microsoft HTTP Mail Simple MAPI"


No matter what I tried to find the cause, it would crash. Sometimes it would show the page content, but then crash before finishes loading. Totally confusing, as I could not repeat this on any other computer I tried.

Thus, the last resort. I went to the crime scene last night to try to debug the damn thing. I spent just over 5h trying to figure this out until it ended on the most unexpected culprit of all.

A week in the life of...

Man, this has been a crazy week in the office.

There were three (or was it four?) _go-live_s for different clients, two of them with the parts of the system that directly concerns me (read web site). A series of 8am-20am working days is not something I wish to continue. Especially when it extends to Saturday as well (10am-5pm). Start of the football (US: read soccer) season is the crazy time in bookie business and I can’t wait for things to get back in normal and get quiet a bit.

Kids, get your math in order

One new thing was added this year, to the usual frenzy of new clients and white labeling deals for the old clients. Bookie web sites are often a target of DDoS attacks, with various groups trying to milk some easy money from the bookies. The previous two weeks, we had several testing events of them trying out various ways of overloading the servers and bandwidth.

Blackmailers usually ask 50k/month for “protection” (how cheesy) or they will shutdown the web sites when bookie need them most. Like season start, cup finals, world cups and events like that.

I really can’t believe these people. Do they really think that any bookie would pay them? There are dozens of proven ways to protect yourself from such attacks. Hence most they can do is to disrupt the service for an hour or two at most (that being generous). The potential loss for the bookies at that time could be below or above 50k but in any case that’s a drop in the sea in their entire revenue model. With publicly available reports of bookie revenues going over half a billion per year, no bookie in their right mind would pay such a thing. They would and could always endure the loss on web, as most have telebetting and shops business as well, both having higher profit margin then web.

Lay off kids. All you do is get your self few days of curses from web developers and network admins. But no juice.

How can anyone be angry at Molly?!

I just stumbled at a very interesting post at PPK’s online home. It lead me to Molly’s web site, one quite unusual figure in the whole web standards world. It appears that she took in some of the hatred directed toward Microsoft.

Molly? Molly?!

Molly’s doing an amazing thing. She is doing her best to help all web developers around the world. She spends her own free time to do this. This is not her job- she does it because she wants and she can. Nothing but pure gratitude should be given to her.

I’m even more surprised that included some people from WaSP, although Molly does not name them. WaSP people of all should know that our world would skyrocket forward once IE is better and more standard-compliant. Too many people use it and too many people will use it - it must be changed in order for web dev to progress.

I personally dislike IE as much as possible, but in no way would I ever say that anyone of MS developers is the guilty party for the way IE looks like or works. Let alone anyone from outside of Microsoft.

When you are working in a big company, the decisions are always on the managers. Always. Developers are asked, but in no way they can enforce anything. The fact that we now actually see the glimpse of changes coming in IE7 is a welcome thing. Any improvement is still an improvement.

Go Molly!

Just die already!

I’m spending this afternoon very productively. I wanted to install Service Pack 1 on my Windows Server 2003. Installation went OK, but when it restarted, it came into graphics mode when it should show first dialog window - and the whole computer restarted.

I tried again, same happened.

I tried Safe Mode, same result. It’s broken Safe Mode, the mode that should be working no matter what! Piece of shit simply stops there. Since I can’t get it to start, there is no way to deinstall.

Up until this, I thought that with 2003 Microsoft finally made an OS that works properly. I never had any instability with it. And then I install SP1, something that’s supposed to increase the stability and security and it renders the entire OS useless.

I swear, if it wasn’t for the Total Commander and TopStylePro, I would this instant sell all this junk and buy myself a Mac.

After numerous tries to repair it, I gave up. I used ERD Commander 2005 to uninstall SP1, but it still didn’t do the trick, as ERD only transfers the files back, registry stays screwed. With this, computer started, I was able to login, but that was it. It hangs in there, indefinitelly.

Thus I did the only thing possible - insert installation DVD, repair from setup console. This, to my big surprise, did the entire setup again, but keeping everythiong I had installed in place. I have never seen this - it usually overwrites with new install or just replaces corrupted files, if it detects them as such (which would not help me in this case). Now, that is an improvement.