Executable Extension

Want to run a script in the command console that is not of type EXE, COM, BAT by just typing in the name of the script? Have a script in Perl or Python that you have that you want to run without typing the name of the interpreter with switches? It's pretty easy to do in Windows.

  1. Open up System Properties and click on Environment Variables:

  2. Select the PATHEXT System variable and click on the Edit button.

  3. Add the extension you want. In this case, let's add the extension for .PL so we can run Perl scripts without typing in the name of the Perl interpreter:

  4. Hit OK on the Windows.

  5. In an Explorer Window, Go to Tools -> Folders

  6. In the Folder Options Window, click on the File Types tab, and then click New:

  7. Type .PL for the File Extension

  8. Click OK then Click on the Advanced button to open up the Edit File Type and click on New...

  9. Enter the name of the interpreter:

  10. Hit OK for all Windows.

  11. You're set and good to go.

Now let's test it. Make a .pl file under c:\ called "add.pl". Make add.pl be:

$sum = $ARGV[0] + $ARGV[1];
print "\nSum of the numbers is: $sum\n\n";


Now let’s call it via the console by typing:

add 5 5


Running a 32bit or 64bit CPU?

Sometimes Windows alone might not be able to tell you what your machine has. To be absolutely sure, if you at least know you have an Intel CPU, try their Processor Identification Utility.


You can also save a text file report summary of your machine. Here’s my machine at work:

Intel(R) Processor Identification Utility
Version: 4.21.20091215
Time Stamp: 2010/01/27 19:53:40
Operating System: 6.1-7600-
Number of processors in system: 1
Current processor: #1
Active cores per processor: 2
Disabled cores per processor: 0
Processor Name: Intel(R) Pentium(R) D CPU 830   3.00GHz
Type: 0
Family: F
Model: 4
Stepping: 4
Revision: 6
Maximum CPUID Level: 5
L1 Instruction Cache: 2 x 12 Kµops
L1 Data Cache: 2 x 16 KB
L2 Cache: 2 x 1 MB
Packaging: LGA775
Platform Compatibility Guide: 05B
Enhanced Intel SpeedStep(R) Technology: Yes
MMX(TM): Yes
Intel(R) SSE: Yes
Intel(R) SSE2: Yes
Intel(R) SSE3: Yes
Intel(R) SSE4: No
Enhanced Halt State: Yes
Execute Disable Bit: Yes
Intel(R) Hyper-Threading Technology: No
Intel(R) 64 Architecture: Yes
Intel(R) Virtualization Technology: No
Expected Processor Frequency: 3.0 GHz
Reported Processor Frequency: 3.0 GHz
Expected System Bus Frequency: 800 MHz
Reported System Bus Frequency: 800 MHz

FYI, this is from Intel:

Certain advanced Intel(R) processor technologies require system support features be present to be fully enabled. Please see the notifications below for system features required to enable the listed technologies.

Intel(R) Hyper-Threading Technology
Intel(R) Hyper-Threading Technology requires a computer system with a processor supporting Intel(R) HT Technology and an Intel(R) HT Technology-enabled chipset, BIOS and operating system. Performance will vary depending on the specific hardware and software you use. For more information including details on which processors support Intel(R) HT Technology, see http://www.intel.com/info/hyperthreading

To verify your system for Intel(R) Hyper-Threading Technology, download the Intel(R) Hyper-Threading Technology Test Utility from http://downloadfinder.intel.com/scripts-df/Product_Filter.asp?ProductID=1687

Intel(R) 64 Architecture
64-bit computing on Intel architecture requires a computer system with a processor, chipset, BIOS, operating system, device drivers and applications enabled for Intel(R) 64 architecture. Performance will vary depending on your hardware and software configurations. Consult with your system vendor for more information.

Intel(R) Virtualization Technology
Intel(R) Virtualization Technology requires a computer system with a processor, chipset, BIOS, enabling software and/or operating system, device drivers and applications designed for this feature. Performance will vary depending on your configuration. Contact your vendor for more information.

Intel, Intel Atom, Intel Core, Pentium, Xeon, Celeron, OverDrive, SpeedStep and MMX are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the United States and other countries. Copyright(C) 2010, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved.

Log Parser Lizard

Log Parser Lizard is a great free tool if you use Log Parser to parse IIS logs using SQL. It’s a visual tool to query the logs. It also comes with pre-made queries. Let’s take a look at one, “Requests and Full Status by Number of Hits” in IIS logs:

-- Let's query the IIS W3SVC80086301 Log file c:\temp\logs\ex080918.log
SELECT 	STRCAT(	cs-uri-stem, 
		REPLACE_IF_NOT_NULL(cs-uri-query, STRCAT('?',cs-uri-query))
		) AS Request, 
	STRCAT(	TO_STRING(sc-status), 		
		STRCAT(	'.',
			COALESCE(TO_STRING(sc-substatus), '?' )
		) AS Status, 
	COUNT(*) AS Total 
FROM c:\temp\logs\ex080918.log 
WHERE (sc-status >= 400) 
GROUP BY Request, Status 

Which gives you the following result (depending, of course, what’s in your logs):


Also, I could’ve queried all the log files put together, such as:

select * from c:\temp\logs\*log

Also, you can create global variables and use them in your queries so that you don’t always have to put the full path to a file. For example:


I’m setting the variable IISW3C equal to c:\temp\logs\ex*.log . The queries that come with this tool use these variables (keys) as a shortcut. For your IIS logs dir, you may want to set it up to point to C:\WINDOWS\system32\LogFiles\W3SVC80086301 . Once you’ve done this, you can do (HIT F5 to run query):

-- Get the top 10 from all IIS logs
select top 10 * from #IISW3C#

You can also view LogParser graphs from this tool. Let’s try the query to show all extension with total hits:

	COUNT(*) AS [Total Hits]
GROUP BY Extension 
-- Ignore .CFM extension
ORDER BY [Total Hits] DESC


Computer Tools for the Power User

Here’s a list several tools I use both at home and work. I usually carry these on my USB keychain for easy access. They’re mostly lightweight, fast, and some don’t even require a installation. These are free and NOT Shareware! They are for Windows/Windows XP.


Used for file comparisons. You can compare text files and see, line by line where these files are different.

Great editor for HTML. This integrates nicely into Internet Explorer to “view source.” It can collapse HTML tags.

Microsoft Notepad on steroids. It uses color coding for files of various extensions. Uses transparency so that you can see through the editor window what’s behind it.

Agent Ransack
Search for text in files. The results show you the file and what line your keyword search is in.

Password Manager
It saves your passwords. You can create categories for what kind of passwords they are. Once you save it, you hit CTRL+U to save the user name, and CTRL+C to save the password to the clipboard. It uses a secure 448 bit Blowfish algorithm to ensure the data are not crackable. The password used for securing access to stored data is not saved anywhere.

JR Screen Ruler
A visual ruler you can use to measure pixels on the screen.

Record whatever you do at your Windows Desktop, and can replay them exactly. This is great to record tasks and save them for later.

Get a checksum for a file using hashes: crc16, crc32, xsum, md5.

Telnet/SSH Client

Process Explorer
See information about processes: what files or directories they have open. Kill processes, etc.

Know exactly what’s running when you start windows and turn those annoying programs off.

Simple File Schredder
Simple File Shredder is a utility that securely deletes your files so they can’t be restored.

Restore Deleted Files
This restores files that have been deleted. Use this as a last line of defense. The great thing about this program is that it does not require to install – unlike other applications, where you need to install first.

Angry IP Scanner
Angry IP scanner is a very fast IP scanner and port scanner. It can scan IP addresses in any range as well as any their ports. Its binary file size is very small compared to other IP or port scanners.

Change the date stamp for any file you want.

Great popup blocker.

Good firewall software.

System Spec
System Information Utility. Get a report for practically everything you wanted to know about your computer.

Synchronize files from different folders. I use this to synchronize files from my computer and USB keychain and USB drive. Lots of features.

Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP
PowerToys add fun and functionality to the Windows experience. What are they? PowerToys are additional programs that developers work on after a product has been released. These tools include: Synchronize file tool, Image resizer to resize a batch of files, power calculator, multiple desktops, tweak UI settings, and more productivity tools.

Windows Internet Browser Plugins

Web Developer Plugin for Firefox
Provides a variety of tools for quickly creating, understanding, and troubleshooting Web pages. This feature is added to the menu when you right click on a page.

Internet Explorer Developer Toolbar
Provides a variety of tools for quickly creating, understanding, and troubleshooting Web pages. This feature is added to the menu when you right click on a page.

IE Context Menu Toolset
This is a set of tools which extend the right-click context menu of Internet Explorer. By simply installing these tools, your browser will have added functionality which can greatly help in debugging pages, designing sites, diagnosing form problems, tweaking design, etc.

Fiddler is a HTTP Debugging Proxy which logs all HTTP traffic between your computer and the Internet. Fiddler allows you to inspect all HTTP Traffic, set breakpoints, and “fiddle” with incoming or outgoing data. Fiddler is designed to be much simpler than using NetMon or Achilles, and includes a simple but powerful JScript.NET event-based scripting subsystem.

Command Console Tools

Like the dir command but displays files/directories with color and in columns.
Way much better! The drawback is if your OS is not using FAT12 or FAT16 type disks, the Bytes Consumed will be wrong.

Great Hexeditor. The only Hexeditor I use.

Get md5 hashes of files or text you type in. Useful if you need to find the md5 hash of a word.

Other Great Sites for Small Tools

These two sites have great little apps for networks, programming, graphics, etc. These are also free.

Systinternals Freeware

Reprogram Your Keyboard Keys

I recently got a new Microsoft keyboard without the Right-Windows-Key. I use this all the time ’cause I’m a shortcut fanatic, and I couldn’t get used to using the one on the left. Not only that, but I use a CTRL/SHIFT + INSERT a lot to copy/paste and the keys were way different from my past keyboard…

along comes AutoHotKey….

This program rocks. With it, you can create a script that runs and stays in memory. Remap keys and buttons on your keyboard, joystick, and mouse. In any case, with this tool, I was able to remap the menu key (the one usually between the Right-Windows-Key and CTRL key) that I never use to a windows key. That was close enough to me. Once installed, I was able to create a script with this command:


And that’s it! That mapped the menu key to the windows key! I’ll be experimenting with this program a little more and trying to get more shortcuts. You can also compile your scripts into a program that runs without an installation – in case you want your shortcuts / remapping run on a different machine.

The URL is: http://www.autohotkey.com/

Windows PowerShell

PowerShell just came out. Being a DOS zealot back in the day, this looks interesting. It’s suppose to be as robust as Bash + you have access .NET’s CLR with the scripting language. I gotta make time for this.

Read more at: msdn
Read more at: microsoft
Read more at: wikipedia