Archive for November, 2009

Using MS Money with Nationwide Online Banking after sync service stopped

November 28, 2009 1 comment

It took me a month to get around to checking why my MS Money 2005 was no longer directly syncing with Nationwide – and so I found, like many others, that Nationwide have discontinued the service after Microsoft terminated support.

Since the only other option for electronic format that Nationwide offer is a plain CSV of the transactions on the screen in  web-banking, some workarounds are needed. Fortunately, quite a few people have been looking at this, and there’s a tool (MT2OFX) to convert the CSV to OFX (which MSMoney supports), combined with some scripts specific to Nationwide accounts. A recent discussion in MoneySavingExpert covers how to set it all up. Note there are updated scripts for both Nationwide and CC here.

Since this method does not have unique IDs for the transactions, it will overlap/duplicate any that were brought in via the direct sync. However, you can delete those, and from then on, it’ll work fine. Thanks to specifying your own dates on Nationwide (except Credit Cards, which export in monthly statements), you can set the precise date of your last sync, and limit it to a handful of duplicates.

From what I can see, the main detail is there, and Money continues to auto-classify as before. It’s a pain – I have 5 accounts, and you have to select dates and export each in turn – but it’ll do until I move to another bank.

Categories: Uncategorized

Altec Lansing 903 Headphones – Lost a Ear Gel

November 17, 2009 4 comments

So, this is the part they don’t tell you….

I lost an ear gel the other day. They’re cheap pieces of rubber that pop off, and one of them had popped off – never to be found again. Not a problem, I thought – it should be quite cheap to buy spares.


It might be cheap – if you could actually buy them! But ebay don’t do them, Altec Lansing and Plantronics don’t do then… No-one does them.

I’ve emailed Altec Lansing support, and they *did* say “No problem, we’ll post you some replacements”. It was a US support tech, however, so I’m waiting to hear his response when he sees my UK postal address.

Reply from Gigabyte Technical Support on the problems installing Windows 7 64-bit

November 2, 2009 Leave a comment

Although the problem is now fixed, I have had this reply from Gigabyte (which took around a week):


Are you upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 7?

Do you have alternate HDD or Windows 7 copy to test?

Please try to reset the CMOS –
1) Disconnect the power cord from the power supply. Remove the CMOS battery (the flat silver disk) from the motherboard using a srew drive or similar implement. Leave it out for a minute or two, then replace it and power on the system. The BIOS settings should have been reset, allowing the computer to boot.
2) Go into the BIOS – “Load optimized default”
3) Save settings and exit.
4) If this doesn’t work then try “Load Failsafe default”


So.. judging from the generic approach, I would say it’s not a well known problem, by them at least. But it’s another option to try out – resetting the CMOS. I have read this on a forum elsewhere as well, although I’m not sure if this means it’s a trusted method, or whether they just had the same generic reply from Gigabyte Tech Support!


Categories: Uncategorized

Got there! Gigabyte GA-G33M-S2H now running Windows 7 64-bit

November 1, 2009 Leave a comment

Perhaps the last 3-4 posts I’ve made have reflected the countless hours I’ve spent trying to get 64-bit Windows 7 installed on my Gigabyte motherboard. Now, finally, I’ve managed it.


In the end, I cheated. What I did was simply:

  • Install an old 64-bit Windows to a new partition (I chose Windows Server 2003 R2 64-bit)
  • Run that 64-bit Windows, and then run the Windows 7 64-bit installer from within Windows  – and install to another partition

The reason for this alternate route, was because my Gigabyte board repeatedly refused to boot from the 64-bit installer media directly. My best guess for the reason, from a lot of experimentation, is that the board disagrees with the bootloader on the newer operating systems (Vista, Windows 7, even Ubuntu), but would still work with the older bootloaders.

Along the way, I found:

  • You can run the installer from within an older version of Windows (mine being XP), but you can only go from 32-bit to 32-bit, or 64 to 64. Since I currently run 32-bit, and wanted 64, this wasn’t a quick option.
  • You CAN boot from USB Flash Drives on Gigabyte motherboards like mine, but you have to plug it in, go to the BIOS, and treat it like an internal HDD – moving it ahead of the others in the HDD Boot Order in Advanced Settings. Selecting USB-HDD, for example, seems ineffective. However, once I got this working, Win7 started to boot, but still failed before it got anywhere useful.*
  • Unplugging and disabling every single peripheral, including AHCI, Virtualisation, Serial/Parallel, USB devices, TV card, PCI cards, RAM, Optical Drive, even all the HDDs!, had no effect on the boot failure
  • You can’t try to run the setup in VMWare instead to do an install to physical disc, since VMWare Server 1.x doesn’t support Windows 7, and 2.x doesn’t support writing to physical discs.**

So, now this is working, I’ll immediately take a clean image using BootIt NG, and then start the long process of building up all my apps to get the same operability as I had in XP.

* – Although my initial install from within Server2003 also  failed from the USB stick – and then succeeded from ISO image – so maybe the files did actually corrupt that time round. So this approach might still work…
** – There is a hack to write to Raw disc in Linux. But whether you have the patience to find a Linux distro that will install, then install VMware inside that, then create a VM, and try to install Win7 in it… and then hope it’ll boot successfully direct from that installation despite all the different devices…… is another question.