Windows 7 Update Error 80072EFE

Upon attempting to update a fresh Windows 7 SP1 installation I encountered error 80072EFE:

Windows Update Error 80072EFE

Most information regarding this error code available on the web at present writing indicates some type of connection error. Despite a working connection and ability to browse the web, running the Windows Update Troubleshooter complained that Windows was unable to automatically detect proxy settings for the current network. There being none, and no change in the situation after connecting to a separate network using a different interface, I went looking for updates to the default post-installation set of root certificates and then updates that might enable support, if it was somehow missing from the update service's capabilities, for the new .ms TLD. Stopping the Windows Update Service and deleting its associated cache and temporary files also proved fruitless.

The solution in my case was to manually update the Windows Update Agent per https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/troubleshoot/windows-client/deployment/update-windows-update-agent.

The (current at time of writing) download link for Windows 7 x64 is http://download.windowsupdate.com/windowsupdate/redist/standalone/7.6.7600.320/windowsupdateagent-7.6-x64.exe.

I subsequently added this to my trusty customized Windows 7 installer USB stick in case it is encountered again and not related to the particular platform and initial driver pack I was working with (fingers crossed).

KoalaSafe KS150N Pertinent Links (Prelude)

Recently while thrifting I came across and purchased a KoalaSafe KS150N "Family Friendly Wireless Router with Parental Technology" for approximately CAD$5. I recognized it as a popular type of miniature, USB-powered portable router of which I already have two from other vendors; apparently this was a popular whitelabel type of unit. Given that, I assumed it would probably be easy to install something like OpenWRT if not some other malleable firmware in the same vein. As further research has uncovered OpenWRT actually forms the basis of the firmware the OEM distributes these units with and is therefore also likely the basis of most or all firmwares issued by subsequent resellers. Given its small size and meagre power requirements a use can almost always be found for a router and access point of this sort, despite correspondingly limited and dated capabilities. I plan to return to this topic at length in the future but am extremely taxes for time at the moment so I'm putting a collection of the relevant links I've found here to make it easier to repurpose and write a more complete article about it later on.

Evidently the device was some sort of content filter/parental control that depended on the reseller's (KoalaSafe) cloud infrastructure to function. Interestingly, they chose to push a clean version of OpenWRT as an Over-The-Air Update (OTA) when they went out of business so at least its users would have a usable device instead of just bricking them all - I think that's a move worthy of respect and further investigation/reporting on when I get back to this topic.

Replacement Blades for DeWalt 25mm Tungsten-Carbide Snap-Off Shop/Utility Knife AKA Box Cutter


In the interest of never having to track down the exact replacement blades for my DEWALT 25mm Cartridge Blade Snap off Knife model # DWHT10250 with 25mm laser-deposited tungsten carbide (oOoOoOoh~) edge, please find below links to the 5 (DWHT11925) and 20 (DWHT11925F) packs of replacement 25mm snap-off blades.

Local hero AvE tears down and tears into the gimmicky tungsten-carbide coating which is typically used to make drill bits extra hard but is virtually useless at prolonging the longevity of a rough-and-tumble shop knife like this as its failure tends to stem from chipping of the blade edge which is not improved whatsoever by the additive.

It's not immediately clear how to reload one of these gadgets if you've not had to in years (or just never read the manual, as the case may be. but surely isn't...). These knives have the unique feature of being automatically reloadable; once a blade has been fully spend simply remove it by sliding it all the way off the end then return the slider to the fully retracted position, past the notch in the blades. Sliding forward once more catches the next blade in the cartridge, assuming there is one.

Now that we have our new blades the mission is not to install one that is active and pack a few into an onboard storage slot, as it is with virtually every other knife of this variety. Instead remove the blade cartridge by depressing the black tab and sliding outward from the back of the knife. Insert up to five blades backwards into the cartridge (it will be much easier to insert them as a single package rather than individually) until the latch actuates into their notch. Reinsert the cartridge into the knife housing and use the slider to load the active blade from the top of the stack by fully retracting it then sliding forward.

If you remove the slider you will note that the notch which selects and frees the active blade is an indentation of only a few micrometers - it is critical that when you use this knife you do not rely on the slider to retain the blade's position or you risk sliding the blade back into the cartridge or - much more dangerously - the blade may slide forward out of the housing and could even drop right out. Always make sure you use the locking knob after protruding the length of blade you wish to work with.

Reloading the cartridge is demonstrated in this video:

Things to make with a 3D Printer

A living list of things I intend to (and subsequently have) made with my 3D printer so I can keep track of ideas before they fall out of my ears and bounce away before they can make it to the printer. Or while I wait for a design to become available. Or while I wait for myself to give up waiting for someone else to do it and make one myself...

Before I bought a 3D Printer I promised myself that I would figure out at least one worthwhile, cost-saving or otherwise difficult to obtain item that I could make so I would never have the shame of being That Guy™ who buys a 3D printer and then just leaves it on a shelf. I made the same promise before buying a Raspberry Pi and have since owned four (and counting); perhaps this list will help you figure out something to do with the 3D printer you have in the mail or on your wish list that can help you avoid the shame of being That Guy (or Gal)™ too! :)

  • 18650 shoulder-short prevention cap
  • CR4040 adapter for CR3230 coin cell lithium batteries (for Microsoft wireless 10key)
  • Auto body removal tools (non-scratch spodgers)
  • Battery holders for various formats in varuous sizes
  • Raspberry Pi cases
  • Pwnagotchi cases
  • Bus Pirate cases
  • Project/demo/breakout board cases for the various ones I have in stock
  • Missing battery covers (for keyboards etc)
  • Libby's arcane weird thing: "Lian Li case clips" https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2691439/files Lian Li PC-60FN female clip
  • Battery Organizer