My tour to Singapore

I arrived at Singapore late last night. I chose to stay at the Furama City Centre Hotel which is close to Chinatown. The first thing I wanted to do was get to chinatown and had a bowl of shrimp noodle. I did not make it as all food stalls had been closed.

Broadband Internet service at the hotel is SGD$25 per day. Actually, there is an Internet Cafe nearby which charges $2 per hour. For convenience sake, I had to buy a 1-day package from the hotel. I really admire the San Francisco Metropolitan WiFi Initiative whereby free or low cost Wifi connections will be offered to all people including visitors.


My last day in Perth

Today is my last day in Perth. During the past two days, I did not find many sight seeing spots or large shopping malls in this city. The Swan River is attractive. Overall, the city is clean and I can smell very fresh air even in urban town. That's something we really never have in Hong Kong.

Should I also mention the weather here ? Oh yeah.. the weather is hot and dry but not humid. Even it is hot, I still feel very comfortable.


Launch of Combat 27

After waiting for 3 weeks, I am happy to know that California Fitness Centre will launch Combat 27 class on 4-5 March. Hmmm... I will attend two launch classes, one is conducted by Jeremy and Martial at Whampoa and the other class is by Yvonne at Wan Chai. Yvonne once mentioned that there will be up to 5 training instructors invited. No doubt Eric and Jeremy will be present. The other, I can only think of Sunny, whoelse will come ???


Telstra Roaming Service

I arrived at Perth at about 8:3o hours this morning. My mobile phone automatically logged to Telstra roaming service. I was just wondering what prefixes I should dial in order to call my home. Before departing, the customer service officer of NWPCS in Hong Kong advised me that I should stick to 00852. Oh shit... this didn't seemt to work at all.

Just when I was frustrated and angry, a SMS message from Telstra came to my mobile phone, advising all visitors to use oo11 followed by country code in dialling overseas calls. This is really a fantastic service to deliver the right information at the right time. Indeed SMS is so powerful that it can tremendoulsy enhance the services of mobile networks.


Checking Assignment of AS Number

Quite honestly, I have played whois for some time and am not aware that this tool can be used to find the registrants of AS Numbers in addition to IP addresses. The command is quite simple, for instance, to find the owner of AS9269, I would do the following :

c:\whois -h whois.apnic.net as9269

Wooo... fantastic and more powerful than web-based whois database search.


DNS query tool

In Linux/Unix distributions, there are 3 DNS query tools provided, namely nslookup, dig and host. Only the nslookup tool is available in Windows XP. I have got the Windows version of dig and host offered by http://pigtail.net/LRP/dig/. Surprise, there is also a copy of whois ported from Linux/Unix. With all these 4 tools, I can use my Windows machine as a Linux box for DNS and whois query tasks.


How to check if an IP address is on Realtime Block List

I have been puzzled for a long time about how to check if an IP address is listed in some famous RBLs. After playing around for several hours, I figured out that RBLs are running on DNS and nslookup or dig should be the interface to perform the query. Thats true. If spamhaus.org blacklists the IP address, it will make "A" record of and upon querying this string, the IP address will be returned. Other DNSRBLs work on similar mechanism. On command level, it is as follows :
# nslookup

Non-authoritative answer: canonical name = blocklist.address.is.wrong.spamhaus.org.
Name: blocklist.address.is.wrong.spamhaus.org

I found that dig is more useful in DNSBL query. Using dig, I would type :
[root@i3way mail]# dig +short A
and the response is


IP address for broadband TV set-top box

For PCCW’s 6M network service, the ADSL modem has four RJ-45 ports. If a NOW set-top box is connected to one of the ports, the IP address obtained is internal IP address 192.168.X.Y. Only this IP address range is able to access the multicast network for viewing NOW broadband TV.

However, for desktop or notebook PC connected to the ADSL modem port, the IP address obtained is a routable public unicast IP address. How come the set-top box get a private IP address and PC gets a public IP address. The answers are simple. The MAC address of the set-top box is known so a special IP address range can be assigned upon the DHCP connection. If PCCW assigns public IP addresses to both PC and set-top box, it will have to double the IP address resource. So long as private IP address can serve the IPTV delivery, there is no reason to deploy another IP address.


Combat 26

Bodycombat track series 已經在去年12月初出至第26版,加洲健身中心 (California Fitness Centre) 亦有舉辦為期兩星期的 combat 26 練習。其實 combat 26 tracks 包括了多首強勁節奏的歌典,最特別應該是 bagpipes,蘇格蘭風笛的一段非常動聽,很難想像配合的動作竟是 jump kick,真佩服 trainers 的想像力及音樂感。其它值得介紹的歌曲有 guitar damage, fighter, night life I’m so excited.


shame on NWPCS

NWPCS increases the service charge of Inter-network SMS by 50 % from 40 cents each to 60 cents. This is not necessary as the infrastructure has already been built there and there is enough capacity for higher growth. I guess the reason is that as CSL charges 60 cents per message, after CSL has acquired NWPCS, CSL sure will not allow a large difference in the SMS service charge of the two networks belonging to the same company and will align the service charge of NWPCS to a higher level. This is a bad side of merger and aquisition.


Smoke on the water

How many rock bands have played Deep Purple's super rock song "Smoke on the Water" ? Oh yeah, numerous. At least I know Iron Maiden, Led Zepplin, Rainbow, AC DC, and Black Sabbath and Queeen. The lyric tells a true story. In December 1971, a fire burnt down the Montreux Casino near Lake Geneva. The band members would never forget what they had seen and experienced so came up with this great song in the history of hard rock music.

We all came out to Montreux
On the lake geneva shoreline
To make records with a mobile
We didn’t have much time
Frank Zappa and the mothers
Were at the best place around
But some stupid with a flare gun
Burned the place to the ground
Smoke on the water, fire in the sky

They burned down the gambling house
It died with an awful sound
Funky claude was running in and out
Pulling kids out the ground
When it all was over
We had to find another place
But swiss time was running out
It seemed that we would lose the race
Smoke on the water, fire in the sky

We ended up at the grand hotel
It was empty cold and bare
But with the rolling truck stones thing just outside
Making our music there
With a few red lights and a few old beds
We make a place to sweat
No matter what we get out of this
I know we’ll never forget
Smoke on the water, fire in the sky


Switching on the backlight of ipod

Sometimes I need to turn on th backlight of my ipod Mini for a few seconds. I did not know how this could be done until today. If I press the menu button for a few seconds, the the backlight will be turned on. Pressing the menu button will toggle from on to off. This is convenient especially if I want to see the name of songs or to view playlist.

If I remember correctly, this feature is not stated in the user manual.


captcha images

These days, we see a lot of captcha images when registering new accounts on web sites, writing blogs or even sending out messages from webmail. We are required to retype the characters printed in the images.

A captcha (an acronym for "completely automated public Turing test to tell computers and humans apart") is a type of challenge-response test used in computing to determine whether or not the user is human. A common type of captcha requires that the user type the letters of a distorted and/or obscured sequence of letters or digits that appears on the screen. Only human can read the image and therefore it successfully prevents bots or machines to perform automated registration.

Some people are not happy that captcha wastes their time. Please be considerate. If we want to reduce the amount of spam on the Internet, we have to live up with captcha.


Private Multi-cast IP Addresses

It is well-known that in the IP address range,, and are assigned as private IP addresses not routable to the Internet. The allocations of these IP addresses have somehow extended the life span of IPv4 address space.

Are there any private IP addresses in the Class D multicast range ? Yes, the range - are available for each organization to freely use. Right now, NOW TV and SUPERSUN are riding on this IP range to deliver their IPTV service. NOW and SUPERSUN could each have up to 65536 TV channels for their services. The limitation is that IPTV services delivered in such a way could not be routed to other networks.

Some broadband TV service providers are now using the GLOP address range 233.x.y.z. The value of x and y will be derived from their AS numbers. They will have the last octet freely available for them to use. In such a case, they will have 256 TV channels that could be delivered across the Internet.


PSP Video

I got a PSP and wanted to transfer some music video files onto it. Damn it ! Nothing has been mentioned in the user manual where video files are to be stored. The only thing mentioned is that the video files must be in MP4 format.

After searching the Internet for several hours, I figured out that the folder to be created is PSP/MP_ROOT/100MNV01/. Thumbnail files associated with the video must also be created accordingly. Fortunately, I have PSP video 9 which helps me to handle these stuff easily. This is a freeware.

For photos and music, the folders to be created are clearly stated in the user manual. It is disappointing that Sony purposely does not properly publish the information on storing video.


Cousin domain names of paypal.com

I received another phishing email and upon clicking the embedded URL, it redirected me to a site called r-paypal.com. This is a common technique of cousin domain name which is to make people believe that r-paypal.com is a sub-domain of paypal.com. On further querying DNS name records, the cousin domain names a-paypal.com, b-paypal.com up to z-paypal.com have been registered. This group of people spend about US260 to register the cousin domain names for 1-year use and then they can send out phishing email.

I think domain name registration bodies should pay attention to the registration of cousin domain names and notify the name owners of paypal.com to investigate if these cousin domain names will disrupt the businesses of paypal.com.


Yet another phishing fraud

Yet there is another phishing email to fool visa card holders:
Good afternoon, unfortunately some processings have been cracked by hackers, so a new secure code to protect your data has been introduced by visa.

You should check your card balance and in case of suspicious transactions immediately contact your card issuing bank.

If all transactions are alright, it doesn't mean the card is not lost and cannot be used. Probably, your card issuers have not updated information yet. That is why we strongly recommend you to visit our web-site and update your profile, otherwise we cannot guarantee stolen money repayment.

Thank you for your attention.

Click here and update your profile.

The email header indicated that the mail was from, reverse lookup give the host name as "kpobr.moao.ameritech.net". It has nothing to do with visa corporation.

Hey..... silly tricks come over and over again!!!