Monday, June 23, 2008

My favorite firefox Addons

My favorite firefox plugins

Download Them All

Users of DAP (Download Accelerator Plus) will find this quite useful. It helps download huge files in upto 10 chunks maximizing your available bandwidth usage.


Ever thought that you had the ability to just store a block of paragraph from a webpage. Well, here is the addon that lets you to copy scraps out of webpage and lets you organize them in a hierarchical structure.

Ad Block Plus

Want to get rid of the annoying ads filling up the web page.


An integrated FTP solution. It becomes slower if there are thousands of files in the directory that you are trying to traverse.

Fox Clocks

Working in an office spread over several timezones. This tool can help you track times in all part of the world in the status bar of your browser.

Tab Splitter (Experimental)

Amazon Price Drop tracker (Experimental)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Oracle Transparent Gateway SQL Server Encoding issues resolution

This article for all those who are involved in migration of data from Oracle to SQL server or vice versa.
It highlights a number of encoding issues that you might be facing.

You cannot represent the left and right quotation marks in Latin 8859-1.
They are represented as ‘(â\200\230) and ’ (\200\231).
Only when you set the format to UTF-8 (Unicode Transport Format), you can see them as ( ‘ ) and ( ’ ). These symbols are not found on the Windows keyboards but they are generated by tools like Microsoft Word.

When inserted inside the database, they may get messed up.

There is another problem while inserting these characters in SQL Server database using TG:
SS uses Collation Latin1_General_CI_AS by default. And UCS-2 is the UTF8 equivalent of Oracle in SS. But by no means, they are compatible.

So, a character needs to be converted to ANSI before moving over to SS.

Another problem with UTF8 is with the German characters involving Umlauts. If that is the last character in an insert statement, then 'ORA-01756: quoted string not properly terminated' is encountered.
eg: insert into tmp_enc@dblinkToSS values ('Umlauts ä ö ü ß Ä Ö Ü ');
would result in an error.

Adding a space before the terminating quote character will result in Success.
insert into tmp_enc@dblinkToSS values ('Umlauts ä ö ü ß Ä Ö Ü ');

This is being discussed at the following thread too:

SQL Server create table as Syntax Oracle

SQL server syntax for creating a table from a query

select * into new_table from
(select col1, col2 from old_tab1,old_tab2 where 1=1) a

Keep in mind that the alias needs to be specified. SQL Server is not that forgiving.

I find the Oracle syntax much intuitive:
create table new_table
select * from ....

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Make the maximum from a Skype IN account

Using Skype IN -

The Skype In number alone costs $60 per annum.
If you buy it as part of a package with Skype Pro, you will pay $36 for skype Pro + $24 for Skype In number.

Now, how to get it even cheaper.

A little planning is needed to get the maximum worth of your money with skype.

Buy a Skype Pro account for $36 for one year.
Now you are given a credit of $12 as talk time. They also call it Skype credit. This credit can be used as cash to purchase most services on skype.
Ask a friend to use his her skype account to send you paypal money of $12.

Pay him/her back by any means that you like or even using the same paypal service available with skype.

Now you have 12+12 dollars in your account. And you can buy a Skype In number with these $24.

So, one year of unlimited calling + Skype In number + more services cost you just $36 + $12 = $48.