2009-01-12

Installing Google Chrome Behind a SOCKS Proxy

Google Updater is using the Windows Update Agent (WUA) service for installation/update purposes. It is obious that you are using Google Updater if you have installed Google Pack. But the Chrome installer depends on it, too. The problem is that even the newest version of WUA (7.2.6001.784) can use only HTTP proxy, and no SOCKS proxy. There are many possibilities but here is how I managed to install Chrome with the help of Sun Java System Web Proxy Server. I have chosen Sun's solution because
  • mod_proxy in Apache HTTP Server dosn't support SOCKS,
  • Squid proxy has a compile-time option to turn SOCKS support on - but the win32 binary distribution lacks this feature,
  • I have never used the Sun Proxy Server (previously known as iPlanet and Netscape Proxy Server) before, but heck, it's free and it has even a win32 platform installer, so why not give it a try?
So here is the cookbook.
  1. Download the Proxy Server.
  2. Install the software, but use the bundled Java version. Proxy Server 4.0.9 and JRE 1.6.0_11 results in an admin server that is not working (at least for me).
  3. Start the admin server from the start menu and visit the admin page with your browser (this is not Chrome yet, I think).
  4. Select the server instance the installer created for you (or create one if you don't have one), and under Caching in Set Cache Specifics, disable the cache, you won't need it.
  5. In Routing under Set Routing Preferences specify Route Through Socks Server and fill in localhost:1080. This is where the Proxy Server's SOCKS server will run. Of course you can choose any other port, if you wish.
  6. Under the SOCKS tab choose Set SOCKS v5 Routing and add a new Proxy Routing entry. Leave the destination host and port blank to specify any destination, then fill in your SOCKS proxy's details in Destination Proxy Address and Port.
  7. Now start the SOCKS proxy under Start / Stop SOCKS Server, and in Preferences start the Proxy under Start / Stop Server.
  8. In a command prompt run "proxycfg -p localhost:8080" - assuming you are using the default configuration and the Proxy Server is listening on port 8080.
Basically you are done. Just run the Chrome installer. You may want to set automatic startup for the Web Proxy Server and Socks Server in your host services manager.

2009-01-02

Color Profiles versus Firefox

It was Firefox 3.1 beta in which I've noticed that some photos on the web seem quite warm and a bit too dark. More apparently if the photo had a small preview, that and the original one looked really different. Obviously something broken with color profiles. I've learned that Firefox has support for color profiles since 3.0 but 3.1 will have this enabled by default. I've also found that when I've installed my TFT display, I got a new color profile for it. I could "repair" the colors in two ways:
  1. installing "sRGB Color Space Profile.icm" (shipped with Windows) as the default profile, and
  2. setting gfx.color_management.display_profile in Firefox to the path of the above file.
I'm still wondering what is the correct way.

I've also tried to figure out that what are the color settings of the monitor (Samsun 223 BW) which the shipped profile was made for. On my display there are MagicColor (on/off) and four Color Tone settings (Cool/Normal/Warm/Custom) not to mention Brightness/Contrast. No clue, either.