Thursday, July 9, 2020

Renewed Malaysia passport in 11 minutes during RMCO period

My passport was about to expire in less than 6 months time. I planned to renew it online, but the system said due to their internal problem, I was not able to proceed with the online passport renewal and need to do it by going to an immigration office.

You can click here to try your luck to renew your Malaysia passport online. Before you proceed with the online passport renewal, you need to take your passport photograph at a professional photo shop to be uploaded to the system. After you've completed the online passport renewal process and made the payment online, you will still need to go to the immigration office with relevant documents, including a printed copy of the payment receipt, in order to collect your new passport.

If you plan to do your passport renewal at the immigration office, it is not necessary to take passport photograph, as your passport photograph will be taken at the immigration office, free of charge. Even though you have brought your own photo, the officer will still insist you to take a new photo at their photo booth.

Since I was not able to renew my passport online, I made an appointment to visit the UTC Shah Alam Immigration Office located at Level 2 of Kompleks UTC Selangor (Anggerik Mall). During current recovery movement control order (RMCO) period, it is a must to make prior appointment before going to the immigration office.

You can click here to make online appointment with immigration office.

Note that you need to make separate appointment for each person going to the immigration office. For my case, I brought my kid together to renew his passport as well. Therefore, I made 2 appointments, one for myself and one for my kid, both at the same timeslot.

Kompleks UTC Selangor (Anggerik Mall) is quite easy to reach with the aid of Google Maps. You can easily identify the building with its big UTC Selangor signage as shown in the photo below. It was quite easy to get a parking bay there. The parking is not free, but its hourly rate is pretty reasonable.

The immigration office is located at Level 2 in the building. We need to fill in a form for each person and submit all the required documents to the reception counter there, before we can get a queue number chit to be served.

Required documents for an adult to renew passport:
  • Existing passport (original)
  • MYKAD (original)
  • Printed copy of the appointment email received after the online appointment was made

Required documents for kids below 18 years old to renew passport:
  • Existing passport (original)
  • MYKID/MYKAD (both original and photocopy)
  • Birth certificate (both original and photocopy)
  • MYKAD of the parent who brings the kid to the immigration office (both original and photocopy)
  • Printed copy of the appointment email received after the online appointment was made

If you forgot to bring any of the required original documents, then that's too bad, you need to make another visit again with the complete set of required documents.

If you forgot to photocopy any of the required photocopies, no worry, expensive photocopy service is available at the shop just next door.

If you forgot to print out your appointment email, also no worry, expensive email printing service is available at the same shop next door, provided that you can access to that email with your handphone.

One more thing! If you forgot to bring the person (such as your kid) along, the passport also cannot be issued to the person, as thumbprints verification is an imperative process. The passport holder needs to be present at the immigration office.

Quite surprisingly, there were very few people coming for immigration office service today, probably because now is still RMCO period. We managed to complete the whole process, from getting the queue number chits for 2 persons, then attended by an immigration officer, had our left and right thumbprints verified, took our photo, made the payments at payment counter, put the payment receipts into a basket at Counter 8, wait for a while and collect our new passport, all completed in just 11 minutes.

Anyhow, the immigration office in UTC Selangor has made a KPI that all passports shall be ready for collection within 1 hour after payment made.

Note that payment can only be made either using credit card or debit card. Cash payment is not available.

Passport cover can be purchased at the passport collection counter. The price is RM5 each. There are 2 types of passport cover, the old type in darker red colour has a more solid feel, and the new type in lighter red colour is a piece of soft plastic. This passport cover is optional.

Friday, July 3, 2020

Choosing the correct cable to connect DVB-T2 television to aerial wall socket

Since August 2019, Malaysia free over-the-air television broadcasting has been switched from analogue to digital.

The good news is, nowadays most newer model of television has built-in DVB-T2 decoder to receive digital over-the-air TV channels.

If your house/condominium/apartment has an aerial wall socket that connects to the external aerial antenna of the building that looks like the one below, you can use a TV cable with male-to-female connectors to connect your TV with DVB-T2 decoder to the TV wall socket and receive the broadcasted digital TV channels.

If your TV is facing problem of missing channels, pixelated screen, snowy screen due to weak signal strength and/or weak signal quality, it can probably be caused by the type of cable used.

Referring to the table below, if you are staying in a highrise building, the cable buried inside the call connecting the wall socket to the external antenna should be coaxial cable of type RG11/U.

If you are staying in landed property which the distance between the external antenna and the wall socket is below 225 meters, then maybe RG6/U cable still be used without much problem.

For the portion of cable connecting your TV to the wall socket, RG6/U cable is recommended. Using RG11/U cable is even better, but its cost will be higher too.

If you are using RG59/U cable but don't face any problem with your TV, then you can continue using it, otherwise, consider upgrade the cable to RG6/U.

In the photo below, the black cable is type RG59/U and the white cable is type RG6/U. You can easily notice that the RG6/U has a much thicker diameter than RG59/U.

If your TV problem persists despite using RG6/U cable, you might probably need to resort to other solution, such as adding a signal booster, using digital TV decoder box, or receiving the TV signal using an internal antenna.

Monday, June 29, 2020

Generating PHP codes for mobile-friendly web database applications with AppGini rapid development tool

AppGini by Bigprof Software is a rapid web application development tool for the PHP and MySQL web service stack.

It is very easy to use, and very handy to generate up-and-running mobile-friendly web database applications instantly at one mouse click, without the need of writing any programming code.

With AppGini, it is possible for you to save hundreds of man-hours spent in prototyping, programming, design and testing your web application.

AppGini is a Windows application. As such, it is best suit with Laragon as the WAMP development platform to receive the PHP codes generated by Appgini, so that you can immediately test out the generated web application within the same computer.

If you are using Linux or Mac OS, you can also install AppGini in your computer through PlayOnLinux or PlayOnMac.

Below are 2 of the screens in the generated web application, with sample data, using AppGini's default template. You can modify the looks and feels of the screen by choosing another theme of template and layout options.


The PHP codes generated by AppGini are pretty clean and neat.

In 1 or 2 man-days, by using AppGini, you should be able to produce a fully functional Northwind Orders system with ACL (access control) mechanism from zero. Imagine how many man-days you need to produce the same amount of PHP codes as shown below, by manual coding.

Northwind Orders system is used by Bigprof to demo the work produced by AppGini. You can access to its live demo system here, and can even download its generated source codes here. Beside Northwind, there are more open source web applications generated by AppGini which you can download here.

You don't even need to know about PHP programming in order to create web application using AppGini. Anyhow, you need to have basic knowledge on software development and concept of relational database to master the use of AppGini quickly.

Therefore, I found AppGini an ideal tool for educational purpose to teach and learn about web database CRUD programming concept, and also relational database concept, including the data structure, normalization, joining of tables, keys & constraints, etc.

Of course, AppGini is also ideal for software developer to quickly come out with something, then to further customize on the generated codes. This approach can really save a lot of time and effort.

AppGini is a trialware. You can click here to download AppGini free trial edition, which has no time limit of use, but has limitation on some key functions, including unable to save your AppGini project for future use.

If you like it, you can order its full version at the price of US$79.90 per user. I found that this price is one of the cheapest among its competitor products such as Scriptcase, PHPMaker, CodeCharge Studio, Dadabik, etc.

Hint: Click on the "Older Posts" link to continue reading, or click here for a listing of all my past 3 months articles.