Starting Android Studio behind a proxy

I recently installed the latest (stable) version of the new Android Studio, the one based on IntelliJ IDEA.
The installation went OK but when i started the program, it remained stuck in the splash screen, with a message box saying: “getting Android SDK Component information” or something like that. Then, after 10 minutes or something, it finally timed out and loaded another screen, the Setup Wizard, that should help you configure Android Studio on the first startup. Same thing happend, it remained stuck for about 20 minutes, then told me that something was wrong and so the application could not be started. That’s it, it seems that you can’t do anything about that.
As you might imagine, it’s a network related problem. Actually it is clearly stated that you should have a stable internet connection to run Android Studio without incurring into any problem. The point is I had a stable and fast Internet connection so the problem came down to the network proxy. After I tried to start AS without Internet (it failed immediately) and with a tethering connection with my phone (it quickly moved on from the first screen and greedily tried to download all the things from my phone), I was in a weird situation where I really needed to tell AS to use a proxy before starting but, unluckily, I could not do that without starting it and, without the right proxy setting, it won’t start.
Or will it… I also have a clean Intellij IDEA installation on my computer so I thought that, since they are basically the same thing, I could try to set the proxy on IDEA and see what happens. Hopefully it stores the information in some human readable configuration file and I can steal that snippet and paste it on the corresponding AS file.
After a bit of searching, it turns out that it is exactly the case. I found the file other.xml in the folder %HOME%\.IdeaIC12\config\options, where %HOME% is, quite obviously, your home folder under Windows.
The desired snippet is the following:


<component name="HttpConfigurable">
    <option name="PROXY_TYPE_IS_SOCKS" value="false" />
    <option name="USE_HTTP_PROXY" value="true" />
    <option name="USE_PROXY_PAC" value="false" />
    <option name="PROXY_HOST" value="101.116.3.251" />
    <option name="PROXY_PORT" value="3128" />
    <option name="PROXY_AUTHENTICATION" value="false" />
    <option name="PROXY_LOGIN" value="" />
    <option name="PROXY_PASSWORD_CRYPT" value="" />
    <option name="KEEP_PROXY_PASSWORD" value="false" />
    <option name="myGenericPasswords">
      <map />
    </option>
    <option name="myGenericCancelled">
      <set />
    </option>
    <option name="PROXY_EXCEPTIONS" value="localhost,127.0.0.1,101.*" />
  </component>

You can copy and paste it under the corresponding other.xml under %HOME%\.AndroidStudio\config\options and it will do the trick.
Done this, AS started without any problem.

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Black screen of death

Problem:

When using the Chrome browser by Google, HTML5 videos show a black screen, audio is working normally.

System details:

AMD Radeon video card, Windows 7, Google Chrome version  33.0.1750.146 m

Solution:

The problem is caused by the hardware acceleration option (I am still not able to understand the details of the problem). As I read in a Google forum, you can partially resolve the problem by disabling the “use hardware acceleration” option. To do so, go to chrome://settings/, select “show advanced settings”, scroll to the bottom and deselect the use-hardware-acceleration option. The only problem is: once I have done this, the “full screen” mode does not work properly anymore. When you set a video to the full screen mode, it only takes a portion of the monitor on the left upper side of the screen. I suspected that the Catalyst software had something to do with this. Catalyst is a software by AMD that manages the drivers of your video card and set/reset the commutable graphic cards feature. So I started Catalyst, searched for Chrome in the “commutable graphic cards” view and set it to “energy saving” value. I am sorry if you cannot find the name of this options in your Catalyst interface: I’m trying to translate them from Italian to English and I am not sure about it (Unluckily I have an Italian version of Windows 7 and, sometimes, it stupidly install Italian localized software even if I do not want it). After that, everything returned to normality.

The story:

I struggled with this problem for quite some times. probably months. I got away with it because the vast majority of the videos on the Web (and on Youtube in particular) was embedded with the flash plugin, that continued to work fine. Once in a while I could stumble on a black-screen video and  momentarily switch to Firefox to watch it. It was no big deal. But now it seems that Google decided to shift an awful lot of video from Flash to HTML5 (a good thing, in principle) and that made my Youtube experience unbearable. Then the usual syndrome kicked in: are you really trying to keep me away from HTML5 videos, Chrome? no way. this could well be the last thing that I do, but I will see that fucking cat video inside Chrome, in full screen mode.