Saturday, February 26, 2005

What I should be doing right now...Packing

  1. Staging the contents of the Attic into the living room so we can move.
  2. " " Basement Closets " "
  3. " " Laundry Room/Computer Closet/Work Room
    " "
  4. Break down rack leaving only the FW and enough gear to run this
    house until the new house is live on Tuesday.
  5. Break down the old HUGE
    UPS in the Laundry Room/Computer Closet into "3 man carry" portable bits
    so the movers can get it out of the house.(Free isn't always good)


What I
want to be doing right now...

  1. Rebuilding my Solaris 10 box with a
    failed Hard drive and upgrading to GA
    1. Rebuilding my FW to scavenge the
      SCSI card so I can access both sides of my old HP NetStore JBOD(see 1).
    2. Checking out this bfu thing and trying out Janus and ZFS although I am
      not really sure how bfu works.
  2. Continue working my way through the
    Dtrace manual (which depends on 1)
  3. Get
    running on my Solaris 10 box and use Dtrace to look at the
    internals(see 1).
  4. In conjunction with 3 play with slamd, ctrun and
    smf(see 1).
  5. Trying to not electrocute myself while isolating the short
    in my APC3000, and Figuring out if the APC2200 I have destroyed the last
    set of batteries or if the batteries were
  6. bad to begin with(Auctions Can
    be Bad, cheap junk is still junk).
  7. Most anything other than packing.


What I could be doing right now that would sort of qualify for both...but
not really

  1. Figuring out if the APC Trade-UPS program where they come
    and take away your old ups would include the removal of the behemoth not
    that I can really afford to buy 6KVA of new hardware to qualify even with
    the discount.


What I am doing right now...

  1. Playing
    Metaphysik: Ball Revamped II by John Cooney
    a silly flash game that now I
    feel the need to play again for better results.
  2. Reading
    Sun Blogs
  3. Wasting time posting to this blog :)

Friday, February 11, 2005

New House

We just got a message telling us that we have a walkthrough/inspection of
our new house on the 18th and a tentative settlement date of the 25th.

Exciting and scary at the same time. It has been a long wait and I am
ready to move.

It looks like the next couple of weeks will be all about the last of the
packing and cleanup of the current house. to clean and pack

Sunday, February 6, 2005

PowerBook as a serial console

A question about using a powerbook as a serial console was forwarded
around recently. I thought I would share my solution(which happened to be
suggested by more than one person).


I have been using a "Keyspan High Speed USB Serial
Adapter": a db9 -> RJ45
adapter, a rollover cable and ckermit

This solution has worked without a hitch for devices with RJ45 serial
management ports. Adding a additional RJ45 to DB9 and RJ45 to DB25
rounds out the connectors for basically everything else.


Another recommendation from someone using the same hardware is Zterm.

And now off to sleep.

So Not Funny: Shmoo Group International Domain Name Translation Spoof/Hack

The "Shmoo Group": has published an example of an
exploit which takes advantage of IDN to spoof sites for both "PayPal
http":http://www.pа and "PayPal https":https://www.pа

The links above should take you to "PayPal". Original "Shmoo
Example": and
"explanation": Using firefox and
setting "network.enableIDN" to false in about:config, will prevent
firefox from following the link, but the error is non-descriptive
resulting in a "[Translated Name] site could not be found, please check
the name and try again"

Update: I should mention that it does not work in IE by default, as
apparently IDN translation code is only available as a plugin.

IV Fluids and ABs really hit the spot

So I went to my local urgent care facility Saturday morning, after
expirencing some dizziness apparently this was probably due to sinus

With a slight rattle in my chest, a cough, and fluffy green phlegm the
doctor decided that I would benefit from a liter of fluid and some

I think he was correct, I felt much better today. At least until I got
some calls from the office. Talking on the phone for extended periods
made my throught itcy and scratchy again.

5 days left in this course of ABs, if things keep up I should be all
better. Now for cough medicine and sleep.

Smallest JumpStart Server Ever

I am planning on making the currently undisputed smallest JumpStart server

A "Sony PCG-U3":


In breif: Crusoe 933 MHz processor 6.4" (XGA) TFT-LCD 20gb HDD 512mb RAM
1.8 pounds 7.3" x 5.5"

I understand that I could maybe make a smaller server with a nano-itx
board, but not with a keyboard, display etc. in such a portable package.


So far, I have Solaris 10 installed and running, from a PXE boot
jumpstart install. That was neat, not as easy as booting a SPARC, but
not bad once I got the proper DHCP/BOOTP settings in place.

Unfortunately the box that did the initial jumpstart is currently unable
to see it's root disk. So I can't use it to share the media to do the
setup install server. I have all the hardware I need to recover one way
or another, but I don't currently feel like scavaging from my firewall
for another scsi card so I can see both sides of my old HP NetStore JBOD.


So the next step is probably to nfs share from my laptop to the PCG-U3,
possibly between commercials during the superbowl.

Firefox/Thunderbird and CodeTek Virtual Desktop

CodeTek makes a fabulous product called Virtual Desktop.

Virtual Desktops should be familiar to anyone who is/has used an X
window manager.

Effectively virtual desktops allow you to ararbitrarily aggregate
windows to reduce window clutter.

e.g. I have desktops for Mail, Browsers, Office Applications, Photo
Manipulation, Local and Remote terminal windows, and Code Development.

All of which are acaccessibleia hot keys and all of which have the
appropriate windows directed to them when new windows are created.

I have recently found an interaction bug with Virtual Desktop and
Firefox/Thunderbird. Fortuneatly I have also found a work around.

The problem presents as Firefox/Thunderbird (F/T) occasionally not accepting
input from the keyboard, although they do respond to mouse events.

The workaround:

If F/T are not responding to keyboard input, switch to a different
desktop and back. This has fixed the issue every time, since I have
started using it.