Archives for: September 2008

Pages: 1


  11:07:18 pm, by The Dreamer   , 239 words  
Categories: Software, Computer, Travel, Storage

This evenings activities

Today after lunch, I popped into the K-State Computer Store....and walked out with an Iomega Ultramax 1TB External Harddrive - dual interface (USB 2.0 & FW400). Sticker price was $205, but it rang up as $199 + Tax.

As soon as I got home from work, I set it up and went to backing up my system using it.

Haven't worked out how to get the other machine backing up....since the old external drives are USB 2.0 only, and the old computer only has FW400 (and USB1.1). But, the SATA enclosure I got for upgrading the internal drives on this computer is also dual interface. So, I suppose if I step up the upgrade of the 250G internal drive to a 500G...the old 250G drive can be backup to my old machine.

Meanwhile, as Ohio Linux Fest looms closer and closer...I decided it was time to upgrade Firefox on my ASUS Eee PC 901. I was kind of annoying that 3.0.3 came out so soon after 3.0.2, but hopefully enough time has passed now that it is safe to upgrade the 3.0.1 to 3.0.3. I think the only thing left is tweak Thunderbird to access a few more email accounts. And, I should be ready to hit the road using it. Think I'll leave the work laptop home this trip. But, I'll probably bring it along for LISA...since I'll probably have to do work during it.

Wonder how the Thunderbird on the EeePC updates.....

  07:56:47 am, by The Dreamer   , 86 words  
Categories: Software

email to b2evolution 2

I had gotten getmail.php working for my situation after first upgrading to 2.4.1 – email to b2evolution....but evidently I never used the functionality again until find that it had stopped working. Not sure if it was 2.4.2 or 2.4.5 that broke it.

I found it failing with:

PHP Fatal error: Call to a member function get_Group() on a non-object in /path-to-b2/inc/_core/_param.funcs.php on line 1617

But, I got it working again....I changed $loop_User to $current_User

The Dreamer


  11:20:00 am, by The Dreamer   , 600 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Storage, Ubuntu, Windows

Drive Backup Failure

I'm about to take the plunge on buying an external 1TB drive....I had been eyeballing one on and off for some time.

I currently use a pair of 300GB drives (Maxtor OneTouch II's) to do backups of my main (XP) PC. And, I have one that does backups of my other Windows (2000) PC.

But, recently I ran out of space during a backup....which shouldn't be that surprising, since I had recently upgraded the primary drive from 120GB to 400GB. Total raw capacity 650GB. Initially, the plan was the 1TB drive would supplement my backup capacity. Especially since I plan to upgrade the other drive at some point (250GB to 500GB).

Though the backup was running slower than usual, apparently the drive came up in legacy USB mode after the last power the backup was estimated to take a week or so, instead of the over 8 hours that it had grown to (normally the full runs once every 6 weeks, on Tuesdays while I'm at work....but often it continues to run well into the evening when I get home now)...the incrementals run around 2am and haven't gotten in my way. Though they also only run on weekdays, since they would conflict with tape backups, though I haven't run one in a long time....haven't taken the plunge on getting another pulled drive off of eBay.... Don't know when or if I'll revisit this.

Anyways...I reset the drives (unplugged/replugged) and then they started flying along again....I did notice that one of the drives seemed noisier than the other....and then during the backup, it made some really horrible sounds. So, I guess that drive is failing. Kind of unexpected.

I'm planning that the 1TB drive will support Firewire (the OneTouch II's used to, but I had to change their enclosures....and got USB only ones), hopefully it'll be more reliable. I suspect the USB issue is because not everything I have connected by USB draws power from USB...and some aren't on UPS. ... So switching back to Firewire will hopefully keep things running fast by separating things, if for no other reason....

I had been planning to get a DROBO at some point to be the backup...though it is hard to justify the cost of getting a DROBO just for this type of storage, when I also have a crunch to add storage of other sorts. And, I also have plans to play around with other ways of adding storage....

Meanwhile, I discovered that backups had stopped working some time ago on my other Windows (2000) PC. It spat a disk error when I tried to run one by hand. I tried reformatting the OneTouch II drive, but the format failed. So, I guess that drive is toast. And, I'll be in the market to buy another drive for it.....since that old box only does Firewire. It did have USB (1.1) ports...but some time ago, the port seem to have gotten zapped....because they don't work anymore. The machine has 3 other 300GB drives connected to it for storage. But the OneTouch only backs up system files. The rest is primarily DVArchive storage. And, I'll probably never get around to watching those shows....

The other important archived files are also stored on my (Ubuntu 8.04LTS Server) Linux box (which is doing RAID1. I plan to hang more SATA drives off of it, and see what RAID 5 is like....someday. Would also like to try Port-Multiplying).

So, I guess I'm in the market for 2 Firewire drives.....though the OneTouch II 300GB that was on here was overkill don't know what I'm going to do. This may involve some thought and some juggling..... :??:



  11:27:24 pm, by The Dreamer   , 186 words  
Categories: Software, Computer

ASUS broke my Firefox 3.0.1 install on EeePC901.

I had previously talked up how I had upgraded my ASUS Eee PC to use the latest Firefox, over the soon to be unsupported Firefox that it comes with.

Then on September 10th, the "Asus Update System Update" magically installed....well, it was a different update of the same name. It caused all kinds of problems to my EeePC.

The one I apparently failed to notice was that it had trashed my Firefox. Today, I was trying to launch it...but nothing. So, I restarted. The Firefox then thanked me for upgrading....huh? :??:

Call up the version...its That's a downgrade.

I still have the archive of 3.0.1, so I reextract it. Now firefox won't start at all.

I try various incantations...but basically the mistake was overlaying the new back over the original directory...without tracking down the mess caused by ASUS. I ended blowing away my /opt/firefox directory and then dropping 3.0.1 and then fixing plugins and the desktop shortcut.

And, after the announcement that I've upgraded back to 3.0.1...a quick test to see that the plugins are working, etc. And, off to bed.... :yawn:


  10:30:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 771 words  
Categories: Home Theatre, Hardware, Computer, Storage, Amateur Radio, Ubuntu, Windows

Upgrading the primary drive in TARDIS

Once again, after some thought yesterday, I decided that I'm going to pass on getting a new Windows XP computer. Even though I was eyeballing something based around a Phenom X4 based system. And, my old XP machine is almost 5 years old....and new systems are getting scarce.

What I'm now thinking about is getting both a Mac Mini (for my Home Theater, though this may change or get dropped...depending on my mood, etc.) and an iMac (for the bedroom). What I'll then do is get VMWare Fusion for the iMac, should the need for a newer Windows environment arise. The only question is the timing of the iMac, and the thought of getting an iPod touch. (which cuts into my plan to get a VX8R?)

Anyways...I decided that if I'm going to keep the old XP machine, I should stop procrastinating on upgrading the drives in it. I had seen warnings that the primary drive was going to fail, and had purchased Acronis Easy Migrate a while back with the plan of upgrading this drive. It is only a 120GB drive. I could of gotten larger, but I didn't think I would need all that space at the time. Though I had since added a secondary drive of 250GB, and even that one is getting kind of full.

So, I was about to make a note to myself to buy a 500GB drive, when it occured to me that I had pulled a 400GB drive from the post-icepocalypse Gateway (Core 2 Quad) machine I had gotten. It came with Vista, but I had no interest in running Vista. It was purchased to replace my Linux server, though I resurrected that its just an Ubuntu play box. Though I was hoping for PM support to do raid on it. But, I haven't taken the plunge to see if it'll work for its just a fast BOINC engine at the moment....and some file storage.

Anyways, I decided to upgrade the primary drive in TARDIS using the 400GB drive. I went and got the USB/Firewire/eSATA to SATA/IDE enclosure that I had purchased and set aside for this purpose and set out to try running Acronis Migrate Easy.

Hooked it up using Firewire first....strange, my computer seems to have gotten too quiet. Seems the firewire interface is disabling my sound. But, when I went to 'migrate' wouldn't. It failed quickly on the reboot, and various other forms of failure. I figured maybe there was a problem with it being on Firewire. So, I switched to USB.

That didn't help. It was reboot and then fail, and then reboot back to before. I slipped other activities in during the process, and eventually it was I called it a night.

Pages: 1· 2


  07:17:17 am, by The Dreamer   , 137 words  
Categories: Software

There's this annoying quirk of FF3.x where the toolbar tip of stuff will appear on screen when Firefox is no longer the in front (or minimized). And, there's no way to make the toolbar tip go away until Firefox is back in front.

And, it happens even when Firefox has been pushed back for some time.

I came across a tip on turning this off in about:config. So, I tried it yesterday.

This morning I found a problem with having changed this parameter to false. XKCD no longer works. :..(

For those that don't know, Randall Munroe puts extra text in the TITLE tag of the web comic images. With this option disabled, the TITLE doesn't pop up anymore :`(

Wonder if there's a way to make TITLE's work, but the annoying toolbar tips from appearing.... U-(


  06:44:41 pm, by The Dreamer   , 875 words  
Categories: Digital Photography, Software, Computer, WiFi

I got an Eye-Fi

It is kind of a chore to take my memory card out, put it into my reader and transfer the images into a folder on my I decided to take the plunge and get an Eye-Fi (Share).

So far in hind-sight, maybe the Eye-Fi Home would've been sufficient.

After extracting it from its interesting package, I skimmed the quick setup (no Linux, so no Eee PC support...hmmm) I plugged the supplied USB reader into my work MacBookPro. And, went about getting it configured. First thing it wanted to do was upgrade its Firmware.

It saw my home wireless network, and got the key from the MBP...and then went to verify itself on the network. I immediately knew it was going to fail, and started looking at allowing it to work on my network. Wait. What's the MAC address of the Eye-Fi card? :??:

It eventually timed out, and it suggested that I may need to allow its MAC address to connect to my network...and provided it.

So, I added the MAC address to my allow list for my Wireless Network and then told my DHCP server to expect it and give it an IP.

While stuck in the step, it asked if I wanted to upgrade the software. Opt to skip, and continued the initial setup.

It presented the online web albums to store at....I saw Facebook was one of the choices. But, seemed to me that any album on Facebook is basically shared with some or all people. And, I tend to want to tweak (crop, sharpen, adjust contract, brighten, remove red-eye, straighten, etc.) before making the public album. Though Java uploader has never worked for me....

Then it offered a local location to upload to. Except that it only offered locations on my Work MacBookPro. Guess can't (easily) have to going to some other storage repository on my home network (initially, I'd probably want a share from my Linux server, but some day I plan to get a NAS device [or two, or more] on my home network). Some day, I'll expend the effort to create this repository....

I then went and did a test shot. It seemed to just barely get the shot transferred when the 1min auto shut off took place. Its advice is disable auto power off completely. Except that's not an option, and not something I want to disable anyways. Instead, I increased it 2min. Hopefully that'll be enough for the majority of cases, without sacrificing my ability to have usable power in the disposable AA batteries that the camera keeps eating up. :>>

Plus I had thought of increasing the timeout...because it is kind of nuisance how short 1 minute is when you are waiting for that right moment to snap a shot, especially when I had to expend extra effort to get things set up (like get the camera to lock focus in the right vicinity).

I poked around in settings a bit more, and then went to my Windows computer to set up a more permanent local storage location.

I popped the SD card into my attached card reader (instead of the supplied one). Installed the software and set things up....I opted to update the software on here right away. And, then changed the location for local uploads. I also set up the web upload, though I'm not sure what I need that for....since almost never share raw pictures. I just manage using Picasa.... Also looks like no magic hook between Picasa Web and the Windows software. At least not in the Web to desktop direction. :|

But, I couldn't access the wireless profiles on the SD card using this reader. So, I plugged in the supplied one. It wanted to reboot my computer to work...I said later, but then it started working anyways. But, not much to do here. This computer isn't (directly) on no profiles to transfer over and no interest in trying to associate the card with other networks it sees.

Fiddled around a bit more, and then went back to the Work MacBookPro to update the software there, and to see if I could add additional network profiles. Namely add my work ones without having to take it into work.

But, it wouldn't see the card my SD card slot (# memory card in 1 ExpressCard34 adapter)....Had to use the supplied USB card reader again. This could prove to be annoying. And, turns preloading of network profiles :no: Guess I will need to take it into work to set it up to work on the wireless network there. Also means that I'll still need my computer, and still need to pop the card out, etc., to get on to other wireless networks. Of course, it says it won't work on networks that use transparent and/or captive proxies. That means the only other network that I might want to add is my parents' network. But, the plan was to leave my work laptop at work, the next time I go on vacation. :**:

Wonder how the local computer uploading works from work and other remote networks. Or what happens when I travel and there are no 'open' networks for it to use. Etc. )-o

  03:29:45 pm, by The Dreamer   , 560 words  
Categories: Furnishings

Continued Great Service


A few months ago, I noticed the problem I originally had with my Select Comfort bed had reappeared. Some missing segments on my (wired) pump remote. It had beed just about the same amount of time since I got the remanufactured pump unit for the last time I experienced this problem.

They had indicated then that they wanted the 'failing' unit to determine the cause of the problem and address it. So, I guess it isn't totally surprising that I've experienced the problem again.

Despite my continued effort to be careful with the remote, the problem has reappeared. I kind of suspect is doesn't like that occasionally the remote does slide off the edge of my bed and on to the floor. But, you'd think that I'm not the only person that this kind of occurrence happens to.

One random morning, when I was looking at an empty search box....I decided to see if there was anything out there about my problem. I got distracted reading about problems in general that people have had.

Evidently I don't fall into that group.

At first it was an intermittent miss a few segments...and they would sometimes come back and others would leave, etc. With no apparently indication of why the changes were happening. But, then a few nights ago...remembering that my back was sore that morning, I went to see what pressure my bed had changed to. Felt like it had gained about 20.

Well, I was stumped.

Only one segment was working on the display. I could tell whether the indicated number ended with a '5' or a '0'....I had to go by feel that night. As it was, I apparently hit the right number...because a couple nights later enough digits returned to tell what I had dialed up.

But, annoyed that all I could tell was whether the number ended in '5' or '0' and annoyed that my back is bothering me again...I went to fire off another customer support request to see about getting the pump replaced. I knew the bed is supposed to be a 20 year limited warranty....though I wasn't sure how things fall with the 'limited' part.

I did wait a long time to get a response, but I see that this happened the last fact I've forgotten when I sent the support request (fairly sure it was like midnight Labor day or something). So, it wasn't like forever.

But, I got the email today. They said they want to confirm my delivery address, so they can replace my pump at no cost under my warranty by UPS Ground.

The only struggle was whether to have them ship to my home address or another address to have somebody receive it for me. I opted to have it go to my home address. Shouldn't be a problem if the UPS guy has to make a second delivery attempt should I not know to expect it on a certain day. There will be other planned UPS deliveries coming up.

I sure hope that they have worked out the kinks and that this'll be the last time I deal with this problem until I buy my next Select Number bed. Which I kind of would like to be sooner than later...hint, hint, hint :))

"I'm now a 40" :wave:


  06:25:55 am, by The Dreamer   , 149 words  
Categories: AT&T DSL

Another blip in the DSL upgrade

It is day two of the latest DSL upgrade. No change in sync rate, since its already reached the upgraded rate. But, DSLreports spectrum analysis gives somewhat more room on the downstream. Guess that'll ensure a stable connection.

Downstream Maxrate (Estimated): 6708
Upstream Maxrate (Estimated): 952

Bit tones with notches/missing bits:

bit(s) 38:43   		163.875   - 189.75    KHz
bit(s) 49      		211.3125  - 215.625   KHz
bit(s) 59:60   		254.4375  - 263.0625  KHz
bit(s) 67:68   		288.9375  - 297.5625  KHz
bit(s) 88:90   		379.5     - 392.4375  KHz
bit(s) 92      		396.75    - 401.0625  KHz
bit(s) 100:104 		431.25    - 452.8125  KHz
bit(s) 106     		457.125   - 461.4375  KHz
bit(s) 118     		508.875   - 513.1875  KHz
bit(s) 120     		517.5     - 521.8125  KHz
bit(s) 133:137 		573.5625  - 595.125   KHz
bit(s) 147:150 		633.9375  - 651.1875  KHz
bit(s) 162     		698.625   - 702.9375  KHz
bit(s) 169     		728.8125  - 733.125   KHz
bit(s) 172     		741.75    - 746.0625  KHz
bit(s) 176:186 		759       - 806.4375  KHz
bit(s) 190:191 		819.375   - 828       KHz
bit(s) 197     		849.5625  - 853.875   KHz
bit(s) 199:200 		858.1875  - 866.8125  KHz
bit(s) 203:212 		875.4375  - 918.5625  KHz
bit(s) 218:219 		940.125   - 948.75    KHz
bit(s) 228:255 		983.25    - 1104      KHz

No change in Line Attenuation, but S/N Margin is now ~8.5


Now instead of subjecting some poor random forum to a long rambling thought, I will try to consolidate those things into this blog where they can be more easily ignored profess to be collected thoughts from my mind.

Latest Poopli Updaters --


There are 20 years 1 month 25 days 6 hours 43 minutes and 13 seconds until the end of time.
And, it has been 4 years 11 months 2 days 7 hours 19 minutes and 43 seconds since The Doctor saved us all from the end of the World!


September 2008
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
 << < Current> >>
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30          


  XML Feeds

Who's Online?

  • Guest Users: 1
This seal is issued to by StopTheHacker Inc.
blog tool

hosted by
Green Web Hosting! This site hosted by DreamHost.

monitored by
Monitored by eXternalTest
SiteUptime Web Site Monitoring Service
website uptime