Archives for: May 2011, 29

05/29/11

  10:48:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 930 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Networking, WiFi, Printers

Another Airport comes to Lunatic Haven

That's another Airport Extreme....

The corner where I put TARDIS and my HP Photosmart 8450xi printer have been having switch problems, or at least I that's what I thought. But, I have replaced the only cable to replace, and both switches. But, still the link will drop out of gigabit after a while. And, then it wouldn't go into gigabit at all anymore.

And, then PRTG reports that things over there disappear every night. What's strange is that its always around the same time.

I thought about buying some network testing equipment, and figuring out what it would take to run a new line in place of the existing one (should be easier than what it would take to run one to a new location). Or doing the ugly and stringing wire along the ceiling....

But, things started adding up....and I wondered just how much I needed the speed. Sure gigabit would help TARDIS backup faster, but that's about all over 100Mbps would get me. The printer is only 100Mbps, so no advantage there. And, likely would be the case for any network printer I were to put there. And, likely not much else is going in the corner any time soon that would need gigabit. So, I wondered about revisiting the WDS option using 802.11n now. I had survived for some time with 802.11g WDS both here and in the past.

Looking at WDS options with my Airport Extreme, it pretty much came down to two options....an Airport Express or an Airport Extreme. Express only has a 10/100BaseT port on it and its a big plug type thing, so if I wanted better than 100Mbps, it would have to be an Airport Extreme. I did look at other routers, but hard to tell if it would work or not, and I'd probably want something using OpenWRT or something and things started getting complicated again.

I do someday think I'll get an Airport Express...though it would require that I have Linux solution to manage it, some way to set it up in a turnkey solution....as a travel router.

But, while I was looking at other WiFi router options...I was looking on eBay, so I wondered about an Airport Extreme that way (instead of using my Educational discount on another).

And, I found some pretty reasonable prices for refurbished units, so I went for one.

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  11:43:05 am, by The Dreamer   , 804 words  
Categories: Stuff, Software, Computer, VoIP, BOINC

Death to Skype! Bring me its head!

Link: http://jeff-duntemann.livejournal.com/281642.html

Years ago, I had installed Skype on various computers thinking that I'd jump into the whole using my computer for VoIP calling either as a supplement to doing VoIP using ATA's or successor. It revived buying webcams and/or headsets on my newer computers. I bought a webcam for my dad. But, he never used it.

And, I've never really used any of the many new webcams I keep buying either. But, recently I've met some friends on line that are into chatting online using Skype. I did do it once, and it was a strange experience actually talking to people....rather than the usual type into a window or web form chatting that I'm accustom to for online chat. But, they weren't into the webcam feature of Skype, so I don't know if I'll ever get to use that part for more than just as the microphone. (Which I might not do, since I bought a headset for one of my computers...)

Meanwhile, yesterday on Gumby....the computer I installed Skype and a(n HP) webcam onto, because ole TARDIS wasn't feeling up to getting new hardware (the plastic tab in some of its USB ports have broken off, though the kind of still work sometimes....not as bad as the old Gumby where the front USB ports didn't work at all anymore....And, I was using a PCCard USB adapter to help...)

Anyways, yesterday I recall seeing this EasyBits Games or something dialog come up, when I was checking some stuff on the machine. It had been up for over 16 (reached a max of 16.8 this time, TARDIS is currently at 35.52 days), but it seemed confused. A java app said it was out of memory, though there was plenty on the machine (over 1900MB free)...so I tweaked its JVM settings. Though later I discovered that PRTG had stopped running at some point. Someday I'll install Nagios, or something and replace that aspect of PRTG that I use. I had switched to running it, because bello-monitors-the.net ceased operation a few months back...and I was using it to monitor the performance and availability of this blog. At first PRTG seemed the solution to doing this...but its more annoying than just works, so I'll probably look at some other online service...

Anyways, suddenly with no explanation my screen went dark and the lights went out on Gumby...a moment later it was booting back up. Nothing in the event log to explain why it had gone down. I came back later to see the finished boot, and dismiss the various dialogs that come up during a boot and see why PRTG was complaining about something I was sure I had told it to stop monitoring (LHAVEN....I haven't finished that post yet). That's when I saw the huge gap in data, and it had apparently stopped working sometime yesterday morning (this unexplained reboot was around 5:27pm).

I vaguely recall seeing a strange dialog from Skype in reference to EasyBits Go games, seemed odd that Skype wanted me to install something like this. And, I have Skype in offline state on this computer...since I had upgraded to Zen...and Skype is online there. But, I dismissed it. I wasn't interested in it. But, later I saw that it had installed itself anyways. :##

Then a strange Flash Player install dialog, not the usual one from Adobe that comes up now and then. But, it seemed to do the normal Adobe Flash Player install...the except it was the kind that tried to install crapware with it, that you have to figure out the checkbox to uncheck to not get it before downloading it...while needing to check other boxes for it to proceed.

Guess I should've read it, because it was yet another part of the Crapware infestation that was coming to my computer via Skype/Microsoft.

Did a quick google search this morning, and found out how that its realy crapware, because the uninstall doesn't do anything...have to do more complicated stuff to remove it.

:rs::rs::rs::rs::rs:

Found the steps to eradicate it at: Jeff Duntemann's ContraPositive Diary - EasyBits GO, Skype, and The Crapware Problem

:rs::rs::rs::rs::rs:

Just firing off this quick blog post and then to reboot.... :cool:

Wonder if the Free AVG will catch it later, or if I should install something like Norton Internet Security (I seem to have gotten a 3-seat license, but I'm only using it on one computer at the moment....I do need to upgrade the version of Trend that is running on TARDIS, but getting NIS working and not working on Zen has been quite the hassle...so maybe I'm still looking, at least its SONAR isn't going after BOINC like NAV used to on TARDIS....wouldn't be so bad, if it didn't start doing that just after I extended it for another year.)

Wonder if I shouldn't just remove Skype while I'm at it.... :hmm:

  08:04:33 am, by The Dreamer   , 203 words  
Categories: VoIP, Cox HSI, AT&T DSL, Broadband

Saturday was a bad Cox day....

....another day that justifies also having DSL service.

Of course, on top of much more downstream and upstream, Cox also has lower latency. However, the thing that would benefit most...I have using DSL, my home telephone service...because I need the availability.

And they keep trying to sell Digital Phone....they do claim that I can keep my Broadvoice number, which would be a requirement. And, the current bundling savings me a ton of money....at least for the promo period. Hmmm, though its only the Essential bundle of digital phone...which is less services than I get now, including services I want...and normally for much more than what I pay Broadvoice. Though with bundling, it would only only cause my current service plan to go up by a couple of dollars. And, long distance would cost me more....

Wonder when U-Verse is going to get here. Annoying that some units in some buildings can get U-Verse, other units in some buildings have U-Verse. But, it says my unit in my building doesn't exist....yet I have DSL and they send me bills for it, so I surely exist somewhere....

Not sure if I'd go Internet only, or Internet + Phone. Phone seems to be missing one feature.... simul-ring.

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.

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