Archives for: June 2011

06/29/11

  10:56:35 pm, by The Dreamer   , 849 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Storage

Filled up PCIe x1 slots in Zen

When I had gotten Zen (HPE-450t), I couldn't resist and opened it up to see what it had inside, etc. And, one of the things I noted was that there were two available PCIe x1 slots.

Later during the initial setup, I found myself running out of physical USB 2.0 ports on the back. I did have a 7 port USB hub, but there's so many things out there that just don't like the extra layer of a hub. And, I had a lot of this things. While, I did later get a 24-port USB hub to help get everything connected to Zen. But, I felt that I needed to eventually get something in additional real USB 2.0 ports.

And, eventually I settled on wanting to get a StarTech 7 Port PCIe LP USB 2.0 Card (PEXUSB7LP). It actually only has 6 ports on the back, but it was the highest density PCIe x1 card I could find (there's an internal header, but its no use for me). I bought this back on Feb 3rd using Amazon Prime, of course.

Later as I was thinking of making my local backups go faster, I thought that I would grab one of the extra SATA RAID adapters (SIL3132 based)...that had come with the TR5M or its Rosewill clone...I didn't use either, because I had purchased on before I knew I was getting these enclosures for orac. And, the TR2UT that I had gotten initially didn't have a card....

Put that in Zen, and change how the TR2UT is connected to Zen now. Currently its using its built-in RAID1 ability and connected via USB2.0. I had tried both kinds of Windows 7 backups, but the file backups were taking longer than 24 hours to do the daily differentials...so I stopped doing that. But, the System Image Backup had saved me once before, so even though its a pain...I do that weekly...or try to.

I makes Zen pretty slow...the VSS really hurts things I guess, and it can take close to a day to run. Though it had been getting shorter, though for no reason that I know of. I used to start it at 11pm on Tuesdays, in the hope that it wouldn't impact me too badly come Wednesday night (I tend to be out the early part, so it would help). But, then it started taking less time. Perhaps there's been a Windows update to it. So, now I start it at 10am on Wednesday...usually well after I get my morning stuff done and off to work...and hope that in finishes before I return from my Wednesday evening activities....

Or come home to find out that it failed for some unknown reason and try again.

So anyways...on February 13th, I evidently bought a 2m eSATA cable from Amazon Prime for that project.

Meanwhile...Drobo S....

Full story »

06/26/11

  06:03:57 pm, by The Dreamer   , 681 words  
Categories: Home, Appliances, Healthcare

I got another Lasko 52" Oscillating Pedestal Fan

Link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000RMJANY

I bought the first one of these almost 2 years ago....I probably should've bought it in the first place.

A few weeks ago, there was an overnight thunderstorm and powerblip. Later I noticed my Oreck XL Air Purifier was angry, it gets that way now and then after a nasty blip...but looks like this was the last time it would take one. I had been thinking of getting some new air purifiers anyways, guess it is time. Though I wasn't really ready to get one for this location (Computer Room). Of higher consideration was one for bedroom, TARDIS corner or Kitchen Hallway (thinking something wall mount in the vicinity over where my trash can is...)....TARDIS corner was the one that needed something more, because there wasn't anything there at the moment. At least I have the old Surround Air in the kitchen or an undersized Kenmore by the bedroom.

A few days later, I discovered the tower fan in the 'Computer Room' had stopped working. Well, it was a cheap one that I had picked up from Wal-Mart when I had first moved here...almost 5 years ago. I don't think the blip got it, more like the plastic gearing in it has worn out.

I thought maybe I could knock two off with one, and get a tower air cleaner to replace both....so what I got via Amazon Prime was the Bionaire BAP1525RCW-U PERMAtech Tower Air Purifier with Remote Control. Probably an okay air purifier, though inconsistent with what I've been getting lately...and it is rather noisy and doesn't move much air around...so, I'm still going to want a fan.

I did consider moving it to TARDIS corner, but there was another problem with this Tower Air Purifier....it was shorter than my old tower fan so even if it could delivery the air volume to be a fan, it didn't have the height. OTOH, it was taller than I had room for in TARDIS corner....

Shortly after this, I received an email from RichardSolo.com....their Electrostatic Air Purifier was on sale for $99 'til about Father's Day. I had looked at getting one of these at one time years ago, but that need went away and I forgot all about it. But, it seems to work well tucked into TARDIS corner....so guess I got that 'priority' taken care of. Only just put it into service today, so haven't had time to experience much else with it. Though I'm thinking I'd like to get a second one....to replace the Brookstone ESP Air Purifier that I use at work...which had become intermittent in operation some time ago. The Brookstone ESP Air Purifier was like $99 when I got it....so that would seem right. Perhaps it'll be on sale again at a later date.

Full story »

06/20/11

  10:17:34 pm, by The Dreamer   , 610 words  
Categories: Hardware, Storage

TARDIS got a new drive...sort of

So, after I finally replaced the backup drive on gumby...I noticed a strange whining sound, but I couldn't figure out where it was coming from, so I went on to other projects.

Later when I was going to bed, I found it really annoying...so I went to look for the source.

Well, it was emanating from TARDIS....I eventually decided it was probably the external drive, and tried to safe remove and power it off to confirm. I couldn't get it to disconnect, and TARDIS was wanting to reboot after having applied patches but also wanting to know if I wanted to update other stuff.

So, I ended up turning the external drive off hard. That stopped the whine. Eventually, I got things mostly patched and set it reboot and went off to bed.

Full story »

  07:01:02 am, by The Dreamer   , 134 words  
Categories: ReplayTV

Just heard the news, ReplayTV is dead.

Important Announcement!

The ReplayTV Electronic Programming Guide (EPG) Service will be permanently discontinued on July 31, 2011. After this date, owners of ReplayTV DVR units will still be able to manually record analog TV programs, but will not have the benefit of access to the interactive program guide. Effective immediately, monthly billing for the ReplayTV service to remaining customers has been suspended.

The industry conversion to HDTV is complete and ReplayTV DVRs are unable to take advantage of the wealth of HDTV programming. Please contact your service provider for current offerings.

Guess my (2) lifetime(s) is about to end.... :..(

Wonder if its just guide data, or if the other services like time setting, activation, IVS are shutting down as well.

Guess I don't need to be looking to replace the drive in one of my lifetime units.

Tags: dnna, replaytv

06/18/11

  05:40:36 pm, by The Dreamer   , 841 words  
Categories: Hardware, Software, Storage

Gumby got a new drive

It isn't that new....in fact I had picked it up from a clearance table a couple months ago. But, it sure is tiny compared to what was sitting in its place before.

For sometime, the latest storage configuration was a pair 300GB firewire drives and a 1TB firewire drive connected to the box and its 160GB system drive. The 1TB drive broken into two partitions...1/3 & 2/3...the larger as MMCVideo storage and the smaller for local stuff. The 1TB replaced what was 3 300GB firewire drives, when one of the drives failed....and it was a total loss, but I had restored some 400GB from backuppc to recover.

I had kept the 2 remaining 300GB drives as a two set disk2disk backup of the system drive (with the help of Retrospect 6).

Well, the remaining two 300GB drives had started failing a few months back. One of them failed completely a couple months ago....prompting me to eventually buy a new drive.... But, the other 300GB drive continued to work more or less and I changed the backup schedule to only use that drive. It did lead to some bad crashes now and then, but apparently not enough to take it off.

This morning while I was looking at other things, including tweaking backuppc...and push some fulls now that I'm in a quiet period of system activity (gumby is now more of a TiVo Desktop machine than MMC, but its kind of a quiet period for new TV...even though I'm really behind on my watching, and could find that some recording didn't happen and then need to find somewhere to buy the show....)

But, I decided it was time to retire the other 300GB drive before something worse happened...and break out the 250GB drive I had purchased.

Full story »

06/05/11

  09:52:32 pm, by The Dreamer   , 1090 words  
Categories: General, Software, Networking, Android

I took The EFF Tor Challenge

Link: http://www.eff.org/torchallenge

Earlier in the week, I got an email from EFF about their Tor Challenge. I had looked at Tor some time ago, but it seemed like a hassle to use. But, I am a support of EFF, and not just because I had lots of ReplayTVs and now a few TiVos.

So, I decided to take another look at Tor....I had started worrying about my privacy with some of my online activities, and I do support various human rights issues, etc.

The challenge called for setting up a relay. So, I continued looking and what I needed to do to make it do that. ORPort prefers to be either 9001 or 443...well, wouldn't go on 9001 on Orac, it conflicted with another service that I'm already running. So, it would have to go on a different port.

That, meant figuring out how to NAT on my WRT54GS...it doesn't do port NAT on inbound forwards, so I had to figure out how to add entries to iptables to make that go. That took some doing, but eventually I got that working. Not before I accidentally lost my rc_firewall, and had to restore for a rather old version. I should probably see about doing some kind of automated backup...

It defaults to going with exit relay, and I decided to go ahead...but use the 'reduced exit relay' policy. To see how that would work.

I set bandwidth and transfer limits on things....but first instance on the 'Orac' actually hit the limit, which made it hard to night surf for my own reasons. And, while I was on the torproject site, I decided to take a look at Orbot for both my Android phone and my Android tablet. And, I suppose I'll want to run it on my laptop.

One problem I seemed to have is that I couldn't get tor to work locally on my android phone on wifi, but it worked on 3g. I figured its some kind of conflict with the tor network seeing the relay at the same IP. Though later it started working, maybe that was the relay went into hibernation. I did set up 'Orac' as a central proxy for everything at home. Strange that when I think of private surfing I tend to use my DSL and general surfing on Cox. I had gone with default gateway on 'Orac'...so it was going Cox.

With everything seeming to work well, I opted to set up another instance of 'box' to use my other Internet connection. That didn't go as well, because the ISP blocks a lot more inbound connections than the other. But, I got it working. And, I poked around some sites here and there before calling it a night.

Pages: 1· 2

  08:38:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 601 words  
Categories: Hardware, Software, Computer, BOINC, Storage, Ubuntu

Got another brain for Orac

So, the other day, I was poking around on NewEgg.com, trying to decide if I wanted to get the upcoming ShellShocker. I spotted a single slot GT440 for a good price among the daily deals. While I was looking around, I saw other things that caught my interest...a powersupply tester. Or things that I needed to go with the card, like a DVI-I to VGA adapter. Also decided to grab a new fan, since it is probably only a matter of time that the fan in the other drive array on Orac to fail.

I ended up not getting the ShellShocker item.

I've been eyeballing getting a single slot 400 Series card for Orac for a while. Was originally going to get a 200 Series, and I did actually get one in a different ShellShocker deal. But, when I opened up Orac, I realized it wouldn't fit....due to its huge fan.

Not sure what I'll do with that card. But, I had been looking at 400 Series, because Zen came with a GT420....which I've learned is a pretty horrible, compared to the rest of the line. Especially when it comes to doing BOINC. I'll probably go GTS450 or GTX460....single slot, though I need to take a look inside someday to see if there's actually juice in there. Otherwise, maybe I'll want a second one of these...

So, I had picked up the card from the UPS Store on Friday...but I didn't get around to installing it today. I stopped checkarray before I shutdown. I changed the scheduling of checkarray to spread things out better.

Though I had a brief distraction this morning on another matter, which I'll be posting about soon...

But, I went and put it in...its a pretty tight fit sitting next to my PM eSATA card.

I wonder if I'll look into a slot fan to go in the open PCI slot there....the lower PCI slot is where 4 other eSATA....oh wait, I had gotten a PCI card that I was going to put into Orac. I wonder what happened to that project....

Pages: 1· 2

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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