Categories: "Home Theatre" or "3DTV" or "AppleTV" or "Blu-Ray" or "Boxee" or "Cable HD DVR" or "DVDs / NetFlix" or "HD Movies" or "HDTV" or "Momitsu V880N" or "OTA HDTV" or "ReplayTV" or "Roku XDS" or "Samsung HLN4365W1" or "Samsung UN50ES6500F" or "Time Warner/Cox Cable" or "TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite"

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06/21/10

05/08/10

  01:30:12 pm, by The Dreamer   , 956 words  
Categories: Stuff, Home Theatre, Computer, Home

Got Another PowerSource 400

The other day, as I was rebuilding my 5 disk RAID array (which I mean to blog about someday)...for the umpteenth time. A storm came in one morning....this made me concerned about losing power and breaking my RAID in some bad state (it had happened once before). Now I did have the computer and its two disk arrays (and as it turned out monitor) on a Geeksquad 1285VA UPS. And, more serious now that I have quite a lot of data backed up onto this array using backuppc. Had gone through some scary periods where I thought I'd have to start over from scratch.

But, decided that may it was time to put it on a PowerSource 400, like my other two Linux servers. So, I went to my usual source....not available from there, but it listed 3 other sellers; two selling for substantially more than it used to sell for and one selling refurbished units. I went looking around online for other sources, including one other that I had considered as an alternative option (because they shipped using FedEx ground). Found that pretty much everybody that had listings for it, showed it as discontinued and not in stock. I check eBay, there were a few listings...but they were mostly of the store demo variety....seemed too risky for me, given past experiences.

So, I put it in my cart for the next time I was going to place a home bound Amazon Prime order (a PowerSource 400 is a heavy item, so even if I don't know when it'll arrive...I wouldn't want to be lugging it back from the UPS Store).

As it happened, the seller shipped it by UPS Basic, and the mail man showed up with it on the day that I stayed home sick....ran the bell twice and then left it on my door step (took me a while to unmask, get out of bed and find some pants). I didn't immediately set it up....but found somewhere to plug it in to at least charge. I was fully discharged, so it would take a while.

Later that evening a big storm came into the area, alert said golf ball sized hail....it sounded pretty intense out there. Just had to happen as I was trying to do the UPS swap. Discovered some oddities about how I have things run for power around my desk that I had forgotten about. But, I think it is all sorted out now. Though I may opt to move the monitor to another UPS at some later point.

Currently, monitor, server (orac) and the two raid boxes (2 drive - RAID1, 5 drive - RAID6) are on this 'new' PowerSource 400 and its reading 250-260W.

Annoyingly the literature doesn't give an estimate for loads >100W on the PowerSource 400....so I'm not really sure how much time I'll get at this...but hope its something. For comparison. 'lhaven' on its PowerSource 400 is reading 100-110W, and 'box' and the network gear (5 port gigabit switch and g access point) on its PowerSource 400 is reading 150-160W. I may pull the access point off the UPS at some later point in the future, since it is deprecated as I mainly use my Airport Extreme now...which is in another location and on a PowerSource 400.

That other PowerSource 400 is reading ~130W...it has 2 TiVo HDs, both with DVR Expanders, router, 16 port 10/100 switch, and the Airport Extreme. I was originally planning to add a RAID USB storage device to the Airport Extreme...though not sure now...that I have my work Mac Book Pro set up as a client to backuppc. (it also rarely comes how now.)

I don't think I have the courage to test how long any of my PowerSource 400s will actually last....but so far I've been happy with the ones that have endured the few extended outages I experienced last year.

I wonder what will be the successor to the PowerSource 400....and whether there'll be more PowerSource 400s, or what, in the future for me.

Pages: 1· 2

05/04/10

  11:26:40 am, by The Dreamer   , 1745 words  
Categories: General, Digital Photography, Travel, TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite

Penguicon 8.0 and beyond.... #pcon

I have returned from Penguicon 2010 (8.0), something I almost didn't go to. But, I'm glad I did. I saw lots of interesting panels and things, I met up with people that I only see at Penguicon.

Why did I almost not attend this year? Well, last year I took a lot abuse for volunteering at Penguicon 7.0 and I was pissed about that whole experience, even though I had prereg'd for this year. I was ready to walk away from the prereg and never come back.

It continued to be a possibility throughout the year...and I mentioned the possibility online a few times on facebook and twitter. I got a few DMs and such that I would be missed ... still on the fence, I went ahead and booked the hotel. Knowing that I could cancel as things got closer. Like last year I had booked hotel for OLF, but right when it was finally time to investigate booking airplane tickets...I opted to cancel that, the bills from the bike accident were eating up my discretionary credit funds and I was more committed to going to Chicago Tardis later on.

As Penguion 2010 drew closer it was time to decide if I would not attend or lock in an airplane flight. Around that time there was a lot of twitter traffic about Southwest, which I was considering the use of. Though in the end I went with Delta since they had non-stop service from MCI to DTW. I was concerned that I might need to check a bag on the way back, but I ended up not buying all that much at Penguicon. OTOH, maybe I do wish I had gone Southwest...because it was a miserable flight going up...because even though paid for a full seat, I only had half seat to sit in...the guy next to me required a seatbelt extender and was pouring into my seat. And, the plane was full so there was no where to go and it was a fixed armrest so I couldn't get that out of the way....plus the flight attendant didn't seem to care that I was spilling into the aisle because of lack of seat, just that I was in the way of the beverage cart....

The flight going back was somewhat better, except for the 45 minutes between leaving the gate and finally leaving the ground of Detroit. And, now it looks like I have a RoadRunner issue to resolve. They changed me a return fare, even though I paid for a full roundtrip fare at the beginning.....again. They are probably punishing me for being a frequent traveler and having my credit card information on file. Could be why another passenger wanted to make sure that Roadrunner wouldn't keep her credit card information if she paid with a credit card....though the answer didn't say they wouldn't, she paid with the credit card anyways.

Back to pre-con....even though I had booked the flight, as well as after I had made the Roadrunner reservation and the scheduled the hold of mail. Though this year I didn't prearrange transportation in Detroit, and just winged it with taxi service....an extra $85 each way. Wonder how that compared with 2 years ago....darn Quicken doesn't make this easy.... Hey, I came out better...2 years ago it was $190 roundtrip. Though on just that part....probably.

But, I was still considering not attending.... Now penguicon.org is among my daily bookmarks, and also around the time of deciding to pull the trigger on the Roadrunner reservation and mail hold...was the announcement that Geeks with Guns was now on for Penguicon. So, I fired off an email to inquire about getting registered for that. That was a big of an ordeal, since for a while I didn't hear anything. And, things at work were getting crazy, so I was contemplating letting work throw my balance more off and not go. But, doing Geeks with Guns was something I couldn't see myself passing up on. While I never got confirmation, and didn't know when the assembly was taking place, etc. It happened and all was good.

Though don't think I'll ever recover getting work and life back in balance....since I maxed out at 304 hours about 1.5 years ago and have lost some 13 days of vacation time. Of course the wheels fell off at work the day I started this vacation....but, I did well enough at keeping this a vacation. Did fix some stuff while I was waiting for my flight at MCI, was nice to see they finally fixed the netmask issue. And, I did some more the first night using hotel wireless, which wasn't included in the hotel rate, and I incurred charges for 3 of the nights. I got it that first night, mainly because I wanted to hit the Narcolepsy chat on TalkAboutSleep, though I almost didn't make it because I got invited to do ConCom supper at TGIF....a new experience for me, having not found much to do the Thursday night in previous times....and later there was a pre-consuite gathering. But, I wanted to turn in normalish...so that I would at least be well rested for the start of the con, and for doing Geeks with Guns. Though the chat was still going on, on account of the time difference, so I caught the end of that....and ended up going to sleep at what would be a normal time without the timezone difference. Though I woke before the alarm....which could be more to do with my current set of sleep issues rather than anything to do with the con. Maybe I should've packed the Ambien...but usually I sleep better in hotels than I do at home.

Though it wasn't quite that way, since my allergies were really bad this time around...

I didn't bother getting Internet the next night, but got it Saturday night so that I could poke around a bit on my servers at home and get my doctor who fix. Think wireless at the hotel might note have suffered as much if there were some organization of it. Since, I found other people also getting it through other means. I may have gotten wireless too early on Saturday night...because it takes a while for TiVoToGo to process. Though it was hard getting the media file from home to the hotel. I do sometimes think about getting a SlingBox, but not sure how it'll work in letting me access all 3 of my TiVos (well, there's only 2 right now, but I'm thinking of a third -- TiVo Premiere -- down the road). I know you can access content on other TiVos from one TiVo, but my TiVos are pretty tight on space....in fact due to being at Penguicon....I have had content bumped off of my TiVos. Though it was likely that I would never find the time to watch those shows (mainly movies and miniseries are the oldest content on the boxes....guess I'll just set up a wishlist recording to see about finding the show in the future again, or use other technological solutions to catch up....should I ever get to that).

I eventually got around to getting the fix Sunday morning...and later ran into groups of people doing the same.

I also renewed my Internet when it expired Sunday afternoon, so that I would have some Internet post con...and before checkout. Though I wasn't auto checked out....but I left my laptop on overnight so that it could trickle the pictures from my camera up into the cloud somewhere. Should go and see about getting it down from the cloud....

As for the Con, it was informative and fun...and there were times where there was too much stuff to choose between (though other times where there was a lull, some good...some bad....) I didn't have to totally depend on the consuite for food during, since there was some reasonably priced on site food available....though its availability and variety was somewhat lacking. IE: Sunday lunch....I wasn't sure I wanted to do pizza again, I suppose chicken strips might have been an option....so I went up to see what the consuite was having, but they were tearing down...so I went back downstairs and cash lunch service had ended. And, then it was time for the next panel that I wanted to see...and that was back to back with others for the rest of the con. pigging out on chips (or something) and other snackage during the dead dog is what I did....was fine.

Though maybe that's why I'm sick now. Or maybe I shouldn't have gone with more pizza when I got home last night.

One thing I did get to do at the Con that I wish I had...was to learn and play some games. I missed out on the times when they had Settlers of Catan and Carcassonne out, and the Fluxx event didn't happen because the previous thing ran long, so the event person chose not to show up and run it. Learning new games might have been interesting, but seems when the opportunity presented itself....I didn't have enough time to commit to the experience. That's a sign of a good con, right?

Biggest change I did this year? I had resolved that if I did show up, I wasn't going to volunteer again. Since, the volunteer experience at Penguicon 7.0 (along with a few other issues like #beefline) was what ruined things for me.

One thing I didn't do at Penguicon 7.0, that I wish I had asked about during this con...was see if I could get a shirt of that con. Though I did get a shirt of this con, and I plan to wear it to work tomorrow.

Now since I didn't volunteer this year, the idea of pre-registering for next year didn't occur to me until it was too late to do so. But, right now I'm thinking I do want to come back next year (even though up until the con, I had been telling people that this was to be my last Penguicon). The reason is that it seems to be the only time I see the friends I have made at Penguicon.

Though I think I need to work on diversifying which cons I attend, and there are other cons in the vicinity of Penguicon weekend that I think I might want to check out someday. I suppose if it were such a huge ordeal (along with cost) to do cons, I could do more and closer together.....but I haven't won the lottery yet. Guess we'll see.

04/04/10

  08:05:03 pm, by The Dreamer   , 5 words  
Categories: DVDs / NetFlix

DVD: Planet 51

03/28/10

  07:25:27 pm, by The Dreamer   , 5 words  
Categories: DVDs / NetFlix

DVD: Surrogates

03/20/10

  09:54:32 pm, by The Dreamer   , 18 words  
Categories: DVDs / NetFlix

DVD: 2012

Link: http://www.netflix.com/Movie/2012/70108779?trkid=226870

I rated this a 4 stars; because there's no half stars on NetFlix, but their estimation was right.

:rs::rs::rs::rs::ys:

Tags: 2012, dvd, netflix

02/28/10

02/12/10

  07:41:08 am, by The Dreamer   , 298 words  
Categories: ReplayTV, TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite

Today I've decided to commit

that's commit to lifetime service for my TiVo HD's.

Hard to believe that I'm coming up on 2 years with my first TiVo HD. First year I did monthly fee on a 1 year commitment, and when that was ending, I opted to pay for a year in advance. As that nears completion, I got an email with a promo code to get lifetime service for $100 off.

I had considered getting lifetime last year, but $399 was a little hard to jump on at the time. Of course, $299 now...probably would've been cheaper if I had jumped on lifetime last year... but, hindsight being what it is and not yet being graced with a TARDIS.... )-o

Meanwhile, a short while after I got the first TiVo HD, I had pulled the trigger on a second TiVo HD. Got the first in March, 2008 from woot.com, got the other during the summer in preparation of the new fall season (July). That one started on 1 year commit month-to-month with Multi-Service Discount (MSD). Lifetime service on that with the MSD is $299, which I could've gone with when my first year was up...except that the disparity of costs per unit and order of unit acquisition or other strange think that is me :crazy: I couldn't rationalize the move....so I made no new commitment and stayed month to month on it.

But, now that I've pulled the trigger on lifetime for my first TiVo HD....it has cleared the way for me to also get lifetime on my second TiVo HD. Though due to the timing of renewal dates, the second TiVo HD will get its lifetime service before my first TiVo HD :lalala:

Now what am I going to do with my two (remaining) ReplayTVs both with lifetime service (one's a 250G and the other's a 300G)..... :hmm:

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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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