Tags: ubuntu

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  05:00:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 1412 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, BOINC

Orac Lives

Back on December 18th, Orac went down unexpectedly....it was shortly after I turned on the heat that morning. So, at first I thought it was a heat problem. I directed fans at it, dropped in a slot cooler, scaled back BOINC (eventually suspended it). But, Orac would suddenly stop. I watched thermal monitoring in cacti, and it CPU temps weren't hugely different than before. After a while, I had to go to work...so I left it off while I mulled options.

I tried changing the rear case cooler (when I had it open to add a slot cooler and check the other fans), I had bought a 92mm fan with the plan to replace that...but I discovered that I had bought the wrong kind. Probably could've made it work, but opted to try again. I don't recall if I ever checked if the CPU fan was okay. Last time I had cleared out a lot of dust from it....it wasn't full of dust this time, is all I recall.

After some more fiddling I started to suspect power supply, I had been thinking of getting a bigger power supply for it for a while...so I went ahead and got one, a Corsair Builder Series CX V2 500-Watt 80 Plus Certified Power Supply - CMPSU-500CXV2, along with different 92mm fan (a Zalman ZM-F2Plus 92mm Silent Fan). Mulling things some more and reading other online articles...I then added some more items to my order, like new thermal compound and a CPU cooler -- a Thermaltake TR2 M21 RX A4021 CPU Cooler for the Intel Processor 115W LGA775-Prescott -- which later turned out to be the wrong kind....need a 4 pin fan for CPU. Though wasn't convinced I needed a new cooler.... But, the stock cooler was rated for 95W, and Intel's website says my CPU does 105W.

Even though I got the new power supply on 22nd, and I took the 23rd off from work...I didn't get around to actually working on it until late on the 24th (after it was too late to get anything one-day Prim for the 27th.) It was quite an ordeal getting the power supply in...had to pop the fan off the CPU heat sink to get access to all the connectors and stuff. Put the fan back on too soon, so had to get it off a second time. This time it broke. Well, I guess I swap the cooler after all. Except then I discover that the new cooler I had gotten was the wrong kind. So, I go to Amazon to see if I can quickly get a different one. No luck there....so order one by regular 2-day Prime. I went with a Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 - 92 mm - 130W.

Original fan and the previous one I ordered, were the kind that blow to the CPU. This one has heat pipes and blows across. Reading reviews, I saw warnings about how much taller these things are and whether it would fit...so I decided that 92mm something was probably the safe maximum to consider. After narrowing through the choices via Amazon Prime...it came down to the one I got or the Arctic Cooling Freezer 13 Cooling - 200W. Since, I had about 72 hours to place the order...I held off, to see if there was anything else I wanted to add before ordering. Mistake. Later on Christmas day, the prices on lots of things...specifically these CPU coolers went up. And, the 13 went out of stock (by Prime.) Though I had decided the 7 was the more likely choice, since I didn't know which way I should position the cooler and it had four way flexibility. Though I suppose others would have the flexibility too...its been so long since I've done this kind of thing...I don't know.

Anyways...I finished putting orac back together with its new power supply, moved the slot cooler to the bottom. Removed the old heat sink/cooler (should've kept the parts though) and cleaned off the CPU. And, set Orac aside for later work.

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  06:05:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 633 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Travel, Healthcare, Printers

First 'download' from new IntelliPAP

So, I'm about to go off for a trip...and therefore take a little break from my IntelliPAP AutoCPAP machine.... )-o


&#59;D ....and go back to use my old M-Series Pro CPAP machine.

Anyhoo....a while back I had picked up a 'new' laptop computer

Well, the purpose of that computer was primarily intended to easily record smart codes from the readout of the IntelliPAP AutoCPAP, enter them on the intellipap website and generate my latestly report. But, the laptop is currently spending most of its time competing with my other laptop in the living room. But, I did recently pick up a Thermaltake Toughpower Ultra Slim 95 Watts Universal Laptop Power Adapter High-Efficiency USB Charging Port using Amazon Prime....to be part of a rush shipment of goods that I wanted before going to Chicago TARDIS. Except that I'm sticking with my old laptop for travel, and the reason I wanted a new/different laptop power adapter...was that the Compaq 6910p's adapter uses a 3-wire AC cord...and there isn't one easily available near my bed. So, buying a new power adapter that uses a 2-wire cord seemed the way to go. Though there are cheaper, slower shipping ones available.

And, wouldn't you know it...I was on that sight buying a pre-Black Friday/Cyber Monday special and forgot to get the power adapter I had looked at earlier as part of the order. And, now I probably can't...because the adapter alone isn't enough to get free shipping. But, what I did get is getting free shipping....and it would've be nicer to have it with it. Maybe later...

Though I remember why the logic broke....the other power adapter I was looking at, would've been more suited for permanent use in my bedroom (green features) and the Thermaltake more useful when traveling (can never have enough USB charge ports in a hotel room...) So, not sure what I'm doing now....should really finish packing. Took today off to do that, and I haven't started yet. :oops:

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  06:43:59 pm, by The Dreamer   , 165 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Storage

Another Harddrive is biting the dust

Two years ago I bought a pair of 1TB drives from NewEgg.

This being first Sunday and all, mdadm checkarray ran on Orac for several of the arrays (the 3 arrays that share the 5-bay port multiplier enclosures are excluded, and get run individually later....since running at the same time is slow)

Anyways....1 of the 1TB drives spat lots of errors....and Orac is pausing now as it spits errors now and then. Guess I'll look to getting a new 1TB drive via Amazon Prime?

I was curious, and went to check warranty status on Seagate....nope. Really, went over to NewEgg to see when I had gotten the drives and what kind of warranty it had.... Only a 2 year warranty. Guess that's that.

Wonder if I should buy one new drive, two new drives....and if I go two new drives....should I get bigger ones? They don't fit the original expansion plan I had....plus my usage has grown to where the old plan doesn't work anymore....

hmmm.... :hmm:


  02:19:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 1350 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Windows

The Gumby Torture has ended

That is Gumby was torturing me!

It all started around May 13, 2010....and could ended around...sometime back in April, 2011...but had to let it drag on to today...July 23, 2011.

Gumby had been torturing me more and more lately....largely because when I upgraded it in May 13, 2010...it became my second fastest system at home, and my fastest Windows XP box. Ole TARDIS was only a Pentium 4 3.2GHz w/HT. While new Gumby is a Pentium D 3.4GHz.

Though while TARDIS was still my main Windows XP system, I largely kept Gumby's role the same...though it did pick up a few things the ole Gumby didn't do, due to it having more juice and being less cluttered in its registry and driver hell. Like a new DVD burner, or running a few more CPU and/or memory intensive apps (things that didn't work to well on P3-933MHz and/or only a max of 512MB...)

But, the problem with new Gumby was that its a legacy free box. No PS/2 mouse or keyboard ports (though it's strange that I can still buy new systems that have one or two PS/2 ports, something about the reliability of PS/2 mouse and/or keyboard over USB probably... this KVM switch was kind of holding up whether or not I would be requiring PS/2 ports on whatever mobo I decide to build the new LHAVEN around.)

I had gotten USB PS/2 adapters to keep using my old keyboard/mouse and KVM setup on Gumby (though the keyboard and mouse have upgraded a few times since the Trendnet TK-408) Also, I think the mouse has always been a USB kind with a PS/2 adapter. Originally a ball type, now an optical type....some day I'll get some laser mice here and there...

Problem was that the USB PS/2 adapter was less than reliable or usable. I was still using the Kingwin one that I got to start with new Gumby. Which worked the best, except that every now and the the mouse would stop responding. I could have to stop using the mouse for a while, and it had to be absolutely still during the stop....and then something would reset and it would work again. I had tried a TrendNet, thinking it would go with the KVM....but switching away and then back on the KVM would cause the scrollwheel functionality to go away, and that required me to unplug/replug the USB adapter to get scrollwheel working again.

I also tried a PCI PS/2 card, but found that internally was just another USB PS/2 adapter...just in a slot consuming form, plus it didn't get along with the other PCI card (firewire, and I use firewire external storage on Gumby)...also it exhibited the same problem that the TrendNet USB PS/2 adapter did, except that its a little harder to unplug the card to reset it at will...

So, I stayed with the KingWin and set my sight on a KVM.

Full story »


  03:13:02 pm, by The Dreamer   , 817 words  
Categories: Software, Networking, WiFi

The Airport Express Tangent

Being that it is really hot today, I didn't feel like going out and figured I could tackle some of the many projects that I've been putting off.

Before I started, I happened to look at cacti...not sure why I had at first, but I went off and looked at the Airport graphs. Nothing has associated yet with my Airport Express, is there something wrong...with it or the clients?

Wondered if it was the use of manual versus automatic channel selection....perhaps it doesn't see the Airport Express as a strong choice, though sitting right next to it...it should've dominated.

But, I tried automatic to see what channels it would jump to. I was kind of surprised that the Airport Extreme jumped from 1 to 10. First in that I thought 1 was the best, and second I expected it to pick one of 1, 6, 11. Though when I was running the Belkin APs, I was running them on 2 and 10.....there is one other AP somewhere in the condo that is using channel 10. And, oddly...same SSID as I was using, except all lower-case (instead of capitalized). But, I've since turned off the Belkin APs...so I don't care anymore?

I then configured the Airport Express to automatic...and it jumped from channel 11 to 1. Okay then....let's see how that works.

Full story »


  07:29:54 am, by The Dreamer   , 382 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Storage

Speaking of running out of space....

....I ran out of space in backuppc last night.

However, it was party due to a bug that hits me now and then. An rsync backup of a large ~7GB file on the remote system, was resulting in a file file on my backuppc server that was growing without bound. If there were only some way that backuppc would know that if a file of size 'x' on remote was resulting in a file of size 'y' (where 'y' >> 'x') that maybe something is going wrong.

Sure the built-in compression might result in some increase in size for already compressed or incompressible files, which is typically the case of large files coming from the remote....TEBE backup file.

But, it seems pretty obvious to me that at 300GB and growing...something has gone wrong.

Silly thing is that the particular remote is being backed up twice. And, rsync backup's exclude list keeps growing and growing to avoid the difficult large files and letting just the other (SMB) backup get it.

Originally, when I first set up Zen, the smbclient in ubuntu had stopped being able to talk to Windows 7 shares. I had set up work machine using rsync method, just to see what that was like in comparison to the more traditional of using SMB method for my Windows boxes. But, some Windows update changed how Windows 7 shares worked....and samba could no longer talk to it.

I tried fiddling with registry and package uninstall/installs, etc. Looking for tweaks to the smbclient source that I could compile my own version, there was a time (early on) where I was using my own compiled version of smbclient....but I didn't block updates, and the next update worked. Well, after some point in time, another update for smbclient appeared from ubuntu....and it could connect to Windows 7 shares again. So, I put Zen back in with SMB. The total backup size is so much larger than the rsync version. Because tar doesn't seem to have any of the trouble of rsync (normally I think rsync is better than tar though, but suspect its all about the perl re-implementation of rsync functionality in BackupPC that is the problem....I heard in 4.0 that they have abandoned this approach and will run rsync on the backuppc server.

Ya...I think that's what I'll do....


  09:03:13 pm, by The Dreamer   , 1290 words  
Categories: Hardware, Software, Computer, Storage

New arrays on Orac

This is an owed post (of over 3 months in the making....) I had thought of lots of things to write for this since I meant to write it, but didn't write anything. And, now its so old...that I'm just going to be really terse....


The lead in to this posting was Worked on Orac yesterday. So, I got those 5 2TB drives...and first tried to make it RAID5 using mdadm. And, started filling it up....though the performance didn't seem to be much better using XFS, plus the new backuppc seemed to have regressed on handling XFS.... so I heard about ZFS on Linux....as kernel modules that do the taint. And, tried out RAIDZ, with its variable striping to maybe to do better on performance. It seemed nice, but then stack dumps filling up my logs....rebooted and then did a zpool scrub, and it went to work fixing lots and lots of errors, and then a few unrecoverable errors.

Guess no ZFS, and the XFS didn't seem enough of a gain to make it different from everything else. Even though there's one really big problem with ext4. Resizing it causes corruption. Supposed to be fixed now, but before I switched to the new array, I grew the backuppc volume for 3.75TB to 3.8TB, offline...and it resulted in corruption still.

So, I was making the new backuppc volume the full size of the array. As I mulled over the situtation...I decided that I would try RAID10, sure that wouldn't get as huge a boost over the old RAID6 array of 1.5TB, but it would still be an increase...and no idea what I'm going to do when I need more space. But, first I had to get a 6th 2TB drive to do RAID10. Plus it would mean that I would need to do something else with the 1.5TB drives. One was going to have to come out. Sure it could run degraded initially (though did find that it would come back after a reboot, guess the boot making degraded arrays come online...only does it for OS filesystems. Though the boot get's stuck because it can't mount filesystems and the recovery of mounting just doesn't work still. Getting into single user is such a pain too. Though after I broke my sudoers file recently, I turned off hiddenmenu.

The hard part about making the RAID10, was figuring out the ordering of devs...so that it was mirror across the eSATA channels and stripping with in. There's only 2 channels, and 6 drives in this array...so figured that was the best way to go. Though now that I've realized that its only PCI express 1.0, not sure if that was the best way to go. Though to try the other, would call for me to get 8 drives? And, who knows what the future holds for supporting backuppc....

internal bitmap on doesn't seem to degrade the RAID10 as much as RAID5 or RAID6, so I have that turned on now.

Now there was the question of what to do with the 4 remaining drive bays and the 4 1.5TB drives. Would I got with another RAID10, a couple of RAID1...would I concat them into the LVM for growth or make them separate.

Well, on the old 1TB array was my old MMC volume, which needed more space and part of the 5x1.5TB RAID6 was a backup volume...also in need of more space. I decided that I would go with two separate RAID1s using the Seagate 1.5TB drives (I had pulled the Samsung 1.5TB to make it degraded....that drive has since been hooked up to TARDIS for local backups).

Around this time, my Roku appeared...and I went through the various attempts to map a network drive to it for local content. Settling on the HSTI Media Stick and its 1TB maximum. I settled on going with 2 1.5TB RAID1 arrays. One of them was made fully available to be the new MMC volume. And, the other...I made a 1TB volume (called TARDIS) for the HSTI Media Stick, and the rest became the new backup volume.

The old 1TB RAID1 array stayed online, until it was recently repurposed into the volume for Time Machine backups (only 931GB).

Now I've been debating playing around with external bitmaps and/or external journaling to see if I can get more performance. But, external bitmaps go away after a reboot, and that just seems to be a bug that isn't going to get fixed anytime soon. external journaling would require me to find some devices for that....so I got the idea of PCI Compact Flash adapter and some compact flash cards....I have a couple of the PCI Compact Flash adapters....and I do have a few compact flash cards around. Though when I was playing around with ReadyBoost on Zen, I found they weren't really that great on speed. And, I was going to want to get as much speed out of things as I could here....so I did some checking and now I'm waiting to get around to buying some 600x CF cards to get around to trying this. The fastest card I have available in my collection is a 133x. And, I don't recall why I bought that one. Ones earlier than that would be left overs from when I had my PowerShot S20, then an REB1200 and then a Nikon Coolpix 5700.

These days, I'm all about the SD cards for my digital cameras (Eye-Fi), though been thinking of getting an ultracompact (and wearing my holster less often)....and some that I've looked at use MicroSD cards. Don't have any extra Class 10 ones laying about though....though I do have a couple of Class 6 8GB cards that need a home (I got them in a 2for1 sale, and the need for 1 didn't happen as planned....and when I do get around to getting that device, I'm sure I'll probably cave and get a 16GB or 32GB Class 10 MicroSD card.)

Full story »


  07:32:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 693 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Networking, Storage, Ubuntu

Time machine & NFS

Link: http://blog.mediafederation.com/andy-hawkins/mac-os-x-time-machine-via-nfs-on-linux-ubuntu-complete-guide-fixes-error-13-etc/

So, during the long weekend...I got to wonder why I couldn't have my work MacBookPro do Time Machine backups to a network share, I had envisioned coming up with a drive to attach to one of my Airport Extremes and doing that some day. Though it doesn't look like that's actually going to happen anytime soon.

Did a quick google search on Time Machine and SMB, and found out about:

defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1

And, so trying to make it work started. I created a Samba shared named 'SIDRAT' on ORAC...which I think is the name of the removable 160G drive that I had been using at home for Time Machine backups. The one at work is named 'TARDIS'. But, I already have a Samba shared named 'TARDIS' on ORAC....that's the 1TB volume for the HSTi Media Stick. Also not to be confused with computers named TARDIS and SIDRAT. Though SIDRAT died a long time ago, and I still haven't gotten around to replacing it....it was my Windows laptop.

At first I didn't have dedicated storage on ORAC for this...I was just exporting the subdirectory of another Samba share as SIDRAT. And, it didn't really make sense for it to be a subdirectory on that share...but it was where I had at least 80GB to spare to this....the drive in the MacBookPro is only 80GB.

It seemed to start, but then it would fail. I had picked just the usual options for creating the Samba share, and wondered if the Mac needed special stuff to work. So, I went looking....

Read about the:

touch .com.apple.timemachine.supported

trick...but that didn't work. And, wasn't necessary when I did get it working. :))

So, then I read about creating the sparsebundle to get it started. There was conflicting info on how to name it....the usual was start Time Machine, and see what name it creates and use that.

So, was creating "<host>.tmp.sparsebundle" And, there were some variations on how to invoke hdiutil to create this. Well, it went further...it slowly made it get smaller and smaller until it was gone and then went on to try to create "<host>.sparsebundle". Creating that as well didn't help. I had heard about "<host>_<MAC_ADDRESS>.sparsebundle", but the hits I found didn't explain just what MAC_ADDRESS would look like, or which one to use. Decided this wasn't going anywhere and the long weekend was nearly over....I did at least (after many long attempts) get a backuppc backup of parts of my MacBookPro. So, I got rid of the Samba share and undid most of the other stuff.

Full story »


  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....

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  12:03:00 am, by The Dreamer   , 1362 words  
Categories: Software, Computer, Networking, WiFi, Ubuntu

Freeradius & DHCP Failover

Link: http://deployingradius.com/

So, ever since I looked at adding Mac Address Access Controls to my Airport Extreme...on top of WPA2 Personal, and the fact that my DHCP server only does reserved IPs, security. I used to do Mac Address Access Controls on my previous routers, but it was an easier interface to work with on those. And, I didn't realize how the Time Access worked on the Airport Extreme, the default allow all the time rule at the top tripped me up. So, I thought if I wanted it, I would need a RADIUS server...and I didn't know if I wanted to do that....yet.

But, after I woke one morning and couldn't seem to account for why there seemed to be so much data streaming through my Cox connection...there had been strange spikes in the past, but always figured it was something updating itself while I wasn't home (like iTunes and my podcast subscriptions). But, this one morning...there was no corresponding activity from any of my computers, and I didn't see anything obvious with my TiVos/ReplayTVs. Though I could've just missed it.

So, I fixed the Timed Access control and put my current devices in. With a note that I should really look into installing RADIUS somewhere, so that it would be easier to maintain the list than the airport utility. I would lose being able to find the MAC address of some new wireless device that doesn't have the MAC address stamped on it....for addition to my DHCP server.

Later during the setup in: Another Airport comes to Lunatic Haven I had wiped out the settings....and didn't feel like putting it back in again. Which made it more urgent (in my mind) to get RADIUS working.

So, I went online and searched and searched and searched...on how to do this. I had looked before, and wasn't all that successful. There's no simple how-to apparently. But, I found bits and pieces around, and decided to just go for it.

First, I installed freeradius on my Ubuntu server 'box'.

sudo apt-get install freeradius

It starts right away, now to make it work. And, debug it. Well, most of the examples were for older freeRADIUS versions, so things weren't where it said, or command line switches were different, or it didn't work. I did find some examples of MAC address authorization, but they involved 'Auth-Type := Local' in the /etc/freeradius/users file. But, the clients.conf part seemed right. I strongly considered just doing 'Auth-Type := Accept'...but I wanted to figure this mess out.

client {
        secret = testing123
        shortname = airport
        nastype = other

So kept searching and searching....eventually, I found fragments on site called "Deploying RADIUS: Practices and Principles". It confirmed that I was basically on the right track, I just needed to figure out what to put in the users file to make it go from Auth-Reject to Auth-Accept.

Well, the example for MAC Address entry for users I had found was:

001122-334455  Auth-Type := Local,  User-Password == "testing123"

At first I was pointing my Airport Extreme at it and watching the debug output, and watching everything stop working now and then. But, eventually I used 'radtest' to test my freeRADIUS configuration. And, eventually, I found that what I needed was:

001122-334455  Cleartext-Password := "testing123"

And, all was good. I pointed my main Airport Extreme to it, and it everything adjusted and worked. I then pointed the new Airport Extreme at it and things continued to work.

Yay! &#58;&#99;&#111;&#111;&#108;&#58;

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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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