So, the announcement of FreeBSD 9.2 came out on Monday [September 30th], which I missed because I was focused on my UNMC thing. But, once it appeared, I knew that I was going to want to upgrade to it sooner than later.
From its highlights, the main items that caught my attention were:
But, I did start this upgrade on October 4th....where for an unknown reason, I launched the
freebsd-update process on cbox, the busier of the two headless servers. I suspect I went with doing the upgrade on my headless servers, because they are entirely running on SSD and would likely see the benefit of lz4 compression. And, perhaps I did cbox, because it was the system that could most gain from lz4.
It took a couple iterations through
freebsd-update, before I got an upgrade scenario that could proceed. And, it took a long time given the high load that is cbox.
That is cbox is an Atom D2700 (2.13GHz, dual core) processor. And, cacti (especially with the inefficient, processor/memory intensive percona monitoring scripts -- might help if only scrpt server support worked, and wasn't just a left over from what it was based on.) being the main source of load. That is usually in the 11.xx area, except during certain other events (like, since 3.5, when
cf-agent fires...cbox is set to run at a lower frequency than my other systems.) or when the majority of logs get rotated and bzip'd. And, there's also some impact when zen connects to
rsyncd each day for
backuppc. But, these spikes weren't that significant. Though the high load would cause
cf-agent runs to take orders of magnitude longer than other systems, including its 'twin' dbox.
Also ran into a problem (again?) where a lot of the differences that
freebsd-update needed resolved were differences in revision tags....some as silly as '9.2' vs '9.1', others had new time stamps or usernames, but seldom any changes to the contents of the file. Which I then discovered a problem from having some of these files under
cfengine would revert these files back to having '9.1' revision strings, which confused the
freebsd-update. I ended up updating all the files in
cfengine to have the 9.2 versioning, though I thought about just removing/replacing it with something else entirely, though wasn't sure the impact that would have on current/future
Though it did seem to cause problem with the other two upgrades, where it would say that some of these files were now removed and asked if I wanted to remove these. Which doesn't make sense, since it didn't say that with the first upgrade. It was probably just angry that these files already claimed to be from FreeBSD 9.2.
It also didn't like that I use
sendmail, therefore my sendmail configs are specific to my configuration, or that I use
printercap is the one auto-generated by cups, etc.
But, once it got to where it would let me run my first "
freebsd-update install". I ran it, rebooted, ran it again, rebooted, updated stuff (though it didn't complain as much, perhaps because some of the troublesome kernel mod ports had corrected the problem of installing into
/boot/kernel, or perhaps enough stayed the same between 9.1 and 9.2, that things didn't freak out like before. And, this includes the virtualbox kernel mod, when I did the upgrade on zen, and later mew. But, I re-installed these ports and lsof. I did a quick check of other services, and then upgraded the 'zroot' zpool to have feature flags (which now means it no longer has a version, apparently instead of jumping the numbers to distinguish from Sun/Oracle it has eliminated having version numbers (for beyond 28) and having flags for the features added since. Wonder if the flags capture all has changed since 28, since I thought there have been other improvements internal that aren't described by version numbers. Namely, I seem to recall that there have been improvements in recoverability....namely it had been suggested, when I was trying to recover a corrupt 'zroot' on
mew, to try finding a v5000 ZFS live CD. Which I don't think I ever found, and gave up anyways when I concluded the level of corruption was too great for any hope of recovery and that I needed to resort to a netbackup restore, before the last successful full get's expired. Though being that it was nearly 90 days old, the other two month fulls didn't exist due to system instability that eventually caused the corrupted zpool (eventually found to be a known bad revision of the Cougar Point chipset and a bad DIMM...things seem to finally be stable from using a SiI3132 SATA controller instead of the on board, and getting that bad DIMM replaced....was weird that it was a Dell Optiplex 990, purchased new over a year after the problem had been identified and a newer revision of the chipset was released. I did eventually convince Dell support to send me a new motherboard and replace the DIMM. The latter was good, since I had to use DIMMs from another Dell that had been upgraded, so I had less memory for a while. But, while at first I did use the onboard SATA again, eventually I started having problems that would result in losing a disk from the mirrored zpool, to eventually causing a reboot where they would both be present again [though gmirror would need manual intervention]....and moving back to the SiI3132 has finally gotten things stable again. Though the harddrives in mew are SATA-III, so it would've been desirable to have stayed on the SATA-III onboard ports, where it was these ports that were the main source of problems in the prior defective version. Perhaps the fact that the prior version had a heatsink and the new version didn't, wasn't because they didn't need it to try to compensate for the problems caused by over-driving the silicon for the SATA-III portion. But, an oversight with the newer revision motherboard. The problem did tend to occur in the early morning hours on the weekend, when not only is there a lot of daily disk activity, but there is also a lot of weekly disk activity, etc. Oh well.)
So, after upgrading the zpool, and reinstalling the boot block/code. I then rebooted the system again. I had already identified the zfs filesystems where I had 'compression=on', so had written a script to change all these to 'compression=lz4'. Which I now ran.
And, then I turned my attention to doing dbox.
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As I may or may not have mentioned, Zen failed to boot after it got the latest set of Microsoft patches on February 15th. After various attempts to recover, it has been declared lost. I haven't gotten around to resurrecting it.
So, I've been making do with a Windows XP VirtualBox that I have my on Linux system (starting to look like when I do get around to resurrecting it, I'm going to try 12.04LTS Desktop and Windows 7 in VirtualBox....)
First was EncoreViewer. How do I recover that historical data. I knew where it kept the files, because I had copied them from TARDIS into Windows XP mode. The question now was how do I get the files out of Windows XP mode. In the end, the answer was WinImage...to merge the differencing-VHD that Windows XP Mode uses, into a single file and then convert it for VirtualBox use. Could've gone direct...except that I found first try with WinImage didn't work...so second time I converted to a fixed VMDK file, and then converted the fixed file into a dynamic sizing virtual disk for use on VirtualBox.
Though later I realized that I only want it as read-only....to get my data back....anyways.
Next question was how do I recover my data in SmartLink.
I installed it into my Windows XP VirtualBox, and wondered where does C:\ProgramData exist in Windows XP space....but, while poking around, I remembered it has a backup/restore database option...and wondered if I had ever done a backup.
I lucked out. The last time I used the software was the only time I had ever used the backup function....and that's just perfect, I restored from that and then did my latest downloads from both my xPAPs.
Just have to see if I remember to do another download before my next doctor appointment. I didn't print anything, because I hope that by then...I'll also have my new printer.
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.
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.
One of the things that helped me rationalize getting the Roku XDS, was the possibility of displaying media content on my HDTV. I used to be able to do this with my Momitsu V880N, but the mmc software doesn't work under Windows 7...and I guess I'm not ready to take the plunge on getting a Blu-Ray player....though it might happen later this year. And, when I do..the one I'm looking at would support DLNA sources on my home network.
Well, then I heard of Gabby, which will expose local content to my Roku...and I could access DLNA sources. And, that worked once. The software is currently beta, largely my experience is that it'll crash, or crash, or spin. Often I'd come home and find tons of error dialogs and its stuck, or it'll have gone away on its own, or my machine will be really slow and I'll find that the process is consuming all my memory (but there's 16G in there) or CPU....or both. But, it did work, so maybe someday it'll be usable.
And, then when it doesn't crash...its hit and miss on whether the selection will play completely or the Gabby software will crash at start or during play. But, I did play a few shows successfully.
But, last weekend, I got a file that I wanted to play on my Roku...and I could not get Gabby to work, even ran it through handbrake, even though it was already a format that would be playable via USB.
I ended up watching the file on my computer....
Last night I was lazy....and then I was reminded of the Narcolepsy, Hypersomnia and Fibromyalgia online chat at talkaboutsleep.com.
Don't really remember what I did and didn't do install-wise, spent most of my time shopping online to see what options there were to adding more USB ports to the back of Zen. Other than the 6 ports on the back, there are 3 on the front. Two with the media card readers and one behind the door on the front. But, those don't count for regular device usage, because I want to leave the one behind the door free for when I need to plug something in (most likely a USB stick -- I recently got a Kingston DataTraveler 200 in 128GB ) And, the other two will likely get small dongles 'permanently' installed in them in the future....when I get around to the purchase of those items. Hopefully the two items will be small enough to fit there together. One is a small flash drive for ReadyBoost use, and the other is a BlueTooth dongle. The latter is for plans to get back in to video chatting, and to pair one of the many bluetooth headsets I have around that I haven't used yet.
Right now there's only one free USB port on the back...and by the end of this post, it'll be gone. After this post, I'll plan to order some USB hubs... Meanwhile, looks like the StarTech PEXUSB7LP 7-Port USB PCIe adapter is in my wishlist....or rather in my Amazon cart for a future Amazon prime moment. It'll give me 6 more ports on the back of Zen.
Oh yeah...I started the copying of more stuff from my old computer. I got up to (but not including) "Documents and Settings" on the C drive, and I skipped by 'bin' folder since that'll take some sorting through to update, etc. Plus there's probably missing dependencies that I haven't gotten to yet. This morning I continued to copy over more stuff. I got through drives E, F, and H. I had like 17 long running streams going when I switched to look at other migration work. Plus I had copied some directories with the intent to go back and clean them out. Some of the dialogs were giving an estimate of 1 day. Though as other streams finished, things sped up...both for that stream and the transfer speed over my network. Guess ole TARDIS couldn't push data fast enough into many copy sessions to keep the network as busy as it could be. (was only seeing ~50Mbps rather than the possible ~250Mbps).
Eventually, they did finish, so I cleaned things up. The big item that I wanted to move was so that I could move Momitsu Media Center over to Zen. Though I don't actually use my Momitsu V880N that much these days to stream video files....since I've been playing with open source tools to convert video files to TiVo format and getting those files on to a TiVo for viewing. But, perhaps I'll get around to actually doing this...I haven't yet.
Oh yeah, I tried setting up Skype last night. I recalled seeing it among the preinstalled stuff, so I tried that. It was like version 4.1, and it wouldn't connect. I tried disabling the firewall (I have it on at the moment, though I trust my home network and I trust that my routers keep the outside out....but for the moment it hasn't gotten in my way....) that didn't help. I signed into the Skype site to make sure that they were there and that I had remembered my account info correctly. I knew it was the same ID as my eBay account, but a different password... I had it installed on my other computer (Gumby), which has a webcam, etc. But, it had crashed one morning and I hadn't done anything since. As it turns out later that day the news of widespread Skype outages came out, and now that I've read the details on The Register... it fits... Anyways, I uninstalled the pre-installed version and installed the latest from skype.com and then I was able to sign in (with firewall enabled.)
ASIDE: One annoyance with this HP computer, the keyboard has a compressed middle key area....and I use things like Home, End, Del, PgUp, PgDn more often than I would've thought...so the change in layout is annoying. Guess I might have to see about getting a new USB keyboard for my new HP.
Did find something interesting while setting up webcam. My monitor (the debranded one from Woot, attached by HDMI) shows up as a speaker option. I knew it had speakers, but I didn't connect the speaker audio cable to it. Well, it can get it digitally via HDMI. And, the sound is pretty good...in some ways better than the Sony 2.1 speakers I'm using. But, I'll leave the Sony 2.1 speakers as my primary. Not sure what I'll use the discovered monitor sound for.
So, when the copying finished. It was time to finish the configuration of GoodSync to synchronize or backup the various document directories on Zen to the other places. And, then I decided that I should get to configuring my new webcam... one of the items I picked up from staples.com to pad to free shipping....not really sure I needed a new webcam, though I probably wasn't going to move the HP webcam on Gumby...though another one wouldn't have been bad. I also have a collection of past webcams, though not likely to have Windows 7 drivers for them....even though a couple of them were really nice webcams....at least back in the day. But, the new webcams make the old ones pale in comparison now. I especially like with both, the HP one on Gumby and the Microsoft Lifecam HD5000 that I got for Zen, webcams have autofocus. The only thing neither offered is the ability to reduce depth of field or blur out my background. I forget what I did in the old days....perhaps it didn't matter because the apartment I was in was poorly lit (rooms either had no light fixture, just a switched outlet...or a very cheap low wattage bulb in the available fixture.)...so I had spot lighting from halogen torchieres. And, probably just went by CRT glow when I was online. Oh wait...the Microsoft Lifecam's software does have a background blur option....guess I'm saved.
Guess the thing to finish things off, so I can eat and do some online shopping is setup Messenger.....
actually, pretty bad....
So, while I was looking at the items for the 'lhaven' upgrade...I happened to type other things I might want, and came across a PCI PS/2 adapter.
The new 'gumby' is legacy free...which was causing problems working under my KVM setup. Not quite ready to upgrade the KVM to one that does both PS/2 and USB....so I've been using USB to PS/2 adapters. So far I've tried two. Kingwin and Trendnet. The KVM is a Trendnet, so I kind of hoped the Trendnet one would work.
The Kingwin was first....it works pretty good, except that once in a while the mouse to stops moving. I have to let the mouse sit idle for a moment and then I can move it again. If I don't let go of it, the mouse still being active prevents the 'reset'. Annoying....
So, I got the Trendnet adapter....well, things work...pretty much all the time...except the scrollwheel. And, I've gotten quite fond of using it. Whenever it stops working, I have to unplug the adapter and plug it back in. This is inconvenient and even more annoying....
So, I switched back to the Kingwin, until I decide on what I would use. I wondered if there were a more hardware solution...IE: PCI PS/2.
So, I snapped one up on eBay to try out.
So, yesterday...I finally decided to buy the new external firewire drive for 'gumby'. Originally the plan was so that I would have retrospect express backups of the system drive, that I could boot from its restore CD and get that part back....with backuppc protecting my data.
On that criteria...I was trying to decide if 500GB was sufficient or perhaps smaller. Since the system drive is 160GB. And, whether USB 2.0 would be sufficient or if I still needed firewire. Old 'gumby' only had USB 1.1 and Firewire 400 ports. New 'gumby' came with USB 2.0 ports and I had added a Firewire 400 card to it.
Looking at the computer store at the K-State Student Union and various online sites (such as NewEgg, Tigerdirect, eBay)....that there wasn't a whole lot of good options in the under $100 mark.
OTOH, I had suspicions that another one of the 300GB firewire drives connected to 'gumby' was failing. I thought maybe I'd get a bigger drive. Looking again at the selection at the K-State computer store, I found a few reasonable choices....1TB, USB2.0/Firewire 400...and one USB2.0/Firewire400/Firewire800/eSata...all under $150 ($125+) So, then I wondered if I should get the Firewire800 option. I knew it was unlikely that I would stick an eSata controller in 'gumby' But, I wondered if I could swap the Firewire 400 card for a Firewire 800. Turns out there's very little in the way of 32-bit PCI Firewire 800 cards out there. And, they weren't cheap....enough for me to jump on. So, I decided that I would just settle for one of the USB2.0/Firewire 400 external drives. Namely the cheapest one at $125....plus it was kind of a known quantity....I already had an older (physically larger) Iomega Ultramax 1TB USB2.0/Firewire drive connected to my other Windows XP box ('tardis')...doing just backups.
I hooked it up and tried to get it going....at first it would detect and then it caused other issues, crashing my computer. Eventually I got the wizard to show up so I could initialize it and reformat it from Mac format to NTFS. The crashing seemed to cause some strangeness with the rest of the system. At first I was cursing having put off re-establishing some kind of Restrospect Express backup on the new 'gumby' (lost the old when the first of external drives died on the old 'gumby' -- used to have Maxtor OneTouch ?? externals...), but then I remembered that I can get the configs / apps restored using backuppc. (Hmmm, wait...I should be able to fix my firefox settings using FEBE. OK)
Meanwhile...I didn't notice those minor app issues until this morning. But, what I started to do was copy data from both externals over to the new drive. At first I was going to come up with a new organization and a single drive letter...when I decided that I would do two partitions, so that they could go into the same original drive letters. And, the old drives would go somewhere else. That way I wouldn't need to reconfigure the apps that look for the data, and backuppc would continue to see things in the same place, etc.
And, the plan was to use the two old 300G drives as the store for local (Retrospect Express) backups.
I debated whether it would be faster to copy between firewire drives or restoring the data using backuppc (both computers have 1Gbit NICs...old 'gumby' only had 10/100). I ended up doing both...restore one drive/partition from backuppc and copying the other drive/partition locally.
As luck would have it....the drive I was copying locally then decided it was time to die. And, things came to a halt.
Piecing back together... ended up restoring both drives from backuppc onto the new 1TB drive.
Once finished, I changed drive letters again...and rebooted to make things work (Windows was hungup about write issues on the failed drive, so it wouldn't let me change drive letters without some force.)
Later I got Retrospect Express working...currently I reformatted both old 300GB drives and have it doing two sets of backups to the drives. I kind of expect that one of them is going to fail me at some point in the future....but it should buy me time until I get the next external drive for this computer.
Running an initial backup right now, and when done I'll create a new restore image....and I should get to burning it after I do the next set of upgrades on this computer.
Oh yeah, yesterday I also finally changed out the USB to PS/2 adapter on it....the old one was annoying because the mouse would stop working periodically....have to be really still for a while and then the mouse would work again. Annoying! New adapter I got is a Trendnet (same brand as my KVM)....so far it seems to be working better, at least in the mouse department. The keyboard has had some issues....stuck repeating 3's.
On tap for next set of upgrades (likely to take place sometime this long weekend), change out DVD-ROM drive for a DVD burner and upgrade the memory to 4GB (after upgrading 'orac' to 8GB and moving the 2GB from there to here).
This morning, there was a loud beep along with a variety of other strange sounds that woke me. The power had gone out. I could still breath, so my PowerSource400 was doing its job.
I don't yet have the humidifier plugged into the PowerSource400, but I was only using it in passive mode last night. Though I was told in chat that it'll work on an inverter, so it would work on the PowerSource400. The brochure even touts it as a feature of benefit to truck drivers and campers.... Didn't occur to me to find out. Though biggest problem is forgetting to turn it on at night, and/or turning it off in the morning.
Almost as soon as I was fully aware that the power was out and that I was still getting air....there was another beep, and power was back on. I went back to sleep for a little while longer....
Later I saw the clean air filter light was on the air purifier in the room next to my bedroom, so wondered if the air cell would fit in my ultrasonic cleaner. So, first I cleaned my cushions using it....and then found the air cell was too big. But, also time to replace white filter....or rather swap a white filter in for the grey filter....gonna say it picked up a long more funk because I traveled last weekend....
Also in between cushion cleaning and air purifier cleaning...I decided that it was time to try my hand at modifying my ComfortLite II mask. Guess we'll find out how that works tonight.
Finally, I was looking at my data...and decided I should see if I can get EncoreViewer & USB reader working on my new laptop...where its running Ubuntu...with Windows XP in a VirtualBox VM.
Had lots of fun trying to get USB working, but basically it was combine various information found online on the subject...until I got it to work. There was a bit of VirtualBox/USB and Intrepid. udev file didn't quite match, since there was already a vbox one that did the same thing that it described. Another forum post had a different method, but talked of creating a separate group...make the device nodes in that group...and adding vbox & user to the group....while the 'VirtualBox/USB' method said add user to vboxusers group.
What I went back and did was have it make the /proc/bus/usb device nodes for the vboxusers group...and then finally the devices showed up (after a reboot).
The XP VM detected the USB devices, installed drivers and the light turned green....EncoreViewer started reading the smartcard, but then it failed. I fiddled some more...eventually rebooted the XP VM, it did a bunch of stuff (some 33 updates?)...and trying again, I was able to successfully read the smartcard.
Then it was a matter of copying some files from my desktop to the VM, so I could have the historical data. Laptop way will just be so I know it would work rather than use it regularly....of course, that might change if I make it the bedroom computer after the rearrangement. Though I'm thinking a whole new computer would go there....perhaps one of those ASUS atom based all in ones.
What kind of trouble can I get myself into next.
Latest Poopli Updaters -- http://lkc.me/poop
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