Category Archives: Geek


Alright. Here’s the deal.

I’ve got 3 days off, to myself. I’ve got a list of shit I want to get done. I’ve got my TV, my laptop, papasan chair, and the Matrix box set that desperately needs re-watching.

I think we all know what needs to happen.

Today was much like the motherfucking Titanic

The day started off pretty well. Much pomp and circumstance when the first appointment of the day went well. I was Shrub, standing on the deck of an aircraft carrier with a Mission Accomplished sign hanging behind me. I hopped into the Davemobile and headed off to appointment number two all smiles, singing to “These Eyes” courtesy of k-rock.

Night falls upon the glorius vessel that I named November 8th and I coast through dark waters, running about 3 different upgrades at once. Parralelism is great to save time, but it sucks when something fails and leaves you in the lurch.

And we get scuttled by a motherfucking iceberg. There’s ice on the deck and we’re taking on water. A large chunk of data just dissapeared into the ether, and now my confidence is shot for the day. I need to get this back, I need to make this better. There is a gaping hole in the side of my boat and I need to make it better.


We snag the machine and set up an interim solution. A small chunk of my boat snaps off but the piece I’m on levels out. We run the fuck away and try and get on with the day. Nothing we can do till we get to the dry dock. Third appointment is short and sweet, surgical even. And then onwards to the 4th. While sweating bullets here, we realise the boat is lifting again. The boss called. Another machine. Another client. Smells like hard drive failure. My little piece of boat is almost completely vertical. I’m standing on top of if trying to figure out when to jump, and from what side. I need to get off early enough to not be sucked down, but not so early I die on impact. I need an exit strategy, I need to jump off the right side of the ship so I don’t hit the propeller on the way down.

I update the print drivers on this workstation so I can setup remote printing from the Terminal Server. Run a test page, it all looks good. I install the same set on the server. Run a test page. The print spooler on the workstation shits a brick. I’ve hit the propller.

But I’ve only clipped my ankle. My fall is completely uncontrolled and I’m flipping around.  Ripping keys out of the registry left and right, getting this god forsaken driver out so I can rescue the print spooler.  I grab the bottom of my coat and spread it like a flying squirrel suit. I managed to right myself and splash down feet first into the ocean.  With a bit of a hack reminiscent of the flying squirrel suit, I manage to get it to print remotely. I start swimming away from the day… er … boat. I have no lifeboats.  I have two machines to recover data from.

I can’t see the shore.

Looks like I’m swimming all night.

Sweet Jesus

After a few weeks of living without a 3d accelerated X server, I’ve finally got it resolved.

# m-a a-i nvidia-kernel
# depmod -ae
# apt-get install nvidia-glx

Then edit /etc/X11/xorg.conf to use the nvidia driver inplace of nv.

I’ve also upgraded Carla’s machine to the new Ubuntu last night/this morning. At this rate, I might even fix my keymap too!

Edit: I should add that I’d pegged my kernel to 2.6.16 because I hadn’t found the newer releases of ivtv for my Tuner card, and as I was using a debian binary kernel, but had upgraded everything else, including gcc, it complained everytime I tried to fix it.  Apparently the solution was open my eyes, breath a little, relax, and let it do it’s thing properley.  The above really isn’t that magical.

Weekend Fun

So the datacenter is preparing to move from the 9th floor of the building to the basement, where they’ll have more space, better power infrastructure, better AC, etc etc etc. Part of the prep for that happened Friday evening.  They shut down between 2 and 5 to do god knows what. What I do know:

  1. Tank refused to boot due to a cooked CPU Fan
  2. Dozer came online without too much of an issue, but the suspended VMs didn’t.
  3. Apoc refused to boot the Xen-ified kernel.  This took the most amount of time to fix, and it ended up being due to a kernel update that came down with the same package name as what I’d installed before.  It is known to be broken, and apparently they’re not planning on fixing it.
  4. They moved two of the AC units to the basement where they will sit unused for the next month, while everything slow-cooks itself to death in the existing facility.

I guess for the full move in December I may need to plan some maintenance for my rigs. I just need to keep telling myself this is fun. It’s a fun hobby. It’s a fun hobby.

In other news the directions are right

About two weeks ago I re-installed my work lappy as the copy of XP on there wouldn’t activate, despite building it with an OEM disc and using the key on the bottom. C’est la vie.

However, I was having problems syncing my Treo. It kept failing on CarrierProfiles. This morning, I remembered something about the first sync needing to be done with the cable and not over bluetooth. I threw the cable in my bag this morning, and sure enough, it synced up no problem over the cable. It still fails over bluetooth for a few things so I think it may take a bit to get it all playing the way it was before the re-install.
It seems like this issue revolves around moving large files over bluetooth. Such a convenient technology, but it still feels a little green.

I do love my headset though, nothing has the power to make me look like a big, big big dork as quick as my headset.


It’s been a while since I’ve written anything of any substance so I thought it might be prudent for me to post a bit of a recap of the last little while.

I took my brother and his gf to get Lego Star Wars 2 at EB games Wednesday night. They did the right thing and bought a legit copy. I picked up a cheap copy of the incredibles game (though the original, not the second one which was a two player that I thought I was getting and carla wanted to play…) A few minutes after we get home pete comes down saying he can’t get it installed.

After a few minutes of yelling at it, I start googling for the error and we realise that a large number of people are having issues with this release. It’s a know problem that Lucas Arts hasn’t released a patch for. Luckily, there is a fix for this, and we can thank the pirates for it. They fixed this a little while ago, and basically we copied all the files off the cd, replaced one of the files, burned that off and installed from our new master. Works like a charm.

Go Lucas Arts, you cocknobs.

Went to Edson yesterday for a pitiful amount of work. Though I did get to listen to a number of great interviews from IT Conversations. There were to guys I listened to that had incredible passion for what they were talking about (Asterisk and Identity on the Web), and while listening to them I was thinking to myself, I remember when I used to sound like that. Fast forward a number of hours and I’m on campus waiting for Carla to finish up so I head up to RATT and meet up with some LSD folks. Lo and behold, I find myself preaching for damn near an hour on the history of the open source movement. That made me rather happy as it’s been a long time since I’ve gotten to rattle of the tale of serendipity that is the coming together of the GNU project and the Linux kernel.

When I get a change to sit down again, I think it might be time to impart on the world my thoughts on the shooting in Montreal.  I’m going to warn you all now, there’s going to be a lot of seething anger, and I’m going to bring up a lot of shit about Columbine that most people have forgotten.  And I’m going to become part of what I hate. I’m going to take what should be a time for mourning and turn it into “current event focused prosumer generated content in the blogosphere”.  I think I’m going to go puke.