Busy as ever…

So its been awhile (again). Thought I’d post a new update. WHS2011 is still going quite strong with DriverBender instead of hardware raid. No problems to report, well other than Microsoft deciding that with the release of Windows Server 2012 that Windows Home Server will no longer exist. Ahh well, long as I keep getting updates and patches for the time being. I may go back and give Amahi a try again sometime in the future, but for now, I’m good to go.

Put Sabayon on the E6410. I have to say I am quite impressed that a Gentoo based distribution can run this smoothly and fast as a desktop environment on the E6410. Only problem being the fingerprint reader, which is a Linux compatibility issue with the Broadcom 5880. I will keep working on it, but thus far I can’t even get Ubuntu to use the reader. Next issue, which I haven’t tackled just yet, is Evolution with Exchange support. Finally had it working on Ubuntu but it took a little bit. Will need to work on this as well, but for now I’m just running the desktop as though it were my primary OS to get a better feel.

On a side node, Verizon Wirelss, fix your time servers. I can no longer use my Google Authenticator because my clock is 4 minutes slow. Please… please to be fixing this ASAP.

Lastly, headsets. The Plantronics Savi 700 is a FANTASTIC desktop headset. Connects up to no only the desk phone, but also to the PC via a USB cable and even cell phones via Bluetooth. It is very lightweight and easy to use, VERY IMPRESSED. Way to go Plantronics. Finally, Jawbone Era… Just got it in the mail yesterday, thank you Yugster, and its tiny and light… like super tiny and light. It came fully charged so immediately synced the iPhone and Fascinate to it, but still have really been able to use it. I have heard NOTHING but good things from the device, but I figure at 63% off market price, I can’t go wrong either way. And its not like I’m going to be using it constantly anyways, just when I’m away from the house and not in my car and maybe around the house cause I don’t want to hold the phone to my ear.

Ok, quick update done, think that’s good for now. Hopefully I won’t let so much time pass before providing another update.

Real Update

So, since the mobile test post was a success I figured I’d do a real update, only problem will be what to post and where to start.

New job is still going well. Still have a but to learn about processes and the like, which is ,such easier said than done seeing as every account is different in its setup and support. My first on-call week is pending in 2 weeks, not exactly looking forward to that. Just as I am not exactly looking forward to jumping into my first solo account from start, that’s probably due to only semi-shadowing a co-worker on one account, so I still don’t feel like I really know what I’m doing, but we’all see how it goes. Had a team meeting this past Friday in Baltimore. Hanging out, food and an Orioles game. Was a really good day, showered a little bit during the game, but nothing a serious and no delay during due to rain. The game did get started about an hour late due to a building thunder/lightning storm that never really came through, no biggie though.

To update back a bit, my WHS2011 box in its original configuration pretty much died a horrible death. Luckily no data was lost this time around due to the ridiculous RAID configuration I had going. It has since been resurrected in a new box and with an entirely different setup. Instead of going the nutso hardware RAID I opted for a more sane software based configuration by way of a piece of software called Drive Bender. Great software designed for Windows 7, Server 2008 and/or WHS2011. Very easy to use and it updates nicely when there are updates. I am very impressed by the software and hope it lives up to its promises, in the event of a drive failure, not that I want a drive to fail or anything.

Done a little bit of showey work to the car recently. I got the rims powder coated a mat black and I painted the calipers a bright red. Looks fantastic, got one sexy ass beast of a car now if I do say so myself. Only thing left to do is to sand and paint the center caps for the wheels.

Mobile Test Post

This is a test from WordPress for Android from my HP TouchPad which is currently running CyanogenMod 9 Nightly Build 20120621. So fat so good, let’s just hope it allows me to categorize and that the post comes out looking good.

Been a while… again

Thought I would make a new post seeing as its been quite a few months since my last. I am currently in the process of migrating everything off of the old Insensible.net server to this new Insensible.net server. The old one, running Gentoo, is starting to show its fragmentation and I am getting tired of having to fix the default route every single time it reboots. Still no clue why that is happening. Oh, and even though Hyper-V shows that I only have 1 NIC installed and active, the box still acts as though there are 2 present. Again, NO CLUE. So at this point I’ve thrown my hands in the air and I am not progressing over to this Ubuntu server. Hopefully the Debian core can keep the server operating well and strong for a long while to come. I’ve almost completed all the migration work, still have a couple of things left to complete and then the Gentoo box that has been around for the last 4 years will be history.

Recently took a new job. Actually, this Monday will be the start of week 2. So far, so good. Last Monday and Tuesday I was in Leesburg to actually meet my new boss as well as get a brief orientation into the company and what I will be doing. I was also returned home with a server as well as 2 security devices, pretty cool for my first day/day and a half. I don’t think this working from home has really kicked in yet, only time will tell. The job and company are pretty neat and small. So far I’m only getting my hands dirty into a server project to determine if some VMs that are currently running some applications for a single client are worth keeping around in their current form or if we should look into making some changes. Upon first logging into all 3 VMs, the first 2 were spitting out I/O Errors left and right and the last one was functioning fine. After a reboot, all 3 VMs are now functioning fine it appears. I was able to do some preliminary work and it appears that one of the servers that is running Rancid for config management isn’t going to hack it after the clients hardware was upgraded and the new devices are not supported by the application. This coming week I will be doing some more digging into that though, never know, might find a way to make it work. I now have the time and resources to dedicate towards the Icinga project, seeing as I am now working for the company of the friend I was trying to help out with. We have already made some new progress and things are starting to look up better for that project already, YAY!

Lets see, what else. Oh, basement working is interesting. Not really seeing daylight never bothered me much and thus far its remaining true. We just got the last, hopefully, of stuff to complete the new “office” area and are getting some electrical run next week. This will hopefully result in a successful transplant of the new desk to the new office location without much trouble, we shall see though. Umm, I think that’s about it for now, I will try to make more posts as time allows, so please don’t hold your breath.

And it starts…

As with all my other website ventures, I have already been giving it less and less time to both work on and post on. Its probably inevitable that this site will end up stale and I’ll once again clear everything and leave the blank white page everyone is so accustomed to, if you even visit the site somewhat regularly.

Actually, I really don’t have anything to really put down. Had a hiccup on the WHS2011 box where one of the 2TBs kicked out but it was able to re-add itself and is fine now. TouchPad is still rockin, waiting eagerly for the Gingerbread Android ports from either TouchDroid or CyanogenMod groups. Both have made great headway and it is running, but not everything is fully functional yet, but its coming so YAY.

Tried to build a Linux kernel 3.0.4 for my web server, didn’t go over too well. The box came back and was functional, however there was quite a bit of lag, even at console. Not sure what that was about but I’ll revisit it, probably when 3.0.5 is out for Gentoo Hardened and I’ll tinker here and there until I figure out what the root cause is. It is said that the jump from 2.6.35 to 3.0.x isn’t anything big, more of just a Linux milestone than any real core changes, which I really don’t like. I’d rather see 2.6 reach 99 than change the major version for a milestone. That’s like what Firefox has been doing lately. 4.0 was released late last year and now we are at 7.0 already, and for no good reason either. Stupid version wars.

OH, I have been offered a bunch of 750GB Barracuda ES drives from work, might take them up on it and snag a few for use in something later. Decent size, decent performance, so I figure why not.

HP TouchPad

So who thought it would be so difficult to track down an HP TouchPad of purchase? Oh, did I mention there’s a Fire Sale on HP TouchPad’s right now? Hahahahaha, yeah, more on that later. So, looks like all of Northern Delaware is out of stock with the exception of BJs who, up until today has yet to drop the price along with all the other major retailers. I spent nearly 3 hours yesterday morning hitting up just about every place that I could, all to find out everyone was sold out. So I kept hunting online, all the while Fallyn is getting annoyed that I’m forever attached to the phone or PC virtually all day long. Beh, long story short, BestBuy finally opened their stock of over 250,000 TouchPads online and in stores for the Fire Sale reduced price and I was just able to order a 32GB version without any trouble. Now, do I got to BJs and try and physically secure a 16GB, or do I hope and pray that the BBY one comes through? Oh, did I mention that HP Small Business site now has them in stock again? That’s another option.

So, the HP fire sale… not sure what is going on with HP right now. I understand they are losing money and everything and have decided to begin distancing themselves from the consumer PC market as well as WebOS, but to have a sale like this on the TouchPad is a little drastic IMHO. Especially on the day that the company announces the 64GB White TouchPad is coming to the states. Umm, WHAT?!? So, this fire sale… 16GB version retails at $399 now with the 32GB version just $100 more at $499. Well, the slashed prices are 16GB for $99 and the 32GB for just $50 more at $149. Wow, talk about savings there. Turns out it costs $306.15 to make the 16GB version and $328.15 to make the 32GB version, cost based on Bill of Materials provided by iSuppli. Talk about a HUGE loss overall, but in the interim their sales are going to soar. 3rd Quarter gains anyone?

I just find it interesting, that through this whole thing, HP has not come forth with why the drastic cut nor have any of their other product lines been slashed with such vigor. Its almost like the TouchPad and WebOS has left a horribly nasty taste in HPs mouth. In any case, there are hundreds of thousands of people that are VERY happy right now, and I certainly can’t blame them. I’m seriously hoping that my BBY order processes and ships. If it doesn’t happen I will be disappointed, but I’ll be alright. I still think and fully feel the iPad2 is a much stronger and solid device, but I can’t pass up this opportunity to get a good tablet very very cheap. If it works out and I get mine, it will be the only tablet that can even remotely compete with the Nook, which I still think is a fantastic device both in terms of performance and cost, especially after being rooted and I haven’t even looked at the overclock ability of the one that we have.

WHS 2011 Update

So, got the Music move issue fixed. Turns out the Subsonic service was not fully stopping, even though it looked like it was. Fix was simple, disable the service entirely and reboot the box. So, converted the Raid10 to Raid5 and the speed drop was very noticeable. Needless to say, the 1TBs are back in Raid10 configuration. Looking at expanding the 2TB array into 4 drives instead of 2, just not sure if I should split them into 2 2TB Raid1′s or do 1 4TB Raid10. I’ll probably play around with that when I get the new 2TB drives and work out which one is better.

In any event, still quite happy with WHS 2011 as a whole. Will need to start looking into actually backing up the PCs and stuff, as I have yet to get into that. Then I’ll need to look at beginning a server backup setup. That said, I should look at the recovery image since everything is up and running well for the time being.

Updates and Things

Thought I would provide an update from the previous post about how the PS3 Media Server. Works fantastically, no chunking or buffering issues, at least not thus far. Quality of the streamed mkv’s is top notch. All in all I’m very impressed with it.

WHS2011 update… Well, its running, fully operational, kinda. So, the System/OS drive is a pair of 500GB SATA drives in Raid1 configuration, for server backup. I have a primary data drive of 2 2TB drives in Raid1. I then have a second data drive consisting of 4 1TB drives in Raid10. I had initially thought about doing Raid5, and I may still go back that route, especially with some of the difficulties I have been having with this array. I was able to move our 38GB of Pictures from the primary data drive to the second data drive. I setup to move/migrate the Music directory, which thanks to Cosmo is now nearing 400GB in size. I started the move, 8 hours later still at 0%. So I cancelled the move, its been “cancelling” now for some 36 hours. *sigh* So I am now in the process of running a chkdsk on that raid group, currently only about ½ through the first Stage of it. All in all, not a happy camper right now. My plan, get this back into 100% operational order and give the Music folder move another go and see where I get from there. Other than that I have been quite happy with WHS2011 as a whole. I think converting the 4 1TB drives to a Raid5 would be a good idea as gaining the extra TB for the client backups would be optimal. We shall see, I will update at that time.

Oh yeah…

Forgot to mention, signed up for Netflix on the PS3 the other night. Not impressed! Their Instant Queue selection is very lacking, mostly older stuff, not much new at all. Had a couple things I’m interested in watching, but yeah, definitely will be cancelling before the end of the trial period, that’s for sure. This all started because some of the newer BluRay movies don’t play well if at all on the PS3. Between Cinavia and malformed mkv’s its become increasingly more difficult to get things that will play. In any event, finally came across PS3 Media Server again, totally forgot about it. Well, runs rather nicely on both the new WHS2011 box and my Hyper-V server and the streams are pretty decent from it AND it streams mkv’s. No need to convert to AHCHD or VOB for the PS3 to read it. We’ll see how long this lasts.

Busy Week

Things have been rather busy this week.

Work has been very busy with nearly 2 dozen builds spread among 4 people. Mind you I only have a week left in the department so I’m trying to finish up all my builds as quickly as possible so I can start my transition. Still trying to pick up the pieces and recover whatever data I can from a sad and failing WHSv1 box. Not looking too promising, but we shall see after this weekend when I can actually pull individual drives and begin ripping data directly. In the process of building and populating a new WHS2011 box with the old data that can be recovered all while tinkering around with the new beast. I have to admit, I wasn’t very fond of it initially, but with a multiple raid configuration that I’m going for, it looks like most of my concerns will have been met. Only time will tell on that and I should be providing a review or something of my experiences with WHS2011 in the not so distant future.

Busyness continued into tonight. Get a call around 6:30pm, “You need to let the dogs out, your wife has had a couple sangria’s”. No big deal, last day at work with her friends, I understand. So, head home with the intention of probably not returning due to the time. Get home and not but 10 minutes later another call, “You need to come pick your wife up, she’s not doing so good”. Oh dear. I wasn’t able to pick her up due to still being on the clock. See, headed home, took my 30 minutes driving, playing with and feeding the dogs, then got back on the clock via VPN. “I still have an hour left”. “Ok, we’ll finish eating and I’ll give you a call”. About 45 minutes later here comes Fallyn with one of her friends, Fallyn heads straight to the bathroom, not good. Turns out they had begun drinking around 2pm or so and she only had a couple of chips, which means that in the past 7 hours she had only had a couple of chips and who knows how much alcohol. So, spend the next hour and a half keeping and eye on her as she falls in and out of sleep on the bathroom floor. Now she’s all snuggled on the couch, not wanting to come to bed cause that would require walking up steps and she still doesn’t feel up to that yet.

Anyways, nearly soft-bricked my phone today. Did a kernel update which apparently isn’t compatible with the version of CM7 that I’m currently on. Either that or it actually needs a Data wipe to work. In any even, update didn’t go as expected but luckily I was able to three-button back and fix it. Although CWM4 isn’t supposed to work right via three-button, so we’ll see if it actually fails or something. Still very curious about this MIUI stuff, but also wary seeing as its a Chinese based ROM ported and translated to nearly every Android device known and in every language available. Also a little wary because of the iPhone’esque interface. *shrug* Might give it a whirl once the CM Devs make some headway on a few of the issues I have with the ROM on the Fascinate. I mean I’ll have to data wipe at that point anyways, might as well give it a shot, right.

Think I’ve finally got my BIND Nameserver/IP update script finished, at least as finished as I can make it without access to the GoDaddy API for updating Nameservers. Really blows when you got everything done and working except for one little piece all because a company doesn’t feel its necessary to open their API up for people to script against. Blah. Least the difficult part is finished. I have it set to update 3 different nameservers and restart them all sequentially so they all receive updates from their appropriate master. So YAY, go me, blah… what’s next?

Well, next week is last week in Provisioning and then I transition to Mass Storage, er I mean Cloud Services. Should be good, new stuff to learn. Lets see where it takes me. Same time I’m starting the new position I’ll be starting Fall semester classes. Oh buddy, let me tell you how excited I am. CIS130 – Computer Organization, which appears to be an assembly language class and CIS210 Data Communications, which I’m still not to sure about. Both classes are needed for either degree I’m considering, CIS or CNE. I’m still on the fence about CNE due to the electronics and ac/dc nature of some of the “networking” classes, but who knows. All I know is I’ll be getting some programming experience either way, which is really what I need seeing as I’m OK at it, I just really have issues getting things started. So yeah, busy remainder of the month ahead.

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