Faulbaer's Schlafmulde :: english :: technology
12 articles
http://jm.tosses.info

oh no! not monowall! it's dead, jm.

just last week I learned Manuel Kasper decided to put m0n0wall down after 12 years of excellence. I've been using the monorail for almost as long when I first got a soekris embedded pc for it and I think it is still the best choice for those tiny machines.

now I need something new.

any hints on what webgui firewall to put onto my soekris net4801. I was considering just OpenWRT with some firewall builder but I'd prefer something more klicki-bunti if possible.

unless any good hints come up I'll probably just go down to the bare metal like in the old days. owning several rack-mounted wrap pcs and soekris net4801 machines I don't want to get any new hardware, to be honest.

Faulbaer (too bad - I loved the m0n0wall)

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[ 2015.03.13, 23:56 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

update on the new mac mini

like I expected the mac mini is fast. took it about a month to be shipped - apparently due to a shortage in fusion drives reportedly put into iMacs on priority but since I set it up on my desk last Saturday it has been quick like Han Solo.

the only thing missing at the moment is Thunderbolt as I lost the port to my secondary display. any solution to use both, two displays as well as the Thunderbolt port, would be helpful.

the specs are pretty much bottom right - everything maxed out - I didn't even stop at apple care. this machine shall help me with my personal projects for the next two to three years. what amazes me most is how this tiny thing is running circles around its older brother, my Mac pro eight core 2.8 XEON system. about the same amount of ram, about the same processor but much newer and only four cores - a smaller graphics chip … still the machine is faster and feels much more responsive.

… and it is quiet.

Faulbaer (happy happy joy joy)

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[ 2013.01.23, 12:50 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

synology accepted

went for the Synology disk station ds413j the other day. a little NAS now stuffed with four Western Digital Red drives. It didn't play well with my DLink green switch at first but since I replaced the switch it goes and goes and goes. it stores data as fast as I can shovel it from my drives.

I accept the Synology as apology for the shit Drobo I'm still suffering from. Since the Drobo has now become obsolete I used one of its less well known features and reduced its total capacity drive by drive - its now a three terabyte raid and I'm considering to use it as backup storage behind one of my time-capsules. don't know if that can work but will sure find out.

all that is part of the preparations for the maxed out Mac Mini I've been waiting for for the past two weeks now.

Faulbaer (life without a bulky mac pro - exciting!)

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[ 2012.12.19, 20:33 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

considered an imac but went for the mini

my mac pro is getting old. the gforce graphics accelerator died and I had to go back to the ati radeon the machine had beem shipped with originally. even four gigs of ram decided to just disappear but maybe I can get them back - who knows. anyway - this machine has almost five years on its back and with its many fans and the eight xeon cores it consumes an unreasonable amount of energy compared to modern cpus. in short - a new computer had to be bought.

I waited for the new imac to come out before I finally came to my conclusion. I went for the mac mini. yes, the imac does have more horse-power and a much nicer display. but I already own trackpad and keyboard, plenty of storage, acessories, usb hubs, two 24" displays and whatnot … and the mac mini is much faster than my mac pro - plus it packs more ram. together with the fusion drive and probably a lacie raid it will be on the same level if not slightly above the mac pro and it will consume less power performing the same tasks faster.

what else is wrong about the imac? I'm still not comfortable with the idea of replacing the computer together with any of its failed components. I like the idea to keep things separate. what makes a macbook or an ipad strong just doesn't feel right with a desktop. I considered a powerful macbook as well but there is no real docking option for the macbook and I'm not comfortable running the notebook with the lid closed because of heat building up under the display.

it's going to be a mac mini - I already ordered it. didn't go for the server because there is no fusion drive for it and the drive option is a bit slow. with any luck it should arrive next week and if it's any good I'm gonna post about it here.

Faulbaer (if it's any bad I will post about it, too)

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[ 2012.12.05, 23:22 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

philips hue: want!

about two months from now I'm going to buy the most expensive light bulbs I ever owned - except from projector bulbs and photography flashes maybe. it's overdue and I really do want philips hue!

Faulbaer (want want want want want …)

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[ 2012.11.09, 07:50 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

if in doubt ... use xen

it's done, I've decided and it's become a xen system on lenny. to sum it up real quick: ubuntu server: pain in the arse. kvm very much unfinished busines. vmbuilder hyped crap. virsh pretty much is like masochism.

if I hadn't spent all my energy on trying to get virsh and kvm running on ubuntu first and later on debian lenny - well - I might have given centos a try. but after two-and-a-half day I was just too exhausted for further experimenting and just worked with what I knew would work: debian lenny, xen and lvm. xm-create-image works like a charm and does what it promises. not half of it or only two thirds right and the rest is a mess - it just does what it can and that it does very well.

in fact I already started migrating services to the new box. the weblog is already there. I couldn't be happier. the really big thing is going to be the zimbra migration but I've done that before and it worked every time. so no bad expectations here.

I've decided to drop ejabberd since I'm the only user it's kind of an overkill. also I guess zimbra's jabber services should have improved by now - so I'm gonna try that.

I haven't yet decided if I'm going to upgrade the old server or use the old machine as backup system. will figure that out sooner or later - got enough time for thinking, now that the new system is running well and migration seems to be going on pretty easy, too.

firt blogpost on the new machine - hope it works - fingers crossed ;)

Faulbaer (permissions set properly? we'll see ...)

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[ 2010.08.19, 02:21 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

ipad, iphone and the pre

I'm really looking forward to the ipad. not only that but actually signing up to become an iphone/ipad developer again - although it didn't get me too far last time I believe this time it's going to be different. there are things missing from the ipad - things I need ^_^

the only downside there is to longing for the ipad right now would be to be european as there neither is an official release-date for even the entry-level ipad nor is there a price. also there is no official word about the 3g version not to be sim- or netlocked - so let's hope for the best.

for some days or so I considered to buy the basic ipad although I'd rather be completely mobile and independent from tethering - not that my uk-based jailbroken blacksnowed iphone would tether properly anyway - for that I can only use my palm pre. no - it's going to be the 3g version. I have a 'spare' o2 data-flatrate sim that I got with my little asus eee pc netbook that the ipad is going to replace.

a propos palm pre - apparently they're broke - again. this is a major disappointment but not so much of a surprise to be honest. it's not that the pre didn't have potential or that the marketing was all wrong. even (at least in germany) they picked the perfect partner for the pre. but there were some major issues that added up had to lead into disaster:

- the device had been oversold, the pre never really came close to the iphone in terms of hardware or software and it couldn't really do what had been advertised

- promises were broken when the pre didn't connect to itunes - it's not as if there wasn't a way to get information out of itunes, the palm people just didn't get it done. why the hell didn't they supply their mac-users with a proper sync-app for the pre?

- communication issues and jobs only partially done - they shipped far too early but didn't really fix the device afterwards. I still can't properly backup my pre to my mac or to the network or to anywhere. the touch-stone charger is a great idea but without wireless synchronization it becomes an annoyance. even bluetooth protocals only have been implemented half-way. I still can't browse my pre's filesystem via bluetooth - why not?

- quality has been a big issue with the device as my battery is almost always dead after less than a day and the device has been replaced two times after dying on me - within the first month as I recall. also the device doesn't feel properly built, the keyboard-layout could be much better and the responsiveness as well as the precision of the touch-screen are less than mediocre

- the software did introduce some good ideas but since most of those great features hadn't been implemented properly the device couldn't be a success. both - iphone os as well as android have caught on with web-os. there isn't much left only the palm can do - and whatever challenges the competitors solved they did a better job at it than palm did.

actually I think the whole approach might have been flawed. it's easy to conclude that afterwards, I know that, but I think what palm should have done to compete against the iphone as well as against android would have been a much more open policy. they should have aimed applications at communication like sip-telephony, skype, jabber and maybe even some clients for the major blog-platforms. also they should have marketed tethering earlier and the quality should have been on par with at least their past products like the palm Vx or the palm tungsten or even better the ones of their competitors, the iphone or the ipod touch.

they should have opened their store right from the beginning and there shouldn't have been delays in shipping os-updates to outside the united states. why palm closed down their us-store to european customers is also an unsolved riddle to me. making developers pay for submitting applications to the store still doesn't seem right to me.

I'm very interested into who is going to buy the pre and what the next owner is going to do with web-os, the pre and how they are going to try to compete with apple and google. traditionally palm is a closed platform like apple has been. their attempts of licensing the palm platform didn't work out too well. palm might have missed their window of opportunity to become a strong competitor to apple on their locked-in turf but they still might have a shot at the open market where google is king of the hill right now - in the open market it's ok to just be good enough for a lower price as linux and windows have shown us over and over again - there nobody needs to be perfect.

Faulbaer (cheap but acceptable is the new perfect)

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[ 2010.04.12, 09:29 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]

data rescue saved the day

when I came back from london last month I noticed my mac behaving a little different from how I remembered it to. it wouldn't open disk images, it seemed to have stopped serving torrents although the internet connection was working and it wouldn't open files or applications. soon enough just about two hours later it just died on me. after a not so quick reboot I noticed the drobo wasn't coming up. I tried to check it with the disk utility but it wouldn't mount and the disk utility blabbered something about a directory being something with something blah foobar. I had been pondering to buy disk warrior on several occasions so I just went ahead and got me a copy. for $99 it turned out to be able to make the drobo accessible again but it wouldn't repair it because of some rather undefined problems that also made the scanning take ages - well today I think disk warrior is priced far to high for what it does.

next I had to buy some large usb-drives to recover as much data as I could. it took me over a week to suck all the data from the drobo and after some more crashes, reboots and several severe nightmares later my recovery work was done and I had all my encrypted sparsebundles back - just one wouldn't mount. the one that wouldn't mount had a virtual size of 4 tb and a real size of 550 gb and as it turned out it wouldn't mount because just about ten band-files worth 256 mb were missing from the band directory in the sparsebundle package.

this has happened before and would happen again - but not to me it hadn't.

after some googling around and reading this and that knowledge base discussion I was ready to give up. apples mount process just wouldn't accept a broken sparsebundle with missing band-files - it didn't matter if those were even used or necessary - it just wouldn't mount it - basta.

then I googled a little more, finding the article "repairing corrupt / damaged sparsebundle" pointing to this article "repair / rebuild damaged .sparsebundle" which finally gave me the solution: data rescue 2 which had been updated to version 3 by the time and which proved to be the helpful companion I needed to get my files back. it crashed, too but after just two more days it had recovered all the files I needed from the broken sparsebundle into a new one. the final clue suggested to mount the broken sparsebundle using the -shadow-option of the hdiutil. this then presented a readable and writable block-device for prosoft's data rescue (link removed on prosoft's request) to work with in expert mode.

although the 3d interface of the tool is a little childish and very much unnecessary the tool works great and is great value for the $99 I had to pay for it. it can't do wonders but for what it's worth it recovered all the data I needed and that's worth a lot to me.

a few final words about the sparsebundle file format: it sucks! apple should have the responsable team whipped until they get their heads out their asses and fix it.

- it's so fault intolerant it feels like it's from the eighties - all the journaling in the world can't help a sparsebundle if it's lacking band-files or if band-files and plist-file mismatch - dudes, get it fixed!

- there is no hashed directory-structure for the bands there are just millions of band-files sitting flat in the band directory waiting for accidents to happen

- there is virtually no usable documentation anywhere to be found on this sparsebundle packaging format - how open is that?

Faulbaer (and why does mac os x go insane beyond ten or more attached sparsebundles?)

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[ 2013.12.18, 00:45 :: thema: /english/technology :: link zum artikel :: 0 Comments ]
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12 articles