Older blog entries for davidz (starting at number 7)

Hello blog, long time no post.


Just released HAL 0.2.90, which was about time. There's been good progress since 0.2.6 with a lot of excellent patches from both Joe and Robert. Nowadays, we even got our own mailing list, and there's also a Project Utopia list! Yay!


I was in India on business about 4-5 weeks ago to visit a branch office in Bangalore. It was my second time going, was there 1.5 years ago, and I still find India filled with contrast and other odd things. I had about two days of spare time, so I went to Mysore, situated about 200 km south of Bangalore, to see temples and stuff. For a short while I actually felt like the dot in freedesktop.org :-) Oh well, it was a great trip. I'd wish that it had been longer than a week so I would have more time to explore.

Managed to get some hacking done last night - just submitted an update to a two month old patch to D-BUS for a DBUS_VA_COPY macro based on stuff in GLib since that is how Havoc wants it.

Seems that I'll be getting DSL on March 15th which I'm looking forward to - it's painful not having access to the Internet especially when hacking on a project like HAL since it depends on stuff like linux-hotplug and udev. Anyway, I've started coming into work really early so I have a few hours with Internet access.

Sorted out my pictures from FOSDEM, here is a great one of Hallski, rhult, andersca and mallum. On my camera I've also found, it seems, some motion pictures of rml in a bar near the Grand Place, but these are not quite ready for distribution (cough; extortion; cough) ;-)

Quite a bit since my last post... The past three or four weeks I've been busy at work with travelling and other stuff; I've moved to a new apartment (No DSL for at least two more weeks; having to use my cell phone for Internet access) and someone very close to me passed away :-(

So, basically, I've had no time for any useful hacking. The good thing is that this is going to change soon (at least modulo internet access). I've got a bunch of patches for HAL that needs to be applied soon. And a few outstanding changes by myself that I need to commit to CVS. Hopefully I can start hacking again as early as tomorrow!

Today I've just got home from FOSDEM where I met a lot of great hackers and consumed some beer. That was very nice.

Btw, I've had some problems with email (since my server is currently on my mum's DSL line) so if you've sent me mail that I havent replied to, please try this address instead (though my normal address should work by now). Did I mention that it's painful having to use 9600 bps dialup instead of always-on DSL? ;-)


In the process of upgrading to libsysfs version 0.4.0 as HAL includes a local copy. This will allow me to remove the sleep(1) just before transforming the hotplug event into a D-BUS message. Lots of other changes as well that I need to test before committing it to CVS.


Booked my tickets and hotel for FOSDEM - meeting up with andersca and rhult in Copenhagen Airport. Looking very much forward to going and meeting many of the persons I've only sofar met online through mailing lists and IRC. Rock.


Been busy, mostly with delivery projects for real paying clients - not really what I was supposed to be doing, but then again, it's always good to get the hands dirty with more practical things. But it wasn't the plan, really. Lots of changes are going on, some organisational. Strange times as such situations normally imply; it'll be interesting to see how this one plays out..


Yay! Got word last week that I've got the new apartment out in Lyngby, about 10km north of Copenhagen. It's a bit further out than where I've spent the last 5 years, but it's a nice area with both urban and green areas. Anyway, it's a 120-something square meters nice apartment on the 13th floor even with a view across The Sound to our old foes, the Swedes. Compared to my current residence it's much much better, I'm very excited about it. Just need to order broadband ASAP or colocate my server somewhere during the transition (yeah, I run my own mail server).


I've fixed a few bugs in the otherwise nice V4L patch from Matthew Mastracci, see here for a nice screenshot. Also got a patch from hadess for detecting read/write speed of optical drives - very neat. And I got around to integrating the firewire patch from Joe even though he says it's a bit cheesy still.

In other news I'm now using my fastest system (dual Athlon 1800, 512MB) as my main development box instead of my old Dell Inspiron 7500 (650 PIII, 128MB). Up until now, the fast box have just been collecting dust, more or less, the past 18 months, so about time. It's really a breeze, just sad it's not as portable :-)

elanthis : yeah, you need udev-012 (udev-013 isn't backwards compatible) and this file in /etc/dbus-1/system.d and then restart the bus. The string with an error in it, stems from the system bus instance, so it must be a bug in d-bus.

16 Jan 2004 (updated 16 Jan 2004 at 18:46 UTC) »
Thrown of the bus

Spent about six or seven hours finding out why the HAL daemon would suddenly exit with exit code 1. After building a new D-BUS RPM that respects the DBUS_VERBOSE environment variable, I found out that I was constructing garbage messages and the system bus daemon kicked me off which resulted in exit() being called somewhere in libdbus in my client (the HAL daemon). Hmm...

Hotplugging media

Yay, now HAL does the right thing when a user removes media without unmounting it - the code is quite ugly, polling and stuff, but it seems to work quite well at least for the limited set of devices (Compact Flash, CD and DVD discs) that I can test with.

Applications can now catch a D-BUS event saying that HAL unmounted, lazy-style even, the filesystems on the unplugged media.

elanthis : The HAL RPM that rml built was based on a 0.2.4 tarball from me. You should try the latest 0.2.5 here.


I'm currently at the curling rink between games in Danish Open - 802.11b is indeed pervasive. Had some coworkers from Jerusalem visiting this week; went out for beer wednesday; nice.

13 Jan 2004 (updated 13 Jan 2004 at 23:57 UTC) »

Yesterday I got myself a new card reader that supports removable storage (my old one simply powered down when removing the CF card), so now HAL supports media detection for both SCSI and IDE devices. Currently it's through polling (like magicdev), because of how Linux 2.6 currently works.

Today, rml put gnome-volume-manager into GNOME CVS, which I think is a pretty big deal for the HAL project - one implication is that I actually have to begin to care about API/ABI stability. Things are definitely coming into shape for hardware management on GNOME.

Been in meetings most of today at work; good to be home punching the keyboard. Started blogging through gnome-blog; neat.

Created an account for myself so I can post random notes about HAL and other stuff; neat, now I only need to find out how to mirror this to my existing weblog. Hmm..

Work on HAL is progressing nicely; work on adding I2C devices is progressing; just need to get my other system up to integrate the patch. Have exchanged a bunch of mails with rml about HAL and the soon-to-be-released gnome-volume-manager. Hope to finalize volume detection soon, at least for optical discs.. There was also an interesting thread on linux-hotplug-devel regarding media detection.

Still got two ISO's of FreeBSD 5.2-RC2 in my homedir waiting to be burned and installed.

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