Older blog entries for jbowman (starting at number 33)

10 Jan 2001 (updated 10 Jan 2001 at 20:42 UTC) »

Trying out ithought, as it sounded/looks/is pretty interesting. Noticed that ithought doesn't have any rpms. I may have to fix that later this evening... :)

Updated my account info a bit. Tweaked a few minor things, nothing major. Built some rpms for amcl and shipped them out yet. Haven't heard back from them yet, but this was over my holiday vacation so I suppose it's not unexpected not to hear back from them just yet. Actually, I suppose it should be called gnome-mud now, but they haven't made the namechange official yet.

I've been playing around with the ext3fs journaling filesystem for a little bit now. Nice stuff. Can't wait for it to hit 1.0.0 so we can play around with it "safely" in our production environment here at work. Considering that our news server is taking hours to fsck, it would be a big benefit... :)

Mozilla 0.7 is pretty nice. Including PSM is good (hopefully it's less buggy now). They finally fixed the annoying "Wow, I'm a horizontal bard, reload me over and over!" bug (like the horizontal bar at the bottom of slashdot's index page. Overall it seems more stable (so far) and hasn't run into any pages that will hang it yet (a good thing, it used to do this somewhat often). Overall, it's about as good stability-wise as Netscape 4.7 is, and it seems to render pages more quickly. NNTP handling is _much_ better in this release (one of their release notes mentioned this :) as well. Mozilla's starting to shape up, though Javascript continues to need a painfully large amount of work.

[ "Could I have been... a magnet for money?" ]

4 Jan 2001 (updated 10 Jan 2001 at 22:03 UTC) »

From "[jbowman@yertle jbowman]$ rpm -qp --changelog ssh-2.4.0-1.i386.rpm"

* Mon Dec 04 2000 Anne Carasik <anne@ssh.com>

- Added the following, thanks to Joe Bowman <jbowman@kiva.net> :)
- Patched to solve a large number of specfile problems
- Added the ability to install alongside ssh1 rpms for ssh1 compatibility mode
- Changed package name to ssh2 to allow for installation alongside ssh1
- Removed explicit SUSE support.

Whoohoo!
It warms my heart to know that, while they went silent on me, the SSH folks at least didn't totally ignore me. :)
Now, it's just a matter of waiting for the source RPM for ssh-2.4.0 to be released so I can go and make sure my contributions are working correctly. And (so far) the SSH folks are keeping the license terms the same for 2.4.0, which means it continues to be usable (and includable) by distributions. I've been using openssh now for a little while, though, and I must admit it's hard to find much of a difference between the two in terms of functionality. Definitely something to spend some more time researching.

Hm. It's been a while since my last post. Vacation was a wonderful week and a half of complete and utter slack. Definitely needed, as I was starting to get a little burnt around the edges. Now I'm refreshed and ready to take on the world! Well, okay, maybe not the world. Maybe a nice pizza or two instead... Mmm...

The new computer toys are behaving nicely. After last month's spending spree on computer equipment, I believe I wound up with more than half of my workstation at home being replaced with shiny brand-new parts.

Had an amusing battle with Windows while I was installing my new toys. Apparently, Windows cannot recognize an IDE Orb drive when it's connected to the on-board HPT370 controller of the Abit KT7-RAID motherboard. What makes this wonderfully ironic is that the Linux drivers (which don't support the RAID functionality) *can* recognize and use (perfectly) the Orb drive when it's on that controller. How ironic.

Other than that, it's back to work building client machines and making sure things don't turn into some sort of apocalyptic nightmare in the machine room. *BZZZT!* *FWOOMP!* Oops, too late...

[ "One for the money, two for the show..." ]

Mmm. Computers toys. The perfect gift for any occasion.
Got the stuff I'd been waiting on last week a day late, but otherwise unharmed. Hurrah! Also ordered some new RAM as well, which should be here today. To top it all off, I managed to get most of my Christmas shopping done this week. Just have to figure out what to get mother-dearest and I'm all set.

Ah. Vacation. Sweet, sweet, vacation. Next week is my last work week of the year, and I'm greatly looking forward to spending a week turning myself into a vegetable. I'm debating about whether I should turn my keys in for the duration with an order to not let me near the office. In the meantime, I scramble to keep up with priority project after priority project. Hopefully there won't be any emergencies next week, as I might actually be able to get some hacking on spinwebd done if there aren't...

[ "I want you to go down to the corner store and buy yourself a clue." ]

8 Dec 2000 (updated 9 Dec 2000 at 20:27 UTC) »

Well, the shipment of new computer toys that I ordered on Monday has been charged to my account, but I haven't received a tracking number or products yet. For that matter, I never received an actual confirmation of my order (other than the automatic "this is what you ordered" response I got from submitting my order).
Hmmmm.....

I've surprised myself, and for once I have most of the decisions for my Christmas shopping taken care of well in advance. Of course, I haven't actually _purchased_ anything yet, but then again I also have plans to correct that problem next week as well. Historically I've always left things to the last minute, so it's a bit different not having to worry so much about it.

Had an amusing episode with an old cobbled-together Pentium system one of our clients wanted us to turn into a mail relay for them. I had managed to get it happily installing away when ahosey wandered over to look at it. He gives it a funny look and *blip!* the thing reboots and manages to fry something vital inside itself so that it no longer responds to keyboard events after POSTing.
We're no longer letting him anywhere near the machine room anymore. ;)

[ "Behold, the Sleep of Ages!" ]

Watchguard problems continue, althought I've managed to eliminate a lot of them. Now it's (hopefully) just a matter of taking care of an ARP-caching problem on one of the routers involved and I should (there's that dirty 's' word!) have things fixed.
Yeah right...

Something (I have no idea what) dropped the idea into my head of cooking up a web-based discussion forum for general MUD development. Looked at a couple of different things (including advogato-grown thatware). I'll have to spend some time actually setting things up and playing with them at home to see how they work out. Poking around will also give my brain a chance to finish fermenting this crazy idea it has. Thatware seems fairly easy and straightforward to set up, so I'll probably play with it first.

[ "Fear is the mind-killer." ]

Ah. Upper-management politics. The running gag in the department atm is that if we kill a manager, we get his/her salary. However, we also have to take their job.... Given the way things currently are, I don't think the Klingon method of advancing through the ranks is going to cause much of a change in management anytime soon.

Haven't had a chance to do much programming work this week. Problems with a client's ancient Watchguard Firebox (ooh, it's an old one that runs Linux! Ooh, it's an absolute PITA to work with!) have kept me jumping around trying to fix problems and find solutions to things for them. That and playing catch up with a bunch of security patches from RedHat this week has kept me nicely on my toes.

The Dungeons and Dragons movie comes in 7 days. Must... see... first... showing!! Yes, I'm a die-hard D&D gamer, though thanks to work I've not had much time to play as of late. For that matter, my interst in doing RPGs has tapered off quite a bit as of late. It's probably something to do with the fact that my old friends that I used to game with have been slowly drifting apart as of late. Sigh.

Looking forward to the end of the year. I've got the last work week of the year slated for vacation time, and I'm looking forward to vegetating and pursuing various and sundry recreational activities.

Rambling back to work-related stuff, I've had a chance to play around a little bit with Linux Router Project stuff this week. Seems to be a very interesting set of toys. I may get a chance to actually test everything out this evening if things don't go as planned at a customer site... If it works well I may start packing a LRP disk or two as part of my network troubleshooting toolkit...

Also at work this week, we discovered just how "hackable" old Watchguard Fireboxes are. Since they're basically just a bunch of cheap hardware running a customer linux system on a floppy disk, you could replace the Watchguard software with whatever you wanted, really. Say, for example, a LRP system. ;)
We also found out that you can drop a video card into one of the free PCI slots in the box and hook up a keyboard cable, and get console access to the system. There's just something fun about doing things with a system that they were never meant to do... I guess that's why I still get geeked about overclocking various bits of hardware.

[ "Tragedy is cheap, and so is talk." ]

21 Nov 2000 (updated 21 Nov 2000 at 18:53 UTC) »

Oof. It's been a while. Over a month, in fact. Bad me, I suppose. I promised myself I'd keep this thing more up-to-date.

Old News:
I suppose part of my delay was wanting to wait to update my diary until I had an answer to my job situation. A friend of mine was wanting resumes from his friends so he could nab some cool people to work with up in Indy. I dropped him my resume, went through an interview, and got a job offer a few weeks later. Whoohoo!

Well, not whoohoo. After being repeatedly lied to by the person who was going to be my boss, and over a week of unreturned phone calls and voicemail messages, I'm decided better off not having to deal with that mess anymore. Too much stress and no real reward to speak of, except perhaps a slightly slimy feeling from having had contact with such evil. Bleh.

Good News:
Three paycheck month this month! Whoohoo! I get to kill off one of my two college loans as a result, which is a Good Thing.

Last night I dropped by the mall last night and picked up a few things. Final Fantasy IX as out, was cheap (wow, now that PS2 is out there, the original PSX games have dropped nicely in price), and looked pretty cool, so I picked it up. So far from my first five minutes or so of playing it, the gameplay's much smoother than than anything previous.

I also picked up a pair of DVDs for my collection: Titan AE and Tombstone (yes, yes, I know, I know. DVDs bad. CSS sucks. Set DeCSS free, etc... As Doc Holiday says in Tombstone: "It appears my hypocrisy knows no bounds.").

Saw Red Planet last weekend. Mediocre movie, but decent "Sci-Fi Flick". The zero-g fires were done beautifully, and Carrie-Anne Moss in the shower is always a nice treat. The zero-g physics overall was done quite well, including the handling of large masses in motion.

Work-Stuff:
I've got most of spinwebd wrapped up. Working on putting together a command-line client at the moment, which I don't think I'll package with the daemon. The command-line client needs to interact with some of our internal-only modules, and my goal is to get it working here at work first, in the general world at-large second. A 'generic' client is definitely in the works though, as suso wants/needs one. :)

[ "Are you gonna do something? Or are you going to just sit there and bleed?" ]

16 Oct 2000 (updated 16 Oct 2000 at 14:46 UTC) »
mibus: Definately get an Nvidia. Compared to the Voodoo3, the Nvidia cards are usually both better in price and in performance. And besides, the voodoo3 doesn't support 32-bit color in 3d mode. And 32 bit color is goooood. :)

Slept a lot this weekend, which is good. Continuing to feel better, though the nagging feeling of not being completely well continues to follow me.Spent some time hacking on spinwebd over the weekend, working towards the log multiplexor option ahosey and I talked about a while back.I also pulled out some of my old mud source code and got geeked about it for a little while last night, which is a little strange. I haven't been really into mudding in quite a while, but there I was happily explaining all the cool tricks and toys I had written. Hrm.

Days RedHat has ignored my glibc bug report: 14
Days since SSH first promised to take a look at my patches and haven't actually done so yet: 31

[ "EggaMoobyMuffin" ]

13 Oct 2000 (updated 13 Oct 2000 at 16:07 UTC) »

Hrm. Friday the 13th. Jason lives!
Err, perhaps not.

In any event, spent the past two and half days home sick from work feeling miserable.You know, it's ironic that when I was younger I looked forward to being sick. Now that I'm more "mature" I've come to dread being sick. I can't really do anything enjoyable, even though I suddenly have the free time to do so. All the energy and joy gets sucked out of you. Still amazed I looked forward to this sort of thing when I was younger. Then again, high school was a pretty awful experience...

So Mozilla M18 is out now, and I've discovered that whatever was causing me to overlook the link to "Install PSM" on the milestone page has been fixed. So now I have SSL support in Mozilla, and it's all nice and friendly for use at work. Whoohoo!

Okay, now this is just plain annoying. I submitted a bug describing the minor inconvenience of having openssh keep a session open when there's a backgrounded child process of a su'd account still running when you close the session. I marked it as low priority and as a package enhancement (it's really not a big deal). Now, four days later, it's no longer in Bugzilla. No, it's not marked as closed or notabug, or anything else. It's just plain gone.
Grrrrr.

Days RedHat has ignored my glibc bug report: 11
Days since SSH first promised to take a look at my patches and haven't actually done so yet: 28

[ "He could get away with Murder One, and you would clean the smoking gun..." ]

Mmm. Been reading Illuminatus a lot lately. That book, combined with sinfest are usually enough to bring me out of just about any funk. So far, it's working.

The updated version of openssh that RedHat released as an errata package works nicely now. It fixed the odd MAC corruption error-thingy that I was experiencing when connecting to my ssh-2.3.0 box at work, which is a plus. However, it still does the odd "keep the session alive" trick. Time to go Bugzilla something else.

Noticed my monitor was doing strange wavy/sweepy lines again today. Started getting worried that it was going bad, so I went through and tightened all the connections and unplugged the component cable from the back (my monitor has dual-inputs :). Those two actions combined seem to have fixed things. My screen is once again it's usual self, which is at a slightly slower refresh than I'd like (the default 60hz, when the monitor should be able to do at 70). If stare at large solid-colored portions of the screen (like Advogato's background while I'm typing this) I can see the monitor refresh itself. Ugh, eyestrain.

I need some way to generate custom modelines for Xfree86 4 for a 1920x1600 resolution. Anybody have any, or know of a program to generate them for me? The programs I've seen so far don't seem to support 1920x1600. Then again, from most of the people that have seen my desktop, 1920x1600 doesn't seem to be compatible with their eyes. And yes, I can read it just fine. :)

suso was grumbling was grumbling about his randomsig program not parsing newlines in his quotes file. Browsed through the thing a bit with him and help him find out where the heck it was eating the newlines. Turns out the module he uses to do linewrapping was the culprit. I suggested he just borrow the necessary functionality and implement it in randomsig, but he just sighed and shook his head. So I'm going to try and hack it in myself, just as soon as I find that copy of the latest randomsig I have lying around somewhere... Hrrrrm....

Today was a surprisingly productive day. Did a round of security upgrades at work (RedHat security announcements are always so much fun). Pondered really odd masquerading problems that one of our clients was having (still no clue what's going on... yet). Finally managed to get ahold of a technician and get a time scheduled for them to inspect my television, which has been doing this strange crackling thing with the picture. The tech was actually quite helpful, suggesting that something inside the tube itself might be arcing, thus explaining the "snap" sound I hear and the instant of screen flicker that I get. I'm glad I got the extended service plan on the thing now...

Tomorrow shall be more pokings at the strange masquerade problems, a nice meeting in the morning with some more clients about setting up another Linux colocated server (whoohoo! :) and more general fun. Ah, it's nice when a Monday gets off to a good start. Of course, this just means it's going to ambush me during the week sometime... Mondays always get their revenge.

Days RedHat has ignored my glibc bug report: 7
Days since SSH first promised to take a look at my patches and haven't actually done so yet: 24

[ "Save tonight and fight the break of dawn... Come tomorrow... Tomorrow I'll be gone." ]

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