16 Sep 2003 kirby   » (Apprentice)

I'm an uncle! Actually, I've been an uncle for a few days (since the 11th of September), but I'm all exclamacited now because Steph and I are going down to Portland at the weekend to see the new baby.

Tooting Routing! I'm fed up with being behind a Windows router. When Steph and I first bought our house (12 months ago), we only had two machines. Steph uses WIndows. I use GNU/Linux mostly, but also Windows for Cubase, so I reboot fairly regularly. So, the only option we really had was to make Steph's machine into the router. Last Christmas, steph surprised me with a shiny new P4, whcih was nice. I couldn't stop laughing when she told me how she decided which machine to buy - she walked into the shop and said "My boyfriend needs a computer. What's the best one you've got?", and the salesperson tried to convince her to buy something with lower specs! Steph wouldn't have any of it, and came out with the P4 with a 129GB HD and a Geforce 4. So, anyway, we now have a spare machine - a p3 xeon 550mHz. I've only just found some spare time to turn it into a router, and I've picked Gentoo to do the job. I left it compiling the kernel this morning before I came to work - hopefully, by the time I go to bed tonight, I'll have a working router.

The funny thing is, if it weren't for the complete lack of configuration in the ICS software in WinME, I wouldn't bother. Yes, that's right - I'd just leave the WinME machine as the router. I'm no Microsoft fan, and I personally can't use WinME without biting into Steph's desk, but Steph is happy with it, it was immune to things like Blaster, and I realised the other day that this little machine had an uptime of like 6 months. I know that's nothing special compared to other OSes, but it's plenty good enough for Steph and I.

Damned stability: Anyway, I'm having fun with setting up Gentoo on the old machine. I'm starting to get fed up with Debian because it doesn't seem to break very easily. I always used RedHat until about 12 months ago, and I was used to the odd breakage caused by my fiddling, installing stuff I probably shouldn't and fooling RedHat into (trying) to do what I wanted it to. When it broke, I would fix it, and I didn't realise until now that I had loads of fun breaking and fixing my OS. Now I use Debian and it doesn't break very often at all. And when it does (because I ignore it's recommendations and install different versions of libraries or whatever), it's too bloody easy to fix.

DynaIP: When I get this router working, I'm going to have a look at something like DynaIP - are there alternatives?.

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