Older blog entries for suso (starting at number 15)

4:25pm (Listening to Brian Eno's Thinking Music Part IV)

Improved mod_frontpage

So Christof Pohl, the author of improved mod_frontpage asked a question on his forum about how he could compile the fpexec without needing the Apache source tree. I was able to look into this more and came up with a solution that only requires changes to the Makefile. Basically the problem was that the current Makefile that he uses has dependencies on files in the source tree instead of using the development files in /usr/include/apache (or wherever) that get installed when you install Apache. I sent the proper information off to him and hopefully now he'll be able to release his changes as a tarball and not as a patch. Then we could make an RPM or a Debian package. I think that would help mod_frontpage be more widely accepted.

That monitor situation

Well, I found out that Radius Inc. was bought out by KDS a year or so ago. On a whim I decided to call KDS and see if they would replace my monitor. Low and behold they will and they were quite nice about it too. I'm happy. Now I just have to take care of my ViewSonic monitor that's having problems. Why do these things happen all that the same time?

Lack of time

Here's another question: How come whenever I finally make time for myself to sit down and do something (like work on my ApacheCon presentation), something else that needs my immediate attention comes up. Yesterday afternoon this happened 4 or 5 times. I never really got anything done. Grrrrrr.

[The life you lead, the price you pay?]

21 Feb 2001 (updated 21 Feb 2001 at 16:07 UTC) »
10:42am (listening to Adrian rant and rave about Red Carpet)

Improved Improved mod_frontpage

A while back Adrian and I made some changes to Improved mod_frontpage so that it would work as a true Apache DSO module. Chirpo wrote us back today letting us know that our changes would be incorporated into the latest 1.5.1 version of the program. Cool. He also said something about how he wishes he could get fpexec (simular to suexec) to compile without needing the whole Apache build tree. Seeing that, Adrian tipped me off on an idea on how to fix the Makefile so that it will work.

LDAP

I Have been learning about LDAP lately. LDAP is pretty cool but is difficult to pick up at first because if you're used to relational databases, grasping the concept of object relations is kinda weird. I still don't think I have the overall picture yet. My final goal is to get LDAP working on suso.org so that I do all authentication and most user information tracking through it.

Other things

I just about twisted my ankle off playing frisbee last night. Ouch. The monitor on my windows machine when bonkers last night and it looks like I'll have to find a replacement since I think it's out of warranty (don't every buy a Radius monitor). Also the brand new Viewsonic monitor that I bought only a few weeks ago is starting to give me strange ghost images. Badddd. I'm just going to package that one up and take it back to the store for a replacement. What is it with me and hardware?

5:50pm (getting ready for Julian's lesson)

AeroMail

Back and forth and back and forth and forth and back.. Well, Mark Cushman and I had a rather long discussion on the status of my changes to AeroMail and what to do from here on. He thinks that we have the same goals for the program so he is going to setup a CVS server somewhere as well as a development mailing list for the program so that we can track our own changes as well as have archived discussions. I think this will help greatly in the development of the software. I've received a few more e-mails from people thanking me for making the changes to AeroMail as well as sending bugfixes and more feature enhancements. Open source is cool.

ApacheCon

I was able to stay home from work today (because I was there for 12 hours yesterday fixing a broken machine) and begin working on my presentation for ApacheCon. I'm going to try to look through the course notes from last year's ApacheCon to see how other people structured their presentations. Hopefully this will help me write a more successful one.

Clothes shopping

Too many pairs of jeans and shirts of mine have either gone out of style or have holes in them. So I went out to Target (great place to buy nice inexpensive clothes) and picked up some casual attire. The problem always seems to be that they never have my size. My size being average I would think that they would have more of it. Oh well.

14 Feb 2001 (updated 14 Feb 2001 at 04:53 UTC) »
9pm, getting ready for frisbee

aero|oreaMail

So I received a message from Mark Cushman last night about my changes to AeroMail. He liked them but he didn't want to implement all of the MySQL features. He basically thought that LDAP is a more widely used solution for storing user address books and options. He basically summed things up by saying that the features that I've added to AeroMail are not part of the straight line path that he is taking from version 1.4 to version 2.0 of AeroMail.

I'm cool with that and he has every right as the author of the program to decide where it's going to go. I just don't want to do a code fork. He suggested that I change the name of my code base to something else so as not to confuse users with a name like aeromail-mysql or something like that. So in my first attempt at coming up with a name I tried OreaMail(orea being aero spelled backwards). I went ahead and changed some things in the tarball and released my modified aeromail to the aeromail mailing list as OreaMail 1.0. Before I fell asleep last night I thought of a better name. WindMail. Since Aero is like air I thought Wind would be a nice related name and also it's a pun on windmill. There could be a little logo with envelopes as the blades on a windmill. Ok.....

So I recieved a message from someone on the aeromail list today saying that the changes I made were great and that they were just what he was looking for. That got me a bit hyped up and now I think I might continue on with my fork of AeroMail. But I think what I will do is everytime I make a new release of WindMail, I will also submit the changes back to the aeromail list and likewise whenever a new version of AeroMail is released I will try to incorporate the changes back into WindMail. That way they evolve somewhat as sister programs.

11:54pm

Hmmm, obviously the advogato software doesn't do input checking very well. As I was able to make myself a doubter of project universe by telneting to port 80. Not that I shouldn't be a doubter, but I shouldn't be allowed to be one officially I guess.

12 Feb 2001 (updated 12 Feb 2001 at 18:27 UTC) »
Getting late (listening to hIQ)
AeroMail

Well after a lot of work, I've done it. My changes to AeroMail are finished. In addition to the changes mentioned in my Feb 6th posting, I have made the following:

  • Textarea now wraps at 72 columns by default and is user definable. (thanks Chris)
  • Theme and Language display names are defined at the top of their respective files by the following format: //LanguageName: English or //ThemeName: Red
  • Date string for each message can now be configured to come from the header or the Date recieved from the IMAP server.
  • Date can be configured to different formats.
  • Forwarded messages are no longer quoted.
  • Bugfix: Index From: display will now check to see if personal is blank. If it is, it will set it to the e-mail address.
  • Titles on pages now are formated like this Program name - Folder or Action - # of messages, etc.
  • Added themes: red, blue and yellow.
  • Changed folders page to use the COLOR_ROW_ON, COLOR_ROW_OFF variables to alternate the color of the rows.
  • Bugfix: Fixed Personal name display problem on foreign character sets by using the e-mail address as the display name instead. I don't know of a better way to fix this one.
  • Bugfix: Missing newlines at the end of most of the files.
  • Fixed image attachment display so that it doesn't display the uuencoded text. This needs work though.
  • Composed messages now have a Message-ID: header line.
  • Replies to messages now add to the References: line or create it if there isn't one already.
  • Personal Name is added in the From: line along with the address.
  • Removed L_REFRESH_BTN translation in Hungarian language file because it's not referenced by anything.
  • Added option to options screen to let the user define their From line.
  • Made the MySQL options bit a configurable feature so that people who don't want to use a MySQL database for user options don't have to.
  • Appropriate changes made for languages.

So I've tarred up my new source tree and made a patch file against the aeromail 1.40 source code. I notified Mark Cushing with this info so that he can decide whether he is going to implement them in the next version or what. I'm going to give him a few days to respond before sending the patch to the AeroMail mailing list. I still haven't heard back from Mark on the e-mail I sent him a week ago.

WOW! It's 2:30am and I'm the stick tommorow morning.. Zzzzzzz.

11 Feb 2001 (updated 11 Feb 2001 at 06:36 UTC) »
After midnight...

AeroMail

I'm almost done with my changes to Aeromail. Right now I'm documenting all that I've changed and getting ready to make a patch and tarball, etc. for Mark Cushman. He still hasn't responded to my e-mail so I will probably also post my patch to the aeromail mailing list. Maybe I'll put the tarball on my website or something. I'm somewhat worried that he won't want to accept the changes that he's made perhaps because he wants to keep the "bloat" out of aeromail. Which is perfectly understandable, so I've tried to keep the feature additions to reasonable changes. However, the changelog that i've logged so far is larger than the complete official changelog for all versions of aeromail since 1.0. :-)

OpenFX

So I jumped on the oppurtunity today to be an official mirror site for the OpenFX project, which is an open source 3d modeler and render for Windows. They are in the process of making a Linux and *BSD port. I've always wanted to see a good open source 3d compliment to GIMP. There are several half-baked/half-started projects, most of them are no longer being developed. I hope this one sees some light...

6 Feb 2001 (updated 9 Feb 2001 at 07:19 UTC) »
Lunchtime (eating a sub from Blimpie)

Webmail stuff

So over the past week I've been making a lot of bugfixes and feature enhancements to the PHP webmail application called AeroMail. I've written the author, Mark Cushing about what I may need to know as far as re-submitting the changes back to him. It's been a week since I've written him so I think I'm just going to post a message to the AeroMail mailing list with a patch for the 1.40 source code. Here is a laundry list of bug fixes and features I've added.

  • Bugfix: Cc header is now only included if you specify it.
  • Outgoing mail is saved to a sent-mail folder.
  • Upon replying to a message, the previous message is indented.
  • Reads in signature file from a specified path on the filesystem.
  • Bcc compose header added and works properly.
  • User saveable options support through a MySQL database.
  • Can now change the following options:
    • Personal Name
    • Reply-to address
    • sent-mail folder.
    • Reply indentation string (defaults to "> ")
    • Signature file location.
    • Turn on/off Bcc: compose header
    • Turn on/off File attachment header
    • User selectable language support
    • User selectable color theme support
    • Configurable messages per index page.
    • Whether to show e-mail addresses next to personal names.
    • Whether to show uuencode attachment text along with attachment. (this needs work at the moment)
  • Bugfix: Index page range links at the bottom now wrap when the string of ranges gets too long to fit on the page.
  • When viewing the sent-mail folder the From: column shows the Recipient (To:) value instead.
  • Compose page now has a "Go back" button.
  • Message flags are now shown next to the message subject on the index page (eg. N for new message, A for answered, * for flagged).
  • Successfully replying to a message properly sets the A flag for the message you replied too.
  • Textarea width is now set to 80 columns instead of 85. (Maybe I should make this user definable too.)
  • Themes and languages are now automagically added to the options lists simply by putting an appropriately named file in the lang or themes directories.
  • Some other fixes and enhancements that I can't think of right now.

The reason why I haven't released all this yet is because I have to release a stable and featureful version of this web mail application for the users of suso.org anyways. I guess I'm going to go through a beta test cycle first. I've been using it for the past few days to read and compose some of my own e-mail. It works pretty well. I have to give thanks to Mark Cushing himself for writing some pretty easy to read and modify code. Kudos!

Other stuff

So I received an e-mail from Ken Coar (aka Rodent of Unusual Size) informing me that my proposal for a presentation at this years ApacheCon was accepted. Yea! Now comes all the work and preparation that I'll need to do. The presentation that I'll be doing is called "Apache and Frontpage" and is going to be detailed information on how to get Frontpage extensions to work with Apache in the most strange circumstances out there. Trying to get them to work at Kiva proved to be most fruitful as our complex webserver setup required us to make several modifications to the standard installation. Mainly to get it to work with RH SecureWebServer and do radius authentication.

16 Jan 2001 (updated 16 Jan 2001 at 16:07 UTC) »
Morning (wishing it was afternoon)

I suppose everybody who goes for a long time without posting a diary entry says something like "Wow, it's been a long time since I've posted a diary entry. I've been really busy and bleh bleh bleh..." Well, I have been busy, but that's not really my excuse this time.

Lately I've been trying to do other things to help calm the mind and bring better harmony to my life. So over the past few months I've been spending time with my girlfriend, playing Ultimate Frisbee on Tuesdays and Thursday with wetdog and friends, Going to see a film/movie at Chris Dent's house on Monday nights, playing Poker with some friends on Friday nights and playing a weekly game of DnD on Saturday afternoons. Also, I've recently starting working with my favorite 3D rendering program Imagine again. I'll try to post some images for all to view soon enough.

I've started redesigning my personal website mainly because it needed it and also because I'll want it to look a bit nicer once I start applying for jobs out in Seattle in the spring (at a time when kings go off to war). Check it out here.

16 Nov 2000 (updated 16 Nov 2000 at 17:06 UTC) »

Lately I've been doing documentation at work on the web server improvements I've made. So nothing really exciting is going on there.

I've been helping Joe out with the testing of spinwebd by installing it on the suso.org webserver. It's working like a charm after we made a few tweeks. I think I'm going to modify the program though so that it forks away from the shell instead of having to background it manually.

Last night I nearly finished up a program I've been working on that will send suso.org user's accounts invoices to them automatically each month. This will help me out a great deal so that I don't have to spend so much time doing these administrative things. Now I just need to get more users.

So I'm posting this diary entry for two reasons. One is to let everyone know that I'm back from visiting Seattle and I think it rocks there and two because I'm testing out Chris Dent's Diary Sucker program which he may release soon.

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