Faro - Graffiti
Dear AMD - GRARRRRRRRRGH!
I am reinstalling Linux on my laptop for the second time today and the seventh time in as many days. This time I have opted for Ubuntu 12.04.2, a long-term support release. As always, my reasoning is related to video cards, specifically AMD/ATI Catalyst drivers. The 13.04 beta that I had been running for the past few days was fine, but my attempts to get the laptop’s Mobility Radeon HD4250 working correctly were for nought. The drivers installed well enough - using the makson96/fglrx PPA to install fglrx-legacy, support in the mainline Catalyst drivers for HD4xxx having been dropped last summer - but the X server wouldn’t start. Logging into the box remotely via SSH to look at Xorg.0.log revealed that it had hung after loading the DDC module; additionally, X was consuming 100% CPU and I was unable to switch to a different TTY.
Ultimately I had to revert to the open source Radeon driver. Besides the performance handicap that this driver represents, its power management functionality doesn’t work correctly. Instead of reducing GPU clock cycles when the system isn’t doing much graphically, the driver keeps the clock high; as a result, the fan is running at full tilt constantly, blowing hot air out through the vents. Much dicking around with the contents of /sys/class/drm/card0/device/power_profile and power_method did little to temper the heat or fan-speed.
Never one to accept a sub-standard solution, I am attempting to get the legacy drivers running in last year’s .04 Ubuntu release. May God have mercy on my soul, for I do not wish to install Windows 7. Again.
A short Python script - my first - that uses Pynfdump to parse nfdump data and output a list of busiest source ASNs. Also uses RIPE’s REST API to resolve each ASN to something meaningul.
It’s sort of astounding that after fifteen or sixteen years of tinkering with Linux distros, the thing that ultimately makes it a disheartening, disappointing experience is still the abysmal graphics drivers situation.
SparkleShare - Change Folder Location
Quick follow up to my earlier post about SparkleShare. On Windows, the default location for SparkleShare’s local copy of your projects is c:\users\%USERNAME%\SparkleShare. This isn’t always ideal - for example, you might want to store your SparkleShare projects on another, larger partition.
You can change the location of the SparkleShare folder:
- First, exit SparkleShare
- Move the SparkleShare folder to the new location
- Use Explorer to navigate to C:\Users\%USERNAME%\AppData\Roaming\SparkleShare and open config.xml in your favourite text editor.
- After the <user>…</user> block, add the following, substituting the correct path: <folder_path>path/to/sparkleshare/folder</folder_path>.
Start SparkleShare again and it should pick up the change to its folder location.
Something else that could be useful to know is that the known_hosts file for SparkleShare’s SSH sessions is located at C:\Users\%USERNAME%\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\SparkleShare\msysgit\.ssh. I had to manually update this file when I moved the remote git repository containing my SparkleShare projects to a new server.
One of my new favourite things is SparkleShare, which is sort of a simplified front-end to Git (the version control system du jour) that you can use to sync directories between multiple computers. The Git back-end means that you get all the benefits of version control - rollback changes to documents, undelete etc., but these require a bit of terminal voodoo (i.e., you need to drop into Git-proper to do any of this).
The SparkleShare website refers to ‘projects’, seemingly positioning it as a tool for dev types, but I’m using it to sync my Documents, Pictures and Desktop folders, as well as a folder that contains a handful of self-contained apps such as PuTTY, Pageant, nmap and Process Explorer.
I wrote a PHP class for interacting with CouchDB. Also includes cdbCli.php, a simple tool that lets you interact with your CouchDB databases from the command line without having to mess around with curl.
Out and about