Cynics Soapbox

Random thoughts...

Replacement Laptop

It’s getting close to the time that my poor old IBM X40 will need replaced. It’s been a great machine and has served me well for all these years, but its age is starting to show. Like me, it’s starting to go grey around the edges 🙂 It arrived with a 40Gb hard drive and some version of Windows (XP if memory serves). During the intervening years it’s had 2 replacement batteries, a new 60Gb HDD installed...

Ubuntu Automount?

The Ubuntu install on this laptop is now on it’s 3rd version (8.04 having started on 6.10) and it works really well, except it doesn’t want to automatically mount USB media. It used to. Then it stopped. The problem started at the same time I installed the luks crypto and created an encrypted USB drive. That drive still works well and will automount, but any other form of USB device simply doesn’t. Using gnome-mount from...

upgrade to feisty

After waiting for the initial hysteria to die down and having not seen any negative reports about the upgrade, I finally pressed the button and let the laptop upgrade while I went to the gym. I’d already upgraded my AMD64 desktop, but the laptop is really my main workhorse and so I tend to be slightly more conservative about what I do with it. Any fears turned out to be unfounded. The upgrade went smoothly, but as always it...

feet

The feet on the laptop keep falling off. It’s a natural side effect of having pushed and prodded the poor little thing into my bags when there was barely enough space for it, but it’s still mildly annoying. Anyone have any advice for sticking them back on? Which glue should I use?...

new laptop battery installed

After a bit of hunting around I found an eBay seller who had replacement batteries for a reasonable price. I ordered it on Tuesday, it arrived today. design capacity: 25940 mWh last full capacity: 25940 mWh The original battery lasted over 2 years before needing replaced, so hopefully this new one will give me as good service. If not, I now where to get a new one 😉...

laptop battery

design capacity: 27360 mWh last full capacity: 8820 mWh Think that says it all really. Time for a replacement!...

hard drive

After the laptop died and I arranged for a replacement, I started wondering how I could get by until the new drive arrived. The answer I arrived at was an external hard drive with Ubuntu installed onto it. Getting this working wasn’t quite as easy as it could have been, but now it’s quite happy and I’m back using the laptop. Thankfully I’d managed to copy most of the files off that weren’t in an...

xchat2 freenode script

The first one I grabbed was a bust, but this one works as advertised 🙂 http://www-inf.int-evry.fr/~olberger/weblog/wp-content/identify_and_join_py.txt...

x40 disk dies

I rebooted from Windows into Ubuntu yesterday and watched in horror as it said various essential files didn´t exist. It was one of those ¨heart in your mouth¨ type moments that tend to preceed really bad events. This was no exception. The machine eventually booted into Ubuntu but with a read-only file system and some damaged files. Consulting with people who know it seemed as though it was a hardware problem rather than just a file system error. Looking...

automatic updates

One of the features that all modern OS’s require these days is that they update themselves on a regular basis. Ubuntu is no different and normally the process is as smooth as smooth can be. Occasionally though it introduces a problem – such as the one I now experience on an irregular basis when Firefox simply dies. One second it’s all fine and the page is downloading normally, the next there is no more Firefox. It’s only been...

ubuntu and usb

One of the really good things about Ubuntu was the ability it demonstrates to “just work”. Plug in a USB device and bing! It’s there. Or at least it was. For some reason it now doesn’t detect when I plug in USB devices. Nada. Nothing. Hmmm, anyone got any ideas?...

where is sunbird?

ubuntu still doesn’t have sunbird available as a package 🙁 It’s a shame as it’s an application I had started using mroe and more on FreeBSD. Having a timetable that could best be described as “variable”, the ability to publish for friends/family was one that had long made sense, but until the advent of sunbird wasn’t really practical. I saw that there is now Lightning that can integrate with Thundebird, but I really would like a...