Archive for February, 2006

A Brilliant Idea.

Friday, February 17th, 2006

While watching Olympic Ice Dancing (yes, Olympic Ice Dancing… Its not my fault.), my lovely fiance came up with the idea of the year.

Three words: Strippers on Ice

Granted we’ve been drinking to calm her back spasms brought on her love of shoveling snow. I was just drinking to keep her company…

Once again: Strippers on Ice

The idea has captivated us both.

Good night and God bless. (alcohol)

To Live Another Day

Sunday, February 12th, 2006

I’ll admit, I checked on it more than once throughout the day.

glenn@stammdebian:~$ uptime
16:49:06 up 318 days, 4:27, load average: 0.07, 0.02, 0.00

We made it through. I don’t know how long the power was off, or if it was even off at all. We may have to go through this all over again next week if they didn’t finish.

Just another 47 days of worry…

We’re getting close!!!

Saturday, February 11th, 2006

Linux 2.4.18-bf2.4 #1 Son Apr 14 09:53:28 CEST 2002 i686 unknown

The programs included with the Debian GNU/Linux system are free software; the exact distribution terms for each program are described in the individual files in /usr/share/doc/*/copyright.

Debian GNU/Linux comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by applicable law.

Last login: Wed Feb 17 13:06:58 2006 from [obscured]
glenn@stammdebian:~$ uptime
14:49:53 up 317 days, 2:28, load average: 0.02, 0.04, 0.00

In just a few short month my precious little trooper of a Debian box will have been up, without a reboot, for a year.

Unfortunatly, in the infinte wisdom of those that be, our buildings power will be upgraded on Sunday.

This could easily be a much longer post as I describe my turmoil and the jeers of my fellow co-workers. I had gone so far as to consider renting a gas powered generator and babysitting the damn thing. Time and money have made this an overzealos plan.

Dave is going to power down the Stamm servers, like any other sane person would do and I am going to try to ride out the storm on the then nearly zero load UPS.

We’ll all find out on Monday whether or not it made it over the weekend.

317 days…

ChangeShortName: We All Need a Change Sometime.

Wednesday, February 1st, 2006

Macs have staying power. In an world where PC manufacturers want you to think that your PC is old in six months, Macs have a tendency to stay in use much longer. I still work on Graphite G4s that are being used for production.

Older Macs get passed down the food chain as the top users get new machines or get repurposed as RIP servers, scanning stations and file servers. They get new jobs and new users. Sometimes they even outlast the users.

No matter how old the computer, a faster one is always better and any user in his right mind would be remiss in turning one down. When they get that “new” Mac, they have a couple of options, somewhat based on time and available technical skill.

First, the new Mac can be wiped clean, with a fresh system and applications installed. This is great as it gives the user a fresh start, free of their old crufty data and OS quirks.

Next, the users previous Mac can be cloned to the “new” one, OS, applications, data and all. This is also great, as it give the user little or nothing to get used to with the new computer. In a later post, I’ll talk more about cloning along with its plusses and minuses.

Finally, and more to the point of this post, the user just takes over where the previous one left off. This happens a lot in situations where there is little time and experience available. Many times they do not even create a new user, especially where one person is taking over for another.

If the user is lucky (or if they manage to do it themselves), the long, descriptive user name will be changed to their name, giving them more of a feeling of ownership over their new workstation. However, Mac OS X will not allow you to change the short name for the user in the Users Preference Pane. There are many instances where this can become more than just a minor irritation.

Luckily, Dan Frakes comes to the rescue with a offshoot from his book Mac OS X Power Tools, Second Edition. ChangeShortName is a tool that allows you to update the short name for a user comprehensively and relatively safely.

There are some caveats, but for the most part it works very well, as long as you pay attention and think ahead. It is important to read the PDF that comes with it, however.

To run it:

First, download ChangeShortName.

ChangeShortName can be run directly from the mounted image.

ChangeShortName HelperI am usually partial to the Terminal, but in this case they have packaged a nice GUI interface, called ChangeShortName Helper, that does everything I need. If you are interested in using it from the Terminal, reference the PDF. Just launch ChangeShortName Helper, choose the username that you want to change and fill out the requested fields.

Change Short User Name script (v1.1.3)
Written by James Bucanek
Based on a procedure developed by Dan Frakes

Ready to rename account 'stamm' (stamm) to 'stammbt' (Stamm Business Technologies).
Proceed? (yes/no):

Type yes and hit enter.

You will now need to provide the password for account 'glenn'.
This account must have administrative access to proceed.

Enter your password and hit enter. You will not see your password or even the familiar bullets, so you have to trust your fingers.

NetInfo database 'local.nidb' backed up to 'local-ChangeShortNameBackup-2006Jan31-154213.nidump'
Values in NetInfo record '/users/stammbt' updated.
Group 'stamm' renamed to 'stammbt'.
Home directory renamed from /Users/stamm to /Users/stammbt
Reconfigured Personal Web Sharing.
ChangeShortName is now finished.
You may now close this Terminal window.

All Done!

If you changed the short name of the logged in user, log out and log back in to make the changes apparent and to keep the OS from getting too confused. Should ShortNameChange cause problems or become interupdted in the middle of the proccess, there is a repair function in both the command and the ShortNameChange Helper.

Developer’s Page
Download: ChangeShortName