Apr

30

Posted by : Arun | On : April 30, 2007

TuxGuardian is another Linux firewall application that was created with an idea to serve non-linux savy users. It’s a free software distributed under the GNU GPL. Some of the features of TuxGuardian are

  • Detects unauthorized applications trying to act like a client or a server;
  • Operates with or without user intervention;
  • Verifies the applications’ integrity so that maliciously modified software won’t be able to send or receive data through the network;
  • Uses a three-layered architecture of independent modules, which eases the task of addings new features and functionality

To use TuxGuardian, you need Linux kernel 2.6.12 or higher, compiled with LSM support. You can find more information on how to install and use here. From the documentation, it seems like installation part was not very layman friendly even though it was created for that purpose.

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Apr

26

Posted by : Arun | On : April 26, 2007

You might have read that I upgraded from Ubuntu Edgy to Feisty 3 days back. VMWare server didn’t work after I upgraded to Feisty. I had to download and install a patch before I could get it to work. I downloaded the patch from here.

Once downloaded, untar the file. Open a terminal and go to that folder (I think it’s something like vmware-any-any….). Once inside that folder, type ./runme.pl and press enter. This should start the upgrade. I went with the default options when prompted. Once runme is completed, it will ask you if you want to run vmware-config.pl. Type yes and continue.

After I updated VMWare server as said above, the menu entry under Applications -> System disappeared. I had to type vmware in a terminal to start it. It worked fine once started. You may have to manually create a menu entry if you don’t find one.

I tried Virtualbox again with the Feisty package and that worked, so I wanted to uninstall vmware server since it was occupying 6GB. If you want to uninstall VMWare Server, issue the following command in a terminal:
sudo /usr/bin/vmware-uninstall.pl
This should uninstall the application. Once it completes succesfully, delete .vmware and the folder you allowed VMWare to use (I used /home/myusername/VMWare). I’m going to continue installing Windows XP through Virtualbox and see how it performs. It did detect the CD drive this time and it also detected the webcam, which VMWare didn’t detect. More later….
(Thanks to Ubuntu Forums for giving ideas).

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Apr

26

Posted by : Arun | On : April 26, 2007

WiPeer is a software that allows users to share files directly among the computers, play multi player games, chatting and colloboration, all with or without wireless network. According to WiPeer, here are some scenarios where WiPeer can help.

– You are visiting your friends and would like to transfer photos of a shared trip from your laptop to theirs. Wouldn’t it be great if you could share your files with them directly from one computer to the other?

– You are sitting in a boring lecture. You and your friends all have laptops, but your university has not installed an access point in the lecture room. Wouldn’t it be great if you could play a game of Chess or Reversi against them, or even gossip with them about yesterday’s football match?

– You are stuck in an airplane for a long flight and you are looking for something to do. If you could only play a game of Chinese checkers with other passengers…

-You have a home network, or even a small office network, and you’d like to share files among your computers without having to set up a dedicated server. There has to be a simple way of doing this.

WiPeer is free to use. You can download WiPeer from here. The sad part is, It’s currently available only for Windows. It currently supports only Windows XP. A version for Windows Vista is going to be released in May. They are planning to release a version for Mac and Linux in a few months. I hope they keep their words.

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Apr

25

Posted by : Arun | On : April 25, 2007

Acer America is recalling 27,000 rechargeable lithium ion batteries manufactured by Sony. I don’t know why Acer took so long to recall.None of the incidents reported so far contains Acer laptops, but Acer is voluntarily recalling the batteries. The affected laptops were sold from May 2004 through November 2006. The affected models are TravelMate 321x, Aspire 980x, TravelMate 242x, TravelMate 330x, Aspire 556x, TravelMate 561x, Aspire 930x, Aspire 941x, TravelMate C20x , TravelMate 422x, TravelMate 467x, Aspire 560x, Aspire 567x, TravelMate 320x.

I have Acer Travelmate 8204. Good it’s not part of the recall. For more information, visit here.

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Apr

25

Posted by : Arun | On : April 25, 2007

Google uses MySQL open source database for some of it’s application. They have released some enhancement patches for MySQL under GPL license. They would like MySQL team to integrate those patches into the MySQL code and until they do that, Google has released the code under GPL license for anyone to use them.

The patches include support for semi-synchronous replication, mirroring the binlog from a master to a slave, quickly promoting a slave to a master during failover, and keeping InnoDB and replication state on a slave consistent during crash recovery.

The manageability features include new SQL statements for monitoring resource usage by table and account. This includes the ability to count the number of rows fetched or changed per account or per table. It also includes the number of seconds of database time an account uses to execute SQL commands.

According to the Google Code page,

The big features are:

Other enhancements include:

  • LosslessFloatDump – support dump and restore of float/double without loss of precision
  • Use 8X less memory for account and table privileges
  • Use fastest compression rather than the default level for client/mysqld networking
  • InnodbSampling – control the number of leaf blocks sampled for optimizer statistics
  • InnodbStatus – display more statistics in show innodb status
  • Reduced number of calls to fsync when the InnoDB background IO thread is active
  • Changed InnoDB to recover when InnoDB and MySQL data dictionaries are inconsistent
  • NewSqlFunctions – functions for checksums and floating point to string conversion
  • Backported START SLAVE UNTIL
  • Sort float columns with the order: -INF < negative < 0 < positive < +INF < NaN
  • Change long_query_time to be dynamic and log all queries that run for greater than or equal this number of seconds rather than greater than.
  • Count connection attempts tha are denied because of max_connections and display the count as denied_connections
  • MoreLogging – log actions done on specified tables and SUPER users
  • rpl_always_enter_innodb boosts the priority of the slave SQL thread (for replication) in InnoDB by making it ignore the InnoDB concurrency limits
  • rpl_event_buffer_size sets the fixed size buffer that is allocated in the master for each connected slave. The buffer is used for replication events smaller than the buffer. This reduces memory allocation done to copy replication
    events from the master.
  • Backported sync-binlog
  • Added reserved_super_connections to reserve the final N connections for users with the SUPER privilege
  • NewShowStatus – many new variables in SHOW STATUS

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Apr

25

Posted by : Arun | On : April 25, 2007

Antiword is a free MS Word reader for Linux and other OSes. Antiword converts the binary files from Word 2, 6, 7, 97, 2000, 2002 and 2003 to plain text and to PostScript. The programmers’ version is released under GNU General Public License. There are RPMs available for Antiword. There is no Debian package to use with Ubuntu.

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Apr

24

Posted by : Arun | On : April 24, 2007

I upgraded my desktop from Ubuntu Edgy to Ubuntu Feisty yesterday. I did a manual upgrade. I took a backup of my sources.list file and then changed all occurrences of Edgy with Feisty. I then did
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

It took some 30 minutes to download the updates and took another 30 minutes to upgrade. The upgrade went without any hiccups. Once it upgraded my system, my system hung. I had to use CTRL+ALT+Backspace, CTRL+ALT+DEL to reboot the system. Once rebooted, everything went fine. I got a warning that I’m using proprietary drivers from NVidia. I said fine, use it. Everything is working fine till now. NVidia has more option in their control panel now that before, including screen resolutions. The only application that didn’t work was Bill Reminder. There are no issues (generally comes with the upgrade) till now. Good job Ubuntu!!!

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Apr

23

Posted by : Arun | On : April 23, 2007

Seattle Times reports that an open-source software activist walked on stage as Gates was giving prizes to students and held a banner over his head that read, “free software, open source.” Gates and most of the group appeared shocked at the intrusion, which ended when the man ran off the stage and was tackled by security officials.

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Apr

23

Posted by : Arun | On : April 23, 2007

  • Bug 377641 – Outlook does not read iTIP/iMIP invitation because of missing UID
  • Bug 372287 – Sunbird crashes on open in Mac OS X 10.3

They are hoping to fix bug 377641 today. They are still trying to figure out the second one. They are planning to release RC1 for Linux and Windows once bug 377641 is fixed. If no blocker bugs arrive in RC1 testing, they will release 0.5 after bug 372287 is fixed. If RC1 has blocker bugs, then RC2 will be released before the final release.

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Apr

20

Posted by : Arun | On : April 20, 2007

I have written earlier that the videos started working in CNN after Microsoft released the plugin for Firefox. Well, it works fine for the videos in the main page. If the video link is inside a news story, it’s not working. It still shows missing plugin screen. For example, I was reading the news about American Idol here. I clicked on the 2 video links in that page and both didn’t work. The videos on the main CNN page works. CNN sucks.

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