Sunday, January 28, 2007


Solaris Express Community Release 55b

My new memory finally arrived this weekend and found the bad IDE connection so now my HP Pavilion 642n is once again useful. It only had 512m of memory which was just not enough for Vista (which I use for games and just to see how the other half lives) and the developer edition of the new Solaris Express Community Release (SXCR) 55b. The latest version of SXCR is definitely a milestone release. In my opinion this is the release that is probably the first one I would highly recommend to developers new to Solaris. Be warned, you need at least 768m for the developer edition to install. You can force it but as I found things did not go well. The new release comes with all kinds of extra things for developers but by far the best feature is the installation. It actually sets up a host name and DHCP for the initial install. Easiest Solaris install ever. No tweaking just install and yo have a usable system!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


When disk space gets low

Over the past couple of days we had the same problem on two on two of the VMware ESX servers at where I work. The problem was that we had intermittent trouble connected to the consoles of the running guest machines from virtual center. Something seemed to be wrong with the server itself so the first thing I did was to log in and check the logs. The problem was that /var was filled up on both machines. This was an easy fix to get things back going, just clean up the old log files.

Then a little the Notes admin gave me a call, seems like one our Notes servers crashed hard. The problem, low disk space on C:. However, it did not clean up as easily as the ESX server did.

Solaris in the past has been a little more forgiving than the other two when space runs out. On my systems at home I usually just a really big / partition. Once I had a memory stick go bad and after awhile the log files filled up the 60gig drive. Nothing ever stopped working or behaved erratically.

Monday, January 15, 2007


Looking for Work

As of today I am on the market looking for a new position. So if you or someone you know is looking for a top notch developer drop me an email!

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Sparc test drive

Since I "retired" my Sun Blade 100 several moths ago I really haven't done much with OpenSolaris on Sparc. But recently I had a chance to try out build SXCR 54 on a borrowed Sun Blade 1000. It really struck me how similar the user experience was between the two platforms. I did notice two differences. First, the Sparc platform gets the Adobe Acrobat reader. At first this might seem like a real big plus for the Sparc platform. Guess again. It doesn't run very well. Evince is just fine for what I need. Second, you can't change the screen resolution from Gnome. I had to remember that I needed ffbconfig. And naturally when I changed it the first time I picked a resolution my monitor didn't agree with. Just make sure you have networking in place before you mess around with ffbconfig. You may need to ssh in to straighten things out!

I really didn't have much of an opportunity to do too many benchmarks the Sun Blade 1000. However, from what I could tell it really is a machine that one could live with on a daily basis (unlike the Sun Blade 100). That is pretty amazing when yo realize the it was released 2000 and seven years later it still is usable.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Vista Test Drive

I decided to give Windows Vista a try. I installed it on my HP Pavillion a642n. The install was not much of a big deal excpet for the PCI network card I use for OpenSolaris did not work. I had to enable the mother board nic instead. The sound card didn't work out of the box either which is strange since it is just a plain AC97. But once the NIC card was straightened out I use the update drivers feature and it fixed the problem. So the experience of installing Vista was pretty close to installing Solaris Express!

As for Vista, seems like a OS X knock off really. Also the whole Aero thing doesn't really impress to much but that is just my tastes I guess. But if you are in to Windows probably not a bad evolution I guess. I'll stick with Solaris.

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