Autarchy of the Private Cave

Tiny bits of bioinformatics, [web-]programming etc

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    Linux console/CLI/ncurses samba shared folders browsing

    16th April 2009

    Connecting remotely via ssh to my Debian box at work, I needed to mount a CIFS (samba) share, but didn’t remember server name (or IP) and share name.

    At least two convenient utilities are available in Debian Lenny for non-X Samba browsing.

    smbtree (part of smbclient package) will list all visible workgroups, their servers, and share names of those servers – including “hidden” shares like C$, IPC$, ADMIN$, print$. Very handy and greppable!

    samba-commander (smbc package) is a ncurses samba browser with “find file” functionality.

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    Posted in *nix, Software | No Comments »

    Intel i915 integrated graphics under Debian: how to get rid of sluggish 2D performance

    2nd March 2009

    I assume you already have configured and working desktop environment, but want to improve performance.

    First of all, sudo aptitude install mesa-utils. Then run in a Terminal/Konsole glxgears, and wait for ~15 seconds; if your FPS is ~400 or less, then you do have sluggish video performance (usually manifesting itself as slow scrolling in Firefox/Iceweasel, slow window switching/minimziing/maximizing etc).

    After reading through several forums and bug reports and blog posts, I’ve ended with the following modifications to my /etc/X11/xorg.conf:
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    Posted in *nix, Hardware, how-to | 5 Comments »

    Installing new Debian systems with debootstrap

    26th February 2009

    (…)
    it is a very useful tool for performing installations if you’ve got something like a LiveCD which supports your hardware.
    (…)

    Installing new Debian systems with debootstrap, and also as a debootstrap PDF (with comments).

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    Posted in *nix, Links | No Comments »

    How to fix “MySQL server has gone away” (error 2006)

    25th December 2008

    Source: George from vbulletin team.

    Two most common reasons (and fixes) for the MySQL server has gone away (error 2006) are:

    1. Server timed out and closed the connection. How to fix: check that wait_timeout variable in your mysqld’s my.cnf configuration file is large enough. On Debian: sudo nano /etc/mysql/my.cnf, set wait_timeout = 600 seconds (you can tweak/decrease this value when error 2006 is gone), then sudo /etc/init.d/mysql restart. I didn’t check, but the maximal value for wait_timeout might be around 28800 seconds (8 hours).
    2. Server dropped an incorrect or too large packet. If mysqld gets a packet that is too large or incorrect, it assumes that something has gone wrong with the client and closes the connection. You can increase the maximal packet size limit by increasing the value of max_allowed_packet in my.cnf file. On Debian: sudo nano /etc/mysql/my.cnf, set max_allowed_packet = 64M (you can tweak/decrease this value when error 2006 is gone), then sudo /etc/init.d/mysql restart.

    If you get MySQL server has gone away (error 2006) when using MySQL ODBC driver – give this hint a try.

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    Posted in *nix, how-to, Software | 52 Comments »

    Why I love Debian

    4th October 2008


    I love Debian, too.

    Though I prefer ‘testing’ (which is currently codenamed Lenny) over ‘stable’ (aka Etch).

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    Posted in *nix, Links, Misc | 1 Comment »

    Debian, fgl_glxgears: Using GLX_SGIX_pbuffer… Segmentation fault

    1st October 2008

    If you get Segmentation fault when trying to run fgl_glxgears in your Debian desktop environment, most often this would mean that 3D acceleration isn’t enabled.

    For the case of ATI (and ATI Mobility) Radeon series, the easiest procedure would be (doing all as root, or prepending sudo to all commands):

    1. aptitude update, to ensure you’ve got the list of latest packages
    2. aptitude install fglrx-driver fglrx-control fglrx-kernel-src, for the actual driver; I also installed fglrx-atieventsd and fglrx-glx (these are driver-recommended packages)
    3. aptitude install module-assistant, required for building the kernel module
    4. module-assistant prepare, to verify that you have everything needed for the module build procedure
    5. module-assistant update
    6. module-assistant auto-install fglrx, to build and install the fglrx kernel module
    7. depmod -a
    8. modprobe fglrx, to load the fglrx kernel module
    9. aticonfig ––initial, to configure ATI’s device section in /etc/X11/xorg.conf (for more options, see aticonfig ––help)
    10. reboot

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    Posted in *nix | 5 Comments »

    Which Hosting Control Panel to use for a Debian server?

    27th September 2008

    To cut the long story short: for the final evaluation, I had this line of control panels:

    SysCP: looks good to me (though demo isn’t functional), has customer billing module. Unsure as to where it is used, but most probably sponsors are also the users of SysCP. Majority of support forums are in German.

    DTC: has no demo, only some screenshots. Has a set of packages for Debian lenny (which is a huge plus for maintenance and future upgrades). DTC is being developed by GPLHost, and is also used by GPLHost – so this is a live (used) distribution. Seems quite feature-rich.

    Virtualmin claims to be the “world’s most powerful and flexible web server control panel”. Virtualmin offers 4 means to control it: Web, mobile device, command line, and remote API. There are both screenshots and demo. Has both GPL and Professional versions. GPL version has a number of limitations, comparing to Pro version. From what I’ve read about Webmin (all three – Virtualmin, Webmin, Usermin – are just different “layers” of server control), it is a framework with a number of “interface scripts”, which allow to control various services. As such, it is easily extendible, but is not monolithic – in the sense of module inter-dependencies and action triggers.

    RavenCore was a promising CP.

    GNUPanel is a year-old control panel, but has a news item on the front page (dated August, 17) promising new, completely rewritten release somewhere in October. By the feature list, looks promising. However, I need the panel right now, and even in October, that will be quite a rough release, not really used/tested anywhere, so not a good option as well. But GNUPanel is a panel to check in half a year for progress.

    As the final choice, I had ISPConfig (which seems to be the best by people’s comments), and which is also quite widely used, and is easy to install onto Debian (at least the Perfect setup: Debian Etch says so), and DTC. I discarded Virtualmin (for the poor functionality of the GPLed version), RavenCore (for the lack of current descriptions and non-functioning demo), GNUPanel (which just isn’t ready yet), and SysCP (because ISPConfig seems better ;) ).

    As DTC has Debian packages (and will be easier to maintain/upgrade), I decided to try it first. I already have it installed (that’s easy, esp. if you first read the DTC Debian Express Setup). Later I might post my impressions from using DTC.

    Update: DTC is indeed easy and pleasant to use. I had problems allowing FTP and SSH access using MySQL authorization, but at least FTP was an easy one to fix (SSH access with MySQL authorization is still unconfigured, but that’s a low priority for me). There is a minor concern about the files and directory permissions setup, but thanks to chrooted environment that is only minor concern. Use of a single Apache installation for hosting admin and serving user sites might be a sub-optimal decision, but it works. Traffic and disk space accounting are plain superb! Server memory use for the dtc-toaster installation is troublesome, but for a powerful RAM-my server that is not a problem (I now have about 800-900MiB RAM occupied, but that includes the XCache’s cache, quite big MySQL cache, and loads of Apache and PHP modules).

    But I’m still willing to try other control panels. As I expected, GNUPanel hasn’t released anything yet; Ravencore‘s online demo is still unfunctional; ISPConfig has recently released RC (and their demo is working as it should and as it used to); SysCP is also up and running fast. If my little hosting service starts pouring in some cash, then I’ll try SysCP on my second server – to compare it with DTC, and choose one of them for further support/extension/localization.

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    Posted in *nix, Notepad, Software, Web | 17 Comments »