Category Archives: HOW-TOs

Dell factory restore when F8 does not work

UPDATE: after all this work, I started up the laptop only to find that the restore had somehow retained data from the previous install. Need more investigation to figure this one out… Performing a factory reset on a Dell Inspiron … Continue reading

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How to check RAID status on an Intel board

I don’t want to dwell on how many hours I just wasted trying to get the status of an embedded RAID controller on an Intel S3420GP board running openSUSE 11.3. The solution is to avoid the dizzying array of software … Continue reading

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How to combine/concatenate mp4 videos

In a project similar to the Blender Defender, I am using a Linksys WVC54GCA webcam to monitor my devious cats. The camera has built-in motion detection, and can automatically FTP video files of detected motion to a location of your … Continue reading

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Solving openSUSE 11.3 mail server problems

Rather than follow an upgrade path, I painstakingly migrated the mail server configuration from an openSUSE 11.0 server to a fresh install on an openSUSE 11.3 server. Here are the problems I ran into and how I solved them: Problem: … Continue reading

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How to recommend movies to friends on Netflix

Do you remember when Netflix used to have a Netflix Community feature where you could add friends and recommend movies to one another? I was just now about to make a recommendation when I realized I could no longer find … Continue reading

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fdisk problems with large partitions

I recently upgraded my 3ware 9550SX-8LP RAID5 array from 250 GB drives to 1 TB drives. After the lengthy RAID initialization process, I tried to create a partition using fdisk. Unfortunately, fdisk seemed to only create a partition size of … Continue reading

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Image resolution in pixels vs DPI

When working with the print shop to create a poster out of a 3174 x 2153 pixel digital photo, I managed to get completely confused about DPI (dots per inch). I read a blog post called The Myth of DPI … Continue reading

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How to compile bandwidthd 2.0.1 on OpenBSD 4.3

I ran into numerous problems when trying to compile bandwidthd 2.0.1 on OpenBSD 4.3. The first problem was that, even though I had installed all the dependencies via ports, ./configure was still erroring out with: checking for png_read_info in -lpng… … Continue reading

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Volume discounts with PayPal Merchant Services

You’re probably not going to like this solution very much. To set the scene, PayPal’s “Merchant Services” contains a fairly straightforward webapp to generate “Buy Now” and other such buttons. When we needed to sell a product at work, I … Continue reading

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sh: read: -p: no coprocess

Just thought I’d throw this out there since I don’t see many google hits on it. The problem (on OpenBSD 4.4): $ read -p “Enter input: ” MYVAR sh: read: -p: no coprocess Oh, of course, “no coprocess”! Surely, if … Continue reading

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