Stan’s Obligatory Blog


Filed under: — stan @ 6:35 pm

Got a new 256MB PC133 DIMM from Staples to replace the one that had gone bad. $54.06 with tax. Sent in for the $20 rebate from PNY.


Filed under: — stan @ 7:23 pm

Lucinda knows how to tie her shoes now. She is, of course, very pleased with this.


Filed under: — stan @ 6:23 pm

I installed the ‘audio/mad’ port which can convert MP3 to PCM:

moe# madplay -v -o raw:Entropy.pcm Entropy.mp3
MPEG Audio Decoder 0.14.2 (beta) - Copyright (C) 2000-2001 Robert Leslie
     Title: Entropy
    Artist: MC Hawking
     Album: A Brief History of Rhyme
      Year: 1994
     Genre: Rap
 00:03:21 Layer III, 128 kbps, 44100 Hz, joint stereo (MS), no CRC
7722 frames decoded (0:03:21.7), +0.2 dB peak amplitude, 7 clipped samples

Then to burn them to a CD:

moe# burncd -f /dev/acd0a audio  mighty.pcm emchawking.pcm creation.pcm crazy.pcm LedZeppelinMedley.pcm JesseHelms.pcm Entropy.pcm fixate
next writeable LBA 0
writing from file mighty.pcm size 20664 KB
written this track 20664 KB (100%) total 20664 KB
next writeable LBA 9149
writing from file emchawking.pcm size 36306 KB
written this track 36306 KB (100%) total 56971 KB
next writeable LBA 25108
writing from file creation.pcm size 24408 KB
written this track 24408 KB (100%) total 81380 KB
next writeable LBA 35887
writing from file crazy.pcm size 24304 KB
written this track 24305 KB (100%) total 105686 KB
next writeable LBA 46621
writing from file LedZeppelinMedley.pcm size 54301 KB
written this track 54302 KB (100%) total 159988 KB
next writeable LBA 70415
writing from file JesseHelms.pcm size 33480 KB
written this track 33481 KB (100%) total 193470 KB
next writeable LBA 85144
writing from file Entropy.pcm size 34749 KB
written this track 34749 KB (100%) total 228219 KB
fixating CD, please wait..

Filed under: — stan @ 2:46 pm

Here is the rundown on the instability problem. The system hung and had to be unwedged on:

2003/11/01  08:28
2003/11/02  05:44
2003/11/03  21:59
2003/11/05  13:13
2003/11/09  15:38
2003/11/11  11:44
2003/11/12  09:09
2003/11/15  11:45

The average uptime between hangs was 28 hours, with a maximum of 78 hours.

Filed under: — stan @ 8:25 am

Found out how to read audio CDs:

dd if=/dev/acd0t1 of=test.dat bs=2352

This reads track 1 off the CD and puts in file as raw PCM data. Also, it is necessary to create the ‘acd0tX’ devices:

cd /dev
./MAKEDEV acd0t99


Filed under: — stan @ 7:12 pm

All the futzing around with X over the weekend broke mod_php’s graphics capability. I think this is because I had to install a new version of expat. I rebuilt mod_php and now it works again.

Filed under: — stan @ 12:26 pm

Installed a new ATAPI CD writer on Moe today. I was able to sucessfully burn a CD of the contents of our web pages. The procedure was:

moe# mkisofs -L -R -o output.raw /home/html
moe# burncd -f /dev/acd0a data output.raw fixate
next writeable LBA 0
writing from file output.raw size 133120 KB
written this track 133120 KB (100%) total 133120 KB
fixating CD, please wait..

I was able to then mount and read the CD, so I guess it worked.

Filed under: — stan @ 12:25 pm

Went to the office this morning and retrieved the old PC100 memory from my old computer in the junk pile. Brought it home and reassembled Moe with all the original components, but with the old memory. So far it hasn’t locked up, so I’m hopeful.


Filed under: — stan @ 9:21 pm

Made an attempt at fixing the system today.

Since the board and CPU I have are over two years old, I thought I’d start there. I got a new MSI board and Athlon 2000 processor at PC Club in Monrovia. Brought it home. Put it together. The thing wouldn’t power on. The CPU fan twitched a bit, so I knew there was power, but it wouldn’t start. Back to the store and exchange the board. Bring the new board home. Same thing. So I get a new power supply from Best Buy. Now it powers on. I don’t know why, but what the hell.

So now the machine boots. But now Xwindows is broken. My old S3 video card can’t fit in the new AGP slot, so I have to use the built-in VGA card on the new board. Turns out that I need to upgrade Xfree86 to be able to use it. So I build a new X server from the ports collection, and then I fire it up. The monitor goes blank and says “OUT OF RANGE”.

So I spend a couple of hours tweaking the XF86Config file and searching with Google before I finally find the problem. I have to have ‘Option “Use BIOS” “off”‘ in the X config. I do this and now it works. And then the computer locks up hard.

The system locked up hard several times. At this point, the only original components in the system are the memory stick and the Linksys Ethernet card. I took out the Ethernet card and ran for a bit until it locked up again.


Filed under: — stan @ 9:29 pm

Mommy took Lucinda to see the Caltech-Occidental Concert Band this evening. The show was Lucinda’s first time seeing a real concert.

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