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Postings for February 2023:  (14 posts)
Tue, 07 Feb 2023 00:30:35 UTC

Another hydra crash

Posted By Greg Lehey

One of the issues I have with my current hybrid setup with hydra and eureka is that I no longer have a 4 monitor display for processing panoramas. The closest I come are the two monitors on hydra, so today I processed two that I took yesterday. While I was watching it, small ?worms? appeared over both monitors, and the display froze. Shortly after, X crashed. There's not very much information in the Xorg.0.log, but it's the same as before: [1031521.666] (II) NVIDIA(0): The NVIDIA X driver has encountered an error; attempting to [1031521.666] (II) NVIDIA(0):     recover...

Mon, 06 Feb 2023 00:51:05 UTC

5 years uptime!

Posted By Greg Lehey

Since my Tandem days I've been fascinated by ?keeping it up?: rebooting is a no-no. And nearly 10 years ago, with a bit of cheating, I managed to approach the 5 years uptime mark. But then the system hosting failed, and there was no sensible recovery?after 4 years, 11½ months! New provider, new system. I didn't even mention it 5 years ago when I set up But it's been there ever since, and today I finally saw: === grog@ffm (/dev/pts/0) ~ 21 -> date; uptime Sat Feb  4 22:15:44 UTC 2023       10:15PM  up 1826 days,  7:18, 2 users, load averages: 0.76, 0.59, 0.51 That was 9:15 this morning.

Sun, 05 Feb 2023 00:43:18 UTC

More Hugin strangenesses

Posted By Greg Lehey

Last week I had a strange problem with my house photos: the photo east of the house had strange artefacts. But I removed the image before I could save it, and I wasn't able to reproduce it. Never mind, a week has gone by, and I've taken the next round of photos. And the same problem happened again! This time I kept the image: It's not quite the same: this time the artefacts are sharper. But they happen on the same image in the same place: The disturbance at bottom left is the panorama bracket, but that's in every image in all of the panoramas, so its presence here is part of the issue.

Sat, 04 Feb 2023 20:00:00 UTC

Larkin Poe Live, 2023

Posted By Tim Bray

Last night I enjoyed a concert by Larkin Poe (Wikipedia) at Vancouver?s excellent Commodore Ballroom. The music was just fine???more on that below???but mostly I?m here to think out loud about how Rock & Roll embeds into the wider world in 2023. If you visited the links above, you already know that Larkin Poe is anchored by sisters Rebecca and Megan Lovell; Rebecca sings lead and plays normal electric guitar; Megan also sings and plays what they call a lap steel guitar, but it looks weird to me (there are pictures below) and the Internet doesn?t seem to know what precisely it is.

Sat, 04 Feb 2023 03:01:46 UTC

Google knows where you are!

Posted By Greg Lehey

Found on a web page today: That's right! And it's the first time ever. I've had claims of being all over Australia, or in Europe or the USA. And the IP address hasn't changed. What has?

Sat, 04 Feb 2023 02:43:31 UTC

Old Unix sources

Posted By Greg Lehey

In the Good Old Days (last millennium), access to Unix wasn't easy. My first installation of Interactive Unix System V/386 came on floppies and cost an arm and a leg. Various people spirited away copies of Unix sources, notably Sun, for their own personal use. Times have changed. VETUSWARE claims to be ?the biggest free abandonware downloads collection in the universe?. And certainly their Unix collection is impressive. It includes both Interactive Unix and SunOS, the latter in source. I wonder what the copyright status is, or if anybody still cares.

Sat, 04 Feb 2023 02:01:51 UTC

X fonts revisited

Posted By Greg Lehey

I really need to do something about the X fonts on hydra. I seem to have Cyrillic fonts, but not east Asian ones. OK, what do we have in the Ports Collection? Lots of stuff, of course, x11-fonts/xorg-fonts seems to be the one I want: This meta-package installs all X.Org fonts and related programs. But it lies. The Makefile says: RUN_DEPENDS=    xorg-fonts-100dpi>0:x11-fonts/xorg-fonts-100dpi \                 xorg-fonts-75dpi>0:x11-fonts/xorg-fonts-75dpi \                 xorg-fonts-cyrillic>0:x11-fonts/xorg-fonts-cyrillic \                 xorg-fonts-miscbitmaps>0:x11-fonts/xorg-fonts-miscbitmaps \                 xorg-fonts-truetype>0:x11-fonts/xorg-fonts-truetype \                 xorg-fonts-type1>0:x11-fonts/xorg-fonts-type1 \                 font-alias>0:x11-fonts/font-alias And they're already installed.

Sat, 04 Feb 2023 01:35:22 UTC

hydra fail

Posted By Greg Lehey

Into the office this morning, and pressed on a keyboard to wake my sleeping Xs. hydra didn't respond. Yes, the system was still up, but the display wasn't. A quick check showed that X was no longer running. Did I accidentally close the window from which I started it? No, /var/log/Xorg.log showed: [761020.873] (II) NVIDIA(0): ACPI: received event: !system=CAM subsystem=periph type=error [761020.873] (II) NVIDIA(0):     device=cd0 serial="3C7126908574" cam_status="0x4cc" [761020.873] (II) NVIDIA(0):     scsi_status=2 scsi_sense="70 02 3a 01" CDB="00 00 00 00 00 [761020.873] (II) NVIDIA(0):     00 " [761023.396] (II) NVIDIA(0): The NVIDIA X driver has encountered an error; attempting to [761023.396] (II) NVIDIA(0):     recover...

Fri, 03 Feb 2023 20:00:00 UTC

Amazon Q4 2022 Financials

Posted By Tim Bray

For the last couple of years, each quarter I?ve been posting a quick analysis of Amazon?s quarterly business results in a Twitter thread. I don?t use Twitter much any more, and Mastodon doesn?t make it easy to post threads, so the blog it is. Summary: Amazon?s retail business loses money (as usual) but the AWS and Advertising businesses are huge, throw off lots of cash, and continue to grow fast. They subsidize the money-losing retail operation in a way that seems deeply unfair to me. Source: Q4 2022 Earnings Release. Looking at Amazon as a whole, quarterly sales are up 9% year-over-year to $149.2B, annual sales also 9% to $514B.

Thu, 02 Feb 2023 20:00:00 UTC

Abbie Angie Velar

Posted By Tim Bray

I?m driving a loaner car from the Jaguar Land-Rover dealership, a 2023 Range Rover Velar. I?m not in love with it. But it?s got a name: Abbie Angie. What happened was, my lovely 2019 Jaguar I-Pace was in for an annual checkup (first time I?ve paid a penny for maintenance). On Friday when I picked it up, the dealership guy told me ?Gonna be seeing you soon again, there?s this big recall, the problem affects less than 5% of I-Paces but we still have to do 19 hours of labor to tear it apart and put it back together.?

Thu, 02 Feb 2023 01:45:35 UTC

Keeping distress asleep

Posted By Greg Lehey

It seems that my attempts to get distress (Microsoft ?Windows? 10 box) to stay hibernated were not successful: it keeps waking up, and I can't tell it not to. But there's another possibility: get it to sleep, like I do with dischord (?Windows? 7). That only goes via a secret menu, but it seems to work. Only: it still keeps waking up, apparently every 30 minutes. I had found a way to disable the timers, via a link ?change settings that are currently unavailable?. But it didn't seem to work.

Thu, 02 Feb 2023 00:56:30 UTC

A third of a century of FreeBSD?

Posted By Greg Lehey

It looks as if I'm going to write an article for the FreeBSD Journal about the Early Days. And by way of encouragement, they want the article by 15 February. I've been using BSD since 19 March 1992, but that was BSD/386, a commercial sibling. It wasn't until the following year (19 June 1993, it seems) that FreeBSD was born (or forked, or whatever). From the calendar.freebsd file: 06/19 Charlie Root <> born in Portland, Oregon, United States, 1993 The original suggestion was that I should write about the issues relating to writing ?The Complete FreeBSD?, in the assumption that it would have been particulary difficult in those far-off days.

Wed, 01 Feb 2023 00:53:26 UTC

FreeBSD network performance

Posted By Greg Lehey

FreeBSD has almost the reference implementation of the Internet protocols, but that doesn't mean that it's perfect. Currently there's a mail thread on the freebsd-stable mailing list, in which the original poster only gets a fraction of the throughput on FreeBSD that he gets on Linux. Various suggestions on what to do, including setting undocumented sysctls?something that I have grumbled about in the past. I don't have time to look at the suggestions at the moment. One page that looks interesting is

Wed, 01 Feb 2023 00:49:44 UTC

Finding X fonts

Posted By Greg Lehey

One of the things that is definitely a problem with hydra are the X fonts, as I noted two weeks ago. How do I get a complete installation? Microsoft and Apple installations come complete; why not FreeBSD? Off looking, and once again came up with a maze of little twisty possibilities, all different. One of the more insteresting ones was to copy the Apple or Microsoft fonts. But there must be a simpler way.