w w w . n m m a . d k

An unfinished space for strange tech stuff
Replacing windows 

So Samba will share files and printers, and you dont even need Samba to share printers, when CUPS does it just fine. (see below). There is ftp, smtp and pop3 and imap plus apache and vnc on board... Everything can be set up from a nice webbase interface, - webmin. Who needs a windows server then?

Sharing linux printers, - very briefly

Tell windows to attach to an internetprinter or url


public static void main()

A joke that has to be. Type all that must I?? Laughing their pants off someone must be. 

public static void main() 

Hrmpf! A good one that is...

Using an USB harddisk with WinXP, Fedora Linux and MacOS X

So you have an USB disk? So do I, and I thought I'd use it for something usefull. I have files on winXP, win2k3, MacOSX and a bunch of Fedora boxes, and occasionally I need to move stuff around or just save it for later use.
Not easy. WinXP will only format the disk as NTFS. MacOSX will mount NTFS in read only mode. Fedora will not mount it at all. There are kernel patches for Fedora, that will make Fedora read NTFS, but hey... MacOSX still won't write to it.

Solution: Format it as FAT32 on the Fedorabox... 

First figure out the device it is on:

fdisk -l

There should be a disk without a partitiontable. It is probably /dev/sdc

Now do

fdisk /dev/sdc

To get a single big partition

n = new partition
p = primary
1 = partition 1
t = set type
l = list types, 83 = linux, 7 = NTFS (don't want that) b = fat32 (We want that)
w = write partition table

Back to the prompt.
To format as FAT32 - now do

mkfs.msdos -F32 /dev/sdc

... and you are done.

The Linux does not seem to care about winXPs size limit on fat32 drives, and winXP seems to like the format no matter what. I tried this with 20, 40, 60 and 80 Gigs. No probs at all.

The windows command line format will actually format FAT32 even on winXP, but it will not format disks larger than some thirty Gigs.

Remember that fat32 has a max filesize of 4Gb, so using this disk for backup with XPs backup program is a nogo, if you have more than 4Gigs to backup.

Resize NTFS partition

Hehe; WinXXX does not allow partition resize. Partition magic wants your money before resizing  anything. What to do? Boot Knoppix, and run qtparted from a root console. Knoppix is a linux distro. It will boot the entire system including graphix, office, internet and what not directly from a CD. Qtparted is a graphical interface to a bunch of textmode ntfs- tools. It will shrink, grow or move your NTFS drive; It will even do it non-destructively.

If you have an antique machine, it might not want to boot from the CD. Boot Knoppix on another computer, and generate boot floppies. (It's in the menu somewhere).

BTW: qtParted does not like the Windows Dynamic Disk.

USB Harddisk on MAC

The tiny 2.5" external USB harddisks should feed on the power from USB. Sometimes they don't. On an iBook 800 G3 it will run good as a fat32, but it will need external power. That goes for the Family Net PC as well. 

Remember that fat32 has a max filesize of 4Gb, so using this disk for backup with XPs backup program is a nogo, if you have more than 4Gigs to backup.

Backup winXP  

Again, Knoppix comes to rescue; Boot it, make an archive of the entire partition and save it to an external (USB) drive. More details to come...

WinXP Boot Image  

Who needs that? If the system crashed, you will want to read disks and rescue stuff to an USB drive. Again, Knoppix comes to rescue; Otherwise google for BartPE; It will boot a sort of windows. 

F@mily Net  

A few years back I bought a couple of F@mily Net systems. They came with 10Gb Harddisk, 128Mb ram, 566MHz Celeron (Coppermine) with passive cooling. Delightfully quiet and with a tiny footprint of just over an A4 page. A pretty nice device.

Today it seems somewhat outdated, but there are a couple of upgrades to consider. Running Linux or winXP on a Celeron 566 with 256Mb memory is fine for email, web and a little home office work. Webserving is also running just fine.

  • It will run good with 256Mb, but 512Mb is even better. There are two slots for a max of 2 x 256 Mb PC133 sdram.
  • It will run good with a 80Gb or even a 120Gb harddisk. 
  • It will overclock, and it can also host a new 1133Mhz Celeron. No extra cooling needed.

 More to come

iBook ram upgrade 

It seems that the iBook 800 (G3) wants 144 pins SODimm SDRAM PC133. It seems my trusty old Dell Inspiron 4100 wants that too. Strange it is that the apple shop charges 50 percent more for that same piece of ram. Hmm. More on that too.

Using VNC as a sort of Linux Terminal Server

Yep; Install vnc as a service in xinetd, and it will create real sessions on demand. If you have wine on your box, - this setup can replace a terminalserver or Citrix setup. Only annoying thing is, that sessions are killed, when you exit. This can be circumvented, but then you loose the on demand functionality, as you need to define a (remote accessible) session per user. NX will do both session on demand and persistent sessions, but I cannot get NX to work. It seems to be very fragile and sensitive with regards to network latency and stuff.