Maintenance This Evening 11pm+

     This evening, starting at around 11PM, I hope to get the host machines up on Linux 3.3.8 and using a pre-emptive kernel.

     This will require reboots, maybe more than one if the first attempt doesn’t work, and each reboot involves hibernating all the guests, rebooting, then restoring them.

     Each server will freeze for approximately 1/2 hour during the process.  If you are on one of these and you are using x2go or nx clients, you will be able to re-attach to your session after the server comes back to life and pick up where you left off.

     I now have all the EL6 derived guest machines (CentOS 6.x and Scientific Linux 6x) on version 3.3.8 with pre-emptive kernels and the non-EL6 guest machines on 3.19.3 with pre-emptive kernels.

     This makes it possible for example to go to a server with x2go, fire up Firefox, go to youtube and, if you have an adequately fast internet connection, play a video reasonably smoothly.  It improves the general responsiveness of the servers.  With the old kernels, even if you had the bandwidth you’d only see around 10 frames per second on the video.

     I have resolved the issues between the old NFSv4 implementation and the new so older pre 3.4.0 kernels now communicate properly with post 3.4.0 kernels and id mapping works properly across the board with NFSv4.

Evolution of Geek

Live Customer Service

     Live customer service will be unavailable between approximately 7pm-8:30pm on Wednesday April 1st.

     If you call please leave a message with your name, login, telephone number, the nature of your issue, and how late it is okay to get back to you.  If I return before that time I will return your call, even if it is after 9pm.

Customer Service

Kernel Upgrades on Ubuntu and Debian

     I upgraded the Ubuntu kernel to 3.16.32-lowlatency and Debian to 3.19.3 built from source with pre-emptive kernel option.  I also somewhat cleaned up the start-up scripts on Debian.

     This fixed a stuttering video problem on Ubuntu when viewing a Youtube video via Firefox over X2Go.

     On Debian, it significantly reduced the time for the Maté desktop to come up.

     Let me know if I broke anything in the process.

     One thing I did learn of interest, a current 3.19.3 NFS version 4 client will interoperate properly with a 2.6.26 NFS version 4 server if the current nfs-utils are installed and everything is configured properly.


Old Eskimo Server – Parts Needed

     Those of you who would like to see the old ‘’ SunOS 4.1.4 based shell server stay alive please read on.

     One of two things needs to be done, either I’ve got to successfully get this operating under an emulator such as the Qemu Sparc emulation, some people have succeeded, but so far, not I, or I’ve got to find another M-Bus CPU module for this thing (preferably two identical so it can be quad CPU instead of dual CPU as it presently is).

     Getting emulation working would be my preferred option since it would forever eliminate the unobtainable hardware issue but in the meantime hardware is needed.

     I have a spare chassis, motherboard, power supply, but no spare M-Bus CPU modules and these have been the only components that have failed, and these have failed repeatedly.  The unit presently in place occasionally screws up which suggests it may be on it’s way.

     I have searched Google and E-Bay but so far nothing really affordable or if it’s affordable not readily identifiable as compatible.  Any help along these lines would be appreciated.

Remote Desktop Assistance

     If you are connected to the Internet but having difficulty configuring your mail settings or other issues, Eskimo now has the ability to connect to your machine, assuming you enable remote desktop and provide a user name and password, and then we can assist you by directly configuring or otherwise assist you in resolving issues with your machine.

     To enable remote desktop, first go into control panel or settings, and then into users and groups, and create a user for us to access, like ‘eskimo’, and assign it a password.

     Then go into control panel or settings and into System, from there click on the remote tab and add the user you just created to the remote desktop box on top.  If you are using XP or 2003 server, also check the “enable remote desktop” button below.

Remote Desktop Add Users

Type the name of the account you created into this window and then click “Add”.


     I added the timestamps to posts here so when something goes down / up, you can get a better idea of when and how long than just a date would provide.

Scientific 3.3.8 Preemptive

     Got scientific updated and running on 3.3.8 pre-emptive, although it’s bloated at present like the stock kernel.  The kernels I had built for CentOS were missing things needed by scientific, well at least it thinks it needs them, start up scripts try to load modules we really have no need for in our environment.  So running a 3.3.8 kernel that is pretty much configured like the stock 2.2.26 kernel for now which is inefficient but better than the original.  I’ll lean it out as time allows but for now bigger fish to fry.

Shellx Linux 3.3.8 Pre-emptive

     Shellx is now upgraded to a 3.3.8 Pre-emptive kernel.  The only EL6 based server not updated is scientific.  For reasons I don’t understand, it requires a different configuration, some modules are required by the SL that aren’t required by CentOS.  Not really sure why since it involves hardware I don’t have.

Mail, Web, FTP, Mx1, Mx2 Updated

     The web and ftp server, client e-mail server, mx1 and mx2 incoming and list expansion servers, have all been updated to Linux kernel 3.3.8 pre-emptive which has been optimized for use in a KVM guest environment.  This results in lower latency for these machines and faster responses.