Meet you back here in half an hour.
What are you going to do?
What I always do - stay out of trouble... Badly.

Monday, December 31


Something Different

I just got a cease & desist letter from drive J.  One of my external drives has been a little balky lately, requiring me to turn it off and on (or unplug it an plug it back in) to get it going.  And just now it stopped working entirely.

So as a last resort, I pulled it from its enclosure and stuck it into the spare bay in Haruhi.

And...  It worked.  Came up first time, no errors, all data intact, just as the fireworks started going off in the distance.

Happy New Year everyone!  It's gotta be better than 2007. eek

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:04 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Saturday, December 29



Or a success-like event, anyway.

I've managed to boot Naga on the FC4-x86-64 Rescue CD, and after a bit of poking around with fdisk, managed to manually reconstruct one of the two 800GB arrays.  I'm copying data off that right now.

The other array is down because of a failed disk, so unless I can somehow coax that drive to life (or copy it onto another drive), that one is toast - it was RAID-0.  Several smaller RAID-1 arrays have also been brought back to temporary life.

Fortunately, while the missing array held the majority of my old anime, it's also the one that I have better backups of.  The other array, the one that I have managed to get working, only has about 300GB of anime, but it also has about 400GB of assorted stuff - backups of, photos, files, music - hundreds of thousands of little files for which I don't even have a complete catalog. 

So at least I'll be getting that back: After finding the old /usr partition I got rysnc up and running and it's pushing 25MB a second across to Yurie.

At this point I'd given up hope of getting anything off that machine, so every byte is a bonus. smile

Update: For some reason, rsync will burp and die every few gigabytes.  But it's rsync, so I just send it on its way again.

Update: Oh look, Bleach.  Goody.  Of course, I have Bleach, on my external drive, on my new PC, on DVD-R, and on DVD now that it's been released here.  But I've also recovered it from Naga.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 12:21 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Monday, December 24


What The Heck?

Minx just had a stroke.  Actually, it looks like MySql was at fault.  I just got five little "trouble at t'mill" emails, one from each of the Minx processes running, and when I checked in, my latest post was missing.

I bounced the MySql server, which made no difference.  Running a table repair on the database brought everything back, apparently intact.  And the last backup was only 45 minutes ago.  But still not very nice to see.

Nothing in the logfiles to indicate a hardware problem.  Bleh.

Update: Looks like Minx was going rogue and eating all the memory on the server.  Once all memory is gone, the next program to request some memory is summarily killed.  If that's Minx, no biggie; one of the other Minx processes will take up the slack and the dead process will be restarted automatically.  But if it's MySQL, bad things happen.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:47 AM | Comments (3) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Sunday, December 23


UPS And Downs

So I went out and bought that UPS today.  Well, not that UPS, but a UPS.  Nice big 16-pound 700VA unit.  Runs Haruhi and Yurie and all their ducklings (the four external drives) just fine.

Except...  It's starting to look like the problem with my MyBook isn't the power supply.  It's on a UPS, and it will still spin down while in use.  Hell, it spun down during a chkdsk.  That's not a useful feature in a drive.

I'm copying everything off it (if I can find the space for that, since I'm copying everything off everything right now), and then I'll see if I can work out how to open it up and remove the drive itself.  I have a few Western Digital drives in use, and none of them except the MyBook have given me a moment's bother*, so if I can get it out of the crappy enclosure I'll at least have recovered the larger part of what I spent on it.

Oh, and with four USB drives attached, Haruhi won't boot.  Unplug them, boot up, and plug them in, and it's all fine.  The interesting thing - for BIOS programmer values of interesting - is that it freezes somewhere between identifying the CPU and testing the memory.  That's something of a WTF.

I could turn a couple of them into eSATA and see if that makes a difference.  Not until I have them backed up, though.  Not after what happened to the late lamented Goldie.

* Oh yeah.  Except for the NCQ bug that crops up under Linux.  Bleah.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 10:33 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Thursday, December 20


Cool Tools

This is too cool.  Whack in your phone number, and it gives you a list of every ADSL2+ ISP available in your area and all of their plans and prices, which ones have ports available, and a map showing you where the exchange is.  Doesn't actually have an address lookup and distance calculator, but that's about the only thing missing.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 03:58 PM | Comments (33) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Wednesday, December 19


What I Like To See

Haruhi is running a virus scan and a mass uTorrent file check at the same time.  It's pulling 25MB/second across the network for the latter (the files are on Yurie).

My old Windows box would run like a slug when I did that.  With Haruhi, you'd hardly know it was doing anything... At least, until you got into your Minx blog and started typing, and noticed that the editor wasn't quite as snappy as usual.

Looks like I'll need that triple or quad core after all.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:27 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Tuesday, December 18


The M Matters

Because if you leave it off, you allocate 1024 bytes to the key buffer and 512 bytes to the query cache.

Which is not really all that useful.

Surprisingly, MySQL ran quite well even when so badly misconfigured.  It wasn't optimal, but it wasn't slow either.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:10 PM | No Comments | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Monday, December 17



Looks like the new server is ready to go, which is a good thing, because the deadline is basically today.

Today's glitch-de-resistance: bzip2-devel wasn't installed.  So the Python bz2 module didn't build.  So the Minx blog import module wouldn't work.  So Minx fall down go boom.

Currently doing what I'm always doing: Frantically pushing 200GB of data from one server to another before I lose it completely.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:07 PM | No Comments | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Getting Better All The Time

I'm copying my torrents folder across from Lina to Haruhi.  It's about 200GB, and it's only achieving 5MB per second, so it's going to take about 12 hours (during which time I can't download anything...)

As a test, while that was running I grabbed one folder at random (it just happened to be G-On Riders) and dropped it onto the anime directory on Yurie.  That ran at over 40MB per second.

Now that's an improvement.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 02:46 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Sunday, December 16


Well, That Was Horrible

I had Midori - the server; there's only the one now - scheduled for a ram upgrade Saturday at 9 PM Central.  They actually tried to do it on Thursday, but fortunately stopped before they could screw anything up.

So, I'm sitting there, waiting for the upgrade to start, while frantically running backups just in case anything goes wrong and trying to get two million files copied to Aoi before they pull the plug.  And the maintenance window arrives...  And passes...  And my backups finish.  And I post a query as to whether anyone is home at Softlayer.

And they respond (after an hour) and the upgrade is rescheduled for the next maintenance window, 2 AM - 4 AM Sunday.  And a little before 3 AM, they shut down the server and upgrade the memory.

And lo, the server is inaccessible.

So my first, second and third responses are to panic, for not only is this currently the only server for, it is currently the only DNS server for, so the whole shebang is pretty much off the air.  Okay, it's 3 o'clock on Sunday morning and no-one cares much right now, but I've got to get it fixed, and fast. 

Which might not be easy, because #1 suspect is a failed system disk.  The user directories are on a different disk, and backups are on yet another disk, but if I can't log in they don't do me a lot of good.

Now, among the goodies Softlayer provides me with is KVM and text console access.  Unfortunately, this is via Supermicro's IPMI tool, and it sucks your choice of equine anatomy.  Most notably, the K part of the KVM fuction suffers from severe arrhythmia.  When you press a key, you get, more or less at random, between zero and thirty copies of that keystroke.

Oh, and the text console doesn't work at all.

It's something of a miracle that I was even able to log in, and more of a miracle that I was able to quickly work out what the problem was: noexec was set for the /usr filesystem.  I'd meant to set it for /var/tmp, and missed, and hadn't rebooted since.


At precisely this moment, for extra points, the KVM widgie decided to invert my capslock setting, making it an interesting experience to navigate vi.  But I did, and I fixed fstab, and I saved, and I rebooted, and apache didn't start but I have an easy shortcut command for that because it's something I need to do every now and then and lo we were back again.

And I've spent the last seven hours on a five-minute memory upgrade.

On a Sunday.


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