Ubuntu 8.04 lirc_imon VFD’s

September 10, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Hardware, Linux, Ubuntu 

I got a silverstone LC20 chassi with a built in iMON vacuum fluorescent display (VFD) and IR remote control. I recently upgraded to Ubuntu 8.04 from 7.10 — yes I know, I am a bit late, but generally you don’t have to deal with kinks like this one when that happens.

Ubuntu 7.10 -> 8.04 changed the behaviour of the lirc_imon module pretty little, yet radically. The old default was to treat all iMON driven screens as VFD’s, but it now defaults to treat all iMON modules as LCD modules instead.

This results in tons of errors being pumped out (10’s-100’s per second), like this one:

Sep 9 21:35:00 fs1 kernel: [ 71.481262] /var/lib/dkms/lirc/0.8.3~pre1/build/drivers/lirc_imon/lirc_imon.c: lcd_write: invalid payload size: 32 (expecting 8)

Also, the VFD will not work. To make a long story short, to fix it, you need to tell the kernel module that the VFD is in fact a VFD and not a LCD, by giving the kernel module the option islcd=0. For example, in /etc/modprobe.d/options:

options lirc_imon islcd=0

I hope this helps anyone out there. I will soon try to have something together on getting the iMON PAD working properly. The basics was simple to get working, but the “mousepad” has been a general pain to get up and running properly.

Qt presentation tomorrow

September 8, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Development, Ubuntu 

So, I’m holding a brief Qt presentation on a demo i made a few weeks back. It’s pretty, and got a ton of stylesheets on it. Going down tomorrow at work. Hopefully people will be a little bit interested at least. It’s not that often I dare get my ass up there behind a podium, or speak up at all for that matter.

To be honest, I don’t know why really, I just hate being in front of people talking and possibly saying anything that might be wrong. Of course, there’s a reason why I’m doing the presentation, and not someone else. I’m the only one with any substantial experience at all of this subject, so why not basically.

Also, I’m feeling horribly stressed as of late. I started on a project last week, and it’s getting to me. Need to take a minute, sit down, and calm down.

Continuous integration and buildserver

So, I finally got around to trying out continuous integration and got a buildserver at home. Ok, not much use on any 1-man projects, but should be good enough for some testing at least. I’m currently using cruisecontrol for it, and so far so good. I’ve got a few points I sincerely react against, but I’ll get back to that a bit later.

For those not knowing what continuous integration is, I suggest reading the above link. Basically, when you run a project, you always run into some “final” integration problems. People have coded each on their own side, and you wind up having to “integrating” the code so that it all works as supposed. In the one extreme, you have everyone coding on their own tree from start to end, and then you finally have an integration session. In this shitty situation, you have no clue how long it will take. On the other extreme, you have “perfect” continuous integration, where every single line of code is tested and checked that it doesnt screw things up.

A buildserver such as cruisecontrol is an excellent tool for doing “good” continuous integration. What it does is as follows, it connects to your central code repository, checks for any changes. If there was changes, it downloads them, and then rebuilds the project(s). If you have done it properly, you also have a ton of tests that you can run on the project. This is then reported or output in several different ways. Did it fail, did it succeed, and so forth.

I might be able to convince my new project manager to use a cruisecontrol server for the project I am working on at the moment, and he sounds like he likes the idea. We just need to consider everything for this project, and I need to figure out just how it works and how to configure it etc etc etc =) . Either way, I think it will be interesting to find out more about this type of development, and to see if it actually changes the development in any large way.

Oh, yes, I currently got two things I need to figure out with cruisecontrol. If I got it right, it doesn’t support GNU Make. Not supporting make seems… well, to be honest, totally stupid. It’s been one of the biggest make systems for 20 years or more, so there’s bound to be like 500000+ projects out there already running Make. I know it’s an old system, but it works, and it’s there already.

The second thing, I’m not totally certain of this, but subversion support seems to be abysmal. I need to look more at it however to find out the lay of the land or something.

Iptables-tutorial explained

August 29, 2008 by · 8 Comments
Filed under: Frozentux.net, Iptables, Linux, Netfilter 

So, time to explain whats happened to the iptables-tutorial, it’s been rather dead for a long time now. This is kind of meant as an explanation on what and why things has gone downhill with it, but also kind of a try to define for myself what went wrong back then.

By now, it’s almost 8 years since I started writing on it. It all started as a short term project, a real tutorial if you wish. Due to the demand, I was rather amused at keeping it up, writing more material and so forth, but with time it took more and more effort to keep up to date and to add all the material I wanted in it. While the tutorial was at it’s high, I had 25 000 unique visitors per month on the main iptables-tutorial site alone, and all that traffic generated questions, and lots of them. At times, I received 70+ e-mails with questions per week, which required hours of attention. Also, Apress contacted me at this time asking me to write a book on iptables for them.

Having that burden on top of a project that was originally intended to have fun, learn and to get more experience makes a project much less appealing. Also, at the same time, me and my then girlfriend broke up, leaving me in devastation. In a sense, I lost my muse at the same time as I was the least interested in writing. I spent several weeks trying to get somewhere, but didn’t manage to get 2 pages out of me. This is where I dropped the tutorial the first time. I pretty much went MIA.

Either way, after a while (a bit over 2 years to be precise), I decided to give it another try. I had for a long time wanted to start writing again, and got around to it as I had the time and will. To make a long story short, I got too much to do with school and work and life in general for a while, but managed to get version 1.2.0 out before this happened. Another year later, I managed to get 1.2.1 out, and finally 1.2.2 which was the first printed version at lulu.com. Due to several minor problems, which turned out to become pretty large problems imho, I later decided to pull down the print version while getting my life together again so that I could focus on what needed doing again.

This is where the iptables tutorial is at this time and date. I’m not really sure what I’m hoping to accomplish with this post really, more than generally give people an idea what’s been going on around the iptables-tutorial and try to explain why it’s been … well, not keeping up with developments in iptables and netfilter.

I’m not exactly certain what will happen in the close future with the iptables tutorial. I’m currently working on a few other projects which are better defined and that should hopefully be possible to “finish” properly.. Ie, once I’ve done them, they should stay done. Once those projects are done, I might get back to the whole iptables-tutorial.

Keeping promises

August 25, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Linux 

Well, I did. I did write today again. Hah! :-)

All work and no play makes jack a dull boy,
All play and no work makes jack a mere toy.

Working again, working on a report of some kind, how to do an embedded linux project properly. It’s hard to define. I know how I would love to have it, but defining it in words is not. I know it should not be hard, but it is. A paper that is very good imho, Tips for planning an embedded Linux project. It gets all the errors down that we made, but it doesnt really define what makes a embedded Linux project great, or even good for that matter.

I also read anatomy of a hack earlier, it’s some interesting stuff, but I’m not sure this is what I would give out to people who really needs it. I’ve tried handing that short thing to a few relatives, we’ll see if anyone of them gets it.

Also, this is the real kicker today, I love Ted Dziubas writing, it’s the best tech stuff I’ve read in quite a while :-). For an example, read his Cloud computing: A catchphrase in puberty.

I’m turning into a real blogger, ain’t I? 😛

Iptables-tutorial 1.2.1 released

September 29, 2006 by · 7 Comments
Filed under: Iptables, Linux, Netfilter 

It’s time again for a second release of the iptables-tutorial. This consists mostly of bug fixes, updated/improved images, and improved printable formats and rewritten introduction to the tutorial. A lot of work has been done to the print quality of the tutorial since I am planning a release of the tutorial in bookform. The current version is at a major print on demand site right now, and I have ordered a first copy for proofreading. Once this is done, I am planning version 1.2.2 to be released. This should be in 2-3 weeks, maximum. Once this is done, I will contact everyone who has signed an interest in the bookformat. I'm sorry for delaying this for such a long time, but now it is finally happening!

Iptables-tutorial 1.2.0 released

June 30, 2005 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Iptables, Linux, Netfilter 

The iptables-tutorial was previously released on the 20th of July for beta testing. Since no mayor objections has been raised, here is the final version! I hope that people will enjoy reading this version containing
100+ new A4 pages, 5 new chapters, and humonguous amounts of uPdates and fixes. Please take the time to report any rough edges that you find!

Netfilter workshop 2003, Budapest

August 21, 2003 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Iptables, Linux, Netfilter 

Just got back from the netfilter workshop in Budapest, and there is most definitely a lot of interesting things going on right now. In short, <A
HREF="http://sourceforge.net/projects/nf-hipac/">nf-hipac/hipac</A> looks extremely interesting, so does pkttables and the current development on the connection tracking systems. It was a couple of days filled with information. Hopefully there will be a protocol of some kind up at <A
HREF="http://www.netfilter.org">netfilter.org</A> soon with more details.

Nebraska CERT conf 2003 presentation

August 15, 2003 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Iptables, Linux, Netfilter 

I attended the Nebraska CERT conference 2003 after a lot of troubles getting there. The presentation has been added under the presentation tab. Overall, the conference was really good, and if nothing else, it was worth attending only for the excellent food they served. My only resignation must have been the troubles I had with security while entering the states, and with United Airlines. United Airlines kept delaying the flight from Chicago to Omaha for 10-15 minutes during 7 hours, and finally cancelled it. They where unable to get me another seat for 2 days, so I winded up driving by car together with 12 others for 8 hours through the night. Big kudos to the people I went with! Of course, a big military boot to UA for being a nightmare.

Updated Ipsysctl-tutorial

May 21, 2003 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Frozentux.net, Ipsysctl, Iptables, Linux 

Updated version of the ipsysctl-tutorial released. For further information about what has happened, look at the ChangeLog. The biggest changes are fixed PDF and PS versions of the document, fixed some static links in the chunky.tgz and html.tgz packages and added proper ID tags to all sections in the document.

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