Hannah Montana Linux is Real

Hannah Montanna Linux, You might think it's a joke, but the author claims it was created to entice young people into using Linux. I fired it up in a VM and it is actually real. It took me a while to find a torrent link that works so I'm attaching the torrent I used here. Here are some screenshots. I didn't actually get it installed because I accidentally only made my KVM guest's disk image 1000 MB and by the time the install failed I was ready to go to sleep, but I did get far enough to get some screenshots of the installer (including syslinux boot splash screen!) and the live CD functionality to get a feel for it. It is real.

Red Hat Enterprise Security: Network Services and RHCA

Yesterday I passed the Red Hat Enterprise Security: Network Services Exam (EX333). It was the last certificate of expertise I needed to complete the Red Hat Certified Architect program. On the first part of the exam I made a typo configuring a major service which caused me to lose a lot of time. After trouble shooting it for a bit I moved on to other things and after I completed the other items I came back to it and finally figured out my mistake with only forty five minutes left. I managed to get that major service and all it's associated services setup after that but had no time to reboot and verify they were all still properly configured. I had some trouble on the second part testing my configuration (I was not testing properly, it actually worked fine) but I lost time there too. In the end I wish I would  have practiced more but either way I got it and I'm pretty psyched:

Banshee and Amazon MP3 Downloader

I've always been annoyed when using Amazon MP3 Downloader to download full albums from their site because the RPMs provided are always only usable on older distributions (at least in the Fedora realm) so I was glad to see Banshee on Fedora 14 supporting AmazonMP3 Downloader within the app! Take a look:

Cacti Is Awesome!

I have been using MRTG for a while but I always wanted graphs for more than network statistics. So I finally setup Cacti this week. It took me several nights of configuring but I finally got it setup like I want for my home network. The key for me was installing these cacti templates from Alexandre Dumont. I modified them slightly, and I may document the whole process on a friend's wiki later.
Cacti Screenshot

Check out the finished product here, this is Cacti on my home network

EX442 Systems Monitoring and Performance Tuning

I got another Red Hat Certificate of Expertise. Here is the course outline so you can see material covered by the course/exam RH442 outline. Now I only need to pass the EX333 Red Hat Enterprise Security: Network Services to get my RHCA! I've taken (and failed) the EX333 before but on the plus side I know what to expect, so next time I will prepare properly and I feel confident I can pass it. I'm signed up for the RHS333/EX333 in November..

Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist

So last week I took the Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization training and exam (RH318/EX318) and am now a Red Hat Certified Virtualization Administrator. With that plus the EX401 Satellite exam and the EX436 Cluster exam which I already have I am now a Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist. Pretty excited.. :-D

Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist


RH401 Satellite certificate of expertise

Almost a year ago I passed my first RHCA level certificate on clustering and storage. This week I took the RH401 Red Hat Enterprise Deployment, Virtualization, and Systems Management aka RHN Satellite and Xen Hopefully the next one I get won't be a year later. Here is the certificate of expertise..

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="Red Hat Certificate of expertise EX401"]Red Hat Certificate of expertise EX401[/caption]

rpm fun

The more I learn about RPM the more I like it. I think it's one of those things where even if you can't be sure it's the best, just the fact that you know more about it than other comparable alternatives makes it the best. That's not giving enough credit to RPM.. I'm just not here to argue about which package type is the best. Anyway I am studying how to build RPMS in preparation for taking the RH401/EX401 this week. Yesterday I created an rpm, GPG signed it, rhnpushed rpm to satellite, created custom satellite channel, subscribed client to channel and installed rpm.

Today I just ran through recreating that rpm from scratch again (no looking at the book) this includes writing the spec file. Oh, and this is after the instructor tells me today that emacs has a built in template for a spec file.. This template is something I had been searching for before I memorized all this stuff. oh well.

Here is my latest rpm

[john@localhost i386]$ rpm -qip antiword-0.37-.awesome.i386.rpm
Name        : antiword                     Relocations: (not relocatable)
Version     : 0.37                              Vendor: JOHN BRIER YELLING
Release     : .awesome                      Build Date: Mon 04 Jan 2010 11:19:58 PM EST
Install Date: (not installed)               Build Host: localhost.localdomain
Group       : Applications/Text             Source RPM: antiword-0.37-.awesome.src.rpm
Size        : 221844                           License: GPL
Signature   : (none)
Packager    : Totally Awesome
URL         :
Summary     : Antiword is a free MS Word reader for Linux and RISC OS.
Description :
Antiword converts the binary files from Word 2, 6, 7, 97, 2000, 2002 and 2003 to plain text and to PostScript TM.

How to resize images in batch using ImageMagick and bash

I have taken a lot of pictures while I have been in Australia. In order to save time and bandwidth when I upload them to my site I have been resizing them to 800x600 from their normal 2536x1536 resolution. This reduces size per image from 1.4 MB to ~200 KB.

To do this if your images are in ~/Pictures and you want to put the resized images in ~/Pictures/resized you can use a simple for loop like the following with the 'convert' command from the ImageMagick suite

Assuming you are already in ~/Pictures/ run the following:

for i in `ls *.jpg | xargs`; do convert $i -resize 800x600 ~/Pictures/resized/$i-resized.jpg; done;

If your original file was named original.jpg it will now be named original.jpg-resized.jpg

There is probably a way to make that output file name cleaner but I haven't looked into it yet.

iwl4965: Radio Frequency Kill Switch is On

I just struggled to get wireless working again after a reload of Debian Lenny 5.0 after testing Fedora 11 beta on my Asus U3S laptop. I noticed these messages in dmesg output:

[ 731.855177] iwl4965: Radio Frequency Kill Switch is On:
[  731.855177] Kill switch must be turned off for wireless networking to work.
[  780.507448] iwl4965: Error sending REPLY_STATISTICS_CMD: enqueue_hcmd failed: -5
[  893.786560] iwl4965: Radio Frequency Kill Switch is On:
[  893.786560] Kill switch must be turned off for wireless networking to work.
[  893.793209] iwl4965: WARNING: Requesting MAC access during RFKILL wakes up NIC
[ 1005.863767] iwl4965: Radio disabled by HW RF Kill switch

okay seems pretty straight forward right? There is a bluetooth on/off switch on the left side of the U3S which only controls bluetooth even though it has the bluetooth symbol and wifi symbol on it. As it turns out I had been messing with the function keys on my laptop the night before. I actually had to pull out the manual and look at the section on switches and function keys before I realized I had probably inadvertantly turned off the wireless when playing with the function keys on Fedora 11 beta the night before. So now I realized FN + F2 would toggle the wireless RF.. However when I did this it would turn on the wireless light indicator for just a short bit.. a fraction of a second. I got it to stay on for a few seconds one time.

After messing with a bunch of stuff I wondered if the asus laptop specific modules loaded to support the specific features of my laptop (function keys in particular) might have something to do with this issue.

# lsmod | grep asus
asus_acpi 13852 0

so I removed that module
# modprobe asus_acpi -r
hit the FN + F2 and it stayed on and restarted network manager and i can get on wireless. I reloaded the module afterward and wireless kept working. I'm honestly not sure what exactly is going on but that fixed it. Normally the kernel module asus-laptop would be loaded as well but it wasn't. This might be part of the problem. Either way I hope this helps someone.

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