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by lunarg on December 28th 2007, at 21:46

Just moved the website again. This time it's not a physical move of the server, but to another server altogether. It should have a bit of better performance than the old one.
If you happen to find any bugs because of this move, please let me know.

by lunarg on December 28th 2007, at 21:46

For all nVIDIA users, I suggest installing the hotfixes recommended by nVIDIA: link.

If you have SLI, first install KB936710 (that's hotfix 2 on the nVIDIA page).

Most importantly, install KB940105 (hotfix 1).

And finally, there are KB938194 (hotfix 3), and KB938979 (hotfix 4).

by lunarg on December 28th 2007, at 17:35
This article contains some notes about the latest 7-12 ATI linux drivers. Biggest change in versions after 8.40 (aside of the new versioning scheme), is the support for Composite and AIGLX extensions, and the supposedly improved 3D performance. Unfortunately for some, support is currently limited to newer Radeon cards only.
Installation on my X700 was not entirely straight-forward, though.

Installation took place on my laptop which has a X700 on-board, but the driver only worked properly after some tweaking of xorg.conf...

Since I'm using Gentoo, installation of the latest driver was fairly simple:

ACCEPT_KEYWORDS="~amd64" emerge -u ati-drivers

At time of writing, this would in  ...
by lunarg on November 11th 2007, at 20:24
A Terminal Server can be put in two modes:

execute mode: this is the default mode. In this mode, users can log in the TS and run applications.

install mode: putting a server in this mode will notify the TS of changes in the system when installing software. This is important, because otherwise software would fail to properly get installed, and there would be all kinds of ugliness going on.

In Windows 2003, a server should automatically be put in to install mode if your installation software has setup, or install in their file name. In Windows 2000, you have to put the server in the correct mode, by installing software using Add/remove programs in the Windows control panel. Note that in Win  ...
by lunarg on November 11th 2007, at 19:46
When running Photoshop CS2 on a Windows 2003 with Terminal Server, regular users cannot start Photoshop CS2. If they try, the following error is displayed:

Quote
An error has been detected with a required application library and the product cannot continue. Please reinstall the application

However, when running with Administrator privileges, there is no problem.

CS2 requires the SeCreateGlobalPrivilege privilege. By default, regular domain users don't have this privilege, and thus, CS2 doesn't work.

Assign the required privilege to the users. Normally, assigning this privilege to trusted users should not give any security problems. I do suggest creating a new security group and assign th  ...
by lunarg on November 6th 2007, at 22:57
The trouble with PSTN lines is that the CID has to be transmitted in-band, and there are more than one standard in doing this. On top of that, there are small differences between the various Telcos on the planet. And finally, to make things worse, documentation about it, is sparse and scattered at best.

The settings displayed usually go in /etc/asterisk/zapata.conf (either directly, or by inclusion).

How CID is handled is defined by the following variables:

cidsignalling: tells how the CID signalling occurs, can be bellcore (mostly US hardware), v23, or dtmf.

cidstart: specifies how the start of the CID transmission is indicated. Can be polarity (the polarity on the wire is swit  ...
by lunarg on November 5th 2007, at 23:01
After installing Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 on a Windows 2000 Server, I got a flood of Event ID 1008 in the Application system log. These log entries complain about performance counters not being able to be properly initialized.



First, try running these two commands sequentially from an NT console:

winmgmt /clearadapwinmgmt /resyncperf

Because it didn't work for me, I worked around the issue by disabling the performance counter for the particular ASP.NET services. For this, you need to download an application of the Windows 2000 Resource Kit Tools for administrative tasks, called Extensible Performance Counter List (exctrlst.exe).

After downloading (and installing) the tool, start it  ...
by lunarg on November 5th 2007, at 22:16
Had this issue with one of my clients: he was unable to open spreadsheets from his desktop or from his Windows Explorer. Double-clicking on the file opens a new, empty Excel session, and an error message is displayed.
After a quick search on the Microsoft support site, I found a solution.

When attempting to open an Excel spreadsheet from the desktop or from Windows Explorer (or any other program), a new, empty Excel session is started, and an error message is shown:

Quote
Cannot find the file path (or one of its components). Make sure the path and filename are correct and that all required libraries are available.

or

Quote
Windows cannot find FilePathFileName, Make sure you typed the nam  ...
by lunarg on November 5th 2007, at 16:48
Got a curious error during the merge of the latest VirtualBox ebuild for Gentoo:
it fails with a die:

Quote
kmk failed

It took a bit, but looking around the output gave some indication of a problem with one or more dependencies. Looking around the Gentoo Forum, I came across this thread, which had the proper solution.

The error, more in full, is attached.
A bit more to the top of the error (sorry, but couldn't capture the right line as the new merge was already busy), it complains about Xmd.h, and GLXext.h. In that way, the solution provided by the forum thread I mentioned earlier, makes sense. In my case, issuing the following commands did the trick:

mikuru ~ # eselect opengl set xorg-  ...
by lunarg on October 21st 2007, at 22:14
One of the many anticipated games of this year, is Bioshock. It is described by its creators as new and unique experience in its genre.
It's set at the bottom of the ocean where the only way to survive is to use everything at your disposal, including genetic alteration to make your own body into a deadly weapon.

Title: Bioshock

Release date: August 2007

Developed by: 2K Games

Genre: FPS

Website: http://www.2kgames.com/bioshock/

Mid-atlantic, 1960, the airliner you're on crashes into icy waters. By luck, you managed to survive the crash, and among the wreckage you see a towering light house. Inside, you discover a rusty bathysphere, descending into Rapture, a city, built by a man with a  ...
by lunarg on October 1st 2007, at 22:06
Because of my move, I had need of a media PC system, which allowed me to watch TV, record from TV, watch DVDs, listen to music and more. Buying a pc with Windows Media Center was not an option: linux has very wonderful applications and utilities to build such a sytem.
This guide is not a real how-to, but rather the steps I took to get things running, along with descriptions and solutions to caveats and problems I encountered. Since my Media PC is still in progress of being build and configured, this guide is also a work in progress. Comments on any of the steps are, of course, very welcome.

This is a work in progress...

A PC running Gentoo, with several applications to:

Watch TV, record f  ...
by lunarg on September 30th 2007, at 21:54
Update: AMD and Microsoft have released patches to fix the TSC-drift problem. Read page 2 to find out where to get them.

The latest and newest in CPU technology is dual-core: this means having two CPUs on a single chip. Like real multi-processor (SMP), this greatly enhances processing power, among other benefits.
Unfortunately, there's a downside, called TSC-drift, causing serious trouble with certain applications and games.


random crashes: random crashes, which get worse the longer the computer is running. An application with logging usually complains about differences in "times".

sluggish performance: the performance of the application/game becomes very sluggish  ...
by lunarg on September 29th 2007, at 13:59
Last weekend was another edition of Schempp-Hirth day. Schempp-Hirth is a German builder of gliders, and for several years now, they lend us some of their machines to get a feeling of the latest innovations and a bit of the future in the gliding world...

This year's machines were most interesting, to say the least:

The DuoDiscus XL is the bigger successor of the DuoDiscus X, a flyer for two, with a wing span of a dazzling 20 meters. The XL has all the aspects of the X, but its cockpit has grown significantly in size, allowing for larger persons to fly in it as well. Several other improvements have been made for a better flying comfort.
The XL we had is currently the only glider of its type  ...
by lunarg on September 16th 2007, at 17:38
Realtek has a new gigabit chipset which is appearing on various motherboards, including the Asus M2A-VM board. At the time of writing (with kernel 2.6.22 being the default), this driver is not yet included in the default kernel tree.

Thanks to Realtek's wonderful support for linux, they have the driver source for various Unix/Linux flavours available for download on their website.

Download the driver from the official download site.

First, have your dependencies in order by having the following:

A sane build environment (contains gcc, make, etc.)

The kernel tree and/or headers of your current kernel.

Root access for installing and using the driver (of course).

Once all that is in orde  ...
by lunarg on September 11th 2007, at 17:48

As follow up on the post of a few weeks back, this little benchmark result:

http://tastic.brillig.org/~jwb/zfs-xfs-ext4.html

It clearly states what everybody is thinking: ZFS is definitely not the better one... Now that that's been said, we can get on with our lives again... ;-)

by lunarg on September 9th 2007, at 20:59
In light of my media guide (which is still under heavy development), I did a bit of experimenting with MythTV.
The result of my experiment is pretty nifty: I now have the ability to watch TV on my laptop (without a TV tuner), as long as I have a connection to my media PC (where the tuner is). Want to know more? Read on then...

As you know (or perhaps not yet), MythTV consists of two parts: a backend server (which does all the work: managing records, accessing hardware and so on), and a frontend client (basically controls the backend server, look up recordings, watch actual TV, etc.).
These two parts communicates with each other using the IP stack. While (according to the Gentoo ebuild main  ...
by lunarg on September 3rd 2007, at 22:48

Enlisted myself for a evening course of French. Since the latter is horrible, it is a very good idea, no?

Anyway, for those that are interested, can check out the website of the organizing party:

http://www.tio-cvo.be/

The website is in Dutch, but they also teach that, so it should not be a problem at all.

by lunarg on September 3rd 2007, at 22:37
Finally, it's ready: my very new, special-ordered media pc. I mainly bought it to replace my (rather noisy) old pc with it, and to have a real looking PVR thingy.
Want to see pictures? Of course you do...

Half-front-side view, along with the big, silent fans.



The rear of the case, displaying HDMI, Audigy and TV tuner, among other things.



The internals of the case, displaying the various system components, like in any other system, really.



The line up: from bottoms up, the media pc, the radio tuner and amp, the cd player, and my MP3 player's at the top.



The system will be running Gentoo Linux, with MythTV, of course. Aside of the media thingy, it will host various files and stuff  ...
by lunarg on August 28th 2007, at 12:10
Gentoo users that do regular updates, probably already ran into this issue before: Gentoo has pushed libexpat-2 to stable, effectively breaking all applications that depend upon it because of a missing library. While this is quite normal behaviour (the two versions of libexpat are not entirely compatible), it is mostly a very annoying thing, as it is not easy to find out which packages depend on it. Lucky, the Gentoo Forums provided me with a good solution.

Normally, in such a scenario, one would use revdep-rebuild to solve these issues, but, as seen on the forums, it more than occassionally results in havok on user's systems. Since I did not want to risk reinstalling my system altogether,   ...
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