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Switching from nVidia to Intel video cards with Ubuntu

A flurry of posts tonight it seems. But, I want to get down all the "gotcha's" I've been having fun with in setting up the new desktop and server.

Quick background. I pulled the hard drive from my old desktop computer and installed in my new desktop computer. You can read my previous posts to see what I did with the server.

Re-mapping a network device to eth0

With Linux we can easily clone an installation, or move hard drive between different systems. The hardware changes normally don't make much of a difference. BUT, with modern Ubuntu systems - and other distro's I'm sure - the network card can cause a problem. This comes up with virtual machines (with VMWare, Xen, KVM, etc.) when a copy of an existing guest install is used to create a new virtual machine.

The results of these changes normally show up as an error something like this:

SIOCSIFADDR: No such device eth0

New Server Details

I upgraded my server. Phew, it's done.

A quick run-down on the new digs, and the process I went through to get things operational:

  • Hardware - the new server is running an AMD X2-6000 CPU with 8 GB of RAM. Should be plenty for the volumes we see here.

Welcome to the new server.

Like the new coat of paint? Yep, the new server is up and running and I thought I would commemorate with a new theme for the site. As a matter of fact, the site received a fair bit of long needed attention.

First was a manual migration of EVERY blog posting I've made since the start of Grover Ponders. I could have saved a lot of time and effort if I just copied the site over as is, but this was a perfect opportunity to take care of a few things that have been nagging at me.

SSH Keys don't work with an encrypted home directory

I'm working on my new server installation. I'm installing to a hard drive connected to my laptop via a USB adapter. The intent is to move that drive to my server case once the install is complete and at a point where I can do a more or less seamless swap of drives. But, the laptop keyboard is annoying for long use, and the monitor is too small. So I did the core install and then enabled SSH. This way I can run a terminal window in the corner of my desktop and multi-task.

Server problems?

I have just received a kind email from the UK expressing thanks for a few of my articles. But this particular visitor went the extra mile and let me know that when registering an account for this site, the details are not getting mailed out properly. This was news to me, though in retrospect I think the problem would have started when I moved my mail server to a new host. Thanks and props to this visitor for taking the time to a) identify the problem, and b) take the time to track me down regardless, with both their thanks and the trouble notice!

Remote file access

One of the challenges I face on an almost continuous basis is accessing my data files both locally, and while I'm on the road. I occasionally switch from my desktop to my laptop while still in the office, and then need a file on my desktop. And then I'll be out of the office and need access to a file sitting on my desktop. There are a number of ways to solve this common issue, but I think the best choice is to make use of network storage and then use networking techniques to map that storage to appear as a local drive.

Exaile gave me back my music

I prefer to use KDE for my desktop environment. One of the nice tools included with KDE was Amarok. Version 1.4.x of Amarok was great - it did most of what I wanted. Then when KDE switched to it's 4.x versions and began taking advantage of the QT version 4 capabilities, Amarok was a little slow to keep up. A short while later the Amarok team introduced version 2.x of the player. And promptly irritated a large number of the users.

Migrate data into PostgreSQL and maintain existing primary key

Once in a while, I need to migrate data from one database to another. One of the problems doing this is the auto incrementing ID values. There are a few ways to do this, but each has it's own set of issues.

A note to my friends on Facebook - this is a TECHNICAL posting, if you are not a programmer, database administrator, or system administrator, you probably won't understand or care... :)

jQuery Multiselect list plugin

We've all seen the usual HTML select lists. Something that looks like this:

This is ok, but looks clunky and gets to be annoying if you do not know about holding down the CTRL key to do multiple selections. More importantly, you can never list anything other than text - you can't add helpful icons or more elaborate HTML elements if needed. Instead you're left rolling your own solution.

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