Archive for the ‘Hardware’ Category

Commodore Amiga 2000

Whoa, this is like taking a trip in a time machine! For whatever reason, TechRepublic decided to do a teardown of the beloved Amiga 2000. I had an A2000 that I simply adored. It was one of my favorite computers from back in the day. Huge case that would take a bite out of you if you got too close. Lotsa space, lotsa expansion slots, lotsa floppy drives (okay, only two, but seriously!).

Anyway, this one is here for nostalgia.

Commodore Amiga 2000
In 1986-87, Commodore released the Amiga 2000. The machine was technically similar to the Amiga 500, but had a larger case and was designed to be more expandable.

via Commodore Amiga 2000 | TechRepublic.

I won’t be doing that again, or “Partition Fail!”

I got a brand-spanking-new 1tb external drive (Western Digital MyBook) for archival, and I decided it would be a good time to redo my partitioning scheme on my current Linux Mint machine. I have two drives in that box, a 160gb (sdb) and 320gb (sda). For some reason, I had sliced and diced them partition-wise: sda had a total of 5 partitions, sdb had 6. most of the partitions were in small chunks, between 40 and 80gb, but there were a couple of smaller ones (15gb and 20gb). This resulted in me constantly running out of space in one of the partitions, then trying to shuffle data between other partitions. (I was too impatient to set up LVM. )

So I came up with my plan: copy the contents of each partition to a directory on the MyBook, then use gparted to combine all of the partitions on each disk. It would be a simple process: copy all data to the MyBook, unmount the current directory, create a symlink to the corresponding directory on the MyBook, then use gparted to nuke the corresponding partition. Simple and straight-forward.

My issue, hwoever, was that I didn’t stop to consider what the ramifications of unmounting part of a filesystem could have. I had no problem moving /home. And I actually had no problems copying /usr onto the MyBook. But then I made the mistake. And learned my lesson:

Never umount /usr if you are not logged in as root! Doing a “sudo umount /usr” worked perfect, of course. However, since sudo is in /usr/bin, and since I had just umounted /usr, there was no way to do a “sudo ln -s /media/mybook/usr /usr”. Or sudo. anything else, including mount. In short, I was hosed!

The easy fix, of course, would be to reboot and let the system re-mount /usr. Except that I had already removed the reference to that partition in /etc/fstab, and since sudo didn’t exist anymore, I couldn’t re-edit /etc/fstab.

With rebooting out, the next solution would be booting off of a recovery CD. The problem with that is I was not at home; I was making these changes remotely. Yeah, that was quite stupid of me; I won’t be doing that again!

I spent a couple hours last night trying to fix everything. I booted off a GPartEd Live CD, and then finished copying files from the various partitions to the MyBook. I then nuked all of the partitions off sda and created one nice, big partition. I’ll be mounting that as /data, and making symlinks where necessary. I also deleted all of the partitions off of sdb except for the root partition. I made this bigger (figured I won’t come close to 50gb anytime soon), then made the rest of the drive a big partition, too.

Of course, I am still running from the gparted CD. I need to copy everything back onto the new partitions. I am also decomissioning a file server, so I’ll be adding another 320gb drive to the system (all as one big partition). That’ll put my Linux Mint box at around 800gb of internal storage plus 1tb external. I think that might handle my needs for a while.

Assuming I don’t break anything else, of course.

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Wider is not necessarily better…

I tried upgrading to a new widescreen monitor. It was a 20″ widescreen monitor from Dell that receives decent reviews and has decent specs. But my current, standard aspect monitor is much bigger and nicer than I remembered. It’s a 21″ monitor, and it has a lot of niceties, such as a built-in USB 2.0 hub and a super-adjustable base. After using the widescreen for a while, I realized that the 1680×1050 resolution is not as good as the 1600×1200 that I normally run my current monitor in. Adding everything up, I realized that I wanted to stay with the monitor I have, so I gave my wife the widescreen monitor.

Eventually, I may try widescreen again. Once there’s an aspect ratio around 1900×1200 or so.

Profile picI am a 40-ish uber-geek, Daoist and family man. Blessed to have one incredible wife and three wonderful kiddos. Dao has been kind to me.

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