Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ubuntu and broken or missing aufs with default kernels

Aufs included in Ubuntu kernels is broken, what a surprise. In addition it has been dropped from newer kernels with claims that overlayfs does exactly same thing. It doesn't and everyone knows it except that one developer who decided it does and can't admit he made mistake. It seems aufs (and overlayfs) in Ubuntu is not really supposed to be used but only be part of install process. If so you guys shouldn't include it outside installer.. WontFix you too.

USB keyboard doesn't work during initramfs with Ubuntu 12.04 / 12.10 / 13.04 after upgrading kernel

Add "ohci-pci" to /etc/initramfs-tools/modules and run "update-initramfs -c -k all". This problem occurs because unlike other USB drivers ohci-pci is compiled as module.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Updating Seagate ST3000DM001-9YN166 to CC4H firmware while in external USB 3.0 enclosure

Some time ago I purchased external 3TB USB 3.0 hard disks, TrekStor DataStation maxi light 3TB to be exact. It seem disk models and manufactures used by TrekStor vary, which is no surprise. Therefore I have externally identical disk enclosures with three different models of disks due making three separate purchases over few months.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Enable TRIM for SSD with ext4, dmcrypt and md

Depending on why you're encrypting your SSDs it might be acceptable to enable TRIM (aka discard). With this configuration observing raw content on SSDs will reveal which blocks are used and which aren't. Doesn't matter for me, but might not be same for you.

Ubuntu Server 12.04.3 / 12.10 / 13.04 / 13.10 with encrypted md mirrored rootfs and remote ssh unlock

My original plan was to boot from ZFS, but combining it with encryption and especially with mirrored disks turned out to be too troublesome. Yes, I did get it working and booting, but resulting configuration required manual fixing each time new kernel was installed. And don't even think about doing upgrade to next Ubuntu version.

Turning Dell PERC H310 to dumb biosless SAS / SATA controller

After realizing that LSI SAS1078 based controller wouldn't do what I want I ended up purchasing card from eBay, 65€ including shipping for unused, new in box Dell PERC H310. Prices are bit higher than I like, but this was acceptable knowing it will do exactly what I need. Despite trying hard card will still show up as DELL after making these changes but it's in IT-mode and accepts generic LSI firmware.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

USB booting on VMware Workstation 9 and 10

While VMware Workstation supports passthru of USB storage devices BIOS used for virtual machines is not USB boot capable.

As a workaround download Plop Boot Manager, extract plpbt.iso, mount it as CD on your VM, boot from CD and then select boot from USB. Blah. Spinning media is so yesterday.


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Reflashing LSI MegaRAID SAS 8708ELP (SAS1078)

I wanted to use Fujitsu OEM (D2516, "LSI Logic MegaRAID SAS PCI Express(TM) ROMB") of LSI MegaRAID 8708ELP in JBOD mode, which apparently is not possible. Out of MegaRAID products only 9240-4i and 9240-8i support true JBOD. Also 9260 and 9280 series can apparently do it via MegaCLI which is another beast to master. Rest of models can only do single disk RAID0 which isn't the same thing.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

80GB Intel X25-M G2 SSD and Secure Erase

For whatever reason after updating my Intel X25-M G2 SSD to latest firmware (dated 2011) option to do secure erase disappeared. Yes, I know all about tricks of hot plugging disks etc. Secure erasing another identical X25-M G2 on same PC visible as /dev/sdb works fine. One with latest firmware simply no longer supports it which is also confirmed by hdparm -I.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Execute BGInfo when IP address changes

Updates IP on your BGInfo managed desktop background image when new network connection is detected. Notices also Cisco AnyConnect VPN connections. Import XML file with SchTasks.exe.