Late night rambles.

Staying up later than I usually manage. I'm tired, but I'm jittery. So I'm futzing around, realized there was a work server that alerted last night due to low space during a backup, then recovered...but I didn't want to get texted in the night, so I threw a bunch of space at it. (New backup routine, and I haven't quite figured out how much space it will need, darn needy databases). I'm also upgrading a home VM to the latest Ubuntu server available, because I am a nerd.

To be honest, I don't want to go to sleep. Last night's anxiety dreams were very unpleasant, even though I don't remember details. So I'm avoiding sleep. Eventually I'll crash, but not for a while. I have plans for tomorrow (finally going to see the new Godzilla flick), but there's no time frame...so hopefully I can just sleep in once I crash. We'll see.

But for now, more comfort soup, some silly TV, and geekery. Then book and bed and hopefully dreams of tentacles and Caroline Munro ;)

Carcosa Corp 2.0

Been at the new office a week. And I am of mixed opinions. It's a nice building, nice office space. My cube is fairly big, and while it doesn't have full height walls, it's still fairly private. Sadly, voices carry, so I hear the neighbors (a bunch of devs I don't know) more than I'd like. It's also overly warm IMHO, I guess the powers that be that control the thermostat are lizard people. My fellow IT folks are nearby, fellow admin is across the row, and the desktop guy is one row over and further back. I'm at the front of my row, so people walk by me all day, which is distracting as I see movement, and look up. Guess I need to slouch a bit more so I don't see them. There's a bunch of restaurants near by, and a good Half Price Books. I also got to meet one of the execs I've dealt with a lot the last few months, got some chitchat in. The people I know are on the other side of the big office area I'm in, but between walkups and IM clients we're still in constant contact. Which is mostly good. We'll see how it works over time.

Brought my craptop over, and my triple monitor setup on a dock. Network is a little slower, especially if I'm doing things on the datacenter network, a few more hops than there was when I was a few floors overhead. Today I setup a test 'developer machine' in my cube. Our devops guy wanted a system he could test from in the new office, vs his own box back in the datacenter. Dell Optiplex, running Fedora (was 28, but I upgraded to 30 today). In theory it's going to just sit in my cube if anyone needs to see what's up with the developer network, in practice if I end up working in the office a good deal, I'll move it so it's the primary box and just not 'tell anyone'. (32 gigs of RAM and not Windows would make up for a lot of the commute.) We'll see. I did manage to name it 'hyades', our test dev boxes are named after constellations, and well, a star cluster is just a constellation mushed together. The devops guy is a Lovecraft fan (one of my converts), and I think he got the joke. At some point this weekend I'll log in from home, and push some scripts and files over to it. (Via VPN, no we're not insane). Not much in the way of decorations in the new cube, since I'm probably going to work remote more often than not, it's probably for the best.

Now, the big problem of the moment. The commute sucks. Morning isn't so bad, if I leave at 8:30, I'll be there at 9:00, assuming traffic doesn't snarl. But coming home is pretty crappy from 4pm til after 6pm. And it's the drive home that I really appreciated the 10 minute commute. But in 6 months or so, in theory we'll be done with the datacenter. And I'll be ready to move, so the pseudo-plan is to move north, assuming working from home 4 days out of 5 works for me. Which it should, unless I end up feeling too hermited. I really don't know, as is often I can see both sides. Next week I'll be about half and half, and we'll see what works from there.

So, it's more or less alright. Some things are better, some things are not. I'm just going to keep on going, adjust things and see how it goes. On that note though, it's time for this fox to head to book and bed. Night all.

Say Hello to Byatis

I replaced my media player system with a new computer. Shoggoth has worked pretty well over the last few years, but it's been struggling more and more with larger files/bluray encoded files. Since it's a Intel Celeron 1.5 ghz CPU, it's not surprising. So a couple of weeks ago, Woot.com had a deal on a Lenovo M93P Tiny Desktop. Dual core Intel i5, 8 gigs of RAM, and a 128g SSD. So faster drive and a lot more CPU. (same RAM, but I can add another 8 gig stick if needed). So I finally felt up to moving hardware around today. Got everything wired up, well other than using a wireless keyboard and mouse to talk to Byatis. Installed Ubuntu MATE 18.10 (yes the same version I had headaches with upgrading Dagon. But a media system has a lot less moving parts, and other than a couple of goofs requiring a reinstall, the install went smooth. Setup the usual things, big thing was to get VLC installed and tested. There's a few quirks with controlling VLC, but nothing I can't adapt to. Or I can find something to tweak to make it simpler. We'll see.

So here you go, the building of my new media server, Byatis. Oh, if you don't recognize the name, Wikipedia has you covered.

Week from Sheol

Oh elder gods and little fishies, this week has been crazy. All work foo. One, my fellow admin at Carcosa Corp was traveling for business, so 4 of the 5 days I was the lone admin. And it's patch week. And I had a large chunk of a project scheduled to go into production as of last night, with a process that i wasn't 100% comfortable with. Plus the usual daily foo. It's been rough. I haven't been sleeping solid, and I'm dragging today.

But work was pretty calm for normal sysadmin foo, my usual having to herd cats to get things scheduled for patching. And last night's big change went well. While it involved things I don't know well, databases and applications that run under Java, along with Microsoft Active Directory for the trifecta of eww, I made it all work, and I got things working faster than I estimated. So all would have been well if I'd gotten a full night's sleep. So of course I didn't. *eyeroll* At least I'm more comfortable with the whole process, now to just work out the 3rd magic step that has baffled the software vendor's support. Which I just had a small lightbulb moment about. Excuse me while I email myself.

*time passes*

Ok, note to future me sent. Will argue with it later this weekend, or Monday AM. Yay aha moments.

And with that, I think I'll end this post. Probably will be heading to bed and book early tonight. Hopefully I can get some real rest over the weekend. Night all.

Weekend Computer Foo

And now we talk about computer foo. last night and today has been more geekery than I've done in a while. Dagon's new monitor is much of the shiny. I've switched to using multiple virtual desktops, scattering various apps that I can reach with with key combos. Here are the desktops and what they're used for.

  • Primus: Web browser and terminal windows, with Alpine (mail), CenterIM5 (IM client), one terminal with a screen session linked to every VM and physical box here at Château Innsmouth, and one for text editing (like this entry).
  • Secondus: Five larger terminal windows in a pattern. Good for sysadmin or coding or stuff. Larger = less eye strain.
  • Teritus: VirtualBox and VMs. This is the problem child, as I start working on a desktop VM, and forget about it with flipping back and forth.
  • Quartus: Misc stuff.

    As I said, it's easy to lose stuff in this setup, but I'm thinking I'll get used to it over time. The new video card in Dagon can support 2 of the big monitors, and I can double up on those cards, so I could upgrade to a 3 monitor rig in the future. Also, Hydra has DP ports as well, so I could split it, 2 on Dagon, 1 on Hydra. Doubt I'll do that anytime soon though, both for cost and the fact the Desk of Doom (tm) isn't sturdy or large enough. So, in the future. Maybe after I pay off the trip to Portland.

    Besides getting things updated and rebooted all the systems. Tried to upgrade Dagon to the latest stable kernel, but no dice, I couldn't make the new monitor play nice, and after 3 or 4 reboots and driver swaps I gave up for now. Hydra and Nyogtha came up fine after general maintenance and reboots, so did the VMs. I then turned my attention to my mini server Shoggoth, which has been offline for a week or so. On advice from my IT guy (yes I have a friend that does most of my hardware foo. I can do it soso, or he can do it right, and he's worth every cent. If you're in DFW, and need a geek, let me know) I popped out the drive, tried to see if it would get past the weird lock. It did. So I put the drive back in, and it booted fine. So I updated it, rebooted, came up fine. So, thinking the SSHD drive in Shoggoth might be flaking, I enabled SMARTD to monitor the drive. So we'll see if it was a fluke or a drive giving up the ghost.

    Now I'm updating the assorted desktop VMs, and fiddling around with other stuff. Been a productive day geekwise. But soon it will be time to wind down and head to bed.
  • Moving Day

    It's Saturday, and it's the day I swap workstations. So of course I'm stalling. Running backups and syncs before I make the swap. Queued up a bunch of movies on Nyogtha for while this is going. Wild times for Château Innsmouth. I'll be back on later to either cheer or whine. *waves a tentacle*

    Dagon 2.0

    New Dagon is here, Ubuntu-Mate 16.04 beta is installed and I'm setting up all the softwares. Good to have a computer delivered to you by your IT expert. *grin*

    The stats are as follows
  • AMD FX(tm)-4130, 3.8 GHZ quad core CPU
  • 16 gigs of PC3-12800 RAM
  • Samsung 850 EVO 250GB SSD
  • Seagate 6TB sata drive
  • NVidia: GT610 video card
  • LG DVD-RW drive
  • Snazzy green case.

    So yeah, I'm happy. I have snazzy computer, I have SSD epic boot time, and it does all the things so far. *happy dance* More babbling later probably. Ciao.
  • Computer Foo

    Ugg, computer foo. Rebooted the 3 linux only boxes here at Château Innsmouth, Hydra (secondary workstation) and Nyogtha (media player/ fileserver) booted fine. Dagon however decided it rather be dead and dreaming, or at least stick on boot. Finally got things working, not sure if it was just giving it a break while I went to get mail, or turning off the usb array. But Dagon finally booted up. *thud* I don't need this stressor now. I have some vague plans to use Cthylla to replace Dagon, but I rather wait til it's a planned and tested (and I have money to do it all). So I'll probably avoid rebooting Dagon unless I have to. *sigh*

    Oh well, eventually I'll be able to upgrade Cthylla to the specs I want to use to replace Dagon's current bits, and I'll swap over. Actually, I probably could swap over now if I cannibalized Dagon, but I don't want to do it that way. I rather have a soft swap over than a hard. Oh well, one of these lifetimes.