Set up a bluetooth keyboard in Debian Etch

I recently purchased a new Apple Wireless Bluetooth Keyboard for use with MythTV. The choice of input device for MythTV is a very subjective thing to be sure, but I love this device because its as small as it can be without feeling cramped, its thin, light weight, and stylish.

Setting the device up to work with Debian Etch is fairly straightforward once you know what to do

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Coraid Odyssey: Part 5 (AoE vs iSCSI)

The next phase of this project is choosing AoE or iSCSI. The debate on the relative merits of each protocol continues to rage on the Internet but in my particular case the criteria are pretty simple; which one performs better without causing excessive system load? Just from reading about the two protocols I am already leaning toward iSCSI for the simple fact that I can use all my TCP/IP management tools (routing, NAT, firewalling, etc.) on every iSCSI device. The only (potential) drawback is CPU load on the involved systems since it has to calculate TCP checksums for all those packets. Yes, there are many, many other advantages of one protocol over the other. No, they don’t matter to me in this scenario :-) So here we go!

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Coraid Odyssey: Part 1 (building the chassis)

AoE (ATA over Ethernet) and iSCSI are the hot new things. Xen is the hot new thing. I like using hot new things as long as they can be made rock solid.

There happens to be a company (Coraid) that makes a turnkey AoE device. Its far cheaper than a true fibre channel SAN or something similar. Perfect for setting up a SAN over Ethernet device that can serve Xen domU filesystems out to “thin” dom0’s on the network.

Well that’s all well and good but you see I’m always looking to save a buck…

Continue reading Coraid Odyssey: Part 1 (building the chassis)

DIY silent hard drive mounting

I recently upgraded my lowly socket 939 workstation to a mini-itx motherboard with a socket AM2 dual core CPU and integrated GPU. I’ve always tried to minimize noise in my workstations since I have a great pair of Grado SR60 headphones and extraneous noise bothers me.

Now that the noisy GPU cooling fan is gone (yay!) I’ve begun to notice the noise that my dual SATA hard drives generate. I got sufficiently motivated last night to figure out a way to silence them. What I came up with was a “hard drive suspension mechanism” of sorts that cost, oh, probably about $0.13. Best of all, the drives generate ZERO noise from vibration now.

Click here to see some pics. My wife’s laptop is now actually louder than my dual core workstation :-)