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03 June 2005

Mailserver-Spiele der Cablecom

Doch wohl Zeit für einen Smarthost

Nachdem betabug.ch seit ewigen Zeiten die eigenen Mails direkt an die Mailserver der Empfänger verschickt hat, sieht es jetzt so aus, als ob ich doch noch einen "Smarthost" einrichten müsste, das heisst die Mails ultimativ über den Webserver meines Providers verschicken sollte. Heute habe ich (seit langer Zeit mal wieder) ein Mail über die PimpsNhosis-Mailingliste geschickt. Dabei habe ich dann eine hübsche Fehlermeldung erhalten.

Grund: Einige der Leute auf der Liste sind bei der CableCom/hispeed und haben auch eine Mailadresse dort (hey Eva!). Und deren Mailserver verwendet eine Blacklist, die betabug.ch sperrt, weil ich keine "richtige", fixe IP-Adresse habe. CableCom-Admins sind Idioten deren eigene User genug SPAM verschickt haben. Jetzt wollen sie das SPAM-Problem lösen indem sie anderen Vorschriften machen. Die glauben wohl nicht ernsthaft, dass über meinen gepflegten Sendmail jemand SPAM verschickt oder auf mein OpenBSD Viren drauflädt? Da werden einfach alle über einen Kamm geschert und eine Möglichkeit zur Austragung aus der Blacklist gibt es nicht. Was solls.

Vielleicht schaffe ich die Umstellung übers Wochenende, obwohl am Sonntag der "2005 Athens Fun Run" auf meinem Programm steht. Bis dann bekommt die liebe Eva wohl leider keine PimpsNhosis-Mails, sorry. Ausserdem muss ich erst mal wieder ins "Bat Book" schauen, habe schon länger nicht mehr an Sendmail gewerkelt.

Posted by betabug at 17:31 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
07 June 2005

Another Big Shift at Apple

I didn't want to mention it, but is Intel now going to put up "Switcher" adds?

When topgan1 wrote about Apple going to use Intel processors yesterday, I just hoped so much that he was going to be proofed wrong. Looks like it is real. I double checked the calender, today is not April 1st. So Apple will indeed phase out PowerPC processors for Intels processors until 2007. I don't like that.

If there is anybody who can pull such a stunt, it is Apple. They already did something similar twice. But still I don't like it any better. Ofcoz the usual crowd of Steve-Jobs-reality-distorted Apple followers without a clue (the ones like that guy from Rainbow who said that Unix is a programming language) will applaud this U-Turn. Yesterday you told us that the Ghz race was all a lie? Today you tell us that PowerPC is not keeping up in the Ghz race and that's why we have to switch over, no problem. I felt pretty gloomy yesterday, thought about getting out of IT again. Why didn't I pick up that job as a shepherd on Limnos? But let me tell you my reasons for not liking this decision.

  • Competing with cheap hardware will not make Apples hardware any better, because customers won't see the difference and demand everything cheaper and cheaper. Quality will go down the gully.
  • Producing yet another two class society in the user base. No, we don't have that tool for your old PowerPC any more, buy new hardware.
  • Customers don't think logical when buying a puter. They believe they have to choose a machine to last forever. If you think logical that you will ditch that puter in a few years anyway, it may make sense to buy another PowerPC now. But if you want it to last forever, you will be put into a mental deadlock on what to buy. How many will just avoid that dilemma by buying PC?
  • Having to look at all the newspeak/doublethink PR that will follow this. Yesterday we told you..., today we tell you...
  • i386 Processors are just so boring. Fsck, Alpha is no more, MIPS is inexistant, will there be only Intel and Sparc? Not everybody wants to think in little grey boxes.
  • Producing new versions of programs is just a recompile? Except I will need access to another machine for testing. No problem for Adobe, but what about the little people, the devs who do shareware/freeware?

I could go on, but I won't. I didn't want to write about this at all, but the weblogs around me did not seem to have any reactions (except for topgan1), so I felt like I had to. BTW, what's next? Will Intel put up "Switcher" adds now? Welcome to the club of "everybody is equal"? Damned, I don't care about my computers being 20% faster, I care about my computers being inspiring.


Posted by betabug at 09:22 | Comments (1) | Trackbacks (0)
09 June 2005

Now, if sendmail isn't easy

That's what I call a smart host

As reported (in German) about my trouble with Cablecom in Switzerland, I am switching my sendmail to using a smarthost setup, which will route outgoing mail through my provider. It's kind of sad and a defeat for the free Internet, but what gives?

Sendmail configuration is often rumoured to be hard. I've already played around with it some times and I've read the bat book (the sendmail book from O'Reilly) a couple of times. Plus I had already grokked the concept of smarthost. So it was pretty easy. To my well kept m4 configuration file I just added one line:

define(`SMART_HOST', `smtp:mail.tbwil.ch')dnl

Then I regenerated the cf file with

make conffilename.cf
copyed the resulting file to /etc/mail/ (where it is linked to become sendmail.cf) and then I restarted sendmail:
kill -HUP `head -1 /var/run/sendmail.pid`
A few checks confirmed that mail is indeed flowing. So, after all, sendmail is easy.


Posted by betabug at 17:15 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
15 June 2005

Greek Localization for 10.4 is Available

Greek Mac OS X without selling your soul

As mentioned at HelMUG, GR-X the unofficial, free and working localization of Mac OS X is available for 10.4 too. Download GR-X here for free from MacUpdate.

This is not the Greek localization from the "official" Apple Macintosh reseller in Greece (IMC) Rainbow SA. GRupdate, the patch from Rainbow is out for 10.4 too, but the problems are even worse then they were with Panther. GRUpdate for Tiger is definitely not recommended, even if you can get it (it's only available if you bought your Mac from Rainbow). If you want Greek menus and dialogs, get GR-X, if you only want to read and write Greek, use Cocoa applications and everything just works.


Posted by betabug at 09:19 | Comments (1) | Trackbacks (0)
17 June 2005

My Connection Sucks^W Drops Too

But I'm taking control of the command line through screen(1)

Yesterday on irc (...sounds like one of those stories...) on #zope I talked to someone who goes by the nick "swissmade" and who was connected through a satellite link. He would come in again and again and ask the same question. When we finally got the answer through to him, he apologized by mentioning that output was often garbled due to the sat link. I recommended a shell account on a well connected server (freeshell.org shell accounts come to mind, though not with a "free" account, rather one of the paying kind which lets you use background processes after you log out). Together with that, take the "screen" utility and irssi with bitlbee for irc and AIM/ICQ/MSN etc.

I had discovered screen some years ago in an article on daemonnews, the bsd news zine. The article stuck in my mind, as if it was yesterday. It was about a guy who lived in some rural area and through the crappy phone lines he often could get only about a 26kbps dial up connection. And lots of disconnects. Sounds like Greece to me. He solved his disconnect problems using screen - he would still get disconnected, but when he dialled in again, he could resume his session right where he left off. All it needs is a quick

screen -dr
and you get your session exactly where you left it, down to the key you pressed in the middle of a word when the line went down. I relied on this, last summer on Limnos island, when I was getting on the internet through GPRS. Most of the time I just picked up my mail with IMAPS (hey, bandwidth is expensive with GPRS), but sometimes I would take control of my server through my neverending screen session. There are quite a few tutorials about screen(1) around, so when I was hunting for that old article I found a lot of them.


Posted by betabug at 09:10 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
19 June 2005

iPod thoughts

Now that I have had it for a while

Now that iPods are finally taking off in Greece, the kid who does the gopher job at my workplace asked me what iPod to buy. There is a much wider range of models now, compared to about 1.5 years ago, when I bought Generation 3 iPod with 10Gig. A wider range means more chance to get exactly what you need, but possible harder to decide. For myself, my iPod has turned out a good buy...


Continue reading "iPod thoughts"
Posted by betabug at 12:20 | Comments (1) | Trackbacks (0)
23 June 2005

curl on Mac OS X 10.3 "failed assertion" problem and fix

Download with --limit-rate on 10.3 fails
 

Had to download 12 pdf files with sizes of about 30mb each. Wanted to use curl to limit the bandwidth. But it looks like the curl shipped with Mac OS X 10.3 has a problem, giving an error message of 'poll.c:282: failed assertion `pArray != (struct pollfd *) NULL'. Solution: Searched for the error message and found that I need a new version of curl from http://curl.haxx.se/download.html, which has curl 7.14.0 binaries for OSX available via link.

After that I was able to do:

curl --limit-rate 100k \
--location -c cookiejar -b cookiejar \
"http://www.thedomain.gr/directory/\
index.php?dir=&file={4-17PRINT,6-15PRINT,8-13,OTHERNAMES,...}" \
-o "#1.pdf"
and download the files without clogging all our bandwidth. The --location -c cookiejar and -b cookiejar parameters are there because at first I suspected there to be some kind of redirect and cookie thing happening.


Posted by betabug at 11:10 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)

zope haikus

Poetry in software or what?

23.6.2005 on #zope:
< __mac__> woodt: you are on a cut/paste action when a manage_afterAdd is
                 called after a manage_beforeDelete
< __mac__> so you have to remeber in manage_beforeDelete that there might
                 come a manage_afterAdd after that
< betabug> that just sounds so philosophical
<@TheJester> Very Zen.
< betabug> so beforeDelete
< betabug> winter may go spring again
< betabug> manage_afterAdd
< betabug> 5-7-5, season reference -> complete haiku
<@TheJester> depends if you pronounce the underscore or not d8)
< betabug> definitely not, I never do (honest, not just in zope haikus)
< betabug> but changing the first line to "think beforeDelete" would be
          an improvement, though violatiing the "spirit of the moment"
...
<@TheJester> call beforeDelete / remembering spring may call /
                   manage_afterAdd
So, this sounds really nice to me:

So beforeDelete
winter may go spring again
manage_afterAdd
-- betabug 23.6.2005

Or, if you like TheJester's version better:

call beforeDelete
remembering spring may call
manage_afterAdd
-- TheJester 23.6.2005
Which in my oppinion floats nicer from line to line. Also makes more sense in a zopeish way.

Comments? Additions? Flames?


Posted by betabug at 14:36 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)