New Hardware

Dear Reader,

One of the reasons for my prolonged silence on Diablog was broken hardware. No, not the server, everything is fine there. The server received plenty of updates and improvements under the hood, all installed behind the curtain, you did not notice. Except for even shorter loading times maybe.

After a mere five years my high class, high quality, expensive Thinkpad notebook by Lenovo failed. The lid/display broke at one of the hinges. The display is the most expensive part of a notebook. Replacing it usually costs almost as much as an entire new machine. Thus, I decided to replace the Thinkpad.

Granted, the machine had been used a lot, it traveled a lot, and I admit to not handling it in the most gentle way all the time. Nevertheless, I had expected twice the life time. Tough luck, all of a sudden I was in need of a new laptop.

Over the past couple of years I had decided already, that my next machine would not be a Lenovo again. Lenovo installs spyware and maleware. No thanks.  HP computers are suspected of the same, HP was out of the question too. Dell offers linux laptops, but they are not the most reliable in terms of hardware any more. Plus, they glue in hardware, like the battery. That limits the life time of the laptop to the battery life, in other words three to four years. What a stupid waste.

So I had chosen an independent supplier of high quality laptops without any operating system – aka Microsoft crap – and without any of that UEFI shit, where Microsoft thinks, it can dictate what other operating system you can install. Thanks, but no thanks. I want a clean machine and bought one.

The new laptop arrived and I installed my preferred linux distribution, LMDE. The next step would have been to transfer my home folder from old to new and be done within an hour.

Since the laptop came from a linux sprecialist, my expectation was for everything to work out of the box. Yet, it did not. I had ignored the basic linux lesson: check whether your hardware is supported. My bad.

My graphic card was not supported, the laptop ran in software rendering mode. That means, all processors were running at up to 90% capacity. And that in turn reduced the run on battery from the promised 8-10 hours to a mere two hours. Not possible.

After unsuccessfully trying to fix that by myself, a conversation with the friendly supplier got the answer: the hardware was too new. And LMDE. using a slightly older kernel, lacked the required drivers. The newer kernel would not come into LMDE for another one or two years.

Luckily, by now other distributions are using my preferred desktop environment, Cinnamon. So I switched distribution. But now the software programs or applications were of a different version, mostly older ones. LMDE uses an older kernel, but the applications are cutting edge. LinuxMint is the other way around, newer kernel, but slightly older application versions. Bugger.

Copying the home folder was not an option anymore. Instead, I had to transfer the data by individual application. And I had to redo all my settings, making everything look and behave the way I want it. After a few updates and changes, I am now where I want to be. Everything works brilliantly. Everything looks and behaves the way I want it to. No spyware on the machine, no maleware, just clean, neat free open source software.

Consider me a very happy camper. And now I should have time for Diablog again.

By the way, has anyone seen or heard of Glynsky?

Stay tuned,

Engine Room


Update party

Dear Reader,

A while back I said here, that I will not help people with Windows 10. Breaking that promise, I did help someone, who had installed the upgrade from windows 7 to 10. He could neither print, nor scan. And what a mess it was.

In the past you bought common, middle of the road hardware from reputable manufacturers and it worked with Windows.

Well, screw that. The HP thing did not work. And when you want to download the HP software, you have to register at the Microsoft store, and probably the HP store, and with Satan, I guess. Wait, that was repetitive.

In any case, getting the printer / scanner to work in Windows 10 was worse, than any fiddling I had to do with Linux ever. Even a decade ago. So, that was it. No Windows 10 support from me. If you insist on having it, fix it yourself. Or pay someone. I am out of that.

On to good news, we did hundreds of updates to our little server. You did not notice. Because – let me emphasize that:

Linux just works.

Thank you very much to all the developers, coders, architects, maintainers. volunteers, supporters, people, who make Linux happen.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Stay free,

Engine Room

slightly bad news

Dear Reader,

My apology for the few days of silence. It has two reasons.

The first reason is a good one. I went on another road trip, attended parties with younger folks, and had a pile of fun. More about that later.

The second reason is a bad one. And that caused a bit of additional and unexpected work.

During last weekend a server of was cracked. Since I like and recommend Linuxmint, being informed was important. You can read about the cracking here:

As far as we know, you need to be concerned only, if you downloaded the installation file for Linuxmint 17.3 Cinnamon 64 Bit over the weekend and installed Linuxmint from that file. The crackers were able to change the download location to a server of theirs and had file with malicious code in there.

The second part of the bad news was, the crackers got in through a security hole in WordPress. We are using WordPress and I recommend it. Again, I wanted to know more, and whether we are affected.

All our software is up to date and we should be OK.

Back to fun stuff next,

Engine Room

the way it should be

Dear Reader,

Maybe you heard or read the news, a major library of Linux (glibc) had a security hole. The same day it was discovered most major distributions had an update ready. That is exactly how it should be.

Our server was updated this night, no major problems, no fubar. We are back to normal.

Stay safe,

Engine Room

Moderation #2

Dear Reader,

Last Wednesday I deleted two more comments on diablog. They were as non-amusing, non-interesting as the ones deleted earlier. They were troll comments.

Trolls are reminded of “The rules of the internet“, especially #9:

1. Do not talk about /b/
2. Do NOT talk about /b/
3. We are Anonymous
4. Anonymous is legion
5. Anonymous never forgives
6. Anonymous can be a horrible, senseless, uncaring monster
7. Anonymous is still able to deliver
8. There are no real rules about posting
9. There are no real rules about moderation either – enjoy your ban
10. If you enjoy any rival sites – DON’T
11. All your carefully picked arguments can easily be ignored
12. Anything you say can and will be used against you
13. Anything you say can be turned into something else – fixed
14. Do not argue with trolls – it means that they win
15. The harder you try the harder you will fail
16. If you fail in epic proportions, it may just become a winning failure
17. Every win fails eventually
18. Everything that can be labeled can be hated
19. The more you hate it the stronger it gets
20. Nothing is to be taken seriously
21. Original content is original only for a few seconds before getting old
22. Copypasta is made to ruin every last bit of originality
23. Copypasta is made to ruin every last bit of originality
24. Every repost it always a repost of a repost
25. Relation to the original topic decreases with every single post
26. Any topic can easily be turned into something totally unrelated
27. Always question a person’s sexual prefrences without any real reason
28. Always question a person’s gender – just incase it’s really a man
29. In the internet all girls are men and all kids are undercover FBI agents
30. There are no girls on the internet
31. TITS or GTFO – the choice is yours
32. You must have pictures to prove your statements
33. Lurk more – it’s never enough
34. There is porn of it, no exceptions
35. If no porn is found at the moment, it will be made
36. There will always be even more fucked up shit than what you just saw
37. You can not divide by zero (just because the calculator says so)
38. No real limits of any kind apply here – not even the sky
41. Desu isn’t funny. Seriously guys. It’s worse than Chuck Norris jokes
42. Nothing is Sacred
43. The more beautiful and pure a thing is – the more satisfying it is to corrupt it
44. There is always furry porn of it
45. The pool is always closed

Happy new year to all,

Engine Room


Dear Reader,

Normally we do not moderate comments on diablog. Because a) we don’t have to, and b) we love our commentators way too much.

For transparency this is to let you know, that today is the rare exception. I deleted some meaningless, repetitive, one-word comments, which might have been a mistake. or something. They did not add anything to the conversation. Nothing of value was lost.

Stay tuned,

Engine Room