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BLOGical Thoughts Archive

June 2014

Friday, 27 June 2014

On Wednesday morning, I decided to upgrade this workstation from Linux Mint 16 to Linux Mint 17. The first thing I tried was to use the dist-upgrade option of apt. I ended up downloading and installing about 700MB of packages. I rebooted and everything was working fine until I attempted to update using the Update Manager. It was broken.

I was left with no choice but to start from scratch using a Linux Mint 17 install disk. Since I have my home directory on a separate disk partition, this is no problem for me. The installation went fine. I then had to reinstall all the extra programs I use on a daily basis. I have done that except for one program - Sigil. This entire procedure ended up taking about 10 hours because of the false start and because I am simultaneously doing a bit torrent download, which makes my Internet connection much slower. So I now have Mint 17 running on this workstation. It is a long-term support (LTS) edition, so I should be keeping it for quite a while.

Just so you get an idea of what I use, here is a list of programs I had to re-install after the upgrade:


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Monday, 23 June 2014

There were three car shows over the weekend: the Touchmark Retirement Show and Shine, the Liberty Lake Pies and Rides, and the Rattitude Rod Rumble Show. I have posted pictures on the car club web site for the first two shows. I haven't seen any pictures for the Rattitude show, which was held in St. Maries (60 miles from here).


 

At the start of this month, I posted information about my home's water conditioner, and indicated the I would need to take it over to Spokane to be repaired. Before I did that, I thought it would be good to try backflushing the conditioner to see if that helped with the problem of no water getting through the device. I did that yesterday and the water conditioner is now working fine. All I have to do now is get the iron stains that have accumulated by not using the water conditioner off of my bathtub.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Last Wednesday at the cruise-in at Paul Bunyon's in Rathdrum, we were visited by the classic cars that normally do a cruise-in at the Paul Bunyon's in Ponderay. Today we are supposed to reciprocate the visit, but with all the rain, we may not be able to. Yesterday, we had .8" and we are supposed to get more rain today. I guess we will just have to wait until this afternoon to see if the weather cooperates.


 

I had planned to attend the Car d'Lane car show down in Coeur d'Alene last Saturday, but two things prevented me from doing that. I had not entered my car in the show for several reasons, so I had no obligation to go to it. Secondly, it rained hard all day on Saturday and it was really not a good day for a car show. So no pictures of the 400+ cars that were there.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Monday, 9 June 2014

I spent last weekend working as the chairman for the gem and mineral show. I left the house on Friday at 6am and got home at 10:30pm. The next day, I left at 6:30am and got home at 10:45pm. Sunday was a short day, ast I left at 6:30am and got home at 7:45pm. Three long days. I did lots of walking, lifting, loading and am convinced I don't want to be the show charmain next year.

I took pictures at the show and I will post them at the mineral club web site in the next few days.


 

Back in March, I was having trouble with water in the house and discovered a valve in the wrong position. The valve actually diverts water to the water conditioner or around it, and it was not in the wrong position. To get it to work, though. I had diverted around the water conditioner. When I figured out what I had done (yellowing bathtub), I removed the water conditioner and checked it out. It has been inline for at least 20 years and in all that time, the only thing I have done to it is add salt.

Once I removed the conditioner, it was apparent that the screens in the feed and return lines were completely stopped up with iron and other nasty particles. I cleaned out the screens and re-installed the water conditioner. It worked for a few minutes, but then the water flow slowed to a trickle. I will need to have a Kinetico dealer repair the conditioner, and the only dealer around now is in Spokane. I will need to go over there sometime in the next few weeks.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Sunday, 1 June 2014

I have had a personal video recorder for 4 years, ever since Frank Ten Thy demonstrated his PVR at the North Idaho Linux Users Group. My PVR has an intel Atom processor with plenty of RAM and a 750GB hard disk. For the most part, it has worked very well for me.

The last time I upgraded the PVR operating system (Mythbuntu) was in 2012. There has been no more upgrades until this year. I downloaded the latest Mythbuntu (14.04, released last month) and attempted to install it on my PVR and had some problems. It installed and configured correctly, but I had a problem after I updated the operating system software. I got into an endless loop where the MythTV frontend kept trying to start, but couldn't because it couldn't talk to the rearend, so it reset it self and started over. The whole process then repeated. My conclusion is that the update was not fully concluded.

To fix this problem, I re-installed Mythbuntu 14.04 and configured it. I verified that everything was running fine, then I did the software update again. This time, it all worked okay, so now I have the latest software on my PVR.

I like using the PVR to record programs because then I don't have to stay up until all hours to watch things like The Mentalist and Castle, or be limited by time in watching Bones or Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"