Saturday, December 26, 2009

EXP /// Risen From The Ashes

I dragged the old NetVista out of its resting place and experimented with dropping connections when players request a local file.

It doesn't look like it's gonna happen, boys and girls. Although there is a unique byte sequence at the beginning of every UT mod file, the server apparently doesn't start sending data exactly from byte zero. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. But mostly it doesn't. Scratch that idea (but I do have a Plan B).

This old box didn't take well to sitting in a corner for the past year. Booting it was iffy. Sometimes it took six power on/off cycles to come up, so on Christmas Morning, in true Busman's Holiday style, I replaced the boot drive, which was a tiny 6G Maxtor with a manufacturing date of 10/30/1998.

Whoa. No wonder it had problems booting.

I replaced it with a 20G Maxtor that had "GOOD" written on it in Sharpie marker. That's the only way I can keep track of these things anymore (I have a huge box of "BAD" Sharpie'd CD ROM drives in the basement. I'd throw them out but the spiders think they're upscale condos).

I used Clonezilla to copy the drive. It was the first time I've ever used it and was quite pleased withe the result, although the user interface leaves much to be desired.

I moved the /var partition to the "new" drive and put the box back together. Then just for the Hell of it I upgraded the kernel to (yes, while you weren't looking they up-revved it twice). Re-compiling the kernel killed about four hours.

Now it runs better than ever, with no sign of the DMA issues BOT House had, even though I raided its RAM to beef up the old iPaq I've been twiddling around with (it suffered a horrible fate when I attempted to upgrade it to Ubuntu 9.10, BTW).

The only complaint I had with the new kernel was that damned Linux penguin (Tux) appeared out of nowhere on the boot screen. I've always hated that little rat bastard ever since they made it the official logo (this is blasphemy, BTW) and I had one Hell of a time getting rid of the little fucker. It happens there's a little known kernel default option - logo.nologo - that shuts him off, although I've never had to use it on any other box.

So that got me wondering if I could put my own logo on the boot screen. It's possible, but you have to recompile the kernel to make it happen. I thought it would be cute to have a little Hinky head in there, but I just couldn't seem to get a good 80x80 pixel version in the required 16 color (not 16 bit color) console format. But I wasted hours playing around with it.


So anyway, that was my Christmas. I hope you had more fun than I did.

No comments:

Post a Comment