First RPi mishap


Yesterday pixie, my RPi serving as the torrent/dlna box, stopped responding. Rebooting it doesnt help as it eventually reverts to only having the red LED on which I have started to interpret as the system is not yet booted.

I pulled pixie out of its nook and hooked it to my monitor before rebooting it. It showed that the boot process is encountering errors when reading from the SD card. The process stopped while asking for the root password to start the file check maintenance, or Ctrl-D to continue the boot process. I plugged a keyboard and here lies the conundrum: this is a debian system and I have been administering it as the pi user. I have been relying on the sudo mechanism and never replaced the root password so I cant provide it. That realization blows.

No other recourse now but to pull out the SD card and have the partition checked on my desktop. A “sudo fsck /dev/sdb2 -y” command (because sdb2 is the partition assigned to it by udev) and ten minutes of automated fixing later pixie is back online serving its DLNA goodness.


Now I made sure I have changed the root password so this can be fixed without booting the desktop. Come to think of it, I am doing it also on my Ubuntu desktop. 😉


Raspberry Media Server is now online


Hectic schedule but I finally finished having my own TorrentBox/DLNA/UPnP server out of the Raspberry Pis. One concern that got answered is if the system is usable as a media streaming server as there has been reports of slow throughput since the Pi’s ethernet (network) and USB system share the same memory space. Early on the file I/O throughput on the SD card I am using as the BIOS and operating system is a little bit slow, and as a techie friend (named Gideon[1]) pointed out its the class of the card itself that is the bottleneck.

The instructions are all over the net so Ill just reference the articles I used and add the other stuff I did to make it work on Pixie (the name of this Pi).

Apparently a headache

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Thats the difference between 21 and 32 inches at 2 feet away. 🙂

Sounds great in theory but sucks a bit in actual use. 😐


The RPis have landed


I had some difficulty in locally procuring Raspberry Pis because even if there is a local RS branch, they initially sold a single batch for almost twice the price. When we last checked they are no longer selling them unless we are ordering by the hundreds to make it their while to import it. They said we could order directly from the UK office. Bummer.

Then I heard that Filepp, a colleague from a previous project, is on a short-term assignment in UK. So we grabbed the chance to ask a favor to procure a couple of RPis for us and now they have landed and the cases were given as gifts. (Note: Thank you Filepp. I’ll try not to torture you too much if I get to work with you again. Crap, we know I cant keep that promise 😉 ).

Time passes by in technology

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I spent 5 minutes explaining a scripting issue with a junior member of my team when he asked what the CR and LF characters in the comments section was.

I briefly explained that it stands for Carriage Return and Line Feed but I saw the still puzzled look on his face,  the type that was trying to digest something very unfamiliar.  I decided to explain further, with matching actions, that those were based in the activities in the typewriter that you need to go to the starting of the line (carriage return)  and pushing a lever to add a new line (line feed).

I looked at my young grasshopper and saw the puzzled look became a perplexed one.  It was then that I realized the mistake that I made so I asked the next probable question which is “have you had the chance to use a manual typewriter before? ” The answer was a quick No.

I had to laugh since he is basically a fresh grad and in his early twenties. I am on my early thirties and am amazed at what a decade of difference would make in terms of technology.
I wonder how soon it would be before the future graduates are unable to grasp the concepts used as basis for ubiquitous things in technology such as using one or two characters to go to the next line on the document.  🙂

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