Progress on nothing

Domain expired little while ago (, so all my links are now dead. Ugh. I didn't raise any money whatsoever through donations so I couldn't renew the domain. The URL for my blog is the original,


Anyway, Sysode got some new features. Users can now make projects publicly available for viewing. Public users can view the overview of the project, bugs and tasks. More to come, as well. Speed could be an issue down the road, Sysode is one of my bigger projects. Conversion to MySQL or PostreSQL might be needed down the road, as it uses pjjTextBase instead. For the amount of users now (that is, none), it runs fine. 

All of my projects are falling behind. I'm falling behind. Torrentino hasn't changed in months now, other than the new ads I added last week. I get decent traffic on my website, but sadly, no money. At least hosting is free, thanks to Web Hosting Serice (thanks a lot!). WorkSimple is stable yet theres an exploit or two that's out there. I don't know why I'm not worry about that. Rest of my site is in a state of disorganization, and frankly, I don't care. That's me.


Friday night, four day weekend w00t. Got 10.5.2 running again, as when I installed a Ti 200 (swapping it out for a Geforce 5200), OpenSolaris wouldn't boot properly. Everything was messed up. Since I'm that lazy, I douched it out for OS X.


Quick post is quick

Life's been the same, my blogging life has swindled down as well. I have an old 5" TV/radio (it has a handle on top!) of which I connected to a VCR hooked to one of my spare computers. You get a mess of cables and a very very small monitor. I had to sit an inch away from it to read anything.

Sysode has caught my interest again, I've added some new features too. Fixed some bugs and added the ability for public viewing of the project, check it out.

Celebrated 100 days of uptime on my fileserver the other day. I mainly use it as a SMB/FTP/NFS server and I can say it's pretty solid. 500MHz with 512MB's of RAM, and my first RAID experience as well.

Other than that, it's been quite boring. This is meant as a recap of the things that I've done, though I'm not in a rush.




So it just had to be the Windows box

Photo by MarkyBon

About last week my Windows Server [2003] (I had 2008 on there, then went back to 2003) server wouldn't boot. Since it's not accessed externally, I run TVersity to transcode by movies of which I watch on my 360.  

So, it wouldn't boot up which was great. Kept going into an endless loop, after POST it would keep rebooting. Dead RAM? You'd think it would beep if it was. But nope. Swapped the power supply and still nothing. Loose connection to the case fan? Still, nothing. Only other object that was still plugged in was the hard drive. Unplugged it. Booted normally (though it couldn't since it was the only one). Awesome. Ended up re-installing Server 2003 last night, turned out fine. 

Still puzzles me that it wouldn't boot at all. BIOS detected it fine, but once it tried to boot from the hard drive an endless loop occurred. Working well now, which is a surprise.


While I'm on the subject of shitty mishaps, my main web server packed it in. Didn't bother reading the logs, plugged in the monitor: kernel panic. Sweet. Screw it, reboot. Ran for couple more days. Again, kernel panic. Reboot, about two more days then it failed. Been down most of today, finally booted up my other spare web server which I should have done in the first place. Apparently Torrentino gets quite a large number of visits. 15000 this month.


'Bout time I head off, shit to do.





PPTP server on pfSense

 One of the servers that are at my disposal has a very low CPU usage percentage (if that makes sense). On my way to set up a PPTP VPN server on the box, I realized my router running pfSense could do it out of the box. In this short tutorial, I'll show you how to get a PPTP VPN working so that you can connect to it anywhere.

Head under VPN -> PPTP

Next, click on the Enable PPTP server radio button. For the Server address put in your WAN (public) IP. For the Remote address range, put in a local IP of which the range will start at. Near the end of the page, check Require 128-bit encryption.

Click save and click on the Users tab. Add a user, in this example, test and a password. You can enter an IP of which the user will be assigned but it's not neccesary.

And that's it! You now have a working PPTP server.

Now, I tried to connect with my iPhone 3G over Wifi. Worked fine. Over 3G? Nope. Did some Googling, it seems like you have to pay an additional $10 for a VPN option (I'm on Rogers) since Rogers gives you a LAN IP (such as 10.x.x.x) and firewalls the GRE protocol (of which is needed for a PPTP VPN to work).

It looks like the only way to get around this is to buy the $10 package, browse over to on your iPhone, change your APN settings and voila.


Any comments are appreciated :)


So, what's new?

Back in school, so that's just great. Thought I'd write a post, since I haven't for a couple weeks now. Was planning on working on WorkSimple the other day, but didn't. Set up a CS:S server, running pretty good too @ 1.8ghz with 512MB (Debian with XFS of course). 


I found myself having a TI-83+, but no sync cable. So, I tried to use the same type of cable that was used for a PDA but no luck. There's some pretty cool stuff you can do with the TI's. Just and update, I'll write another post in the coming days with some stuff that I've been doing.

Monitor your Linux boxen with iStat for the iPhone

So I came upon an app the other day while browsing on my iPhone. iStat. It monitors your uptime, network I/O, RAM usage, etc.. There was another app that just needed SSH access but that was another $2. Anyways, iStat has a Mac OS X, Linux, FreeBSD and Solaris port of the agent. Just simply install the agent on your boxen and done!


It's pretty simple to get it working, I'll go over the steps that I used on Lenny.

Grab the latest release here (at this time, 0.5.4), and extract it somewhere. For me to get it working in Debian, I had to install the libxml2-dev package first. Go ahead and type 




make && make install

I found it's easier to get a script to start it up which you can later get to run on boot. Download this file, save it something as '' and chmod it to 0755 (or 0777 if that doesn't work). I received an error about a user on using the script, but the agent still runs. Go ahead and run './ start' .

Start up iStat on your iPod Touch/iPhone and add the server running the agent. That's it! If you're monitoring something Mac, you're going to get more detailed information than other OS's.  This app is well worth the $0.99 I spent on it.


Feel free to comment if you need help and/or have suggestions.


Untethered jailbreak for iPhone 3G 3.1.2 with 5.11.07

 Seeing as blackra1n is only a tethered jailbreak, installing your own [custom] firmware is the way to go. But, (at least what happened to me) is that I constantly got 1604 errors while installing firmware of which I made using PwnageTool. As a short howto, here's what I did:

  1. Get blackra1n and run it. It'll put your iPhone in recovery mode. iTunes should be closed.
  2. Download or create custom firmware. If you are using PwnageTool, make sure to check off Activate so it is not activated. Just before it's done creating the firmware, click Yes to if your iPhone has been pwned before.
  3. Start up iTunes, and restore using the firmware you just made. For Windows users hold shift and click on Restore. For Mac users hold option. Make sure your iPhone is in recovery mode not DFU mode. That's the part that I forgot.
  4. iTunes should do it's thing and you'll be good to go.
  5. After I put the firmware on, I had no service whatsoever so I ran blackra1n again and I had service. If you have the 5.11.07 baseband, be sure to install sn0w in blackra1n. You might need to fiddle around with things.


And that's about it. You now have a jailbroken iPhone 3G that's untethered. Also, here's how to install .ipa's:

  1. Add the repo in Cydia.
  2. Install AppSync and Installous. AppSync patches the MobileInstallation file while Installous lets you install .ipa's on the fly.
  3. Either sync drag and drop the .ipa's to iTunes and sync OR download the Safari download plug-in (which allows you to download files), find .ipa's and install them. I put all the .ipa's I needed on a local server so I head over to the server address and install them right away. You can do that by using something like XAMPP.




Photo by gari.baldi

With Ymas coming up, it makes me realize all the blogging I've done in the last year. I'm glad I got as much traffic as I did, surprised even. Anyway, here are some highlights of the last year or so.

Most viewed article: How I got Debian Lenny working on my Eee.
Debian is my favourite distro of all-time, so after getting it working on my Eee (which some people had problems with) I thought I'd write a post on it. And well, I did. Runner up is the Eee wallpapers that I made.

Most dugg post: How to: Turn a wireless router into an access point
This one surprised me. After turning two routers into an access point, I thought I might as well post about it. 36 diggs. I know that's not a lot, but a lot for me! It still continues to be a popular listing on Google.

Most popular project: WorkSimple
I can't believe people use this. Apparently, it's quite popular on Hot Scripts. It has stayed on the first page of the 'PHP blog categorey' for quite some time now, occasionally setting the to the second page. WorkSimple needs lots of work, version 1.3.2 needs releasing. The 1.3.x branch should have followed the 1.3.0 Solar beta (screenshot here), but didn't. 

Despite all my other projects, this stayed on top; which is still odd for me.

This post sounds exactly like this year, which is odd.

I guess that's about it, nothing else exciting really happened. As usual, any comments/thoughts are appreciated :)




How to: Simple load balancer setup for web servers

I finally put together a load balancing setup together this weekend, and I'm surprised it was this easy.

What you'll need is three servers, two web servers and one server for the load balancer. It's not recommended that you only use one load balancer since it's a single point of failure (SPOF) but I only had one extra server on hand. For this tutorial, I used Debian Lenny.


First thing's first, download and install pound on your load balancer. 


apt-get install pound


Once you've done that, head over to /etc/pound and edit your pound.cfg file accordingly. Here's an example for the web servers:


#first web server
Port 80

#second web server
Port 80


 Also be sure to set your ListenHTTP address and port.

Now edit your /etc/default/pound file and change startup=0 to startup=1

Start pound up with /etc/init.d/pound start If everything is configured properly, check out (or whatever IP and port you put in your pound.cfg)
Half the time, the requests should go to Server A while the other half goes to Server B (you can configure this). For anything else, check out the man page here or type man pound

Luckily, my file server is running NFS and SAMBA, so I can have the same content on each web server. I couldn't completely get NFS working on Windows Server 2008 (which is on one of the web servers, ugh) so I mapped a SAMBA shared as a network drive and that seemed to work. 

 That's the end of this short tutorial, but keep in mind there's more things you can do with pound. You can set up chroot jails, HTTPS balancing and way more. Any comments or ideas are appreciated.