26/11/2003 @22:48:43 ^00:48:07


An epic saga of the revivication of a sickly and intractable base unit, in several parts. How many, I haven't decided yet. The point is there's no way I'll write this whole thing today.

1. "Christ, what a bleedin' racket"

caco started its life at the Realm on a hot day in mid July. I bought it off a guy on ebay in what I felt was a good deal, although I decided not to reveal the price to avoid morons going "haha you've been ripped off". While I admit it was more expensive than I wanted it to be, I was still well within my budget (i.e. the money I'd earned for that week of data entry in the students' union in May) and it had a better specification than I felt I needed.

Having installed a second network card in place of the largely useless 56K PCI modem I powered it up. Three things became apparent. Lastly, a brand new installation of Windows XP Professional. In case anyone remembers it, this was how XP LOL 2, a screenshot of an MS Paint window in which was scrawled "I am using XP hahaha", originated. But before that I'd gone into the BIOS and noticed how hot the CPU temperature was reported to be. 60°C for a 600MHz Duron processor? Fuck that, my 800MHz sits at around 35°C or 40°C! And before that, in fact as soon as I'd pressed the power button, I noticed the fans. This thing sounded like there was a helicopter under my desk.

Nevertheless it seemed to be operational, and at least I could fix the first one. I made a Debian net install CD-RW and with not inconsiderable satisfaction used it, without making any attempt whatsoever to preserve the previous installation. With hindsight I was probably a little hasty here. There are a few reasons for having Windows around. Several Doom source ports and all the good WAD editors have no linux version. There's no decent music sequencers. And so on. I was hasty, especially since to be honest I've got this 80 gig disc I haven't actually done much at all with yet.

Anyway Debian installed fine, as it does if you're careful. In fact it surprised me, it managed to download 40MB of packages without any trouble at all. This was the first hint I'd ever had that the other machine's frozen internet connections might actually be caused by its network card instead of a dodgy NTL installation. Of course being lazy, listless and miserable I didn't investigate that fully until four months later but there you go.

To go with my previous machine's stupid choice of hostname, 'anARCHy', I made an equally stupid choice of hostname for this new box. There's a huge clue in this update if you can't guess. The idea was hilarious at the time, what more can I say? So I plugged the cable modem into one of goatse's network cards and connected goatse's other network card to anARCHy with my shiny new crossover ethernet cable. A few changes to configuration files and they could talk to each other! A bit of screwing with iptables and they could both talk to the rest of the internet as well. I was very happy. All that time reading networking HOWTOs and man pages had paid off! I'd even managed to pick up the fact that there's two ways you can wire an ethernet cable, and purchased the correct type!

Next time: a slightly less retarded choice of hostnames, and disaster strikes when I try to do some maintenance! Stay tuned!