Ubuntu USB

They have a saying with Ubuntu: “It Just works” and freak- it’s true, especially with the latest release 8.1 (Intrepid Ibex).

My goal was to install Ubuntu Server edition on a machine that is really, _just_ a server. No shmancy graphics card, no CD-ROM.. wait. No CD-ROM!? How do you install server software onto a *disconnected machine with no CD-ROM? USB.

Now previously, the ability has always been there, and you had to download this and do that and change this- since you were doing something out of the ordinary (at least that is, back then it was). So they simplified the whole process with Intrepid and made it ordinary.

Sooo.. on a desktop machine (an existing installation of Intrepid) select to create a USB disk; locate/select the server ISO (or CD if you’ve burned the ISO onto CD already); select the USB device you want to use and the rest is a progress bar.

Now you can boot with the USB device and install the server OS onto the machine of choice. It really does just work.


While The Politicians Dance

At home (that’s SA, not USA; although….), the politicians continue their frenzy of politicking. It’s great for them, i guess. They get to spend all their (paid) time to do what they studied to do (and perhaps the only thing they know how to do?): launch political strategies, talk about each other, spend money, campaign; pretty much everything except get down and solve the real problems.

Health, education, safety, housing, food, energy… these issues are not so important it seems. While all the politicians dance, the “guy on the street”, the ones working 8-5, 6-6 or not at all, are the ones bearing the burdens and suffering the patience of a long-awaited non-delivery. We have to be content with watching our money being diverted from the promised land into more airflights, suits, lunches, breakfasts, t-shirts, stickers, petty (and not so petty) court cases…

Of course, the argument is that these breakfasts and continued (boring) media tantrums are important enough so that the rest of the real work can start happening properly, with the right people in charge. And there’s truth to that. But the obvious responding question: “then why is there more politicking than delivery?” is never really answered. Except to say, well, because it’s really important to get that sorted so that the right people can start to do the work properly.

The irony is, the right people for the job are the ones who get busy just doing it, regardless. But they would probably never dream of being distracted from getting on with their job and “run for office”. ‘Cos, well, that’s all it is: running for an office. Maybe if we gave our politicans cubicles instead, there would be less of them “running for cubicles” :p

Rants Technology

Pending Changes

One of the great habits now ingrained into my being are doing diffs on code before committing a check in. It’s a great habit, and worth the extra quick 2 minutes. It’s also a great time to review your changes and get your head into the right space for your next move. Of course, having great tools like Subversion and Tortoise (or even git and bzr) make the job a pleasure. But then you have this…

Pending Changes

(Names have been blanked for privacy reasons)

My pending changes tells me i got a whole bunch of changes to commit but comparing each one tells me they’re the same. 😮 Not exactly conducive to keeping up a good habit, i would say. I actually only had 4 files that really changed, in case you’re wondering. No amount of refreshing, getting latest version or checking out could give me just the files i want to review before committing. Sigh.

And most people still ask me why i insist on using open source tools to do the job (properly) :p


I stumbled upon Derek’s posting on TFS and it does seem that things which should be simple (and were solved moons ago) are indeed quite difficult with TFS. The “plus” side though is ian has taken the time out to do something about it: cue LizardTF. Keeping an eye on that while i simply have to use TFS…