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frugal technology, simple living and guerrilla large-appliance repair

Regular blog here, 'microblog' there

Many of my traditional blog post live on this site, but a great majority of my social-style posts can be found on my much-busier microbloging site at updates.passthejoe.net. It's busier because my BlogPoster "microblogging" script generates short, Twitter-style posts from the Linux or Windows (or anywhere you can run Ruby with too many Gems) command line, uploads them to the web server and send them out on my Twitter and Mastodon feeds.

I used to post to this blog via scripts and Unix/Linux utilities (curl and Unison) that helped me mirror the files locally and on the server. Since this site recently moved hosts, none of that is set up. I'm just using SFTP and SSH to write posts and manage the site.

Disqus comments are not live just yet because I'm not sure about what I'm going to do for the domain on this site. I'll probably restore the old domain at first just to have some continuity, but for now I like using the "free" domain from this site's new host, NearlyFreeSpeech.net.

Thu, 12 Jul 2018

Social-style entries generated by my BlogPoster script are now going directly to the Updates site

I've been meaning to make this switch for awhile, and today I switched things around in my BlogPoster script so that the social-media-style entries I generate with it are now going directly to my Updates site.

So the message you currently see at the top of this site is not entirely accurate anymore. I will keep it there for now while the changes to the script are still young, but from here forward, My shortish entries that are generally mirrored on Twitter will not appear here, even temporarily.

When I change the message above, I will probably put some kind of link or navigation that allows readers to toggle between the main blog and the updates site.

I have been working on a new version of the BlogPoster script, but it's been slow going, so I might try to separate the configuration information and put it in a separate file so I can publish the current script, more or less, on GitHub. That's the main problem -- I'm developing using a version of the live script that I am actually using, so it's hard to avoid committing logins and passwords to git. Once I have them separated out, I can create a sample configuration file and let the script create the "live" version of same on the first run.

It's funny. Now that I have the program that I intended to write (with the exception being that it's a command-line utility and not a GUI application ... yet), I spend a lot more time using it than I do hacking on it. I need to tip things in the other direction.

Wed, 11 Jul 2018

It's 2018, and I'm still dealing with suspend/resume issues in Fedora 28 on my 5-year-old HP laptop

One of the reasons I decided to do much of my daily computing with the Windows 10 operating system that came with my other newer HP laptop is the constant trickle of issues that I'm tired of dealing with in Linux.

I'm running a newly installed Fedora 28 on this 2012-made (and 2013-bought) HP Pavilion g6 -- meaning there has been ample time for all hardware incompatibilities to be resolved. But when returning from suspend/resume, everything works except for the wired networking. WiFi is fine, as is the display, sound, keyboard and mouse.

But wired networking won't work until I reboot.

For the record, the WiFi card is a Qualcomm Atheros AR9485, and the wired Ethernet card is a Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL810xE PCI Express Fast Ethernet controller, both according to lspci.

The "culprit" in this case is the r8169 module, and I tried this 2013-era fix: Fix Network after Resume from suspend in Ubuntu or Linux Mint.

This ancient fix did not work.

While there's a detective/hobbyist aspect to solving these problems in Linux, I'd rather that things just worked. I saw a Fedora bug report on this issue from 2016, and it's fairly obvious that this regression hasn't been resolved. There's even a 2018 update that points this out.

The good part of this bug is that it only affects my Realtek wired interface. The Atheros WiFi interface works fine after suspend/resume, and since I use WiFi most of the time, this issue shouldn't keep me from getting things done. It's still a pain.

Sun, 08 Jul 2018

I'm running Fedora the way the Fedora people want me to run Fedora

Before my Fedora 27-to-28 upgrade failed in a spectacular enough fashion that I had to figure out how to reinstall the operating system while keeping my user files (spoiler alert: I was successful in doing it), I had a system that had been though maybe 10 successful upgrades and had collected plenty of cruft along the way.

This particular laptop, now a 5-year-old HP Pavilion g6, made it through the transitions from yum to dnf and X11 to Wayland and from the time the Catalyst/AMD driver worked to when it didn't (and I didn't need it).

For the F28 upgrade to go wrong was very much out of character for my experience with Fedora, which I began using with F13 (quickly upgraded to F14) on my previous laptop, a 2010-era Lenovo G555, before an upgrade-gone-bad sent me to Debian for the rest of its life. That cheap Lenovo died a quick death in 2013, going to sleep one minute, not waking up, ever again, the next.

There were and are many reasons to run Fedora. But for me, the constant flow of new Linux kernels meant my at-the-time new hardware would be supported much more quickly than in distros that kept the same kernel for the life of the release. And to get that constant newness, all I had to do was make sure the system was updated. That was my No. 1.

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