By: Dunechaser.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on March 24th 2008 at 5:29 pm

Die Hard 4: scp

Nmap, a network security scanning tool, has gotten quite a bit of fame in the shape of film appearances. Personally, I’ve seen Nmap a few times, but I have very often seen scp and ssh used. I could name the Bourne films, Die Hard 4 and The Matrix: Reloaded, for instance. When I re-watched Die Hard 4 today (on my computer), I suddenly remembered the RSA prompt I had seen fly by when I saw it in the cinema, and so hit enter the moment I saw it. I managed to grab some screen caps:

I thought “Hmm, that’s an IP”. You can see it quite clearly in the first screenshot— I ran a trace on this, and it came up as being on a Japanese domain, mail.osaka-itkaikei.ac.jp.

I visited the domain and, lo and behold, a Japanese website with no apparent relation to Die Hard 4 pops up. Len, what on earth is your point? Also, could anyone tell me what window manager Farrell is using?


Posted by Lasse Havelund on January 4th 2008 at 7:18 pm

Toshiba Satellite L40-10Q and Ubuntu

So, I was a bit unfortunate to spill a cup of tea in my old laptop. Fortunately, I discovered the thing had full insurance, which means I’m now the happy owner of a brand-new Toshiba L40-10Q (at no charge!).

As the laptop was in for repairs (I wasn’t sure whether the thing was unfit for repair, or if they would repair it and ship it back to me), I was going over the range offered by the store to see what would suit me best (and at a similar price of the old one).

I found what seemed like a decent laptop, the Toshiba Satellite L40-10Q, which had a dual-core processor, an Intel chipset, on-board Intel graphics (GMA950) and a gig of RAM.

When I received note that the laptop would be too expensive to repair, I went directly into the store and spoke to the manager—great guy; even offered me a job. Full-time, unfortunately.

Anyway; he let me put in the LiveCD, which I played with for a bit. My initial impressions were mostly wow and sweet: the 1280×800 resolution worked out of the box, it was incredibly fast.

I noticed a loud high-pitched note when I started machine, but didn’t take further note of it. I couldn’t use my wireless, either—despite the Atheros HAL module being listed as installed and in use in the restricted modules dialogue.

I took the laptop home, installed Ubuntu, and after searching the internet for 2 hours, compiled the madwifi module properly and got it working (with a bit of help from #madwifi and the MadWifi bug tracker).

However, the loud-pitched noise was still present every time ALSA attempted to play sound; I figured it was a bad module and re-compiled it. No cigar.

I spent around 5 hours searching the internet, asking in #alsa and searching the ALSA website. I eventually concluded it must be a bug, and reported the issue on the ALSA bug tracker. Today, I got a reply from someone, and to my joy, it worked—I no longer have a high-pitched noise when attempting to play music. In fact, I’m listening to my music in Banshee right now with no issues whatsoever!

Minor issues

I’ve had a few minor issues with the install; most notable is the lack of ability to use the Fn+F6/F7 keys to adjust the brightness of the screen, making it slightly dark. This is not a major issue, and I could easily live without, despite being completely certain this’ll be fixed at some point.

Update: I’ve now installed Hardy (the development branch of Ubuntu) on the laptop, and on this, sound works out of the box (I haven’t rebooted. It may die when I do; I’ve seen this happening on Feisty…) and my brightness modifiers work! Amazing.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on December 19th 2007 at 1:51 pm

Ubuntu Certificate of Authenticity

A few days ago, I posted a mock certificate of authenticity on the Ubuntu forums (as suggested by MasterCheese) on the Ubuntu Forums, which seems to have gathered quite a bit of attention; among other things, getting dugg with (at the time of writing) 882 diggs and a spot on the front page, and spawning several clones.

The sticker looks like this:

What can I say other than `wow’? I was given an idea by a dear friend of mine, and decided I might as well get going with Inkscape, and thus began doing this sticker. The sticker, along with the link to an SVG file (which is licenced under the GNU General Public License, can be found in the original Ubuntu Forums thread.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on November 1st 2007 at 6:18 pm


Lots of Linux users already know about Wine. So do I, and I’ve known about it for a long time.

For the ones of you who don’t know, Wine is a compatibility layer for Unix-like operating systems (Wine is Not an Emulator), designed to run applications built for Windows in said Unix-like operating system.

As I said, I’ve known about Wine for a long time, but Wine is improving every day, and is really becoming a great piece of software.

I’ll take an example: I’m a gamer (well, was before I switched to Linux), and I like to play the latest and the greatest of games, especially Half-Life 2 and related games. Valve, the developers of Half-Life 2, recently launched The Orange Box, a bulk of games including Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Team Fortress 2 and Portal. I’ve been looking forward to especially the latter two—I own the two former already.

At first I thought “aw hell”—these games were for Windows. While I have run HL2 successfully with Wine before, it had a few mildly annoying bugs. Not that annoying, but just enough to make me refuse to go out and pay $60 for a set of games I couldn’t run perfectly.

The last couple of days, however, I’ve heard so much about the games I felt I had to try, at least. I downloaded the latest version of Wine, 0.9.47, and gave it a whirl. It didn’t work. After grumbling a bit, I today decided to try installing Windows on my box—after all, I had paid $62.30 for these games, so I just had to try them.

They didn’t work. I kept getting errors about the main file, hl2.exe, so I rebooted into Ubuntu, installed Wine 0.9.46 and Steam—the application required to run all these games. And lo and behold:

It works. Steam works. And it actually looks kinda native. Also:

See, that’s cool. And games run flawlessly:

For more pics, see my flickr.

OK, so the above story isn’t the whole truth. I’ve had tons of problems with these games here—I tried for hours yesterday, looked through the Wine AppDB and a bunch of other things without getting it to work. Now it works flawlessly, and it took very, very little effort.

Anyway, the point I wanted forth here, is that the Wine team is doing an insanely good job, and getting far too little attention. If you ever run into a Wine dev, buy them a beer (not enough money? You can get a quick loan online!). They deserve it.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on October 21st 2007 at 11:42 pm


Priceless (to you UbuntuWeblogs readers: sorry, but I felt I had to share this with everyone.)

1 comment

Posted by Lasse Havelund on October 17th 2007 at 8:51 pm

What Phone?

While I do have a very nice phone already, the Sony Ericsson K800i, I’ve decided to look for a new one, with a certain array of features:

  • 802.11b/g/n support (n isn’t important, but definitely appreciated),
  • Large touch screen (preferable with multi touch)
  • Ability to install a PDF reader if not available by default—I want it to work as my eBook reader
  • Ability to play ogg vorbis files, or to install an application that will
  • Preferably one running Linux (fat chance)
  • Ability to sync with Evolution somehow.

Has anyone got any idea where to find this? I’ve had a look at the Nokia N800 tablet, which runs a variant of Debian… only to discover it hasn’t got a phone.

I’ve also looked at the OpenMoko phone, Neo1973, but it doesn’t seem like it’s living up to its hype, and there isn’t even a proper version of it out yet (though there is one due in December).

What are your suggestions?


Posted by Lasse Havelund on October 16th 2007 at 8:52 am

A Cry for Help

After having struggled with a problem for a long time, I’m going to direct my cry for help here. Maybe one of you generous people will be able to help me.

The problem is, that no matter how hard I try, I haven’t been able to get my SiS SI7012 audio chipset working, but for most things, this isn’t an issue—I just use a USB sound card, which is plug and play.

But still, I’m having some issues with how ALSA manages my devices. My /proc/asound/cards reports:

0 [SI7012 ]: ICH - SiS SI7012
SiS SI7012 with AD1888 at 0xe800, irq 17
1 [default ]: USB-Audio - C-Media USB Headphone Set
C-Media USB Headphone Set at usb-0000:00:03.1-2, full speed

It says the USB audio card is set as my default card. But still, the SI7012 is card number 0, and it appears that tons of applications (Flash, mpd, mplayer…) seem to choose whichever is card 0, not what is set as default.

This means:

  • I cannot watch Flash films. On YouTube or anywhere else—provided sound is necessary.
  • I can’t use mplayer, my preferred movie player, to play my movies.
  • I cannot use mpd, and absolutely awesome music player to play my music.

I should note that:

  • I have tried adding options snd-intel8x0m index=0 to /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base, (as the ALSA wiki suggests)
  • I am absolutely certain the card works. I can output to it with Banshee, Exaile, VLC and many more
  • The device /is/ set as default.

PLEASE. If you know anything about this issue, have seen it before, or just know how to work your Googlemagic, please leave a note in the comments.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on September 16th 2007 at 12:12 am

Valve to Port Steam Games to Linux?

Yesterday, I received a link from Pici in #ubuntu-offtopic on IRC. Initially, it just looked like a job offering stating Valve (you know, the creators of Half-Life, Counter-Strike, Portal, Team Fortress and all that jazz?) wanted a senior software engineer (whatever that is), but after skimming it, my eyes rested on a single sentence under “Responsibilities”:

  • Port Windows-based games to the Linux platform.

WOW! I see great things coming to the Linux platform in gaming; I’ve had great success installing and running Half-Life 2, Counter-Strike: Source and Day of Defeat: Source in Wine, despite having rather low FPS.

If I were able to run these games natively, it would be a dream come true. Do you think you have what it takes to port these games to Windows, plus the rest of the responsibilities in the linked job offering? Come on, punk. Make my day.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on September 15th 2007 at 2:24 pm

Why a Seperate /home Rocks

The ability to have a seperate /home partition on Linux to keep all your settings, personalised stuff and so on is an incredible feature.

I’ve run the development branch of Ubuntu 7.10, Gutsy Gibbon, for a while now (since Tribe III), and when I installed that, I created a seperate partition for my /home.

I just re-installed my system from scratch, and instead of the boring brown (tangerine is the official term) Human desktop, this greeted me:

All my settings, all my themes, everything in /home/menza was exactly as I’d left it before installing.

So deviously simple, yet so unimaginably awesome.


Posted by Lasse Havelund on September 1st 2007 at 3:49 pm