FreeBSD Challenge, Day 16

Busy day with other things than play computers, but I found a little time. I have FreeBSD 10-STABLE loaded with the custom WiFi hack on my Elitebook Revolve 810 . I would have to let it try to boot off the USB stick. After multiple tries, it would finally run the installer. I tried ZFS a few times, but if I did not select MBR format for the partition table, then it would not boot (no OS error). With MBR and ZFS, it would fail to mount the ZFS filesystem with <strong>error 2</strong>. After trying the various fixes listed on-line, I gave up and went with MBR and UFS.

Once installed, it was fairly easy to get going. I have not configured it to take on the role of daily driver yet. If I have time tomorrow, then I will do it then, otherwise, it will have to wait a bit as I am getting on a plane this weekend, and I will not have room for the second computer. I will try to get it as far as I can with ssh.

The neat thing I found based on this email post from 2005 and this blog post is that I can have a fancy screensaver at the console! Pretty rad. 🙂 Next steps will be improving the screen resolution in text-mode.</body></html>

FreeBSD Challenge, Day 12-15

Half-way point.

Much progress made in the world of a bootable USB stick to get my new-fangled WiFi chip working. I was able to make a new image, wrote it to a new USB stick, booted it, and was able to successfully scan for my Access Points! W00t!

Tomorrow, I will take the second laptop (HP EliteBook Revolve 810), and load it with 10-Release (slightly patched). I do not expect everything to work (it has a touch screen), but enough should work that I can start using it for the daily driver. Having real wifi will help a lot.

My updates have been a bit slow due to craziness at work. I am taking a trip, and the departure date has been reset many times. I am on my 5th set of airline tickets. With things settled, I need to decide if I am going to bring the second laptop (the R180) with me or not. Weight issues and all.

How do I think this is going? Well, the two major issues I thought I would have going in, WiFi and Photo editing/management, are for the most part solved. Can I use this for my daily non-work driver? Yes. Can I use it for my work daily driver? Maybe. I have set up a few jails on the FreeNAS box (btsync, dns/dhcp, taskwarrior’s taskd, and Plex), and they are mainly working well together (the Plex will not play nice with btsync, yet), but I need to figure out a bit more, and set it up as a target to backup my laptop’s ZFS snapshots.

Next steps are to find those performance monitoring tools/docs, and to look at something like puppet/chef/salt.

Thanks for reading….

FreeBSD Challenge, Day 9-11

Ah, life with kids…not enough spare time with soccer and volleyball practices and games.

Things are going well. Found a few more small utilities that I use under Linux and added them via pkgng, and all is good.

Next up: system debugging. The system will slow down at random points, so I need to go find a good performance debug guide. The only thing changed was I imported my music library (~60G), but my drive is still plenty empty (~37% used), so I do not think it is ZFS, but I am not sure.

The other is the custom boot stick I made does not work. The initial loader will start, but then it stops. So, I need to find the docs on the boot process there.

Oh, and welcome to all the folks from BSDNow, which is an awesome video/audio podcast on all things BSD.

FreeBSD Challenge, Day 8

Again, work is dragging, so not much to update.

I have install btsync and I am now syncing home dirs between the laptop, desktop, and the FreeNAS.

My attempt to build a custom kernel to deal with the new WiFi was mixed. I was able to build the kernel and world just fine and it made a USB image for me. But, it would not boot…I do need to figure out how to debug this. 🙂

FreeBSD Challenge, Day 7

AKA Fight with Thunderbird and Lightning.

I broke down and installed a PBI for now. I could not get Lightning, the calendaring AddOn for Thunderbird to work using the native FreeBSD pkg or the linux-thunderbird one. The linux-thunderbird package actually refused to start for me. I need to go figure out how to generate a PR.

The other thing I am playing with is building a memstick image after patching the kernel using this post in the FreeBSD Forums. This is for the Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6235 WiFi Driver which I have in all my laptops. The data wants to be free! from wires. Since it is chunking away, I will test tomorrow.