Friday, June 28, 2013

Repurposing an old laptop

I was looking to install a HTPC in the bedroom. I fall into a category not disimilar to the hobo-geeks. I have enough money to buy tech goodies, but am too tight fisted to spend it! I tried Raspberry Pi running raspbmc and openelec, but despite all the reviews I read, all the tips and advice, it just didn't cut the mustard for me. It's nowhere quick enough to tolerate my media library, and it's too flaky when it comes to SD card corruption.

What to do? I had an old Dell D620 laying around (i don't often through away machines) and thought it would do the job perfectly. I set about removing the screen, and extracting the wifi module/antenna to reuse. Here it is topless, and all screwed back together:

Next I needed an appropriate image that's easy to install, configure, quick to boot and reliable. I chose XBMCbuntu. You can get it here - I added  an old MCSE remote I had laying around which worked out of the box. The finished result was a very quick booting, powerful (enough) PC capable of 720p playback via wireless. Easy to use, and achieved a high WAF.

Configuring SNMP on multiple Solaris 10 machines

There was a requirement to configure SNMP on dozens of Solaris 10 servers. I took one server, modified the /etc/sma/snmp/snmpd.conf file, tested it worked using snmpwalk, then wrote the following script to deploy that snmpd.conf as a template to every server in servers.list. Here's the script:


for x in $(cat servers.list)
     echo "Server: $x"
     ssh root@${x} "mv /etc/sma/snmp/snmpd.conf /etc/sma/snmp/snmpd.orig"
     scp ./snmpd.conf root@${x}:/etc/sma/snmp/snmpd.conf
     ssh root@${x} "svcadm disable snmpdx; svcadm refresh snmpdx; svcadm enable sma; svcadm refresh sma; sleep 3; svcs -v sma"