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stopped clicking hp laptop on ubuntu linux 9.10

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Managed to re-do the fix for the clicking hard disk in my HP latitude laptop under ubuntu 9.10.

Used the information from here;

All I needed to do to stop the power saving changing back to 128 when hiberating (check using sudo hdparm -B /dev/sda) was to create the script “/etc/pm/sleep.d/50_hdparm-pm“;

if [ -n "$1" ] && ([ "$1" = "resume" ] || [ "$1" = "thaw" ]); then
        hdparm -B 255 /dev/your-hard-drive > /dev/null


Written by Steve

September 5, 2010 at 2:22 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

homeasy: setting up the HE302b sockets with the SMS base station

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To get the HE302b sockets to talk to the base station you need to;

1. Prepare a text message “setup <groupname>”.

2. Just before sending, press (dont hold) the button on the socket so that the light flashes.

3. Send the text.

4. The socket will switch on and off twice.

Written by Steve

July 30, 2010 at 10:32 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

using DNS name in fstab

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kept getting error when using hostname (DNS entry or hosts file) in fstab for a CIFS share;

mount: wrong fs type, bad option, bad superblock on //SDDSKBLK/Share,
missing codepage or helper program, or other error
(for several filesystems (e.g. nfs, cifs) you might
need a /sbin/mount.<type> helper program)
In some cases useful info is found in syslog – try
dmesg | tail  or so

First I installed smbfs. This changed the error to;

mount error(5): Input/output error

I found that the hostname had to match the machine name to clear this.


BAD – //someothernamedefinedinhostsfile/share /mnt/share

OK – //actaulHostNameOfServer/share /mnt/share

Written by Steve

July 23, 2010 at 7:05 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

Options are missing from Authorizations in Ubuntu 9.10

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Written by sumofungus

February 8, 2010 at 10:19 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

making backup copies of damaged dvds using ddrescue

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I would normally use AnyDVD (on Windows) to take a backup of a DVD with copy protection, but is doesn’t seem to handle read errors very well (e.g. discs have small scratches) and copies fail.

GNU ddrescue (gddrescue, ddrescue, NOT dd_rescue) on linux is supposed to be better at handling small errors and is designed to handle read errors.

Using ddrescue

So far I have found that the best way is to take an quick(ish) initial copy;

ddrescue -b 2048 -n -v /dev/sr0 image.iso image.log

This reads the whole disk once, marking any bad blocks as “non-trimmed”. It then reads again in the other direction retrying any bad blocks. Any blocks that still fail are “trimmed” then marked as non-split. There is no further processing after this because of the -n option.

If there are any read errors do another pass using the direct option (-d). You must also specify the number of retries that bad sectors get (-r), otherwise they will be ignored;

ddrescue -b 2048 -d -r 3 -v /dev/sr0 image.iso image.log

… if there are further errors then you can use the -R (retrim) option to retry full sectors (taken from Forensics Wiki). This will try the any bad sectors in a different order which might help read some (according to the ddrescue documentation, see link below);

ddrescue -b 2048 -d -r 3 -R -v /dev/sr0 image.iso image.log

I have yet to investigate using different drives to read the disc for another pass, but this might also help.

Other Notes

I don’t think this method (using ddrescue)¬† removes any copy protection.


Full manual for GNU ddrescue;

Reading discs might take a long time;–td21461792.html

Good documentation about Data Recovery and ddrescue;

Written by sumofungus

January 19, 2010 at 2:07 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

Unlock greyed out in Ubuntu when using nx(nomachine)

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I was trying to use the “services-admin” application over a nxserver (nomachine) connection and the Unlock button was greyed out. This was the same for the “Users and Groups” button as well.
Solution was to run “polkit-gnome-authorization” and select org->freedesktop->systemtoolsbackends … and setting “Anyone” and “Console” to “Admin Authentication”.

Issue logged here;

Written by sumofungus

December 12, 2009 at 12:00 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

ITV3 and ITV4 didnt work on mythTV

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I only recently noticed that ITV3 and 4 were not working following the national retune earlier in the year. turns out that there were duplicate entries in the channels table. The listings were still being shown when scheduling programs, but the Program Guide always showed as “Unknown”.

i stuck a suffix on the channel name field in the database using mysql-query-analyser so that I could identify them in backend setup. I then used backend setup to delete them.

Written by sumofungus

December 4, 2009 at 10:11 PM

Posted in Uncategorized