Writing blog with Lynx

I am working on this entry using a text base browser called Lynx. I have not used Lynx in a long time. I have never used it to do anything like this before using Lynx.

I usually use Lynx at the command line to browse to web sites to download RPM files.

Google ads are gone

I removed the ads from this site today.  I was experimenting with learning how to set them up.  I am going to take a more active role in writing on this site so I do not want the ads for now.

Cedar Park to Austin Bike Commute

I rode my bike into Austin on my inaugural Cedar Park to Austin bike commute.  It was so cold that when I got 3 miles from my house I had to turn around and go back and get my winter gloves.  This morning it was 48 degrees but when I got to 20 MPH my fingers started to hurt.  I had no other problems except that I have the usual sore butt from not riding in 8 months.  That will resolve itself by riding more.

Fitness Goals for 2009

After running 100k (62 miles) on a trail at Bandera Texas I have found a void in my trail running training .  so this weekend I dusted off my bike and on Saturday I rode 10 miles. Today I drove my truck down to the 24 Hour Fitness near UT and rode my bike 23.5 miles back to Cedar Park.  Tomorrow I’ll do my first bike commute in 2009.

While I was riding back home facing mild head winds I thought about my training goal for 2008 and how I ran 1,100 miles instead of 1,000 miles.  I decided that this year I would plan on running 1,000 miles and riding my bike 2,000 miles.  I have never kept track of my yearly mileage since I moved to Texas.  When I lived in Portland, Oregon I rode 3,000 to 4,000 miles for several years.  Bike commuting is the key for me to do that sort of miles in one year.

So I plan on riding my bike a few times a week and running on the weekends and see how I fell. I am glad that I have reduced my weight by 20 pounds and lost several inches off my waist and theigs.  I really noticed my trim legs when I rode my bike because there was more clearance between my theighs and my saddle than the last time that I rode it 8 months ago.

Virtual server

I am planning my next server.  I want to build a server that is optimized for running virtualized computers and large disk storage. I’m using this post to take some notes. With all of this information in one place my goal is for it to help me design my next computer. There is a lot of information about computer parts on the Internet and this is the source of this information.

Some of my friends have asked why I build my own computers and I always reply because it is fun and I learn a lot. I rarely document my design process so here is a place to watch how I do it.

Intel® Xeon® Processor 7000 Sequence

These processors are for servers

Processor number? L2 cache L3 cache Clock speed Front side bus System type Power Number of cores
45-nm technology
X7460 9MB 16MB 2.66 GHz 1066 MHz MP 130W 6
L7455 9MB 12MB 2.13 GHz 1066 MHz MP 65W 6
L7445 6MB 12MB 2.13 GHz 1066 MHz MP 50W 4
E7450 9MB 12MB 2.40 GHz 1066 MHz MP 90W 6
E7440 6MB 16MB 2.40 GHz 1066 MHz MP 90W 4
E7430 6MB 12MB 2.13 GHz 1066 MHz MP 90W 4
E7420 6MB 8MB 2.13 GHz 1066 MHz MP 90W 4
65-nm technology
X7350 8MB 0 2.93 GHz 1066 MHz MP 130W 4
L7345 8MB 0 1.86 GHz 1066 MHz MP 50W 4
E7340 8MB 0 2.40 GHz 1066 MHz MP 80W 4
E7330 6MB 0 2.40 GHz 1066 MHz MP 80W 4
E7320 4MB 0 2.13 GHz 1066 MHz MP 80W 4
E7310 4MB 0 1.60 GHz 1066 MHz MP 80W 4
E7220 8MB 0 2.93 GHz 1066 MHz MP 80W 2
E7210 8MB 0 2.40 GHz 1066 MHz MP 80W 2

I will go with the cheapest 45nm quad core with 12mb L3 cache, the Xeon E7430.  Now I’ll search for a motherboard.

Intel® Xeon® Processor 5000 Sequence

These processors are for workstations.

Processor Number? Cache Clock Speed Front Side Bus System Type Power Dual-core Quad-core
45-nm technology
X5492 12MB 3.40 GHz 1600 MHz DP 150W   checkmark
X5470 12MB 3.33 GHz 1333 MHz DP 120W   checkmark
X5482 12MB 3.20 GHz 1600 MHz DP 120W   checkmark
X5472 12MB 3.00 GHz 1600 MHz DP 120W   checkmark
E5472 12MB 3.00 GHz 1600 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
E5462 12MB 2.80 GHz 1600 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
X5460 12MB 3.16 GHz 1333 MHz DP 120W   checkmark
X5450 12MB 3.00 GHz 1333 MHz DP 120W   checkmark
E5450 12MB 3.00 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
E5440 12MB 2.83 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
L5430 12MB 2.66 GHz 1333 MHz DP 50W   checkmark
E5430 12MB 2.66 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
L5420 12MB 2.50 GHz 1333 MHz DP 50W   checkmark
E5420 12MB 2.50 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
L5410 12MB 2.33 GHz 1333 MHz DP 50W   checkmark
E5410 12MB 2.33 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
E5405 12MB 2.00 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W   checkmark
X5272 6MB 3.40 GHz 1600 MHz DP 80W checkmark  
X5270 6MB 3.50 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W checkmark  
X5260 6MB 3.33 GHz 1333 MHz DP 80W checkmark  
L5240 6MB 3.00 GHz 1333 MHz DP 40W checkmark  
E5205 6MB 1.86 GHz 1066 MHz DP 65W checkmark  

For a 3D expert system Intel recommends this Xeon X5482 configuration.

The motherboard is a dual processor with LGA771 socket design.


High Power Efficiency Platform with SAS Support Ready

ASUS new server board DSEB-DG/SAS is based on 45nm Intel® Xeon® 5400/5300/5200/5100 processor with the green design of 90%+ power efficiency. Featured with leading-edge technology including FSB 1600MHz, FB-DIMM 800MHz, PCI-Express Gen2 x16 and SAS support, the DSEB-DG/SAS is the most out-performance server board which is ideal for enterprise-class and computing demanding applications.

Asus DSEB-DG/SAS mother board
Asus DSEB-DG/SAS mother board

Motherboard Specifications

Processor 2 * LGA771 sockets support:
Quad-Core Intel® Xeon® Processor 5300/5400 Series Processors
Dual-Core Intel® Xeon® Processor 5100/5200 Series Processors
FSB FSB 667/1066/1333/1600MHz
Core Logic Intel® 5400 Memory Controller Hub (MCH)
Intel® 6321ESB I/O Controller Hub (ICH)
Memory 8 * Fully-Buffered DIMM DDR2 533/667/800 Reg. ECC, Maximum up to 64 GB
1.5V (Low Voltage) & 1.8V supported
Storage Interface Intel® 6321ESB support 6 SATA2 300MB/s ports
LSI® 1068 PCI-X SAS controller support 8 SAS ports
RAID Support Intel® 6321ESB: 6 SATA2 300MB/s ports
Intel Matrix Storage (for Windows only)
(Support software RAID 0, 1, 10 & 5)   

LSI® 1068 PCI-X 8-port SAS controller:
LSI® Integrated RAID 0, 1, 1E support
Optional LSI® ZCR(Zero-Channel-RAID) PCI-X card:
(For upgrade to support hardware RAID 0, 1, 10, 5, 50)

Intel® 6321+ Intel® 82563EB Dual Port GbE LAN
2 * Intel® 82573L GbE LAN
Onboard Gfx XGI Z9s VGA Controller / 32MB DDR VRAM
Expansion Slot
2 * PCI-E x16 Gen2
1 * PCI-E x8 (x8 link)
2 * PCI-X 100/133 MHz
1 * PCI 32bit/33 MHz
Form Factor SSI EEB 3.61, 12” x 13”

Here is a specification for a Dell server.






Base Unit:  Quad Core Xeon Processor E53102x4MB Cache, 1.60GHz, 1066MHz FSB, PE 1900 (222-6792)
Processor:  Quad Core Xeon 2nd Processor E5310, 2x4MB Cache, 1.60GHz 1066MHz FSB, PE1900 (311-6842)
Memory:  16GB 667MHz (8x2GB), Dual Ranked DIMMs, Spare-Row (311-7194)
Keyboard:  No Keyboard Selected (310-5017)
Video Card:  LOM NIC is TOE Ready (430-2966)
Hard Drive:  HD Multi-Select (341-4158)
Hard Drive Controller:  PERC 5/i, Integrated Controller Card (341-3018)
Floppy Disk Drive:  No Floppy Drive (341-3052)
Operating System:  No Operating System (420-6320)
Mouse:  Mouse Option None (310-0024)
NIC:  Intel PRO 1000 VT Quad Port (430-2687)
TBU:  No Tape Drive (341-4205)
CD-ROM or DVD-ROM Drive:  DVD-RW Drive, SATA (313-7135)
Cable:  1900 HARD DRIVE CABLE FOR MORE THAN 4 HDDs (310-8432)
Documentation Diskette:  Electronic Documentation and OpenManage DVD Kit (310-8292)
Feature  Integrated SAS/SATA RAID 0 PERC 5/i Integrated (341-4018)
Service:  Dell Hardware Warranty, Extended Year(s) (985-3298)
Service:  Dell Hardware Warranty Plus Onsite Service Initial Year (985-3307)
Service:  Pro Support for IT: Next Business Day Onsite Service After Problem Diagnosis, 2Year Extended (987-2462)
Service:  ProSupport for IT: 7×24 HW / SW Tech Support and Assistance for Certified IT Staff, 3 Year (987-2502)
Service:  Pro Support for IT: Next Business Day Onsite Service After Problem Diagnosis, Initial Year (987-6940)
Service:  Thank you choosing Dell ProSupport. For tech support, visit http://support.dell.com/ProSupport or call 1-800-945-33 (989-3439)
Installation:  On-Site Installation Declined (900-9997)
Misc:  Power Cord, NEMA 5-15P to C14,15 amp, wall plug, 10 feet / 3 meter (310-8509)
  500GB 7.2K RPM Serial ATA 3Gbps 3.5-in Cabled Hard Drive (341-3875) – Quantity 6



Too Much Inside Time

The last two weeks have been spent inside mostly. I have not run during this time. My personal time on weekends has been divided between doing volunteer support for the Rocky Racoon race in Huntsville and fixing my computer. I have not been drawing on Friday either so this month has been quite a change from my routine.

I have regained some of the lost abilities by re-building my home server with CentOS. I really like using Linux and I hope that I can keep it as my host operating system. My experiment with using virtual PCs is proving to be very time consuming to set up. I will spend one more day working on completing the project. My beta test with a small Vista virtual PC was successful. My goal was to see if I could build a Vista box and then have access to it using remote desktop from Sylvia’s computer. I completed this test last night. Now I will build a production virtual PC tomorrow and she will use it to work on her landscape projects.

This weekend I will get out and run.  I also plan to ride my bike at least one mile.

Linux and RAID5, lessons learned

After a long absence from the Linux community I am disappointed about the lack of support for easy RAID5 in Ubuntu (Debian). I spent about 3 days trying to get RAID 5 to work under Ubuntu with my onboard Fake Raid controller from Intel.  What I learned is that my next purchase will be a real hardware based RAID controller from 3Ware.  I have avoided these add on controlers because of the cost, and now I realize that they are worth it.  I added RAID card into a client’s computer about a month ago and installed Windows XP on it without any problems.  The 3Ware cards are supported in all OSs including Linux and Vista.

I am installing CentOs 5 (RedHat clone) using software RAID.  This is what I had on the computer yease ago.  I say this is the same computer, but in reality the only thing that is original is the Antec Tower case and fans.  I had to compromise and put the boot partition on a single drive because I did not hade a drive to do a RAID1 configuration.  I will regret thsi in about a year.

My plan for this computer is to install VMware server and then install virtual machines using the operating systems that I like.  If I have to rebuild the host computer I cna off-load the virtual machine images and then re-install them after rebuilding the computer.

So this evening at 7:45 PM I have a Cent0s 5.2 system. I have never run any virtualzation software so I am trying gemu which comes with CentOS.  I am installing Vista and I hope that my computer with 4 GB of memory will be enough to work.

My home computer will be a Linux box again

About two weeks ago my last disk died in my RAID5 on my home computer.  I originally built the computer when I lived in Portland Oregon in 2002.  I started out with three Western Digital 80 GB hard drives in a software RAID5 running Mandrake Linux. The first upgrade was a new main board and three 160 GB drives and Windows XP.  I did this upgrade in 2006 and kept the case.  The third upgrade was a new Dual Core main board 1000 watt power supply and Vista.  I kept the three 160 GB drives.  In 2008 two 160gb drives failed and hte last one fialed in January 2009.  When the first two drives failed I replaced them with 500 GB drives.  Drives have become really cheap now days.

Now I am rebuilding the computer again.  I have removed all of the 160 GB drives and two 80 GB drives.  I decided that I want to go back to a Linux OS on the computer and use a virtual computer software to run Windows.  I will use VMware or something else to get Windows Vista to work. I am downloading Ubuntu and I will install it tonight.

Reget does it again. I downloaded desktop by mistake and it took 45 min. I decided to install Reget on the Dell laptop and the same size ISO is going to take 20 min. I am going with Ubuntu 8.10 server because is is based on Debian and is supported by Vmware. Most of the other distributions that VMware supports are the enterprise versions which cost money. I know that I will be hacking and doing custom builds soon, but at least I want to start off with a Linux that has documented support for VMware Server which is what I will be running first. I want to install Windows 7 and see what it looks like.

While I was trying to install Vista on a clean machine (failed 3 times) I wrote down all of the versions of MS operating systems that I have used.

  1. MS-DOS versions 3 to 6
  2. Windows 3.1
  3. Windows for Workgroups
  4. Windows NT
  5. Windows 95
  6. Windows 98
  7. Windows 2000
  8. Windows XP
  9. Windows Vista

The next version of Windows is Windows 7.  I am not sure how MS came up with the number 7. According to my list the next version of Windows is Windows 9.

I am watching Craig

I like watching Craig Furguson on the Late Late Show.  When I can not stay up late I watch the recordings that are on my computer.  I enjoy his sense of humor and the crazy way he slaps the TV camera during his monologue.  Thsi episode he has some hand puppets that are singing.