HowTo: Flashing Your System BIOS Under Linux

Posted on in Categories Hardware, Howto, Linux last updated August 31, 2006

The BIOS is Basic Input/Output System used by a computer, which embedded on a chip on a computer’s motherboard. It is used to controls various devices connected to your computer. When you turn on the computer, the BIOS starts up and perform a Power-On Self Test (POST). The BIOS will check all devices connected to your computer such as the CPU, RAM, the video card, the sound card and so on. Once the post test has

Open BIOSes for Linux

Posted on in Categories Beyond nixCraft, Linux last updated August 31, 2006

Modern systems need not be held back by a legacy boot process (read as DOS).

Peter Seebach writes about alternative BIOS for PC.

From the article, “On many systems, a large portion of boot time goes into providing legacy support for MS-DOS. Various projects, including LinuxBIOS and Open Firmware, are trying to replace the proprietary BIOS systems with streamlined pieces of code able to do only what is necessary to get a Linux® kernel loaded and running. This article gives a brief overview of the field.”

Read more at IBM developerworks

How to Publish Multiple Websites Using a Single Tomcat Web Application

Posted on in Categories Beyond nixCraft, Links last updated August 31, 2006

This is nifty way to publish multiple websites using a single tomcat application.

While the idea of mapping several names onto one Apache instance with VirtualHost directives is well known, what do you do when you are serving web apps with Tomcat? Satya Komatineni has both the code and the configs that you’ll need to make this work.

FTA, “Knowledge Folders is a web application that holds and displays content for multiple users. I had been wondering if I could expose the content from this single web application as multiple websites with their own domain names. Could I use virtual hosts to do this? Or would I need to use reverse proxies? How and where would I register domain names? What entries would I need to make in Tomcat configuration files? How would I handle emails for these independent domains? What else would I need to do in my web application? What would the end result look like?”

Read more at onjava.com

Howto get Linspire free CNR service account

Posted on in Categories Linux, News last updated August 30, 2006
Linspire Logo

No you don’t have to apply any hack simply register yourself at their site. Now Linspire is offering free CNR service to all users.

But what is CNR?
CNR stands for “click and run“. It is a FREE software delivery service designed for Linspire users that makes it easy to install Linux software.

With the CNR Service you can install more than 2,000 FREE Linux software titles direct from the CNR Warehouse – all with just a single click.

In fact, the CNR Service is the easiest way to install Linux software. Simply click the software you want and it installs on your computer and is ready to run.

This is good move, IMPO. They will gain more customers.

=> register yourself to get free CNR service
=> More info @ Offical site (via Linux.com)

ImageMagick How-tos,hacks, tutorial collection

Posted on in Categories Links, Linux, Linux desktop last updated August 30, 2006
ImageMagick How-tos,hacks, tutorial collection

Excellent set of ImageMagick hacks and howtos.

ImageMagick is an image manipulation software suite for a wide variety of formats, released under a General Public License compatible free license.

From the site, “This web pages presents a set of examples using ImageMagick from the command line. However they are also examples of what can be done using the ImageMagick Application Programming Interface (API). As such these pages should be the first stop for IM users after reading the terse user manuals.

Often the same questions of “How do I…” gets asked, over and over again on the network. The examples in these web pages I hope will answer most of the common ‘how-to’ questions that arise.

Read how-tos and tutorials at Examples of ImageMagick Usage webpage.

Linux will get buried by Apple and Windows

Posted on in Categories Linux, News last updated August 30, 2006

Tom Yager thinks Microsoft and Apple aren’t sending Linux away, just underground to do the job it was made for..

From Slashdot story, “At the end of the decade, we’ll find that Apple UNIX has overtaken commercial Linux as the second most popular general client and server computing platform behind Windows.’ That’s not a gloom-and-doom omen for the ever-popular Linux kernel, though, he stresses. While Apple and Microsoft will grapple for dominance of client and server spaces, Linux will be ‘the de facto choice for embedded solutions.’ And by ’embedded,’ Yager means ‘specialized.’ With a push of a button and a flip of switch, he predicts, you’ll be able to create a configured database and a mated J2EE server — all thanks to Linux.”

Read more at infoworld

I have only one problem with his predication … there is no logic behind predication. Author failed to give any valid logic. Another factor Apple is expensive as compare to normal x86 systems.

Slashdot discussion

Get to know NetBSD – an operating system that travels

Posted on in Categories Links last updated August 29, 2006

NetBSD is best known for its portability and quality of design 🙂 It is often used in embedded systems.

FTA, “NetBSD has an interesting architecture, which is often taken for granted and rarely commented on outside Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD) circles. The system’s well thought-out design allows for wide hardware support, a small footprint, stability, and security. NetBSD’s unique features include a new paradigm for handling device drivers and other interesting innovations.”

Read more at IBM developerworks

Linux: Boost application performance using asynchronous I/O

Posted on in Categories C Programming, Linux last updated August 29, 2006

Learn when and how to use the POSIX AIO API under Linux to boost application performance.

Linux asynchronous I/O is a part of Linux kernel 2.6.. The basic idea behind AIO is to allow a process to initiate a number of I/O operations without having to block or wait for any to complete. At some later time, or after being notified of I/O completion, the process can retrieve the results of the I/O.

FTA, “The most common input/output (I/O) model used in Linux is synchronous I/O. After a request is made in this model, the application blocks until the request is satisfied. This is a great paradigm because the calling application requires no central processing unit (CPU) while it awaits the completion of the I/O request. But in some cases there’s a need to overlap an I/O request with other processing. The Portable Operating System Interface (POSIX) asynchronous I/O (AIO) application program interface (API) provides this capability. In this article, get an overview of the API and see how to use it.”

Read more at IBM developerworks

Lighttpd web server and php eAccelerator cache problem

Posted on in Categories lighttpd, Linux, php, Troubleshooting last updated August 29, 2006

eAccelerator is a fork of MMCache which provide an opcode cache and encode i.e. it increases performance of php based application by providing web (content) caching for dynamic apps.

Recently one of Linux box, which runs Lighttpd, started to sever php pages very slowly. First, I thought server might be severing large amount of request but netstat just return over 600 connection:
$ netstat -vtn | wc -l

Output:

649

System load was under control:
$ uptime
Output:

12:09:32 up 87 days, 11:58,  1 user,  load average: 1.08, 1.19, 1.06

No zombie process were found. Next I had gone through server logs and error logs and found nothing special. I did restarted both Lightttpd and MySQL servers. Memory usage was under control. HTML pages was loading fine, it was php application. All php based application was taking time to load (but no connection time out error). It was clear something was wrong with PHP.

So I started to investigate all php related installed extension. I found eAccelerator installed on system. I went to /chroot/var/cache/php-eaccelerator and I found over 5000+ files.

I had just deleted all cached files and voila! My problem was solved php started to work normally:
# rm -f *
# /etc/init.d/lighttpd restart

I guess now I need to write a script that will delete cahce on regular basis.

Book review: SpamAssassin – A Practical Guide to Integration and Configuration

Posted on in Categories Book Review last updated August 29, 2006
SpamAssassin - A Practical Guide to Integration and Configuration

Spam is unsolicited emails with advertisements, which costs money. According to one survey spam costs up to $1000 per employee per year. Spam is send without the permission of the recipients. According to wikipedia, in June 2006 55 billion spam emails send per day (see MAAWG Issues First Global Email Spam Report for more information).

Computer users can avoid e-mail spam in several ways like end user use e-mail filtering and email server administrators run special software such as SpamAssassin to trap e-mail spam at the mail server level itself.

The book SpamAssassin is a practical guide to configure and install one of the most popular open source effective spam filter software.
Continue reading “Book review: SpamAssassin – A Practical Guide to Integration and Configuration”