Linux Driver Development Help available from Gurus

in Categories GNU/Open source, Linux, Open source coding last updated January 30, 2007

Linux Kernel hacker Greg is offering free help for Linux driver development.

From the announcement:
Yes, that’s right, the Linux kernel community is offering all companies free Linux driver development. No longer do you have to suffer through all of the different examples in the Linux Device Driver Kit, or pick through the thousands of example drivers in the Linux kernel source tree trying to determine which one is the closest to what you need to do.

All that is needed is some kind of specification that describes how your device works, or the email address of an engineer that is willing to answer questions every once in a while. A few sample devices might be good to have so that debugging doesn’t have to be done by email, but if necessary, that can be done.

In return, you will receive a complete and working Linux driver that is added to the main Linux kernel source tree. The driver will be written by some of the members of the Linux kernel developer community (over 1500 strong and growing). This driver will then be automatically included in all Linux distributions, including the “enterprise” ones. It will be automatically kept up to date and working through all Linux kernel API changes. This driver will work with all of the different CPU types supported by Linux, the largest number of CPU types supported by any operating system ever before in the history of computing.

Free Linux Driver Development!

Run your Open Source Application in Windows Vista

in Categories GNU/Open source, Mozilla, Windows last updated January 30, 2007

Finally Windows Vista is here (no I am not going to use Windows vista). There are many users out there running open source software such as Firefox and OpenOffice. I see upgrade option available at my work place and many co-workers are upgrading to Windows Vista.

Microsoft has published a checklist of the most common OS integration points that have changed from Windows XP. So if you want to get information about modifying and deploying your Open Source apps in Microsoft Windows Vista, you should check out this blog post.

There is a Q&A style interview about the Microsoft community site as well as other resources to help you get your FOSS app Vista-ready.

(A hat tip to Todd Ogasawara)

Linux find or look for available smb shares on a server

in Categories Debian Linux, File system, Gentoo Linux, Howto, Linux, Networking, OpenBSD, RedHat/Fedora Linux, Shell scripting, Solaris, Tips, Ubuntu Linux, UNIX, Windows server last updated January 30, 2007

So how do you find out share name from Linux command line? Let us say you’ve few more servers running:

=> Windows 2000 server

=> Redhat Enterprise Linux 4.0

How do you list or look for available share on a server?

Linux comes with command called smbclient. It is a ftp-like client to access SMB/CIFS resources on servers or workstations. It offers an interface similar to that of the ftp command. Operations include things like getting files from the server to the local machine, putting files from the local machine to the server, retrieving directory information from the server and so on.

It has special option called -L. This option allows you to look at what services and shares are available on a server.

Task: Find smb share name from Linux and UNIX shell prompt

If your server name is jumbo (NetBIOS name) type:
$ smbclient -L jumbo -Uusername
$ smbclient -L jumbo -Uusername -I ip-address

Domain=[NAS02] OS=[Unix] Server=[Samba 3.0.21a]

        Sharename       Type      Comment
        ---------       ----      -------
        ADMIN$          IPC       IPC Service (SAMBA-LDAP Server)
        IPC$            IPC       IPC Service (SAMBA-LDAP Server)
        docs                 Disk      Home Directories
        Sales                Disk      Home Directories
Domain=[NAS02] OS=[Unix] Server=[Samba 3.0.21a]

        Server               Comment
        ---------            -------

        Workgroup            Master
        ---------            -------
        OFFICE                   LDAP01

Docs and Sales are two share name for my office NAS02 server.

It may prompt for a password and a list should appear on screen . The -I option may be useful if your NetBIOS names don’t match your TCP/IP DNS host names or if you are trying to reach a host on another network.

For more information refer to smbclient man page:
man smbclient

Rumor: Oracle to offer Unbreakable MySQL

in Categories GNU/Open source, MySQL, News last updated January 29, 2007

Computer Business Weblogreporting interesting news – Oracle has suggested it will offer support for the MySQL code, undercutting the company,

According to Mickos, MySQL’s chief executive officer , the database giant is planning to repeat its October 2006 Unbreakable Linux plan, which saw it undercut Red Hat with enterprise Linux support.

To be frank, I don’t know what Oracle is doing here. They already have Oracle database and now started to mess with MySQL.

Sure, competition is good for all of us. At the end of day we will see better service, IMPO.

Will Oracle launch Unbreakable MySQL?

Open Source Galvanizing the New Market Economy

in Categories GNU/Open source, News, UNIX last updated January 29, 2007

Call it a philosophy, a movement, or a methodology. Call it what you like, but open source has revolutionized the software economy, changing the way software is being built, sold, and used around the globe.

If a rising tide raises all boats, then open sourcing is the next big tide in the world of technology. Sun Executive Boardroom is pleased to present an interview with Senior Vice President of Software Marketing Peder Ulander, who joins us to discuss the myriad of doors that open sourcing opens for developers, enterprises and customers.

At the end of the day, companies generally want to have:
=> commercially-supported

=> commercially-backed

=> commercially-indemnified technologies when they go to market.

Read complete interview: Open Source Galvanizing the New Market Economy

Why Gentoo Shouldn't be on your Linux server

in Categories Gentoo Linux, Linux, Linux distribution, News last updated January 29, 2007

This blog post has some valid points:
I firmly believe in updating server software only when you need to. If you don’t need new features, and things are working, why change anything? If you update anything you will undoubtedly need to update configuration files. You will need to fix things that break in the upgrade process… This is hard with Gentoo. Gentoo wants you to change a lot of stuff. It wants to be bleeding edge.

I agree 100% with author. I always use and recommend RHEL or Debian Linux for production server. Other choice includes FreeBSD or OpenBSD.

What do you think? Do you run Gentoo on a production box?

Don’t forget to visit Gentoo forum for more views. (via /.)

Update: Check out this post by Josh – Why Gentoo is a Great Server Distribution (a Rebuttal)
PS: Someone is looking for Gentoo Admin .

Linux User does not exist – weird problem and solution

in Categories Debian Linux, Linux, RedHat/Fedora Linux, Suse Linux, Tips, Troubleshooting last updated January 28, 2007

Recently I received a support request as follows:
After adding a user using useradd command:
useradd -s /bin/false -d foo
passwd foo

Following error reported
user foo does not exist

However, after sometime user foo allowed to login. What is going on? Is my system hacked?

First I went through system password database located at /etc/passwd, /etc/shadow, /etc/group – there exists an entry for foo user.

After close investigation I found name service cache daemon (nscd). It is a daemon that provides a cache for the most common name service requests including caching of /etc/passwd file (thanks for top and lsof command for hint).

So the solution is to stop the nscd service add user and start nscd again. This time it worked.
# /etc/init.d/nscd stop
# useradd -s /bin/false -d bar
# passwd bar
# /etc/init.d/nscd start

Now bar is allowed to login immediately :).

Refer to nscd man page for detailed information (hint setup correct TTL to get rid of this problem and upgrade to latest version):
man nscd
man nscd.conf

How to install or Load Debian Linux from within Windows

in Categories Debian Linux, Download of the day, Linux desktop, Linux distribution last updated January 28, 2007

Robert Millan announced Debian Installer a win32 loader for Debian Linux. This project is inspired by Ubuntu’s install.exe project.

With this project new Debian user are allowed to install Debian from within Windows operating system. No need to burn a CD or create a new partition (reparation) to install Debain.

According to announcement:
This has a few interesting applications:

=> Migrating to Debian on hardware without CD drive (or USB boot capability).

=> Migrating to Debian for users who have no idea how to burn an ISO and/or how to configure their BIOS for CD boot.

=> Migrating a system to Debian immediately, at any time, wether we have a boot CD at hand or not.

=> Advocating Debian to Windows users. Rather than give them a CD (expensive), give them a piece of paper with an URL.
How to install or Load Debian Linux from within Windows

Download link

See more screenshots or download software from project home page (via /.).