That Was Fun

Wednesday night, just before bed, I decided to update the web-server. The update failed with a file error. Apt-get normally doesn’t have file errors so I opened up the system logs and noticed some disturbing news. The log was filled with

hda: dma_intr: status=0x51 { DriveReady SeekComplete Error }
hda: dma_intr: error=0x40 { UncorrectableError }, LBAsect=69, sector=4
end_request: I/O error, dev 16:01 (hdc), sector 4

hard drive errors. D’oh!

Right about that time Fredd called to say my site was “jacked.” I copied all the files that I could read to my local machine, then Fredd entered a ticket to have the machine re-kicked.

The hard drive in the server was replaced and the machine reimaged while I slept the night away. I woke up with a fresh install of Debian Woody. Unfortunately, Debian Woody isn’t new enough for me and the hosting company doesn’t do the testing releases. So I had to upgrade
to Sarge and reconfigure the machine before I went to work.

Mail is the most important thing, it was configured first. All I had to do was install the mail packages and copy over my configuration files. I moved on to the web-server. This should have been easy too.

But, yes there is a but, that is why the web-site has been unavailable. First, I wanted to take this chance to upgrade to Apache 2 and move all the configuration files to one location. I had everything set up and ready to go. I needed to leave for work and only had to start the web-server before I left. Unfortunately, WordPress just keep displaying a blank page. No errors, no warnings, just a blank page.

I was out of time, so I decided to fix it later. I still couldn’t fix Apache 2 so I decided to go back to good ol’ Apache 1.3. This didn’t work either. The same packages that worked days before, no longer functioned.

Two days later I found a post that described the problem and gave a solution. Turns out Debian’s PHP package doesn’t enable the module for mysql by default. You have to edit




and change the line that says



restart apache, or apache2, using

/etc/init.d/apache restart


/etc/init.d/apache2 restart

and you are back in business.

Spam, Spam, Spam

I moved all my e-mail accounts to Fredd’s server and set up SpamAssassin to capture spam. So far, I have received very little spam despite using these accounts for all of my mail correspondence. Meanwhile, the account that I never use any more over at Time Warner is getting one hundred plus spam messages a day. SpamAssassin is doing a good job of filtering out that crap but I still have abandoned usage of the Road Runner mail account. I only have the account set up so I can find any service related mails from Time Warner that I may need..


Today is __Dusty Jones Day__, I am the ripe old age of 32 and can begin my journey through the Rolling Rock™ year.


Fredd’s wonderful employer, offered him an amazing deal on a server. I talked Fredd into getting a Linux server and have taken on the admin responsibilities. My limited availability, time-wise, has meant that set-up has taken a lot longer than it should have. But finally I have configured Exim and Apache to my liking, and have moved all my domains over to their new permanent home.

PHP Markdown

John Gruber wrote an awesome Perl script called Markdown that allows blog entries to be written in the old school usenet and plain text e-mail way.

A PHPified WordPress plugin of the same is included with WordPress or, for the latest and greatest, look to the official home of the PHP Markdown plugin.

_Note: The preceding announcement is to help me remember where I found the latest and greatest PHP Markdown plugin, you my technophobic reader, may disregard this post._

We've Moved

Easy things are easy and hard things are possible.

That is the Perl mantra. The easy thing of moving my site from a custom Template::Toolkit
based site over to the CMS d’jour was much more difficult than anticipated.

I wrote scripts to parse my articles, photgraphs, and photo albums. Then I learned enough
PHP to write a custom plug-in to manage all my photographs and photo galleries.

I like how easy it was to learn PHP and create my “Ansel”
plug-in, but that doesn’t stop me from wishing I could have written it in Perl.

All the links, articles, and photographs should be here. All the links should work. If you “clicky-clicky” on something and it doesn’t work, please let me know.

Thank you, that is all.


It’s been almost 30 days since I last updated this site. Some may
think that I have simply fallen off earth. Others may think, or are
hoping, that I have been abducted by space aliens. The truth is that
none of the aforementioned doomsday scenarios have come to
pass. Instead, I am my own victim.

At work I have been busy getting my unrulely and overwhelming project
back on the road to success. At times, coding this project is tedious
and mind numbingly boring. Other times doing something clever and
non-obvious makes the job fun again.

At home I have been busy with household chores. We have moved the
office from upstairs to downstairs. This move has resulted in more
space in Hailey’s room because the big person’s bed has been moved to
the Longhorn Guest Room (fka the old office). We are now ready to
accommodate guests, should any decide to venture to this area. We now
have more space in the office for books and can begin to purchase
reading material once more.

Hailey continues to change at her incredibly alarming pace. She can
understand complete and complex phrases. Pick up the paper and take it
to the trash, results in an action that resembles the phrase. She can
tell you, with her albeit limited vocabulary, what she wants. “Up
please,” is my current favorite phrase. To hear it would absolutely
melt your heart.

Hailey has moved from her crib to a toddler bed. Going to bed now
seems to take forever. Eventually this too will be easy and second
nature. For now though, going to bed seems to be the most difficult
thing in our day.

Over the weekend we were outside in the back yard when Hailey started
saying ball, ball, ball. I had to tell Hailey that there is no ball
back here. I shouldn’t have been so quick to jump to my
conclusion. When I looked up from what I was doing I noticed that one
of the neighbors kids had lobed a beach ball over the fence and there
was, in fact, a ball in the backyard. I guess she told me, I’m sure it
won’t be the only time that she is right and I am wrong.

Hailey's Swag

Now you can buy Hailey gear and merchandise from the exclusive and
private [Shop Dustacio][1] store. No really. Choose the [t-shirt][2]
or the [lunch box][3]. Each is under $20.



Canon has notified me that my [camera repair][1] is not covered under
warranty, but they will fix it for free as a one-time courtesy
repair. I’ll take that.

Hailey has been able to stand unsupported for a while now, but tonight
she stood on her own in the middle of the living room for the longest
that I have ever seen. We might have reached 45 seconds. What makes
this remarkable is what she was doing while she stood there. She was
shaking her butt up and down, just as she does when she dances, and
she wasn’t losing her balance. She finally fell down when she took a
step towards the couch.

Any day now she will be walking and we won’t be able to keep up.


Debian Sid

It has been a while since I have switched Linux distributions, so
today I installed Debian Sid. I have over 21GB of data in my home
directory and don’t have a good way to back that up, so I installed
Sid on top of Fedora Core 1. This was not the standard run of the mill
install and created some problems I wouldn’t have had if I was able to
format the drive and start from scratch. After figuring out the way
the new Debian installer named disks I was able to move the old fedora
root partition information into a safe backup directory. Then I
allowed the installer to do its thing. I had to abort the default
options a couple of times, mainly to manually update the
apt/sources.list to install Sid instead of Sarge, and to install grub
instead of lilo. So far I’m digging the apt-get way of installing
packages, and the fact that almost everything I have ever wanted to
install is available as a Debian package including XGalaga.

I went with Sid over Potato, or Sarge because the others don’t don’t
have new enough packages for my taste. I thought about installing
Gentoo again, but I couldn’t bring myself to sit through the
compilation process again. My machine isn’s fast enough to wait
through an entire Gnome build.