All posts for the month May, 2009

I just read an entry on the Bad Astronomy Blog and it reminded me about the Galileoscope which is a really cool project to build an distribute a smallish telescope in recognition of Galileo’s first views of the heavens.

My order for two just went in. One for me and one as a random gift to a parent, child, or teacher.

It isn’t that expensive ($37 total for me) and it will be a nice thing to have.

Oh, and Happy Friday!

Newest Toy

I picked up this beauty yesterday down in San Antonio.

2010 Mercury Milan Hybrid

2010 Mercury Milan Hybrid

It is a 2010 Mercury Milan Hybrid. Not fully loaded (no navigation) but lots of fun toys. 😎

Why San Antonio? They had it in stock, I got it below sticker and the dealers around here wanted $1500 over sticker.

Recently I found the need to clone and configure some Windows 2008 Server machines. The version of VMware Infrastructure that was previously installed does not support that particular OS. In fact it still called it “Longhorn”. Time for an upgrade!

I downloaded the newest build (Update 4 as of the time of this post) and did the following steps to ensure a successful upgrade:

  • Unpacked the ZIP file downloaded from VMware.
  • Backed up my MS SQL database. Our database is housed on a separate machine, but the GUI has a simple backup option. I did a full backup which only took a couple of minutes.
  • I did not run the full installer. This looked like it was going to do an install and not an upgrade. I don’t want to have to redo any configuration.
  • Ran the VMware-vcserver.exe installer from the vpx directory.
  • When this is mostly complete, it will ask to run the database upgrade installer. This update requires some schema changes so I stepped though that as well.
  • When it was complete, I ran the Vmware-viclient.exe installer. This will update the actual client software.

When I finished running those couple of installers I was able to fire of VMware Infrastructure Client, login and see that I can now create a new VM from a Win2K8 template.

Of course this is not without a problem, I cannot use that configuration to join the domain- and I don’t have the domain password to do it myself.

I am going to give Ruby on Rails a whirl over the next couple of months, so I built a CentOS 5.3 virtual machine to try it out on. This post deals with the installation and getting a simple application to work.

I am going to install ruby from source- which may not be optimal from a maintenance standpoint.

First install the pre-requisite packages:
> sudo yum install gcc zlib zlib-devel openssl-devel -y

Then download, compile, and install ruby (1.8.7 is the latest as of this post). I am installing it into my $HOME/ruby directory and will add that to my path:
> mkdir ruby; cd ruby
> wget
> tar xzvf ruby-1.8.7.tar.gz
> cd ruby-1.8.7
> ./configure –prefix=$HOME/ruby –enable-pthreads
> make
> make install
> cd ext/openssl
> ruby extconf.rb
> make
> make install

Now we need RubyGems. 1.3.3 is the latest as of post time
> cd ruby
> wget
> tar xzvf rubygems-1.3.3.tgz
> cd rubygems-1.3.3
> ruby setup.rb
> gem install rails –include-dependencies
> gem install termios –include-dependencies
> gem install mongrel –include-dependencies
> gem install mongrel-cluster –include-dependencies *no mongrel-cluster?*
> gem install capistrano –include-dependencies
> gem install mysql *holding on mysql install*

Test your rails installation:
> cd $HOME
> mkdir projects
> rails myrailsapp
> cd myrailsapp
> ruby script/server

The simple application should now be running on localhost port 3000. Fire up your web browser and browse away.

My first Rails application is running and it didn’t take that long. Then again- it does very little.

Got my 40 back!

You may recall from this post that I complained about the inaccuracy of my Smith and Wesson pistol. Well, being lazy it took me a long time to send it in for repairs. As it turns out, the process was painless. I FedEx-ed it overnight to a guy here in Texas (which S&W paid for) and it was repaired and sent back to me. Total turn around was under two weeks and cost me nothing but a little time. He adjusted the trigger and replaced a part before test firing it 25 times.

I have not brought it to the range yet so I don’t know how it went- but it looks promising. I still have yet to fire the Hi-Point with the new ATI stock either, so a range trip is on the agenda in short order.