Aug 082013

Experimenting with Spotify, throw (Sony), DLNA, uPnP and knowing that my Squeezebox server is something that will obsolete in a while, I found something that might just be right. Of course it does not have the nice hardware like the Squeezebox itself, but I get some stuff in return.

I found Plex. It is a mediaserver that you run on a computer in your home. It indexes your music, your movies, and your pictures. And with the Plex clients, you can browse and even play that content. DLNA browsing is not so surprising, but DLNA by itself does not help if the browser/client does not know how to handle a specific filetype. My phone does not know how to handle a movie in MKV format. It does not recognize my camera’s RAW format. Plex does. And it does it well.

The client app on my phone was not free, it was € 3.71 or something like US$ 5.

When connected to WiFi on my local LAN, I can play content (movies will be the main bottleneck) in any quality, even 20Mbps in 1080p is no problem. But you don’t always have your own WiFi at your disposal, that’s why you can connect your server to myPlex. On the server you enter the myPlex account information, and you enter the same credentials in the Android app. This is how they find each other, much like the Squeezebox has.
Now I can still see everything on my server, and from within the client I can choose the quality I want the data to be streamed to me. If you’re on a tight data-subscription, you can turn the quality down, but when that is of no concern you can turn it up as much as you like (or as much as your provider lets you).

Just tested all this, and tonight in the restaurant I could show a movie in full HD with subtitles. Over just 3G. Don’t worry, it was just a test, we had a lovely dinner with no movies ;-)

Aug 022013

I never knew that there was Linux support for SQLServer, but it turns out that there is a JDBC 4.0 driver for it that can be used in GeoServer.

From the download, put sqljdbc4.jar in the tomcat/lib directory if you only want JNDI connections, or in the GEOSERVER/WEB-INF/lib directory if you want connections that can be defined in GeoServer as well.
Download the sqlserver plugin for GeoServer, and put the jar file (in my case gt-jdbc-sqlserver-9.3.jar) into the GEOSERVER/WEB-INF/lib directory.

Now restart Tomcat (or just the GeoServer webapp if you don’t want JNDI connections). Now create a new store. Be sure to open up port 1433 on your Windows firewall, or otherwise GeoServer can’t reach it.

Jul 212012

My mail is now running on the server again, not the Synology. The Synology does a good job, but the spamfilters are not what I like them to be. It marks mail as spam by adding “**SPAM**” to the subject line and listing how much spampoints the message got. Not what I want. I want an unaltered mailmessage in my spambox, or no message at all. I used to have that with Postfix/Postgrey/Amavis/Spamassassin.


I installed iRedMail, basically an installer layer over the standard Linux mailcomponents. Installing is done in about 2 minutes, switching of greylisting took me more time to figure out how…. Thanks people, for such a great product.

Jun 182012

On a side note, my desktop PC no longer runs Linux (OpenSuSE). I’ve had it with it. There’s always something that doesn’t work. Or that keeps crashing. Or that suddenly stops working until a reboot. Sound support sucks. After every kernel update I had to do a manual install of the NVidia drivers to get X running. Always waiting for the X64 versions, since the Linux community still thinks we all run 32-bit computers (same on Windows, but at least that let’s me run 32-bit programs without problems).

I bought a new videocard (a Sapphire HD7970 to be exact), bought an SSD (OCZ Vertex4 128GB) and switched to Windows 7. Everything works. Period. And I can now use Adobe software, so I bought Adobe Photoshop Lightroom to finally being able to organize my pictures (lastest count: over 26000) the way I like it (F-spot and Picasa are nice, but not more than that).

Main reason for the videocard was gaming of course. Racing in the first place, FPS as a close second. Bought Deus Ex Human Revolution (FPS-ish) today, more to follow.

Mar 162012

Yesterday I upgraded from 11.4 to OpenSUSE 12.1. I’m not fond of the new Gnome interface, but everything works, so I’ll get used to it. What didn’t work (in one go) was the squeezeboxserver. I had to:

ln -s /usr/lib/perl5/vendor_perl/Slim/ /usr/lib/perl5/vendor_perl/5.14.2/Slim

as found on this page.

Jul 132011

The problem of self-thinking repositories like Ubuntu has (this server runs Ubuntu) is that you cannot always upgrade to the latest version of the software you use, without doing a OS-upgrade. I cannot upgrade WordPress any further because I cannot update PHP to the minimum required version. It’s not in the repositories.

So, I guess this is the point where I have to say: the 32-bit Ubuntu installation running on 64-bit hardware is long overdue its update, mainly because the upgrade means: complete re-installation. You cannot upgrade 32-bit to 64-bit. Perhaps later this week. I’ve got a spare 1TB disk here, now all I have to decide is which distro it’s going to be. Ubuntu again, or perhaps OpenSuSE like my desktop?

Jun 262011

I was frustrated about not having Firefox 4 on my desktop, so last week I decided to upgrade OpenSuSE. I still used 11.2, so I figured I’d upgrade in two steps. First to 11.3, second to 11.4.

The upgrade to 11.3 went rather smoothly, apart from the fact that I did forget to include the NVidia repositories, so I did not get X up and running the first time. No biggie.

The upgrade to 11.4 should be simpler, I guessed, since I just succesfully upgraded to 11.3. To my surprise, I could not even get the system booted. The problem? For some reason my drives all got mixed up, so the /dev/sd[abcde] references where all wrong. What I eventually ended up doing, was a cat from the grub/menu.lst, sed-ing the correct /dev/disk/by-id-references in it, so it booted. Next I could “vi” my fstab, and changed all the references there. Reboot again. Pffffff….. Now it works.

Couple of things though. To use samba-shares, in 11.4 you have to disable Novell’s AppArmor, since there seems to be a bug that effects samba.

Another thing is the squeezebox server software. I had to actually uninstall and reinstall (a newer version while at it) it, to get it working again.

VMPlayer needed a higher version as well, but that was not a problem at all.

So, I now run 11.4.