Fedora (fc8) releases a new kernel

… and saves me a ton of work.  Tonight, I got the notification that there was a new kernel in FC8:  If you have been reading a long, you might know I was trying to roll my own kernel and modules to get my super-compact wifi usb dongle working.  Well, tonight’s kernel release includes the elusive module, zd1211rw.ko AND my sounds is working, so I am really good to go.

We’ll see how the suspend / resume works on my laptop, since that’s been a little goofy.

I got to say I feel a little put off since I’ve put so much reading into how to build a customer kernel, modules, and recompile various the modules via the SOURCE rpm’s; sprms’s.  So a good learning experince nontheless, but I am just happy that it appears that it will work.  I can spend less time polishing my hammer!

Sound on Fedora fc8… SOLVED!!!

I apologize for lack of a snappy post title. I am just giddy to get my sound working… better than I had before. In my last post regarding my sound issues:

I mentioned how I finally got the OSS sound driver to work. It worked okay… not perfect. No where near perfect. Finally, I had enough. I finally figured out how to get everything working natively.

In my previous post, I mention that I have an Azalia SB600 and it has an ALC268 chipset. I read somewhere that you can recompile the kernel modules for the ALSA drivers. I began searching for some more specific clues and found this:

# yum groupinstall “Development Tools”
# yum install mercurial
# cd /usr/src

# mkdir alsa && cd alsa
# hg clone http://hg-mirror.alsa-project.org/alsa-driver alsa-driver
# cd alsa-driver
# hg clone
http://hg-mirror.alsa-project.org/alsa-kernel alsa-kernel
# ./hgcompile && make install


I also modified the following line in modprobe.conf:

options snd-hda-intel index=0 model=toshiba

It worked! I couldn’t believe it. How easy! I spent hours on this in the past. Granted, finding this solution took some work, but I am very thankful.

Edit: 01.16.08: I happened to see others with Toshiba laptops that had sound problems over at the Fedora Forums. For reference, I have a Toshiba A215-S7411 with the ALC268 chipset.

what’s your inspiration

I’ve written in the past about things that get my creativity going. I think in my last example, I went on about Mel Brook’s History of the World, Part I. What a great movie. There are other movies that just knock my socks off. Young Frankenstein is an other example of a super creative movie. I’ll admit, I love anything that has well done, double entendre. I even like it more when I say something that is double entendre, and half the people get it, and the other half have blank looks on their faces. Hilarious… Okay, I’ll get my mind out of the gutter.

Innovation and creativity are funny things. For me, I find it can be a balancing act. There have been times in my life when I feel like I am on fire and I am really being innovative and rocking. Then, something happens, and it feels like a punch in gut and I get “thinkers block” and I am paralyzed. In the past, this paralyzed feeling has in some cases lasted years. For example, I used to try to work on my Mom’s house when I lived there. Nothing would work and I felt like a worthless handy man. I eventually gave up trying to do things around the house. Years later, I realized my shortcomings as a handyman were really lack of experience (naturally) and the builder took a lot of shortcuts. When my wife and I bought our first home (which was built in 1947), something clicked and I became the handyman that I always wanted to be.

When I was in high school and in college, I worked on my own cars. Then something happened and I became an inept mechanic and I felt like I had no business under the hood. When I had my old Mercedes diesel, (I still wish I had that car), something happened and I was back under the hood changing glow plugs and brake pads. Now, with our modern cars, (a Volvo and VW Eurovan), I am back to changing brakes pads and rotors and saving thousands of dollars in dealer repair costs and offering to help others with their cars.

Sure, part of it is confidence, but I don’t think that’s just it. I remember when I read “Zen and Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” and the only thing I remember is how the author said something along the lines of “I have a motorcycle, it makes sense to me to understand how it works and to learn how to work on it” and he said one of his friends just let the repair shop deal with the problems.

Part of it, is also just being willing to try it… figure it out… make it work. I’m lucky. My wife tolerates my experiments. I heard her tell the kids one day, “Don’t worry, Daddy can fix it. Daddy can fix anything.” Wow, not only was that a boost in my confidence, but it showed me that my family thinks I can fix anything! I felt like a Super-fix-it-man!

I’ll give you another example how this translates into my life. If you have kids and pets, you probably already know the value of a carpet shampooer. I’m not talking the professional kind you rent, rather the consumer grade ones. We’ve had one for about six years. The hose, that allows you to use the hand attachments broke where the handle tilts back. We can easily afford a new shampooer but otherwise the unit still works really well for cleaning the carpets. The other night I was out for a run and it happened to be trash night in our neighborhood. Someone was throwing out a newer version of the shampooer we have. My first thought was, “Cool, maybe I can use that hose…” and I went and gave the discarded shampooer the once over. As I titled the handle back, I saw that the hose ripped in the exact same place so I wasn’t interested.

My point with all of this, is that… well I don’t know. I guess since my family thinks I can fix anything, I feel like I can.

Back to the creativity and innovation thoughts… The other night, I was watching TV with the kids. I was really tired of cartoons so I was trying to find something we could watch, (deep sea creatures and sharks are always a big hit with the kids). In a rare occurrence, we tuned to catch the very beginning of the Pink Panther movie. I grew up with these movies and remember seeing them in the movie theater in Chicago with my Grandma. I forgot how clever and creative the beginning segments are. I’ve always like the Pink Panther cartoons. He’s very expressive and can make you laugh without saying a word. So the opening credits were great. The kids loved it. It made me think where I got my sense of humor from.

Over at Chris Brogan’s blog, he’s got a neat post about the “Bucket Meme” and it was something I was going to write about here, but my time is already short this morning so I’ll have to get it in the next post.

what’s the story, wishbone…

Man, I haven’t updated in a while but I have been dying to post something.  You know, I keep having ideas that I want to write about, then I start a draft, and either whatever I started to write is just plain wrong or I come to realize it just isn’t as important as I thought it was.   Oh well.

I’ll just shotgun all the updates I have.  Usually, I tend to write more about these topics as time marches on.

First, I feel like I lost a good friend.  My iPod died.  It really died.  I had a 40GB 4G iPod.  It was actually a HP iPod; you remember when HP resold iPods?  Me neither, it was a speck on the historic iPod timeline.  Well, I loved it and literally used it every day.  This year, the hard drive started to make click and whrring shoulds. I could bang it on the table, (don’t laugh… I read about doing that in a forum) and it would work.  Now, the hard drive is crunching and the iPod isn’t booting up.  Oh well.  Once I find a new job, I plan on getting an 8GB Nano since I like to run with my iPod.  I would like to try the Nike+ product.  A good friend told me it was really cool.  I figure that and a heart rate monitor might really make for some serious training. (Rumor has it, you don’t really need the Nike+ shoes… any shoes will do.)

I’ve been playing around with Munin and Nagios on my laptop (which is running FC8).  Again, I started to write a page about getting Munin working with Fedora and SELinux but I still don’t have it all worked out.  However, I am becoming more knowledgeable about SELinux in troubleshooting.  That’s cool.

I’ve also been continuing my Ruby on Rails education.  I love it.  I really want to be an expert.  I got a couple of personal projects on deck that should really help me solidify my foundation.  I just wish I had more time these days.

I split a crap load of wood with a log splitter (not the hydraulic kind, the kind you swing, over and over).  It felt great to do some work like that.  And now we just need some nice cold weather here in Atlanta, so we can have a fire.

We got some nice, new wheels on our 2003 VW Eurovan.  Anyone want to see pics?

I have, I guess what you would call a 2nd interview with a really cool company tomorrow, (Friday).  Wish me luck… these guys are really cool and I am totally blown away by their tech.   It would be a dream job.