Today, I wanted to try out xchat for Windows. Since I tried to use it on a Linux box at university, I kind of like IRC chat. Especially when there are many people whom you can directly ask if you need information about technical stuff or events at university.

So usually, due to the people who encouraged to use IRC, I hang out in the #osuosl and #osu-lug channels on freenode.

Sometimes I also use Windows so I wanted to install the windows port of this beautiful piece of software on my laptop. However, I didn't manage to connect to the IRC network at first, xchat claiming something like

"Software caused connection abort".

After some research I found out that the McAfee ViruScan Enterprise I installed for virus protection (thanks to the campus-wide license free to us students) is blocking IRC traffic in its standard configuration. Nobody knows, why. (Okay I assume there are viruses spreading on the IRC network... blah blah...) Anyways, I finally found a site to give me a hint on the anti-virus monster sitting in my task bar.

So just in case you wonder, too, why your IRC client doesn't work - remember McAfee is in no way better than Norton Antivirus: It tries just as hard to make good software unusable on your machine. tzzz

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I don't tell you anything new if I mention that FAT32 sucks. In my experience, it is simply one of the weakest and slowest known filesystems you can use.

But, unlike NTFS or all of the possible Linux filesystems, it is supported widely on most of the current operating systems such as Windows, Linux or even Mac OS X.

For that reason, I used to have my external USB hard drive formatted with FAT32. I didn't really feel comfortable about having 80 Gigs as a FAT32 filesystem, but I wanted to access the drive on Linux and Windows equally so it seemed to be the only possibility.

Two days ago, the drive died. Windows said it was unformatted, Linux gave the (more useful) information, it had a specific error in the superblock information. Tests with both the harddrive and its USB enclosure led to the assumption that the hardware was still intact. However I could not repair the file system that used to be on there - let alone even accessing it at all.

So, eventually I had to re-format the drive and on a fellow student's advice (thanks, hughesw!!) I tried out to use the - fairly new - ext2 installable file system driver for Windows.

<!--more-->What should I say? I'm impressed. It works flawlessly like any other "native Windows" file system and it's at lease as fast or even faster than the FAT32 thing I used to have before!

Also, just in case the file system has problems again at some time, I can use a proper fsck on the file system and - obviously unlike FAT32 - I have the faint hope to retain my data at all!

That being said, the ext2 IFS driver for Windows still seems to be "a little beta" so I would not necessarily trust it for important data (especially when writing, as this can be the most complicated or even devastating process). However, we apparently shouldn't trust FAT32 at all, too ;) So this seems to be a great file system for USB drives that you want to use on different OSes.

Does anybody know if OS X is able to access ext2 file systems, by the way?

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Everyone (yup, everyone) upgrades his Ubuntu version from Hoary to Breezy these days.

Me too:

905 aktualisiert, 289 neu installiert, 40 zu entfernen und 0 nicht aktualisiert. Es müssen 738MB Archive geholt werden. Nach dem Auspacken werden 259MB Plattenplatz zusätzlich benutzt. Möchten Sie fortfahren [J/n]?

After the guys at the OSL successfully mirrored the new Ubuntu release yesterday (thanks!), I can update my box at a reasonable speed, at least.

Let's hope everything will still work, afterwards. (I already heard of some people having screwed their installation with this upgrade argh) - However, I'll let you know.

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The Open Source Lab at OSU now (proudly) hosts the kernel master server.

When I got a tour through the OSL facilities on friday, I had the opportunity to take a sneak peek at the world's most important server (okay I'm exagerating...). Actually it isn't too fancy to look at at all, no blinking lights, no LCD display (as most of the other servers have it), no, just a tiny black box mounted to its rack of choice.

However, if you want to see some photos of the "historic event", go ahead.

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... left until my departure to the U.S. hooray

By the way: I switched to Wordpress yesterday (it's easier to handle two blogs on the same software) and after some web research I found a really cool theme for it (do you like it?).

I also wrote some new software called phpMyiCal, a PHP script that allows you to store and share your iCal / Mozilla Calendar files online in a MySQL database (it's probably compatible with PHP iCalendar, also). I'll release its beta version for you to check it out, soon.

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