plans for computers in the action room (very techincal)

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plans for computers in the action room (very techincal)

Postby James » Wed Nov 14, 2007 8:57 pm


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Postby James » Wed Nov 14, 2007 9:02 pm


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Postby chombee » Wed Nov 14, 2007 11:33 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby chombee » Wed Nov 14, 2007 11:40 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby chombee » Wed Nov 14, 2007 11:56 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby James » Thu Nov 15, 2007 12:07 am


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Postby swithun » Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:47 am

I like thin clients - I just chucked out some X terminals I didn't have a use for, though they might still be in the West Preston St internet cafe.

There is a trade-off. With desktop machines, you have lots of medium problems. With thin clients, you have some small problems and the odd big problem. But with backups, RAID and maybe a standby server, you can quickly recover from any disaster.

There is , which has a free Linux distro that gets transfered to a diskless client (min 64Mb RAM). Ubuntu + Gnome isn't the fastest combination. Arch Linux with a simpler window manager would be more responsive, though less familiar.

But I suppose we will want to have some full power desktop machines for video editing etc.. And unless we have lots of very crap boxes and not many good ones, we wouldn't get all the benefits of running thin clients.

I'm going to test some print quota software on my computers. And I'm afraid I won't be able to come on Saturday. I'll be in the countryside covered in mud.

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Postby Gandhi » Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:45 am

I concur with all these points as I understand every single thing that you are saying. :D
It's like God's vagina!

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Postby Martin » Thu Nov 15, 2007 12:20 pm

I'm not sure how thin we're talking here, but if you mean just running an X server on the client and all the apps on the server then we'd need a hell of a server, and gigabit ethernet everywhere. I don't see the point really. The machines we took upstairs are P4s, P3s, fine on their own. Do a standard install on them, treat them as wipeable, keep anything of value on the server where it will get backed up. Server can be in another room for security. Easy to chop and change machines, and we can do it all with current hardware.

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Postby ravanwin » Thu Nov 15, 2007 12:37 pm

all:

nice brain work on this. I don;t understand most of this but here are two things I wanna say.

Sorry about meeting at random times on a weekday. We decided it somehow but, obviously, that was stupid. I can;t remember how or why it was thought that weekdays were better. Action is for weekends. Meetings is for weekedays! Agreed?

Also: I love the idea of a server where people can store data. In theory, we could have more storage space and charge people a fee? Could this be a way for the room to pay for itself? Or could we sell pen drives / external hard drives if people are using the computers for a large ammount of work. As we are striving for a workshop space, it would be really good if we could offer storage. I do think that all computers, on reboot, should be wiped much like you would have at any university etc.

Also: please feel free to buy things within reason. (has anyone pm'd graeme?) If we need more network stuff / hard drives etc and want to make sure it all works --- just get it. The goal should be to have something that works without driving us all insane.

Only you all can stop The Forest from going computer free by 2009. If this fails, we return to analogue!

Seriously, awesome work on this thought process!
Ryan

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Postby chombee » Thu Nov 15, 2007 2:03 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby ravanwin » Thu Nov 15, 2007 2:59 pm


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Postby Jay (Infoseed) » Thu Nov 15, 2007 7:39 pm

Sounds like a plan! :)

Sorry for not being around much recently (tough few months) but I would be happy to help out... dropped in a couple of times over the last few days and will be around for a bit later tonight.

Have a few sources for more PC equipment if required - some of the pcs that have been salvaged from downstairs should be ok with a little testing/tweaking.

Still plenty of sorting out and clearing of the old infoseed junk to be done and reorganizing of the new meeting/workshop/action room. Seems there are a few people available on Saturday - please come and lend a hand if you can... :wink:
Knowledge is RESPONSIBILITY, not power...

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Postby chombee » Sun Nov 18, 2007 2:34 pm

So I showed up on Saturday but it seems no one else did? There wasn't much I could do on my own. The new printer arrives on Tuesday I think. We need to get a group of people, like 6-8 people, together at once for a day or half-day to get the action room work done. It isn't gonna happen any other way, or at least if we show up randomly in ones or twos it'll take months.

Shall we try next Saturday at 11? Meet in the cafe? Who can make it?

I had a look at what would need to be done:

* Electrics. Someone has already run power to the room from the hall. That'll do for now. In the long term we need to fix the electrics in the room somehow but lets not worry about it for now.

* Network. One of the first things we need to do is get Internet access to the room. As I understand it we need to run an ethernet cable from one of the routers above the coffee machine into the room. In the long run the server above the coffee machine needs to be moved, but lets worry about that later. I had a look with Graeme and the easiest thing seems to be to drill a hole through the window frame of the window nearest the kitchen. The cable can go out the window and up and then into the action room. There is tons of network cable in the room already, but most of it has no ends, so we need someone with a crimping tool and cable ends. This is a 2 or 3 person job.

* Clearing space. We need one wall cleared so we can put the two big desks against it and setup the computers. I think the wall opposite the windows looks best. Some filing cabinets need to be moved. Another 2 person job.

* Software setup. I've left 6 Ubuntu CDs in the room, so we can do all of the installs at the same time. Install Ubuntu, setup the rsync script to wipe the homedirs every login (same as gold room), install ssh, get the clients reading the folders on the server. We can worry about getting the rsync backup solution on the server working later.

* Server. Finding a secure place to put it.

* Printer. Get it working, get printer sharing working.

* New office. Move the two computers from the existing office, set them up as the client in the action room are setup with a connection to the server. Files already on these computers need to be backed up, moved to the server. The office should have its own little printer too.

* General tidiyng and cleaning of the room

Well, that'd be a pretty good start anyway. If we could get through the first 6 of these in a weekend it'd be pretty good. So as you can see, this is gonna require a day of action from about 6 or 8 of us. Who can come?
I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby martinmckenna » Sun Nov 18, 2007 2:58 pm

i can help out

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Postby ravanwin » Mon Nov 19, 2007 12:57 pm


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Postby beev » Mon Nov 19, 2007 2:26 pm


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Postby Shannon » Mon Nov 19, 2007 4:36 pm

Regarding the internet: I'm not sure if it's any help, but there is already a hole drilled in the corner of the kitchen ceiling closest to the router. Chris did it for his multi-floor dj set at the last Blender.

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Postby Martin » Mon Nov 19, 2007 8:12 pm

I have salvaged a bunch of good stuff out of what was getting thrown out of the infoseed rooms - we didn't have time to find it all at the dorkbot session.

There are two more 1.7GHz Pentium 4 machines with 20GB hard drives, an Athlon 800, Celeron 600, two P3 500s and the old Infoseed server, a dual P2. I also found a CD burner and some spare memory & network cards.

For now this is all in the new room which makes for quite a lot of machines, but I figure we may want up to about 4 working ones, plus a server, and it's going to take a while to cannibalise those out of everything we've got before we can decide which bits to throw out.

I don't know for sure if I can come on Saturday, hopefully though. Is anyone free on Thursday evening though? I would be up for making a start on sorting out the machines then.

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Postby chombee » Tue Nov 20, 2007 11:16 am

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby Martin » Tue Nov 20, 2007 11:41 am


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Postby chombee » Tue Nov 20, 2007 5:22 pm

Ok
I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby Martin » Thu Nov 22, 2007 5:11 pm


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Postby chombee » Thu Nov 22, 2007 5:34 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby ruairidh » Thu Nov 22, 2007 6:30 pm

Hello there!

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Postby Martin » Fri Nov 23, 2007 1:20 pm


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Postby chombee » Fri Nov 23, 2007 2:27 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby beev » Fri Nov 23, 2007 3:48 pm


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Postby chombee » Fri Nov 23, 2007 4:18 pm

I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby chombee » Sat Nov 24, 2007 5:08 pm

So lots of people helped today and we've gotten much done on the action room:

Thursday: Internet access to the room, a hub setup in the room, two desktop computers installed and the server. I think. The hub is one the floor right now but Graeme says he can fix it to the underside of the desk which sounds great.

Saturday: most of the junk in there has been cleared out and the rest stacked against the far wall. Generally much tidier. We've discovered a switchboard and other power and phone related stuff against the far wall. Also, there is power to the lights in the room, and to about half of the power sockets in the room. So it seems we no longer need to run power from the hall or fix the electrics. We didn't do anything, we just discovered this. Martin, you might want to take a look. Also I setup one more desktop computer and monitor, but I couldn't get any working CD image or a reliable Internet connection to download and burn one, so nothing's been installed on it yet. There didn't seem to be a fifth complete computer in the room, hopefully we can cobble together one from what is there, but maybe we don't need to cause I have a desktop PC at home that I've been meaning to bring in. I'm not sure how it compares in spec to what we have, but it's not bad and likely less broken. If people are willing to do the work, I think we should make as many complete and working (and installed) PCs as we can with the working kit we have, then any spares can be donated to people.

I think that's all that's been done. We've made a lot of progress on that room in two days, it's really great to see.

So still to do... get two more clients setup (we aim for four clients plus one server), get the server's big hard drive in, get the SSH thing between clients and server going and the various scripts we want ... what else? Move the two office computers to the new office and sort them out, connect them to the server. Sort out our Internet connection, see if we can make it any more reliable. Probably other stuff.

Next weekend?

Oh, and the printer. They will not give us the password, only an engineer can have the password. They're coming on Tuesday to setup an IP address for it for us. One of us should be there to see what they do and show them what the deal is with our equipment.
I've had it with you. If I had an image of a laser gun I would absolutely position it right here in my hand...
Ha! I have a real laser absolutely positioned in my hand!

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Postby Martin » Sat Nov 24, 2007 6:24 pm

<i>We've discovered a switchboard and other power and phone related stuff against the far wall. Also, there is power to the lights in the room, and to about half of the power sockets in the room. So it seems we no longer need to run power from the hall or fix the electrics. We didn't do anything, we just discovered this. Martin, you might want to take a look.</i>

Okay, I'll look as soon as I can. Sorry I couldn't make it today.

<i>Oh, and the printer. They will not give us the password, only an engineer can have the password. They're coming on Tuesday to setup an IP address for it for us. One of us should be there to see what they do and show them what the deal is with our equipment.</i>

This is bullshit. We bought this, right? We need the fucking password. I do not want to have to call these bastards out because we need to change settings.

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Postby Martin » Sat Nov 24, 2007 6:31 pm

Oh, and don't fix that hub to the desk - we don't need it, it's a noisy monster. Get a little one.

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Postby ravanwin » Sun Nov 25, 2007 7:58 am

re Password:

they say we only need the password in order to set up an ip adress and while, yes, it is our machine, i suppose as the people we are contracted into service with, they worry that access to the guts of the copier will mean that we might mess things up. like when you own your computer but your warrenty forbids you from opening it up and tinkering around. it seems fair to me and i think they will give the password if we are adament. maybe come and meet the engineer and talk to them. these are truly reasonable folk (at the moment - since we haven't paid them yet)

2pm. tuesday.

also, damp paper is slowing the copier down. need to bring paper up from the office and make it dryer.

r

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Postby Martin » Sun Nov 25, 2007 9:12 am

If it's just to set it up with an IP address, and we can do the rest of the admin stuff over the web interface on it, that's not so much of a problem.

I don't know if I can be there on Tuesday, so could someone pass the following on to them:

Ideally we would like the printer to get an IP address automatically using DHCP, which is already set up on our network and is and how all the computers get their addresses.

If the printer doesn't support DHCP then please assign it to 192.168.43.5 with network mask 255.255.255.0 and gateway/DNS 192.168.43.1.

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Postby Martin » Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:27 pm

Right, all the sockets are now working. There is a three-circuit fusebox in the room, two of the circuits (15A each) are for the sockets, one of them had a blown fuse so I replaced it with the fuse from the unused circuit.

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Postby Martin » Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:28 pm

Also the printer is up and running, and the machines in the room are set up to print to it.

I will post some more notes about it later on.

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Postby beev » Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:07 am

I've received the bill for the printer. Shall I pay it?

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Postby ravanwin » Wed Nov 28, 2007 12:55 pm

yes, please.

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Postby martinmckenna » Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:17 pm

there is info on the situation of the photocopier and the computers
here


sry if ive posted the info in the wrong forum


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