Work Journal For Week of January 17, 2000

Last Update: Sunday, January 23, 2000 02:42 PM


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I had the chance to view my web site on a 20" monitor the other day and it gets hard to read when it is spread over the width of such a large monitor. This has lead me to play with limiting the width of the page but so far am not satisfied with the results. 

I did a little more experimenting and I think the way the page size is set on this page works. If anyone has trouble let me know. I think only those who run a resolution lower that 800 X 600 may have minor trouble.

I have periodically had trouble getting FrontPage to post some page updates. I have found that if I do a "save as", and "save as" the page with it's current file name that FrontPage will then post it the next time I publish to the web server.

I had my lunch with the agency people today and it was mostly a social event. I had decided on the weekend to keep my mouth shut and not comment on what I really think of my current job. I was a nice lunch of Chinese food, and the agency picked up the bill, which was nice. I also made sure to question what they are seeing in the IT job market at the moment. They say that things are picking up a bit but don't expect things to really get going till March. If this prediction is close to what happens, this could be good for me, as March is the last month of my contract.

If you are upgrading to Windows 2000, as you may already know it is recommended that you upgrade your BIOS. You should also check if there are other upgrades you can or should do, for example some IBM PCs have a flash upgrade for the firmware on CD-ROM drives.



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Tim O'Reilly presents some good answers to questions on how ebooks fit into the real world of publishing here. It is interesting to have someone in the publishing industry providing information and opinions on this subject. Much of the information I have seen prior to now has been way off base. While your there click on the "Back to the Articles Index" link to find other good articles such as What's Book Writing Like?.

I took things into my own hands at work today and started upgrading my PC to Windows 2000. It makes no sense to me to have to use Windows NT on my PC when the entire company is going to Windows 2000. I didn't get a chance to finish the job today, but all that remains is to add the PC to the domain.



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My co-worker broke his wrist on the weekend and he is having to adapt to doing things with only one hand. This means I have to help him do many things, such as carry computers etc. It also means that he is passing some of his work on to me, which is OK with me. Today was the first day in two and one half months that I have had a full day at my main office. Ghosting PCs is not terribly interesting work but it helps to pass the day.

I have a theory about winter and driving. As soon as the temperature goes below freezing, peoples brains freeze and they get even dumber behind the wheel than they already were. I drove to work today so I could go pick up some parcels after work. I am now glad that I have been normally taking the bus, as it helps me avoid the stupidly of winter drivers. One car this morning was going well below the speed limit, then as traffic caught up to it the driver slowed down even more, showing his/her lack of confidence driving in winter conditions. This person should be taking the bus and thus making the roads safer for the rest of us. I feel strongly that it is not speeders who are dangerous, if you want to drive fast you have your wits about you, but these people who drive way too slow cause problems as other drivers have to go around them.

My secondary ISP, has been giving me trouble. I have had difficulty getting authenticated so that I can receive my mail. Well it turns out the some not so nice people have been putting on a "denial of service" attack on Cadvision. It would seem that the DOS attack has been quite successful, and is prompting Cadvision to implement measures to reduce the effects of future DOS attacks.



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I missed the lunar eclipse as clouds rolled in just prior to 7 pm MST. I checked a few times through the evening but the clouds never went away. 

The Windows 2000 rollout at work is moving along nicely. The lab up in Edmonton has made disk images for most of the PC models we use, and a few special images for specific departments. Each night a senior support analysts sets up a Ghost multicast server. When all the PC that require disk images are ready and the Ghost server can see the PCs, the multicast is started and the image is send to all the PCs at once. This works very well and is not bandwidth intensive. They encountered a problem last night where one image they used had a computer name buried in it's registry which sysprep did not change. This caused lots of broadcast traffic on the network, and slowed the work down considerably. This morning someone put together a registry hack to fix the problem.



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I have been making slow but steady progress through the important sections of a Netware 5 book this week. With any luck this weekend I will clear a spot on the work table, start making some notes and get back to doing some hands on work with Netware 5. Some of you may wonder why I even bother playing with NetWare ( I at times question myself on this ), well I have a considerable time and financial investment in my Novell certification which will pay for itself someday, and if I don't keep my certification current, it will never be of any benefit to me. Novell still has a large install base, and they need techies to support those installations, and I might as well be one of them. 



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I don't know what the weather is like in the rest of the country right now but here in Calgary it is one of those winter days on which I wish I was on the slopes skiing instead of in my basement working on a server. 

As I worked my way through the process of making study notes for Netware 5, I realized that I needed to go through he setup of DNS and DHCP services again from scratch. I decided to do this from a clean server install, so I downed the server process on the server which brought me to a DOS prompt. From the root of C: I did a deltree of the nwserver directory to get rid of all the NetWare files on the boot partition. I then had to resurrect the autoexec.bat and config.sys files which provide me with CD-Rom support in DOS. To do this all I had to do was rename autoexec.000 and config.000 to autoexec.bat and config.sys and reboot the computer. 

While waiting for the server install, I took a look at one of my new Netgear NICs and found drivers for Netware 5 on the driver disk. I wish I had done this before I started the install as I would have put one of the Netgear NICs in the server. 

I misplaced my license diskette for Netware 5 so I did the install without it which means that the server will only allow 2 connections without a license. At this point this is not a big deal as I only have one PC connected to it via a crossover cable. But just for practice I dug out my license creation CD, a blank floppy and created a 5 user license floppy for the server. I popped the license floppy disk into the server, load Nwconfig, select License Options, enter the administrator ID and password and the license is updated to the server plus 5 users.

When I went to install DNS/DHCP on the server I wanted to install the NDS schema extensions for DNS and DHCP into and Organizational Unit of there own. So under the Organization tuscany I created an Organizational Unit dns/dhcp which the install did not recognize as an Organizational Unit. I then deleted dns/dhcp and created an new Organizational Unit dns-dhcp and the install had no problems. I have not recollection of there being problem with using a / in an organizational unit name, but obviously the DNS/DHCP install program has a problem with it.


Q. Can I connect two computers together without using a hub?

A. If you only have two systems that you want to get them connected together to do some file and printer sharing, you can save the cost of buying a hub by connecting the adaptor cards using a crossover cable. Crossover cables, which are different from the normal UTP cables in their pin configuration, are available in most computer shops. If you want to make one yourself, the cable is wired as below.

 1 <-> 3

 2 <-> 6

 3 <-> 1

 4 <-> 4

 5 <-> 5

 6 <-> 2

 7 <-> 7

 8 <-> 8


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I wanted to test if the problem I had yesterday with using the / character in an Organizational Unit name while setting up the schema for DNS/DHCP services was with the install program, NetWare or some other influence. So I removed the DNS/DHCP schema with the dnipinst -r command. Then I created an Organizational Unit called dns/dhcp and then ran dnipinst, which is a command line utility verse the Java utility I used yesterday. I ran into the same problem, which in this case, dnipinst would not let me type the / character when typing the context in the NDS Query form.

I created a user account under DNS/DHCP and was able to login using the context test.dns/dhcp so the / character is usable in some cases. In NWAdmin I looked up Organizational Unit in help, and under naming conventions it stated that special characters are allowed. So go figure!

I fired up the DNS/DHCP management Console, and created a Subnet, Subnet Pool and IP Address Range. Then at the server console I type load dhcpsrvr and DHCP is now ready to lease IP addresses. The final step is to add the line "load dhcpsrvr" to the autoexec.ncf so that if the server ever has to be shut down, when it is started again the DHCP service will be started.


Copyright 1999, 2000 John Doucette. All Rights Reserved


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