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mikerochford.com Being technical


Installing VMWare tools for Debian or Ubuntu

Packages that are required to install VMWare Tools in debian or ubuntu

apt-get install make gcc linux-headers-$(uname -r)

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Verifying your Linux Distro is 64bit.

I ran into a situation that I had to verify that I was running a 64bit os. Below is a quick command line check. It checks based on the current kernel loaded.

mrochford@host1:~$ fgrep CONFIG_64BIT /boot/config-`uname -r`


Run a command randomly

I wanted to run a command randomly everyday. Here is a one liner cron that I created.

echo "" | at now + `awk -vu=30 'BEGIN { srand(); printf( "%0.0f\n", rand() * u ); }'` minutes


Naigos Plugin: Check for packages to update in Debian/Ubuntu

Over the years I have manages a lot of systems, mostly debian based. The thing I really hate about having a lot of standalone systems is updating software. I am really bad at keeping track of new updates and I really dont want to have a cron script running to send me a email every day. Below is a script I used as a plugin for nagios.

The Script: check_for_updates.pl


Changing the I/O timeout on your SCSI disk

Changing your I/O timeout for your SCSI disks are rare. When you are running VMWare that houses the guest OS on a NFS/SAN mount you need to change the timeout. If you dont you will run into a mess with your guest OS. You will try running a snapshot and browsing your file system and bam its locks up. Below is what you need to change in your udev rules to change it.

Location: /etc/udev/rules.d/50-udev-default.rules

SUBSYSTEM=="scsi" , SYSFS{type}=="0|7|14", RUN+="/bin/sh -c 'echo 60 > /sys/block/sda/device/timeout'"
SUBSYSTEM=="scsi" , SYSFS{type}=="0|7|14", RUN+="/bin/sh -c 'echo 190 > /sys/block/sda/device/timeout'"
SUBSYSTEM=="scsi" , SYSFS{type}=="1", RUN+="/bin/sh -c 'echo 900 > /sys/block/sda/device/timeout'"

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Making your own ringtones for your Iphone (mp3 to m4r)

I have done much searching on the internet on how to convert mp3 files to Itunes m4r files. I really dont like using Itunes if I dont have to so I thought I would write something that will use my unix box.

This perl script will convert most mp3s to m4r.

I used 4 applications that can be installed on any GNU based system.

  • mp3info - An MP3 technical info viewer and ID3 1.x tag editor
  • mp3splt - Mp3Splt-project is a utility to split mp3 and ogg files selecting a begin and an end time position, without decoding.
  • Mplayer
  • Faac - FAAC is an open source MPEG-4 and MPEG-2 AAC encoder, it is licensed under the LGPL license.

or if you are running debian/ubuntu:

apt-get install mp3info mp3splt mplayer faac