systemd / DBus debugging starter pack

Introduction Trying to solve a 90 second wait-on-some-start-job on each boot situation, I found that there’s little info on how to tackle a problem like this out there. Most web pages usually go “I did this, hurray it worked!”, but where do you start solving a problem like this if none of the do-this-do-that advice [...]

Solved: systemd boot waits 90 seconds on net-devices-eth0

Introduction After installing wireshark (and tons of packages it depends on) on a rather fresh and bare-boned Debian 8 (Jessie), I got the “A start job is running for sys-subsystem-net-devices-eth0.device” message for a minute and half on every boot. It was exceptionally difficult to find the reason, because so many packages were installed along with [...]

When mplayer plays a black window (or: Cinnamon leaking GPU memory)

The incident All of the sudden, playing videos with Mplayer opened a black window. Sometimes going fullscreen helped, sometimes it didn’t, sometimes with video playing but without OSD. ffplay worked, but somewhat limping. Setting: Linux Mint 19 on an x86_64, with a couple of fanless GeForce GT 1030 graphics cards and Cinnamon 3.8.9. Mplayer’s output [...]

Perl, DBI and MySQL wrongly reads zeros from database

TL;DR: SELECT queries in Perl for numerical columns suddenly turned to zeros after a software upgrade. This is a really peculiar problem I had after my web hosting provider upgraded some database related software on the server: Numbers that were read with SELECT queries from the database were suddenly all zeros. Spoiler: It’s about running [...]

Replacing ntpd with systemd-timesyncd (Mint 18.1)

Introduction It all began when I noted that my media center Linux machine (Linux Mint 18.1, Serena) finished a TV recording a bit earlier than expected. Logging in and typing “date” I was quite surprised to find out that the time was off by half a minute. The first question that comes to mind is [...]

Cinelerra 2019 notes

Cinelerra is alive and kicking. I’ve recently downloaded the “goodguy” revision of Cinelerra, Nov 29 2018 build (called “cin” for some reason), which is significantly smoother than the tool I’m used to. Notes: There are now two ways to set the effects’ attributes. With the good-old magnifying glass (“Controls”) in with the gear (“Presets”), which [...]

Solved: Missing ktorrent icon on Linux Mint / Cinnamon

Running ktorrent on Linux Mint 19 (Tara), the famous downwards-arrow icon was invisible on the system tray. Which made it appear like the program had quit when it was actually minimized. Clicking the empty box made ktorrent re-appear. Solution: Invoke the Qt5 configuration tool $ qt5ct and under the Appearance tab set “Style” to gtk2 [...]

Writing a panel applet for Cinnamon: The basics

Introduction What I wanted: A simple applet on Cinnamon, which allows me to turn a service on and off (hostapd, a Wifi hotspot). I first went for Argos catch-all extension, and learned that Cinnamon isn’t gnome-shell, and in particular that extensions for gnome-shell don’t (necessarily?) work with Cinnamon. Speaking of which, my system is Linux [...]

Failed: Install Argos Shell Extension on Cinnamon

You have been warned These are my pile of jots as I tried to install Argos “Gnome Shell Extension in seconds” on my Mint 19 Cinnamon machine. As the title implies, it didn’t work out, so I went for writing an applet from scratch, more or less. Not being strong on Gnome internals, I’m under [...]

Setting PS1 with color codes properly with gnome-terminal

There are plenty of web pages describing the different escape codes for changing color of an ANSI emulating terminal. This is in particular useful for giving the shell prompt different colors, to prevent confusion between different computers, for example. The trick is to set the PS1 bash variable. What is less told, is that \[ [...]