Yeah, wtf eh?

Yeah, server has been up and down throughout the weekend. Even some have noticed the outage ūüėȬ† anyway here is hoping it doesn’t lock up again now that I have removed a chatty drive. (unfortunately out of warranty 8 months ago…)

If all else fails I throw the Web server in a VM on my desktop PC.

Update: still fighting issues but am planning on a new install and rebuild from there. I’m really starting to wonder why I don’t move some of this to a micro instance on Amazon. Reserved pricing looks nice but would need to determine storage cost, etc…

R.I.P. Mr. John Bedard


It’s been a sad couple of days realizing one of my ultimate best friends has departed the earth entirely too early.

I worked with John at my first job out of college (mid 1998) for nearly four years. In the time between leaving Montana for Minnesota we have stayed in touch over various forms of social media and exchanged many of messages. John always put a smile on my face when I was feeling down through witty comments / postings. People that know him will agree he is a very unique guy in which frequented in many circles. As our friend Mike posted he was the glue to held all of us together. We’re so fortunate to have time to visit with John and other friends during our trip to Montana last Summer.

John, you will be missed immensely. I take pleasure in knowing you died doing what you enjoyed best rather that sitting in a cubical working for corporate America. Peace be with you until we meet again.

Bedard РFrom Mike Quinn

Family and friends of John. You are in our thoughts.

John’s Facebook page:¬†

Site Maintenance

Server rebuild/consolidation taking place¬†throughout¬†the summer. Sites such as and my wiki will be off line for a while. Hosted sites such as has been migrated to another VM and won’t be¬†affected. This site may be up and down a bit throughout the process.

So, now you know ūüôā


A bit more meh these days

April sure has been a different month that is for sure. I’m just past two weeks out from surgery and so far feels slightly better though still quite swollen so less able to fully bend which makes stairs a special thing. On the work front am finally getting caught up on tasks and yet feel there is so much more to do. It’s been over six months now in the transition from dev to dev sys support but yet dev keeps me overloaded making it difficult to focus on sysdba tasks. I’m guessing at some point I’ll have to decide whether or not to call it quits and look for other opportunities internally or *gasp* outside. I know there’s one open position on a performance team which looks interesting but some of the tool requirements I’m lacking in.

Another interesting thing I have observed lately is a rather small disgust with Android updates. I know I voiced this in the past but as I see smaller companies like Acer and Archos releasing 4.0 to there tabs I question Samsung overall plan, do they really expect people to buy the newer tablet which is essentially the same specs (plus sd storage which should have existed in the first place) just to get the ICS update? I think not so it may be time to move on. My other two phone devices are finally to gingerbread and that process was entirely too slow. I never expected the Captivate to get the update since it was released with eclair but the Infuse really should be in line for ICS yet it took until just a week ago to get it to gingerbread. Fortunatly the custom mod community exists and I do see it is possible to run ICS on the Captivate. Plus there seems to be progress recently with some early CM9 Infuse builds, just not something I’ll try since the Infuse is my daily driver.

Have I griped enough? Hardly but in all serious I’m just getting this out off my head rather than posting in other social media locations. It’s not like there are many reading this anyway ūüėČ


Nothing new here. Had knee surgery on Tuesday, still recoverying and approached 2 miles today. Meh, a bit sore. Going to try to work a bit tomorrow so we’ll see how that goes.

My mind is all over the place these days but as I watch Top Gear (UK) I feel as I have flashed back to the 70s. Hmm

See ya next month ;.)

Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (beta)

Installed, nothing really that much different so far, maybe Unity will be better behaved. All hardware works so far.

Time to break this box ŗ≤•_ŗ≤•

Silly things I decide to do…

I’m not sure what gets into my head at times but often I find something silly to work on to pass the time and this time around it was getting FreeBSD 9.0 installed running under Xen with full para-virtualization (PV). In the past (I think it was 8.0) I couldn’t even install FreeBSD as a HVM domU as there was some issue with the bootloader. I started seeing posts around the FreeBSD 8.2 release time frame with people getting FreeBSD running under a Linux Xen machine as domU both HVM and PV so I suppose this finally came up on my list of something to do? Anyway I sort of resolved this installation fix around FreeBSD 8.0 by creating a file based image on an existing FreeBSD system and compiling a FreeBSD XEN enabled kernel. Details for what I consider the old way can be found at the following location: HOWTO: Create a FreeBSD 8 i386 Xen PV domU

The new way I used today involves first installing FreeBSD as a HVM domU and transforming the domU from HVM to PV. The instructions were written for FreeBSD 8.2 and Xen 3.4 but I can confirm that they do work for FreeBSD 9.0 with a few small changes (mainly in block device name – it listed ad1s1a whereas I found I had to use ad1p2 as the main device) and using Xen 4.x. I’m going to read up on what’s new in 9.0 so perhaps devices are being renamed. The new instructions can be found at the following site: Xen FreeBSD 8.2 DomU (PV) — Step by Step Howto

Everything seems to be working and it’s nice to have something new to play around with, not sure how effective the installation will be as far as messing with ZFS goes. One thing I’m pretty sure I’ll run into issues with ZFS is the odd memory cap (850MB) the domU has. Last I heard things like dedup fail in low memory setups.

Until next time…

Glacier National Park Annual Pass for 2012

During our visit to Glacier National Park last summer we stopped by to look at the 1913 St. Mary Ranger Station. While there my wife and I were encouraged to make a few brush strokes to a mural the volunteer (Sheryl Mink ) was working on. Well, that mural is the photo used on the 2012 annual pass for Glacier National Park. Read more at:

Highly Productive Weekend – meh?

It’s the designated Quarterly¬†Maintenance¬†weekend for my day job though not all that much I had to assist with since I’m only 50% on the sysdba team. So since I was sticking around for the weekend and there really isn’t all that much to do otherwise while my wife worked I took the time to get Oracle RAC setup in my home server environment again. My previous install was blown away quite a while back to make room for other cool projects.

This time around the entire install was based upon the latest release ( of the Grid Infrastructure and Database. Also this time around I setup the Xen guests as paravirtualized (pv) rather than full (hvm) and used CentOS 5.7 rather than Oracle Enterprise Linux. I hadn’t had experience setting up OEL as a pv but last Fall found a slick way to install CentOS. I’ll miss out on things such as ACFS but I have no desire to use ASM as a LVM (probably since the shared disk I use for ASM is essentially LVs over iSCSI – you can only virtualize so much before it’s pointless -no?)

Overall the entire setup was quite easy. Using open-iSCSI on the guests was the only real thing different from my 11.1 RAC installs. It seems like each RAC install since 11.2 has really been improved and has become quite flawless. I have no real use case for RAC but at least I have a recent setup around again to play around with.

I also decided to attempt my first installation of Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c. I had one other database server with an adequate amount of memory to attempt the installation but so far it’s been slow going (stuck at 66% for quite some time). I’m sure my ‘ignoring’ the 3GB physical RAM requirement will cause an issue since WebLogic loves to crash on low-memory machines (java… meh) At least I tried and suppose I could always shutdown the two RAC nodes to reclaim 4GB of physical RAM to ensure a successful installation.

So, there you have it, my weekend in less than 500 words.

Note: Summary of installation steps to be provided on Samdog Consulting site in the near future.

Update: Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c install did actually die upon first attempt. Successfully installed after server was brought up with 5GB physical RAM. It’s a pig but to be expected I suppose...

One Year…

Today is offically my one year anniversary at my current employer. I suppose that is consindered somewhat of an accomplishment. Unfortunately nothing really significant happens here until year three so the likely chance of making it to year three could be interesting given my typical employment trend. We’ll see…