The Dysmey Blog
The personal weblog of Andy West.
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01/06/09
New Workstation
Filed under: General, Work
Posted by: Andy @ 10:25 pm

A new server is ready for Cardinal Scholar, the university’s repository. I have been working out a way to build a new foundation, on which I can transfer the repository to the new server. I want the latest versions for Apache, Perl, and the connecting mod_perl module because they are more secure and more functional than the versions recommended on the EPrints/Win install page.

However, now that the installation disk is ready, I had to put it aside to prepare my own new workstation. We have been getting Dells for awhile until the University signed a deal with Lenovo. No: I do not do Lenovo. You do not know what might be lurking in the firmware. Thankfully I got one of the Dells that are going to staff workstations.

The mini-ITX form of computer motherboards has become widespread now. The Dell I got obviously has one such board to fit inside a case that is the size of a large textbook. I can put it on my desk, making room underneath for my feet for the first time in years. I had to clear off my desk of papers and disks, then bind the cables in black flexible tubing to keep them from entangling each other and everything else. It looks very neat and tidy at my desk.

With the Dell I have had to inherit Windows Vista, Microsoft’s dope-induced attempt at imitating Mac OS X. Kirk (my boss) has worked out the more obnoxious kinks out of the hard disk image used to load Vista on the Dell, so the security boxes come up only rarely. Only a minimum set of applications — enough to let the staff do their tasks — have been installed on the workstation, so I have had to install the stuff I need to work: TextPad (editor), WinZip (archiver), FileZilla (FTP client), Pidgin (chat client), and Spybot (anti-malware).

All in all, it was a fun day adapting my new workstation to my needs and transfering my stuff off the old workstation.

The ice is coming back to the roads, and I just barely made it back home with enough time to feed the child (and discover she has readopted her old habit of hurling) before walking to the library for the first Friends of the Library meeting of the year. It was a quiet meeting mostly devoted to the old building and how we could come up with the matching funds for a grant to renovate it.

After the meeting I had an amiable chat over the phone with the guy who managed the financial services arm of the Bank when I was working there. He resigned from the Bank three years after I was given the boot. Mostly he talked about how the current depression (it’s a little too severe to call it a recession, folks) and how it came about. I already knew about the slack regulation and human greed that brought this depression about. Anyway, it was nice to talk to him and to see that he is doing okay.

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