Wednesday 10 December 2014

Getting the Dell Laser printer C1760nw working on 64 bit Debian

I've just taken delivery of a Dell C1760nw from Amazon for just over £100 to replace the knackered inkjet which went before it.  As expected, getting the drivers working wasn't plain sailing, so for everyone else's benefit, here's what worked for me:

1) Download the 32 bit deb from here:
2) Open a terminal as root
3) dpkg --add-architecture i386
4) apt-get update
5) apt-get install libcupsimage2:i386
6) dpkg -i xerox-phaser-6000-6010_1.0-1_i386.deb
7) /etc/init.d/cups restart
8) Navigate to http://localhost:631
9) Add a printer (Xerox Phaser 6000B v1.0)
10) Print test page
11) Celebrate.

Thursday 30 October 2014

My Z wave and Openhab configuration

Over the last few weeks I've dived into Z Wave home automation with both feet, and now have several things working well (after much fiddling).  For those of you thinking of doing the same, or having issues with anything, you might want to look over my github repository which contains my openhab configuration files.

I'm using OpenHAB and I've been nothing but impressed with it, fully open source, and the google group is insanely helpful (Thanks Chris!)

I'm currently using:
An ASUS eeePC 901 running Debian Jessie
An Aeon Labs Z-Stick S2 USB Zwave stick
2 x Aeon Labs 4 in 1 multisensors
2 x Vision Security door/window sensors
3 x TKB Home wall plugs
1 x Horstmann ASR-ZW + HRT4-ZW boiler control / thermostat combo

I'm currently implementing the "wasp in a box" presence detection to control heating temperatures to attempt to save money, and busy thinking of more use cases for it.

I'll commit to the repo whenever anything changes, and hopefully keep you updated here if I remember.

Friday 27 June 2014

First Adventure with Z-Wave Home Automation

As we're (hoping to) soon be moving house, I wanted to look into home automation, starting with a set of Philips Hue lightbulbs on my wishlist, but reading led to yet more reading and I've ended up with the beginnings of a Z-Wave network.

I've purchased an Aeon Labs USB stick to stick in the side of my old unused netbook, and am dabbling with python-openzwave.  My first task was just to get the sensors (Aeon labs MultiSensor) recognised, and then start building some logic to monitor the temperature and turn on a fan if it rises above a threshold.
I've put some code up on github called flask-openzwave which I hope to grow as I learn more about Open ZWave.

Maybe foolishly, I decided this would be more fun than just buying a box (essentially another linux computer) pre-build with pre-made software.  The only thing I'll miss is a nice Android app, but this can be mitigated by some keyfobs and a REST-like web interface.  My wife will love it (maybe)...

Tuesday 29 April 2014

Your machine slowly runs out of disk space after using Assembly Binding Log Viewer

I came into the office this morning to find my laptop complaining that disk space on drive C: was critically low - which was odd as my 240GB SSD should be less than half full.

After running SpaceSniffer it was taking ages in C:\Windows\system32, further digging through the graph pointed me to C:\windows\system32\config\systemprofile\appdata\local\content.ie5 which had around 300,000 files in it.  All of them were .htm files, so I (tentatively) opened a file up in Vim (so it wouldn't run any scripts, etc).  It was then I realised what they were - all of them - were "Assembly Binder Log Entry" files.

I then remembered several weeks ago trying to debug a .NET assembly binding issue, and I'd turned on "Log all binds to disk" in Fuslogvw.exe, fixed my problem but didn't really "click" that it needed turning off afterwards.  I naively assumed it would only be logging for the duration I had fuslogvw open.  Wrong!

Clearing out the Temp htm files from the above location (by running explorer.exe as an administrator and granting myself permissions) only freed up around 500MB however, I was still missing around 100GB(!).  

Running spacesniffer again gave me a new location to investigate: C:\windows\syswow64\config\systemprofile\appdata\local\content.ie5 - which makes sense as it's a 64 bit machine running mainly 32 bit binaries.  However, no matter how many times I tried, I couldn't grant myself access, there were simply too many files and it kept timing out.

In the end I followed the process listed here to use psexec to open a command prompt as the relevant user, and set off a del *.htm command which took a good 6 hours to complete, but at least I've got my disk space back, and I won't be making that mistake again in a hurry.