Fixing systemd postfix failures via cron

Being when i write this it is winter i decided to reboot the zoos server and put in standard* more for the cooling fans, having done that (free room heat) i restarted and forget to check if postfix had started (my blog) .

Eventually i hand type the postmulti (my blog) command and it works. As reboots are rare this is not an everyday occurrence i can excuse the behaviour after all systemd wont tell me why it fails since its perfect so i must be to blame for going outside of ‘default’ systemd configuration..

So i decide to create an onboot script with cron and the @reboot command and that now starts postfix for me and does something that systemd cannot do

I imagine the idiots who develop systemd are most upset with me and will development a cron replacement that disables that feature.  If they do then i think my migration to a bsd variant will be guaranteed.

If your software sucks like systemd does then best do not blame us ‘users’ for stuff that other things can do.

*opposed to hurricane/typhoon speed which is good summer setting

upgrading to gigabyte ethernet switches

example

The zoo nas installed gigabit switches ! after many years of being ‘capped’ to 100 mb on our internal network and perfectly fine since nobody has ever complained about it for stuff but as our existing switches are probably not energy efficient. these new ones I can power them with usb as well.

A fair bit of the zoo’s stuff could do gigabyte already and i cannot remember how old the existing switch equipment is.but it still looks new despite being ancient in it history.

So its probably time to change things.

The switch is smaller than our 100mb existing unit and the ethernet cables all plug in consequentially opposed to 1-x-1 spacing which i had to do with the other and plug in from the back which is nicer imho.

It consumes a third less power than the old switch unit, i could not power by usb as no spare usb slots where nearby and all being used.

It works and seems faster so appears to be a good idea.   I have labelled it with the year on it so whenever next i cannot remember when i bought it i know.

The old units looks as it did when it was new it seems a shame to think of it as junk.

The branded pci slot problem

Bananas is not beyond installing things into computers when required but thinks the world of pci slots and things to the right look idiotic. Probably unserviceable too since you probably do more damage removing the case on the card (not the pc).

nvida driver software sucks too in fact the zoo never buys that crap with limits on functions and shit linux support means it is best avoided..

your average inter processor dreams of being

Crap software and marketing people should be shot for what they have done to the pci and its variant slot spec the ones with the flashing lights apparently need software just to flash and quite why your pc looks like a discotheque inside is something of which i never got perhaps your average intel processor secretly loves it? and is a party animal

I get the point of water cooling but pci has a reputation problem in my humble opinion.

But what do i know.

returning back to instant ink at six months

Which i started here (my blog) so some bonus thoughts

The first month was a heavy print month selling assets and needing copies of documents, along with tax return so the quota was well used and as no roll over pages had accumulated would have been chargeable but where not as to being on the trail

Month 2 left some pages that rolled over and as did the third month.

I decided to use all the monthly quota which reflected the status as it used the roll over pages rather than charging us for the extra copies and so have not yet got to a point when roll-over pages expire as there is a limit to them carried over to next month in quantity

In six months i recovered two months quota to be carried over so provided you use some most months and have light and heavy months it kind of works out well

It is spreadsheet-able.- boolean (plan change) and fairly complex if statements (loss of pages over max) are needed

=x+G9-H9 /new month quota + rollover - lost
=IF(C10>F10,SUM(C10-F10,0)) /rollover pages to next month
=IF(C10>100,C10-100,0) /lost pages
=IF(F10-C10<1,0,F10-C10) /over quota pages
=IF(I10/15<=1,SUM(I10/15),SUM(I10/15)) /charge over quota pages

=IF(F10>=C10,1,0) /returns boolean value if you need to upgrade or downgrade printer quota based on over quota. Cumulative lost pages month on month indicate downgrade or justified reason to buy ink cartridges outright.

It works quite well for us although i still have no comparison with non hp ink.  Six months in i have yet to go over quota although this new printer is getting more of use* than our non instant hp ink printers so we can avoid over quota page costs .

Provided we dont go mad excess printing – savings on buying ink in the first year still appear plausible even with  non genuine hp ink.  The elephant in the room is still how much bigger the instant ink cartridges as a comparison which you should be able to see in the image above.  Does that mean larger means more savings on standard size ink quantities – is a value question i cannot answer.

As the printer is still new it is not incurring problems so when those begin i am not sure the printer will be desired as a asset after all being charged per sheet means once errors start it means we are paying hp to not print incomplete images an undesirable outcome..

The privacy issue with instant ink still concerns me but apart from a mysterious 69666 error when the printers software crashed its been a pain free experience.so far..  Should the price go up or the terms get worse then i could see the use of non hp ink in this printer

*duplex printing is easier and it is faster.

How much! and adverts too

also in beige

The zoo needed pc’s as some of them are well over ten years old and showing signs of hardware issues like forgetting the time** and being a bit slow with other regular seek human movements that persuaded the zoo to flash some cash on stuff..

Naturally i go to a site that i can buy to order rather than buy hp (my blog) or another brand get what we need without the crap copy of windows which is a lot cheaper than in stock and off the shelf from online retailers.

Crook

Deselecting windows 10 (my blog) resulted in the zoo shaving £100 off the bill (converted tp usd 130.00 at time i wrote this. So next time you wonder what you could do with an spare $130 makes using open source software a lot of sense.

mafia run microsoft

Apparently I also read that Microsoft are putting adverts everywhere in windows 10 so in addition to buying mafia insurance* from microsoft they also plaster adverts over it.

I am fascinated that people pay microsoft for this software via hardware vendors who i assume do it for laziness and some very shady microsoft sales staff.

Sure we have to install something on the hardware, but even windows needs setting up.

*nice shop window there, we will use it to sell your competitors products and spy on you. ** can break ssl.as websites will refuse to load if your bios believes its 1/1/1980

strange tales of hewlett packard printers

I and the zoo have a love/hate relationship with older hp printers with non oem ink, we love the ink.  Printer – meh although the printer in question recently kicked the bucket (my blog)  and was replaced.

One day some time ago i was reading slashdot when i noticed that what i write (my blog) was being said by many.   Recently one cartridge was ‘REALLY EMPTY’ and after intervening with a button press since we ignore the hp sensor

This even pissed off the zoo staff  who started printing to a different laser printer which means to hp that the other printers ink wont be touched and so not replaced until its not printing in a missing colour deemed required.

Meg Whitman is ok, what about ebay ?

Meg Whitman is ok, what about ebay ?

Two weeks go by and i check out the printer settings on the server to find it to have defaulted to american letter size paper. rather a4 and when i turn it on its ink level is fine and it does not shutdown on start up, or need a ok pressed.

I of course expect such foul play from Meg and Cary (my blog) as shit ex bosses of HP.

The result for hp is that no ink genuine or otherwise was bought by the zoo.

What really confuses me is that i dont remember downloading a new version of hplip, or changing printer settings on the Linux server to letter size which no sane person directly uses but sends jobs to it.

Its not my reputation HP its yours.

avoid innostore usb drives

About a year ago i purchased a 16gb innostore usb flash drive.  It crapped out on me once again (my blog) and the best format was only ten megabytes and that was with a clearing of the partition table.

I recommend that if you are looking for an usb flash drive steer clear of innostore brand.  The device is awaiting a journey to a ewaste disposal plant.

I had recorded A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night a film which had five minutes of logos and titles before the thing died and then accessed the next item.

If you value data avoid innostore.

upsetting hplip when reinstalling a printer queue

One of the zoos printers was not working via hplip after i compiled it so i deleted it and set it up again for the new printer (my blog). One has real ink and the other has non hp toner (my blog) in it – hplip the linux driver for printing then refused to tell me any other ink levels -genuine or not regardless of the sorry state of guessing ink quantity by this hp software which is best ignored imho.

I feel so chastised*. – still see no purpose in buying hp ‘genuine’ ink after all .

*when the ink does not print it probably means it needs toner.

‘genuine’ toner

An older printer here in the zoo needed toner so i obtained one for it at a very reasonable price. It works and a couple of days later i decided to look up what ‘genuine’ toner costs.

I nearly fell out of the tree when i discovered a 545% difference in price for 1500 pages. That would have been expensive per page.  The non genuine one i bought is apparently rated for 2000* pages – honestly speaking as long as it lasts about the same time as usual i think that genuine toner has lost the argument.

Perhaps ‘posh’ ink should have it written on every document to impress people – a somewhat incorrect footer might say we paid 500% more to print this page.

Nice to know. *extra toner in the container

Newer hp officejet printers weird setup on Linux

a printer image

The zoo’s hp officejet printer dating from 2007 died when it decided not to print 75% of the things it was asked to do of recent it made some cool grinding sounds indicating something or other. Unwillingly i opted for a newer model (under a hundred in incremental model versiion number) as a quick replacement of which several hours later i am still setting up.

Oddly though the setup was geared up for windows and mac users – no 123.hp.com dont work, us linux folk had to use cups to setup basic printing. The printer does not come with a brick to power it just a cable from a plug which from a firm that love there power bricks is different hp power bricks can be a horrible quality.

When the printer is off it is ‘sealed’ inside whether that preserves the ink is a interesting question and an interesting view of a possible design defect solution from hp

The rest of the features like instant ink connecting to its wifi and andriod i gave up on as not important to start with after all printing from our linux pc’s is more important than that.I will come back to that

Hplip (the official linux driver from hp) does not support the printer (and does not show) despite cups getting the printer to do stuff. – is hplip err legacy ? no so i had to compile a newer version from source, ignore qt4 or it will never compile. Then hplip shows the printer that cups can see and scan things.

Perhaps as linux users hp.com do not want any more money from us special types ? and I have no idea how you change its default wifi password or join it to our wifi network until i figured out the touch screen with abc as one key and you have to touch the key twice to get a b – not explained in the paper manual but something i eventually figured out wth guessing.

The printer prints in duplex and adds yet another unopened rj11 cable to the zoo’s collection of unused rj11 cables and adaptors for the phone socket since nobody faxes any more.

The paper documentation is thoroughly shit but as long it lasts a long time i guess the zoo will remain happy.

Android printing does work although the eprint app seems very ‘cloudy’* and desiring of optional things not essential if in local range.

Instant ink is another guessing game from hp for us linux folk to figure out and a google link to another link told me that hplip has sod all to do instant ink and is handled by a website that hp.com never decide to mention  (i would love to be a mind reader) however within thirty minutes provided you cloud enabled your printer beforehand i had ink setup.  See how that goes in a future post.

hp printer with shit tls

The ink is not as exotic this time and easier to buy outright too.

I suppose i need to find a real manual.  Ho hum it is not to be found on the cdrom disk for macs and windows users.  Sigh. What are hp thinking ?

Despite not being on the disk it is a pdf very much for windows and mac users.  If your me then most of it is useless.

Something also to guess is setting a password for the printers ip address done via a browser with the user name ‘admin’ this feels ripe for shodan.io to scan and abuse as is there way.

The tls needs an browser exception or no password set.

Five hours later and i think its setup, but not for google print cloud. Oh well.

*not in the sky but internet clouds