debian 9.5 in the wild and the broken virus scanner

UNCHECKED was the magic word that amavis (my blog) added to emails going through it after the upgrade.  Various suggested fixes to amavis in 50-user did nothing and so i delved into clamd the zoos scanner.

It could not share a socket in /var/run, adjusting that config file also did no good so after a afternoon of fun restarting things so i disabled the virus scanner in amavis which does not see a lot of action anyhow.

amavis[*]: (07127-01) (!)ClamAV-clamd av-scanner FAILED: run_av error: Too many retries to talk to /var/run/clamav/clamd.ctl (All attempts (1) failed connecting to /var/run/clamav/clamd.ctl) at (eval 98) line 613.\n

my groups already share clamd, and amavis as members for both so that was not the fault I even removed a yara (my blog) file that the 9.5 version that clamd did not like all of a sudden.

Carol Beer little britain says computer said no

It did work in its own user/group but not anymore since it is a low priority and bad files are banned by the mta as well from email (a duplication)  i bet nobody will notice it is gone until it gets fixed.  Not my issue it seems but some artefact of AllowSupplementaryGroups not perhaps getting reflected elsewhere.

My printer server config got wiped away (dbus/systemd shenanigans ?) but i managed to get a kind of print server working for monday and that is a tale for another day as hplip might need an upgrade via a compile and that seems to be not important software in the grand scheme of now.

Overall apart from the whole server room rebooting itself early in the morning debian 9.5 seems a bit problematical if you use it as a server rather than ‘basic’ workstation.

I would have installed it at some point anyhow and i would not rather want to have done this on a monday morning.

So not sure if this is something i can fix.  More fun that way.

the new hp printer one year on

Having been a year (my blog) or about that time i decided to run some tests on the printer and noticed a couple of things

  1. it can now do ipv6 [new was  ipv4 only]
  2. new firmware [see above]
  3. it records everything including scan use
  4. internal print status pages are not charged by instant ink (my blog)**

So it is a little creepy – it has been cheap to run if you keep an eye on it monthly and adjust the plan printer pages* also it has extended the toner life of an older printer.

If like the zoo you do not print 1000’s of pages on the printer then hp send new ink cartridges once a year, the large print cartridges have lasted 13 months that was with some photo printing.

Economics wise i based on a what if like comparison on bought cartridges with two criteria hp and oem ink once a year when the ink cartridges turned up.   Year 1 non hp ink is low as i found a cheap supplier –  would they have lasted as long as the instant ink is like comparing apples with oranges and buying hp cartridges too is also speculative, i am not buying three printers just to confirm that.

In year 2 (a projection) savings remain the same for ‘genuine’ ink and as the compatible price rose for some reason (exchange rates probably)  when i checked i still ‘saved’ money renting rather than buying ink.

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Overall: saving 34.10 34.52 68.62 hp ink
4.52 12.52 17.04 not hp ink

So it seems a good prospect for us.  Your mileage might vary.

I think i now have a way of getting a true page cost per cartridge from the status sheet since those figures are enabled.  More at another time when i replace cartridges for a per sheet cost and which can be comparable.

Overall the printer is liked within the zoo (does not screw up), does not jam although i did jam the printer once with very thin a4 paper.  The duplex is nice and reduces our paper usage even though one page printed on both sides is charged as two pages printed.

*pay more / pay less ** phew i dont print printer report sheets often and do not see a need to do it more than once  a year,

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.

hp ‘instant’ e-ink

Have you played the overpriced ink game?

Well it seemed a idea worth a test with the new printer (my blog) after all the low quantity hp inks will need replacing sooner rather than later and with heavy document printing in the month it was bought and with some months free its worth at least £26*.  Either way the zoo would have to had buy ink for a printer unless you colllect printers that cannot print..

The instant ink wording is not nice – go over and charges are soon incurred so it probably is not for heavy users (300 pages a month) not that i or the zoo care if the ink is genuine or not (my blog).  Lets face facts even you do not care about retail packaging – you just want ink not coloured cardboard packaging designed for a retailers point of sale displays .

The assumption here is that it theoretically brings down the cost of printing to what we would pay anyhow with non hp ink which is available for the printer.  Savings of 30% are reduced to 10% if you switch benchmarks and use the guide price of non hp ink which is what i did as i am just that sort of ape.    I wrote a spreadsheet so i have a fair idea – if i can ‘profit’ by comparing it to compatible ink then that seems a more reasonable comparison rather than just to hp ink

Duplex printing is accounted as two sheets, as to whether your printing is all colour, or mostly black and white is not a distinction made.  The control panel is not part of hplip the linux driver and separate so another printer is something i am going to keep working and will purchase ink for it outright opposed to ‘renting’ pages.

Do these cartridges last longer than the retail ones ? no idea so far but expect a six day post delay from hp when sending ink – as hp supplied the starter inks and it was government form printing month here in the zoo perhaps instant ink is not as instant. A first impression although ink levels appear ok after minimal printing after those large government documents.

It is nice to have a printer that prints rather than jams so that is another interesting issue as to how jammed pages are charged for.

The delivery of replacement inks is not particularly fast but they also supply recycling envelopes which shows that non genuine ink suppliers have taught hp a thing or too.

einkThe ink cartridges are longer than standard ones if standard one looks like a like van these look like an hgv however the basic hp supplied black ink crapped out at 89 pages, hp instant nk registers as that rather than hp ink  The ink sensor did not detect that there was no black ink left – thats one failing hp have still yet to get right.

I had to replace one starter ink with the hgv sized ‘instant’ ink  It appears that the mandatory test sheet for the scanner  to verify the ink cartridge is counted as a paid sheet even though you did not desire to print it however i recorded it as a charge and then a few days later the counter was less one page. Non printed output is still charged despite the printer not printing the output correctly – something to be careful off.

I have more questions than answers, i imagine that print head cleaning is a costly business with e-ink and not recommended. A long term factor that will prove bad on the economics of instant ink. So i will return to this topic and bore you further! What exciting stuff.

As mentioned I still use a non instant ink laser printer for black and white things where the zoo pays £12 a cartridge.  HP charges £ 60 for a 1500 page unit.  You may see why i still compare non hp ink with instant ink despite the unfairness of the bigger size which is like comparing apples with oranges.

Only a fool would use hp sticker prices and i do not like to be called one of those.

Since i took the screenshot – instant ink has had a website ‘redesign’ which sucks imho.

If you are still awake after reading all that well done your prize is a banana skin which you can collect from the zoo.

*more if you use hp sticker prices – a month is classed as 30 days it appears

 

 

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.

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

A funny story about timeless

timelessTimeless is a tv series where three people chase after one bad guy with all the answers but who cannot stop them, i could not be bothered to watch it on tv so i recorded it.

One evening i caught up, and had to pause it to fix a zoo pc (my blog) that had returned to 1980. Since timeless had adverts in i managed to see both timeless, fix a rubbish hp pc in the time allocated in the schedule.

Apparently that was not a paradox.

Timeless seems a fun exploration of history if perhaps a little too american orientated as the civil war there is not something that animates me with views and something perhaps worth a view even with a basic time machine although the persons knowledge of history seems frighteningly prescient.

I hope you got the humour.