Archive for April, 2011

XBMC + Windows + MySQL db backend


Have been planning for quite a while to change my xbmc-setup at home
to use a MySQL-database as backend for it’s library. This makes it so
that everything is in sync between several xbmc-instances you might
have at home, like which episodes you have watched and so on.

Easy as pie to setup (hint: add a section to advancedsettings.xml –
take a look at the wiki on

However, there is a bug that really messed it up for me:

Amazing that this has been there for over a year, and it’s still not
fixed… In short, the way xbmc saves the path in the database doesn’t
work when it contains backslashes like it would in Windows. So, if
you map your network folder with all media content as v: and have the
tv-show 24 in v:tv24 it would not work when this was saved to the
database. The trick is to not use v: but go directly to the
server-share through smb. This rules out using NFS, but oh well…

So in short: don’t use “normal” path’s in your sources in windows, use
smb://… instead. And everything will work 🙂

Wouldn’t it be nice if this was at least documented in the wiki? Or
maybe fix the bug? Took me quite a while of googling and debug-logging
and reinitializing databases and so on before I figured out what was
the problem…

HP “Support”?


I have tried to add my printer to the new fancy service Google Cloud
Print, which according to the website should support my printer
directly through HP ePrint. But, no go… Google only comes with an
error: “Could not get printer information from HP.”. A quick
google-search establishes that I’m not alone with this problem (and
yes, I have logged into the HP ePrint-center and check that the
security settings are set to allow Google Cloud Print)…

So, I decide to open a support-case to HP about it. But that seems

1) I try to chat with them, but I can’t because my printer is
impossible to find in the choose your product-thingy, and before you
choose what product you have, they won’t chat with you… So I guess
HP has just forgotten that they sold a B110a/B110/cn245b-printer

2) I try to email them. To be able to do that, you have to go through
a series of questions on the web, it would be too easy to just give
you their email-address… So I fill everything in, but still it
doesn’t like my product-number. It has been written exactly as the
printer itself writes it on the status-printout. Still, HP doesn’t
recognize this product-number (and why is the product-number not the
same as the model-number you avertise it as?).

You can however choose to continue anyway, so I do that. Then I have
to fill in the S/N, and tell them what the problem is. When I am
finished, it doesn’t want to submit, because it claims the S/N is
incorrect. Again, I double-check it against the printers own
status-printout, and it is written correctly. Then I open the webpage
for the printer, and copy/paste the S/N from there, still HP doesn’t
recognize the S/N, and I am not allowed to email them.

Wow, nice “support”… So instead of chatting with me or answering me
through email (or rather webform if it had worked), I will have to
call them in normal busineess-hours.

This is not good support, HP… I am not even sure I would call it support…

#hp #fail

Oracle’s incompetent patch-handling


My last post was about how Oracle decided to move smb.conf and the
private-dir for samba without moving the files for you, or even
informing you that this might be a good idea… Read more here:

Today we are patching all of our servers at work, and we came across
even more stupid stuff:

1) If you have ldap/client running and enabled, it is probably because
you are using it. But in one of the latest patches, Oracle decides
that disabling this service is probably a good thing. Even if you
check after patching, it is enabled, but after a reboot it is
magically disabled. This is extra fun if you login as a normal user
and use sudo to manage your servers… How can this pass QC?

2) If you have changed /usr/lib/sendmail to point to your own local
mailer, f.ex. your own compiled exim, this is also probably because
you want it like that. Often Oracle decides that it’s a good idea to
just change this back to point to sendmail. Which breaks your setup
spectacularly… Again, how can this pass QC?

3) In our setup /var/mail is a symlink to /export/mail which is a
gigantic zfs-disk from the SAN. In one of the latest patches, Oracle
decides that this symlink should just be removed. Not even replaced
with a normal folder or anything, just removed. Which breaks our
setup spectacularly… Again, how can this pass QC?

4) If you don’t use sendmail, but f.ex. exim instead like we do, you
have probably disabled the sendmail-services. In many patches, Oracle
thinks that it’s a very good idea to just enable these services for
you again. Don’t they think we know what we’re doing when we disable
them ourselves? Again, how can this pass QC?

I am so happy that we’re moving away from Oracle/Sun/Solaris, because
this is just getting worse and worse for each time we patch the

#oracle #fail

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