Sunday, 10 March 2019

Debian BSP Cambridge March 10th 2019 - post 2

Lots of very busy people chasing down bugs. A couple of folk have left. It's a good day and very productive: thanks to Steve an Jo, as ever, for food, coffee, coffee, beds and coffee.

Debian BSP Cambridge 10th March 2019

Folks are starting to turn up this morning. Kitchen full of people talking and cooking sausages and talking. A quiet room except for Pepper the dog chasing squeaky toys and people chasing into the kitchen for food. Folk are now gradually setting down to code and bug fix. All is good

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Debian BSP Cambridge March 9th 2019 - post 3

Pub meal with lots of people in a crowded pub and lots of chatting. Various folk have come back to Steve's to carry on to be met with a very, very bouncy friendly dog. And on we go :)

Debian BSP Cambridge March 9th 2019 - post 2

Large amounts of conversation: on chat and simultaneously in real life. eight people sat round a dining table. Two on a sofa, me on a chair. ThinkPad quotient has increased. Lots of bugs being closed: Buster steadily becoming less RC-buggy Coffee machine is getting a hammering and Debian is improving steadily. All is good.

Debian BSP Cambridge March 9th 2019 - post 1

At Steve's. Breakfast and coffee have happened. There's a table full of developers, release managers, cables snaking all over the floor and a coffee machine. This is heaven for Debian developers (probably powered by ThinkPads). On IRC on #debian-uk (as ever) and #debian-bugs Catch up with us there

Sunday, 17 February 2019

Debian 9.8 released : Desktop environments and power settings

Debian 9.8 - the latest update to Debian Stretch - was released yesterday. Updated installation media can be found at the Debian CD Netnstall page, for example, at As part of the testing, I was using a very old i686 laptop which powers down at random intervals because the battery is old. It tends to suspend almost immediately. I found that the power management settings for the Cinnamon desktop were hart to find: using a Mate disktop allowed me to find the appropriate settings in the Debian menu layout much more easily Kudos to Steve McIntyre and Andy Simpkins (amongst others) for such a good job producing and testing the Debian CDs

Monday, 3 September 2018

Blanking a USB stick boot sector

One of these small things that comes up occasionally and that you can never remember at the time but always have to reinvent or rediscover.

Occasionally, a USB stick will end up with an odd partition layout / an Apple media ID or something that means that the size isn't reported correctly or means that you can't use it.

Plug in the USB stick :

dmesg ;

the last line you see is the line showing the USB stick you've just plugged in - say /dev/sdb

From a command line as root:

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdb bs=512k count=4

Writes 2MB worth of zeroes to the front of the USB stick, overwriting entries already there.

After that, parted /dev/sdb should enable you to partition the USB stick or you can use dd to put a bootable .iso file on it.