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.

Monday, 4 June 2018

Colour me untrusting

 ... but a leopard doesn't change its spots. My GitHub account - opened eight years ago and not used now deleted. should not be associated with me in any way shape or form from here on in.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Debian 8.10 and Debian 9.3 released - CDs and DVDs published

Done a tiny bit of testing for this: Sledge and RattusRattus and others have done far more.

Always makes me feel good: always makes me feel as if Debian is progressing - and I'm always amazed I can persuade my oldest 32 bit laptop to work :)

Sunday, 27 August 2017

BBQ Cambridge 2017 - post 5 - and a bit of a retrospective

Thanks to all the sponsors of this BBQ who have made this so awesome.

This is also post 100 in this blog - looking  back, 90 or so of the 100 have been from Cambridge which just goes to show how much of the world revolves around a radius of about five miles from here

Likewise, there are folk in the room whom I've known for 20 years even if I'm dreadful with remembering  stuff. There's also scope for remembering absent friends who have got us this far and are no longer with us, for whatever reason.

I've just handed over some CDs and DVDs which, if readable, have a collective memory back to Debian 0.93 in about 1994 - even if not readable, they're a document of how far we've come from boot floppies to VMs, Bu-Ray size images and architectures undreamt of all those years ago.

BBQ Cambridge 2017 - post 4

Room full of people with laptops and an amount of chatting going on. Annoyingly, I can't get the thing I want to work but there's a whole load of other folk deep into dealing with all sorts.

The garden is also full but I'm guessing everyone is under the gazebos - it's now hot and sunny, unusual for a British holiday weekend.

BBQ Cambridge 2017 - post 3

One set of gazebos put up: kilos of mushrooms eaten, bacon, mushrooms and all the trimmings barbequed and consumed by the hordes. Now laptops are sprouting in the garden under the gazebos as the temperature is soaring,

Some folk are quiet in the house under fans typing and cooling off.

Masses of washing up is being done - as ever, it's how many people you can fit into a kitchen.

Now it will all go quiet for a bit as everyone lets the breakfast go down :)

Superb hospitality - we're _SO_ lucky to have Steve and Jo do this so readily.

BBQ Cambridge 2017 - post 2

We were all up until about 0100 :) House full of folk talking about all sorts, a game of Mao. Garden full of people clustered round the barbeque or sitting chatting - I had a long chat about Debian, what it means and how it's often an easier world to deal with and move in than the world of work, office politics or whatever - being here is being at home.

Arguments in the kitchen over how far coffee "just happens" with the magic bean to cup machine, some folk are in the garden preparing for breakfast at noon.

I missed the significance of this week's  date - the 26th anniversary of Linus' original announcement of Linux in 1991 fell on Friday. Probably the first user of Linux who installed it from scratch was Lars Wirzenius - who was here yesterday.

Debian's 24th birthday  was just about ten days ago on 16th August, making it the second oldest distribution and I reckon I've been using it for twenty one of those years - I wouldn't change it for the world.