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Help Wanted -- Article Ideas

Answers to these questions should be sent directly to the e-mail address of the inquirer with or without a copy to gazette@linuxgazette.net. Answers that are copied to LG will be printed in the next issue -- in the Tips column if simple, The Answer Gang if more complex and detailed.

This section was edited by Heather Stern <star@tuxtops.com> aka. "Starshine".

Before asking a question, please check the Linux Gazette FAQ to see if it has been answered there. The AnswerGuy "past answers index" may also be helpful (if a bit dusty).

Rock Linux

Thu, 20 Jul 2000 12:19:04 -0700
From: Mike Orr, Linux Gazette Editor (gazette@linuxgazette.net)


I've been reading a bit about this Rock Linux distro. Has anybody used it? It's worth some coverage in LG just because it's so different.

Free Linux ISPs Revisited

22 Jul 2000 18:26:28 -0700
From: J. Coleman (jecoleman@netnoir.net)

Some time ago I posted a question asking about free Linux ISPs. Lots and lots of folks were kind enough to write back telling me about FreeWWWeb, a free OS-independent ISP here in the continental USA (THANKS!).

Well, FreeWWWeb just went belly up and is trying to transition its customers to Juno.

That leaves Linux users up a creek since Juno (like all other free ISP software that I'm aware of) is Windows only.

So, once again I ask the question:

"Anyone know of any free LINUX-FRIENDLY ISP's in the continental USA?" A wide variety of access numbers would be ideal since I do travel with my Linux laptop but beggers can't be choosers, as they say. Thanks, all.

can't connect to ISP

Tue, 30 Jun 2099 11:55:36 -0700
From: "a" (softguy@citiz.net)

i have Debian 2.0 and can't connect to ISP though i can connect in Win95. Below is output of plog:

Jun 30 11:47:50 debian pppd[223]: Serial connection established.
Jun 30 11:47:51 debian pppd[223]: Using interface ppp0
Jun 30 11:47:51 debian pppd[223]: Connect: ppp0 <--> /dev/ttyS2
Jun 30 11:47:51 debian pppd[223]: sent [LCP ConfReq id=0x1 <asyncmap 0x0>
<magic 0x7bc2> <pcomp> <accomp>]
Jun 30 11:48:18 debian last message repeated 9 times
Jun 30 11:48:21 debian pppd[223]: LCP: timeout sending Config-Requests
Jun 30 11:48:21 debian pppd[223]: Connection terminated.
Jun 30 11:48:21 debian pppd[223]: Receive serial link is not 8-bit clean:
Jun 30 11:48:21 debian pppd[223]: Problem: all had bit 7 set to 0
Jun 30 11:48:30 debian pppd[223]: Terminating on signal 15.

[ This would make a great article. There are a fair handful of ppp-connection apps like wvdial and kppp, but no clear documentation or wizard in the form of "The windows user would do ... need to ask ISP 'blah blah blah' ... fill them into <whatever files or dialogs>". Most especially one that would have the user able to successfully beat the "you're using linux? we can't help you then" gantlet at their ISP. (My advice for those: vote with your wallet.) Probably the tech support of every major distro gets asked this sort of thing a dozen or more times a day.

It appears that the ISP-Hookup-HOWTO hasn't been updated since early 1998. The Linux world has changed a lot in the last two years; perhaps someone should become its new maintainer. -- Ed.]

TV-out Support

Sat, 15 Jul 2000 18:14:40 -0000
From: "S. K. Pasi" (santoshpasi@hotmail.com)

Dear Sir,

I have Asus AGP TNT34000 display card with TV out/in support. It works absolutely fine in Win9x. It also works fine in X-windows. But I am unable to get TV-out support in Linux.

Finally I have change the display card to SiS 6326 (with has direct output feature to tv). I am able to get the command line output to TV. But when I try to run X-Windows, I am unable to see any thing. There can be some errors in XF86Config file regarding PAL/NTSC resolution and frequency settings. Can anyone point me to some web-sites (or documentations) for TV-out support or software.

Can you suggest some other cards, which can give tv-out support. I am using 21" Color AIWA TV.

I would like to see some articles on Tv-in/out(Video in/out) support.

Santosh Kumar Pasi

A parallel connection.

Sat, 22 Jul 2000 11:25:11 -0700
From: "Sergey Bogdanov" (desprojects@yahoo.com)

Hi there, My name Sergey, I use Slackware 7.0. I have read a document about serial connection between Win95 and Linux, but never have seen about paralel. Help me, tell me how can I use my parallel NULL modem. Is lp0 the LPT1 port?


[ There's a PLIP-install-HOWTO but not one for connecting to Windows, nor even between two Linux boxes that are in a normal installed state. Anyone got something for him?

Oh, and it can't be a null modem, modems are serial. A crossover parallel cord is sometimes called a "Laplink" or "Commander Link" cable, after those popular apps for a certain non-Linux platform. -- Ed.]

'to be cleaned' State of DAT Drives

Tue, 30 May 2000 13:08:23 +0200
From: "Holger Ahrens" (h.ahrens@btnet.de)

Request status of DAT TAPE's 'tape to be cleaned' using a.e. mt (magnet tape) command.

Is it somehow possible to detect the state 'Cleaning required' remotely. The only sign I know is the blinking LED in front of of DAT-Tape. But we have distributed Server and I 'm not happy with the idea to ask the users 'is there some kind of LED blinking in a strange way' while they are in front of allover blinking LEDs and beeping computer speakers. I am shure THEIR answer will never be the answer according MY question.


CB Radio Internet Connection

Thu, 8 Jun 2000 12:13:02 -0700
From: "Wayne" (wayne@vangani.co.za)

Dear answerguys.

My name is Wayne. I work at an ISP in South Africa. The network administrator here told me that it was possible to use a short distance CB two way radio to be able to transfer data between two machines. Is it at all possible u ppl could be so kind, as to mail a way of connecting one of these things to my machine.

Thank you very much


Tue, 4 Jul 2000 09:42:05 -0700 (PDT)
From: Doug Cunningham (douglasc_99@yahoo.com)

Hi Answerguy-
Can you tell me what the PASSWORD page on the SWAT does? I have some familiarity with Samba, and I have been to the samba.org site but I still nedd help with this.

Accessing a web server behind a Linux firewall

Fri, 26 May 2000 17:49:15 -0400
From: "Hutchings, Darren" (dhutchings@ca.mastech.com)

Hi there.

I have set up a linux firewall, but one of the things I would like to do with it (which I have so far been unable to accomplish) is access use port forwarding to access a web server situated behind the firewall from a client on the public internet.

I am using ipchains as my firewall mechanism, and have used redir and ipmasqadm with no luck.

I am convinced that the problem lies somewhere in my ipchains scripting, but I am not sure what to look for. I have looked through various howto's and webpages and am stuck.

What I was wondering is if you had a basic ipchains script that works in conjunction with ipmasqadm to forward port 80 through to a web server behind a firewall.

Any help that you can offer would be great!

Darren Hutchings

[ In this case there are almost too many HOWTOs ... which are difficult to read for a complete novice to networking. Numerous tools exist but they expect you to know what logic you want to apply, rather than what results you would like. If one of you gentle readers knows about a useful "wizard" style tool for making sensible ipchains, or a similar one for the up-and-coming netfilters, reviewing it for us would make an excellent article. -- Ed.]

Linux Distros Install Programs

Thu, 29 Jun 2000 23:30:34 -0700
From: "Botong San Beda" (botong@visto.com)


I would like to create a Linux distribution from scratch and integrate with it an installer program using my native language. I was wondering if you could assist me in finding installer programs for existing Linux distros ( GUI, cli or curses-based, and whatever language -- shell script, Python, GTK, etc). BTW, are the installer programs of Mandrake, or Red Hat like Anaconda or their curses/text-based programs/scripts GPL'ed too?


Botong San Beda

serial consoles, install, boot, etc

Fri, 7 Jul 2000 00:08:22 -0400
From: "Joseph Annino" (anninj@alum.rpi.edu)

One thing that is really great about Sun hardware is that you can get rid of the monitor, mouse, and keyboard all together and do everything from install the operating system to change EEPROM settings via a serial console. While Intel hardware was never designed this way, I cannot find much information about setting up Linux on Intel to approximate this. Is it possible to install and boot Linux over a serial console? Log-in in this way is easy, but to be able to completely administer a system the install and boot functions are critical, especially the Lilo prompt would be nice.

Re-installing Windows 98 on a Linux (Mandrake 7.0) OS.

Fri, 7 Jul 2000 23:24:17 -0400
From: georges train (gdvt@mindspring.com)

I have Mandrake 7.0 installed on my IBM compatible PC. I want to take tech. classes with Manpower over the Internet. They told me that they don't support Linux OS, only Microsoft Windows 95, 98, and NT. Do I install Linux Prep Tool and follow the steps to create a dual boot system over Mandrake 7.0? I'd appreciated any help you can give me!

Georges Train

Connection to XServer and sendmail

Mon, 29 May 2000 15:22:30 +0800
From: "Boucek, Jan" (Jan.Boucek@health.wa.gov.au)


I got stuck with 2 problems:

1) tried to dump screen content using a cron job. It basically is using ImageMagick command import:

import -display -window root fru.tif

However command fails (when run by crond, otherwise it runs from xterm just fine) with following message:

Xlib: connection to "" refused by server.
Xlib: Client is not authorized to connect to server.
import: Unable to connect to X server (

It should be noted that is localhost. It fails no matter if I'm root or not. What sort of authorization do I need to connect to XServer from cron?

2)My sendmail daemon takes ages to startup. When I checked the log it says few times: May 29 08:52:03 piii sendmail [24126]: My unqualified host name (piii) unknown; sleeping for retry.

It should be noted that piii is the localhost defined in hosts file. Furthermore when I tried to check the mail as a user it says it cannot find the spool file. I can create it manually but is it going to work? What sort of configuration I need to do for sendmail when I need send and receive mail only locally (mail exchange among local users only)?

Thanks in advance,


procmail arguement list

Mon, 19 Jun 2000 18:06:57 -0700
From: "D. Scott Lowrie" (slowrie@DataPathSystems.Com)


Ive been able to use procmail when I send the mail to &myuserid+keyword.

Where I assign a variable (say PLUSARG=$1).

I can use the variable PLUSARG to base some procmail recipes.

So what's the question??? well it seems if I us and alieas set up for me and the "+keyword" syntax that procmail doesn't pass the "+keyword" in as the $1 parameter. E.G. $1 is found when I use myid+keyword but not with alieasId+keyword.


Scott Lowrie

kppp dialer.

Sat, 15 Jul 2000 23:46:03 -0400
From: "Andrew C. Andrianos" (102421.2357@compuserve.com)

Hello Mr. Dennis!

I have had a problem writing a login script for compuserve in kppp dialer

The compuserve login procedure requires that the port bits be set initially to 7 bit and later to 8 bit.

Also, it requires the setting of parity bit.

The kppp dialer help section on login scripts indicates there is a MODE command that make it possible to set the port bits to 7 or 8 bits. But, the problem it is not in the program in the section where you type in the login script. They totally omitted this command. Also, how do you send a ^M(I think this a control M) in the kppp login script? Also, how do handle the parity bits? I am connecting to compuserve but I am getting an error message on the setting of the 8bits.


I did check with compuserve and Red Hat Software and neither one could help me. I am using Red Hat 6.2. I am using the kppp dialer that came with the Red Hat 6.2.

If you could help me with this, I would appreciate it very much. I look forward to your comments in your Answerguy column.

Thank you.

Andy Andrianos

-- attachment follows --

; This is a script file that demonstrates how
; to establish a PPP connection with Compuserve,
; which requires changing the port settings to
; log in.

; Main entry point to script
proc main

; Set the port settings so we can wait for
; non-gibberish text.

set port databits 7
set port parity even

transmit "^M"

waitfor "Host Name:"
transmit "CIS^M"

waitfor "User ID:"
transmit "your user ID"
transmit "/go:pppconnect^M"

waitfor "Password:"
transmit "your password"
transmit "^M"

waitfor "One moment please..."

; Set the port settings back to allow successful
; negotiation.

set port databits 8
set port parity none


MAC Address Direct Connection

Fri, 9 Jun 2000 01:55:32 -0500
From: "King, Scott" (sking@covenantseminary.edu)

Greetings. I am going crazy trying to figure out how to do what seems like a simple task. In VMS I was able to change into the NCP (Network Control Program) shell and connect to another device over layer 2 on a flat network. I believe the syntax was:

NCP> connect via ewa-0 physical address 00-c0-75-00-21-00

ewa-0 being the nic of the localhost, and the final number being the destination MAC address. I could establish what was basically a telnet session, but the device did not have to be configured with a correct IP address for my subnet. This is a much quicker way to configure a device than hooking up a console to it. When I was remote, I was able to telnet to VMS (when I had a VMS box) and NCP to a device on that local net.

Is there any way to accomplish this same end in Linux? I don't want my boss tauting VMS over against Linux you know!

Thank you for your efforts.

Sincerely, Scott A. King

Swapping ega for vga+

Sat, 17 Jun 2000 00:36:58 +0100 (BST)
From: Stuart Winter (polplex@mailbox.co.uk)


I've got an old Compaq Prosignia with onboard graphics "card". The problem is that the parallel port is located at 0x3bc, irq 7. For the console monitor, I use an HP VGA mono monitor. The problem with this is that Linux decides that it's going to use ega rather than vga+. ega then tramples over my parallel port resources so that I can't use it.

If I boot the box without a monitor, or with a colour SVGA monitor, vga+ is then used, which uses different resources, hence allowing the parallel port to work.

I've already tried to compile certain things in and out of the Kernel before I realised that simply taking unplugging the monitor lead fixed it. My question is: is there any way that I can either alter the resources (io and IRQ) that the ega driver uses, or force it to use vga+ ? The monitor I use for it is VGA anyway - and it's console only - not used for X.


Using Hindi in Emacs

Sun, 23 Jul 2000 01:36:56 +0100 (BST)
From: Aseem Asthana (aseemasthana@yahoo.co.in)


I have a computer at home that has Linux (RH) 6.0 on it.. In my emacs I can set the coding to Devnagri. But I wonder how can I get anything to type on the screen. I am sure that I need to use a different inout system. But what? Additionally, what do I have to do if I want to install support for more languages.

Any pointer on this direction.


swapoff swapon

Tue, 13 Jun 2000 21:49:22 -0600
From: AccessWest (support@accesswest.com)

Dear Sir:

I had heard that there is some advantage in clearing server swap space each night, by running swapoff followed by swapon as a cron job.

What's your thoughts on this ?

Robert Dalton

pop over ssh

Tue, 20 Jun 2000 21:22:38 -0700
From: David Benfell (benfell@greybeard95a.com)

Hi Jim and Heather,

This ought to be an FAQ, or, at least, fodder for your Answer Guy column:

I've been trying to set up pop over ssh. It isn't working.

To test it, I've been trying to retrieve e-mail which steadily accumulates on my new server, running qmail and it's pop daemon. I've also been trying to retrieve an e-mail sent to your antares.starshine.org, since I have great confidence that your pop server works.

I'm following the directions in the pop over ssh mini-HOWTO. It still doesn't work.

First, it isn't retrieving the mail. Second, it asks me for the passwords every time. I thought the idea was to automate this so I wouldn't have to type in the passwords every time.

At this point, I'm fairly dazed and confused.

I've run ssh-keygen on both machines and copied the keys back to the authorized_keys file on my laptop to which I'm trying to retrieve the e-mail. When I do ssh-agent getmail, it asks for the passphrase. Okay, that much I expected.

Then, as I said above, it asks for the password for each server I'm connecting to. That would be fine, if it never asked again. But, five minutes later, it's forgotten the passwords and I have to type them in again. And so it goes, on and on.

-- David Benfell

FTP restart Q

Sat, 08 Jul 2000 23:16:12 -0400
From: Faber Fedor (revf2@interactive.net)

Hello Jim, Heather and the new Answer Gang!

One of my clients has "seen the light" and is installing a rather heavy-duty Linux box (PIII 600 Mhz, 256 Meg RAM, and five 9 Gig hard drives configured as RAID 5) as their main server. Two of their requirements are secure ftp (I'm leaning towards sftp even if it is commercial) and, this is the kicker, the ability to restart a failed (unattended) ftp transfer.

After hitting Freshemat and Google/linux, I've found that the RFC for ftp loosely defines a restart mechanism using a marker, but I've yet to find an ftp client/server that actually implements it. The FAQ for ssh/sftp does not mention this capability.

Anyone in the Answer Gang have a brilliant answer/solution? :-)

-- Faber Fedor, RHCE, MCSE, MCT


Sun, 09 Jul 2000 08:46:58 PDT
From: "John Langley" (john_p_langley@hotmail.com)

Hi Answerguy James T. Dennis,

I was pointed to your site through the linuxdoc site.

Perhaps I cna be so bold as to ask a question. I have Debian 2.1, and xdm 3.3.?.

I reinstalled fvwm95 the other night using dselect, and now xdm will not launch any windows manager. The xserver is up and running, I get the login screen. When I type my name and password, it tries to launch a windows manager, and then, not being able to, reverts to the login screen again.

I am able to launch a windows environment by killing xdm under su, and then as user, executing xinit, and launching fvwm95 through a bash shell from the grey root screen. This is a bit of a kludge, really.

I think that it has to do with file permissions, as fvwm works fine (apart from the keyboard mappings).

There is no report of errors in .xsession-errors, or of problems in /var/log/xdm.log, other than a report of me killing it.

I am sure the problem is very simple to you.

John Langley,

HELP: Crontab not running nested executable

Tue, 11 Jul 2000 12:09:27 +1000
From: "Mick Faber" (mick@videoscreens.com)

First of all, I am sorry if it shouldn't come to you like this. Could you let me know who to send this email to, if there is a dedicated address?


I have two executable files that work when called manually. File2 is called from within File1 so that when I run File1, File2 gets called as well.

When I set a CRONTAB job to run File1 (with the nested call to File2) , File1 runs, but File2 doesn't.

That's the simplified version.

The detailed version is that File1 dials out to an FTP server and downloads File2 which is then supposed to run. I stress that when I manually run File1, File2 is downloaded and runs correctly. When within a crontab job, File1 runs, but doesn't appear to activate File2.

Is there something I am missing. My only thoughts lie in the fact that perhaps I need to chmod the file in a different way, for it to be called from within a crontab job successfully.

Any thoughts or Pointers?


Gnome panel left me! I want it back.

Fri, 21 Jul 2000 14:25:41 +0100
From: hackenbush (hakata@earthling.net)

Dear Answerguy(s),

I'm a complete Linux newbie. Just installed LinuxPPC2000 on my imac. Partitioned fine, installed fine. Got the penguin, then logged into Gnome. Felt great. Went to create NewUser. Made big mistake. I created new Gnome Icon in the panel. I don't want two. So I remove the panel. But, and I'm in root of course, it removes the whole panel, not just the icon. I go to new shell and type in shutdown commands. Re-login, but Gnome has lost it's panel. How do I get it back?

I hope this mail doesn't clog up your mailbox unnecessarily, but I thought you could help.

Thanks for your time


Netware login in without IPX

Mon, 29 May 2000 11:42:33 +0800
From: "Kheng Teong Goh" (gk7eong@mailcityasia.com)


The company I'm working for is using Netware 4.1. And it is the company policy not to use IPX protocol. So, all Windows clients login into the server using IP protocol.

Is there any netware client for linux that uses IP to talk to the server? So far if I have not mistaken, all (ncpfs,nwclient and mars) uses IPX to talk to the server.

If there's no available software that I can use. Is there a work around it? Can I modify some settings on those client which makes them uses IP instead of IPX?

Is there anyway for me to make Linux login to NDS without sepcial clients?

Please tell me as soon as possible. I need the answer urgently. Thank you in advance.

Best Regards,

Kheng Teong


Wed, 14 Jun 2000 16:54:19 -0400
From: "Shane Moore" (smoore@NIAs.com)

I can't seem to find any detailed information on this and wondered if you might have some ideas. Normally I deal with large ethernet/atm/etc type networks. This is my first small time network that uses

First some information. I have a server that uses PPP with an ISDN modem. I am using diald to connect. I use this server to provide network service for an internal network. Right now, everything works, but I need to have the ISDN modem drop its connection when not needed and then re-connect when someone tries to use the interent.

Here is my connect script information

fifo /usr/lib/diald/diald.ctl
mode ppp
connect "sh /etc/ppp/connect"
device /dev/ttyS1
speed 115200
local xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx <--- static IP
remote xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx <--- static IP
pppd-options noauth
include /usr/lib/diald/standard.filter
ip-up /etc/firewall.rules
ip-down /etc/firewall.reset

Any idea on how to this or where I can find any information? Thank you for your time.

Well known Port numbers

Wed, 14 Jun 2000 11:18:26 -0400
From: Deane Potter (dpotter@carepartners.org)

Dear Mr. AnswerGuy...

Can you provide me with a good list of well known port numbers for TCP and UDP? I am trying to decipher another netguy's packet filters and am stumped by a few. Is there an all-inclusive list somewhere???

Can't find info on the following ports:

TCP: 27, 109, 139, 1547, 7777

UDP: 67, 137, 138, 5631, 5632, 7648, 7649

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

i740 - OpenGL?? Possible ?

Fri, 14 Jul 2000 00:28:40 +1000
From: "Andrew Nye" (andcorp@softhome.net)

Gidday after readin your colum and coming across your previous post in regards to the i740 i was wondering to what extent does linux have 3d support. I have heard rumors in regards to later kernels supporting other 3d features.

To be more to the point to what extent am i likely to get linux running 3d progams on my i740? and if it is possible how whould I be likly to do this ... as you can tell Im very new to linux and have so far been astounded by it... a truly wonderfull os for the peoples .. i hope that some day gnome etc will come with afeature set for the truly dumb user (with out loosing the advanced userset!) so we can kick microsoft off its high chair.

anyway thank you for your time.

Andrew Nye

Syslog for Linux

Tue, 30 May 2000 16:03:51 -0400
From: "Villamagna, Domenick" (dvillamagna@doubleclick.net)


I am running Red Hat Linux 6.2 & am trying to get a syslog server running. I have limited Linux knowledge & just want to get it working to log messages from cisco devices. Do you know of the commands to get it working.

Thanks in advance,

Domenick Villamagna
Network Engineer


Wed, 31 May 2000 20:18:56 GMT
From: "Nathan F." (ionate@hotmail.com)

Hello! Excuse the beginner question, but I was wondering how in the heck to install and run DEVFS in my RedHat 6.2 linux OS?

I never saw the option under menuconfig, and whenever I try to do something like "mount -t devfs none /devfs" it says that the kernel doesn't support it.

  1. how do I go about adding it during the kernel compile (or during RedHat Setup)?
  2. is there something to add in the makefile?
    last but not least,
  3. What is the variable that is used during boot up that determines whether or not to use devfs?

thx in adv!


web upload w/Perl

5 Jun 00 08:38:38 EDT
From: Peter Tapolyai (pepis@netscape.net)

Hi James:

Here is my question, I could not get a satisfactory answer from any of the newsgroups: comp.lang.perl.misc, comp.os.linux, etc.

I want the user to be able to upload a file via the browser's file form object. The file would go to /cgi-bin/docs directory, for about a second where it will be read into mySQL and then deleted from that directory.

Anyway, this cgi runs on Linux with Apache 1.3.9. I even downloaded the latest, 1.3.12 and compiled it with mod_put.c into it. THe docs directory has 777 permissions temporarily. The script is written in Perl. After executing the CGI script I have a 0K file created in the docs dir but the file is empty.What is going on? How could I get this working?

For reference I include the code Perl here. THanks for the help.


use CGI;
$q = new CGI;
$upload_file = $q->param("upload_file");
$upload_file =~ s/^.*(\\|\/)//;

print "Content-type: text/html\n\n";
print "<html><head><title>Upload</title></head>\n<body


print "<h2>File Upload</h2>\n";
if ($upload_file) {
   open(UPLOADED, ">/var/lib/apache/cgi-bin/docs/$upload_file") || print "Couldn't open $file :: <b> $!</b>";
   binmode UPLOADED;
   while ($size = read($upload_file, $buffer, 1024)) {
        print(UPLOADED $buffer)
   }  # end while
   print "$upload_file\n";
}  # end if

print "<p>\n<b>Files in upload directory:</b><br>\n"; $path = "docs";
opendir (DIRHANDLE, "$path") || print "Can't open directory $path <b>$!</b><br>\n";

while (defined ($files=readdir(DIRHANDLE))){
    print "  $files<br>\n" if ($files !~ /^\.{1,2}$/); }  # end while

print "</body></html>";

Chat server

31 Jul 2000 15:48:07 +0530
From: Manoj Raut (manoj@indobuzz.com)

I need information regarding chat server on linux.

General Mail

 Mon, 3 Jul 2000 15:55:47 -0400 (EDT)
From: Karl Pena <karl@tux.org>
Subject: Linux Bike Project

Hello Linux Gazette!

Today (July 3, 2000) I found your kind posting of a requested comment I sent a long time ago (August 1999). You could not imagine my heartfelt glee (goosebumps) when I saw it (at the URL below).

Thank you so much for putting that up, or even responding to it. Reactions to the Linux Bike Project have been extremely positive across the board, and a few wonderful open-source community players have taken interest in participating. I am still brainstorming and drafting out ideas and details for the epic bike ride, and would love to speak with you if possible (even just to say 'thank you' directly).

You can reach me at the following email address now: karl@tux.org

THANK YOU again, and have a wonderful day!

Yours sincerely,
Karl G. Pena

[Karl is planning a bicycle ride across the US to promote Linux. He promises to send updates to LG during the ride. He is looking for sponsors for his trip. If you'd like to help, contact him at the address above. -Mike.]

 Sun, 2 Jul 2000 17:46:21 +0200 (MET DST)
From: Jan-Hendrik Terstegge <webmaster@linuxgazette.de>
Subject: German LG translation needs web hosting

Do you know a website hoster which is free and without advertisement? We have a problem with the German translation of the Gazette in that we don't have any space on a web server so we have to use free web space offers. Do you know if one of your sponsors can offer us an account where we can upload up to 10 or later 20 MB?

 Sun, 2 Jul 2000 17:46:21 +0200 (MET DST)
From: Werner Gerstmann <101.234011@germanynet.de>
Subject: translations of LG

Hallo there,
LG#55, general Mail, translations of LG.
I think, it is a nonsense to translate English written computer texts: it is a matter of general education to read English just as to be able to read and write in your own language or to know some basic mathematics. Regards Werner Gerstmann

The Editor wrote:

While it may be true that university-educated people in a technical field should be able to read computer articles in English, I don't think that's a reasonable expectation for everybody in the world. One of the advantages of Linux over other OSes is that it's more international, so people are on more of an equal footing than with some other OSes whose corporate headquarters is in an English-speaking country. Another advantage is that it's accessible to people who can't afford to spend a month's salary on one copy of Windows 2000. These two facts alone mean Linux will be (and is being) used in non-English speaking countries in ways that, um, No Other Operating System Has Been Used Before... <Star Trek music in background> This means that people in those countries will eventually contribute (and are contributing) Linux software that wouldn't otherwise exist.

Some of these contributions will be by people whose day job is not in the computer industry. Thus, they may have less of a reason to study English. Or, maybe they can read the English Gazette but prefer not to. Or maybe they're willing to read the English version, but would also like to share the articles with family and friends who aren't computer nerds and maybe don't speak English either. What's wrong with that? If it's making their use of Linux "just a little bit more fun", then Linux Gazette is reaching its goal, no matter what language it's in.

Werner responded:

Thank you for your mail on the translation issue, even though I wont change my opinion !

What we need, or better, what I consider desirable, is a special online dictionary on certain new terms, not too simple, in English, of course, like the Jargon File.

Take e.g. the articles in the Linux Journal: what regards language, they are of very different level, beginning with What is Linux up to the sophi sticated papers of Doc Searls and Stan Kelly-Bootle. Especially Mr. Kelly-Bootle seems to invent new word combinations and, of course, you have to think about such compositions as beyond-the-soggy-pale or cosource-sweet-value-added, even if your mothers tongue is English, I suppose. If I looked into my large Pons dictionary, I didnt find words like kludgy or to shrink-wrap. These words I found in the excellent online dictionary of Munich University at www.leo.org.

 Sat, 15 Jul 2000 08:38:59 +0400
From: "Felipe E. Barousse Boue" <firaisankina@dts.mg>
Subject: Spanish translation

[I asked Felipe Barousse how his new Spanish translation of LG is going. I was surprised to discover it's going much better than I expected, even though it's been in operation only two months! I couldn't wait to share the news. -Mike.]

Hi Mike:

Well, I have not counted all emails. But we have had many many emails with congratulations about the site. There are around 70 registered translators and about 25 of those have actually done translations; the rest either are in the process of translating something or said they will do so.

With every new issue and announcement, traffic goes up very high and slowly starts fading out during the course of the month, unless some new announcement -kind of kick out everyone's curiosity- is made.

La Gaceta de Linux is being linked from several linux related sites (Spanish speaking most of them) and we are in a couple of search engines now.

In short, I guess that for two months online this is doing well. What is your opinion about it ?

Actually a great effort from volunteers within the company has been put out to build, install and manage the site.

meanwhile, Luis Diaz G. <hlod_wig137@hotmail.com> wrote:

Hola!!! Seria una buena idea que la revista estubiese traducida a otra lengua, por ejemplo al Español, por poner un ejemplo. Saludos desde España.

[He said, "Hi. It would be a good idea if the magazine was translated into other languages; for example, Spanish. Greetings from Spain." -Mike.]

Felipe responded:

Hola Luis:

Recibí copia de tu mensaje del editor de Linux Gazette. Te invitamos a que visites la traducción de la revista Linux Gazette en http://gaceta.piensa.com/ Aqui tenemos traducción de los últimos número de la revista y con serías intenciones de seguir traduciendo los número anteriores.

Trabajamos con voluntarios de todo el mundo para realizar las traducciones al Español.

Te esperamos en La Gaceta de Linux.

Saludos desde Ciudad de Mexico

Felipe Barousse

[He said, "Hi Luis. I received a copy of your message from the Editor of Linux Gazette. I invite you to visit the translation of the magazine Linux Gazette at http://gaceta.piensa.com. Here we have a translation of the most recent issues, and we seriously intend to translate the previous issues also. We work with volunteers from all over the world to do the translations. We await your visit to La Gaceta de Linux. Greetings from Mexico City. Felipe Barousse." -Mike.]

 Sun, 9 Jul 2000 04:19:02 -0400
From: Dean Maluski <dean@mail.n0ety.com>
Subject: Windows Partitions

I work at a TV station as System Administrator. This week a hard drive failed in a computer, a very important computer. It controls 7 satellite dishes, the azimuth and elevation can be adjusted from this machine. Also the 7 receiver frequencies can be adjusted from this windows machine. Without it we get no video feeds and have to order shows on tape, which costs the station a great deal of money.

Now that I've given you the basics let me tell you how Linux saved the day. When this hard drive failed windows could no longer determine what type of partitions the drive had. I tried setting it up as a slave drive so I could salvage our satellite software, windows couldn't see it so I booted with Slackware rescue disks, ran fdisk and set the partitions to be Windows FAT 16. Rebooted win98 in dos prompt mode and managed to copy ini files off it. With those ini files I was able to reconstruct another system. After that I made several backups of the ini files. Linux gained a great deal of respect within Tribune Broadcasting this week!!!

Questions on Linux

26 Jun 00 19:20:35 PDT
From: Allen Grayson (amgrayson@netscape.net)

I'm a Newbie.

I saw some of your answers in the Linux Gazette. Is this still active, if yes how do I subscribe.

The Linux Gazette is published at the beginning of every month, on the website http://www.linuxgazette.net.

After that, with volunteer effort, it is mirrored to locations throughout the world, translated, and added into most major distributions as part of the Linux Documentation Project. Back issues may be in your /usr/doc/ directory right now... The LDP's home is http://www.linuxdoc.org.

You could probably use a website page-checking service to advise you when the Front Page changes to list new issues.

Is there a simple way to change the font type & size that EMACS uses. For example in some type of resource file?

For this part, one of our readers or the Answer Gang will have to help.

TIA, Allen Grayson

You're welcome.

Career or Job Board Software

Thu, 01 Jun 2000 10:37:04 MST
From: "Steve Hasz" (r_not@hotmail.com)

SSC's webmaster was asked:

Hi, I am looking for an open source job center management program. Is the one you use in your jobs section open source? Can you recommend one? We are starting a small site in Phoenix and would like to integrate something useful for careers.

Thanks, Steve Hasz

I'm at work, you can reply to the above address or steve@hasz.com

The Career Center on the Linux Journal site is not open source at present. Linux Gazette's "Help Wanted" section is not about job offers, but about people seeking help with different aspects of Linux. Since you're seeking help about an aspect of Linux, we've put your letter here. (Actually, in the "General Mail" section, but at least it's the same page.

We build this page, as well as 2-Cent Tips and The Answer Gang, with the aid of some hand-crafter Perl and Python scripts. We sort the letters into standard Unix mailboxes with particular filenames, and the scripts convert them to HTML. However, we also post-process each column by hand to do things the scripts can't.

Freshmeat.net is a canonical site for looking for open-source software; the CPAN project (a perl script archive at cpan.org) may also be useful.

For examples of other functioning job centers--or to find a developer to write one for you--see www.cosource.com and www.sourcexchange.com . There are also a few other companies offering a similar service.

Perhaps you can adapt one of Linux's general "trouble ticket"-tracking applications like gnats and jitterbug for your purposes.

-Heather and Mike

Steve wrote back:

Thanks for your response! We decided to just have one of our open source developers write something, which turned out quite well. We actually created our entire site and run it using only modified open source.

In case you are interested, we are in public beta at http://www.aztechbiz.com/.

 Wed, 5 Jul 2000 20:40:47 +0100
From: Ed Brown <edbrown@go-britain.com>
Subject: Ventura under Linux

I noticed that you mentioned that you use Ventura for some of your work. Is this a beta of the Linux version due in a few months?

[Are you talking about Warren Young's letter in http://linuxgazette.net/issue41/lg_mail41.html?

You can write to him and ask what he knows. Corel has ported several of their applications to Linux, and just released Corel PHOTO-PAINT for Linux. I don't use graphics programs except for basic retouching in the Gimp, so I don't know much about Corel's products. -Mike.]

 Sun, 9 Jul 2000 17:59:39 +0900
From: Lance Lindley <hagakure@yahoo.com>
Subject: Hi folks

Thanks for some great information. However, here's my suggestion:

PROBLEM: Not much point in having terrific information if nobody knows it is there!

SOLUTION: Add a few two-or-three word synopses of what is in each issue to your Table of Contents. Big time investment initially, but very useful in the long run and easy to maintain once you've got it in place.

 Tue, 11 Jul 2000 14:05:37 +0200 (CEST)
From: Christoph Lange <langec@gmx.de>
Subject: Separate all-in-one version?

could you please offer the all-in-one version of the Linux Gazette (HTML as well as text) as a separate download? I don't understand why I have to download these two files with every issue. Separating them from the standard package would decrease it by ~ 1/3 of its size without any loss of information.

[The all-in-one version requires some of the other files anyway (e.g., images, program listings, HTML files not part of the main article page). The decision to not make separate packages for the all-in-one versions was made by the former Editor (hi Margie!), because we already offer the Gazette in a variety of formats and we can't customize it to everybody's liking.

We have a new Editor coming on board next month, Don Marti, so I'll leave him the decision whether to change things. -Mike.]

 Tue, 25 Jul 2000 13:50:50 -0600
From: Doug <doug@springer.net>
Subject: Please remove bogus Posting!

Hello, Can you please remove the posting with the following header:

Fri, 2 Jun 2000 11:48:21 -0600
From: "Tom Russell" <doug@springer.net>
Subject: How to run Windows programs on Linux

at this location: http://www.linuxdoc.org/LDP/LG/issue55/lg_mail55.html

I do not know who Tom Russell is or why my email address is listed under his name, but I am tired of people sending me emails about WINE!!!! I know all about WINE, and I don't want or need a hundred people telling me to check it out!

Please remove this for me! Please!!

Thank you,
Doug Springer

[OK, I removed the e-mail address. It must have been a formatting error when the column was made, that caused your e-mail address to leak through from your letter onto that one. -Mike.]

 Sat, 1 Jul 2000 20:15:58 +0100
From: David Andrew Williams <andy.d.williams@btinternet.com>
Subject: linux cad programs

Dear Editor,

Your roundup of cad programs for Linux misses a program called LinuxCAD mentioned as far back as issue 30 and in some more recent issues as well so it seems to be popular.

I'm sure some of the other programs mentioned in the recent issue can also be found mentioned in older issues.


 Sat, 15 Jul 2000 08:38:59 +0400
From: Mr. Mamodaly <firaisankina@dts.mg>
Subject: subscribe

[Subscribe to what?

For the lg-announce mailing list, send "subscribe lg-announce my_address@site.com" in the message body to majordomo@ssc.com.

Linux Gazette itself is not available via e-mail. For the reason why and other options, see the LJ FAQ, questions 2-4, at http://www.linuxgazette.net/faq/index.html . -Mike.]

 Wed, 5 Jul 2000 10:28:16 -0700
From: Mike Orr <mso@mso.oz.net>
Subject: Trivia for the day

$ tm
bash: tm: command not found

I guess the computer doesn't do Transcendental Meditation.

This page written and maintained by the Editors of the Linux Gazette. Copyright © 2000, gazette@linuxgazette.net
Published in Issue 56 of Linux Gazette, August 2000
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