Archive for May, 2012

64-bit IE9 testing

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

As part of the new project at work, I’m building a stable of every possible combination of browser and OS. Even with our fancy-schmancy virtual machine lab, it still takes an annoying amount of time, made more tedious by how it turns out that there are significant differences in how 64 and 32 bit IE9 handle certificates and java applets.

Under a 32-bit IE9, when you visit a website with a self-signed certificate, and java applet, you are presented with warnings, but are allowed to load the app. Under 64-bit IE9, you aren’t allowed to load the app at all. I continue to investigate.

UPDATE: Interesting, the problem goes away with java 7 installed instead of java 6. Of course I didn’t write the product requirements, so it really may have just shifted the problem along the road a bit =p

Unsubscribe ‘fraud’

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

I really wish the CANSPAM act had bigger teeth. Maybe if they were facing million dollar fines, companies wouldn’t make their unsubscribe methods so annoying. When you require three clicks and manually typing in the email address that was part of the unsubscribe link, it is obvious you aren’t acting in good faith. On the plus side, it helps weed out companies who, if they are willing to contract with a company that uses such tactics, are probably willing to engage in other behaviors I consider unethical.

STAF and impersonated identities

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

Recently, one of my AIX test drones had to be rebuilt from the ground up. After IT had reinstalled the OS and tools, they turned the box back over to me for the finishing tasks necessary to use it as part of our automated test system. I did my part, and started a sample test run. Failures everywhere, and slow, oh so slower than things should be.

Debug, debug, debug, oh how curious, I’m getting permissions errors when I try to execute a remote command using ‘sudo’ via STAF.

Run ‘whoami’ as STAF remote command, return ‘root’. ‘visudo’ shows root and wheel have permissions to execute anything without a password.

But I’m seeing a password prompt written to /dev/console. hrm.

Oh look, in our code we tell STAF to impersonate another user. A user who is in the wheel group, so that still shouldn’t be a problem. But for some reason it is. Looking at the impersonated user,

$ groups
staff wheel

OK, visudo and make a copy of the wheel authorization line, but for the staff group.

Now things work OK.

Doesn’t seem right, but there it is. Something about running STAF as root, impersonating a user, who them calls sudo, trips up if the key-group isn’t the first group listed.

What else will be off?

Odd Effect

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

Listening to uptempo The Pogues, while feeling down, produces a weird combination of high energy and low expectations. A sort of singing-a-song-on-the-road-to-hell vibe.

Not Alone

Tuesday, May 29th, 2012

I should have signed up for the class right away. When I checked the motorcycle safety school schedule over the weekend, there were still slots available for the next weekend, but by the time I got around to actually signing up this morning, classes filled up through the end of next month. D’ohwell.

Memorial Day Weekend in review

Tuesday, May 29th, 2012

Started the weekend out slow, some fun at the work party, and then home to a hungry cat, nothing special as Friday nights go. Saturday morning, the sun was shining, so I broke fast in the park. Afterwords, I made my way up to Seattle Center to see Carly Calbero and Laura Love. Both did great sets; I’ve seen Carly before, she was her usual awesome self. I hadn’t seen Laura perform before, and she did not disappoint, managing to put out some serious energy.

When I got home from Folklife, I jumped on the scooter and headed out to look at a motorcycle, and ended up walking out with a new bike. By the time I got home again, there was an email offer from The Can Can, for a special price on a seated ticket to that night’s 10:30 show. I certainly couldn’t resist the chance to see the late version of Tune In Tokyo at such a bargain, and made my way down. As I expected, there’s a bit more skin than the early show, though still burlesque not stripping =p They had made a few other tweaks as well, and the scrolling backdrop worked much better than last time. Also, since I wasn’t full-meal hungry, I tried the poutine, and nom nom tasty indeed. It was somewhat amusing to listen to some guy in the standing-room only section, just over my shoulder, talking most of the evening about his sex life, to his two female friends. It was kinda funny to listen to him go on and on about how important physical attraction was for him, then contrast that with how he took care of himself. Let’s just say I agree with his friend that suggested a change in his standards. The waiter forgot to bring me more water and one of my drinks, distracted by the table next to me I guess, and felt bad enough that he comped all my drinks for the eve, which seemed a pleasant overreaction to one slow moment out of an evening of otherwise stellar service. But I won’t turn down a freebie =p

If there was any downside to the evening, it was that I was super sleepy all day Sunday and accomplished basically nothing, not even making it out to Folklife again. I did a few chores around the house at least. Played some ipad tower defense app.

Monday was another semi-busy day, with a very short kayaking trip (it was windy), lunch in the sun, and another walk through of Folklife.

The dangers of cut-n-paste

Friday, May 25th, 2012

As the battery on my EVT-168 is nearing the ends of it’s useful life, and I get ready to compare the costs of replacing the batteries, versus buying a gas-burner, scooter or full-on cycle, I’m checking out websites. On the Suzuki site, they have an entry-level bike, “single-cylinder road bike”, but you can tell they simply cut and pasted when they got to the features list, as it includes “that irresistible V-twin rumble.”

d’oha ha

UPDATE: I also find it funny, the first stop on my quest didn’t have a single bike in the style I’m looking for (similar to my old suzuki gt250), in part because I had cross-wired my memories, with that of the bike that was too tall for me to stand at red lights, the yamaha 500. I have been for some time thinking to myself that I haven’t seen a ‘new’ bike that I would buy, with everyone I see seeming to fit into either the crotch-rocket or wannabe-harley styles, and none of the simple-transportation I’m looking for. Well it turns out that Suzuki does carry a bike in the correct style, the TU250X, but the local Seattle dealer doesn’t seem to carry it. Is it a lack of local popularity, or a licensing restriction?

IDM (UltraEdit) customer service rocks

Friday, May 25th, 2012

I was impressed with the customer service at IDM today. I made a mistake, and sent them a message, more a comment than complaint even, suggesting that future iterations of the installer might give warning before people make the same mistake I did. First, they responded within 30 minutes, and secondly, the solution they offered went above and beyond my expectations. I almost wish I needed another copy. If you need a code editor, you could do far worse that going with UltraEdit.

Nancy Brinker does NOT care about women

Friday, May 25th, 2012

That is the only conclusion I can draw from her insistence that paying her the obscene amount of over $300,000 per year, is worth more than the future of the entire organization she claims to lead. Let’s suspend our disbelief that the Planned Parenthood decision wasn’t an intentional action on her part, that still gives her no excuse for continuing to siphon of valuable funds from the national organization, as it falls apart. She has single handedly cost thousands of women the help they so badly need, at their most vulnerable time, for no reason than her own greed and pride.

Thank goodness there are organizations led by people with integrity and honesty, who actually do care about helping people, that we can all donate to instead. I most look forward to the day that the Susan G Komen foundation announces they have fired Nancy Brinker, stripped her of any and all perks and pension, and have refocused themselves on research and care, instead of self-sustainment. If that day will never come, my next hope is to see the day the Susan G Komen foundation has to close it’s doors. The women of the world will be better of either way.

Summer downgrade

Thursday, May 24th, 2012

I’ve been thinking about cancelling TV service altogether, for at least the summer, if not longer. In the end, I went with downgrading to the cheapest package. When you consider the penalty for only having Internet ($10/month), it seemed worthwhile to keep a minimum level of service. If the rep wasn’t accurate, and it costs more than expected, well maybe that will convince me to fully kill my television.

Well, my television service, thanks to Amazon Prime, it’s not like I won’t still have plenty of TV to watch.

Also, there should be a law preventing companies from forcing you to listen to advertisements instead of hold music. I’d rather be annoyed at some muzak-wannabe than hear about some pay-per-view fight I wouldn’t watch if it was free.