Further DG834G work

Oct 26, 2005 / 0 comments

I finally found some time to devote to hacking on the DG834G. Given that it seems the bootloader checksums almost the entire flash on each boot a writeable flash file system doesn't seem to be an easy option. This rules out vanilla OpenWRT unfortunately, which is a shame given the AR7Port. However as I'm familiar with OpenEmbedded (which seems to be non working at present, but is behind OpenZaurus which I run on my C3000) I decided to have a look at getting that going. So now I have an image that boots, creates a ramfs for /, pivotroots the flash round to /media/realroot, creates a bunch of symlinks and should give me a basic filesystem to play with.

Except it's not very happy, producing INIT: PANIC: segmentation violation! sleeping for 30 seconds. messages. Booting to just /bin/sh works fine, but various things won't run. I'm currently blaming this on the fact I haven't changed the default Netgear kernel from 2.4.17, so the next course of action is probably to use an OpenWRT based kernel and see how that goes.

Goddamn stupid firewalling

Oct 21, 2005 / 0 comments

Dear World,

ping is a very useful command. It lets me see if a host is up. If you block ICMP ECHO/REPLY then I instead have to play the "Guess what service might be listening" game. Or I assume your machine is down and might worry (because I care). So please don't do it. I really don't see what you're trying to gain; it strikes me as firewalling without actually thinking about it. Are you by chance ignoring things like destination unreachable as well? And breaking PMTU discovery? Well done you.

Oct 19, 2005 / 0 comments

From an ubuntu-announce mail just received:

A slim default installation, occupying just 400 megabytes

Now I'm not picking on Ubuntu in particular here, but the word just really does seem to indicate that Tom Womack's proclamation that "Disk space is cheap" just continues to get truer and truer. My first well used Linux install was on a 40MB disk and I'm prepared to bet there are plenty of people who started with less. Even these days people like OpenWRT are producing distros that fit in 8MB of flash. I think it's a sad reflection that 400MB is considered a small footprint for a mainstream distro.

Google knows all

Oct 11, 2005 / 0 comments

In the top hit for a Google on "Jonathan needs": Jonathan needs to start drinking more beer

New GPG key

Oct 3, 2005 / 0 comments

Ages ago I got round to getting a smartcard reader and ordering a couple of OpenPGP smartcards from Kernel Concepts (who were very helpful and quite happy to deal in English via email). Unfortunately this all didn't arrive in time for the yearly Debian UK BBQ, so I missed getting a new key signed there. However, with the forthcoming Linux World Expo I thought I should get round to sorting out a new key. Much faffing later and I now have a key, 0xF4A8B30C, which has never been stored on a networked host (or indeed one with writable persistent storage). Though of course I'm doomed as soon as RSA is cracked, either by cunning maths or quantum computing. 0x5B430367 is still valid and I'll still be using it in general, but I'll probably expire my old PGP Type 3 key, 0x4DC4E7FD. I can't imagine anyone's tied to PGP 2 these days and there are flaws with the old key format AIUI.

So, anyway. Come to LinuxWorldExpo (I should be around the Debian stand for most of Thursday) and sign my new key. :)

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