Category Archives: Other

Technical as well as non-technical stuff that don’t belong to any other category…

Firefox 3.6 trouble…

Today I had to downgrade Firefox 3.6 to 3.5.8. Why? Firefox 3.6 breaks VMWare Server 2 web browser Console plugin (ok, I could live without that, using either IE 7 or desktop shortcut to each VM) and more importantly “My Oracle Support” flash based content. I hope Mozilla team will fix this, otherwise Google Chrome will likely become my primary web browser.

UTP – Wiring schema

In the past I didn’t really care for the proper color ordering of wires in 8P8C connectors (aka “RJ45”) while making UTP cables for my personal use. I knew that termination is standardized (T568A and T568B) but never took the time to memorize correct color termination – since I always needed “ordinary” UTP cables with straight through wired pins.
Of course, when you want to make a cross-over cable you need to know which pins need to be swapped. I found Wikipedia explanation so good and comprehensive that I decided to post a copy of schema termination picture here, for my future quick reference:

utp_wiring

From now on I’ll stick with T568B wiring schema when I’ll need to wire “ordinary” UTP cables. For the cross-over cable we need to use T568A at one end of the cable and T568B at the other. * [Note added: 5th December 2008]I soon realized I made a mistake, what I wrote is true for 10Base-T and 100Base-TX and not for 1000Base-TX cross-over cable.

10Base-T and 100Base-TX cross-over cable follows above schema, at one end of the cable is T568A and at the other end T568B.

Gigabit cross-over cables are different, as I realized only after I read Wikipedia piece. Gigabit cross-over cable follows this schema:

utp_wiring2

VMWare Server 2.0 – Released

I was using VMWare Workstation for years – mostly for OS & RDBMS testing. Nothing at production level. This will soon change. I’ll most likely use recently released VMWare Server 2.0 for some less critical production workload, replacing a couple of physical servers, plus my own workstation. I tested VMWare Server 2 RC2 and was happy with the design and even management console performance (I was expecting much worse performance after reading some feedbak on vmware forums – it’s not that bad). I’m planning Hyper-V evaluation on Windows 2008 as well. I do like both products, but Hyper-V poor performance for Linux guests (and no thanks, I refuse to use Suse, not now not in the future) will at the end most likely result in VMWare Server 2.0 deployment.

How to extend VMWare volume

I have a couple of VMWare guest machines (Windows XP & Windows 2003) with inappropriate sized disks. Instead of adding new disks I want to resize the existing ones. Quick search on Google revealed that this is quite easy to do. According to instructions found in Expanding a virtual disk and Increase your Virtual machine’s disk capacity the way to do it is:

1) Backup VM directory in case something goes wrong

2) After clean shutdown of VM resize the vmdisk with command line tool vmware-vdiskmanager.exe

cmd> "D:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Workstation\vmware-vdiskmanager.exe" -x 16Gb "D:\VM\WinXP\WinXPd2.vmdk"

3) In step 2 we extended “physical” disk for VM, now we have to expand disk at VM OS partition level as well. In Windows XP/2003 we can use diskpart command line tool for that (see second referenced document from above).
Start VM (Windows XP/2003), logon as someone with Adminisatrator rights and extend partition:

cmd> diskpart
diskpart> list volume
diskpart> select volume=n
diskpart> extend

In case you want to extend system disk then you’ll have to mount that disk with another VM and then extend the partition with diskpart.

IBM ServeRAID Manager Agent – memory leak

Facts:

  • server IBM x3950
  • Windows 2003 x64, SP2
  • IBM ServeRAID Manager 8.40

While working on a couple of Oracle servers running on IBM x3950, I noticed extremely large memory consumption of the RAIDSERV.EXE process that belongs to “IBM ServeRAID Manager Agent”. It’s a 32-bit process running inside WOW64. On one server 800MB was allocated to raidserv.exe and 1600MB on another. Immediately after service startup, 22MB memory allocation was observed, then slowly increasing. Can’t tell for sure how fast/slow memory leaking is progressing – I’ll know in a couple of days.