Thanks for all your profound, inspiring and helpful inventions Steve. You’ve made an admirable mark on the world.
When it was but a closet
The Initial Setup
Shortly after moving in to my house, I opted to use a room for my Geekery (formerly known as “Nerdery”).. I dedicated circuit for power installed to make this closet remotely suitable to set up my hacky server “rack” (AKA Ikea Shelf) in.
Update (Apr 26)
After several months I couldn’t stand the sub-organization of it all. I wanted to be able to close the closet door (which had cables coming out of it) and I felt I needed some substantial air-flow through the space. Thus the “Datacentre Project” was born.
Like any good geek, I opted to also use the project to explore some other things. You know, n-birds with 1 stone. So by incarnating the Datacentre, I indirectly explored Google Sites, Picasa and Elementary Woodworking.
It took me of the order of about 40 hours to complete the whole thing from start to finish. Much time was spent planning, measuring and driving back to the hardware store for some small thing(s) I needed more of.
As I said, I used the project to also explore Google Sites. Thus, I made a kind of journal with detailed notes & photos here.
On the Layout
The layout I ultimately built out was done so to enable me ideally easy access to the innards of all machines in the space. I can (tightly) negotiate my body between the machines and switch things up without having to move anything (that’s epic). I have a pair of cables I can attach to any of the machines (poor-man’s KVM) so I can get at their consoles if I’m having remote problems. I’m considering making a narrow set of drawers that can be rolled in and out of the center cavity. I’d put cables and things in those. The only other thing the space could probably use, is more cowbell!
In hind sight the whole project took me far longer than I expected. Like in many other areas so much time went to in planning (which ended up being a highly iterative process as I’d think of new things as I’d be about to implement a previous idea). I must add, I don’t really like the LEDs, except they ended up being functional. Ideally they’d be white or a whitish-yellow. But that wasn’t an option.
While, yesterday was Ubuntu 9.04 day! With the latest official release of Ubuntu Linux, I decided to put one foot in the water and give upgrading my mac pro from 8.10 a whirl. The process went fairly perfectly with one major flaw. Upon rebooting my upgraded system, my video driver for xorg was no longer functioning properly. The solution was to remotely login through ssh, download & install the latest driver (from here) and then reboot again. After that I was greeted with the beautiful new Ubuntu 9.04 login screen and the upgrade was nearly..
I did go on to find that flash wasn’t working for me properly anymore. I found an interesting post that offered some good suggestions here. Though I found following the preferred suggestion didn’t exactly work out for me. All I did was remove the nonfree flash package and then reinstalled the “flashplugin-installer” package.
I posted pretty much the same comments as above regarding the video issue, with a little more detail on the Ubuntu Forum.
My flash experience is reposted here, but whatever, cause I just said it all over again in this post.
So I’ve been dragging my feet, trying to really wrap my brains around how nMOS, pMOS and the ever awesome n&p party called CMOS really get along, when I came across THIS freaking awesome page that really provided the illustration for how these things work that I’ve been looking for! The page that hosts this demonstration page I’m talking about is for some university in Hamburg, so I’m really thankful their page was written in English.
Anyone out there taking a course involving CMOS logic should really test/augment their understanding by taking a run through this page. It’s so freakin helpful!