LHS Show Notes #031

Contributors:

  • Last episode we talked about WSPR. Eddie Bennett, G3ZJO, wrote an article about running WSPR under Linux, and that article is available on the LHS website. He has several other blog pages, too.
  • Don, WS4E, wrote that he recently acquired an iPhone and was interested to see that there is a Ustream app for it, but the app only plays pre-approved streams. He wonders if the LHS and RF podcasts will be available on Ustream. Russ did contact them, and LHS is now available on the Ustream iPhone application.
  • We received a pingback from Ben, VK5JFK, to the article on the LHS website, Linux Mint 7 - Refreshing
  • Paul, KC9QYB, of teenradiojourney.com, writes about a problem he was having with a file server. They recently upgraded it to the latest version of Ubuntu server, on a separate partition. He wonders how he can recover the data from the other drives and partitions. Russ answers. Essentially:
    1. Identify the "old" drive device name. You can search through the results of the dmesg command to see which devices are detected at boot. Let's assume your old data is on drive /dev/hda1.
    2. Create a directory in the /mnt directory on your new drive (or partition) to serve as the mount point. We'll call it root:
      mkdir /mnt/root
    3. Mount the old drive:
      mount /dev/hda1 /mnt/root
    4. Now you can copy or move files from the old drive at /mnt/root to the new drive.
    5. Similarly, you can create other directories in /mnt for other partitions, such as /var, /usr, /home, or whatever you might need.
  • A Twitter mention from timls about listening to the podcast.

Announcements:

  • We received a donation from Bill, NF9D, to help send Linux in the Ham Shack to the Dayton Hamvention in 2010. Thanks, Bill!

Links and Notes:

  • Interview with David Lane, KG4GIY, and Shawn Powers of Linux Journal. Shawn is the Associate Editor and David is a contributing author, blogger, member of the Reader Advisory Board, and amateur radio operator. The January, 2010 issue of Linux Journal is devoted to amateur radio topics.
  • The very first issue of Linux Journal is available online, and also contained an article about ham radio.
  • David's blog post about ereaders.
  • David is also the Emergency Coordinator and RACES officer for Prince William Cty, VA. David discusses the use of Linux in emergency communications.
  • Mentioned in the chat room: David Freese, W1HKJ, the author of fldigi, also has NBEMS, Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System, for Linux.
  • The group discusses how packet radio networks operate.
  • This leads to a discussion of what, if any, types of encryption are allowed in amateur radio transmissions.
  • Linux Journal has their "virtual ham shack" at https://www.linuxjournal.com/ham/, which includes a forum. David has recently started a thread there about software-defined radios.
  • The panel discusses what appears to be an increase in ham radio software for the Linux community.
  • Russ asks the panel their opinion about the new evil empire, Google, and specifically Google Wave and Google Voice.
  • What about Google DNS? https://code.google.com/speed/public-dns/ (The panel mentions "Cricket's book", which is DNS and BIND, by Paul Albitz and Cricket Liu, published by O'Reilly.)
  • With Oracle's purchase of Sun, what will happen to MySQL?
  • Look for David at the Linux Journal chatroom on freenode IRC, in the #linuxjournal channel.
  • Check out the Linux Journal store, too.

Music:

  • "Let's Get It Started" by Oh No Not Stereo from the album "003"
  • "Miss America" by Beyond 7 from the album "Revelations Per Minute"

LHS Episode #031: Linux Journal Invasion

Linux in the HAM Shack has arrived in 2010! It's hard to believe that 2009 is over already. We've have so much fun putting together the podcast for everyone, the time has literally flown by. Soon it will be time for the snow to melt, the world to turn green once again, and for LHS to travel to Dayton, OH for the 2010 Hamvention in May. We're so ready we can almost taste it.

In this episode, we had the honor of interviewing two prominent figures from Linux Journal magazine. David Lane, KG4GIY, is the magazine's eminent blogger and ham radio advocate. He is a large part of the reason the January 2010 issue of LJ is all about amateur radio. Shawn Powers is the magazine's associate editor, which gives him the dubious honor of being a guest on our show. He's the go-to guy when the editor, publisher and just about everyone else needs something done. We have to say we were greatly honored to have the LJ folks join us, and we sure hope we haven't scared them off so they'll come back and talk with us in the future.

Hope everyone is having a fantastic 2010 so far, and thanks for downloading LHS in the new year. And if you have a couple of dollars leftover from holiday binging, please drop us a donation as the deadline for acquiring a booth in Dayton is coming up fast. And remember, we appreciate our listeners, each and every one. Thank you!

73 de Russ and Richard

LHS Show Notes #030

Contributors:

  • Walter, WN3LIF, writes to express his appreciation for the podcast. He has successfully interfaced his FT-450 to his Linux Mint system.
  • Terry, KV6M, alerted Richard to a link spam entry in the forums at blacksparrowmedia.com.
  • Bob, VE3SRE, recently found the podcast, and has been a user of GNU/Linux for many years. He's found a good contest logging program, but neglected to mention which one. Let us know, Bob!
  • Paul, KC9QYB, of teenradiojourney.com, Kent, VE4KEH, and Bill, KA9WKA, join the roundtable discussion this episode.

Announcements:

  • Check out Russ on Hacker Public Radio! In episode 0494, Klaatu interviews Russ at Ohio Linux Fest.
  • Another generous donation came from Jim, W9GNG. Thanks very much, Jim! LHS is well on the way to their goal for sending Richard and Russ to the Dayton Hamvention 2010! If you'd like to donate, click on the Donate button at the Linux in the Ham Shack website.

Links and Notes:

  • The ARRL has an article about Senate Bill 1755 being passed in the Senate and now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration. A roundtable discussion ensues.
  • Kent, VE4KEH, joins the roundtable to discuss WSPR (Weak Signal Propagation Reporter), written by Joe Taylor, K1JT. See also the WSPRnet page for recent observations.
    • When you install the .deb package, it may not create a desktop icon. The program installs, by default, into the /WSPR directory. So, you may need to run it by doing the following in a terminal window:
      		$ cd /WSPR
      		$ ./wspr
      
    • Of course, you'll also need a soundcard interface to your radio. Once running, you should go to the Setup -> Station parameters menu option and enter your callsign, grid square, transmit power, and set your audio device and rig control preferences.
    • It can even be used on the experimental 600m band, if you have a license to operate there. On July 28, 2009, the FCC granted the ARRL a modified license for WD2XSH. This modified license allows the experiment to operate with 45 stations across the continental USA, Alaska, and Hawaii. So, unless you're one of the stations specifically authorized to operate on 600m, you should only provide reception reports, and not transmit on that band.
    • One final note about WSPR: you must have your computer clock set very accurately. The easiest way is to set up an NTP client on your computer to synchronize your computer clock to one of the network time protocol servers. Here is an article on setting up a Ubuntu client, which should also work for Linux Mint. Or...
    • If you RIGHT CLICK on your desktop clock and select "set date / time", there may be an option to automatically set the time. You can select the ntp.ubuntu.com server so you don't overload the public servers.
  • Paul recently built a Pixie II QRP CW transceiver kit.
  • Bill Meara, M0HBr/CU2JL/N2CQR, of the SolderSmoke podcast is also a fan and practitioner of WSPR.
  • Bill, KB3CVA, has a telnet BBS online at https://phantombbs.net.
  • Russ discusses a gizmodo article about Microsoft patenting the sudo command. It's not likely that the patent is enforceable. Don't Panic. 🙂 Articles on ars technica and Information Week have a more realistic slant on the issue.
  • Tip: to eliminate having to enter your password each time you use the sudo command:
    • First, edit the /etc/sudoers file using the visudo utility. It is considered insecure to tweak the /etc/sudoers file manually.
    • 		$ sudo visudo /etc/sudoers
      
    • Uncomment this line by removing the # character:
      		# %sudo ALL=NOPASSWD: ALL
      
    • So it now looks like this:
      		%sudo ALL=NOPASSWD: ALL
      

      and save the file.

    • Finally, add your user name to the sudo group. For example, to add user russ to the sudo group:
      		sudo usermod -a -G sudo russ
      
    • Log out and in, and enjoy sudo without the password prompts.
    • Of course, if you just want to avoid repeatedly typing your password for a session, you can issue the command:
      		sudo bash -
      

      which will give you a bash terminal session as root, and you can then issue several commands as root without the need for typing sudo at all.

  • Debate in the chat room about cell phones and emergency communications. Richard talks about the cell phone problems during hurricane Katrina. Most cell phone systems are designed to support about 20% of their subscribers at any given time. When an emergency occurs, the cell phone networks are quickly overloaded.

Music: