Saturday, January 30, 2010

Blackberry Service

Ever use a Blackberry for you PDA? If so you may know the crazy way you have to go about setting up an email account on the device. For ATT customers you need to navigate to this website:
Blackberry Internet Service
You will need to create an account and then register your PDA with the service.

If you ever lose you account information, like I did, the forgot password or pin reset part of their website does not work. You can enter whatever you like and it will tell you a text has been sent to you Blackberry. You will need to click the “Require Assistance” link just to find the following phone number you will need to call.

I ended up spending 35 minutes on hold and another 10 minutes talking to a serviced representative to get my account reset so I could add another email account to my Blackberry.

Also, just for your knowledge, you can have 10 email accounts on you Blackberry. So if you are weird like I am you can load up your Gmail, Yahoo, Hot Mail and whatever email account you may have onto your PDA.

Good luck and don’t forget you account information, otherwise be prepared to hang onto to hold for awhile.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

VNC Access on Ubuntu or Redhat

I typically use shell access on all my linux servers but sometimes I need to load X and use GNOME or KDE in either Ubuntu or Redhat/Fedora/Cent OS. The problem is  that the vncserver file resides in different places depending upon the distribution you are using. I like to modify the vncserver file to increase the resolution of the virtual server to match my 20” monitor.


edit the global variable to tweak the vncserver resolution.
$geometry = "1280x1024";

Redhat/Fedora/Cent OS:

Different variables to tweak how the vncserver daemon runs. Tweak the variable below to adjust the resolution.
VNCSERVERARGS[2]="-geometry 1280x1024"

Read the comments at the beginning of each distributions vncserver file for other settings and tweaks.

Want KDE or GNOME to load when your virtual terminal loads. Then you need to edit the .xstartup file for the user that the vncserver will run as.
For instance if you login to your linux box with “Fred” then you need to go to edit the xstartup file in the .vnc folder in your home directory. I like the joe editor but vi works also.

vi /home/fred/.vnc/xstartup

make sure this is at the end of the file for GNOME
exec gnome-session &

for KDE use the following
startkde &

If you see
twm &
you will need to either remove it or comment it out.
#twm &


Thursday, January 21, 2010


I ran across FreeNAS in a Google search a couple of days ago and decided to give it a try on an old Dell Precision workstation 410. I booted off of the live CD I created from the ISO file I downloaded from SourceForge. I am need to move an aging FTP Server and thought that Freenas might do the trick. Install went fine and I was able to use the web gui to do further configuration of the Freebsd v7.1 OS. I used three additional drives to create a ZFS single parity raid drive. The old FTP server I use is running VSFTPD and FreeNAS uses ProFTPD by default. It took some command line hacking to find the proftpd.conf and modify my LDAP based accounts to get ProFTPD to allow the accounts access. After a quick rsync of data from the old server to the new FreeNAS, I am ready to put it thru the test. I will update as I can to verify performance and other issues that might arise.