Illusory Follies Andrew Flanagan's Blog

7Jan/091

Git

git-logo_3I'm really excited about Git -- a newish revision control system. I've seen it growing in popularity over the last few years but hadn't used it until just recently.

Unlike Subversion which I've really enjoyed using, it's decentralized, meaning that each "local" copy is in fact a full repository with all changes. There are quite a few advantages with regards to merging and branching and some of the concepts seem to have been well-thought-out rather than simply inherited from earlier revision control system designs. It's written my Linus Torvalds -- Mr. Linux himself. There are still some issues with it and the biggest issue is that it's simply not as well supported yet with regards to tools. I hope that soon we'll see better support on Windows (a necessary evil) and some slicker/easier Gui front-ends.

For now, I'm considering moving over to this for personal use and maybe sneaking it in at work. If you haven't used it yet, I encourage you to check it out. Here's a transcript of a talk from Linus talking about Git, Subversion, and revision control systems in general and here's the Wikipedia page on Git. I think that it very much depends on your situation whether a decentralized or centralized repository is the way to go, but I think that often, Git will be a good solution.

Update: Here's a video of the talk.

27Sep/073

OpenVPN

Well in my drug-induced down time I've been fiddling with my Gentoo server some more... I added Wake-on-Lan support to the kernel so that I can power the system up from upstairs or across the country. It's nice because I don't tend to leave it on all the time and even when I'm home, it's a pain to hit the power button since I keep the system squirreled away in a cabinet.

In addition however, I also added OpenVPN support to the server. I punched a hole in the firewall and set up Ethernet bridging in order to give me full access to the entire network when I'm away from home. It works amazingly well. It wasn't quick to set up but it was kind of fun. Basically you create an Ethernet bridge between a "real" network adapter and the virtual OpenVPN adapter and assign that bridge the IP address of the old "real" network adapter. I like.

10Aug/072

Storage

So... Back on march 30th I posted an entry on my storage solution. I had built a computer and had added a basic RAID configuration to it:

I finally got my RAID solution in place. I went cheap and got two 500GB hard drives ($145 each) and a HighPoint RocketRAID 1740 RAID 0/1/5 4 channel SATA 3.0 GBps card ($110).

So... With this configuration I get 500GB of storage (430GB or so after formatting). This was great for a while. However, recently I realized I needed more. All of my personal "stuff" that's somewhat irreplaceable doesn't take up much room. Add my ripped CDs in and you get about 100GB. I have another 25-50GB of random things (disk images for linux installs, video rips (which I haven't in the past kept for very long so I was okay with not backing them up)). So I wasn't exactly out of room but I was using a fair bit. However, I also wanted to snag a relation's (who will remain unnamed) music collection. It's 499GB. That's 272 days worth of music if played continuously. We follow a strict rule to ensure compliance with copyright law: we don't tell anyone.

Whoops.

Anyway -- I needed more storage so I picked up some hard drives from Fry's online (why is their online store called "Outpost"? It makes no sense). They were cheap! $89 per 500GB drive. They came with free shipping and I shipped them to Virginia when I was there on travel to save on state sales tax. When I got back, I copied my existing data to a 500GB external drive, added the new drives, prayed a quick prayer that my system wouldn't overheat and started it up. I reconfigured the RAID array from a 2 x 500GB RAID 1 array to a 4 X 500GB RAID 5 array. This gives me 1.5TB (1.4 TB or so formatted). It's nice. I've loaded everything on there and since I have so much extra breathing room I've immediately started piling on stuff that I previously had kept on local hard drives. Here's my usage currently:

space.JPG

It's nice to have some room...