Friday, May 18, 2007

Caps and Tunes

Two great links today..
  1. Tom's hardware features an article on reviving your dead PC motherboard. I had a family member's motherboard die on me a few months back. I purchased a replacement for ~$50, which was ok. This would be a better route. In general I always purchase the cheapest mobo I can find, but I can imagine if you paid real money, a fix like this would be great.
  2. Even better is how this guy made a DIY Airport express from a linksys media/NAS wireless router. If I can find this router on the cheap I'll definitely give it a go. Let it be said that Airport Express is extremely small and elegant. I'm waiting for the price to drop to ~$50 usd, but I don't see that happening soon.

Friday, May 4, 2007

IOgear GPSU01 Print Server Setup Guide

Everywhere you look, people have serious difficulty getting it to work. Many people who post to forums decry that they purchased the unit, brought it home, failed to get it operational, exchanged the unit, brought it home again and failed. Upon the second failure they returned the GPSU01 for a refund or other product.

I recently purchased an IOGEAR GPSU01 USB print server on ebay, going in the face of wisdom, I knew better! Anyway I guess I did, so here are some quick pointers to get you up and running.

I have my GPSU01 acting as a print server for both a mac and PC. The attached printer is a Brother HL-1440. Everything seems to work great.

The problem->
The main question is how do you configure the print server? Well you need to know the IP address, right? And the default IP address of the GPSU01 isn't documented anywhere!! Further, the instructions indicate that 192.168.1.110 might be valid and it doesn't work! You also use 192.1.0.0/24 at home, and the last thing you want to do is change around your network! So unless you want to use a network scanner to find the IP address, read on...

In their wisdom, IOGEAR enabled non-IP, auto-discoverable protocols IPX/SPX (Netware) & Appletalk as the default protocols.

So this means two things:
  1. To use the print server you must have either Novell's netware or Appletalk installed and running on your computer.
  2. To configure the print server you must use Novell's netware.
Mac people->
I don't remember the specifics, but in the Networking control panel, you have to click on the physical transport layer selection (Ethernet or Airport or??) and then click the Appletalk tab, and enable it from there. There's not much Appletalk configuration. Then go to print center and install an Appletalk printer. I don't like that arrangement because I don't want a second protocol stack enabled just for printing. blech. What you need is a PC...

PC people->
Before I begin, if by chance you're like me, you removed obsolete protocols like IPX and NetBEUI from your network stack. Well, you have to reinstall IPX in 2007!!! Some novell exec is smiling :( So do that first and continue.

Download and install the GPSU01 application from iogear's website. Follow the instructions as they tell you how to Add a printer. After you create a new network port and click next, the Add port window appears with three tabs IPX, IP, NetBEUI. With the IPX tab selected, make the application search for the GPSU01. BINGO IT WORKS! Select the print server, and continue adding the printer.
When this process is done, run the PSAdmin application. Select the print server, get to properties, and go to the TCP/IP tab. And now you can configure it... cheers

HL-1440 Particulars->
I did a little reading on what postscript the GPSU01 supports, apparently only PCL3, which is pretty old technology, but fine for most home needs. So you should get by with installing a generic HP LaserJet driver. However, I found that if I install the included Brother HL-1440 drivers (included with OSX, and downloaded for XP), everything worked 100%.

Also, when installing the printers, use LPD, not IPP. I know the specs say the GPSU01 supports IPP, but I didn't go far enough to get it to work. LPD options worked great.

Friday, February 2, 2007

VWCDPIC

This is great.

These guys have assembled the code to access a VW/Audi stock head-unit's CD controls : the VW CD Pick. It's built around a PIC12F629/675 8-bit microcontroller. Even better is that you can program it from your PC's serial port so you don't need access to an EPROM programmer.

Here's the link to the firmware for interfacing your VW head unit with an ipod.

Monday, January 22, 2007

everything you wanted to know about cooling your computer case

not everything, but this website is excellent.
A chunk of theory, and a healthy splash of DIY fan-control circuits.
My computer's case is so hacked up. I made the mistake of getting one of those mini-towers for my ATX motherboard. So basically they are about 6" shorter than a normal mid-tower. What you loose is CPU heat sink clearance and space to have a rear exhaust fan.

Yes - the PSU sits right ON TOP of the CPU, so you can't utilize any taller heat sink. I cut a hole in the top of my case, and installed a fan there. Unfortunately the case is set up with a plastic "body" piece that covers the top steel side (where I installed an extra fan).

It's all a mess, but it's quietish.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Add Technorati Link to Blogger

Here's the way to add your technorati tools to blogger. You have to configure the technorati side first.


Technorati Side:
  1. Log in to Technorati
  2. Click your Account (aka the Signed in as: BLAH click BLAH)
  3. Click the Blogs tab
  4. Click Edit Settings
  5. Copy the code in the Widget Code box.

Blogger Side:
  1. Log into Blogger, you'll be at the Blogger Dashboard
  2. Click Layout for the blog you wish to configure.
  3. Click Add a Page Element in the Navigation Column
  4. Find HTML/Javascript page element and click Add to Blog
  5. Enter a Title like: Technorati Tools
  6. In the Content box, paste the code you coppied from the Blogger site
  7. Click Save Changes
  8. View blog.
Done.