Categories
Apple Misc

MagSafe car adapter

As you probably know, the MagSafe adapter is a great invention. Someone trips over your power cord, and the connector pops off.

And if you think “well, cool, but won’t happen, a normal connector won’t break your notebook” you’re very wrong.

A few months ago, at school, during courses, someone tripped over my Powerbook’s power cord, and pulled everything off the table. This resulted in complete data loss + broken adapter + banana-looking case; 926 EUR repairing costs (Yes, this is when I dediced the get myself a Macbook (Pro), and the good thing was that Leopard was about to be released).

And today, at school again, MagSafe proved itself for the first real time. Someone again tripped over my power cord, and pop, all that fell on the ground was the power cable.

I must honestly say, the power infrastructure at school is terrible, we have tons of cables going to one power hub, and I haven’t been the first victim to such brutal hardware murder.

Anyway, the big downside of the MagSafe adapter, is the fact it’s patented… Apple has only released (some lame) plane adapter (it won’t even charge your Macbook)… Nothing for in the car.

The only alternative I’ve found on the web, was this. But look at the prices… Ridiculous!

So I’ve been searching on eBay for some alternative, I’ve seen some home-made adapters, but nothing I really trusted.

Because I still had my old Kensington Powerbook-car-charger, I tried to find some connector that would fit. No luck on the official pages.

This is when I came across weaudio. They were selling Kensington car adapters, with a home-made MagSafe switch. (Basicly, one ends fits in your Kensington adapter, the other end is what is left of an old MagSafe power cable.)

I’ve mailed the man, if it would be possible to sell just the MagSafe cable + Kensington-to-MagSafe switch; and guess what!

This morning, after a small week of patiently waiting for my item to arrive, i finally have it.

I’ve tested it, and so far my battery hasn’t blown up, it gets the juice from my car, and it even charges (although it’s only 70W)! This all for 30$ (including shipping costs from Hong Kong).

Eat that, Apple! 😉

Here are some pictures:

MagSafe car adapter (1)MagSafe car adapter (2)MagSafe car adapter (3)MagSafe car adapter (4)MagSafe car adapter (5)

Categories
Apple Linux VM

Parallels + Ubuntu

I finally got a reply from the Parallels support team. After using the alternate Parallels installer it finally works again! Even after rebooting Mac! joy

Before trying to run Vista/Bootcamp through Parallels again, I’m waiting till the end of my exams (Thursday). Don’t want to blow up my Windows install again when I’m in desperate need of it. 😉

As usual with Parallels, creating/installing a new OS isn’t easy. Wether it crashes or you get a bunch of errors, you’re always up for a day full of fun!

Ubuntu on Parallels (1)

Here is how I managed to install Ubuntu on Parallels:

  • First of all, make sure you’re running the latest version of Parallels, especially if you’re using Leopard.
  • Step 2, download the alternate Ubuntu installer. If you do not use the alternate installer, you’ll end up with ‘Display server errors’ before being able to install Ubuntu. You can download Ubuntu here. Select the approriate version (probably Desktop, latest version), and check “Check here if you need the alternate desktop CD. This CD does not include the Live CD, instead it uses a text-based installer“.
  • Step 3, create a new virtual machine, with OS Linux/Ubuntu.

Parallels: Create a VMParallels: Create a VM (2)

  • And follow the steps. I’ve added some more screenshots below. You can leave everything by default, that’s as you wish.

Parallels: Create a VM (3)Parallels: Create a VM (4)Parallels: Create a VM (5)Parallels: Create a VM (6)Parallels: Create a VM (7)Parallels: Create a VM (8)

  • As CD-drive, select the Ubuntu (alternate) installer .iso-file.

Parallels: Create a VM (9)

  • Click Finish and Start — the Ubuntu installer will boot.
  • You’ll end up in Ubuntu’s welcome screen. Select your keyboard layout (hit F3) and select (text) install
  • Here too, follow the steps on the screen. It will ask for your language, country, and will propose a manual or automatic disk partition. I’ve selected automatic — it creates a big ext3 root partition, and a swap partition.
    The installer then asks if you agree with the partition table. Select Yes or No. (I’ve selected No – changed my root partition from ext3 to reiserfs, as I’m a big reiserfs fan.) When selecting Yes — the table will be created and Ubuntu will start installing.
  • After it’s installed, Ubuntu will reboot. This is where you’ll get your first error; ACPI: Unable to locate RSDP. This is a known error; you can safey ignore it.
  • Ubuntu will continue to boot, and then pop up this error: The display server has been shut down about 6 times in the last 90 seconds, and will freeze. To fix this error, shut down and restart (or reset) the VM, and hit the ESC-key. Grub’s bootloader menu will pop up if everything is right.
  • Select the 2nd option (recovery). Ubuntu will boot up in text-mode-only and you should be logged in as root (if you’re not, add ‘sudo’ in front of the commands below).
  • In Parallels, click (on top of your screen) “Actions” -> “Install Parallels Tools…” and type in following commands in the shell:
    • mount /media/cdrom
    • cd /media/cdrom
    • ./parallels-tools.run
    • reboot
  • After Ubuntu has rebooted (in normal mode), you shouldn’t receive any more errors, and you can enjoy Ubuntu on your mac!

Ubuntu on Parallels (2)

Categories
www

User-Agent ……/1.0

While checking the logs of one of my websites I noticed something rather weird.

Some person (65.210.123.237) with User-Agent/browser “Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows NT; ……/1.0 )” was downloading _all_ files from my website. Totally ignoring robots.txt and requesting pages without providing a referral.

This seemed quite odd and didn’t seem to be a decent/real search robot. It kept requesting files every 3-4 seconds for about one hour. Decent search bots try to spread the load over a few minutes, and wouldn’t request about 1000 files (1.6 Gb) at once.

After some Googling I noticed I wasn’t the first person wondering what it was. And as it seems, no one had a clear answer who this bot is, or what it purpose is.

So, well, I banned it.

Categories
Games Windows

CoD4

I recently got my hands on Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.

I must honestly say I really enjoyed the singleplayer. Great action, nice graphics, damn exciting maps, cool effects, nice movies, cool story, …

The only big downside was how short it was. After not even 2 days (so, around 4-5 hours of gaming) I completed it. I was just getting warmed up, finally mastered all controls, felt a small addiction coming up, when suddenly I saw the credits flashing over my screen… That day, will be remembered as a sad day. 🙁

Can’t wait for an expansion or followup!

Categories
Misc

That ’70s Show

From the (very) few things I watch on TV, I believe it’s That ’70s Show I enjoy most. It’s one of the only (comedy) shows I can just keep watching to. Yes, 24 and Lost aren’t too bad either (and, well, it’s not really comedy, is it?), but the last seasons have been going downwards and all tension is gone. That ’70s Show is different and hasn’t really changed over the years, it still makes me grin for about 25 minutes each day I manage to watch it.

Anyhow, here’s a screen from yesterday’s episode that really made me laugh.

That ’70s Show

As Eric is going away to Africa, Donna wanted to give him a special good-bye. She dressed completely as Princess Leia in Star Wars. But all Eric could think of, was to hug and touch Donna’s hair. 😀