An Unknown Indian

Thoughts of a FOSS enthusiast

Archive for December, 2006

The hanging of Mr.Saddam

Posted by Balachandran on December 31, 2006

Hello folks, The last days of this great year end with the hanging of the former iraqi president Mr. Saddam Hussein. He was hanged for his crimes against humanity during his iron regime of over two and half decades. He is accused of genocide against kurds and shias. But still, the execution has resulted in widespread protests throughout the world, rightly.

In the present day, civilised world, a death sentence seems barbaric. Are we still in the stone age and iron age when it comes to law??? And more over in the present case of Mr.Saddam, it is well known that the legal proceeding were highly flawed. The juries appointed for this case were never neutral. They were supporters of the Bush Government. Also, the world knows how the US people brutally murdered three of the former counsel associated with this case.

True that Mr.Saddam commited heienous crimes during his regeime. But, what Bush did against him is more cruel and bloody. In the first case, the US violated all UN norms by unilaterally decaring war on Iraq without the approval of the UN. It killed numerous civilians in this war. Many more POW were tortured in the  prisons of Guantanamo Bay. It too had drw\awn widespread criticism from across the globe from many human rights activists.

Another important point is that the present US backed iraqi governments leader declared that Mr.Saddam would be hanged before the new year even before the verdict came out. So doesn’t that mean that everything was preplaned and the authorities had just conducted the trials for formalities??? Much needs to be answered as the new year dawns….. Let us hope it turns out to be good for all…..

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YAOS meeting

Posted by Balachandran on December 20, 2006

Hello folks, The next meeting of yaos was conducted yesterday as scheduled at A-16 hall. The meeting started at 3:45 . There was a considerably good strength. We started with discussing about the filesystems.Agalya and Krithika (My friends) spoke on UFS and ZFS respectively. Then there was a general discussion about the file systems.

Then we spoke about Bochs emulator and configuring it. Unfortunately none of us knew how to copnfigure it to point to a kernel image. It was decided that it would be learnt soon. There was also a short discussion on assemblers like NASM and AS. NASM is highly portable and AS has a very good compatibility with gcc.

Finally, It was decided that we will read about file systems throughly, i.e. from the basics to the implementational level. The next meeting would be held on 22/12/2006 , Friday and will focus mainly on file systems.

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Neurofibromatosis-post #2

Posted by Balachandran on December 16, 2006

       Hello folks, So this will be my second post on neurofobromatosis(NF) in a series of posts that I will be posting regarding this rare genetically acquired disease. In this post, we will concentrate mainly on the causes of NF. I had given a noverview of this disease in my previous post in this topic, Neurofibromatosis-post #1.

The genes in the human body are like a programmed stuff in that thy take care that all the parts of the body area proper and they work properly. If the gene has a misprint then, the part of the body controlled by that particular gene will be deective, the degree of which varies. So, NF is one such disorder caused by a misprint in the human gene.

So, usually a child with NF has often been passed a misprinted gene from either of its parents. This gene might have been dormant in the child’s parent but could have been active in the child resulting in NF. But there are also cases where the misprint occurs for the first time in the child it self fue to a misprinted gene in the formation ususlly because of ablormal differentiation and migration of neural cells during the early stages of embryogenesis. NF obtained by passing of misprinted gene from parents is called autosomal dominant inheritance.

Both NF-1 and NF-2 are caused by the above stated autosomal dominant  inheritance.But are caused by gene misprints in different chromosomes. NF-1 is normally caused by a misprint in chromosome 17 and is more commo. NF-2 is less common and is caused by a defective gene in chromosome 22. Both these genes are inherited in a dominant fashion, i.e. even one deective gene can bring the disease.

Among these 2 types, NF-2 is not easily observable externally and hence is not known to others. It is hence called “central neurofibromatosis”. But this is rarer of the two types and only less info is availble regarding this type.

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Is the cold war back?

Posted by Balachandran on December 9, 2006

       Now that most part of the world would have heard the news of the cold-blooded murder of  Alexander Litvinenko, a former lieutenant-colonel with Russia’s FSB Security Services and a strong, long time critic of Vladimir Putin regeime, we have a grave question to be answered…. Is the cold war back? We have reasons to believe so…. We now see Russia and Britain trading charges against each other on one side and the famous scotland yard’s statement that it was definitely a murder on the other side……

With the truth yet to come out, one thing is for sure– the murder had been a well planned one. The use of higly toxic, radioactive and fatal polonium-210 proves that. The people behind this nasty event had wanted that he should be dead at all costs….. But why?

It is generally known that in Putin’s regeime, all those who have opposed him have been silenced soon. And that Alexander Litvinenko was a long time critic is well known. This adds to the suspicions on Russia’s side. And the fact that Litvinenko met two of his former friends from FSB on the day he was poisoned makes it more serious…..Let us wait and see the results to find out the inhuman people behind this unprecedented murder…….

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FOSS-2007@tce

Posted by Balachandran on December 5, 2006

        Thiagarajar College of Engg will be organising a week long seminar on FOSS tools in January 2007 in its campus. The seminar is scheduled from 8-1-2007 to 13-1-2007. The specaility of the program is that it will be conducted by experts in the field from various industries and the GNU field. People among the resource persons are Mr.Amalan Joe Steeve, Mr. Ananth Shrinivas, Mr. Senthil Kumaran, Mr.Shakti Kannan, Mr.Bharathi Subramanian, and Mr.Nagappan.

The various sessions of the week long seminar/workshop include

  • Installation tools
  • System configuration tools
  • Server configuration tools
  • Networking tools
  • Application development tools
  • Desktop tools
  • Database tools
  • Web-programming tools
  • Content management tools

and the list goes on…And all the sessions will have a pratical hands on session for all these. The venue of the event will be the conference of the Dept of Computer Science in Thiagarajar College of Engg.Also accomodation is provide on request… For more details and for registering please loook into the site http://tce.edu/~foss2007/

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Debian sarge (64-bit) installation

Posted by Balachandran on December 5, 2006

        Hey folks, we are really excited today, as we were for the first time allowed to something on the costly servers :-). We (Balachandran, Sai, Venkatapathy) installed the 64-bit debian sarge in the itanium server, or the SMP. This work must havebeen completed long back, but due to some problems with the hyperterminal present there, we were unable to do it.Now atlast we have done it.

But even today, with a guy from HP present, the installation was not as smooth as we had expected. We got stuck up for a long time with the partition… yes even thought all three of us have enough experience installing debian on lots of systems, we had that problem 😦 Then we tried to use the LVM…. but that did not help…

We were stuck up because we saw a nwe type of partition there.. called the EFI boot. Now I understand that it is an Extensible Firmwire Interface Boot….Then after instructions from our staff we decided to erase the entire disk and install Debain. The server already had RHEL running on it.But we formated it and now the server has only a 64-bit Debian sarge running on it.

Though we spent nearly 2 hrs for that, we area really glad and happy that we learnt something new today about EFI and stuff. We are also glad to have done the first 64-bit debian installation in the college, that too in a costly itanium server, which will be our DataBase server.

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Neurofibromatosis-post #1

Posted by Balachandran on December 4, 2006

        Hello folks, This is one topic that I had been thinking of posting here for a long time. But some how or the or the other it didn’t happen… But, finally today, i have made the first of a series of posts on Neurofibromatosis.

Neurofibromatosis or NF is a genetic disorder that occurs hereditaril, often carried after three or four generations. It is still in research stage. This disorder, as the name suggests, is realted both with the skin and the nerves. Symptoms include spots on the skin thorough the body often resulting in inflamation which are usually benign.

NF is classified in to two types, called NF1 and NF2 . Often, NF is extremely serious and may be fatal. There are presently lots of research work going on in this field. Some major effect of NF include fits, loss of memory, depression, loss of hearing and/or vision, numbness in body etc.

I am lucky enough, by GOD’s grace to have a mild case of this disorder. This is non-communicable and does not spread easily. Also, even though it spreads hereditarily, it has not been proven yet that it will be affecting the offspring with 100% chance, but that is often the case.

Will update with more info soon….

Posted in Medicine | 3 Comments »

iptables….

Posted by Balachandran on December 4, 2006

        Hey folks… I got really excited today. I just learnt how to use the iptables command for various purposes :). I learnt how to use the command to set up new rules, append to existing rules, drop rules…etc. The site from which I learnt them was a good. the link is http://www.netfilter.org/documentation/HOWTO .

The commands that i tried were

#iptables -A INPUT -s <some I P> -p <some protocol> -j DROP

for blocking all packets of the corresponding protocol from that given IP. The -A command is used to add rule ro an existing ipchain.For droping an existing chain, the option is -D. For example, to drop packets of a ping command(icmp protocol) from the loclhost, the command will be

#iptables -A INPUT -s 127.0.0.1 -p icmp -j DROP

To undo the same, that is to remove that iptbales rule, what we simply need to do is just repeat the same command with the -A replaced by -D. Another thing I tried was to block all internet traffic to the system in which I am logged in. This is easily done with some thinking… this is what I did. I blocked all tcp packets from the main proxy.The command for doing it is.

#iptables -A INPUT -s 10.0.0.2 -p tcp -j DROP

Here, all tcp packets arriving from 10.0.0.2,the proxy to this system are dropped.Since web traffic is also a tcp based traffic, it also gets blocked…

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