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Showing posts from 2009

Website updated

While updating some contents in my site -, I thought of changing the looks as well. After spending almost a day fiddling with the stylesheet I couldn't come up with a design that pleased me. Frustrated, I came up with the best solution - dump all stylesheet and images. Pure text in pure html, nothing else!

(UPDATE: Finally added a css once again! - 21/12/09 )

Wikileaks blocked by BSNL - India follows China in censorship

At last it seems like India is following China's footsteps in restricting her citizens' access to the Internet. - a well known site that "publishes anonymous submissions and leaks of sensitive governmental, corporate, organizational, or religious documents, while attempting to preserve the anonymity and untraceability of its contributors" (description from wikipedia entry ) has been apparently blocked by the Sarkari ISP- BSNL. Tonight, while trying to lookup a "confidential" (alas! no longer confidential) working paper (wikileaks link) about India's proposed "Multipurpose National Identity Card" (link), I was unable to reach from my BSNL Broadband connection directly, although the site could be opened through most public proxy servers. Just to verify that it is indeed the Sarkari BSNL who is trying to act smart, I connected through Airtel Mobile Office EDGE connection and I could easily view the page. What a shame f…

My new Nokia 5800 Xpressmusic

Recently I bought a Nokia 5800 Xpressmusic Smartphone to replace my aging Nokia 6600. 5800 is Nokia's first device based on the S60 5th Edition platform, running Symbian OS v9.4 on a 434MHz ARM11 CPU. Notable features include large(3.2inch 640x360) resistive touchscreen with tactile feedback, HSDPA(3.5G), 802.11b/g WLAN support, GPS (with optional AGPS), accelerometer, stereo FM radio with RDS, 3.2Mpixel camera with Carl Zeiss Optics, blah blah... the list is quite long. For a complete list of specifications see the link to the device specs page, there is no point in copy-pasting the list here.

After unpacking I plugged in an Airtel 2G SIM and the 8GB MicroSD that came with the device. Unfortunately the state owned BSNL is the only mobile service provider in India providing 3G connectivity. Though BSNL has excellent 2G coverage all over the country, their 3G coverage is limited only to few cities. Other operators are yet to receive licenses to roll out 3G networks. So for the time…

Making inactve USB Hard Disk spin down automatically in Linux.

I have a 400GB Seagate IDE HDD connected to Mars, our hostel's file-server using an USB enclosure. The USB enclosure is a cheap "Made in China" product. Consequently it has some special "features". One such notable "feature" is that the disk is kept spinning by the controller even if there has been no disk I/O for a long time. I have three other USB disks connected to the same machine, a 1TB Seagate FreeAgent Desk External Drive, a 500GB Maxtor Basics External Drive and a 2.5" 60GB Fujitsu SATA Disk inside a Transcend USB enclosure. All of these spin down themselves if there has been no I/O for sometime. Keeping the hard disk spinning unnecessarily for ever, not only wastes power but also overheats the drive, thereby reducing its life.
I tried noflushd, which is supposed to force idle hard disks to spin down, but found it to be of no help. USB enclosure generally work by performing an SCSI emulation over USB. sdparm is an utility which can be used…

IISERK Haringhata Campus

Making a post after quite a long time. In the meantime a lot of things have changed here. This is my first post after moving to the Haringhata Campus. From the hustle and bustle of Kolkata we were suddenly "teleported" to the calm and serene atmosphere of Haringhata, quite a bit jump it was.
The location didn't quite disappoint me, though many "mall hoppers" and a few "privileged ones" (their homes are in Kolkata) who earlier could slip into the comfort of their homes every weekend easily were unhappy, it has become a bit more difficult for them to do so now. However one thing that I really miss is the 2Mbits connection. There is no broadband connection yet in the hostel, and currently we are trying hard to manage using a 17KBytes Wireless Dialup connection over CDMA. There is little chance of getting any high speed connection in this remote location. The administrative building does have a decent leased line, but it is at a few minutes of walking dist…

Adventures with IPv6

I spent the past couple of days, tinkering with an old Linux box, trying to set up a fully functional IPv6 network, complete with an IPv6 webserver, nameserver, mailserver, network router and firewall.
The job is partly done.
The nameserver, webserver, network router and firewall are working quite well.
The website can be accessed here you have IPv6 connectivity). It runs on a rickety PIII running Ubuntu 8.04.1 and connected to my friend's home ADSL connection. Power failure are quite a common affair in our region (in almost the whole country, to be honest!) and there is no power backup for the server, so if it appears to be down, kindly check back sometime later.
The nameserver manages the DNS records for the subdomain
I hope to get the mailserver up and running quite soon.
I'll also come up with a detailed documentation on how I got the things running, sometime in the near future.
Anyway for this half-crappy I…