Reaching out to others! Free & Open Source Software, Kannada, L10n, L18n Data Science, Cloud Computing & more…

Updating DELL Server firmware on Redhat based Linux Servers

It has become quite simple to upgrade the Servers firmwares if you’re running Linux on them.

Find the repos from Linux portal of Dell.
# set up repos
wget -q -O – | bash
wget -q -O – | bash

Install the firmware tools

yum -y install firmware-addon-dell

And here you go. Update BIOS updates/firmwares easily.

# install BIOS update
yum -y install $(bootstrap_firmware)

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Workshop on the standardization of Kannada Computing Terminology

A two day workshop on the of Computing Terminologies has been organized on January 28-29, 2012 at: Center for Internet and Society, with the help of CIS and (.net), under the (Frequently Used Entries for Localization) project. The workshop aims at the community review and standardization of frequently encountered computing terminologies in Kannada. Also, this workshop is first of its kind wherein discussion amongst Kannada linguists, translators, journalists, writers and users would take place and a consensus would reach upon the final translation of computing terminologies in Kannada. Kannada Evaluation meet mainly aims at solving the problem of inconsistency and lack of standardization in software translations.

FUEL tries to provide a standardized and consistent computer interface for users. FUEL Kannada Evaluation meet will be a concrete move towards the aforementioned problem and after the meet, FUEL will come with the standard translation of entries in Kannada language for the first time that are frequently being used by a normal user. This is a community project initiated by Red Hat. We invite linguists, translators, and users to participate who are serious to the cause of localization of computer in Kannada language.

Website: and

Venue: Center for Internet and Society
194, 2nd C Cross, Domlur II Stage,
Domlur, Bengaluru,
+91 80 4092 6283 ‎ ·

Start Time: 9.30 AM

Contact: Shankar Prasad +91-9967064285; Omshivaprakash +91-9902026518

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Adaptec RAID Monitoring via Nagios

Monitoring servers with RAID controllers is made easy through and other monitoring systems. Today its quite easy to get an app installed on your mobile and configure it to display critical errors from to quickly act on. When you’re an in-charge of Infrastructure, monitoring RAID becomes very very critical.  While digging around simple ways to monitor cards, a tiny little piece of script found on exchange – by Anchor Systems.

This script works with the Storage Manager – arcconf installed to manage RAID Cards.

Here is an excerpt from Nagios Exchange on check-aacraid script configuration for your quick reference :-

Check the health of an Adaptec raid controller using /usr/StorMan/arcconf Checks the following: Logical device status, Controller status, Failed & Degraded drives. If the battery is present: Charging status, Est of charge time left, Charge left %. And removes the log file “UcliEvt.log” that is dropped into the CWD when /usr/StorMan/arcconf is run.
Check the health of an Adaptec raid controller using /usr/StorMan/arcconf

Checks the following:
Logical device status
Controller status
Failed & Degraded drives

If battery present:
Charging status
Est of charge time left
Charge left %

And removes the log file “UcliEvt.log” that is dropped into the CWD when /usr/StorMan/arcconf is run.

Add this to your “/etc/sudoers” file using visudo
"nagios ALL=(root) NOPASSWD: /usr/StorMan/arcconf GETCONFIG 1 *"

## On RHEL & possibly others ##
Disable “Defaults requiretty” in /etc/sudoers otherwise the command will not run via NRPE.

Add this to your checkcommands.cfg

define command {
command_name check_aacraid
command_line $USER1$/check_nrpe -H $HOSTADDRESS$ -c check_aacraid

Add this to your servicedefs.cfg

define service {
use low-service-level
name aacraid-service
service_description aacraid
check_command check_aacraid
register 0
notification_interval 3600

Add the service

define service {
use aacraid-service
host_name host-with-crap-adaptec-crud
contact_groups upset-admin

And on the host you will be checking add this to nrpe.cfg

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Make Logwatch identify/ignore Subject line in maillog

Making changes to the way log entries appear in logfiles makes scream with ”
**Unmatched Entries**” error in the reports. My earlier post on maillog modification did the similar thing. Errors bailed out in logwatch report where in script failed to identify the Subject as the genuine entry. To resolve this, logwatch .conf file can be modified as follows to identify Subject: as a filter.

$Sendmail_MatchFilter = ” \
if ( $ThisLine =~ /Subject:/ ) { \
$ThisLine = ”; \

This helps to make logwatch ignore the Subject: line appearing in your sendmail maillog.


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Fix: Vmware WorkStation – Unable to change virtual machine power state: Internal error

Stale zombie processes deny starting VM’s after accidental / forceful termination of . VM Start process ends with the following error:

Unable to change virtual machine power state: Internal error

This can be resolved by sending command to -vmx command as follows

killall -s9 vmware-vmx

Now, your VM is ready to get back in action.

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Log Subject line in Sendmail maillog

Fighting spam is always a tough job. Why not log some specific headers to to make sysadmin’s job easier.

On servers it would be nice to see Subject line appearing in maillog. To get hold of the domain / user sending out emails with some specific subject line. By default you won’t see it happening. Here is how you can do it:

In /etc/mail folder open in your favorite editor and add the following lines at the bottom (just to ensure that you can differentiate them easily)

Klog syslog
HSubject: $>+CheckSubject
R$*< Give a TAB HERE >$: $(log Subject: $1 $) $1

Ensure that you remove < Give a TAB HERE > from the last line and press TAB key before saving the file.

Once this is done, generate as follows:

m4 >

Restart sendmail and that’s it. You will now be able to see Subject line appearing in /var/log/maillog


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SugarCRM Fix:Troubleshooting blank pages

Blank pages typically indicate a PHP error has occurred. If the error occurs at the login or home pages, it can disable the system entirely.

When encountering a blank page please try the following:

  1. For an onsite (self-hosted) instance, edit the PHP configuration file (php.ini) and set the following options:
    display_errors = On;
    error_reporting = E_ALL & ~E_NOTICE;
    After saving these changes the web service (Apache or IIS) will need to be restarted. After the restart, recreate the issue and have the server administrator look at any onscreen errors. The issue could be as simple as missing or unreadable files, but any onscreen error will be essential to resolving the issue.
  2. Have an administrator user try accessing: “https:///index.php?module=Administration&action=index” (replace “” with the application URL). If the blank pages began occurring after any changes made in Studio, Module Builder or Module Loader, try undoing the changes or running a Quick Repair and Rebuild on all modules from the Repair menu.


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Technology for Media Students

Slides used for a technical session at Commits College, Bangalore on 6th July 2011

Additional Reference links:-

  • A Day Without Media –
  • 15 Terrific TED Talks for New Media –
  • Nine top tips for Media Studies students  -

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