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janovac live!


The daughterboard for the pico-ITX case arrived last Friday. I was lucky to have gotten it, I learned. The replacement was not covered under the warranty, but they sent me one anyway. Props to iDOTpc for their helpfulness.

It was an effort in carefully plugging the parts together in order to make the computer functional. The ultimate culprit was the power supply, which was not putting out enough power even when it was blue-lighting (not reporting a short). In the end I had to replace it with a pico power supply I bought when I was hoping to construct a computer from scratch.

This power supply pumps out the power, but it is too big for the case. I have leave the power supply outside the case, and insert insert its power cables through the serial port hole. This is not an ideal solution, but at this point I was unwilling to delay bringing up the Janovac any longer. It doesn't matter: The Janovac lives! Now it sits on the wire rack next to my router and DSL modem.

The power supply was the first problem. The second problem was the inability of Linux to deal with my ViewSonic LCD monitor. Linux installs fine; but there is nowhere that I can go to set the video. Red Hat Linux and Fedora Core used to have a configuration screen where you can set the video on a computer. But that screen is gone in newer Fedora versions and evidently never existed in Ubuntu. In any case the screen would cycle around three or four steps constantly. It may even show an X Windows basic cursor. But there would never be anything that I can interact with. In the end I went with a Fedora install without Gnome/X, using the command-line interface instead.

This is not too big a handicap. As the Janovac is being used as a server, the visual interface is not necessary; and doing without it saves on processor and storage resources. Next I set up PuTTY on my home box; thanks to this secure shell program, I don't even need to connect a separate video, keyboard or mouse. Now I will need to set a Samba share, which I have not done in a long while.

Posted on the Dysmey Blog on 29 January 2008.