One of those days…

It took 4 ThinkPads, 3 DVDs, two CDs, a Flash Drive and an iMac to make it through the day. No partridge. Tomorrow, five golden rings?

The Thinkpads: T61 is the primary workstation, but was suffering from SMART-reported disk drive errors and I spent half the day following the awesome instructions for bad block HOWTO for smartmontools to rescue the disk. In the meantime, the T41 served as backup workstation letting me surf, check email, etc. In the afternoon, the A31p has a legacy WinXP/IE7 install I can VNC into to test a client project. Meanwhile, I was also working on the Lenovo ThinkPad W700 to finally fix the running-out-of-disk-space problem thanks to System Restore, now disabled (thanks, System Restore! pffft!). Why do people keep using Windows?

The three DVDs were to burn the System Restore disks once there was a machine worth restoring.

The two CDs were something old and something new. I tried a Knoppix 5.11 CD to boot the W700 so I could do a partimage copy of the Vista OS partition where we’ve installed custom software for client testing. For some reason, the older Knoppix couldn’t handle the hardware and would fail to start. I grabbed the latest Knoppix, 6.2 (make sure you grab the November 18th or later image) and – whoa! – what a difference. The 6.x series is based on different software and uses LXDE as the default desktop — very slick!

I used the iMac to burn the CD. The most recent software on the T61, Fedora 11, seems to be confused about whether I have a CD-R on the machine or not, and I haven’t been able to burn a disk for a while.

I used the second CD (in the T61) to burn an image onto a 1Gb USB Flash drive . The Knoppix 6.2 comes with a built-in option to create the USB with a mouse click or two. It boots fast, has 284 Mb left over to preserve settings, and boots in the W700.

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This work by Ted Roche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.