Like Linux Journal but are too cheap to buy your own subscription? Or just like freebies? Then now’s your chance to get a free subscription. Linux Journal is holding a contest this week. You simply have to watch their Tech Tip Videos, collect the secret letters. You can find full details on their site. I’ve embedded the first video below or you can head over to Linux Journal to watch it there.

Additional videos to watch for the secret letters include:

It’s been a few days since I wrote anything and I’ve been trying to keep this site updated, so what’s new?

Well our plumbing nightmare is finally over. Wolverine Brass sent us the replacement parts and the Master Plumbing got them installed. We still had to pay for the wrong parts Benjamin Franklin Plumbing told us we needed1 since we ordered them through the good plumbers, but at least the bleeping tub if finally fixed. BFP‘s foreman didn’t call me back when he said he would. Instead he left a message on our answering machine asking me to call him back, but I wasn’t feeling well so I didn’t get to it right away. When I did call, I got his v-mail and he never called me back. A few days later he stopped by and after talking to my wife; he agreed to refund everything we’d paid except for ~$60 (price of a standard service call). All in all it was an expensive repair but at least it’s fixed. Granted if I’d known they’d told her they regularly keep those stupid parts we needed in stock; I wouldn’t have been so willing to pay even that service fee. Ah well, can’t win ’em all.

I enjoy the convenience of using a wireless network around my house, but I don’t want it too open. When I first set it up, better security protocols (e.g. WPA) were not well supported by the Linux distro I was using (particularly not with the wireless card I use). Recently I decided to revisit that issue was was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to implement. So rather than relying on the depreciated and easily cracked WEP, I now get use better encryption around the house making me very happy. And as a side bonus to this, since I’m now connecting to my wireless network via the default method rather than through clever manipulation of the configuration files, my smb shares are getting mounted automatically on boot!

This success lead me to trying to connect my old 3G iPod to my PC via firewire, but that’s where the success ends. Ubuntu recognizes that I’ve connected it but is unable to mount the iPod automatically and when I try manually it throws a lot of errors. Thing is I’m not sure if that’s all Ubuntu’s fault as the last time I try connecting this iPod to a Windows box; it had all kinds of problems too. I’d try a USB connection but even if that works it doesn’t do me much good given this iPod cannot be charged over USB. I’ve gone a bit of googling on this but it’s not a common problem (most people have newer iPods these days) and the few examples of the problem I found out there are all stuck at the same point I am.

Lastly, we finally have cube walls at work. We moved into this office space back in December and have been waiting on the walls to come in. Personally I got to liking the openness of the office without the walls. Especially since these walls do not appear to have any sound deadening properties. Mostly these walls block much of the light from around the room, particularly for supervisors in our room as they’ve got 6 foot tall walls (the rest of us have 3-4 foot walls). *shrug* Oh well, it’s not likemanagement cares about my opinion on the office decor and I do still have a job. Which in this economy is a very good thing.

And that’s all I’ve got for now. So good night and good luck.

1 See I Hate Plumbing for details.