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Packrat Payoff

Via Eric, it turns out Intel was offering a $10,000 reward for an original issue of the magazine where Moore’s Law was first published. They found one.

The guy who had it reminds me of me, though I have become more aggressive about throwing things out. One exception is I still have the first issue and several years of subsequent issues of an old magazine called “In Business,” oriented to small and micro businesses. If I recall correctly, it started in the late seventies.

Still, it sounds like keeping the magazine in question would be almost like keeping copies of CRN (Computer Reseller News), a free trade journal published weekly. I tend to let those pile up, but after about a year they get thrown away, leaving all but the most recent couple months gone.

How About “May Apple Linux”

Ian‘s Linux adventures continue, which is interesting in itself. However, this reminded me of an item I saw yesterday on Hearst having threatened the Mandrake Linux folks into changing to Mandriva.

Who the hell cares about an obsolete, obscure cartoon character that happens to share the dictionary word for a plant with a respected Linux variant? Ian had the right word for it: Ludicrous.

It reminds me of a friend’s experience owning vader.com, when once upon a time the Lucas people called him. He told them there was nothing to stop him from using the Dutch word for “father” and they never bothered him again.

Timeouts, OWA, RPC, Exchange 5.5, NT4 proxy,Win2k homed mailbox

I just sent the following e-mail to two mailing lists of former employees of a company I once worked at doing support, many of whom were supporting Exchange or NT. Figured it couldn’t hurt to cross-post it here as well.

Once upon a time, I couldn’t install NT4 on a new mail server, so I used Windows 2000 Server, setting up Exchange 5.5 on that.

I then started to follow directions for moving mailboxes, using test cases (a couple former employees and test accounts), which would ultimately have led to everything being moved and then changing which was the primary server for the site per available directions.

Trouble was, when I tested from Outlook 98 on an NT box, I got inability to resolve names and was at a loss. But duh, I never tried it from another machine, and when I got back to it, I found it was a problem with the NT box specifically. Weird.

So I did the ultimate test. I moved my mailbox, which was the largest (turns out it’s the second largest now).

Everything worked fine. I could connect. A copy of each e-mail still copied to this mail account.

Well, mostly. I started going long periods wondering what was up, sending myself tests, then getting them in bunches later. It looks like that is a result of RPC binding errors, don’t have the exact text from the event log on the proxy server/gateway with me, when the proxy server tries to talk to the new mail server.

Thoughts? (The next problem I mention may be related so hang on…)

What I gather based on an initial search is that it could be on account of network traffic, on account of past damage from a virus/worm (the proxy was never the same in subtle ways after it got Nimda way back when, and I have yet to reinstall the whole thing), or because it would be useful to go into raw mode – something I have never done or contemplated – and change a setting. None of what I saw offhand addressed the exact situation: Exchange 5.5 to Exchange 5.5, NT4 to Windows 2000. It seemed to be all about mixes of Exchange 5.5 and Exchange 2000.

Bear in mind that I am no Exchange admin. I simply do that as part of doing everything and somehow muddle through. The answer could be something simple.

The other thing, which I was in no position to discover until I moved my account, is that OWA is broken now.

When trying to use OWA for an account homed on the Windows 2000 server, it times out with:

error ‘ASP 0113′
Script timed out

I believe that is tied to at least some of the RPC errors I am seeing in the NT4 proxy’s event log, though perhaps those are actually all being generated when transferring mail from the NT4 to 2000 machine. Heck, for all I know all I have to do on 2000 is something that makes IMC talk to it properly.

As for OWA, any thoughts on the cause, and might the sometime mail delays relate to the OWA timeouts?

One more data point… There have been more general problems with the proxy lately. It’s been slow, more than I think any increase in traffic through it should justify. It’s needed more regular rebooting to get internet mail flowing again. It has Sybari Antigen and Spam Manager (well, they’re homed on the primary, to-be-replaced mail server, but Spam Manager does its work on the proxy) on it, and Spam Manager sometimes seems to strangle things, or simply stops working (which I think I have resolved by not letting its logs get too full). The machine has complained it was running out of space on the D drive with as much as 1.8 GB of free space. It was also hosting 9 GB of documents, but the speed and reliability problem remained after I moved the docs elsewhere. Figured I’d mention this in case the problem owes more to whatever ails that particular server than to any communication issue or setting between or on the Exchange 5.5/NT4 gateway and Exchange 5.5/Windows 2000 servers.

Any thoughts? I mean, besides getting the client to upgrade everything.

What About .US?

You want something that makes absolutely no sense? An agency I never heard of has abruptly and without explanation has disallowed private registration of .US domains.

They have this authority how?

They did this unceremoniously why?

Let’s see… for government we have .GOV, so .US can’t be needed for that.

.COM, .NET and .ORG are worldwide and give no special indication you are someone from the United States.

So yeah, that leaves .US as an option for folks in the US who would like a domain that identifies them geographically. Great.

Details, Details

Last night I setup a new HP1160 printer to be shared by two senior secretaries who do administrative work and can especially use it to print labels readily. I didn’t print from any applications, but it tested fine, and could print from both.

This morning the person whose machine it physically is connected to e-mails, with no subject of course, which is a big pet peeve of mine:

Marshall, I can’t seem to print to the new printer. I went to print options and selected HP 1160 and I get an error message. Help!

Sigh…

What’s the error? Did you change anything? Does a test page still print? Does it still print from the other computer? Is it still turned on the way I left it? What’s the error?

The result of my reply along those lines will probably be another e-mail an hour from now with terse, incomplete responses that don’t help much. I have been dealing with these people for more than six years, and they still almost never provide detail enough to help them on a first pass – often not as much detail as above – despite all that experience being asked for more info.