So, what happened since January?

I noted in my first post that (a) I was not a diarist and (b) posts would be irregular. Now, even I will be first to admit that eight months (more or less) between posts is a little more than irregular.

I do have some excuses, though…

  1. Arma3_ApexOne of our team at work, let’s call him Sgt. Hurtz to protect the guilty, kept telling me about a game called ArmA 3. I eventually gave in and bought the game. Of course, after a very short introduction Hurtz buggered off to play a different game. And, of course, I was hooked. Usually play lone wolf and focus on AI missions. I get killed by other players much more that I kill them but its just a game. Since the Apex expansion came out I started playing, from scratch, the Tanoa map. I play the Exile mod on the Exile Yorkshire servers out of, obviously, Yorkshire in the U.K. The most important thing about an online server is the admins and, while nowhere experienced in online gaming, the Exile Yorkshire admins are always top notch. The have a nice Facebook page you can join where they listen to suggestions, deal with hackers/cheats, etc. And this game is far too good at allowing your to waste your time.
  2. DL360G7_frontI have written about how I used VMware ESXi in past posts. Since the latest version of ESXi came out (6.0.0) my old server, an HP ML310 G5, is not supported because of the built-in RAID controller. This was annoying but not such a bad thing as I was limited by the amount of RAM (8GB total and my work experience has shown that VMware wants RAM not CPU) and, frankly, the CPU was getting a little long in the tooth. It was time for an upgrade. I like HP servers so I wanted another Proliant. I looked on eBay and for a great price I saw an HP DL360 G7 with a 6 core Xeon at 2.93GHz, 3 x 300GB SAS drives and 72 GB of RAM. It also has four built in GigE ports. For under CDN$1,000. Perfect. I also decided to move storage to one of my NASes, the QNAP, via NFS. The only potential problem is that the QNAP NAS only has one GigE network port but so far no problems. I also moved to boot from USB thumb drive. Network-based storage also makes it easy to move from one VMware host to another :-).
  3. $_103Just before I went on vacation my old video IP server (Aviosys 9100A Plus Video Server) died. It was over four years old and only cost about $35 so no big deal. I found another good deal on eBay for a used Axis 2401+ professional grade video IP server. It was good deal (except for th2401_fronte fact that shipping from the US was more than just the price of the server). Since I had to mess with the code to get it working I saw no harm in working on something that I had been thinking about for some time: Take the 5-minute weather camera snapshots located on my weather page and compile them into a 24-hour time lapse video. The previously day’s video is located on It isn’t posted on as a link but at there is an index of the previous days’ videos. There is a problem with the time stamps so I haven’t put up the link. (Playing too much ArmA…)
  4. My son decided that he wanted to start taking notes at school on a laptop. Since they no longer teach how to write – how to print does not seem to be much better – typing his notes might be a great idea. (NOTE: I am not directing this at teachers. I do quesSurfacePro4-DarkBlueKeyboardtion those who are setting up the school curriculum and I am not the first one to question it. See questions on math…) So, off to Best Buy and Staples we went since the back-to-school sales were on. Microsoft had $300 off on the Surface Pro 4. (No more plain Surface – it seems the Pro has replaced the plain surface and the Surface Book is the new “pro”.) Since we demo’ed the Surface Pro 4 at work and I had one for almost a month I thought that it would be a great deal. The Surface Pro 4 is the tablet that I would like to have at work when the time comes. I use OneNote for all my meeting notes, etc. and the Pro 4 is a great combination. Light, removable keyboard, great stylus (my HP Revolve 810 G1’s styles defies description it is that bad…).
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