Installing SUSE Enterprise Server without a DVD-ROM

Last week I had a problem. I was tasked with installing SUSE Enterprise Server but the server we were to install the OS on did not have a DVD-ROM and would not boot via USB. I tried to resolve this issue by using CD media or a mini iso/network install, but I found that Novell has decided to no longer support these options with the enterprise version of their distro. Strangely they still offer these options if you use OpenSUSE.

First I tried using the OpenSUSE network install (mini iso) media, but it would not allow me to use the SUSE Enterprise Server network installation source. Eventually, I came up with a working solution. I figured I post it here for anyone else who needs it. Please note these instructions assume you are using linux.
Read the rest of this entry »

Chrome URL Expander Version 0.9.2 released!

Updates, Updates, Updates.

This is a minor release of the Chrome URL Expander extension for Google Chrome. This release cleans up the code making the install smaller. It also removes the JQuery plugin provided by Ben Alman. It replaces that plugin with a much smaller one of my own writing that does only what I need and not all the other great stuff Ben’s does. This extension still uses longerurlplease.com for it’s URL lengthening services. If you have already installed the extension from Chrome URL Extension – chrome.google.com/extensions then you will not need to do anything, your extension should update automatically.

URL’s that can be expanded include:
bit.ly, cli.gs, digg.com, fb.me, is.gd, j.mp, kl.am, su.pr, tinyurl.com, goo.gl, 307.to, adjix.com, b23.ru, bacn.me, bloat.me, budurl.com, clipurl.us, cort.as, dwarfurl.com, ff.im, fff.to, href.in, idek.net, korta.nu, lin.cr, livesi.de, ln-s.net, loopt.us, lost.in, memurl.com, merky.de, migre.me, moourl.com, nanourl.se, om.ly, ow.ly, peaurl.com, ping.fm, piurl.com, plurl.me, pnt.me, poprl.com, post.ly, rde.me, reallytinyurl.com, redir.ec, retwt.me, rubyurl.com, short.ie, short.to, smallr.com, sn.im, sn.vc, snipr.com, snipurl.com, snurl.com, tiny.cc, tinysong.com, tinyurl.com, togoto.us, tr.im, tra.kz, trg.li, twurl.cc, twurl.nl, u.mavrev.com, u.nu, ur1.ca, url.az, url.ie, urlx.ie, w34.us, xrl.us, yep.it, zi.ma, zurl.ws, chilp.it, notlong.com, qlnk.net, trim.li, and url4.eu

I will be posting rollover expansion support and a on/off button very soon. I will also be releasing this extension under the MIT License.

I hope you enjoy it! If you find any bugs or have any extensions, let me know.

New Version of Chrome URL Expander is now live.

Version 0.9.1 of the Chrome URL Expander is now live. It supports a ton of shortening services. For the complete list check out http://www.longurlplease.com. This extension simply expands shortened urls found on web pages you visit. It does this automatically as you browse the internet.

This is done by using the API found at http://www.longurlplease.com and the jquery longurl plugin by Ben Alman .

Version 0.9 now has options!

You can now control the number of characters displayed when the link is updated as well as control if you want to update the link text, the link target, or both. See screenshot for more details.

More features to follow, including rollover expanding and a on/off button.

You can install the extension from here: Chrome URL Extension – chrome.google.com/extensions

If you installed version 0.9.1 from my previous post. Please uninstall it before installing it from the link above. This will allow google to update the extension for you in the future.

Chrome URL Expander

I have created a new chrome extension called Chrome URL Expander. It simply searches pages you vist for shortened URLS and expands them so you can see where they really go. Currently this extension only supports URLs shortened with the bit.ly service. I have an update pending review (Version 0.9) with google that will allow the extension to support a whole slew of shortening services including:

bit.ly, cli.gs, digg.com, fb.me, is.gd, j.mp, kl.am, su.pr, tinyurl.com, goo.gl, 307.to, adjix.com, b23.ru, bacn.me, bloat.me, budurl.com, clipurl.us, cort.as, dwarfurl.com, ff.im, fff.to, href.in, idek.net, korta.nu, lin.cr, livesi.de, ln-s.net, loopt.us, lost.in, memurl.com, merky.de, migre.me, moourl.com, nanourl.se, om.ly, ow.ly, peaurl.com, ping.fm, piurl.com, plurl.me, pnt.me, poprl.com, post.ly, rde.me, reallytinyurl.com, redir.ec, retwt.me, rubyurl.com, short.ie, short.to, smallr.com, sn.im, sn.vc, snipr.com, snipurl.com, snurl.com, tiny.cc, tinysong.com, tinyurl.com, togoto.us, tr.im, tra.kz, trg.li, twurl.cc, twurl.nl, u.mavrev.com, u.nu, ur1.ca, url.az, url.ie, urlx.ie, w34.us, xrl.us, yep.it, zi.ma, zurl.ws, chilp.it, notlong.com, qlnk.net, trim.li, and url4.eu

Beyond the new services, version 0.9 also has options. You can control how the link is displayed as well as toggle if the displayed link or target should be changed. This means you can just have the link target updated, just update the link text, or update both.

You can install the extension from here: Chrome URL Extension – chrome.google.com/extensions

If you don’t want to wait for google to aprove the latest version of my extension. You can download it here. However the file linked will not auto-update. Once google updates their page you can simply uninstall Chrome URL Expander and reinstall it from the google link above.

jQuery CSS3 Rounded Table Corners

Recently, I had a desire to round the corners of my some tables I was using in a project. This project is to be very image light and I did not want to use images. I also wanted to use collapsed tables so normal css3 functions such as -webkit-border-radius would not work by default. Realizing that it was ok for Internet Explorer to not have the rounded look, but only function properly, I decided the solution was to write a jQuery plugin that would use -webkit-border-radius/-moz-border-radius and emulate a collapsed table.

Enter tableCorners.

This is a very simple jQuery plugin that does just that. It will take a regular table, set the cell spacing to 0 and then round the top and bottom corner cells properly to emulate a collapsed rounded table. It supports thead, tbody, and tfoot and plain old tables. Read the rest of this entry »

PastryKit – Real Webapp development for OSX?

I recently ran across an article on a very interesting topic. The topic was about a javascript toolkit apple was using to make a website feel the closest to a native iphone application that we have seen yet. You can see an example of this (using your iphone of course) at http://help.apple.com/iphone/3/mobile/

The framework allows you to work around many of the common problems with iphone web application development: scrolling, bouncing menu bars, and the address bar. The site works great on my iphone 3GS.

Here is to hoping apple will release this framework for us to use as well. This could be a huge boon to iphone web applications.

In development: Twitnit a new twitter desktop client for OSX 10.6

Hello everyone,

I know it’s been a long time. I’m touching base to announce that I have finally got oAuth working properly with twitter and objective-c using the oAuthConsumer framework. I am now in the process of finalizing my code and beginning to build a GUI to allow you to read and create posts. If everything goes well, I should have a beta up to test in a few weeks.

The new application is called Twitnit. I hope to eventually port it to the iphone as well.

Here’s a screenshot proving I finally got oAuth working.

oAuth in action!

oAuth in action!

Accessing remote computers via SSH with Finder

As a long time linux user, I have been familiar with FUSE or File Systems in Userspace as a way to access file systems that have traditionally been either unsupported on the platform or not file systems at all such as youtube or SSH. Recently I decided to attempt to do the same thing on OS X. What I found was a project called macFUSE. macFUSE lets you use FUSE file system drivers on the OS X operating system.

The macFUSE Banner

Installing macFUSE is very easy. Simply download the disk image provided here and install the package. It places a preference pane in your control panel and checks itself for updates. However macFUSE by itself is worthless. You need to have filesystem drivers that use macFUSE to do anything interesting with it. I should note that these drivers are not drivers in the Microsoft Windows sense, but simply just applications that use the macFUSE library. My main purpose for this was to be able to mount SSH connections as volumes in finder. So I will be explaining how to setup and use the SSH Filesystem for macFUSE. Please not there are tons of other filesystems out there for macFUSE such as ntfs (great for you windows users), youtube, or spotlight.
Read the rest of this entry »

My tools for web development on OSX

I am the first developer in my office to make a serious push to switch from windows. First I went to my good old ubuntu and all was well. Recently however I switched to OSX at the home and found it to be the perfect setup for me. The switch however was not without it’s trials. I had to find new tools to do the same tasks I had been doing on other operating systems.

I have been using OS X almost exclusively as my desktop and development environment for a little over 6 months now. I have reached a point where I have finally settled into a grove and I am now getting asked what tools I feel are the best to get the job done. I figured that now is as good of a time as any to list the tools I can’t live without on OSX.

Before I start. Let me tell you how I like my web development environment setup. It is a fairly simple setup. I like to have a web browser open in one screen for checking my progress, a ftp client and a text editor open in another screen. I typically do not do image creation, that is handled by other team members, but if it is required I like to do that work on a separate virtual desktop. I do not run any services on my development machine. Instead I have a test server setup exactly like my production server. I sFTP into that server and do all my work there directly. Once I have reached a point where I am ready to commit my code to our repository. I simply download the folder off my test server and commit the changes.

So without further ado, here is my list of must have applications and plugins for web development.
Read the rest of this entry »

Using Synergy software KVM with OSX and Linux

I finally convinced my wife to move to OSX. Because of this change I was able to take her old computer and put it to good use. I installed ubuntu 9.04 on it and set it up as a fileserver and a video server for my playstation 3. I am also using it for some other things. I quickly found it annoying that anytime I wanted to use it I needed to either SSH in (And forward X-windows if I wanted to run graphical apps), or pull out the bulky keyboard and mouse I have and place them on my already crowded desk. To help out with this visualization here is a quick picture of what my desk looks like:

My desk in my home office.

My desk in my home office.

As you can there is little room for another keyboard. This is where Synergy comes in.

What is Synergy?

Synergy is a open source software KVM solution. This means it allows one computer’s keyboard and mouse to seamlessly move to another machine using software. It supports Linux/Unix, Apple’s OSX, Microsoft Windows 95, 98, NT, ME, 2000, and XP. They do not list Vista or Win7 as a supported system and I do not have a license to test with. The software functions by setting up one computer to act as a server (The computer with the keyboard and mouse) and then setting up your other computers as clients. With the rest of this article I will cover the setup and use of Synergy.
Read the rest of this entry »