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Messages - Neil Waldhauer

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Events / Warpstock 2019 - Presentations Wanted
« on: August 16, 2019, 10:25:56 pm »
I'm starting this thread to help bring both presenters and attendees to Warpstock 2019 in Orlando, FL

Feel free to reply to this and give your own suggestions.

Suggested Topics
These are the topics that have been requested for presentation in 2019. We'd like you help. If you prepare one of these presentations, you can four options for presentation.
  • come to Warpstock in Orlando and present
  • Present remotely using Skype
  • Pre-record a video to be shown at the meeting
  • have one of us make your presentation

There are many VPN services available for those who might need to use public WiFi or who have other reasons to want a VPN.  None that I've seen has an OS/2 client, although many work on Linux.  Is there a way to use a VPN service with OS/2 and if so, how could one do so?
I recall David asking me about VPN services which were OS/2 compatible a couple of years ago. He may use one (whether or not it came from my recommendation, I have no idea).
InJoy might be a possibility (IPSec). If they run SSL, then OpenVPN build which is publicly available (Hobbes) - as we know from our own building experience at WS 2008 - uses the half-functional TAP/TUN driver (where only TAP works), and is less than suitable. AFAIK, most of the third-party VPNs use SSL.
Having an OS/2, Windows, or Linux system available at home as a VPN endpoint and using InJoy's VPN would work without having to subscribe to a third party service. Of course, this requires a second system to be available, solid broadband, and perhaps a DDNS provider.
Maybe one of the Bitwise guys might like to touch on this. Yuri maintains the InJoy product for them, and is familiar with how it works across all platforms.
The main drawbacks to IPSec, of course, are the need for a dedicated port for the tunnel, and difficulties with NAT traversal in some situations, vs SSL, which travels over the standard 443 and traverses NATs quite well.

USB Cables and You
I've been through a multi-hour remote troubleshooting session with a client using several USB -> Parallel adapters for his invoice printer (Oki Microline 391) and label printer (Zebra). Today, it dawned on me that we have daisy-chained USB cables and the system board, now aging, may not be putting out the voltage it once did. There are length limits for USB cables described in the spec. Length, quality, type of connector, type of device, whether there is a hub in the middle (and its type), a gender changer, and finally whether the device is FS, HS, etc., all play a role in whether the signal will get from point A to point B. There are some interesting USB multimeters available, too, on the cheap.
We get tickets for ArcaOS where printers do not get signal ("but it worked with eCS! - before I moved the printer across the room..."). Too often, people take cable length and quality for granted, and we are relying more and more on USB-attached devices. The problem will get worse with USB 3, simply due to the higher bandwidths available and greater sensitivity to overall cable quality (noise level and impedance).

We could do a session on ANPM and yum and how to handle the unexpected, including the nuclear option (how to blow away an entire yum/rpm environment, even when libc and friends are already installed under \usr\lib, and reinstall the bootstrap), how to handle broken yum databases, error messages, empty package windows, broken repository URIs, other python fun...).

OS/2 Memory
Sometimes with modern programs, OS/2 runs short of shared memory, or has fragmentation issues. Discuss how this happens and how to avoid it.

Config.sys (This is now a Warpstock 2019 presentation)
Reviewing the order of execution of statements in Config.sys and the proper order of loading drivers. Explain briefly what each driver does. This presentation is intended to acquaint the less technical user with the software controlled by the Config.Sys file.

OS/2 Demos
Video Wizard (Moving from SNAP to Panorama and back again)
making a new printer work when no drivers are currently available

Meeting details
Warpstock 2019 will be held at the Country Inn & Suites, Orlando Airport, located at 5440 Forbes Place, Orlando, Florida 32812.
This year's event will begin Friday, November 8 and continue through Sunday, November 10
Warpstock 2019 home page:
More information on Warpstock available at:

Hardware / Re: Airboot / M.2 SATA and/or PCI NVMe
« on: August 08, 2019, 03:51:15 pm »
I don't have an answer for the M.2 SATA, but I do have a current ThinkCentre M720s running. However, it's got serious issues you should know about.

The USB is completely non-functional. You will not even boot the install media until you add real USB 2.0 hardware.
The machine cannot reboot. It hangs instead. A fix is being developed by Arca Noae.
Sound does not work. You should be prepared to use a USB Audio adapter.
The installer will not see the network unless you use ArcaOS 5.0.4 or later.

Moderator's Note: Neil, I fixed your link, it was pointing to a local file.

Hardware / Re: ArcaOS Hardware Support Discussion
« on: August 01, 2019, 03:41:48 pm »
I am an ArcaOS reseller, and I'm fine with concentrating on Lenovo products. I prefer Intel chipsets because I'm familiar with their behavior under OS/2. I'd be willing to experiment with AMD if I had customer support (i. e. someone to actually buy an AMD-based computer)

Newer computer support on the Intel side is very, very slow to appear. My two latest computers work only with test versions of Arca Noae drivers. The next-to-most recent computers work well enough to use in production. This would not be true if Arca Noae had not developed their various drivers.

Web applications / Migrating Apache Web Server
« on: July 24, 2019, 03:41:37 pm »
I tried posting in the Google Group "Apache for OS/2", but my post disappeared so I'll try here, too.

I'm helping someone migrate from an old website hosted by OS/2 on an IBM 300 GL machine running Apache 1.3.6. The website is pretty old-school, but it has a Flash splash page.

The target machine is an IBM M-Pro, so not that much newer, but it has a working web server, Apache 2.2.23 installed as a part of the last OS/2 AMP release. It was hosting another simple website.

Looking at it, we thought to just transfer the HTDOCS directory replacing the one on the newer M-Pro with the one from the older 300 GL. This mostly works.

The problems are that web pages seem to fail to load on the first request from a browser, then the second and subsequent attempts seem to work. In addition, I can't seem to get the Flash screen to appear. (OK, on operating systems like OS/2 that do not have Flash, it's just a black page, but instead, requests for the .swf file just seem to try forever.

Those problems seem to be connected with a reconfiguration. How can I find documentation for Apache for OS/2, particularly something related to getting started?

I can log in and view Twitter only if I use the default theme in Firefox. I'm using Nightly 45 SUa2. Then if I try the new design, it goes back to "Sorry! We did something wrong." It will probably work again after my login expires.

By default theme, do you mean the nightly theme that Nightly ships with?

Yes, the one labeled "Default" on the add-ons screen. My logon expired, but I still could not see my pages until I used the link nyoa posted above.

I can log in and view Twitter only if I use the default theme in Firefox. I'm using Nightly 45 SUa2. Then if I try the new design, it goes back to "Sorry! We did something wrong." It will probably work again after my login expires.

Applications / Re: WINOS2 functionality on the Thinkpad X220 or X201i
« on: July 07, 2019, 03:47:12 pm »
The needed change is apparently in ACPI 3.23.10 or higher. I did have this problem with ACPI 3.23.9 and lower on my T540p. The same is true for T450s. Even if you are not shopping for a Blonde Guy laptop, you can read about laptop issues I have encountered here.

Article Discussions / Re: NY Subway switching to contactless
« on: June 27, 2019, 03:29:48 pm »
I can't comment on the future, but the old system will be around for a while.

On May 31 at noon, the MTA launched a pilot program of its new tap-to-pay system, known as OMNY, that will eventually replace swiping a MetroCard. The fare technology will roll out in phases, allowing transit officials to iron out the kinks as they work toward fully retiring the MetroCard in 2023. Now, riders can bypass lines to refill their MetroCards and simply tap their contactless bank cards or mobile wallet app on their smart phones to pay the fare.

Article Discussions / Re: NY Subway switching to contactless
« on: June 26, 2019, 08:52:53 pm »
They already thought about that.

Visitors have it no worse than before, because they can still use MetroCard.

Utilities / Re: Create an ISO from a CD
« on: June 18, 2019, 03:46:48 pm »
DVDDAO does it for DVD, maybe for CD, too?

dvddao --aspidriver aspinkk$ -d file:d:\temp\c2.iso scsi:1,1,0

Storage / Re: changing USB volume letter
« on: June 18, 2019, 03:42:26 pm »
You can assign a drive letter without losing data by using Logical Volume Management (Simple) in the setup folder.

I think you can assign "None" and get the drive mounted with the next available letter.

I'm not sure how the assigned letter works for old Warp 4 systems, but I recall that it seems to ignore LVM and just mount the next available drive letter.

Programming / Re: Mozturbo help
« on: June 16, 2019, 03:32:04 pm »
@Neil, Was it the SUa1 release you had problems with? It had a bad bug that is fixed in SUa2. The original Pentium M also seems quite stable.

Checking back, yes it was. I'll try SUa2. I don't judge stability quickly, and I doubt any report that does.

(Edit: I've tried it for a few days now, and SUa2 works better for me than GA2 from Bitwise.)

Applications / Re: WINOS2 functionality on the Thinkpad X220 or X201i
« on: June 15, 2019, 03:15:08 pm »
I have a Thinkpad T540p which runs WinOS2 only after updating ACPI to 3.10 or higher. I understand that ACPI has nothing to do with WinOS2, so I don't understand why that works.

Programming / Re: Mozturbo help
« on: June 14, 2019, 03:31:39 pm »
Only a few automated installers fail to support automated installation. Is it really that hard?

I'm finding that the Bitwise Firefox build is quite a bit more stable here. I'm guessing that depends on what web pages we visit. For the pages I visit, Bitwise Firefox lasts about 10x longer than Nightly. Neither one lasts very long.

Applications / Re: New verssion of VLC
« on: June 09, 2019, 05:26:41 am »
Are people not using a cmd file to start vlc? Here I use,
Code: [Select]
set BEGINLIBPATH=K:\vlc2\usr\local\lib;%BEGINLIBPATH%
vlc %1 %2 %3
which is located in K:\vlc2\usr\local\bin.

I don't use any cmd file. I do put the vlc lib directory on the LIBPATH entry, and VLC runs fine.

To get sound, I select K Audio interface audio output and DART. To get video under Panorama, I select Video Mode=DIVE.

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