heyrick1973 -at- yahoo -dot- co -dot uk

Microsoft and FAT

I have previously stated that we should claim the FAT filesystem and everything related to it from Microsoft and give it (free and unencumbered) to the public so it can be maintained by people who have a clue.

Here is an even worse tale of woe. Sadly, I was too busy trying not to throw things to take pictures and screenshots.

I was compiling some code using OpenWatcom installed on a USB key 'F:'. I took a break, looked up something on-line. Shut down the compiler, but didn't reboot, hibernate, standby, or anything.
Went back to work on the code and found that Explorer took ages, then crashed.
Twice.
So I rebooted.

But Explorer still took ages. Only this time it didn't crash, it asked me if I wanted to format F: because it was unformatted.
WTF?

I tried chkdsk. This did not get far, as vfat.dll crashed and a little message popped up saying so. Brilliant, the one tool that might be used when there is something wrong with a filesystem is too unstable to cope with things going wrong.

I rebooted to the management console. I couldn't access E: (it was mounted as E: in the console) as there were errors. So I ran chkdsk that told me the device was okay, but to specify -p if I really really wanted to check it.

I did.

Unrecoverable errors were found.
(or a message to that effect)

Wait a second - aren't you the utility that is supposed to fix these sorts of...? No, I must be thinking of something else...

 

So I put the thing into my OSD. What will happen?

It mounted the drive, and it was able to access it. Slowly. dmesg recorded a lot of stuff like:

  stall on ep = 1 @1264
  ***STALL ep2 ***
  stall on ep = 1 @1264
  ***STALL ep2 ***
  stall on ep = 1 @1264
  ***STALL ep2 ***
  stall on ep = 1 @1264
  ***STALL ep2 ***
  stall on ep = 1 @1264
  ***STALL ep2 ***
  sd 0:0:0:0: SCSI error: return code = 0x8000002
  sda: Current: sense key=0x3
      ASC=0x11 ASCQ=0x0
  Info fld=0x0
  end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 2784
  FAT: FAT read failed (blocknr 2752)
I didn't miss the opportunity, I mounted the network server box and copied all of the files across. There were two "I/O error"s reported, but I don't know in what files as BusyBox makes no mention of the -v parameter to 'cp'. I did try to run lsof, but it was no good as by the time I've typed it in response to an error, the system would be copying something entirely different.

The files all copied, I reformatted the drive (under Windows) and copied them all back. Everything seems to be okay, though just in case I have the files ready to drop onto a DVD-R.

For what it is worth, it is a JetFlash TS4GJFT3 USB Device.

But that said, for Windows to be unable to work out corrective action... for the disc checker to crash when its purpose is to look at and attempt repairs of damaged discs, and for the recovery console version to just shrug... that is bad, all round bad.

 

There is, I note, an online recovery tool that can mask out bad blocks. I will give this a whirl if the problems continue - though I am not so sure it isn't Windows itself randomly screwing up. Transcend JetFlash recovery

 

A promotion!

No, not at work. I'll be lucky...

I participate in the Neuros forums for OSD issues. And I am fairly vigilant at reporting spam because, well, less spam is a good thing (which is why I'm less than amused at the amount of junk in some Android apps). Anyway, I got promoted, as this screenshot shows:

Global Moderator!
There you can see it, just below the username. Global Moderator. Not of a board, but everywhere.
This gives me the ability to delete posts, which I do if it is punting viagara (again) or something-or-other in a non-Latin character set so it looks like gibberish:
Confused smilies indeed!
I don't have the power to ban users. I wouldn't want that anyway. I pass my suggestions (i.e. if I just nuke a dozen identical spams) on to somebody else - sort of a 'second opinion'.
So now if I see a message like that shown above, I just click "Remove", say Yes to the prompt, and the dirt is gone. No Cillit Bang required.

 

Mobile phone camera

Camera module from Nokia 6230iOn the 21st January, opal wrote a comment suggesting that the camera in the old Nokia 6230i is IIC capable. That and a microcontroller, and I'm all set.

Well, it is a good idea, but perhaps one beyond the capabilities of my mathematically-corrupt mind. I would, ideally, like to record video on the helicopter, which would mean a controller and some basic sort of DSP (or a damn-fast processor core), plus loads of dev work to get the encoder running reliably.

Or I can buy something for €30-€40...

Still, that this camera module supports some form of IIC is an interesting prospect for future fiddling.

 

I feel like Don Quixote

They're popping up all over the place. What you see below is a view through my telescope (taken with the mobile phone!). It is maybe two miles away? There's a crane off to the right. These things are like buses, they come in multiples.
Time to tilt at imaginary giants?

Now, I'm not a big NIMBY. It is over there rather than over here, but...
you know...

I blame XKCD...

The moment their arms spun freely in our air, they were doomed -- for Man has earned his right to hold this planet against all comers, by virtue of occasionally producing someone totally batshit insane.
Copyright XKCD - Creative Commons Attribution-noncommercial 2.5 licence - http://www.xkcd.com/556/

Now go look at my picture again, and check out the eyes on that thing. They glow red too, like the Ohmu. That's when it is really pissed off.

 

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Rob, 14th February 2011, 12:39
Ah... Tripods.. The TV series scared the heebiejeebies out of me as a kid. The Caps !! I've lately got hold of the TV series, but still not got around to watching more than a couple of episodes. Maybe I'll go find the books; at least they had the ending.

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