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Comment DC Experiences (Score 1) 504

I work in a datacenter with large numbers of un-raided servers. Generally when someone wants to fix a drive, they just want their data off. Corrupted Filesystems due to Physical Problems: Corrupted filesystems are frequently due to bad blocks in the filesystem metadata. The fs metadata tends to go first because its the most read part of the disk. I've had really good luck with ddrescue for this sort of error (at least for ext3). Have ddrescue skip error blocks and keep a log of bad blocks, otherwise it'll literally take a week to recover. (Instructions: http://www.forensicswiki.org/wiki/Ddrescue) Fried Drive Controllers: These will generally completely fail to turn on or read at all. They're usually not detected as disks. Replacing the PCB would probably work if I were any good at hacking type soldering. If you're tempted to try sticking a drive in the freezer, just let it sit for 1-4 months instead. I believe it's effectively the same fix but with far lower of a chance of borking the electronics due to mosture. Believe it or not a fair number of drives will come back to live after this period of time (~15-20% I would *guess*). Mainly you should just be aware of the warning signs. Disappearing files, folders that cause crashes, ext3 related stack traces, and filesystems being auto-remounted as read-only are all signs that its about time the evacuate to a new disk within a day, two at the max. Bad ball bearings generally don't kill hard drives. Disks making weird unlubricated drive bearing/shaft sounds can still work for a year or so. If this disk seems to shutter or obviously has problems starting to spin you should definetely copy your data to a new disk, anything less will mainly just injure people's hearing. The main problem with bad bearing is that it *really* increases the amount of heat in the computer (which in turn can kill hard drives).

Comment I think it's a good idea (Score 1) 436

Ignoring for a moment that this will give the Iranian government a high level of control over standard email communications, (ignoring, IGNORING), I think this is actually a very good idea. Think of it as a technological tariff on free internet services, with the intent to create jobs and a demand for technologically adept people. It's almost benevolent (if it wasn't for the unfettered access to other's communications part).

Comment Re:Ummm... (Score 1) 387

Powershell really isn't bad at all, and Microsoft has a fair amount of different scripting approaches and languages, all of which have different applications. I still don't like Windows that much (why did Win 7 remove the telnet command??? And RDP?????) but it's becoming more Unix-like, and with those changes it's becoming a bit better for tasks like you describe. But just to make my opinion clear, given a choice I'd still take Linux over Windows for any task other than an AD server (yes I'm aware that samba can do that now).

Comment Re:Ummm... (Score 1) 387

When Windows 7 was in it's infancy, I burned a copy of ReactOS and told someone that it was a pre-release. It was actually sort of plausible due to it's inability to run for any great length of time. I've played with it a bit - I completely understand the developer's decision as the current ReactOS isn't actually usable, though it can be a fun way to kill a couple hours. Try seeing if you can get any malware from vx.netlux.org to work on it - I got one worm to function for almost 3 seconds!

Comment There is a very good reason they're doing this (Score 2, Insightful) 539

I know exactly why your hosting provider needs your root password - that's because it's absolutely impossible to tell whats wrong with your server without a valid login, preferably root. If your machines aren't showing orange hardware failure lights, and you have no proof or data on a networking outage, then it's 90% sure to be an issue with the software on your machine. Since it's the most likely problem, it's unreasonable to expect your hosting provider to immediately spend a lot of time investigating the last 10%. You have two options (three actually): 1) Provide a root login 2) fix it yourself (this may require going to the datacenter in person) 3) see if they can work with an account with limited priviledges (it must be able to read logs and see all processes at the least). You also might want to try posting on serverfault - I can't comment on the technical end as you've supplied no detail Actually the support staff would probably be happiest if you fixed it yourself. In addition, have you considered that they may have brought down your machine or machines, to run memtest86+ or the like? Are you *sure* they rooted it? My only advice is to see if they'll accept a limited account (that can go through logs and see all the running processes).
Earth

Huge Arctic Ice Shelf Breaks Off 736

knarfling writes "CNN is reporting that a chunk of ice shelf nearly the size of Manhattan has broken away from Ellesmere Island in Canada's northern Arctic. Just last month 21 square miles of ice broke free from the Markham Ice Shelf. Scientists are saying that Ellesmere Island has now lost more than 10 times the ice that was predicted earlier this summer. How long before the fabled Northwest Passage is a reality?"

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