Insanely tired and sore, but Cama’i was an incredible experience. I still haven’t checked out any of the photos or videos I’ve taken over the past three days, and also ran through a couple of rolls of film today. Was fantastic to be part of something like that and to put on such a show over three days. Pat + Marty were top guys to work with, and I met just some of the most awesome people. Need sleep and a few days to gather everything together in to some form of cohesive thoughts!
Archive for March, 2009
Yesterday was the first day of Cama’i, and although it was exhausting, was also great fun! There was a right mix of dance groups, including Japanese dancers and break dancers. It was fun seeing a mix of different native dancers, and with young kids and the elders on stage together, was nice to see. We’ve got a video feed set up to allow us to pump out the equivalent of a jumbotron behind the stage which is cool, and add in the sound and lighting and there’s plenty to keep Pat, Marty + I busy. We’re also pushing the video out around the school for people to see even if they’re not in the main hall.
I’ve been taking a bunch of photos and videos, but too tired to get them online now! I have to head back over in 10 minutes for round two – 12 noon to 12 midnight of performances should make it another long day!
Right after work at 5p.m I headed over to the high school to start setting up equipment for Cama’i, a three day festival of dance. The event starts tomorrow evening, so we had this evening and then through the day tomorrow to set up all the sound + lighting, plus three projectors across the hall and pump a video feed of everything around the building. It was around 1.am before I got home But, I knew it would be, and I got free pizza. I’ll be helping to run anything and everything according to Pat, so expect time back on a sound and light deck, as well as the audio + video editing through one of three computer systems. Should be fun!
Earlier today I also met up with Dean from KYUK to look over a duplex he’s renting out, and will be moving in the middle of next month My apartment here is just too far out the way of things and makes for either a lot of walking or a lot of short taxi rides at $5 a throw. This new place is within a couple of hundred yards of my main friends, and 10-15 minutes walk to work. The downstairs of the duplex alone is the size of my apartment, and upstairs has great views across to the mountains. I’m really excited. It’s a couple of hundred dollars more per month, but figured I may as well get somewhere that feels like a home to go home to, and I’ve met Dean a few times and he’s a real nice guy. Plus, it has a washer + dryer – no more hand washing in the bathtub I’ve had people offer to let me do laundry at their house, and walking so much isn’t exactly bad for me, but I’m hoping if I have somewhere more comfortable to live and be able to have people over me, it will help with my overall happiness out here. The little things all add up.
Anyways, since I want to get my state ID updated tomorrow before I head back to Anchorage in a couple of weeks and need be back at the high school by 11a.m, should head to bed and try to get some sleep!
Greg grabbed a photo of me helping line out one of Myron/Casie’s teams last night:
Thankfully his wife, Jen, wasn’t too worse for wear after a few falls during her race.
After missing the K300 Spring 50 race yesterday with snowmobile ‘issues’, I at least made it to the Sponsors Race this evening as it’s 5 minutes away from my apartment. Casie asked me to help line out one of the their teams so that was good fun as the dogs were all readied! I then jumped on the back of a snowmobile with Mike Parker to ride round as the guys raced, though left my camera in Casie’s truck which wasn’t part of the plan! Was good fun riding round for 40 minutes or so seeing the race develop. The first three runners were really close right through and taking it pretty seriously. Back at the finish line, this was one of the guys coming in:
This is Jen Schiedler, wife of Greg from work, bringing home the same Hoffman/McDonald team I raced month or so ago (who did surprising well considering she fell off three times, the first of which Mike + I were pretty worried about as we chased after the team and brought them to a halt):
Unfortunately, someone lost an ear along the trail:
But I suppose if you put these two guys together, they have a pair of ears between them:
Some of the front runner mushers had dodged away early, so only 4 of the 7 mushers were around for a group photo at the end:
All in all, a good evening, and I then headed out for dinner with Greg + Jen afterwards. In other news, I have running water again, which is nice, and I had another chiropractor appointment earlier. The muscular pains are a little worrying, and confusing, as the spine itself seems to have dropped right back in to place without problems. Hopefully things start improving soon.
Yesterday I developed a couple of rolls of 35mm film from when I’d been in Anchorage for the Iditarod weekend and started to scan them in to the computer. I’m working my way through processing them and figured I’d put a few up now. I also uploaded the rest of the Sunday drive photos from the Fuji S1000fd digital to this Flickr set.
Anyways, from the Olympus OM-1 35mm, playing around on the streets of Anchorage:
No trains to run me over, so made do with the signs instead:
Taken on Friday, I think there was a little racing going on the following day…
I didn’t end up with as many photos of the Iditarod dog teams as I thought I had on film, but this was a nice one of a couple of dogs waiting to be hooked up before the race:
Moving on to Sunday, a drive down Turnagain Arm looking across the Cook Inlet:
At the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, a moose lying down for a snooze:
My favourites, the bears. Not sure what the band across the left center of this frame is though:
Will process the rest of the scans and upload them to Flickr in the next few days. Quite happy with how these rolls turned out, only dropped about 15 out of 60 frames due the exposure or focusing being beyond recovery, and pretty much all those left I’m pleased with. Also improved my workflow in Photoshop Elements for importing and adjusting them, so definately improving.
Yesterday afternoon I ran out of water which isn’t much fun as it’s not going to be filled until tomorrow morning at the earliest At least I’d got my laundry done and developed some film first. I then fought off back spasms earlier to try and ride my snowmobile across the tundra for a K300 Spring 50 race only to have the choke lever snap off as it’s frozen after two weeks of doing nothing. That engine is not going to start in -5F after sitting for so long without being babied a lot. Joys of living out in Alaska again! Had no cash and checkbook has been eaten by squirrels seemingly, so I then tried trudging across the tundra and through trees to make it to the startline, but half an hour later was still 15 minutes shy. My maintenance window at work isn’t for another half an hour so sitting in the office twiddling my thumbs until I get to vent by downing some servers Not a good Sunday.
There’s a lot of confusion of APC’s PCNS software for VMware. Basically, ignore the generic instructions provided on the CD This was tested on multiple ESX 3.5 Update 4 hosts and worked perfectly connected to a pair 2200′s. From what we could tell, the pay-for version is basically just PCNS 2.2.3 but with compatible VMware components. Nothing on the CD tells you this, and the instructions just add to the confusion. These setup steps figured out in conjunction with Kurt Bunker from GCS and posted here for reference.
Prior to configuring the PCNS software you need to configure the SNMP card with the following (note that the admin password and passphrase need to be the same on multiple APC units):
1. IP address
2. Administrative account password
3. Administrator Passphrase (minimum 15 char, Max 32)
4. Set APC SNMP settings for shutdown: UPS tab -> Configuration -> Shutdown -> Low Battery Duration
With the CD inserted, from the command line of your ESX host:
During the install:
Default install directory
Hit enter to automatically install JRE
Once install finished, open require firewall ports *before* running PCNSConfig.sh – you can only run the script once – even if you cancel out, it won’t run again unless you run the full uninstall script. If you’re unhappy about opening all these firewall rules, browse the forums to see exactly what they’re doing. We found they all needed to be open to function correctly.
esxcfg-firewall -o 80,tcp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 80"
esxcfg-firewall -o 2161,tcp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 2161"
esxcfg-firewall -o 2161,tcp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 2161"
esxcfg-firewall -o 2161,udp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 2161"
esxcfg-firewall -o 2161,udp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 2161"
esxcfg-firewall -o 3052,tcp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 3052"
esxcfg-firewall -o 3052,tcp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 3052"
esxcfg-firewall -o 3052,udp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 3052"
esxcfg-firewall -o 3052,udp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 3052"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6547,tcp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 6547"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6547,tcp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 6547"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6547,udp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 6547"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6547,udp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 6547"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6548,tcp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 6548"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6548,tcp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 6548"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6548,udp,out,"APC PowerChute Port 6548"
esxcfg-firewall -o 6548,udp,in,"APC PowerChute Port 6548"
With the ports open, configure the PCNS software:
During the configuration:
Select option '3' - Configure for multiple Smart-UPS devices
Enter IP address, port 80 (default), username, password, authentication passphrase
'Yes' to register settings
Enter IP of second card - username, password + phrase set already based on previous details
'No' to register another card
'Yes' to start the PCNS service
Note: you can start/stop/check status of thePCNS service in /etc/rc.d/init.d at any time such as
Can then load up http://esx-hostname:3052 in web browser and:
Configure Events - scroll down to UPS: On Battery
Click fourth column from the end
Check box for 'Yes, I want to shut down the system' and enter 60 seconds in box below
Select 'Configure Shutdown' from sidebar
Uncheck the box to 'Turn off the UPS after shutdown finishes'
Depending on what else you’ve tried to configure, these instructions might need tweaking to remove previous components, and the JRE might be picky. But, we pulled a UPS without the shutdown signal being sent, and then correctly initiated a shutdown when the second UPS became low on battery. Oh, and make sure you set your power management options in the BIOS correctly – as the UPS initiates a clean shutdown, when the power is restored, make sure the server is set to always power back on On our R805′s, ‘Last’ is great in the event the power just drops whilst the server is running, but since it was shut down cleanly, will not power on with the UPS back online, needs to be set to ‘Always’.
A few photos from my drive along Turnagain Arm last weekend whilst in Anchorage for the Iditarod weekend:
The past two summers I’ve traveled along here quite a bit, but this was the first time I’ve seen it in the winter time which was cool. I then pulled off to head to Alyeska for the cable car ride:
If the ride up itself wasn’t worth it enough, the food at the restaurant and the views certainly were:
Back down the hill and further along the road, the wildlife center was fun with snow down. The reindeer certainly seemed impressive with their colouring and backdrop:
And the dominant male also was quite a sight (when he took a break from eating…):
Further round, I was really excited to see if the bears would be out, and they didn’t disappoint with a mother and her cub playing in the snow:
After a while, the mother would get bored and try to walk away only to be followed by the cub to start again! They looked pretty cool with a dusting of snow on them, and I got a bunch of photos over 15-20 minutes I hung around their enclosure:
Back at the visitor center, one of the small enclosures had a young deer in there quite happily munching away on some straw:
All in all, a fun way to spend a Sunday, certainly a little different to what I could get up to on a Sunday drive out here in Bethel. I ordered in some more developing powder over the weekend, so hopefully I can get the rolls of 35mm from the weekend developed soon and processed. Need to plan my next little getaway now…
Last week was busy. I broke 60 hours by the time I got home around 7p.m Sunday. We had an engineer out with our VMware deployment which didn’t exactly go to plan due to networking issues outside of our control which was a little frustrating, but totally expected to be honest. The handling and resolution of those issues within the department weren’t ideal though, which at the end of a long week, didn’t help improve matters It took a lot of phone calls and soul searching to make it back in to the office this morning.
On the plus side, the VMware environment delivers everything it’s meant to – we tested power supply redundancy, NIC redundancy, controller redundancy and hard drive redundancy on all the servers and SAN units; set up APC PCNS software for a multi-master setup with dual UPS’; had replication between the two Equallogic PS5000E SAN’s working; got the core Cisco 3560G configured and running everything nicely; and tested HA and DRS functioned correctly and responded to failures as expected. We now have a 3-node ESX cluster of Dell R805′s running through Virtual Center on a EQL PS5000E, with another PS5000E as a replica and a single Dell 2970 as standalone ESX host for disaster recovery. Due to our networking issues, the replica EQL box and ESX host could not be put offsite as planned, so that will be phase two (by which point a second 2970 can be re-deployed giving us a pair of off-site servers in the event of a failure at the core). Having spent so long getting everything planned out and now up + running, it’s really quite sad to be crippled by a single 100Mb uplink for all LAN traffic to/from the virtual environment so can’t really use it for much (too complicated to explain the logic behind a $700 10/100 ProCurve at our backbone I wasn’t fully aware of…).
But, I finally made it to the chiropractor this afternoon, which was definately needed after last week After a checkup, x-rays and review of past medical records, was hooked up to a TENS system to relax the muscles along hot pads before a bit of a massage, before actually getting on to the chiropractic adjustment. After that, I then lay down on a weird setup with a rolling base to decompress the spine. All in all, just a little different to treatment back in England! Have another couple of sessions this week, and figure I may as well make the most of it with the medical insurance covering so much of it.