Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

It Works :-)

Posted: June 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

OK, it’s Monday morning here in the Dallas area and for the first time in over a year the sprinklers came on automatically.  The new system I installed yesterday worked as expected.   I don’t have to worry about remembering to get up and press a button at 06:00 AM on the first and third Monday of the month anymore.  All good. 


Left Canonical

Posted: June 11, 2013 in General, ubuntu, Uncategorized

After almost 6 years the time has come to move on. I’m no longer with Canonical. New things on the horizon. I still plan on participating in Linux especially ARM Linux and also still being a part of Ubuntu Linux Community too.

It’s been an interesting journey with Canonical, managing engineers around the world, up at weird hours of the day, starting a new flavour of Ubuntu (ARM), fighting daylight savings time twice a year, and finally supporting sales folks.  Always interesting, but I’m looking forward to the next new thing.  I will however miss the people, for the last 6 years I worked with some really smart people and I learned a lot from them.

It was a fun day, trying to lay out the Panda server cluster again.  With the original design each Panda daughter card mounted the laptop sized HD directly on it.  With the dropping of the daughter card, I had to mount all of the HD’s in external SATA to USB containers, and then make mounts to hold all of them.  That was a success but as you can well imagine it took up a lot of unplanned space.  That space was supposed to hold the large regulated 5VDC power supply, the 12VDC power supply and the remote control relay board.   Ha, no chance of that now. :-/

What to do, what to do?

With lots of moving things around in the box I finally arrived at mounting all three items on the side of the case, looking at it from the front everything is mounted on the right hand side of the case.  I made up templates of each item, put locater holes in each template and then took the side off the case and out to the drill press we go.  Lots of drilling and then filing to remove burrs.  Couple hours or so later, everything mounted cleanly.   Nice, 4 hours rearranging stuff, drawing templates, 2 hours machine and mounting.  Almost an entire day shot.  Still I think it is going to be better then the original design with the daughter cards.

With the design change of not using daughter boards changed the way the Panda boards are  put together.  The new design has some challenges are where to put the USB Hard Disks.  Really had to save space as we added 2 USB hubs for booting and an extra Panda board.  The Pandas are mounted forward in the case, with the 5vDC and 12VDC power supplies mounted on the side panels, followed by 2 fuse panels and relay control board also mounted to the side panels.

Today will be spent doing physical mounting of the hardware and tomorrow and Monday wiring the hardware up.  Need to order some more connectors and wires as the USB booting adds an extra wire per Panda that was not in the original design and need to bring out the Ethernet and serial port of the extra Panda board.

The pictures show the rough layout, there may be some fine tuning as I try to mount everything in the box.

More on case size testing

Posted: December 3, 2010 in Uncategorized

Dragged out an old 19″ rack case yesterday, measured and the width is 17″ across the front, dropped the 10 stack into the case and it was nice to see that indeed there will be plenty of room to route 10 Ethernet, 10 serial and 40 power wires around the end of the stack without bending the Ethernet too much. So the correct long case will fit 2 stacks of 10, for a total of 20 dual core A9 ARM systems into a single 3U case. Nice.

Today I finish up a 9 pin male to RJ45 serial cable and ship it off to the data center for testing. If I get it correct, they will be able to use a straight through RJ45 cable to hook these up to the Cyclades serial console server. Want to get this right before I have 20 cables made into a single cable harness.