Bitcoin hassles

Bitcoin lost it’s steam this year. Not even close to the last year’s levels. People lost faith in it, but big guys got upset with the buzz it created last December and maybe the slump has something to do with that. It was a threat for the financial system as very potent competitor. Even miners are backing off.

On the plus side, some local governments accept tax payments in bitcoin, some banks and financial institutions started to talk and think about providing services based on BTCs, I guess they will need to buy some stock to achieve this and they need it cheap. Governments will try to regulate it. read more

When will Google update kernel in Chromebooks

In the light or latest vulnerabilities found in Intel, AMD and some ARM processors found by Google researchers, everybody has summoned to create and install patches and fixes.

As an owner of one ARM Chromebook  currently running Linux Kernel Ver. 3.14.0 (Chrome OS after all updates installed) I am not sure whether it is subject of Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities, but according to Kroah-Hartman one of the main Linux kernel maintainers:

“If you rely on any other kernel tree other than 4.4, 4.9, or 4.14 right now, and you do not have a distribution supporting you, you are out of luck. The lack of patches to resolve the Meltdown problem is so minor compared to the hundreds of other known exploits and bugs that your kernel version currently contains. You need to worry about that more than anything else at this moment, and get your systems up to date first. Also, go yell at the people who forced you to run an obsoleted and insecure kernel version, they are the ones that need to learn that doing so is a totally reckless act.”

Question still remains: when Google will push a more up to date kernel in Chromebooks.

These devices are very popular in the Schools, they are on the top list of most selling PCs in Amazon etc. In this mobile World today they are not niche computers anymore.

If Google want to increase their market share, they should take more care of them.

 

Switching to Raspberry Pi 3

As my server was running on A20-OLinuXino-LIME board, it started to freeze. I thought it is software issue and after some update it will be fixed, but that didn’t happen. When freezes even blinking LED stops blink.

So I decided to try Raspberry PI and installed Raspbian OS. No SSD disk as before, all running on micro SD card.

I am playing wit Pis for a long time (my first one is Rpi 1 Model B still running my weather station on the balcony).

Here I am – my blog on Pi, so far so good, will see.

My Accounting program

I’ve made a program for tracking my finances. It is not a big deal, but it does the job for me.

It is web based, works on top of LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL and Php).

You can try it – the code is available at: GitHub

The install:

1). Drop the source code in a folder at Apache’s document root:


git clone https://github.com/jet-/tinyacc

2). Create a database in MySQL (for example acc_usd), and change the conf.php file accordingly.

3). Tables creation – run:


mysql -p acc_usd < mysql_tables.sql

 

Done! Pont your browser to: https://server/tinyacc/rep1.php?curr=usd

Do an initial data entry to initialise the data – for example loading your bank accounts/cards and cash, I am doing it by: cash — Amount — Other. Or Checking account — Amount — Other

You can start adding your daily transactions as they happen. For example cash withdrawal at an ATM: cash — Amount — Checking account. Paying a bill: Electrical bills — Amount — Checking account. Depositing money in Savings account: Savings account — Amount — Cash

Documents which are not accounted (don’t have the flag “accounted”) are ignored in calculations.

Balances are calculated dynamically and you can account or “un-account” or edit old documents at your will.

You can create more databases – for example for different currencies (I have one for bitcoins or I should say mini Bitcoins) .There are different reports and charts to have a better clue about you finances. Using the program you can also check when you bought something and whether warranty expired or not by searching by text or part of the text.

Hope you will find it useful.

Счетоводната ми програмка

Направих си една програмка за следене на финансите ми. Не е нещо особено, но на мен ми върши добра работа.

Уеб базирана, работи върху LAMP stack – Linux, Apache, MySQL и Php.

Ако някой иска да я ползва – кодът се намира: GitHub

Инсталацията е:

1). Изсипва се кода в Апаче документ руут-а:


git clone https://github.com/jet-/tinyacc

2). Прави се база данни в MySQL (например acc_bgn), и се описват параметрите в conf.php

3). Създават се таблиците:


mysql -p acc_usd < mysql_tables.sql

Готово! Насочвате браузъра към мястото: https://server/tinyacc/rep1.php?curr=bgn

Въвеждате си началните данни – например захранване на банковите сметки/карти и кеш за да се равните с банката си – аз го правя: Кеш — Сума — Други

И почвате да си въвеждате операциите ежедневно. Например теглите пари:  Кеш — сума — Разплащателна сметка.

Влагате пари в депозитната сметка: Деп. Сметка — Сума — Кеш

Операциите които не са осчетоводени (нямат флагчето) не се отчитат.

Салдата се смятат динамично – могат да се осчтоводяват или разсчетоводяват, както и да се редактират стари операции.

Може да си направите повече от една бази – например за различни валути (аз имам например една за Биткоин-ите или по-скоро мили биткоините). Има най-различни справки и графики. С програмката можете да си “спомните” кога сте купили това или онова и дали е изтекла гаранцията като търсите по тескт или част от текста.

Дано на някой му свърши работа.

Ransomware and Munich

In the lights of recent worldwide ransom-ware attacks- Wikipedia to computers in Windows world, I am wondering what happens to the process of migrating back from Linux (LiMux) to MS Windows in Munich City Government. As you probably know they managed to switch 15,000 desktop PCs from Windows to Linux and running fine for more than 10 years. Some local politician decided to go back after an offer from Microsoft to switch to Windows 10. Coincidentally Microsoft’s head quarter moved to Munich around the same time.

According to Microsoft, Windows 10 is immune to this particular attack. Will see when more of the corporate word moves to 10 and these attack gets more nasty.

My new Chromebook

 

I bought an ASUS Chromebook Flip 10.1″ Touchscreen Laptop (Quad Core, 4GB, 16GB eMMC) – Aluminum Chassis. I know it is like a dumb terminal (browser), but as a Linux fan my intention is to install Linux on it. Boy that thing is thin – love it.

  • With 10-finger touchscreen, ASUS Chromebook C100 can be flipped over from 0 to 360 degree, using it as a Chromebook, or a tablet.
  • Quad-Core ARM 1.8GHz processor with 4GB RAM, Wireless 802.11 A/C
  • Built with aluminum chassis, 10.1″ HD IPS Display 1280 x 800. HD Webcam
  • Run android apps
  • read more

    3.5 inch Touch Screen Display For Raspberry Pi 3

    Today Santa brought me a new 3.5″ display  for my Raspberry PI 3 and I am busy now installing it and making it to work. Mine came with a Protective Case + 3 x Heat sinks+ Touch Pen

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Assembling was a piece of cake. I had already running Raspbian on my Rpi using it mostly headless (via ssh), connected wirelessly to my LAN. When I powered Rpi on, the display went all white – so far so good. Time to install some software in order display to be recognised. Found a nice site with a wiki  http://www.waveshare.com/wiki/5inch_HDMI_LCD

    They are talking about 5″ display, but I decided to give it a try and see what happens with my 3.5″.

     

    
    #1. Downloaded the driver while ssh-ed to my Rpi using wget as root
    
    wget http://www.waveshare.com/w/upload/3/3d/LCD-show-160811.tar.gz
    
    #2. Extracted the files from the archive
    
    tar xzvf /boot/LCD-show-YYMMDD.tar.gz
    
    #3. Added couple of lines to /boot/config.txt file
    
    max_usb_current=1
    hdmi_group=2
    hdmi_mode=87
    hdmi_cvt 800 480 60 6 0 0 0
    
    #3. Ran install
    
    cd LCD-show/
    ./LCD35-show
    
    #4. Rebooted
    

    And it worked, even the touch. The specs say it is resistive touch screen, but surprisingly works with my finger too even not very precisely.

     

     

    This display is not a speed daemon (using a serial interface instead of Rpi’s video adapter on board), but it works if you don’t try to play a movie. Maybe I should’ve bought a model with HDMI connector like this, but is bigger and more expensive.

    Raspbian Linux used to be running LXDE desktop, but after an update earlier it started to offer the new desktop environment Pixel. It looks very polished and lightweight let’s hope the guys will improve it even further.

     

    LinuxCon 2016

    Tomorrow Linux will turn 25.

    There is a LinuxCon event in Toronto and I decided to visit it and see Linus’ keynote. What a disappointment was as per schedule it suppose to be like 10 minutes long. On top of that they asked me to register and pay $100. I will pay… but some other time (never). I am not interested in corporate drones there and their containers (most of the topics of the conference). VMware, HP, IBM and surprise Microsoft and Citrix (WTF). MS even has a keynote. Some memberships are $1100 – good luck with that. I don’t make my living with Linux or containers. That explains why Linux desktop is going nowhere – there is no money in it (for FSF). read more

    Measuring Temperature and Humidity with Raspberry Pi

    After I played with OLED display with Raspberry PI, the next logical step is to display more useful information on it.

    DHT22_AM2302

    I bought a sensor DHT22_AM2302 which is a Digital Temperature Humidity Sensor with serial interface.

    The device measures both temperature and humidity and you get the values in single poll.

    Connected GND to Rpi’s GND,

    Vcc to Rpi GPIO- pin 2 and finally

    Data to GPIO pin 8 (GPIO 14)

    rpi_T_H

    Little bit of coding in Python and using nice libraries written by Tony DiCola for Adafruit Industries and here is the result. read more