Tuesday, May 24, 2005

The i915-Debian Ordeal is over

Phew!!! Finally, the ordeal is over! For past few weeks I've been struggling to get my X window working on my new mobo, a.k.a. i915. Thanks a zillion to my mate, Amit, who endlessly answered all my stupid (and some intelligent) questions and always promptly gave me right pointers to go ahead. And not to forget numerous users who, over hundreds of mailing lists, have tried to solve the very same problem. Though I found no fixed solution, I gathered bits-n-pieces and BANG! It worked!

For those who don't have a clue of what I'm talking about and have come so far, I owe them an explanation. I installed Debian Sarge, a Linux distro, which didn't have support for my 915G chipset. Due to this, my graphical interface wasn't working, I then had just a console based linux. No so good. So I had to google & read manuals like hell to get things working, I virtually tried every possible combination and just before I was about to quit. Then I discovered something... a hidden script (yes, it was !@#$ing damn hidden since it was named 'rules' and who on earth was to guess that it's a script to install stuff!!!). I now have KDE 3.2 working at a SEXY 1280x1024 resolution! Here's the screenshot.

For people still struggling with how to get X working with Debian Sarge on i915, here's how I went about it. See if it rings any bells.

1. If you have i915, you probably will have SATA HDD, so install kernel 2.6, default installation will NOT install kernel 2.6. Type linux26 when installation prompt appears.

2. Get the sources for latest 2.6.x kernel (2.6.11, in my case) , compile it and install it.

3. Boot into this new kernel.

4. Get the sources for XFree 4.5.0. Build (hell, it takes about an hour and unending dependencies to get it built!) and install it. This might not be necessary, but this just what I did. You might want try skipping this step.

5. Get the xfree 4.5.0 debian packages from this site:
Install every single .deb you have, again, might not be necessary, don't know for sure.

6. Now comes the most tricky part...
I thought I was done, but to my disappointment it WASN'T! Hell, I came to cursing myself for opting for debian, because other distros like FC3 already support i915! Then I went reading every damn file I could. No readmes or files called install.sh, or alike. Just then file called 'rules' caught my attention.
When I opened it, I found following shebang:
#!/usr/bin/make -f
Holy Crap, I muttered!!! And some commands that looked like setting up things to get going! How on earth am I supposed to GUESS that a file called rules is to be used for installation!

7. dpkg-reconfigure for xserver-common & xserver-xfree86 got things rolling.
Another trick is that you won't find i915 in cards list yet. So select i810 and go ahead.

And this is how things went rolling for me!!! Phew, I know you are as exhausted reading this by now, as I was till yesterday!!!

BTW, one of the SEXIEST feature that I liked about debian is this... I wanted to install latest kernel and Amit suggested me to opt out of old method:
make menuconfig; make; make modules; make install; make modules_install
followed by few file movements and editing grub file. Just give one command, and it generate a debian package for your new kernel image! You then JUST have to install this package. The best part is you can even uninstall it CLEANLY whenever you want to! It works GREAT when you reinstall the base distro and you are spared the task of recompiling the kernel!
Just execute this from your source directory:
$ make-kpkg --initrd --rootcmd=fakeroot kernel_image

Things are not done yet, I've yet to get my sound working. Will spend today night doing so! Any pointers/help is MOST welcome!

Weekend Fun

A mate from Bombay, Harpreet, had come to Pune for a weekend. I enjoyed his company and believe same is true for him ;-) Due to scorching sun, we spent most of the time indoors. We watched Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith . Well, I haven't seen any of Star Wars earlier so initially some things went easily went past my brains... after a few minutes I got along... Not that I grasped the story but visual effects were just too good! They were as precise as they could! [No, please, it can never beat the grandeur of Matrix-1] But after 31 minutes (might vary person to person) it becomes DAMN monotonous :-S The end is a bit dangling, maybe because I haven't seen other parts. The only scene that I liked was the one where villian general (well, I am not good at reproducing names from that movie) pulls out all of his 4 hands and starts to prepare for the fight. The way he maneuvers 4 swords is amazing. I wouldn't recommend this movie to anyone, unless of course you are a die-hard Star Wars fan. I believe you can utilize this time in a much creative way (playing football, or reading some novel... GOD, I haven't posted about 2 novels I read some time back) .

Apart from this, on Sunday we played Infy vs. ROC (Rest Of the Club) match. Arguments on ground were to maximum, a disappointment to all, but game was enjoyable. Infy was leading by a goal when we concluded the game. All the time Infy had 4/5 forwards attacking, difficult to mark all of them. Besides, they had a great golie too! No doubt that Infy played well, and so did ROC.

Late through night, yesterday, I re-installed Debian Sarge, compiled complete Xfree 4.5.0 and am still fighting to get my X-server working! Tonight I'm going to try some differnt trick, after which I believe I won't have any stamina left to pursue making Debian+Xfree work on my system :-( Might move to some other distro.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Fun on weekend

The only thing that I missed last weekend was FOOTBALL :-(
But I don't repent it! For the fact that the reason to miss it was worth it! My cousins had flown down from Ahmedabad specially to spend the weekend with us! So, me, my younger bro, two cousins from Pune and 2 from Ahmedabad, in all we were a bunch of 6 young energetic people set to enjoy ourselves! We don't get such an opportunities often.

We met friday night and spend all the time fighting and arguing, until it was Saturday morning. It was then that we decided to go Mahabaleshwar in just one car (Honda City). The journey was fun, we booked room at Panchgini and headed to Mahabaleshwar. I visit that place VERY often and I should admit that the crowd has dwindled like anything! Yes, not many ppl and crowd wasn't so good either ;-(

On reaching there, we ate all the junk food we could, played some games and then came the MOST boring part... shopping!!! My sisters made me walk through market for nearly 2+ hours and bought almost nothing! We then returned to hotel, (things like this make me believe in GOD ;-) ! We again stuffed some food (it was called Chinese food) and resigned to our room. We played cards, chatted, took photos and then fell asleep watching TV at about 0230hrs Sunday. We woke up at 0800hrs, had breakfast and checked out of the hotel. Then we went back towards Mahabaleshwar for Mapro's Garden. We had the famous Grilled Giant Sandwich, clicked some fun photos and headed back to Pune. On the way back we stopped to click more FUN photos! On reaching Pune, we freshened up and then, some more shopping! (does GOD really exist???) Going to Pune Central on Sunday! Too much crowd! But I had no choice. Went there and again I had to stand/walk/run for nearly 2+ hours!!! My sisters wanted to ensure that Monday morning my legs shouldn't feel that they didn't play football this weekend. And they pretty much succeeded in doing so. After dinner, we went home, had some chat and slept with sad faces since we were to part in the morning!

All in all, it was a VERY SPECIAL weekend and I enjoyed it to fullest!

Now time for some photos:

1. Sexy fiery lotus at Mapro's Garden!

2. Another cute lotus at Mapro's Garden!

3. Fun on the way back home!

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Nana Patekar and Ajay Devgan

After a fews days I met Sush, I had gone to my Head Quarters (Satara, on 6th March). Since a couple of months lot of shootings were scheduled in Satara and many of Bollywood actors and actresses were out there! Since we (me & my bro) only had few hours of time, we could only meet bolly's two of the MOST NO-NONSENSE guys: Nana Patekar and Ajay Devgan. Nana was sooo cool and down to earth that he greeted my mommy (who, by now was visiting shotting set for the nth time) by her first name! He allowed us to click a few snaps, chatted casually what we are into and gleefully gave autographs, before biding us good-bye. Ajay, was running behind schedule for his shooting and so didn't have time for photo or autograph. But, I clicked his SEXY BMW SUV! Had we been there for couple of hours, we could have managed to get them! Apart from these, my parents met Bipasha Basu, 2 famous directors (I don't recall names), Kajol and few others. In fact parents were insisting me to come sooner so that we could meet all of them, but as you know, I'm least interested in most of the celebrities! Here are the snaps...

Nana & Me

Ajay's BMW

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

An appointment with dentist

Finally I failed to avoid the inevitable... not unexpected!!!
I had been avoiding the painful treatment of Root Canal... the treatment I DREAD MOST... until lately, maybe!
Since my surgery (called de-impaction) that I underwent in December (check out this interesting post on it), I have been promising everyone at home and my buddies that I'll soon get treated for root canal early Jan '05, as they were much concerned about my frequent tooth-ache complaints, and food restrictions that I imposed on myself, esp chocolates and sweets. But I always found excuses for not taking an appointment. Frustrated, my brother picked this up and took an appointment for 11th Wednesday 1900 hrs (i.e. yesterday)!!! Man, I was so nervous by the time I reached home that my mommy actually started laughing!!! I didn't react.
1845 hrs, I reached the clinic... power was out... secretly I was praying that I'll be sent back saying that too many appointments have piled up due to power cuts. GOD didn't answer my request. I was ushered into room and sat on the chair that MANY people (who have seen dentist) DREAD! 1911 hrs, Doc's wife started peeking into my mouth! What the #@$%! I thought the doc Sr. Suhas Waze who treated me earlier will take it up... I had so much faith in him... in fact it was my faith in him and not the pain that I was there! I got more nervous... But I felt a little relieved that my brother, who is studying dentistry, was besides me! She started her treatment... hmmm... seems pretty competent... but I wasn't confident... she started her drill... the sound of drill sent chills through my spine... For nearly half an hour I was stiff as a rock... expecting that it will pain suddenly taking me by surprise. But to my surprise I didn't experience slightest pain! For a moment I thought all this is just a dream, for my previous 3 root canal treatments, by some other dentist, have been HORRIBLY PAINFUL! I relaxed and she skillfully finished her treatment, at 2015 hrs I vouched that I'll take earliest possible appointment for another root canal treatment, 20th of this month! Later on I learnt that she is indeed an expert in root canal. I now rest my faith in her for root canal!
All the pain I endured by NOT going for treatment all these months out of fear was not worth it!

Yes, I know you are curious to know the details of my dentist...

Dr. Madhavi Vaze, B.D.S, Dental Surgeon (treated me for root canal)
Dr. Suhas Vaze, M.D.S, Maxillofacial Surgeon (treated me for de-impaction)
Dental & Oral Surgery Clinic
7, Geetai Sankil, Ideal Colony, Paud Road, Pune-38.
Timings: 9 am – 1 pm & 5 pm – 8 pm.
Hello: 2544 4776.

Looking forward to one more painless root canal.

I STRONGLY recommend these dentists for your dental treatments!