How to make 6 months of your life vanish

I own a mobile 500GB USB disk manufactured by Lacie and use it to put all my photos, so that I can both save disk space on my laptop and can easily share photos with someone else. A few months ago, my girlfriend bought a new laptop with Microsoft Vista included and yesterday, while I was busy with mine, she asked me if she could have a look at our photos.

Of course I said yes.

Lacie 500G mobile disks are pre-formated as FAT32. A nice filesystem as any OS can use it read/write, and it’s rather fast if you don’t need to manage access rights. But the vendor has decided to ship its drive with an auto-launch first-time wizard reformatting your disk as NTFS in order to, in their own words, optimize the drive. Linux don’t care about auto-launch things but Vista just does.

Of course, my girlfriend knows nothing about FAT32, NTFS and what’s behind the words “drive optimization”.

Hit next… hit next… hit next…


The good thing is that I’ve made two backup DVDs of the photos I’ve made during the first 2 years of my son. But I’ve lost all the photos since then (he’s now 2 years and a half). I’ve also tried to recover photos from the disk (thanks to photorec), but only recovered a very minor part of all my photos.

In essence, I’ve lost 6 months of photos, including birth photos of my little girl (now 3 months old).

I’m happy I’ve made some backups, but should make them more often and especially after exceptional situations like… your child birth. A good rule of thumb for managing personal photos is “have two copies of your photos anytime”.

Posted in Life. 13 Comments »

My new french blog

I’ve completed the creation of my new blog in french (which was rather easy thanks to wordpress import/export functions and the unlimited number of blogs). The link is

From now on, I’ll post only english articles in this blog and only french ones in the new one. I still don’t know if I’m gonna translate all articles I’m gonna write, so both blogs may look slightly different in terms of content.

The benefit of doing this is I’m still referenced on planetmandriva while I can now be referenced in and various french-only aggregations (like there may be on the mandriva wikik one day…). Moreover, my posts get more readable as french-speaking persons don’t have to scroll all the way down to access the french content.

It’s pity wordpress doesn’t support multi-lingual posts as other blog websites do, but it can easily be workarounded doing what I’ve just done.

Pay to get bugfixes ?

Yes, you’ve heard it : now you have to pay to get bugfixes… What I’m talking about ? Not Mandriva, of course, nor even linux ! I’m talking about Award, AMI and Phoenix, famous BIOS makers.
Most people know BIOS are generally buggy crappy pieces of code (even if I admit the job isn’t easy given space constrainst). So like in any piece of software, there are bugs.
If you seek help to update your BIOS, MOST pages on the internet will lead you to this page (who talked about google poisonning ?). Look at those smiling people on the upper right hand corner of the homepage : they’re all happy to have paid approx. 30$ to get a BIOS with less bugs and be able to run their shiny brand new version of MS Vista (why do people love to install crappy softs ? is it some kind of masochism for geeks ?)…
If you don’t believe it, you’ll probably end up like me : on google desperately seeking for free BIOS updates and reading this ton of posts from people selling BIOS updates themselves (they’ve bought it from the previously mentionned website…) I’m pretty sure people will start selling their second-hand BIOS updates on ebay sooner or later.
I was about to install linuxbios but remembered the computer I just wanted to upgrade was my girfriend’s and I wasn’t 100% sure about what problems I could have run into…
Finally, after googling around, I found some support from the motheboard vendor, but it was already late and I abandonned my quest for the bugfree BIOS. I’ll do it when I’ve more free time.

Been a while

Been a while since I posted something here.

I’m going to be a father in two months, so it takes a lot of my time (I have meetings almost every evening at the maternity home). I’ve even seen my baby in 3D last week ūüėÄ

For the linux part, I mostly follow what is going on thanks to all my subscriptions (RSS feeds and mailing lists), but does not really have time to contribute.

However, there’s some interesting things I can tell you :

– First there’s a lot of discussions about the new Mandriva websites structure and particularly the new wiki. Cooker and ex-development wikis contents have been migrated, but a good structure has still to be found. Moreover, the Mandriva club content is still to be migrated which is going to be a big job.

– There’s a new ktorrent release and I’ve build a rpm for Mandriva 2007. I didn’t backport it from cooker because I don’t have cooker installed (yet). So I just took the 2007 src.rpm and rebuilt it. I had to change quite a lot of things to the spec file, but it now builds correctly. The problem is that I didn’t follow the normal way of rebuilding this package (first on cooker, then backport). So I can give it to you on request, but do not want to have it online for the moment.

– kqemu has been released as GPL and at the same time, thanks to awilliamson, I discover a new virtualization program is in the wild : virtualbox. Sounds good to install a new cooker system for development !

Cela fait bien longtemps que je n’ai pas post√© quelquechose ici.

Je vais √™tre papa dans deux mois, donc cela me prend beaucoup de temps (j’ai des r√©unions √† la maternit√© chaque soir). J’ai m√™me vu mon b√©b√© en 3D la semaine derni√®re ūüėÄ

Pour la partie linux, j’ai principalement suivit ce qu’il se passait gr√Ęce √† toutes mes souscriptions (fils RSS et listes de distributions), mais je n’ai pas vraiment le temps de contribuer.

Néanmoins, il y a quelques choses intéressantes que je peux vous dire :

– D’abord, il y a beaucoup de discussions √† propos de la structure du nouveau site Mandriva et particuli√®rement le nouveau wiki. Le contenu des wikis cooker et ex-development ont √©t√© migr√©s, mais une bonne structure doit toujorus √™tre trouv√©e. De plus, le contenu du club Mandriva doit encore √™tre migr√© ce qui sera un gros travail.

– Il y a une nouvelle version de ktorrent et j’ai construit un rpm pour Mandriva 2007. Je ne l’ai pas backport√© de cooker parceque je n’ai pas cooker install√© (encore). Donc j’ai juste prise le src.rpm de la 2007 et je l’ai reconstruit. J’ai du changer pas mal de choses dans le fichier spec, mais il se construit correctement maintenant. Le probl√®me est que je n’ai pas suivi la voie normale pour reconstruire un paquetage (d’abord cooker, puis backport). Alors je peux vous le donner sur simple demande, mais je ne veux pas qu’il se retrouve en ligne pour le moment.

– kqemu est pass√© en GPL et au m√™me moment, gr√Ęce √† awilliamson, j’ai d√©couvert qu’un nouveau programme de virtualisation existe : virtualbox. √áa semble sympa pour installer un nouveau syst√®me avec cooker pour le d√©veloppement !

What’s up ?

Thanks to Olivier Blin (blino), we’re now aware of what Mandriva 2007 will look like (for most of its parts). Indeed, I read three very interesting posts :

My girlfriend resurected my desktop ! I’ve tried several days to power it up without success and concluded it was a BIOS problem, but as soon as she tried, it booted up ! I’ve updated it with the lastest cooker packages yesterday (there’s only cooker on it) and had several things to arrange manually, not really a smooth upgrade :

  • Xorg 7.1 couldn’t be installed without removing first x11-xorg-server 6.9 package
  • All the usual mouse, keyboard and video drivers weren’t installed (it’s probably a consequence of the first point)
  • I had to remove all my java stuff because of the new gcj7 and couldn’t reinstall azureus
  • A bug in RPM (not urpmi : the upstream RPM) prevents some java packages to be removed smoothly : in their postun script they have to run one or two utilities which are uninstalled first. I’ve understood there’s no mean to tell RPM to remove this package at the end of the process.
  • There’s no more mozilla-firefox-fr package but didn’t check if my firefox switched to english.
  • nvidia proprietary drivers (package coming from PLF) don’t work : all the characters are displayed incorrectly. I had to switch to “nv”.

Unfortunately, I found no time to report bugs and test the various packages installed, but will probably do so in the near future. I hope all the “upgrade” bugs will be fixed when upgrading from 2006, but I’m quite confident they will.

Gr√Ęce √† Olivier Blin (blino), nous sommes maintenant au courant de ce √† quoi ressemblera Mandriva 2007 (en grande partie). En effet, j’ai lu trois articles tr√®s int√©ressants :

Ma copine a ressuscit√© mon ordinateur de bureau ! J’ai essay√© plusieurs jours de le d√©marrer sans succ√®s et j’en ai conclus qu’il s’agissait d’un probl√®me BIOS, mais d√®s qu’elle a essay√©, il a d√©marr√© ! Je l’ai mis √† jour avec les derniers paquetages cooker hier (il n’y a que cooker dessus) et j’ai eu plusieurs choses √† arranger manuellement, pas vraiment une mise √† jour fluide :

  • Xorg 7.1 ne pouvait pas s’installer sans supprimer le paquetage x11-xorg-server 6.9 avant
  • Tous les pilotes habituels : souris, clavier et viedo n’√©taient pas install√©s (c’est probablement une cons√©quence du premier point)
  • J’ai du enlever tous mes trucs java √† cause du nouveau gcj7 et je n’ai pas pu r√©installer azureus
  • Un bug dans RPM (pas urpmi : le RPM qui provient de emp√™che quelques paquetages java d’√™tre d√©sinstall√© sans probl√®mes : dans leur script postun ils doivent lancer un ou deux utilitaires qui sont d√©sinstall√©s en premier. J’ai compris qu’il n’y a pas de mani√®re d’indiquer √† RPM d’enlever ce paquetage √† la fin du processus.
  • Il n’y a plus de paquetage mozilla-firefox-fr mais je n’ai pas v√©rifi√© si mon firefox avait bascul√© en anglais
  • les pilotes nvidia propri√©taires (le paquetage provient du PLF) ne marchent pas : tous les caract√®res sont affich√©s incorrectement. J’ai du basculer vers “nv”.

Malheureusement, je n’ai pas trouv√© le temps de rapporter les bugs et de tester les diff√©rents paquetages install√©s mais je le ferais probablement dans un avenir proche. J’esp√®re que tous les bugs de “mise √† jour” seront r√©solus quand on met √† jour depuis 2006, mais je suis plut√īt confiant.

Vue du danube

Vue du danube

Originally uploaded by yohonet.

Hugin is just awesome

Hugin est tout simplement génial

Some news

I'm gonna recap what I've done since my last post :

  • I bought my new flat !
  • I went to hungary for almost a week : awesome !
  • Very funny guys stole the four wheels of my car ūüė¶

As you can see, I've been very busy and had no time to follow cooker, post on my blog or even read my mail until this morning. I've even subscribed to interesting mailing lists : "kdepim" (mostly talking about the future of PIM under KDE) and "edos open tools" (talking about packaging issues on a high level) but had no time to follow them.

Hopefully, I'll be able to read my mail today and probably blogpost in the next few days, so stay tuned !


Je vais récapituler ce que j'ai fait depuis mon dernier post :

  • J'ai acheté un nouvel appartement !
  • Je suis parti en Hongrie pendant presque une semaine : génial !
  • Des types très marrants m'ont volé les quatres roues de ma voiture ūüė¶

Comme vous pouvez le voir, j'ai été assez occupé et je n'ai pas eu le temps de suivre cooker, de poster sur mon blog ou même de lire mon mail jusqu'à ce matin. J'ai même souscrit à des listes de diffusion intéressantes : "kdepim" (parlant principalement du futur du PIM sous KDE) et "edos open tools" (parlant de la réalisation de paquets à un haut niveau) mais je n'ai pas eu le temps de les suivre.

Heureusement, je serais capable de lire mon mail aujourd'hui et probablement de poster sur mon blog dans les prochains jours, donc continuez à me suivre !