Ugly Qt Fonts on Fedora 13

Qt4 (KDE) applications like Chromium and VirtualBox have had ugly non-antialiased fonts, whereas Gtk2 (Gnome) applications look fine. I’ve found the fix – basically create a ~/.fonts.conf file with the following content, which turns on subpixel smoothing (installing freetype-freeworld did naff all):


I also changed the monospaced font in Chromium from 13pt Courier-New to 12pt Monospace, which interestingly enough made the fonts a bit bigger, and seems identical to my Firefox setup.

I’ve also upgraded the blog to WordPress 3.0.1 which went very smoothly – plugins/themes worked without even having to edit the CSS files. Doesn’t look like much as far as new features go for a major version release, I guess it got to 2.9.2 and they kinda had to move to 3.0 next!

I received the replacement fan for my graphics card today – the heatsink is so much bigger than the crappy one from Inno3D, and the fan is maybe 60mm not the 40mm crud from Inno3D. Temps have dropped 10c idle and 20c loaded (about 43/54c now). Looks like the same “TopCooler” model I have on my 8600GT. Not bad for six quid.

I’m now waiting for a replacement windscreen arm for my GPS, the sucker bit is broken off, so the ebay China guy is sending me a new one. Gotta give it to them, they know customer service over there. Not like an online store in the UK I ordered something from – I emailed them today asking where it was, only to be told they never sent it out as they’ve stopped selling them. Nice of them to bother telling me!

Update: I have changed the CSS for the blog to reduce the main text size from 16px (1em) to 14px, as it looks a bit huge in Chrome/IE8. It now looks fine in Opera and Firefox too.

GPS woes

I wasted most of yesterday morning fiddling with my GPS. It seems the car charger is knackered, or more accurately, the stupid centre-negative “pin-in-hole” socket I guess is iffy as sometimes the red charging LED comes on and sometimes the charging indicator comes on the screen but not the LED, that’s always breaking on these GPS’s, its such a stupid connection.

Anyway, luckily my GPS can also charge by its USB port so I can charge it via the PC, albeit rather slowly as the car adaptor is 6volts 1.5amps and USB is rated at 5v 0.5a, but I’ve ordered (from ebay!) a 5.5v 2a USB-to-cigarette socket charger so hopefully that will charge at least as fast as the car adaptor. I might order another car adaptor too, just in case its the adaptor not the socket.

Whilst I was playing around I thought I might as well upgrade the iGO 8.32 software and maps, well that’s where most of the time wasting came from! The latest software is build 96054 25th June, well that seems to work but is very flaky and crashes 50% of the time on startup. So I rolled back to 93112 8th June, which now works reliably, and is a fair bit more up-to-date than the 79297 2nd March version I was running. Then I tried to update the maps from Q3 2008 to Q1/Q2 2009, but neither the Navteq nor TeleAtlas maps will work for some reason, I think they’re too big or the files are corrupt as I kept getting out-of-memory errors and I/O errors, so for now I’m sticking with the older Navteq 2008 maps, although I did notice some missing roundabouts and such whilst driving around Limoges the other day, and the new N154 modifications aren’t on there either.

So I’ve backed up the 4Gb SDHC card to hard disk so I have a reliable disk image I know works and can even fit on my backup 2Gb SD card, as quite often the FAT16 filesystem goes screwy and you have to reformat.

The X-Factor is back, I had to laugh at Simon Cowell’s “we have changed the audition process to keep the idea fresh” bullshit, erm you’ve changed the auditions so you can charge entrance fees to audiences the size of Wembley for another month you lying bastard!

Update: I finally got some slightly newer Q1 2009 NavTeq maps working, I’m sticking with the 93112 build of the software though, having tried build 95797 24th June, which also didn’t work.

Been a while

Its been a while since my last post, so here’s an update.

I got back from my trip to Dover/Ramsgate, I can’t stand the hussle and traffic, the weather is shite too, it was freezing and rainy for three days. The new ferry was nice, but the crossing was slow and the sailing times are useless.

The new iGO 8.3.2 GPS software worked well – I like the way it pronounces the roads now instead of just “turn right”, and also as you’re approaching an exit you need to take it displays the lane signs, highlighting the one you need to be interested in.

I’ve now got my on-off cold back again, so starting my fourth month of being ill, I tell you next winter I’m going to Spain or wearing a facemask or perhaps living in a bubble like Michael Jackson!

I got my new Sky+ box and found that you can’t record/pause etc without a subscription, which is a shame, glad I didn’t buy a load of satellite cable now. I’ve got a SkyHD remote but apparently you can reprogram it to work in Sky+ mode.

I’ve been playing with some Nessus stuff today, as well as VirtualBox – with 2.2.0b1 they still haven’t fixed the Solaris guest additions, the mouse works now but screen resizing still crashes.

I finally got paid for an insurance claim I made about three years ago, so well done for promptness you Allianz arseholes. I also phoned up to renew my RAC breakdown etc; and they actually tried to sell me a 99ukp extra on a policy that only costs 66ukp!

Happy Birthday Mum

It was Mum’s birthday yesterday, Pip & Co and I went over for a little party which was lovely. We got Mum (and Dad) a jacuzzi.

Today I’ve been playing with the new version of iGO 8 on my GPS – 8.3.2, which meant more setting up of maps, speedcam databases and backing up of favourites/POI’s etc. I’ve got it working nicely now, with the March09 software and November08 maps, so can test it out when we go to England – I’m taking a backup SD card with 8.0.0 just in case! 😉

Update: I found that you’re supposed to be able to import Google Earth and Google Maps .kml files into iGO8, but after about two hours of trying to figure out where in the directory structure to put them and using various converters and even corrupting the FAT16 filesystem and reformatting the SDHC card twice, I gave up!

Update 2: it seems version 2.2.0 beta1 of VirtualBox has been released with the new feature of hardware-accelerated 3D via OpenGL on Linux guests amongst other changes.


I backed up my GPS last night by simply copying the files from my 4Gb SDHC card to a 2Gb SD card, it just abouts fits with all the applications and France+UK maps. The only things that seem to be missing are settings, but favourites are still there.

I’ve been playing around with the latest versions of Nessus and Tennable Security Center lately, SC really adds functionality to Nessus, its not simply a web frontend. What’s also nice is that even though its not opensource, it still uses open standards for things, so you could modify it yourself – config files are simple text or XML, images are just PNG’s, the scripts are Perl and PHP and the DHTML/AJAX uses the Yahoo library!

M&D’s ADSL got upgraded and after teething troubles (the DSLAM had the wrong mac address info, which seems to be the usual problem/excuse with our ISP) the speed has gone up from about 2400/130kbps to 5600/810kbps, so not only more than doubled the download, but also a hefty upload speed.

Update: just figured out what is loud in my new PC – I previously thought it was the PSU fan, but it turns out to be the 1Tb hard disk, it vibrates like a motherfucker and is constantly spun-up, unlike in my fileserver where the hard disks spin down all the time rather annoyingly. I guess you can’t have it both ways.

Just watched Russell Howard Live, which was rather disappointing as I think he’s great on Mock The Week. It really dragged on with his very similar life observations, and reruns of his old MTW gags.

Update 2: I’ve been backing up my desktop machine onto my fileserver today using rsync. Strangely enough on the server side you can exclude directories so the client can’t copy them, however on the client side you can’t exclude directories from being deleted.

For example I have a backup directory on the fileserver (client) which contains one more “config” directory than the corresponding backup directory on the desktop (server). If I run rsync the config directory will get deleted on the fileserver as it doesn’t appear on the desktop. The only solution being to move the config directory outside of backup directory whilst syncing.

Permissions seem a bit odd too, if there’s a file on the server that is not world-readable, then it cannot by synced to the client, despite the username/ID’s being the same. Same goes for directories that aren’t world-executable.