Geez, it's already February.
Time flies when you're doing nothing. Ugh, I went into LiveJournal after all this time...After logging in, I was greeted by a long list of popular Russian journals and tons and tons of whitespace. Like 75% of the screen's width was empty. Now I remember why I hang out on Dreamwidth. At least they didn't force the new, horrid friends page on everyone yet. The key word being "yet". I remember putting in a lot of time to get my layout the way I wanted it; that's one of the benefits of having a paid/permanent account — you can customize stuff. Anyway, my LJ friends list is pretty much empty except for the RSS feeds I subscribe to. I just wish I had the same account level on Dreamwidth that I have on LJ. I could use some more icons on DW. Also, I noticed that LJ got rid of their secure login server. Previously, you could go to an HTTPS site to login so your password wouldn't be transmitted where people could intercept it. Going to that HTTPS site redirects you to the regular HTTP site and there's no choice to log in securely. Considering Firefox didn't throw a fit when I went to the HTTPS site, their certificate must still be valid. I didn't just want to talk about that...it just turned out that way when I had to go to LJ to make sure I had the same icons on both LJ and Dreamwidth.
Um, I managed to get a few bucks from doing some quick work on a computer. Every six months or so, someone brings me their computer to do preventative maintenance. This time, it took only about an hour. She keeps the outside of her computer surprisingly clean, so there's only hard drive cleaning to do. (I managed to clean 4.3 GiB of junk on its ~38.4 GiB hard drive.) Her computer is pretty old (it turns nine years old in April), but it keeps chugging along, so I keep maintaining it. Maintenance is a lot cheaper than waiting for some catastrophic failure. The only hardware change made was maxing out the RAM in 2010, so the hard drive is the next likely failure. Also, at the rate she's filling up her hard drive, she will completely fill her hard drive in two years and four months despite maintenance. (Why yes, I actually track hard drive space free for computers I maintain, though I do it more to track how much junk I've deleted.)
Oh, and my Kubuntu machine decided it was going to nuke my custom kernel. (Or that's what I thought, until I rebooted and it still used my custom kernel. The Ubuntu kernel says it's 3.5.0-23 when it's 22.214.171.124, so it seems like everything Ubuntu comes out with in the 3.5 series will have a lower version [to Grub2] than a custom kernel.) At least MariaDB came out with an update, so the updater won't keep trying to erase MariaDB and replace it with MySQL. Like it did before, the updater told me that there was one amount of updates, but then it actually downloads far more. Then again, it says the kernel update was about 2 KiB, and there's no way the kernel is that small. Also, the notification system told me about there being updates twice: once before I opened the updater, and again when the updater was downloading. I guess that's because the GUI for updating and the updating guts are decoupled. The GUI can't just tell the notifier, "dude, I got this." There's a bunch of different kinds of notifiers and updating interfaces, so I doubt any of them would talk to each other. It would also be nice if it could download updates in the background (especially the non-destructive ones, i.e., the ones that don't require removing other things), and do that without having to supply the password...basically what Windows does. If I walk away from my computer for an hour or so, I'd rather come back and find it has updates that are ready to install than have to wait ten minutes for them to download. I don't even know if that's possible.
Anyway, on my kernel, I finally shrunk it down some more. This latest custom kernel uses 337 KiB less memory and 299.5 KiB less hard drive space than the stock kernel. It also boots 2-3 seconds faster. Also, I just noticed that Ubuntu is kinda far back as far as kernel versions go; they're on the 3.5 series when the latest is 3.7. 3.5 is already at its end of life and only gets "unofficial support" (security updates, I assume). My custom kernel is 126.96.36.199; the stock kernel is the same version, but it's labelled as 3.5.0-22.34. I'd like to have the latest in the 3.7 series (3.7.5), but I'm not that smart at all this custom kernel stuff. The big thing is the firmware required for my GPU to work properly with the 3.5.x kernel may not work with the 3.7.x kernel. I'm fairly certain that the rest of the hardware, including the wireless, is supported in the 3.7.x kernel without any extra junk needed. By the time Ubuntu switches to 3.7,
they'll have a 3.9 I'll have my kernel configuration perfected so I won't have to worry about the hardware settings when moving my kernel configuration file over.