New Logitech gaming keyboard G19 and other gear!

Logitech > Gaming > PC Gaming > Mice + Keyboards > G19 Keyboard for Gaming.


In the runup to CES, Logitech just announced a new G-series keyboard the G19, and other goodies. I am not looking forward to this one as much as the G13 and I wont be replacing my G15 anytime soon, but its still really sexy. The color LCD screen is sweet, opens up new avenues for game info and other apps.

They also announced a new variation on the G9, he G9x

Logitech G35 surround sound headset
Also new is the G35 headset. It offers virtual 7.1 surround field and lots of cool buttons! My main question is alwways how comfortable they are with prolonged use. Read more at Ubergizmo


You know I still havent seen the G13 in any shops here in the Netherlands yet!

Social Searching for specific subjects

A frequent strategy I use this days is to leverage several social web sources to search for specific subjects.

I then use RSS and Google Reader to consolidate the results into a single view

For example, this week I am working with Microsofts “Hyper-V” virtualisation technology.

I start with Google Blog Search

which produces a search-results RSS feed:

Then I go with Twitter:

And Friendfeed:

Another good one to add would be social bookmark sites such as

So in Google Reader, I created a folder called “Hyper-V” and added all three feeds:

ScreenHunter_ Jan. 04 21.13_002 by you.

The result is a very neat consolidated list of posts, dynamically updating all the time, based on the search term.

ScreenHunter_ Jan. 04 21.14_003 by you.

Goodreads | 2 reviews of Microsoft Resource Kits

Microsoft  Windows  2000 Server Resource Kit (It-Resource Kit) Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Resource Kit by Microsoft Corporation

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This remains still one of the most in-depth and complete collections of material on Windows server. Many of the basic concepts and design of Active Directory, basic TCP/IP technologies, and much more, are discussed in great technical detail, and it remains an extremely valuable reference source for me, even for Windows 2003, and I bet for 2008 also.

I also have the 2003 resource kit, but they cover different aspects of the sever product. I don’t know if there is a technical reference from MS on Windows server that equals the ground covers in this kit.

I recently through out many of my 2000′ books, but these will remain on the shelf for a long time.

View all my reviews.

Microsoft  Windows Server(TM) 2003 Resource Kit Microsoft Windows Server(TM) 2003 Resource Kit by Microsoft MVPs and Partners

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is basically a bundled collection of books that are also available separately. It contains some of the most in-depth books available on Windows server, including the very excellent “Windows Internals 4th edition” by Mark Mark Russinovich. Also the Troubleshooting and Performance guide are extremely good and in-depth.

This collection goes a lot farther than just about anything a Windows professional will have come across in MS course material. It is meant mostly for enterprise administrators as many of the skills needed to use the knowledge of these books lend themselves particularly well the large-scale enterprise environment.

View all my reviews.

New Camera: Canon G9

So my trusty xsus 70 camera was stolen just before we went on holiday. It was most likely grabbed right out of my luggage at Schiphol.

For a while now, I had been playing with the idea of getting a new, somewhat more sophisticated camera. A DSLR would be a little over the top, but a camera where I could at least manually ajust things like Shutter speed and the like, should be possible.

And indeed it was. The Canon G9 (review at is just about the best “point and shoot” camera you can get. It has a feauture set pretty close to a proper DSLR but only a about a hundred euros more than your average Digital Ixus, and the like.

Picture 11 by you.

Picture 12 by you.

Its gonna take a while for me to learn how to use this properly. Already I have learnt a lot more than I knew about Focal Lengths, Apertures, ISO valies, F-numbers, etc.

Some pictures I have made so far:

Picture 128 Picture 125 Picture 124 Picture 123 Picture 121 Picture 069 Picture 104 Picture 116 Picture 106 Picture 005 Picture 031 Picture 006 Test Movie  Picture 016 Picture 005 Picture 002 Picture 001 IMG_0172 IMG_0224 IMG_0441 IMG_0445 IMG_0446 Breakfast IMG_0453 IMG_0455
Proud of this one, my first high-speed shot:

IMG_0224 by you.


When you touch that server you touch me

They turned off the HPSIM and general management and alerting server this morning, or at least, unplugged it, cause it was causing this huge network spike at a remote site

I know for a fact that no one besides myself knows what it is exactly that machine does, as its only usefull to me and what I do.

That doesnt mean it isnt explained in the server list in Sharepoint that I made and painstakingly try to keep up to date, that no one bothers to ever look at.

And of course no one bothered to ask during the day what exactly the impact is that they unplugged the server.

I mean, who cares about hardware and remote monitoring of servers anyway. It is, after all, only the most basic part of my job.

That made me feel really appreciated.

HPSIM was reinstalled a few weeks go by one of my collegues. When I explained it took me 2 days to set it up last time I installed it, he was suprised.

I will admit, it doesnt need to take that long. But it was new software to me at the time, and I was carefull, and ran into some awkward service account issues.

Its a very messy collection of software, basicly, so you need to be carefull and precise.

I read the manuals first.

I ended up needing 3 different service accounts. With different levels of rights and access. 

He reinstalled HPSIM in about 1 hour. Its his way, he loves to impress with how fast he can do things.

I havent logged on to it in the meantime, because my time was needed elsewhere for the last few weeks. Build activities that go first. Project. Bids. Money.

I warned them in a long email 2 weeks ago, that no one was now doing any active systems administration. No one was keeping an eye on things. No one was cuting the grass.

Fast forward to this morning…

So, I cant dispute that HPSIM or something on that server killed that sites 2mbit WAN line for an hour, daily, between 10 and 11.

I went in over the ILO to have a look, after I asked them to at least plug -that- back in.

HPSIM service wouldnt start, as it couldnt authenticate its domain service account, cause it had no network. This was expected.

What wasn’t expected, was the fact that it was using this collegues domain admin account to start.

And so was the OpenSSH service.

And so was the Sofware update repository service.

I curse myself for not having reinstalled it myself, for one. And I curse myself for not having managed that server myself the past few weeks.

They ask me now, wtf was that server doing? I honestly dont know. I havent managed it for the past few weeks, due to me being allocated to build activities, as they well know.

I hate it. I hate the fact that I dont know.

Even though I have no need to feel responsible, I so very much do. This server was mine, it did this on my watch, at least that is how it feels.

I cant be sure what caused the network spike, and I will never know because they wont let me plug the server back into the network.

This weekend I will reinstall HPSim on a different server. A server that I had racked as spare, for this exact kind of scenario.

It will be reintalled slowly, carefully, with the appropriate documentation at hand, as I did last time.

It will be stable. It will be secure. It will be managed.

It will be beautifull.

And I am not gonna let anyone else on that server. If it ever misbehaves again, they can hold me personally acountable, I want them to, god knows I want them to.

There is only one person in my department with a sense of responsibility for our enviroment.

There is only one person in my department who actually cares things are done correctly.

Every time I place my trust in another technical person, I am dissapointed.

No one else is touching that server from now on.

Happy Sysadmin day.

Of Mice and … keyboard

My Microsoft Elite keyboard/mouse setup has served me well for a number of years, but recently the keyboard started becoming a bit erratic.

I decided to pimp my system with some new hardware.

Logitech G15 Gaming Keyboard

I love the display, which has some pre-customized WoW settings in there. I also downloaded a G15 Teamspeak addon that shows who is speaking on Teamspeak, very cool. The keys are very pleasant on the fingers, and the keyboard has some special macro buttons down the side, which come with quite powerfull macro/scripting software.

The backlit lighting is very nice. Though I prefer the blue that the G11 model has.


For a new mouse, I got the Microsoft Sidewinder.

Its very nice, but after playing around with Lia’s new MX1000, I think I might actually prefer that for the feel.
The Sidewinder is pretty good though, though it is a bit bulky. It comes with weights that you can insert into the side, which is kinda smart. I went for the max load. It also comes with a cable block to keep the cable at the right managable length. You can customise the buttons, but not the buttons at the top which I thought was a bit weak. The buttons at the top control on-the-fly DPI switching which can be usefull, the little diplay shows what DPI the mouse is set to.

Because I am rather jellous of Lia’s new MX1000, I decided to get the MX Revolution for my work.

Logitech MX Revolution

Now the MX Revolution is, I guess, the successor to Lia’s MX1000.

Logitech MX1000

Now while that is true, let me say that these are in fact two very different beasts. Lia doesnt like the second scroll wheel for example and while I dont mind it, I cant blame her.

Estetically they are both gorgeous and very well designed, and fit in your hard totally naturally, supporting the thumb very well.

The revolution does a funny thing with the main scroll wheel, it actually adapts the way it rolls during scrolling,  on the fly, depending on the kind of page you are on. You feel it physically switch between the common “clicks” and the “smooth” mode that some Microsoft mice have standard.

Anyhow, to conclude, I am very happy with my new purchases, and am sure they are gonna serve me very well. And at work, I am totally pimpin of course 😉


Got Logitech Quickcam Orbit AF

I already had the Orbit MP, which I was quite happy with.
But I recently discovered that Skype supported what they are calling “High Quality Video”. Now this only works on select Logitech hardware, but not the MP version of the Orbit.

I am kinda drooling over the posible pictuer quality this offers though, and considdering me and Lia’s relationship is currently very heavily reliant on Skype, it makes sense we get the most possible out of it.

Review of Skype HQ Video 1
Review of Skype HQ Video 2

So as a present to myself for my recent promotion, I bought the AF version on Saterday, here they are side by side:

Zoom In

Left is the MP, right is the AF version.

AF stands for Auto Focus, and the feature works quite well. Its got a far better lense, made by Carl Zeiss, which is another cool branding victory for them.

 Logitech Quickcam Sphere AF


Now I was gonna give my MP to Lia, but we actually want to do High Quality Video both ways, so she is now considdering getting the Pro 9000

Anyhow, I am very happy with it so far. Its capable of very high quality streaming video, and although its only a 2mp sensor, it can extrapolate to 8pm resolution.


Zoom in to full res: 3264px × 2448px

High-Def test video of me:





Datacenter Move post 4

Youtube videos are worth a thousands words, so I will let them do the talking.

Progress TCR Move May27 part 1 (the old location)

Progress TCR Move May27 part 2 (the new location)

What Mustafa thinks of IBM rackmount kits:

And some pics from the last 3 days:
(Click for larger versions)

IBM xseries 336, bout 3 years old now

ServeRAID 6M controller (in the PCI slot bay). Its IBM branded but its basically an Adaptec.
This comes out of one of the 2 xseries 336 servers that, together with the EXP400 shelf, served as a Windows 2003 cluster. The ServeRAID controllers are needed to provide failover control of the shared disk shelf.

Mainboard of an xseries 336, with the PCI card bay/thing removed.  The blue bracket at the top is where usually an RSA-II management card would be sitting, but this one doesnt have one 😦

ServeRAID 6M removed from PCI bay of the 336 server

The rack is slowly emptying. I remember when I was building it all up, 3 years ago! Check it out

Installing windows on an IBM xseries 336. Its been a while. I noticed the IBM Serveguide CD has a few more options now.

Picture I needed to have to illustrate where to connect everything.

Ready to move to new location


Not the most ideal way of moving servers, but its better than nothing. At least they are softer  here than in the back of the car.

Richard, our project manager, trying to get more work in.

Temporary cabling 😉

Its slowly growing

They are not done with the rack interconnects, damnit. I cant finish my patching like this.

Our new firewall cluster

I love the blue glow of the console. Kinda wierd to have that out-of-place IBM in there, squashed between the HP.s.  The cable rail for the server is different than HP aswell, so that will be fun to cable.

Moved some servers around, getting to our final config now.

WAN comms rack in the new location

LANcoms rack in the new location

Khalid on servicedesk duty

Gertjan is helping us decomission


Mustafa hard at work decomissioning servers

A lot of servers where decommissioned today, these are all basically being scrapped.