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The Mailbag

HELP WANTED : Article Ideas

Send tech-support questions, Tips, answers and article ideas to The Answer Gang <tag@lists.linuxgazette.net>. Other mail (including questions or comments about the Gazette itself) should go to <gazette@linuxgazette.net>. All material sent to either of these addresses will be considered for publication in the next issue. Please send answers to the original querent too, so that s/he can get the answer without waiting for the next issue.

Unanswered questions might appear here. Questions with answers--or answers only--appear in The Answer Gang, 2-Cent Tips, or here, depending on their content. There is no guarantee that questions will ever be answered, especially if not related to Linux.

Before asking a question, please check the Linux Gazette FAQ to see if it has been answered there.


Wed, 7 Nov 2001 00:41:46 +0200
hakan bilginer (hakanb from vestelnet.com)


I wonder if it's possible to make a radius server on linux to authenticate the users on a remote mssql server 7.0 database.we use ms radius server and want to try linux.and if it's possible which radius server would you recommend for this job?

Thank you

Hakan Bilginer

HTML/CSS question - useful for dicussion

27 Nov 2001 23:31:32 +0000
mike (mike from redtux.demon.co.uk)

I am currently trying to write html which will insert page breaks for printing, which is is CSS2, and just happens to be part of css2 not implemented in mozilla.

Is any anyone aware of any solutions to this using HTML/CSS1

neighbour table overflow

Tue, 13 Nov 2001 10:53:35 -0500 (EST)
Ian Berry (ian from wunh.org)

Hi all,

I just set up a nice little p120 with 2-NICs and RedHat7.0 for my mom and it is working great except for one thing which you have spoken of before, the "neighbour table overflow" message being printed out to the console.

In a response to a letter from James Zhuang, Heather spoke of how ifcfg-lo might be missing or that lo might not be up but on my system, ifcfg-lo is there and appears correct and lo is up and running. Also JimD mentioned that pump might be screwing up the loopback configuration and I am running that as my dhcp client; how might i remedy this problem? I'd be happy to provide more system information if it would help or if you have any other ideas on where i might look i would appreciate it.


-- Ian Berry

Old symptom, maybe a new problem. Anybody out there encountering this too? Even better if you've got a Tip sized answer. -- Heather

Ethernet: Slow download, fast upload

Mon, 12 Nov 2001 17:47:29 +0100
Matthias Posseldt (matthi from gmx.li)

Hi all there,

I recently bought a OVIS Live FSH8R 10/100 MPS autosensing switch and a Davicom 9102 network card (dmfe.c) (They deliver Linux drivers on disk!!) So I cabled all together and connected to a friends notebook. From my Apache server he can download with speeds up to 9 MB/s, that's what I expected. Now when I download files (big files to measure the throughput) from his Apache (on Windows ;-( or via smbmount/Samba, I'll just get a rate of 2,5 MB/s. With iptraf (an ip traffic analyser, it's very good, IMO) I get a lot of big packets (1400-1500 bytes), which are the data packages. But my network interface also receives/sends alot small (<100 bytes) packages. These are confirmation packages, I assume.

Both network cards run at 100 Mps, changing switch ports did not help. The switch has only two cables connected.

So, nice story ;-). The question: Why can't I get a fast downlink, but only a fast uplink.

Thanks, Matthias


Diablo under Wine

18 Nov 2001 13:42:13 -0600
Charles R. Tersteeg (aa0na from arrl.net)

I read your article in Published in issue 71 of Linux Gazette October 2001 where Jefferson said Diablo ran fine under Wine at LWE. Which Diablo? I or II. I have II running fine, but I can't find anyone who has Diablo I running.


I really don't recall whether it was I or II - but it was the honest to goodness CD from the Windows software package.

It was in the TRANSGAMING.com booth; Transgaming makes ActiveX extensions for WINE, and with those extensions, many games run fine. -- Heather

Tnx Ben & Breen

Thu, 1 Nov 2001 19:47:22 -0700
William Laing (wmlaing from home.com)

Ben & Breen
Thank you people who offered me help on loading modules, into the 6.2 system I havent got it right yet, but learnt something for sure. I dumped the system and will start from scratch again with a different card.
Thanks agn bill

re Nov issue - Dennis Field article

Thu, 8 Nov 2001 10:21:37 -0500
Harold A. J. Isaacs (chorales from ioip.com)

Would you kindly pass on to Mr Field that "Lunux Canada" seems to have exactly what he is looking for. It is not free, but moderately (compared with MS) priced. Certainly it is worth checking them out.

I found them at www.linuxcanada.com

They didn't have anything that interested me but they seem to have exactly what Mr Field needs.

Thanks for your wonderful magazine.

LG has received announcements from Linux Canada before about their POS products. I sent the URL to Dennis, but I also noted that I couldn't get into the site when I retested it. However, I can get into the site now. I think Dennis is looking for more of a software solution, whereas Linux Canada is more geared toward special hardware. But maybe Dennis will find what he needs. -- Mike

Thank you for your rapid reply.

So far as I know Linux Canada only sells software. There has (in the last 2 years) never been a suggestion of hardware sales or availability - only accounting and point of sale SOFTWARE.

The only time I have had trouble getting into their website was when the backbone was clogged, you could not even get anywhere in Canada then. You may have had a similar problem.

Harold A. J. Isaacs

RE:Battle for the Desktop: Why Linux Isn't Winning

Mon, 5 Nov 2001 15:33:25 +0100
Ian Carr-de Avelon (ian from emit.pl)

There are a whole series of relatively common problems related in this article, like applications software which does not run smoothly on all distributions and hardware which is not suported by a distribution, or sometimes by any Linux driver at all.

The real point is what can be done about this, and who should do it. The author, Dennis Field, seems to put the blame with the Linux distribution he chose. He, or his employer, paid them good money and so Linux should do what he needs it to do. There is nothing wrong with the logic of this, but the prospect of all distributions, or the most comercial distributions, or even one Linux distribution running out of the box on all old and new PCs is pritty well nill. Also even if that did happen, it would not get Mr Field to his goal of using Linux for the whole bookshop in one giant leap.

The problems which would need to be fixed even in this one "case study" are spread accrose the developers of: Linux kernel, X windows, StarOffice, and the distribution's firewall. Each of these have nowhere near the resources or assistance from hardware designers which Microsoft has, and yet they produce software which (on other criteria than out of the box installation on all PCs) far outperforms Microsoft's products. They have a right to pride in their work and respect from others, and simply calling for any of these teams to work harder till the problems nolonger exist would really mean accepting that Linux has lost, because even if the developers gave up all their free time, the extra improvement could never have the kind of impact which the author desires.

I have writen elsewhere (http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/15359/84340) how I would generally advise SMEs to move towards Linux, but given the evidence of interest in building fairly complex systems at low cost, maybe we need a business by business (Bookshops, Chemists, Garages) Linux forum to give system integration with Linux the kind of boost which Linux Documentation Project (LDP) and sourceforge have done in other ways.


[Dennis also has another article in this issue. -Iron.]

Re: Battle for the Desktop: Why Linux Isn't Winning

Fri, 9 Nov 2001 15:22:51 -0800
Robin Rowe (Robin.Rowe from MovieEditor.com)


It is unfortunate that you had trouble installing Linux on your ThinkPad. You don't say what distros you tried, and each distro works a bit differently. Since installation troubles are really the domain of the distro and not the operating system itself it seems unfair that you name the problem as Linux but avoided naming the distros that actually caused you the trouble.

Have you tried Debian Linux? This is a very popular distro, supported entirely by volunteers. You could download the boot/root floppy images from debian.org, copy them on to two floppies, then boot and install a minimal Debian Linux OS. This is usually quite easy. After configuring your Linux network settings and adjusting your sources.list to point to the Debian download site you could then use dselect or apt-get to install the rest of whatever you want automatically over the Internet.

That you would have the troubles you did isn't too surprising. Most Windows users would have trouble in the similar circumstances trying to install Windows on their own for the first time without ever having used it before. A more realistic approach when installing Linux for the first time is to enlist the aid of other Linux users. Most Linux users groups host monthly installfests for this reason, so that new users get the install help they need from experienced hands. Had you done that I expect you would have had an operational Linux laptop within minutes. Another approach is to join the debian mailing list where anybody usually gets answers to install problems within a few minutes.

Your analogy comparing Linux to a Ferrari with no wheels is unjust. The wheels are right there, you just had a problem with your "Some Assembly Required" situation. You were not picking up your new Ferrari at the dealer, were you? If you were buying a new Thinkpad purchased from IBM with Linux already pre-installed (look under "personal systems" at www.ibm.com/linux) you should have no installation problems whatsoever.

Please let me know if I can be of any help to you installing Debian Linux on your laptop.



The distinction between Tips and Articles

Mon, 5 Nov 2001 12:15:23 -0800
Mike Orr (LG editor)
Part of a discussion with Matthias Arndt about his article this month

:) Articles go to gazette@linuxgazette.net in HTML format. Tips, tech-support questions and tech-support answers go to tag@lists.linuxgazette.net in text format.

Basically, a tip covers just one simple topic in a screenful or two (or less). An article covers several subtopics under separate headings and/or is more than a couple screenfulls.

... and Tips rarely involve more than one Answer Gang member's comments. I do like to use this rule of thumb: would the answer (possibly without explanation) fit in a .sig block? If not, it's probably not small enough to make a good Tip.

When the discussions get going even a short thread might go into TAG, and some of the better long answers in TAG still aren't as long as a standard article. I'd also like to remind people that for article submissions, we prefer simple HTML to the font-laden stuff automatically generated by most web browsers when "mail as HTML" is turned on. -- Heather

Issue 13

Mon, 12 Nov 2001 11:26:28 +0100
Russell Coker (russell from coker.com.au)

The following section isn't displayed correctly because you don't use &lt; and &gt; for the <stdio> part.

      They will not echo what I print.

Thanks Russell. We don't generally go through the back issues to correct things like this; things have gotten a lot better since then, and I'm proud to say that things have to be sneakier that that to put bugs into our HTML code these days :) -- Heather

This page edited and maintained by the Editors of Linux Gazette Copyright © 2001
Published in issue 73 of Linux Gazette December 2001
HTML script maintained by Heather Stern of Starshine Technical Services, http://www.starshine.org/

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