Openmoko Freerunner WPA Wifi howto

‘ello again, after some head scratching and beer drinking and lots of trial and mainly error I have now worked out how to get my Freerunner to connect to my WPA network at home 🙂

This is a very rough guide and there is probably a much better way to do it 🙂 The better way is waiting until August for the ASU to be released with a decent tool for doing this automatically 🙂

All I know is that it is working here :)  Oh you will want to do this all over ssh btw 🙂

Step 1: vi /etc/network/interfaces and make the wireless section look like with the obvious bits modified:

# Wireless interfaces
iface eth0 inet dhcp
wireless_mode managed
wireless_essid **********PUT YOUR ROUTER'S ESSID HERE**************
wpa-driver wext
wpa-conf /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf

Step 2: run wpa_passphrase followed by your essid so in my case:
wpa_passphrase 100acre
It will then ask you for your WPA key
It will return a block of code all we want from this is the line beginning psk= so copy that and paste it somewhere safe.

Step 3: edit your wpa_supplicant config file :
vi /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
and make it look like:

# File: /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
psk=******put the output of wpa_passphrase here but no quotation marks*******

Step 4. Edit sysconfig for wpa_supplicant :
vi /etc/sysconfig/wpa_supplicant
and make it look like:

# File: /etc/sysconfig/wpa_supplicant

Step 5: There is no step 5

Step 6: ifup eth0

The first DNS request I made took aaaaages but eventually came back then after that it has been snappy 🙂
Have fun 🙂

Any corrections / ideas let me know 🙂 I know this is not perfect but it did get me online 🙂

Tig on Tour

Yep, I am going on tour 🙂

The plan is to jump on the ferry with the mighty “paw of doom” (mx5) some equipment (more to follow) and a map 🙂

Then come back about 10 days later 🙂

More to follow 🙂

What the hell is this insect?

Discovered in the kitchen, this is number two, number one got squished after it bit/stung.

It has two wings, they are translucent with a slight smoky band across them.

What am I?

Edit : Ok seriously impressed, posted it on :

Within 3 mins one of the members has possibly identified it as a spider hunting wasp, this was one of the possibilities for the one that got squished last night, googling for the specific variety suggested show pictures which look a bit like it, if it is one then I still suspect it is a juvenile and not fully grown, hence why it is walking everywhere and not flying around the glass 🙂

RT Command Line adding users

A while a go I needed to add a whole raft of users (about 400 or so 🙂 ) to our work RT system. Doing this manually had little appeal so I was looking for a scriptable way of doing it.

I found a script on the wiki ( ) but it only supported populating RT from /etc/passwd entires. So close and yet… so with a pointer or two from Bunty, my handy online Perl guru friend 🙂 I managed to use the existing script and bodge it to allow command line arguements 🙂

#!/usr/bin/perl -w
# rtadduser: add a local user to RT
# David Maze
# $Id$
# Poorly modified by Tig to accept commandline arguments
# Known issues, will silently fail if a user already exists

push @INC,"/usr/share/request-tracker3.6/lib/";
use lib "/usr/uns/lib";
use strict;
use English;
use RT::Interface::CLI qw(CleanEnv);
use RT::User;
use Getopt::Long;

my ($user, $passwd, $email);

GetOptions (
"user=s" => \$user,
"email=s" => \$email,
"passwd=s" => \$passwd


print("Creating user with the following variables\n");
print("user : $user\n");
print("e-mail : $email\n");
print("password : $passwd\n");

my $UserObj = new RT::User(RT::SystemUser);
$UserObj->Create(Name => $user,
EmailAddress => "$email",
Privileged => 1,
Password => $passwd

print("If there was no error it possibly worked!\n");

To use this you will need Getopt::Long installed, usage is :

perl rtadduser -user=username -passwd=secretpassword

Oh and you will need to poke line 10 (the one with the path to for your distro.

I will put this onto the wiki soon, just needed to dump it somewhere indexable before I forget about it 🙂

Like a thingy from the wossname…

Right going to have another crack at putting stuff on here as I come across it.

TBH I only planned on this as just a dump for problems I come across that was indexed by search engines but I was busy with stuff and stopped putting stuff up.

Actually it was the fact that someone posted a comment on what I had thrown up last year had helped him has made me decide to try and get back into this 🙂

Ubuntu SSL Woes

If you are following an Ubuntu SSL tutorial and are wondering why apache2-ssl-certificate seems to be missing you can find the work around here :

I hope they fix that for Gutsy 🙂

The Vista with many apologies to E.A.Poe

aOne night when I was weary,and the night was cold and dreary
Over the man pages of Vim an Emacs and their cryptic lore
Whilst I slumpt on the mousemat suddenly a polling,
As some client asking for an IP address at my chamber door.
‘Tis some client, I muttered tossing an IP at the door, polling at my chamber door,
only this and nothing more.

Fast forward :>>

And the client always flapping, like the users always weeping
at the network rules of gateway like portal door
and whilst the traffic is archaic and the protocol anarcic
the traffic will fail to flow without this stupid flaw
and my soul was rather lifted but saddened for the afflicted
to know that Vista does not work…


SVR Appeal

The lovely Severn Vally Railway is in a bit of a state due to a spot of inclement weather in the UK. Give give give, they do a fantastic job and bring lots of money to the Severn Valley and now they need your help.

I love the SVR it is run by people who really care about it and the shocking floods we have had over the last couple of weeks have caused an immense amount of damage with track being left in mid air with no ground supporting it.

Show them some love

For my bit (hic) I staffed the beer tent at this weeks gala/fundraiser, which was yesterday, (and bought my own beer) and nature was incredibly cruel and not only did it rain all day but the night before washed two trees onto the line cutting the Bewdley station off from Kidderminster where there were apparently 800 people who wanted to come on the train. Sadly it took a couple of hours to clear the track and I fear that we lost a lot of people because of the weather and the trains not running 🙁

The irony being that today it has been lovely, top down in the sunshine all the way back, argh one day out 🙁

Of DRM and Libraries

In a fit of quite shocking lazyness, I give you are reply to a post on the LUGRadio forums where I am replying to Chris (CBHWorld) who I met at LRL (Hi) with a hat that I am most envious of 🙂 who could see a justifiable use of DRM for a library style distribution of content. I know where he was going but I believe that the digital model does not fix this and the bit that is important is the stuff about how we have had book DRM before and it did not work :

You can’t compare digital distribution to a library concept, with a library you actually borrow a physical object with a physical production cost and the crucial part is that there is only one copy involved, with digital distribution you are using an exact digital copy with many versions involved. You are not moving a single file between computers so it exists in the one place, you are copying it to many places, perfect identical copies.

A physical book does not have DRM, you can read it anywhere without restrictions, a book is an open format, a book can be easily duplicated with the correct equipment (sheet feed scanner and a printer) the difference is equipment availability and cost of duplication. It is the duplication costs of digital media that blows the business models to shreds and the response is to try and make it so that you cannot copy their copies…

We had the equivalent of book DRM before, anyone else remember the activation codes for computer games? You used to get (back in the old C54 / speccy days) tables at the back of the game handbook, usually with symbols and a number code after it and every time you loaded the game it displayed a set of symbols and then you had to look it up and enter the number before you could play the game. The DRM equivalent is that they printed these chart on dark brown paper in black ink and were very difficult to read and they did this so you didn’t just photocopy the code pages.

All that happened was that it took ONE person to break it by manually copying it out and then photocopy the non-DRM version. Also the non DRM version was better as you could actually read the damn thing. In the end they just gave up that tactic as it didn’t work, they also found that a game that was easy to copy sold more (hell MS built their company on it, not games but home copying).

The only difference between that “book DRM style” and the modern DRM software is the ability to soak it in something to make it blow up in your face after so many days. The only thing is with every tactic like this, the pirated copy is better than purchased copy and that is why DRM doesn’t work socially and for end users.

Most home users would not be breaking DRM, they don’t have to, they can just download it without the DRM from the internet where it was put by one person who did. All they are doing is pissing off their users.

edit : linky to discussion on the spangly new LUGRadio forums. Good job that Trig 🙂

The Linux Codecs Issue

Just read this article and this sort of thing really annoys me. It has been solved already by Fluendo you can legally purchase your codecs from them for 28 euros.

Job done, now can we move on from the codecs issue please.