Friday, 18 February 2011

OS X change printer settings

So a printer IP address changed, and I print directly to it, so how do you change the IP address of a printer already in your printer list in OS X 10.5?

Well, I found this post which basically says you can change the /etc/cups/printers.conf file. This isn't too easy as first you need to change file permissions. I opened in textedit and changed the IP address only to find this did not change the settings, presumably some service needs rebooting. Looks like it works off the "printers.conf.0" file. So I eventually gave up and just re-added the printer!

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Deploy Studio Set up RC20

So after my trials and tribulations with Deploy Studio RC20 we ended up uninstalling it completely so as to rule it out. But alas, it was needed and so upon reinstalling it, I found that I needed to set it up again. So refering back to my notes........ doh, didn't make many notes (in fact I only made one note), and so I am writing this 'note' on how I did it.

So, I worked out that you need to start the service before setting it up. It's because it gives itself it's name based on the server address, and does other things. So, after this I refered to the pdf I downloaded, which is a little out of date and NOT made by the people who made Deploy Studio (I have no idea why?). So basically:

This network sharepoint was setup previously

These groups were also setup previously

These settings are the default settings and haven't been tested. It did state in the PDF that the IP address should be that of the server, but this is incorrect. It has to do with multicasting.

So, hopefully this helps in the future. Let it be known that I have taken notes!

Deploy Studio set up and DHCP problems

I've been using Deploy Studio server for at least 1 year, perhaps 2, and it's fantastic. It's streamlined imaging perfectly, with workflows helping with different setups.

But all good things have their drawbacks, and upon upgrading Deploy Studio server from RC14 to RC20 everything appeared good, until two days later the Network Administrator rings me up and asks if he can unplug the Xserver, doh! It appeared to be the cause of much dismay for those two days, constantly giving all computers wrong DHCP information, for which is was not even meant to be giving!

We looked into it and the Xserver was responding to DHCP requests and giving "" as the dns server, overriding what the computers normally had set, which caused much much confusion. It was of course quite amazing that the network administrator managed to track it down to this problem, but I do suppose it took two days.

Upon closer examination, we noticed the DHCP service was "apparently" not running, but when we switched the "Netboot' service off it no longer responded to DHCP requests. So it was the Netboot service which was using part of the DHCP service, which Alan was sure was not 'usual'. Of course we were not sure what it did before the trouble started, whether or not it responded before of not, and whether it was just the fact it was dishing out the wrong DHCP information (IP Stack someone later told me) rather then no information.

We looked at the stopped DHCP service settings and saw one entry, which did have "" in it's properties. We deleted this entry, which was the only entry, but we still received responses. We measured these responses and it was now giving out the right information, which was better, but we would have preferred it not to give any information.

So to conclude, I whittled it down to the update from Deploy Studio RC14 to RC20, where Deploy Studio had changed, and perhaps added the "" entry the way Netboot used the  DHCP service.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

iMac 21.5" - 11, 2 - 10.6.6 - Installation and deployment - Part 2

After NetInstalling OS X 10.5.8 on the new iMac I got a black screen. I still think it was worth a try.

So, I swapped the "fully updated" one for another new iMac so I could start at OS X 10.6.4. Tried Active Directory and it worked fine, as well as NHR login scripts. So I jumped to the conclusion that it was in the use of "Migration Assistant" that some 'damage' occurred. But, I was still cautious of updating the operating system any further. My plan is/was to update everything else, image it, then update the operating system to see if everything still works and carry on accordingly.

So, I had to start from scratch and installed:
  • Final Cut Studio 2 - had to install at least 3 times to get 'all' the files
  • Aperture
  • Adobe CS5
  • Adobe Acrobat Pro 9 - no serial number
  • CeltX
  • Audacity
  • iWork 09
  • Burn
  • ClickView
  • DivX
  • Firefox 3.6.13
  • Handbrake
  • Office 2008
  • Mplayer Ex...
  • DeployStudio RC20
  • NHRBasic
  • Flip4Mac
  • ARD Client 3.4
  • PCclient
  • Don't have "Logic" Disks on server
  • VLC 1.1.7

  • HP Scanjet 4370
  • Nikon CoolScan 8000
  • Scanwizard Pro 7.20

  • 5550
  • 3110
  • Canon Pixma IP4500
  • Konica 7300

  • PenTablet 521-3 - I think this covers all the tablets we have.
Forgot also to add "Media" user to the local users.

I partitioned the HD via Boot Camp Assistant and formatted it as HFS+ Journaled, named "Scratch Disk". Just going to make the first image now.....

.... and now just updated to 10.6.6, and student login worked just fine! So to conclude, "Migration Assistant" probably isn't good for transferring apps across operating system versions.

I am now imaging using Deploy Studio, but having to clear a bit of space on the server so it can fit on. The space taken on the iMac is 85GB, it needed more then 130GB (not sure how much more) for doing server side compression, I've now freed up 200GB on the server. 78 mins till it's uploaded, but then it'll take the old server, bless the poor thing, quite a while to compress the image.

... I left it over night and it did it. A nice thing to note is that if you use a local repository, I think it doesn't use the server to compress the image.

Worked a charm, and even worked with multicasting, yay.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

iMac 21.5" - 11, 2 - 10.6.6 - Installation and deployment

Just received 10 new 21.5" iMacs, version "11, 2" ,  with 10.6.6 installed. Very nice, with quad core and 1GB Hard Drives, but having a few different issues has caused me to put them back to 10.5.8 temporarily until the main issues are fixed.

To streamline the operation I decided rather then starting from scratch, I would use Migration Assistant to transfer accounts and applications from the latest MacBook Pro which had everything on. This worked very well, but in heinsight might have caused the issues below. These problems need testing on a fresh install of OS X 10.6.6.

Issues which I encountered:

  • Students on Active Directory require to put details in more then once before they can login, for machines only just switched on!! I think this is to do with how quick the mac boots up, too quick to authenticate itself on active directory?
  • NHR (Network Home Redirector) scripts not running at login or logout.
  • Deploy Studio netboot not working; firstly freezing on the white screen with the grey apple (no spinning wheel, and secondly crashing and rebooting when loading the next screen after the one just mentioned.
With the students active directory issue (not properly tested on staff accounts), there was not much to try as I think it is more of a problem with Active Directory Servers or how OS X 10.6.6 communicates with them, which is too time consuming at present (there is pressure to deploy iMacs within the next 2 days at most). I did some simply exploratory fixes:
  1. take off of active directory and put it back on
  2. make sure everything was up-to-date
  3. refer back to solution 1.
When there is more time I shall need to look into this, but also future releases of the operating system will fix these. One thing I would like to do is try active directory logins on a fresh install of the operating system

With NHR I downloaded the latest, 3.2.6, uninstalled and reinstalled. What might have caused the problems is that I transferred files from a MacBook Pro running 10.5.8, which might have transferred some of NHR Scripts but not all. I also tried the full version which creates more alias's. Unfortunately not much info on NHR website, no-one else seems to be having problems. One thing I would like to do is try the scripts on a fresh copy of 10.6.6.

After these two problems and diminishing time I decided it was best to revert to 10.5.8 until time would allow these problems to be resolved. But, I did not want my efforts to go to waste, so I decided to make a disk image of the machine with its' problems so I can continue later. Little was I to suspect any more issues. I held down 'N' for netboot to DeployStudio and the machine froze on the white screen with the grey apple (no spinning wheel). Doh! The problem was probably because the last deploy studio netboot image was made on a MacBook Pro 15" now 2 years old.

I subsequently made a new netboot image (nbi) from this iMac and tried again, this time to get the spinning wheel but to crash on trying to load the next screen! This was probably due to outdated DeployStudio (currently using RC14 on the server and RC 15 on clients). I updated the client to the latest and the same happened again! So I updated the server, but alas, the installer said the minimum requirements were not met!! Server is running 10.4.11!!! Needs updating!!! So I go traipsing around for the last version to support 10.4.11 server, which was a lot of hassle. I'd like to not that the DeployStudio website (both Wiki and main site) are not good for troubleshooting, with only the latest versions available. I finally found RC20 here. Eventually worked! Yay.

After this I went to make an image of the drive but alas, not enough room on the server. So I used Boot Camp Assistant in OS X 10.6.6, and partitioned the drive - 160GB for OS X and the rest for "Scratch Disk". I then NetBooted again and used Disk Utility to make a compressed Disk Image and put it on the Scratch. Turned out to be 79GB, original was 106GB.

So now to put OS X 10.5.8 on, which will hopefully work on this machine!!

Thursday, 3 February 2011

MacBook Pro 17" fsck error EXITED WITH SIGNAL 8

Rob brought in his 17" MacBook which wouldn't get past the white screen with a gray apple and spinning dotty thing. I tried resetting the PR RAM. Next I tried single user mode with /sbin/fsck -yf. Results as shown:
Rebuilding B-Tree
could not repair volume
/dev/rdisk1s2 (hfs) EXITED WITH SIGNAL 8

Looked this up and found quite a few people with MacBook Pro's having the same error, looked to be related just with the file system and probably not a hard drive fault (hopefully). As Rob needed stuff off the HD I found only one command which might fix it, found it here:

  1. Boot off the OS X CD (reboot, hold C while booting).
  2. The installer will load up, go to Utilities in the menu and run Terminal.
  3. Type df and look for the drive that has your Mac system mounted---you'll have to unmount this. On my MacBook Pro, it was /dev/disk0s2.
  4. Type umount /dev/disk0s2, replacing disk0s2 with whatever disk your OS lives on.
  5. Type fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk0s2. If you umounted the wrong thing, it will complain that you can't repair a mounted drive. Go back and umount the right thing and repeat this step.
I found netbooting to a deploy studio image had the same results as using the install disk. Coinsidence or not it, it was disk0s2 that was the OS X partition.

Anyway, it came up with another error, saying volume could not be repaired. I put it in target disk mode and mounted it on another MacBook Pro. It came up saying that there are serious issues with the volume which cannot be repaired, it is only being mounted to retrieve files which should be backed up immediately.

I used Migration Assistant to get the user account across, and copied other erroneous files. I re-partitioned and re-imaged the macbook pro and all is well.