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Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Problems with Apple Mail after upgrading from Tiger to Leopard

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Something of a quick note, but anyone that has had Apple Mail just pause and hang after updating to Leopard from Tiger…. Try the following.

Quit Apple Mail and then make a copy of the ~/Library/Preferences/ file to your desktop. Duplicate the file on your desktop for safe keeping.

Open the file in a plist editor. Now open a fresh file in the editor also ( Can create this by removing your current plist and just launch Apple Mail). Make anything that has to do with Junk mail in your current plist file like that in the “new” plist file. Save your changes and then copy that back into your Preference folder.

Basically the Junk Mail settings from Tiger for whatever reason cause issues in Leopard. This will hopefully fix your problem.

I’m currently tired and just wanted to jot this down before I forget. Will come back and refresh this to be more readable… lol

Written by rrhpph

October 23rd, 2009 at 12:03 pm

Disable “Firefox has just update” tab from appearing

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So I decided to finally stop the madness with all of these updates and figure out how I can disable the default behavior of Firefox to let the end user know their browser has been updated. For a normal user, this is not a problem and actually probably a good thing. For a Sys Admin installing updates to labs, the lab users do not care if their browser has been updated.

Anyway, the line to change is located in the “about:config” in Firefox. Search for mstone and change the value to “ignore” for the Preference Name :

I hope this is handy for others out there. Oh, another good reference site is the following.

Written by rrhpph

April 29th, 2009 at 10:13 am

Problems with Active Directory and Leopard — error of type -14090 (eDSAuthFailed)

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So, here at CIAS we have been having problems with our Leopard Active Directory machines losing their knowledge of the directory.  We would try to unbind the machines, which would fail and require us to do a force unbind.  Then, when we go and try to rebind the machines to the directory we would always get the following message.

“Unable to add the domain.  An unexpected error of type -14090 (eDSAuthFailed) occurred.”  Wonderful….

After numerous attempts at trying to figure out what was going on, our only solution was to reimage the machine.  Not really a good solution.

Well, today I had finally decided to spend some time on this problem and try to figure out what was going on.  With some help from our local Software Engineering team I noticed that the following directory had a zero byte size file, Mainly the Kerberos plist file for our Active Directory.  Hmm, that does not sound right.

directory to look in: /var/db/dslocal/nodes/Default/config/

So, I removed the file with the zero size and then tried another rebind to the directory and it worked.  Yes!  Everything is now happy.

Command to fix (at RIT): sudo rm /var/db/dslocal/nodes/Default/config/Kerberos:MAIN.AD.RIT.EDU.plist

Written by rrhpph

January 19th, 2009 at 12:46 pm

Posted in General,Software

Great tire wall cleaner

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This past weekend I was washing my truck and really wanted to clean my white lettering on my tires. Well, after some searching around the garage I noticed I was out of my normal tire cleaner. So I pondered for a minute and then decided to try my hand cleaner.

IT WORKED! The stuff actually worked and worked really well. What was it? Orange Goop hand cleaner. Stuff works on anything.

Written by rrhpph

August 18th, 2008 at 4:49 am

Posted in General

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mDNSResponder — Mac stuck at boot screen

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So today I had a professor bring their Leopard 10.5.4 laptop back to me because it was stuck booting up.  Well, come to find out in single user mode the System log file had a whole bunch of lines like this:

—–[1] ([53]): posix_spawnp(“/usr/sbin/mDNSResponder”, …): No such file or directory
…[1] ([53]): Exited with exit code: 1
…[1] ( Throttling respawn: Will start in 10 seconds


So, after some searching I found that it probably could be permission problems.  Sure enough, I changed the permissions on the root volume to 775 and bingo the laptop now boots.  What the heck!

chmod 775 /

Written by rrhpph

August 13th, 2008 at 10:24 am

Posted in General,Software

First post from iPhone

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So, this is my first post from my iPhone. Very cool application. But it is scary to think that I can post from anywhere I have signal. Very cool!

Written by rrhpph

August 4th, 2008 at 3:30 pm

Posted in General

Netbooting Macs across subnets

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So, I was recently asked if we Netboot are machines.  The answer to that is yes and we have been since the days of 10.0.  The main reason for moving to Netbooting computers is the convenience of not having to be at that physical spot to reimage a computer. The other main reason is that it is fast and very cool.

So, how is this achieved one might ask.  First off, let’s list the tools that you will need for such an endeavor.


  • OS X Server running the Netboot daemon
  • OS X Server hosting the disc images for Netboot –> this is usually the same machine as your netboot server
  • A file server to handle the images that get deployed, i.e. Lab images or Faculty images
    • This for us is a separate OS X Server with the images on a AFP share.  These can be SMB or even NFS.
  • Bombich:
    • NetRestore
      • This application is used to apply your “models” to the client computer”
    • NetRestore Helper
      • This application is used to create your “model” image and also your Netboot Install image that your computers will boot from over the network
    • NetBoot across subnets or NBA
      • This is the tool used to build the shell script you will need to run on your client computers to get them to NetBoot accross the subnets  –> or you can just look below.  I already have the script that is need for both. 🙂
  • Apple Remote Desktop
    • This one is optional, but really a requirement if you want total automation, or at least automation from your office desktop.


So, here is how all of this works.  First off let’s explain a bit about how to get started.

First thing you do is setup your back end infrastructure to support your new NetBoot environment.  Setup your OS X server and turn on the NetBoot feature.

Now setup your File Server (recommended that this is a different machine then your NetBoot box) and create a user that has read only access to your “image” directory.  i.e. Create a share point to hold your “Model” images that you create using NetRestore helper.

Okay, now go to your latest and greatest machine you have in your department and download and launch NetRestore Helper.  Once started select the “Create NetInstall Set” tab.  Give your image a name, recommended that it does not contain any spaces.  Mine is called NetBoot_Intel. Image ID can be 101 or something of that short.  Description is not required but you can put something in there if your desire.  Leave the Protocol set to NFS.

Now click on the “Advance Settings” and you will see a new window.  Here is were the true magic lies. You can turn on ARD under NetBoot.  Yes, you can remote control a netbooting machine.  COOL STUFF!!!!  Anyways, check the boxes next to “Enable Screen Sharing” and “Enable SSH”. The SSH one is up to you.  Then fill in the Username and Password field for the account that is going to get created.  I recommend this be the same local user that you use for Remote management and as a back door to your systems.

Okay, hit the “Okay” button and click the “Save NetInstall-Restore set” button.  NetRestore Helper will now create the desired NetBoot disc image on your desktop.

Once the image is created you can modify NetRestore’s settings by launching the application right from the disc image.  I will not get into this here.  The settings are pretty much self explanatory.  If you are wondering though, I do not use the local settings feature.  I actually build my settings on the fly using a MYSQL database, shell, and PHP scripts.

Well now you have your NetInstall disc image.  What need to do next is copy the disc image to your NetBoot server.  The NetBoot folder is usually located in /Library/NetBoot/.  Inside you will see multiple folders.  Put your disc image inside the NetBootSPO folder.  The NetBoot side of things is now set.  You may need to restart the NetBoot server for the new disc image to work.

Now, from here you can use NetRestore to create your “Model image” and then upload that to the your file server share.  I will post more detail about this later.

Now, how do we get these machines to NetBoot.  If the machine is located in the same subnet as the NetBoot Server then you will see the option to Boot to your server in the Startup Disk utility.  To boot machines off subnet, you need to install the following script and then run it.  This is where Apple Remote Desktop comes in handy.  You can just actually run this script right from the “Run Unix Command” without installing it.  Please make sure you change the variables to match your environment.

— Begin Script —

### Global Variables ###

### Fuctions ###

reimage () {

# Determine Arch value and point to proper netboot image
if [ "`arch`" == "ppc" ] ; then


if [ $simple == true ]; then
if [ "`arch`" == "ppc" ]; then
/usr/sbin/nvram boot-device="enet:${server}" boot-args="" boot-file=""
/usr/sbin/bless --netboot --server "bsdp://${server}" $nextboot
if [ "`arch`" == "ppc" ]; then
/usr/sbin/nvram boot-args="rp=${protocol}:${server}:/private/tftpboot/NetBoot/${sharepoint}:${setName}/${imageName}" boot-file="enet:${server},NetBoot\\${sharepoint}\\${setName}\\mach.macosx" boot-device="enet:${server},NetBoot\\${sharepoint}\\${setName}\\booter"
/usr/sbin/bless --netboot --booter "tftp://${server}/NetBoot/${sharepoint}/${setName}/i386/booter" --kernel "tftp://${server}/NetBoot/${sharepoint}/${setName}/i386/mach.macosx" --options "rp=${protocol}:${server}:/private/tftpboot/NetBoot/${sharepoint}:${setName}/${imageName}" $nextboot


— End of Script —

So, there you have it.  NetBoot is cool and very helpful when working on computers remotely.

Written by rrhpph

March 25th, 2008 at 6:27 am

Posted in General

Decided to join

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Well, since everyone is going crazy about blogs and wordpress, I decided to see what all the commotion is about. I guess it is a good way to stay in touch and share your thoughts. Makes everything searchable by google and collaboration is at it’s highest point once it is on the web. Share your thoughts, give me your mind….

So, here is the start to my blogging future. Good or bad, time will tell.

Written by rrhpph

February 20th, 2008 at 9:06 am

Posted in General