Guillaume “Zifro” Desrat’s former blog

Trousers have firmware, too

Filed under: misc, geek — Zifro February 24, 2008 @ 5:25 pm

One week ago, I went to a factory outlet to buy some trousers (mine were definitely out of usage).
For the same model and same size, I found three different jeans : I didn’t fit in the first, and I felt comfortable in the two others, even I felt differently in those.

I bought the two latters, and, asking the sales woman for what the codes I noticed were, she explained me one was the textile code and the other … well, I don’t remember what the other was.
I reminded me how tricky it is when you buy computer parts ; you always have to check which firmware there is in.

Trousers have firmware, too.
2008 is so incredible !

This blog hasn’t closed !

Filed under: misc — Zifro December 11, 2006 @ 3:04 pm

I still live heh.

This blog is just in need of some update (and I have many to post, like testing a TV card under OpenBSD, my trip to Paris and so on…).

Have fun, and stay tuned !


Filed under: misc — Zifro October 27, 2006 @ 10:32 pm

My Livebox still lives.

What’s a Livebox ?
It’s basically an ADSL modem, a router and a pretty web interface packed together in a plastic box. Many ISPs offer to lend their customers “their” “box”, which, depending on where you live and which connection you choose, also let you phone (for very cheap or even free) and watch TV. Those are called “triple-play boxes”.
The Livebox is the triple-play box of Orange, a major (and historically the oldest) Internet services provider in France.

Two weeks ago, after many powercuts due to my fight with the coffee machine in the kitchen, my Livebox lost her firmware. I was glad to be able to phone my ISP technical support, at half past midnight, so the extra money spent in this ISP services are worth, and get the information needed : how to flash the Livebox to put back the firmware. Of course the call was longer than expected, because the tech wanted to know the brand of my computer O_o and the operating system I ran. I tried to explain that OpenBSD was like Linux (please, readers, don’t hurt me for having said that) and, after waiting for some time, I finally got him explain me what was wrong and how I could fix it under Windows, the day after, at work.

First part ends here.

So I flashed the Livebox with the firmware I had on the ISP CD-ROM and brought it back home.

At first connection, the Livebox updated her firmware, then I hit the “update firmware” again, to be sure to get the latest one. Finally it was running the latest and orangish-coloured Web interface (as opposed to the previous gray, green, red and blue old one, when the company was named Wanadoo).

And since then, I could hardly use the IP phone : the service was either down or avalaible until I dial a number. So I called back the technical support, explained what happened and got an exchange number (the Livebox is their property, not mine, which is useful when it’s broken :-) ).

I was worried, because there are two brands of Liveboxes : Inventel and Sagem ones. I have an Inventel, which are said to be more reliable, which I like much for the ease of use, the clean and understandable interface and so on.. the Sagem Liveboxes are the worst routers I’ve ever seen.


I can tell because my mother has one, and guess who configured it ? You can’t change the Livebox IP address on the LAN, you have unuseful and weird menus… to be polite, I stop here. Just say it’s like WinDEV.

Second part ends here.

As I didn’t want to exchange my Inventel for a Sagem, I wait for a week, being able to phone from time to time, missed the opportunity to get the new one on Saturday.

It was worth waiting, the Livebox updated its firmware two nights ago, and now the IP phone works perfectly :-)

Really, it’s a relief not to have to exchange it. i love my Inventel Livebox :-)

Firefox 2.0

Filed under: misc — Zifro October 24, 2006 @ 12:12 am

Like, I guess, thousands of bloggers, here I write about the all new, all shiny, all free (both as in “freedom” and in “free beer”) Firefox 2.0.

Tristant NITOT presented all the new features of this second major release at the JDLL.
Sexy (the features !).

As the official announcement will only be made in few hours (it’s 5 minutes before midnight here in France), the 2.0 version is already avalaible, according to various sites and (best source) Mozilla public ftp server.

Of course, Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 will be avalaible soon (if not already), but, after trying for some months both Firefox 2.0 (release candidates) and Internet Explorer (beta 2), the latter is not even equal to Firefox 1.x series.

Get your copy… if you can :
[zifro@september ~]ftp
Connected to
421 There are too many connected users, please try later.

Dream (again)

Filed under: WTH is this post uncategorized ?, misc — Zifro October 20, 2006 @ 1:56 am

It looks like I’ve always an American girl in my dreams.

Last night I dreamed of Amy Davidson (!), which I knew from the TV series “8 Simple Rules…” (“Touche Pas A Mes Filles” in France) ; a strange dream of course. I was living in a huge shed, just using a small area (and I was considering parking my car inside, at the opposite side). In my dream I met the girl, we got friends, and as she was to leave France, I managed to get in the US, where she gave me a fake passport, without a visa.

When I write I make weird dreams from time to time…

(By the way, reading page about the series, I learnt there is no season 4. It is over. It gonna ruin my week-end :-\ I loved it)

Where is the Monday post ?

Filed under: misc — Zifro October 9, 2006 @ 11:28 pm

There are none.

I’ve become quite lazy lately. Waking up, going to the office, working,  going back home, playing Forza Motorsport on XboX, sleeping. Nothing more.

For the moment :)

Happy birthday !

Filed under: misc — Zifro September 28, 2006 @ 2:28 pm

Today it’s the birthday of someone very important to me, and who comes to read this blog from time to time.
So happy birthday ! o/

In quest of a photo management application

Filed under: misc — Zifro September 26, 2006 @ 9:21 am

Yesterday evening, I was cleaning the mess in some of my most populated directories
(recup/, downloads/ and sandbox/), which, by deleting some unuseful files (what the
hell have I kept a 700 MB livecd.iso ?) and moving some others, helped me grow
the free space on /home from 115 MB to 6.3GB.

Then I started looking at photos/, where I store every each picture I’ve taken with
the camera my parents and my sister offered me, last Christmas, a Nikon Coolpix
This directory is 10 GB heavy, and as I was talking with Clenche, on IRC
( @ FreeNode), he asked us what software we used to handle and sort
our pictures albums.
So I started telling him I would like an application to tag my albums, reorder them,
manipulate a bit the images and stuff (yes, something like Picasa, which doesn’t
run under OpenBSD, even with the Linux binary compatibility activated).

Browsing the Internet, I found digiKam (to shorten all the trolls, yes it has a K
as in KDE).
Download latest stable source, bunzip2, tar, cd digikam-0.9.0-beta2, more README.
Damn, dependencies are a PITA !

– DEPENDENCIES ——————————————————-

AutoConf >= 2.5.x
AutoMake >= 1.7.x
KDE >= 3.x (>=3.5.x recommended)
sqlite >= 3.x
dcraw >= 8.x (>=8.30 recommended)
exiv2 >= 0.9.x
libgphoto2 >= 2.x (>=2.2.x recommended)
libkipi >= 0.1
liblcms >= 1.14.x
libtiff >= 3.6.x (>=3.8.2 recommended)
libpng >= 1.2.x

On Tuesday, 00:07 am, I didn’t want to deal with this… but instead of giving up,
I took a look at the packages.
Great, it exists !
Of course, it’s an old version (0.7.2) but it will help me test it.

[root@september i386]pkg_add digikam-0.7.2.tgz
digikam-0.7.2:gdbm-1.8.3p0: complete
digikam-0.7.2:libgphoto-2.1.5: complete
ddigikam-0.7.2:libkexif-0.2.1: complete
digikam-0.7.2:libkipi-0.1.1: complete
digikam-0.7.2: complete

I love OpenBSD <3

At first launch, it asks you where to store the albums, then it starts.
The interface is clean, but what I quickly noticed is that Album -> Export and
Tools -> Batch Processing are empty.

One pkg_add later…

[root@september i386]pkg_add digikamimageplugins-0.7.2.tgz
digikamimageplugins-0.7.2: complete

The above menus still aren’t filled :(

Playing with it for five minutes, it seems to be very slow, particularly in menus,
but it does its job, and I’ll give it a try for some time, to see if it fits my needs
(at the moment, I can’t make an exhaustive list of them).

If you use a better application for photo management, let me know !

Friday post.

Filed under: work, friends, misc — Zifro September 22, 2006 @ 10:30 am

As usual, it’s a pleasure to wake up on Friday, knowing I’ll recover all the lack of sleep the day after. Okay, it becomes a pleasure only after spending a Willpower skill point to achieve the action :)

Anyway, I’m sitting down here , wondering if I’ll manage to debug the copy/paste work I was told to do (yes, it’s one of this company “best pratices” : if it already exists somewhere and it’s not reusable because it’s not a library or a class, copy paste it then !). The biggest fun of it was when I noticed the code I had to merge from two windows (yes, former developers put code into windows) use global procedures for the first and local ones for the other, which had the same names :)
[EDIT : as I keep on working while I write this (or the reverse), I found the bug]
Best of all, I let my project manager know I’m in trouble with the old code, and he said “weird… you just had to copy paste it”. How useful.

He had told me this job would be a good experience, that I’ll learn to solve problems like anywhere else… oh true… sadly true.

If I need some more sleep, it’s partly because I went out Thursday night, to meet a former colleague, who worked with me for more than a year when I was a techie, installing hardware and configuring software in our shops, Europe-wide.
He now lives in Saint Barthélémy, doing quite the same job, for local prestigious hostels and companies, earning more money (but life’s more expensive over there). As we talked about my current company, we agreed that it didn’t fit us both : too little will to evolve and we wanted (and I want) more.

Two girls and a guy from the accounting dept. came as well, the tapas, the sangria and the beer ; it was really nice, and we’re considering organizing new events (a girl offered to go to the paintball).

As my favourite Friday evening party is going to Nîmes‘ car meeting and drag races, I thought I’d enjoy it today. Too bad the weather’s not suitable. This week-end is about to be uneventful.

It doesn’t matter, I have much work to achieve :)

Stats for September 7-13 and 12-18

Filed under: WTH is this post uncategorized ?, misc — Zifro September 19, 2006 @ 1:10 pm

This site is hosted on the Free homepages server, on which I’ve had an account for years. Though I’m considering moving to a more professional hosting plan, I’m still glad to use it.

I use the Google Analytics service to keep an eye on statistics and trafic analysis.

From September 7th to 13th :

  • Map : most of the visitors are European, others are from Northern and Central America
  • Countries : okay, a bit more than half of the visitors are French… but that’s normal no ? :)
  • Languages : weird, some French have set their accepting-language to EN/US, but it comforts me in my choice to write it in English
  • Operating systems : Windows is the most used (maybe because most of the visitors come from work), but real operating systems are well represented here
  • Browsers : w00t ! w00t ! Firefox wins !
  • Resolutions : just to know if you have big screens^W displays or not

And now, from September 12th to 18th :

  • Map : more Europeans, more US people, still someone in Mexico and a new visitor from Philippines
  • Countries : lesser French (hardly half of the readers), more German, everybody’s welcome
  • Languages : lesser French, more US, more European
  • Operating systems : Linux makes the better progress, but there are still too much Windows
  • Browsers : lesser Firefox users, but still far ahead
  • Resolutions : you still have big displays
  • Number of visit / hit : there are some people reading this blog, thanks :)

And I’d like to thank all of those who told me they liked my blog, its tone, my way of writing how desperate I am, working with WinDEV.

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