Cacti, monitoring, SNMP, Linux and OSX

9 February 2007

I setup Cacti to easily monitor my Linux PC and my PowerBook via SNMP.
Here are a few notes about the process :

  • install Cacti : yum install cacti.
  • install the dependencies : net-snmp-utils. Where is cactid ??
  • create the database, create the mysql user : cactiuser for example (do not confuse with the cacti Linux user !), and initialise the database /usr/share/doc/cacti-0.8.6.i/cacti.sql
  • Configure the /etc/cacti/db.php accordingly.
  • Enable the polling in cron : /etc/cron.d/cacti
  • Eventually authorize more IP in /etc/httpd/conf.d/cacti.conf
  • Open http://localhost/cacti/ in a browser and add devices, graphs …

Compared to some other sources, as of Fedora core 6 (FC6), I didn’t have to change user right on directories. I don’t know about SELinux, I should test.

On the PowerBook Mac OS X : set up net-snmp (General SNMP Cacti’s howto) :

  • sudo vi /usr/share/snmp/snmpd.conf. Here is the simplest configuration I could do, still providing SNMPv3 security.

    createUser cacti MD5 password DES
    rouser cacti
    includeAllDisks 5%
    syslocation On my desk

  • Configure the SNMPv3 user/password in Cacti too (Menu : “Settings”) !
  • Stop snmpd : sudo killall snmpd
  • Restart snmpd : sudo snmpd -I -icmp. See : Net-SNMP README OSX.
  • You can have a look at the log file : /var/log/snmpd.log. I still have some errors, but it works :

    nlist err: neither boottime nor _boottime found.
    nlist err: neither cnt nor _cnt found.
    kvm_read(*, 0, 0x249eec, 4) = 0: kvm_read: Bad address
    auto_nlist failed on boottime at location 0

PowerBook 12′ upgrade

25 January 2007

I experienced some slow down with a new application : ADIBOU “learn English”.

So I started looking for ways to upgrade my PowerBook performance.

I found a lot of advices to add memory (I have 512Mo, I could go to 1,2Go). But only one site really explained how to be sure if the lack of performance is memory related. You have to launch the “Profile manager” and look at the number of “memory page out”. When the system runs out of memory, it writes chunk (“pages”) of memory to the Hard Drive to free some space, hence the slow down.

In my case, I saw that no memory pages where written to disk, so my problem won’t be solved with more RAM.

Then, there is the processor : it is already a G4 at 1,5GHz, almost the fastest that can fit in a PowerBook 12′, besides it is very expensive to change.

And the Hard Drive : it is a Hitachi TravelStar 60Go 5k 8Go so all I can do is to put a 7k like the Travelstar E7K60 but I fear it would be expensive, increase heat and consumption …

Great OS X utilitie : witch

19 January 2007

I found a great little utilities for Mac OS X : witch by Peter Maurer !

Witch lets you access all of your windows by pressing a shortcut and choosing from a clearly arranged list of window titles. Moreover, you can use Witch to …

  • Directly access minimized windows without using your mouse
  • Close minimized windows without bringing them to front first
  • Zoom, de-/minimize, and close windows on the fly

Linux and Apple File Sharing

12 January 2007

I tried to setup NFS to access files in my Linux from my PowerBook, but didn’t succeed yet.

With NetTalk (Apple protocol, guess they have better client than for NFS …), it was much easier :

  • Configure /etc/atalk/netatalk.conf
  • Specified the shares in /etc/atalk/AppleVolumes.default
  • Then you can manage to have your Linux share automatically seen in MacOS with the Avahi Zeroconf daemon :
  • Just add the file /etc/avahi/services/afp.service :
    <?xml version="1.0" standalone='no'?><!--*-nxml-*-->
    <!DOCTYPE service-group SYSTEM "avahi-service.dtd">
    <!-- See avahi.service(5) for more information about this configuration file -->
    <name replace-wildcards="yes">AFP file share from Linux</name>

Then you just have to double clic on “AFP file share from Linux” as it appears in the Finder.

Subversion on Mac OSX

30 November 2005

Easy : install this : Subversion-client and this : svnX a nice OSX GUI.
(SvnX project uses Trac : Integrated SCM & Project management a wiki and issue tracking system for software development. Looks good, I already saw it many times.)

Disable Dashboard

29 November 2005

I think I will try this : Disable Dashboard by Rob Griffiths in MacWorld.
Because the Dashboard consum memory and I don’t have much and I don’t use it often, so :
defaults write mcx-disabled -boolean YES

Anyway it is as easy to get it back :
defaults write mcx-disabled -boolean NO

Open Source ports for MacOSX

22 September 2005

Update : 17/09/2006 : MacPorts !
I needed lftp (an efficient ftp program) on my Mac. I found several “Ports projects” : Fink (deb packages) ; (ex and (Source based.) The first (.org) is part of and the second (.com) is more young, more uptodate but more uncertain too.
I choose .org and it went quite well :

  1. Install XCode tools (the installer was on my HDD anyway)
  2. download and install DarwinPorts click, click …
  3. create a .profile in your home directory
    # For DarwinPorts
    export PATH=$PATH:/opt/local/bin
    export MANPATH=$MANPATH:/opt/local/share/man
    export INFOPATH=$INFOPATH:/opt/local/share/infoexport

    Now you see where it is installed : /opt/local/
  4. Type : sudo port install lftp in a terminal and your done.
  5. To keep it up-todate put this in crontab sudo /opt/local/bin/port selfupdate
    sudo /opt/local/bin/port upgrade installed

Note that the basic utilities are already in MacOSX. And if you can purchase a MacOSX Server, you will get MySQSL, Postfix and so on with nice GUI to configure them !

Finally, some ships MacOSX binaries, more or less integrated. This leads to some forks, like Camino wich is a Firefox cousin or NeoOffice an OpenOffice twin.