Oct 2013

Tue, 08 Oct 2013

Instant Camera Upload Apps on iOS and Android

Apple 'Photostream', Dropbox 'Camera Uploads' and Google+ 'Instant Uploads' - out of those one is clearly superior as it

  1. uploads on multiple phones to the same account
  2. uploads videos and images originals (including exif tags)
  3. synchronizes (= download) to a headless linux machine for backups
  4. works on iOS and Android
  5. works in the background

And the winner is: Dropbox!

The downside of not using the Google+ app is that it has to upload the same photo again (in limited resolution). But practically I don't think we share more than 10% of the photos we make. The other downside of G+ though is that at least on iOS it resizes photos. Also there is no easy way to download the images and you cannot use a different account (unless you also want to share the G+ stream).

Apple Photostream is a very confined eco-system, downloading requires a Windows VM with the iCloud control panel program (yeah, been there done that). For N iCloud users you need N user accounts which need to be configured etc. And then it still stopped working randomly. And it doesn't support videos.

posted at 21:00 | path: /apps | permanent link to this entry

Sun, 06 Oct 2013

Debian on Mac Mini (late 2011 model)

I just had a random hard drive corruption on my headless Mac Mini running Debian Wheezy. Restarting it dropped to a prompt. So I had to get out the monitor and keyboard to press 'Y' a few times. This made me do 2 things I had postponed for a while for the risk of bricking the system:
  1. Getting rid of rEFIt and instead use grub in native EFI mode.

    This guide was very helpful. Only I used the existing fat32 partition on the drive. This also allowed me to delete the existing MacOS partition, very helpful on a 120G ssd. The free'd 50G of disk space I subsequently used to...

  2. Make the root partition readonly

    I used the now empty 50G, mkfs.ext4 as ext4 (disk alignment should start at a multiple of 64M) and hooked it up as /var. With /home already on a different disk I could use the ReadonlyRoot article on the Debian wiki to mount my root filesystem readonly. Hopefully this will prevent any future corruption preventing the system from booting.

posted at 18:00 | path: /unix | permanent link to this entry

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