farewell, Austin.

This weekend, we drove back to Austin and spent an entire day emptying out the rest of, and cleaning, the old house. Monday, the guys will come in and start demolition for the remodeling.

With everything we own either already at the house in Houston or in the back of a truck, I guess this really was farewell to Austin. I moved to the town in September of 1996, to work for Texas.Net, after being one of the first ten employees at ioNET Internetworking Technologies, Inc. (ionet.net) – the first large ISP in Oklahoma. I leave Austin as the Senior UNIX Systems Administrator for a software-development arm of a large multinational company.

I’ll miss my friends and the people I’ve met in Austin – but I’ll also stay in touch with them via the Internet. I’ll miss a couple of really good places to eat – Ichiban on Burnet (for sushi or Korean food), Kiefer’s Cafe just off Metric (for lunchtime sandwiches), and Andiamo on Rutland (which we just discovered a couple of months ago) for very excellent Italian food. Since we’re just off Westheimer here in Houston, there’s plenty of new eateries to discover and find new favorites from. So far, we seem to be going to James’ Coney Island a lot.

It was good to get back “home” to Houston this afternoon.

its starting to feel like a house

On Wednesday, we had the power finally turned on.

On Thursday, we had DirecTV properly hooked up, and our new couch (in black, not brown) delivered, and I got the DSL connection up and running, along with the wired/wireless network and most of the computers.

Today (Friday), our new refridgerator was delivered. We bought a microwave on Wednesday, but it turned out to be defective and we have to return it for another.

Tonight will be our first real night in the new house.

let there be light

According to my better half, we now have power (FINALLY!) at the new house. Tonight I’ll get the network setup, and hopefully (if the DSL was installed as ordered) get back on my iMac G5. 17″ and a real keyboard will be a great improvement from using the 12.1″ iBook G4 as my main system for the past month.

OpenSolaris now Open!

Looks like the public version of OpenSolaris.org is now up, with the DTrace source code available for download under the CDDL.

As an OpenSolaris Pilot Program participant, I’m looking forward to the arrival of my newest test/build machine from AnySystem so that I can get my own build up and running, just like Ben Rockwood:

    Sun Microsystems Inc.   SunOS 5.10.1    CUDDLISH        Jan. 25, 2005

    SunOS Internal Development:  benr 2005-01-25 [workspace]
    bfu'ed from /export/workspace/archives
    /sparc/nightly on 2005-01-25
    Sun Microsystems Inc.   SunOS 5.10      Generic January 2005

    benr@betty ~$ uname -a
    SunOS betty 5.10.1 CUDDLISH sun4u sparc SUNW,Ultra-2

Ben has also posted a screenshot from his OpenSolaris workstation.

OpenSolaris goodies

Big news coming on the OpenSolaris front today. I’ve been a member of the pilot program for a couple of months now, but look forward to getting settled-in here in Houston and increasing my participation…


Got back to work today, and am spending the entire day unpacking the contents of my new office (we moved buildings). I’m so tired of moving from Point A to Point B…

the beach

Yesterday, we were tired and bored. Since it was only 45 minutes away, we drove to Galveston and spent about half an hour walking around on the beach.

It was my first time to “get sand between my toes” and walk around on a real ocean beach – this country boy hadn’t ever seen anything other than a lakeshore for the thirty years I’ve been alive.

I can see us taking mini-weekend-vacations down there once it warms up a bit. I can really see myself sitting on the beach in a folding chair reading a book or two.

You win some, you lose some.

On Friday morning, the movers showed up at 8am. We’d been up since 6am finishing last-minute packing and deciding to leave a few things in the house for now until a weekend trip back to Austin in a week.

An hour later, with the St. Bernard in my Kia Sportage and the cats in the Explorer, we headed to Houston. Got there around 11:30 and got the pets settled in; the movers showed up around 12:15 and had everything unloaded into the house in half an hour.

Due to a screwup on my part, the power wasn’t turned on, and Centerpoint Energy told me on the phone “We don’t start service, we just fix it if there’s a problem.” So much for the easiness of deregulated electric service! I got the iBook out of the truck to look for an unsecured wireless network to find some contact info. Found one network (which turned out to be right next door) that had WEP enabled, so that was useless. Found another network across the street, but it wasn’t giving out IP addresses and wasn’t routing to the Internet.

Finally, I found a phone cable, and discovered that SBC had at least come through and gotten the telephone service activated – my dialup account worked. The DSL probably works too, but I can’t check that until we get power. For once, I was glad that I keep the iBook with a fully charged battery at all times. After getting in touch with Reliant Energy over the phone, signing up for service, etc, I used my USB-powered flatbed scanner to grab a “copy” of my driver’s license, then used eFax (more than worth the $10/month) to FAX the information they needed directly from my laptop in the middle of my new living room, using the TV box as a makeshift table. After all this, I still had almost two hours of charge left. I’ve got to call Reliant back on Monday and make the $270 deposit they want (what a crock – I’ve *never* had to pay a deposit for utility service before, have no outstanding debt other than the house, and have a flawless payment record with Austin Energy.)

Around 2:30, the guys from Centerpoint showed up, made sure the gas was turned on, took a meter reading, then checked our appliances for us. Took about ten minutes, and they were off.

Until the power is turned on (Wednesday), we’re just going over to the house during daylight hours and finishing the unpacking, and I’m doing things like setting up the bed, assembling new furniture (including computer desks) from IKEA, and taking care of the pets. At night, we’re staying in the Homewood Suites, where I’ve been living for the past three weeks – it’s pre-paid until the end of the month.

We met the left-side next-door-neighbors today; they’re very nice people (and were the source of the WEP-secured wireless LAN I found while sniffing packets).