Finegan's assorted managerie of beeping junk.

I've been called out on LinuxQuestions a lot for having under my profile, under distribution, a huge list of basically the past 3 or so releases of the big 6 distributions. The principle doubt being raised could be paraphrased with: "I simply don't believe you have that many machines." I'll try to keep the following list up to date as much as I can be bothered, possibly so as to maintain my own sanity. What follows is a list of basically any machine I have root access to, which is more or less the measure of ownership that makes sense to go by.

[Update 2-15-03] Its been about a year since I first put together this little file, and it just keeps getting bigger as more wandering detritus makes it into and out of my closet of parts. Somehow the "farm" as its called on LQ, has become somewhat of running joke outside of my telling it. I gotta like that, even if I gotta hate the power bills.

New! 10-26-02 Newer! 2-15-03
  • Most of the Rack of Doom. Wurli gone, Ruprecht on the job, and the room is clean!
  • To the right of the rack, one of the world's most abused wireless routers. Now, sadly off the job.
  • The house's last manifestation of Gates influence.
  • The machines I have in my room that are turned on. The monitors match now, and I finally chisled out the plate block infront of my USB ports!
  • The machines I have in my room that are well... waiting for work. There are still a few left... plus Wurlitzer and the re-assembled Horatio downstairs.

    New Category:
    Machines that work, we don't know who really ownes, that live at my house:

  • Orwell Athlon 800Mhz 384Mb 640Mb RAM: Slackware 8.1 Slackware 9.0 Joshy's RAM, Sexy Nick's Dan's motherboard, Sexy Nick's vidcard, my hard drives, PSU, and old case, Saneesh's NIC, and Dan's chip. That's gear from 4 guys... Nick wants to take it and stick Plan 9 on it. I dunno, we'll figure it out. We figured it out, and now it runs The Clock and served this page. (Odd Note: 10-16-02 the / drive started giving us the "click of death", so Saneesh and I stayed up far too late and backed up just about everything, ever... and then got paranoid the fan was too small so we replaced it with an extra socket A that my closet burped up.[SIGHUP-date, 6-01-03: Yesterday starting at around about 4pm, Saneesh and I set to installing the big horking disk array, and after a few false starts and stumbles got the Clock updated to Slackware 9.0. Orwell now lives in a brand new case, and is no longer bound to 14.8Gb of disk, but instead, 155!]

    Machines that work, I own, and live at my house:
  • [update 2.15.03: Jack is back in effect!] Jack, Tyler, Marla, Spacemonkey, Bob Athlon 1.2Ghz 512Mb 768Mb 512Mb RAM: penta dual Uni dual Back to Uni-boot Dual boot again...; Win98(Fuck a bunch of Windows. Gone, gone forever! I'll just have to hook digicam up to my roommate's machine.[can't, fucking Vivitar never made win2k drivers, gphoto doesn't cover it, and after a week of fighting with Mercury running Win95 I just ordered a USB SmartMedia card reader.], Slackware 8.1 ,FreeBSD 4.5, Mandrake 8.2 ,LFS 3.1 Mandrake 9.0 Beta (in that order) Solaris 9 x86, AND NOW... Slackware 9.0 a really big Toy and testing ground for the Distro of the Week/month/eon, and now dominated by Slackware 8.1, damnit! I had a meltdown so now even Mandrake is gone. I've got to come up with a different Distro to put on it soon... maybe Debian again... Nah... ended up being Mandy 9.0 Beta. Back to solely Slack 8.1 as I yanked the little 2.8Gb drive for duty in Orwell. I also threw together xinerama with an extra 3dfx Voodoo3 PCI card, check out the screenshot. I yanked the ATI and the Voodoo and threw in a Matrox G550 I pickup up off of Its sick, really sick. I'm thinking of just throwing the Voodoo back in and having 3 monitors.[Nov 20-ish] I got a pair of gigantic matching 19-inch Samsungs from Rob due to some firesale. Oh its sick! [update: 2.15.03: Now running the wonder that is Solaris 9, patched to get a generic Tulip card to work, and again to get XFree wrappers to notice the G550, and finally again to get Gnome 2.0 as an option...] [Will the Updates ever stop??? 3-19-03: Slackware 9.0 came out yesterday, it was pretty pimp, but I had to get creative with the install as the modules for the xfs kernel were in /extra, and hence... not on the install CD. Also, where the fuck did Eterm go? KDE was almost pretty enough to make me run it... for more than the half hour it took to sort out XFree and the G550 again.] Oh my! [Ceaseless updates: 6-01-03, Added a Nvidia TNT Riva thanks to the graciousness of Grant, so now I have one of the few machines sporting 48Mb of video RAM over 2 cards and... this is just sick: three monitors!

  • Tenacious Pentium 200Mhz 64Mb RAM: Slackware 8.0, Slackware 8.1 Slackware 9.0, runs a domain. My first experiment with Qmail, which is now gone, and now its serving for my mucking about with iptables. (Yeah, uhm, Nov. 2002) T is now hard at work as the house's wireless router, again I think, its been a while. Now on Apache 2.0.45 with PHP and mod_jk, an odd annoyance combo to get compiled.

  • Blue Sparc Station 10 2x50Mhz 32Mb RAM: RedHat 6.2, I'm gonna try a Sparc LFS soon, er, maybe. Installed Debian 3.0r0, don't know what to say yet, haven't really had the oportunity to fiddle with it. With all of the other machines on the rack being tty only server crates I guess I'm going to slap fluxbox on it and let it be the house term. Oh, FYI, SILO still has issues with the 1024 limit.

  • Wolfwood Ultra Sparc 5 270Mhz 256Mb RAM: SuSe 7.3 OpenBSD 3.2, Unfortunately the only monitor I could get to work with this incredible PGX graphics card was a 15-inch. It only has a 4.3Gb drive, so I'm just using it as the Gimp station for now. Well, that and hosting The Clock's dot-org. (Sped Note: 10am on a Saturday morning with a cold I put NetBSD on it, found there were no pre-compiled packages, and then found a goofy way to install OpenBSD by dd'ing a bootable image to swap partition!?!?) Anyway, not only does wolfwood appear under the NetCraft survey, its now listed as an unknown. Nifty!

  • Nimble Pentium III 500Mhz 128Mb RAM: RedHat 7.2 Slackware 8.1 OpenBSD 3.3, i1400 IBM Thinkpad. This was a fun toy until the power charge pin bent out of shape and now it won't charge. Saneesh and I are going to take it apart this weekend and fix it. Then I'm going to try a couple weird distros on it. Nimble LIVES!!! 2 weeks of pulling it apart, borrowing tools, fiddling with IBM docs, and finally handing a 2 inch by 1 inch little board over to Saneesh to solder back together. Four and a half hours of re-assembly later and everything works. Okay, well I accidently chopped the volume wheel's cable so its a little loud at kde start-up I fixed the sound issue with the switch to Slack 8.1, a much happier laptop now. (Odd note: 10-17-02, a few weeks ago the power adapter cracked and once again Joel proved he is the solder ninja.) [Ed. Note: 5-06-03 I switched up to OpenBSD 3.3 and finally took a good hard look at the ports collection, and damn do I like it! It took some hacking to get Opera to work right, and the ports tree takes some of the fun out of things... but hey, it does rock the shizbit, one day later and I have a new Eterm, fluxbox, gaim, opera, bitchx, and its much less piggy on disk... and all the wifi works!]

    Machines that don't work right now, I own, and live at my house:
  • Printerstand, sometimes Shithead 386DX 16Mhz 4MB RAM: Nothing, as it has no hard drive. It can take up to a 500Mb, so I yanked the drive out of Gomer once and booted that... it took a while. Maybe I'll swap Gomer's drive in and use this as a print server for the Okidata later.

  • Horatio Pentium Pro 200Mhz 128Mb RAM: Slackware 8.0 Slackware 8.1, Came to live with Iron Mike and Saneesh as I stupidly moved out of DSL range. [8-5-02] Horatio is back at the ghetto-colo! Jeremy, my great old pal from Procyon switched the DNS while I was taking a diner break at Waffle House on the way to set it up. This machine served this page. I took Horatio off of the job. This is a great little machine, served us well for nearly a year, and I hate to not do anything with it... I guess I should finally get around to getting SMP to work, then come up with something for him to do after that. Alas Horatio, we've gutted him, put all his RAM in Wurlitzer for greater house file servage. His last drive went to Orwell for The Clock. We snagged its next to last ethernet card for Wurli also. One day I'll get around to tracking down a VRM for this machine and get it running SMP. (Jan, 23 2003) I might just "borrow" Wurlitzer's VRM shortly. Horatio is back on the job in Tyler's old monster full-tower case with a PSU Grant claimed was DOA, and 4, count'em, 4 drives, 3 of which make up the world's crappiest RAID-5 array. I put it together one night just to see if I could do it, took nearly an hour to parallelize 3 4Gigs.

  • Ferris Celeron 300Mhz 16Mb RAM 148Mb RAM: Mandrake 7.2 Slackware 8.1, A few months ago Wilson threatened to bring by a spare machine that his wife didn't need any longer. He didn't know the specs on it, or whether it ran or not. Imagine my surprise after I had tracked down one of those old-school pre-PS2 keyboards to plug into it that it wasn't a 486, but a Cely! And it came preloaded running Mandy! I think it may have been a printserver in a previous life. I'm currently at a loss as to what to do with it, more OpenBSD, maybe just some manic Overclocking experiments.[Nov 24th] I lent this crate off to Ben who's D-Link router is on RMA. I was kind of surprised to find that when I was rebuilding the little machine that I had put the two best network cards in the house in it. [update: 3-08-03] I yanked a card because the SMC I got from Matt went bazoo in old Ruprecht.

    Machines that don't work right now, I don't own, and live at my house:
  • Wurlitzer Pentium Pro 2x180Mhz 64Mb 196Mb RAM: Slackware 8.1 , FreeBSD 5.0-RCish House MP3 server Off the job. when my pal Grant gets off his duff and buys the 40Gig. Actually, we went ahead and got a 60 Gig. The project is on, 5 Gigs filled already. [Update 1-6-03: The HPT343 in Wurli had a transfer rate of about 1.4 Mb/sec, which wasn't cutting it, so I swapped the 60 into Ruprecht as well as the new 80. Then I dropped the 12GB from Ruprecht into Wurli so I could play with FreeBSD's SMP code... sometime here in the next few weeks at least.] (followup: 1-23-03, I never got FreeBSD SMP to run, it kept complaining about not finding the local APIC, maybe something odd about its micronics motherboard? When I take down the worthless RAID-5 in Horatio, I'll probably swap in the spare PPro 200 I have sitting around and see if I can get it going on Horatio's uber-common PR440FX Intel board.

  • Gomer Pentium 100Mhz 24Mb RAM: Slackware 7.1, SETI@home, because if Christopher Walken isn't proof of Aliens, then Gomer is going to have to fine 'em. Gomer is another shelf monster, couldn't really afford to power him against the AC, the aliens can remain hidden.

    Machines that work, I don't own, and live at my house.
  • Che Pentium 166Mhz40Mb RAM: Slackware 8.0, house NAT crate, and for the time being hosts The Clock's dot-com variation. Che hit the shelf with Horatio back to do the Nat'ing.

  • Muffin AMD Athlon 800Mhz 512Mb RAM: RedHat 7.3, my friend Joshy's server, colocated in my living room.

  • Ruprecht AMD K6-2 450Mhz 256Mb 128MB RAM: Windoze 98 Slackware 8.1 OpenBSD 3.1 FreeBSD 5.0-rc1 Slack 8.1 again!, This is my roommate's Compaq. I list it for completeness sake and the fact that I put half the hardware it runs on in it. I rebuilt this thing from spare parts after my roommate gutted it to put everything in his new crate. This might take over as the house MP3 server as Wurli's HPT PCI adapter isn't giving a whole lot of throughput. Until then, beats me. Okay, Venus wasn't cutting it with OpenBSD, I was having too much juggling with pcmcia NICs to learn anything, so I swapped up for a desktop. Thanks to Joshy for lending me yet another pci NIC. Ruprecht hit the shelf as well, a sacrifice to the xinerama gods and the balooning power bills. [12-22ish] Ruprecht became the grand FreeBSD experiment, back in effect... too bad I've gotten sidetracked on fiddling with xfs over the past week or so. [update 1-6-03: I made Ruprecht the house file server after I got sick of Wurli's pokiness. 140 GB of XFS recovered from a lockup in 5 seconds... oh I love this filesystem.]

  • Logic, Chaos Athlon XP 1900 (1.67Ghz?) 512Mb RAM: Windows 2000, Mandrake 8.2 My roommate's new machine and his first foray into Linux use. Of course he decided on Enlightment as a wm, so I'm a bit lost as to how to help him with every fifth thing. Right now the big issue is how to get mp3s to play under xmms from a read-only NTFS partition.

  • Earth Pentium 133Mhz 24Mb RAM: Debian Potato (2.2r3), Laptop, the other half of the above. Somehow these two made it back to my house after Saneesh's brother field stripped them trying to get a working CDROM from Mercury into Venus, who's CDROM was dead. He made a big nasty mess so I offered to throw them back together and now with a working CDROM I can install stuff on them! They have quick swappable hardrives and are identical machines so this'll be fun, except that in-kernel pcmcia never works for them due to their pre-cambrian bridge, so I'm going to have to get funky with the cheese whiz if I want to re-start the "grand wireless experiment". The wireless LAN is back in effect. Maybe I'll bother to war chalk my curb. (Nov 2002-ish) I never bothered to war chalk the curb, and Earth is now off the job. This little guy must have been the most reliable always on machine in my house for the past year, and is easily the one that saw the biggest uptimes; one got to 120-ish days.

  • Pain, Mercury Pentium 133Mhz 24Mb RAM: Win95 Slackware 8.0, I revived this machine, finding a 3Gb Laptop HD in the process (!!!), in order to offload the pictures from digicam. After fighting with win95 and pcmcia for a day I gave up and put Slack on the spare partition.

    Machines that work, I do own, that don't live at my house.

  • Diane Athlon 1.4Ghz (underclocked to 1050Mhz), 256Mb RAM, Slackware 8.1 , I picked up an ECS motherboard off of Ebay for about $40, slapped the "supposedly" burnt 1.4Ghz 266 FSB T-Bird that Saneesh had dropped off a month or two ago into it, stole some RAM from Tyler, dropped in the 2 4.0Gb drives Wilson dropped off, and hoisted a 17-inch monitor onto my shoulder and headed this kid off to work. I promised Cometa that the next machine would have a girl's name, so this serves as sort of an homage to Twin Peaks. It also rocks to have a dual-head machine to hack on at work... oh my, it rocks. [update: 5-2-03] I traded in a SCSI 50-pin 9.1 for a 68-pin UW, but couldn't get lilo happy, so I dropped in an 8Gb Seagate IDE drive and for good measure threw in my old 4x4x6 burner.

    Machines that work, I don't own, that don't live at my house.
    (I include this because among the Clockwatchers, especially those at the House of Chaos, there are quite a few machines that just don't have a purpose right now, or if we just ask the owner, they get lent out. The large reson they're not doing anything right now is that a pile of them just got back from running my Wireless LAN.)
  • Cartman Pentium 2 233Mhz 196Mb RAM: Slackware 8.1, This is Wayne's monster that I helped him set up one night to be his house Samba file server, domain server for Lorigami, and a PostgreSQL machine for a class project of his. I got Postgre compiled and installed and then I stepped slowly back from the databasing.

  • Morphy AMD K6-3 500Mhz 128Mb RAM: RedHat 7.2 Slackware 8.1 (Dec 02: Slackware released some patch .tgz's with XFree86 4.2.1 which finally supports this thing's crap video card, hence the upgrade to Slack), Compaq Presario 1200 notebook. A pseudo-perma loaner from my friend Rob who took pity on me when Nimble went kazoo. I dragged this thing just about everywhere and used the hell out of it, before I fixed Nimble, so now Rob said it was cool to continue the loan onto Nick. Thanks Rob :)

  • Jupiter Pentium 75Mhz 16Mb RAM: Mandrake 8.1, Laptop, wouldn't boot a 2.2 kernel, no CDROM, so I did an NFS install of Mandy via Nimble. I could never get X to work, but it was fun fighting with it. It also has a twin, Saturn, but I never bothered trying to get anything on that.

  • Apology/Entropy Powerbook G3 400Mhz 256MB RAM: Mac OS9, LinuxPPC 2000, Bob's old laptop, the Toned Mac. The power adapter on it broke, as is typical with laptops, heck it happened to me too, look at Nimble from above. So after a week or so of fiddling with it, two solder jobs (thanks Joel), and a bunch of googling, I was finally able to root Chris's old Linux partition. I didn't find anything, well aside from the source trees to 4 kernels.

  • Venus Pentium 133Mhz 24Mb RAM: Slackware 8.0 OpenBSD 3.1, Laptop, part of the great neurotic wireless experiment, and now my first OpenBSD experiment. What in the hell is a ports tree anyway? (er... Nov 2002) This got loaned out to Grant, not the Clockwatcher Grant, the other one. I still have the OpenBSD hard drive. I think the one it has now is Win95+Slackware 8.0

    Of the above there is a few I didn't mention as they don't live at my house, are really not functional, parts, etc. For instance the 3 laptops listed last are named after planets as there used to be 9 of them! There is a Pentium something, ready to go in Saneesh's machine room, but we just haven't bothered with it yet. Basically, if you're reading this you probably have a parts closet from hell too, and like me could throw together a working machine given a mobo and a chip. Most of these that don't have jobs are installation toys as I still haven't found the distro I really like.

    accurate as of June 1st, 2003