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...so a whole bunch of system software has been updated (such as modutils and gcc) in preparation for a 2.4 kernel, which icculus.org now has. 2.4.19, to be precise.
The reason for the upgrade (besides being way overdue) was to add support for USB2.0 and Firewire (whichever works better, since I've got an adapter card with both interfaces).
The firewire/usb2 card will drive an external hard drive that also has both interfaces (I'm covering my bases, here).
The hard drive, in a roundabout way of explaining things, will be the new backup solution, since it's fast, it's flexible, it's portable, and it's fast. And it holds a lot of data. Did I mention it's fast? I won't miss that tape drive at all. To demostrate this, I ripped the SCSI card out of the server when I put in the USB2/Firewire card.
Nothing ever goes smoothly, though. I get the server up, start a backup, drive home. When I get home, it's not responding to pings. Drive back. Find the power off on the machine, and it won't turn on. Swap out the power supply, restart the machine, restart backup, drive home. Watch the first fifteen minutes of Footloose on VH-1. Server is responding to pings, but socket connections hang indefinitely. Drive back. Can't log in on local terminal (that hangs, too). Reboot. Drive home.
Best guess is that the Adaptec DuoConnect driver is buggy, or it's a hardware incompatibility. We'll see how it goes. I'll stress test the drive on my home machine for awhile.
Icculus.org shouldn't go down again, and if it does, I'm going to have to thumb a ride to fix it, since I've pretty much used all the gas in my tank going back and forth today.
Update: I think there's a bug in the USB2/usb-storage driver (or at least, an incompatibility with the Adaptec DuoConnect) that is exposed when you pass a couple of gigabytes of data over the wire. The FireWire ports seem to have started working somewhere between 2.4.19 and 2.4.20-pre11 on my devbox, so I'll wait and see if an official 2.4.20 shows up soon and try using ieee1394 for backups on i.o.
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