Skip to main content


Showing posts from May, 2014

Strange problem on KVM VPS

This one for the X-Files. I have been helping a client migrate his web server from one VPS to another because he needed more disk space. His previous VPS is based on Xen, and the migration is to a KVM-based VPS. Everything was smooth-going at first. I installed Debian 7 x64, all the usual packages: nginx, php, mariadb etc. Easy. Configured and tested the setup. Easy. Then I migrated his database and web server over and asked him to do some business-side testing. That was when we hit an unusual snag. His PayPal IPN wouldn't work. At first, I traced the logs, thinking it was some kind of PHP code incompatibility. Nothing. The code will break at this point:    $fp = fsockopen('ssl://', 443, $eno, $estr, 30); and never return. I was stumped. So I wrote a simple test program that retrieves the HTTP and the HTTPS version of . Lo and behold, the HTTPS fetch breaks right at that point with:     Illegal instruction I looked up what that mea

Bluetooth headsets: Samsung HM1700 vs Plantonics M25

I had been using a Samsung HM1700 headset for over a year now. Recently, the Plantonics M25 was on sale. It looks a lot smaller, lighter and sleeker than the Samsung HM1700, it supports A2DP, it has long battery life, so I bought one to have a try. The thing about Bluetooth headset is that you can never tell how well it works for you from the specs. You have to live with it for a week or two before you can tell if the two of you are compatible, sorta like a roommate or girlfriend. So I lived with the M25 for a week. Samsung HM1700 Pros: Long battery life Great reception Cons: Bigger and heavier Ear loop is not as comfortable Plantonics M25 Pros: Long battery life Sleeker, smaller and lighter Ear loop is fitting and comfortable Cons: Too many A2DP dropouts for my liking. By that, I mean the A2DP stream will drop out for a second or two being picking up again. This happens when I turn or bend my body, pick up a tool etc. It happens with the HM1700 too, but muc