Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Changing hostname - Ubuntu Linux

Continuing my noob-ness with Ubuntu, so far I have a Sony P-III laptop and a CTX K6/2 desktop running Ubuntu 6.06 on the home office network.

Connecting to my router revealed that both machines had their DHCP IP addresses, but the "client hostname" was blank. I found out that in some systems, the hostname is assigned by the DHCP server, but not in my case. So "somewhere" there was a configuration file that needed tweaking. The file itself is:


...but you need administrator permission to edit the file (the root account is disabled in Ubuntu) so you have to open a Terminal window and use this:

sudo gedit /etc/dhcp3/dhclient.conf

...and then supply the administrative password when prompted.

The .conf file is full of sample commands, mostly commented-out with a # pound sign. So all I had to do is find the sample line:

#send host-name "andare.fugue.com"

...and change it to this for the Sony VAIO:

send host-name "vaio"

...and after saving the file, and a reboot (to refresh the DHCP), the hostname appeared in the DHCP client table on the router. Hurray!

Friday, September 01, 2006

Thunderbird Rocks!

I needed to set up email capability for the customer's POS station, but alas we did not have an extra MS-Office license to install Outlook. Hmmm.

Since Outlook Express is free that was the first consideration; as it turned out OE could send but not receive emails from Exchange - which in this case was just fine with the customer.

However, we quickly found that you can't press Print Screen and then paste the contents of the clipboard into an OE message; you'd have to save the image as a file and then attach it.

Once again, open source to the rescue. I downloaded & installed the Mozilla Thunderbird email client, which can communicate with both Exchange and the Print Screen button.