February 19, 2018
by dhoytt

Newly Planted Vegetables Covered Greenhouse Style

Recently planted vegetables covered not only because we are in below freezing overnight conditions but I already had some plans trying greenhouse type enclosures this season. The materials were already around the house so I just put them to use and only had to pick up a little more garden greenhouse mesh. I am still planning an official greenhouse and also shade for area for delicate plants that don’t do well in the Sacramento heat for later in the year.

February 17, 2018
by dhoytt

2018 Vegetable Garden Starting Early Looking Good

With this unexpected warm spell I decided to get my garden ready. I was going to try some greenhouse techniques for the cold days of winter anyway so I just prepped the whole garden.

Would have been done last week but my rototiller needs a tuneup. Couldn’t get in touch with my small engine repair guy the past week and a half so I picked up a used rototiller off Craigslist for a great price that was a little rough and missing non-critical parts like air filter and pulley cover. I still dropped off the other rototiller after hearing back from my small engine guy then finished the garden with my recently purchased rototiller.

This year I did not dig up my collard greens or rosemary just turned the soil around those plants. I also replanted my Swiss chard and sage after turning the soil plus some roots and stem systems from , eggplant, some pepper plants and purple basil that seemed to have life in the stems and roots to see if they come back like rose bushes or a tree that has been cut back.

Planted some new lettuce, mustard greens, Swiss chard, stevia, a new eggplant, and Roma tomatoes (not sure why I got romo tomatoes I prefer other varieties). Tomorrow I plant some more items that start well this time of year for Northern California valley. Some items like the mustard greens can’t handle the valley heat once it starts.

I may implement some greenhouse techniques for some vegetables.

Anyway here’s some pictures of my 2018 Vegetable garden progress!:


January 22, 2018
by dhoytt

Updated WordPress After Troubleshooting Site Going Down

Well my site went down after I made some local network changes on my switches to get better local throughput on my switches to take advantage of my new Gigabit internet speed that was looking slow on my workstations in my computer room. I ended up tracing down the issue on my Windows 10 and Fedora 26 workstations to a port on one of my Netgear switches and corrected that got the throughput from 95 mbps to 885 mbps with my tests on those workstations after the change.

I even made changes of the network port on my XenServer host resulting in a 25-1 ratio performance improvement for my virtual systems and websites. The changes got my streaming server up to the proper up and down speeds as well to take advantage of the new Gigabit ISP speeds.

All was good I went downstairs to get something to eat clicked on my website while it was heating up my food from my laptop and my website wasn’t responding. Went upstairs and my XenServer host was fluctuating from available to unavailable on the XenServer console. The whole time I could ping my Xenserver ip address and all NIC’s showed up on my XenServer hosts. I tried booting into rescue CD from Centos on my VM and it didn’t see any Linux partitions and fdisk showed no disks!

Then saw I needed a disk repair on my Storage Repository that didn’t work then I found I knocked the power off of my disk array where it connected to my UPS battery backup I powered up my disk array  got my connections back up but for some reason my XenServer hosts didn’t pick up until I rebooted the XenServer host. After my sites came back up I went to eat, noticed new WordPress version so in between  bites updated to the latest WordPess version.

I really need to spend some more time in my computer room\office to do some wire management and redesign!

    January 20, 2018
    by dhoytt

    Changed ISP Service to AT&T Gigabit Plus Domain Static IP Addresses

    Well today I changed ISP’s, away from Consolidated Communications  100mb up and down to AT&T‘s gigabit service up and down. I have been using Consolidated in some form since 2000 or 2001 when they were Winfirst except a brief moment (5 months) when they weren’t in my current subdivision which was just starting. When I moved to my current address they were Surewest and I had the property management company for our HOA at that time persuade them to enter our subdivision early when there were only about 20 houses here. I always had my static ip’s through them as well.

    Now I’m on AT&T’s Gigabit internet service and have changed my static ip’s to their offerings and even though I just pointed to my domain to my new static ip addresses about 1 hour ago on GoDaddy as of this posting the DNS caches are propagating and updating already fairly quickly!

    Speed tests seem to be right on hit and the technician who came out was helpful skilled and accommodating for a demanding person like me as was the support person I talked to about my static ip addresses configuration. The technician even converted a few of my telephone wall jacks from phone to twisted pair since I have category 5 Ethernet cable already running throughout my house as one of my requested upgrades when the house was built. The technician also terminated each end of  the cable I had going to each room and connected them to a multi-port 1 GB switch I had lying around! Now I have 1 GB LAN connections in kitchen, den, hallway and the other rooms I will switch out the wall plates from telephone 2 x2  pair to Ethernet twisted pair  myself!

    My servers seem fine and so far everything is great on my new 1GB ISP serving!!!


    December 6, 2017
    by dhoytt

    More Updates

    A plethora of updates this weekend and tonight. Over the weekend I updated my Windows 10 Workstation, laptop and gaming system. I actually had to roll back the gaming system due to some flickering on my LG 60PB6650 which I’ll look deeper into when I have more time. Tonight I updated my web server, and my system that has my IceCast stream relay system both run Linux Centos 7. I also updated my SAM Broadcaster streaming software to the latest version as well as my WordPress CMS/Blog to the latest version and Fedora 26 Linux workstation.

    October 8, 2017
    by dhoytt

    Found Delicious New Recipe for Eggplants with Grits 

    Looking for a new way to eat eggplants from my garden and I wanted to incorporate grits I found a terrific recipe @ https://eatsimplefood.com/roasted-eggplant-peppers-and-feta-over-polenta/ . This made the perfect taste combination with my Traeger wood fired whole chicken and baked beans. I believe this eggplant dish was meant to be vegetarian but it rocked as a side dish!

    I didn’t follow the recipe exactly since I didn’t have some of the ingredients but some of the substitutions and additions added to the overall meal taste.

    My substitutions were, strawberries instead of cherry tomatoes, added olives, didn’t have mushrooms or nuts and didn’t want to go to the store, plus added havarti cheese to grits as they cooked towards the end.

    The olives, some rosemary and basil I lightly sautéed in butter and olive oil separately then spead that over the whole dish and then topped it all off with blue cheese.

    Anyway follow the recipe @ https://eatsimplefood.com/roasted-eggplant-peppers-and-feta-over-polenta/ and put your twist on it.

    Here are some pictures of the meal that don’t do justice to the tastes that blended so well with my wood smoked chicken.

    Plated food ready to eat and watch last half of NFL Sunday late game.

    From near to far peppers from garden roasted with rosemary from garden, mixed with olives, rosemary. Roasted eggplant, strawberries, with basil and rosemary, grits and baked beans.

    Wood smoked chicken from Traeger pellet grill using pecan and apple wood.

    Baked beans, strawberries with basil and rosemary, grits with milk and havarti cheese.

    Peppers, olives rosemary

    Eggplants ready to be roasted.

    Cut eggplant

    Blurry picture of  cut peppers and strawberries.

    Busy kitchen counter showing recently picked basil,rosemary and sage in foreground.

    September 30, 2017
    by dhoytt

    Updates Galore Tonight

    Tonight I updated the OS of my workstations, virtual servers,  physical servers, streaming software SAM Broadcasting from Spacial Audio and WordPress. My I started with my workstations and then my virtual servers including my Centos 7 web server that I run my blog on.

    Then moved on to update my streaming media server which is W2012 R2. Right after that I updated my SAM Broadcaster software and my WordPress blogging\CMS software.

      September 12, 2017
      by dhoytt

      Perfect 100 Degree Evening In Attic with AC Then Garden Planting 

      Spent the evening first in the attic where my central air units blower was ground to a stop then, in the garden planting some new mature tomato plants.

      This was was the second time in 5 weeks I had major issues with my AC unit. The prior issue end of July was my external AC units fan that cools the compressor had stopped. In July I was able to troubleshoot that to a capacitor issue that is common with AC external units. In July I purchased the capacitors and a relay unit with a friend who has a contractors license. Ended up replacing 2 capacitors and a relay unit.

      Today I ended up finding the issue was the blower had somehow slipped to the bottom of the shaft and was scraping the bottom of its enclosure. At the top there’s a brace that has 3 places the fan hangs from and 2 of the 3 screws were loose so I tightened them.

      The fan unit of the blower was still scraping the bottom of the enclosure so I loosened the screw/pin or whatever its called on the shaft moved it up and tightened it.

      The blower shaft is like a half- moon D shaft with the square screw\pin on the flat portion. Thank goodness I could get to it from the part of the attic where it had the most room and a nice platform to layout on.

      Still at one point I had one finger pinned between 2 sharp fan blades and the side of the sharp enclosure with the fan digging into my flesh and my other arm on the other side of my body. I was able to carefully and slowly reposition without losing flesh or a fingernail which seemed inevitable at one point.

      To get the clearance to tighten the fan on the right spot I had to use my ratchet wrench as a spacer between the fan and its enclosure.

      On top of that I also had to pickup all my pieces of my 155 piece tool case I had dropped!

      After all of that I was going to leave the 3 tomato plants I had picked up Sunday and intended to plant first thing this evening for another day. I was pretty riled up from the AC trying to get me again so I decided I wouldn’t let that stop my plans got my lantern and spot light plus shovel and planted my tomatoes!

      Now I hope I’m ready for the next AC surprise and I have part of my secondary plants planted for our late California gardening season we have if you are prepared.

      July’s pictures of capacitors/relays I replaced  several weeks ago above. Realizing I never took the finished photo.

      Blower unit in picture above where I made the adjustments. Fan was firm to the bottom when I checked.

      Other side of unit in the attic.

      The entire unit with covers off.

      New tomato plant number 1.

      New tomato plant number 1 again,

      New tomato plant number 2.

      New tomato plant number 3.

      Me nice and grimy about to clean up after washing hands

      Still nice and grimy thinking I’m gonna hit the pool for a quick dip to relax from this craziness that could have had serious fall out from being a fire hazard with seized motor, plus those costs of replacing the motor, adding to heat stress on my computer workstations and my servers.

      Lessons I have learned is don’t ignore little sounds or other signs of equipment variances it saves a lot of money in the long run and do your best to fix it right and gain a true understanding of why something isn’t working so its no longer a mystery. Also document which I have found my blog useful for. Many times I’m finding myself searching my blog for past computer system fixes and I have a few listed but not nearly enough,