Tip: Fedora 14 and Dropbox

The current version of Dropbox does not behave nicely on Fedora 14 – the Dropbox update daemon attempts to execute code from stack. This is prohibited by SELinux (and rightly so).

There is a workaround (taken from the Dropbox Support forum):

  /usr/bin/execstack -c ~/.dropbox-dist/_ctypes.so

Let’s hope that Dropbox releases a proper fix for this problem soon.

USB to Serial drivers

Serial ports, a.k.a. RS232 ports, are no longer available on new computers and laptops. Many devices still use RS232 for communication (network equipment, data acquisition boards etc.).

There are several USB adapters that provide a “Virtual COM Port” using a special “USBtoUART” or “USBtoSerial” chip. Conversion cables containing these chips can be found online – but the documentation rarely specifies which chip is used! The Prolific PL-2303 chip is very popular, but a number of other chips can be found. Some chips are supported by the OS, others need a special driver.

Manufacturer Chip Linux driver Mac driver Windows driver
FTDI chip FT232RL Included since 2.6.31 kernel Download VCP driver Automatically installed by Windows 7
Prolific PL-2303 Included since 2.4.10 / 2.4.31 kernel Download VCP driver Installation under Windows 7
Silicon Labs CP210x Download VCP driver Download VCP driver Download VCP driver
? ? ?

RS232 information


Related posts

Updated 2011-06-01: Added links to Open Source driver for Prolific PL2303 under Mac OS X

Passed the RHCSA and RHCE exams!

My RHCE certification (RHEL 4) was no longer current so I had to re-take the exam with RHEL 6. I decided to take the 4-day course (RH300) as well as the exam (EX300) in one week but it turned out to be quite the obstacle-course:

  • Monday. The first day of the course: while waiting in Amsterdam for the trainer to arrive, we were informed that he had fallen ill – course canceled, no backup trainer available. Meh.
  • A couple of weeks later, the course finally starts with Sander van Vugt as trainer, someone else will proctor the exam (Friday). Things start to look good ;-)
  • Friday: while waiting in Amersfoort for the proctor to arrive, we hear he’s had an accident and the exam will have to be canceled. No backup proctor available. More meh.

Fortunately, Red Hat tried their best to remedy the situation and got Wander to proctor an extra exam on Tuesday. Pffff, what a journey…

But the good news: I PASSED both exams! Yay! Time for beer and BBQ, celebrations are in order ;-)