Have a need, fill a need.
After losing contact with one of our remote servers, we decided we needed a way to do a hard reboot. We call it ‘cycle the power’. Turn the power off, wait 30 seconds and then power the unit back on. We have had great luck with servers running months even years without issue. Unless they are overloaded or overheated.
Checking eBay for over the counter power controllers, we found the IP Power 9258. Got our first one for less than $70, but most cost between $80 to $120. After looking at programming options and being a MAC Shop we figured it was doable. In less the a week we completed IPPOWER.app. Very small, very simple controller for the IP Power.
First you’ll need the IP Power’s IP number. Using an old PC we first configured ours DHCP, using the included IPEdit. (Read their instructions, which aren’t very well translated to english). We then used LanScan to find the device by its Mac Address.
After you have the IP Power’s IP number, just startup IPPower app, it will ask for the IP Number, administration name and password. The defaults are admin, 12345678.
You can now control the IP Power using keys 1 – 4, clicking on button 1 – 4 or sending “/Applications/IPPower.app/Contents/MacOS/IPPower 4” (4 being the outlet to cycle the power on).
We have also setup iChat to support cycling the power. See the attached AppleScript. Configure iChat to execute the script on message received. The script will look for “outlet1” – “outlet4” as a message. And cycle the power with prompting.
For Apple Mac: ippowerminicontroller
Nice perk of my current job is that we are allowed to spend time creating time saving programs. Within reason!
After getting an unusual number of reports of broken keyboards we decided we needed a quick easy way to test keyboards. Using mostly Apple iMacs, that is what we wrote the program for. BUT it works pretty good on windows as well (numerical keypad has issues though, but useable).
Spent less than a day creating the DIY Keyboard Tester using LiveCode.
Keyboard Tester Mac: diykeyboardtestermac
Keyboard Tester Windows: diykeyboardtesterwin-exe
After a small mishap, a user couldn’t read data off a thumb drive. Of course EMERGENCY!
Disassembled the thumb drive and under closer review I noticed a bend in the connector. Using a meter I toned out each of the four pins and found that none were connected to board. Noticed when the connector is bent, the internal wiring inside the jack break. Unsure if that is good or bad, but it could keep the board from shorting out when/if plugged into a computer.
Being careful to wire ground and 5+ volts correctly, I wired up an old usb cable from an old keyboard. (Test keyboards with [keyboard tester] and the ones that fail cut off their USB cables and go in parts bin.) Being very careful not to short any wires, solder cables as shown above. The solder pads for the USB connector could delaminate from the board, so follow the traces to a point you can solder to. Being very careful not to overheat anything!ds
When I plugged the thumb drive back into computer, the drive was mounted. JUST long enough to copy off its contents. (Pretty sure I had a cold solder join on the chip.)
— Before you plug repaired thumb drive in, make sure you are ready to copy data off, you may only have one chance. —