List of USB Flash Drives with Hardware Write Protection

A listing of the few remaining USB Flash/Thumb drives with write protection switches, with manufacturer links. These drives are useful when using computers of unknown safety/security. […]

Configuring apcupsd on Linux for Multiple USB UPSes

I recently needed to add monitoring of a UPS powering network equipment to a Linux server already monitoring one USB-connected UPS. Since the second UPS also uses a USB connection for monitoring apcpusd (the standard UPS management package for Linux systems) was not seeing it. This is not a fault of the software – it’s designed to work pretty much seamlessly with detection of a single UPS and does so, but autodetectin multiple battery backups would still require some level of manual configuration – at the very least, which one(s) are powering the monitoring system in case it needs to shut down? The solution is to set up udev rules to let the system recognize each attached UPS as a distinct device using the serial number of the UPS, then follow the instructions for managing multiple UPSes in the manual. Continue reading Configuring apcupsd on Linux for Multiple USB UPSes

Sony Vaio Z505 / Z600 Hard Drive Replacement

Here are photos of the process of opening my old Sony VAIO Z505JSK laptop and upgrading the hard drive. The pictures are linked to larger versions.

The pictures on this page should apply to most Sony VAIO Z505 laptop / notebook computers, as well as to the Z600 laptops since they’re the same (just renumbered for the European market). Even where the pictures don’t match, the procedure is the same – carefully disassemble, keeping things organized. If something won’t go, look around to figure out how it might be attached or fastened, don’t just try to force it.

Your laptop was designed to be opened and serviced by technicians without damage. That means there’s a way to get into it without breaking things.

You may not know the official correct steps, but if you think you have to break something then you’re doing something wrong or have missed something. Expect tricky clips and redundancy because of the need to balance between a sturdy laptop and an easily disassembled laptop.

Continue reading Sony Vaio Z505 / Z600 Hard Drive Replacement