Switching from stock Debian Squeeze php 5.3.x to dotdeb’s 5.3.10 ’caused encoding problems

I switched from stock Debian Squeeze php 5.3.x to dotdeb’s 5.3.10 yesterday on a lot of servers. Usually a minor upgrade shouldn’t introduce any major changes, but in this particular case I’ve come across several customers having encoding problems. It’s related to the mysql backend, which defaults to utf-8 and customers having code encoded in latin1 (iso8859-1 or iso8859-15), that is: they’ve encoded their stuff in mysql in latin1. It’s an easy fix, you simply have to specify your mysql encoding when connecting via php, f.example:

$link1 = mysql_connect('localhost','user1','pass1',TRUE); 

More info at

Upgrade firmware for perc 5/e in Debian

Dell create easy install firmware, drivers, management utilities and such for Redhat. These seldom work in Debian, often because of the different package management systems they use (rpm for Redhat / dpkg for Debian) .
I had to upgrade the firmware on a PERC 5/E raid controller, and we mainly run Debian where I work, so I’ve poked around for a solution on this issue.
There might have been a solution with creating a floppy or using some Dell utilities boot cd, but I’m 300 kilometres from the server so that wasn’t an option.
Here’s some links that helped me in the process.’s solution didn’t do the trick for me, there was some script that really wanted rpm on my system (?) . I ended up with something like this:

# apt-get install alien
# rpm2cpio srvadmin-storelib-sysfs-7.0.0-4.1.4.el4.i386.rpm | cpio -idmv
# cp -a ../unpack_rpm/opt/lsi/ /opt/
# vi /etc/ (adding to this file these lines)
# ./sasdupie -u -s ./payload/

I then got the xml output which told me a reboot was required .

GPG error with apt-get update

I came over the error:

Reading package lists... Done
W: GPG error: lenny Release: The following signatures couldn't be verified because the public key is not available: NO_PUBKEY AED4B06F473041FA
W: You may want to run apt-get update to correct these problems

When running apt-get update .
The solution is actually to do a

apt-get install debian-archive-keyring

/proc/scsi support in Debian Squeeze

I bought a cheap HighPoint raid controller recently, it was supposed to support Linux. The driver compiled easily but the raid CLI utility which I need to check raid health status just wouldn’t work. After hacking at this for a while it was when I used strace to run the hptraidconf binary that I discovered the program wanted to read info about the disks from /proc/scsi . /proc/scsi has been superseded by sysfs in recent Linux kernels. But Linus and his crew have left an option “legacy /proc/scsi support” in the kernel config. The Debian developers don’t seem to think it necessary to enable this option in the kernel config for 2.6.32 in Squeeze (though it seems Ubuntu think it necessary in their config for Ubuntu 10.10 which I have at my laptop). Anyway, my solution turn out to be:

# apt-get install linux-source-2.6.32
# cd /usr/src && tar jxvf linux-source-2.6.32.tbz 
# ln -s linux-source-2.6.32 linux
# cd linux

And the rest is described at howtoforge .
The key here is to enable ‘legacy /proc/scsi support’ from the ‘scsi device support’ submenu .


I’m configuring rkhunter on a new Debian Lenny setup for production. The rkhunter that comes with apt in Lenny complains about Exim, proftpd, openssl, gpg and openssh being ‘out of date, and possibly a security risk’ . I assume it’s partly because Lenny has been around for a while now, and packages aren’t shiny new versions, but I do trust the Debian security team so I’m whitelisting the apps in question for now. The issue has already been discussed at .