Playstation 3 Arcade Controller

Category : Playstation 3 · (1) Comment · by Aug 1st, 2008

With Soul Calibur 4, Street Fighter 4 and Street Fighter 2 Turbo HD on their way I intend to build an arcade style joystick for my PS3 using real Japanese arcade parts.

There’s some great web pages describing pretty much everything you could want to know and more! I’ve also found a couple of shops to buy the parts from (here and here).

I’ve picked up some MDF and perspex today, more coming as it happens…

P.S. If anyone spots any funky arcade/anime graphics i could put as a backing on the controller link me up!

Backing up a website

Category : Uncategorized · No Comments · by Jul 13th, 2008

I’ve moved sofaracing.com from the current hosting onto my sofaracing.co.uk hosting. The thing was a bit of a mess and because of which I didn’t want to move various bits accross but I did have a pretty old (and ugly – thanks Tiki) wiki which I wanted to keep the content. As with most things a bit of google-ing revealed a useful solution… A nice bit of open source software called HTTrack will make a complete local copy of any given webpage.

Automatically backing-up SVN to a server

Category : MiniITX · (5) Comments · by Jul 7th, 2008

As I have a rather large amount of webspace I decided it would be a good idea to backup the subversion repository to it. This provides good redundancy for a SVN/computer problem!

To achieve this i created the following script for my Debian server:

#!/bin/sh
#
#  Description:SVN backup script
#
# The DATE-parameter tells date in format YYYY.MM.DD.
DATE=`date +20%y.%m.%d`

# The TIME-parameter tells time in format HHMMSS.
TIME=`date +%H%M%S`

# The BACKUPDIR-parameter specifices where we want to save our backups
BACKUPDIR=/backup_directory

# REPOS SVN
REPOS=/Repository_location
REPOS_OUTPUT=output_name_”$DATE”_”$TIME”

svnadmin dump $REPOS > $BACKUPDIR/$REPOS_OUTPUT.dump
tar cvzf $BACKUPDIR/$REPOS_OUTPUT.tgz $BACKUPDIR/$REPOS_OUTPUT.dump

HOST=’ftp.address.co.uk’
USER=username
PASSWD=password

FILE=$REPOS_OUTPUT.tgz
cd $BACKUPDIR
echo pwd
ftp -n -v $HOST << EOT
user $USER $PASSWD
put $FILE
quit
EOT

rm $BACKUPDIR/$REPOS_OUTPUT.tgz
rm $BACKUPDIR/$REPOS_OUTPUT.dump

exit 0

Actually using a PS2 guitar on the PS3

Category : Playstation 3 · (2) Comments · by Jun 2nd, 2008

The ANTCommandos PS2 to PS3 adapter I ordered a few days ago turned up while I was away on holiday. Did a quick test with it tonight with Guitar Hero 3 on the PS3… So far it works pretty much perfectly, there’s only two minor negative points:

1. The tilt needs an extra second or two to activate Star Power, the manual puts this down to a different type of sensor used in the old PS2 guitars (mechanical instead of accelerometer).

2. Holding down Start and Select on the guitar brings up the PS menu, this in itself isn’t a problem, in fact it would be a really handy feature except that you have no way of selecting left or right (up and down is done by strumming). E.g. if you go to “Quit game” when it asks “Are you sure?” you cannot select “Yes”.

Like I said these are really minor points and as this is just going to be used as a second player guitar there’s not really any issue.

As I don’t have Rock Band (yet) I can’t test that but it looks like it should work perfectly.

Setting up SVN

Category : MiniITX · No Comments · by May 24th, 2008

First things first you need apache2 and PHP.

Annoyingly when you first try “apt-get install apache2” Debian will ask you for the CD! Having already removed the CD-ROM this was a potential issue 😉 All you need to do is remove the CD from the source list, open the list in an editor using “nano /etc/apt/sources.list” and comment out the line with the CD on.

Now apache can be installed from the web sources. When done going to http://server-ip should show you a working apache page.

Install PHP5 and PHP apache support using the following command “apt-get install php5 libapache2-mod-php5 php5-curl php5-gd“. When done restart apache “/etc/init.d/apache2 restart“.

I used bits from this guide and this guide to install SVN and WebSVN. Also if, like me, you need to import an existing repository follow this guide.

Setting up Samba

Category : MiniITX · No Comments · by May 24th, 2008

Some handy links on setting up Samba here and here

Basic install

Category : MiniITX · No Comments · by May 24th, 2008

Having got the board up and running I had a few problems with the Debian net install. After the first splash screen appeared the installer must have been out of the range of the monitor as all I got was a messy splodge on the screen. Four episodes of House and a meal later I checked the installer options and found typing “installgui” instead of just hitting enter should bring up a fancier GUI than the default one. Worked fine!

Once installed I wanted to take the machine off some of it’s life support so I installed ssh, powered down, removed it’s monitor and the CD-ROM and powered back up.

I’m now configuring the new server from the sofa. The plan is to install Samba, SVN, TorrentFlux and anything else I spot that’s fancy.

Change Vistas MPEG2 decoder

Category : Media Center · (1) Comment · by May 22nd, 2008

MS thought it would be a nice idea to include an MPEG decoder with Vista Home Premium/Ultimate. Though it is very nice of them the one they provide is rubbish; it’s quite poor at upscaling and it has no hardware support so you may notice it being slow even with a dual core CPU and 2Gb or RAM (I certainly did!).

To fix this you can install your own MPEG2 decoder (I use TheaterTek which uses a modified version of Nvidia PureVideo) and run this little app written by this guy. In the case of PureVideo you can see if its working by checking the system tray when watching TV or playing a video – if a Nvidia icon appears it works!

Unfortunately this will only work for 32-bit Vista, if you bought 64-bit you’re stuck using the crap decoder until someone writes a 64-bit replacement that supports decoding hardware.

Enable Concurrent Remote Desktop Sessions in Vista

Category : Media Center · No Comments · by May 20th, 2008

There’s a guide here on how to enable concurrent Remote Desktop sessions in Vista (that includes Home Premium which isn’t even supposed to support Remote Desktop).

However this didn’t work for me, luckily I stumbled across a batch file which does it for you.

Auto-login to Vista

Category : Media Center · No Comments · by May 20th, 2008

Very handy if you have a Media Center with multiple users (which you will have if you enable concurrent Remote Desktop). Just whack the following in a command prompt:

control userpasswords2

Then untick “Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer”, hit OK and you’ll be prompted to enter the details of the user you want to auto-login.