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Iwan's Blog

Implemented Features:

Date Implemented Topic
2010-01-22 20:34:32Scanning on the Thor (1 West) LNB is temporarily disabled while I'm moving the LNB on the WaveFrontier to Astra 3 at 23.5 East.
2010-01-22 20:28:16In the past months the Satellite Scanner was not running because of a major hardware failure, one of my DVB-S cards (Hauppauge Nova) was literally burning in my server room with a lot of smoke development...

Today I installed a Hauppauge Nexus DVB-S card on new my server which is also running another OS (this server has changed from Fedora to Debian), and had also to modify some of my C++ scanning source code (I don't know why, but the DVB FE_READ_UNCORRECTED_BLOCKS API call does not yet work on my new system).

Due to major lack of time I don't have the time to make significant improvements to this scanner in the nearby time, but I'll try to keep everything running and maybe even do some minor improvements on the existing service!
2007-09-05 23:29:20In the past weeks / months I researched various technologies that could be used on the new SatsSan site, although SOAP would be a great technique I'm still researching alternatives... I'll hope to make my final decision this month / year; my eyes are on a very promising alternative!
2007-09-05 22:36:00Due to a small ODBC (interconnection) problem with my MySQL database I couldn't place any news. Problem Solved!
2007-09-05 00:00:00By accident I really messed up my blog due to a faulty SQL query. With thanks to the Internet Archive I could restore all my blog entry date / timestamps...
2007-06-30 00:12:09After a long time of silence here an update: www.satscan.net is not dead!

I just returned from a 3-week vacation in Spain and in my free time I'm regularly working on improvements for the SatScan site!
As I've a regular (40 hours in a week) job improvements and additions to the SatScan site are unfortunately very infrequent.

Good news: I've made some good progress with a new database design in PostgreSQL and underlying C++ software, I'll hope to present my new site this year (or maybe in 2008 ;-)
2007-02-24 00:00:00After the migration to my new scanner server I forgot to migrate rrdtool and also forgot to create a NFS mount to my webserver so RRD transponder statistics graphs and still video captures were missing for a few days. All services are now back online!
2007-02-24 00:00:00Besides some other 'system bug fixes' I also fixed some firewall problems and added the new DVB scanner server to my Cacti / RRD graphs!
2007-02-21 00:47:44Finally a small update after a month of silence on my Blog!

Time is moving fast and I've had a very -very- busy month mostly working on other projects than the SatScan site, such as installing Windows Vista Business Edition on my new development PC (now running on an Intel 6600 Core 2 CPU @ 2.40 GHz.) and migrating all my 'old' development tools to it.

Due to this new system I migrated my old SatScan scanner (not the web server, but the system with the two DVB-S cards) to my 'old' development system, which is now running Fedora Core 6.

As the old SatScan server hardware was really at it's end-of-life (several reboots a week due to hardware malfunctioning were required) I hope my new SatScan server will provide a more reliable (Linux) platform for the scanner service in the future!
2007-01-19 00:00:00Today I did some research on various SOAP client libraries / solutions available for C++.

Due to the rich feature set (such as automatic WDSL generation from C++ headers and STL support), limited memory footprint (well suited for embedded systems such as the Dreambox) and good performance (benchmarks can be found here) I decided to use gSOAP not only on all clients but also on the server for all new Web Services to be developed in the future.
2007-01-17 23:45:08Today I've converted some old pages to the new SatScan CMS (Content Management System) and corrected a few minor problems.
2007-01-13 00:00:00The new SatScan site is online! Due to lack of time I couldn't convert all MySQL databases to PostgreSQL so some Internet pages are still generated in the old layout...
2007-01-05 00:00:00Happy New Year! Today I've installed and configured PostgreSQL on CentOS which will be used for the new Satscan scanner database.
2007-01-05 00:00:00Today I wrote my first PHP SOAP Extension. SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) will be the preferred interface method for exchanging information between the Satscan server and all clients in the future.
2006-12-31 00:00:00Created Fan Sensors and Thermal Sensors Cacti / RRD graphs for the new HP Proliant using SNMP and hplog.
2006-12-28 00:00:00As my WWW & database server are now separated from the SQL Scanner server (the WWW & MySQL server is located in a datacenter in Amsterdam, The SQL Scanner at my home in The Hague) I've had some performance issues regarding updating the EIT (Event Information Table).

Today I optimized some of the C++ scanner source code and brought down the number of MySQL connections from many to just two connections, resulting in a huge performance gain!

My EIT (EPG) data table should be filled again soon and I've put the days of history back to 7 days!
2006-12-26 00:00:00Today I've upgraded my firewall to Fedora (This system was running an old version of Red Hat for a long time...). As a result the video captures and detailled transponder statistics are now back!
2006-12-25 00:00:00Merry Christmas! Today I've uploaded some new photos regarding my installation of the HP Proliant DL-360 G5 server in the CoLo center of XS4ALL.
2006-12-24 22:13:10As my scanner engine is running on another server than the web server hosting this site I've created an OpenVPN tunnel which is connecting my server in The Hague with the server in the co-lo room in Amsterdam. Look here for some OpenVPN traffic statistics.
2006-12-24 00:00:00Finally the new HP server is placed in my provider's co-lo datacenter. The Satscan server is connected with an 100 MBit uplink to my provider's router, which is currently connected with 4 * 10 Gbit multiple redundant fibre interfaces to the AMS-IX :-). Installation photos will be uploaded later...
2006-12-24 00:00:00Although the installation of CentOS on my new HP Proliant server went completely flawless I've had some troubles with setting up an (temporarily) NFS link to my OpenVPN tunnel through my firewall. Due to these problems still image captures and individual transponder graphs are temporarily disabled.
2006-12-24 00:00:00During the migration of the Satscan site from The Hague to the datacenter in Amsterdam I've had some server outages resulting in missing statistics / Cacti graph data. My apologies for this! Despite these problems I've now a professional platform available to develop new ideas and host all these new services in 2007.
2006-12-20 00:00:00Move the SatScan web and database server to the datacenter of my provider located near the AMS-IX (Amsterdam Internet Exchange).
2006-12-10 00:00:00Finally I've ordered my HP Proliant DL360 G5 server with Intel 5130 Woodcrest processor!.The server is equipped with 2 GB RAM, 4 72.8 GB SAS Hard Drives connected to a HP Smart Array P400i RAID controller with 256 MB battery back-up for Write-Through operation.
2006-12-10 00:00:00This evening I attended the Colocation Business Event of my Internet Provider (XS4ALL) and decided to hire an 1U rack space for my new server. Here are some very impressive photos of XS4ALL's data center in Amsterdam!
2006-12-10 00:00:00Today I've signed a contract with XS4ALL, soon my new server will be placed in their data centre. Although my server is initially connected with an 100 MBit Ethernet uplink I've some spare capacity, after the switch are 4 * 10 GBit uplinks available to the AMS-IX. (upgradeable with dark fibre ;-)
2006-12-05 23:47:53In the past week I've thoroughly examined various 1U severs which could replace my old SatScan sever and will be placed in the co-lo rack of my internet provider. Finally I decided to buy a HP Proliant 360 G5 server with Intel Dual Core 5130 Processor (Woodcrest) with 4 SAS hard drives configured in 2 * RAID 1 mode.
2006-12-05 23:47:43As my Internet provider (XS4ALL) does have an 1 Ampere power consumption limit in a 1U rack space (230 Watts at 230Volts) I've done research on various server configurations.
2006-11-30 00:00:00As I've gained a lot of experience with the DVB standard in the past weeks I'm thinking about doing a complete rewrite of the C++ DVB Scanner code
2006-11-30 00:00:00Design of a new SatScan site layout with easy-to use navigation, XML capabilities etc...
2006-11-30 00:00:00Did some miscellaneous maintenance on the SatScan site, like fixing some broken URL's.
2006-11-30 00:00:00Maybe move the database from MySQL to PostgreSQL due to feature set / performance.
2006-11-18 00:00:00Did some miscellaneous maintenance on the RRD / Cacti graphs.
2006-11-18 00:00:00Although not really related to the SatScan site, added two sendmail E-Mail server graphs.
2006-11-17 00:00:00Added voltage, fan and temperature monitoring graphs for the Satscan server.
2006-11-17 00:00:00Added some really nice Apache web server statistics for the Satscan server. Thanx Rolf Poser!
2006-11-17 00:00:00Added various weather graphs for The Hague (The Netherlands) to the SatScan statistics page. See the relation between measured weather conditions and the signal strength graphs!
2006-11-12 00:00:00Due to serious performance issues on my server today I've decided to bring the EPG EIT (Event Information Table) history back from 7 days to only one day of history. When the system load is back to normal I'll maybe increase the available EPG history.
2006-11-12 00:00:00Today I've added some really nice MySQL statistics and performance graphs using a Cacti template from Philo Vivero. Thanks Philo!
2006-11-11 04:19:34Added MySQL Questions graph
2006-11-11 00:00:00While upgrading miscellaneous packages running on the Satscan server I've made some mistakes and had to reboot the server and correct some (SNMP related) settings. Sorry about some gaps in the graphs on 2006/11/11 ;-)
2006-11-10 22:09:27Changed time zone for EPG graph generation from local time to UTC
2006-11-10 00:00:00Added SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) and Signal Strength graphs for all satellites in the graph section
2006-11-10 00:00:00Added BER (Bit Error Rate) graph (although Bit Error Rate information is not yet available)
2006-11-06 01:30:04Added EPG (Electronic Program Guide) EPG table size graph with data from the EIT (Event Information Table)
2006-11-06 00:00:00Added individual transponder statisics (SNR, Signal Stength, BER and Uncorrected Blocks). See for an example the Canal Digitaal Transponder statistics. The new transponder RRD databases are automatically created when a new transponder is found, and all statistics graphs are 'live' printed on demand.
2006-11-05 00:00:00Upgraded PHP from version 5.1.6 to 5.2.0. Compiled in SNMP and socket support for use within Cacti.
2006-11-05 00:00:00Added network traffic graphs for the Satscan server & firewall
2006-11-05 00:00:00Fun with SQL - created a Satellite Content Statistics graph!.
2006-11-04 01:32:16The first RRD Graphs (Transponder & Service count) are automatically generated every 5 minutes.
2006-11-04 00:00:00Enable user sorting on table columns. Move from HTML to XML?
2006-11-03 00:40:35A start is made with capturing EPG details from the EIT table on PID 0x12. Although a lot of work is to do you can see EPG details (when available) on the service pages.
2006-11-03 00:00:00Add MHW (Media High Way) EPG for CANAL DIGITAAL (The Netherlands)
2006-10-29 00:00:00Maked a start with EPG data which is now displayed on the service pages (when available)
2006-10-29 00:00:00Added content descriptor types to EPG data on service pages
2006-10-25 00:00:39Removed still video captures & transponder signal stength graphs from Service & Transponder lists (improve download time)
2006-10-24 22:08:21Addition of a DVB-T card. This will also scan the available (free to air) services locally transmitted in The Hague (The Netherlands) through the ether.
2006-10-24 22:08:21Added CA (Conditional Access Information) to service page
2006-10-24 21:53:49Support for my Diseq switches (this will add 4 more satellites to the satellite scan, Astra 2, Sirius, Hotbird and Thor.
2006-10-24 21:53:45Automatic capture of MPEG transport streams and generation of JPEG still images.

'To Do' List

Date Inserted Topic
10-11-2006Store BER (Bit Error Rate) Information in the database
10-11-2006Have to do some UTC / GMT / Local Time (client) Date / Time conversions (on EPG data etc...)
01-10-2006Automatic generation of XML Service files in a Dreambox compatible format. This will automatically update the channel lists in the satellite receiver for my home cinema system.
01-10-2006Capture teletext data and store it in the database. Due to copyright issues this information can most likely not be made public, although some nice statistics could be generated.
01-10-20061000th's of other ideas ;-)
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