Saturday, April 30, 2011


One might be inclined to think that they are one and the same, pretty much. Well, not quite.

We had this problem whereby the SSH worked fine but SFTP not at all. See the following desription:

SFTP seems to fail for NIS accounts under OpenSSH 5.x

Well, it ended up being a little different. What most of those NIS-based accounts had in common was a particular customisation in their BASH startup scripts (.bashrc, etc.) One .bashrc was removed the SFTP started working again.

Moral of the story? Whenever anything that could have to do with the login procedure goes wrong it might make sense to just maximally simplify the login procedure - such as remove all customisations, for instance - and try again.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

SANE: fixing an annoying network scan problem

On our network we've got a couple of Canon PIXMA network printer/scanner/FAX devices. Some versions of SANE apparently get confused trying to scan them with "network discovery" activated. The xsane application simply crashes.

After some searching on the web I have discovered what appears to be the fix. At least the fix has worked on a variety of Ubuntu 10.x machines, both 32-bit and 64-bit. I haven's saved the sources I used and can't locate them again so whoever was my inspiration on this one - please accept my apologies for failing to credit you.

So, be it as it may, here's the fix. Got to /etc/sane.d and edit the following file: epson2.conf . Comment out the following line:

net autodiscovery

You are done.

Final notice: after yet another round of updates on a 64-bit Ubuntu 10.10 machine I noticed that even this fix is not necessary it seems. But on slightly different installations this tip may still be of use.