Debian on ZFS: It’s alive… It’s alive, it’s moving, it’s alive, it’s alive, IT’S ALIVE!

zfs_aliveLast night, r³ saw, as a world première, the first boot of the first computer running pure Debian with ZFS-on-Linux.
There definitely were some before, using third-party packages (including my other laptop), by this is an important step for native ZFS support in Debian.

I will probably be involved, in the coming weeks, in squashing ZFS bugs and making sure that Debian Stretch users get a smooth ZFS experience.
Don’t hesitate to drop by and ask questions if you are curious about ZFS, or borrow the ZFS books I added to the library  ;-)

The whole install is described here and on a post to the pkg-zfsonlinux-devel mailing-list.

All the drawers are belongmade by us


Our shelf next to our electronics corner, aptly named TESLA, is getting a bit crowded. Luckily we have our own lasercutter. Why not make drawers? After today’s lasercutter workshop, nothing would be more obvious. So I made the beginning and created the first. The basic idea now is:

If everybody who doesn’t know where to put stuff any more, makes just one drawer, we will end up with a cool and individualized shelf.

Everybody is invited to use the drawers in this github repository to get started quickly and add their own designs.


wpid-dsc_5227.jpgIn other News: H sponsored earphones, so people watching videos on Würfel, our pc directly connected to the room’s stereo, no longer need to play to an audience.

The long road to fixing our TAZ4 3D Printer


Around the end of Februar 2016 prints with our trusty only 11 months old TAZ4 3D Printer started to fail. Specifically the extruder just stopped extruding mid-print, while everything else was working along as if nothing had happened.

After some investigation, we discovered the problem, the extruder stepper motor was getting waaayyy tooo hot. Each time, about 10 to 15 minutes into a print, the extruder/feed stepper would reach 91°C and just stop moving. As no more filament was being extruded, prints were getting ruined.


Fixing It – First Attempts

First I ran a print with the filament removed, the filament tension mount relaxed in order to reduce any resistance the stepper might encounter. Still it overheated. Obviously we tried attaching a heatsink, but of course that just bought a few extra minutes.

My first idea was to trim the micropotis on the controller board and reduce the motorcurrent. Alas, there were no potis to be found. Then equinox suggested it might be a mechanical problem since everything was working fine the last eleven months.

So we took the extruder apart twice. Second time around an hour later, we discovered that the M10 nut of the bolt conveying the filament which has the big cog on it’s other side, was way too tight. Presumably someone wanted to improve things by tightening the screw.
The result being, that the washer pressed on the bearing and put the brakes on the extruder motor.

Additionally I discovered that the screw afixing the steppershaft to the PLA cogwheel was loose. Possibly the hot motor softened the PLA enough for the shaft to slip through and cause the motor to turn by itself.

Sadly, none of these fixed solved our problem. Our NEMA17 still overheated, with 90°C being far outside it’s absolute maximum rating of 60°C (Specs) and even further away from the 42°C operating temperature reported on the internet.

Read more The long road to fixing our TAZ4 3D Printer

Visit from Counter Culture Labs


Mary Ward from Counter Culture Labs in Oakland, California is currently visiting Graz. Today she gave a talk @ realraum about her idea of doing microfluidic mRNA assay in space. Those were some really great ideas and nice example of putting existing stuff together to make even more exciting stuff.

Since we already have a lot of experience with microfluidics and building space-worthy satellites, this turned out to be the perfect topic for our space. Beautiful discussion and knowledge exchange ensued and will continue on Sunday. :-)



Abend der offenen Tür (Linuxtage Edition)

Logo der Grazer Linuxtage
Am Freitag, 29. April, und Samstag, 30. April, finden wieder die alljährlichen Grazer Linuxtage statt. Neben vielen interessanten Workshops und Vorträgen ist der realraum auch heuer mit einem Stand vertreten.

Außerdem öffnen wir am Freitag ab 19:00 unsere Türen für Linuxtage BesucherInnen und alle, die den realraum mal “in echt” kennenlernen wollen.

Es erwarten euch gemütliche Musik und Sofas, realraum Mitglieder zum Fragen und Plaudern, Führungen durch die Räumlichkeiten, blinkende LEDs und kühles Mate.

Ihr findet uns in der Brockmanngasse 15, gleich neben der Neuen Technik (gleichnamige Straßenbahnhaltestelle der Linie 6 bzw. 26).

Schaut vorbei, wir freuen uns auf euren Besuch!


Es ist natürlich auch abseits dieses Abends jederzeit möglich, den realraum zu besuchen; auch alle unsere Veranstaltungen sind kostenlos.

Membersmeeting: Improving the space, holding events

Once again, one month’s member’s meeting is adjourned and a lot of things are now to do. :)

Lots of things happened.

Today we got the last necessary parts for our pneumatic tube system aka lasercutter/OLGA ventilation system, for one. There’s a good chance that after one year it will finally be completed this month. For another, the curtain got done. We decided to improve on the rings (currently zip-ties) that hold it, finally found matching rings and ordered them.

NOC reports that project “one-member-account-for-everything” has come closer to completion. Instead of suffering problem riddled and partially insecure LDAP and outdated Kerberos we started to develop our own GSSAPI-compatible authentification replacement project. Take a look.

Status on our ticket-system is not so good. We tested two but they are suboptimal and we remain unconvinced. Still, we need one.

Upcoming Events:

This Friday, there will be RetroGaming. NES, C64, GameCube, Amiga 500, SegaMaster, SuperNintendo, lots of fun! :-)

Starting next month, the Internet-of-Thinks / Homeautomation Meetup will become a regular thing. Every third Thursday of the month.

Somewhen after the Easter Holidays, there may be a Minix3 on BeagleBoneBlack install party.

GLT16 is coming up and we’ll have a booth and are considering organising some post-Linuxtage party or event.

Camp++ in Hungary in August now has a fixed entry on our schedule. Hopefully lots of Austrian Hackerspaces will take part.

Open bioLab Graz Austria – Offenes Labortreffen 28.02.2016

Buntes Treiben und nein, es ist nicht Faschingsdienstag im OLGA.

Nicht nur, dass wieder viele Leute uns die Ehre erteilt haben uns am Anfang des Semesters zu besuchen und sich das Open bioLab Graz Austria anzusehen, auch wenn aufgrund von Umbau-Arbeiten wenig Platz vorhanden war.

Für diesem Zweck haben wir Serratia und Pseudomonas- Kulturen aus dem Kühlschrank geholt und damit LB Medium beimpft, die ONC haben sich nice verfärbt.



Aus den Kulturen wurden dann Glycerol-Stocks hergestellt und bei -20°C gelagert, für Arbeiten im kommenden Semester. Die anderen Stämme vom OLGA werden dem selben Vorgang unterzogen.

Was für wissenschaftliche Arbeiten stets voraus gestellt wird und dem nichts-ahnendem Forscher immer ein Ärgernis erspart sind Kontrollen. Hier sind vier unterschiedliche Kulturen auf MacConkey-Agar ausgestrichen worden:



Links oben: E. coli K12          Rechts oben: Pseudomonas sp.
Links unten: E. coli XL1        Rechts unten: Serratia marcescens

Bis auf eine sind sämtliche Kulturen in Ordnung, nur E. coli XL1 muss erneut begutachtet werden bevor die Glyc-Stocks erstellt werden. Die Platten, von denen Bakterien zum Inokulieren entnommen wurden, sind immerhin den ganzen Februar ungeachtet im Kühlschrank gelegen.

Im Labor ist es derzeit etwas eng und chaotisch, da wir noch dabei sind die Lüftungsanlage fertig zusammen zu bauen, aber hilfsbereite Arbeitskräfte sind stets gern gesehen ;)

Python Usergroup @ realraum

On February 1 there was once again the monthly Python Usergroup Graz meeting.
This time it didn’t take place at the Spektral, though, as at the
last second (well, a week in advance…) a schedule collision happened and the
nice folks behind spektral had to use that room for themselves. Luckily,
within a couple of hours a new venue for that evening was found at the
Realraum! Big thanks to Michael and everyone else who helped here!

So, what happened? We had two talks! Horst gave a short tour through some of
nice string-formatting mechanisms you have with Python, something he had already
written about here a couple of weeks ago. If you want to learn more, simply
read that post and visit, which contains many more examples 😉

Right after that, we had a quick introduction into some of the awesome things
you can do with Pandas. Big thanks to Moritz for that 😊 You can find his
slides on our mailinglist.

We also had three visitors from the Vienna Python usergroup who come by
every once in a while and who have their next meetup incl. a coding dojo
on February 17 at the Metalab 😊

The next meetup in Graz will be on March 1 most likely again at the
Spektral. Official announcement will be made soonish on,
our website and all the other nice places you can find us 😃

Report on membershipmeeting Feb2016

This months membership meetup was more cozy than usual. Also a lot more productive, judging on what happened the days after ;-)

The highlights:

  • Easterhegg 2016. Originally we wanted to help out with cool lighting and take part as a big realraum delegation from Graz. Unfortunately tickets were quite suddenly and unexpectadly sold out. So there will be no realraum @ Easterhegg 2016 Salzburg. Too bad. Very sad. Some of us are going to Revision16 instead though.
  • Lasercutter exhaustvent and OLGA vents. Is finally going to be built. See upcoming post with pictures.
  • Curtain: Will finally happen. New curtain rod installation was finished on Wednsday and Curtain is scheduled for hanging on Friday.
  • The future of our internet uplink is in flux. Interessting stuff will happen 2016/2017.
  • Finances: Over the next months we will test and then maybe introduce a new formal system for financing stuff in realraum.