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