Nov 20

Setting up the root user in Mac OS X

For information on how to enable the root user in Mac OS X Mavericks, see this tech note from Apple:

And for doing the same with OS X Mountain Lion, see this tech note:


Nov 20

Backing up my BugZilla database

Now that I have bugzilla set up, my clients are starting to use it. It’s a very useful tool for logging bugs, feature requests and test results. The clients get kept up to date on what I’m doing, and I don’t have to remember every thing as it is all kept in the database.

That means that the database has to be protected from loss or damage by taking regular backups.

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Nov 19

Installing BugZilla on OS X Mavericks – Updated

Finally I have gotten round to finishing the install of BugZilla on OS X Mavericks (OS X 10.9)
and I’m pleased to say it is working well.

There were several hurdles along the way, but the main one which kept bugzilla from running was that the MySql library, required by perl to access MySql was installed in a different place than the _www user group expected to find it.

After installing Perl, MySql and BugZilla the main bugzilla install script kept failing with errors trying to connect to the MySql database.

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Nov 07

Working with UTF8 Encoded strings in iOS

I designed a digital audio dock for a major client. The dock accepts both 30-Pin apple devices and Lightning-connector apple devices, in other words almost all iPods, iPhones and iPads. The dock has a network interface so that it can connect to, and be controlled by, other devices, such as another iOS device. The device can get track metadata, playlists and track lists from the dock.

During testing we noticed that on occasion the track name, artist name or album name would not display correctly. For example, the soundtrack album from the film “Les Misérables” would show as “Les Mis√©tables”.

This is because the device providing the meta data is using the UTF-8 encoding mechanism to encode special characters, i.e. those outside of the usual 8-bit ascii character set.

In our code we had were receiving the 8-bit string and encoding it to an NSString like this:

_strDockAlbum = [NSString stringWithFormat:@"%s",pContents];

where pContents was a pointer to the 8-bit data buffer.

To resolve the issue was simple, thanks to the stringWithUTF8String method of the NSString class.
The code now looks like this:

_strDockAlbum = [NSString stringWithUTF8String:pContents];


Oct 21

Issues with ICD3 in Mac OS X

I’ve been using Microchip’s MPLAB X on Mac OS X for some time now, and really getting along nicely with it.

I use it for various projects and with a range of different hardware targets and programmers.

I’m using MPLAB X v1.90 with PicKIT2, PicKIT3 and ICD3 and until recently I’ve had little or no trouble.

Last week, however, I allowed the 2013-005 Java Software Update from Apple to install. This updated my VM from JRE 6 to JRE7 (aka Java version 1.7).

Everything seemed fine until I tried to program a device using my ICD3 debugger/programmer.

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