How To: Fix Eye of Gnome / Cairo crashes when loading large images

If Eye of Gnome is crashing when attempting to load large images (think 10MB and up), you can typically fix it by modifying the kernel SHM (shared memory) settings – in this case upping the max shared memory to 512MB thus:

Try adding the following to /etc/sysctl.conf and run ‘sysctl -p’ or reboot:

Source: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/cairo/+bug/1241752/comments/4

This worked for me, so hopefully it’ll work for you also.

Cheers!

How To: Fix Intel 8260 (rev 3a) slow / rubbish wireless issues in Linux

My laptop has an Intel Corporation Wireless 8260 (rev 3a) wireless card. It says so right in the lspci -v output:

However, in Linux it’s been dropping out and going slow and all sorts of rubbish. Looking in dmesg you can typically see stuff like (edited):

So can we fix it? Like Bob the Builder, yes we can – but it’s a two-step…

Part 1 – Kernel Modules

The 8260 card uses the iwlwifi kernel module, and the microcode for that is stored in /lib/firmware.

Specifically, you’re looking for the files: iwlwifi-8000C-SOME_NUMBER.ucode.

So for example, I see the following:

The kernel seems to pick the highest number in the 8000C range, so it’ll pick the 8000C-22 variant. Only this is borked. To revert to the previous 21 revision, simply rename the file extension of the 22 version to something different, for example:

However, at least in my experience, this isn’t enough to stop the module crash/restart issues – so we need to…

Part 2 – Disable Wireless N

If I just do the above, I still get issues in dmesg where the wireless card’s crashing and resetting itself – so to bypass the failing code, we need to disable wireless N (and only use B/G). Sure, this is going to be slower than N, but it’s going to be faster than a borked version of N – so off we go…

The parameters to the iwlwifi module include one called 11n_disable – and to set that on boot we need to have a /etc/modprobe.d folder (create the directory if necessary), then into that put a file with any name ending in .conf such as iwlwifi.conf (makes sense, right?) with the following contents:

Once that’s in and saved, reboot and your wireless should work properly again – no dmesg crash data, no slow-downs, no bullshit.

There are actually a few different values that can be used, but “1” works for me. The array of valid values for the 11n_disable property can be seen by entering:

And the current settings can be checked by hitting:

With the 21 revision of the microcode and wireless-N disabled you should find your wireless card now works properly. Huzzah!

Misc

You may want to know that I did this on an Arch Linux system (kernel: 4.8.13-1-ARCH linux-firmware: 20161005.9c71af9-1), and that I also set my regulatory authority code which controls allowable wireless frequencies/channels (via installing the crda package and setting the config to my local country, which is Australia, so “AU” – further reading: https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Wireless_network_configuration#Respecting_the_regulatory_domain) – although I’m not sure if changing the regulatory domain actually did anything to the above fix instructions. Thought I’d mention it all the same.

Cheers!

How To: Stop Windows 10 asking for feedback

Getting stuff like the following pop up while you’re trying to work?

How likely are you to recommend Office to a friend or colleague?

i.e.

microsoft-feedback

Frick outta here, likely…

To disable go to:
Settings | Feedback & diagnostics | Windows should ask for my feedback: and change the dropdown option to Never.