About Martino

Dutch. Married. Dad. Living in Italy. Apple fan. Owner of ZenaConsult

Solved: “[Firmware Bug] ACPI No _BQC method”, initial brightness problem when installing Linux

Tried to install OpenElec and Ubuntu on a mini-ITX Sapphire White system and every time I tried to run the installer, I got a blank screen.
So I booted OpenElec (and Ubuntu) without the ‘quiet’ option from the kernel parameters and I was able to see this error:

[Firmware Bug] ACPI No _BQC method, cannot determine initial brightness


My system is NOT a laptop so I don’t care about brightness. Searching for a solution on the internet got me nowhere; it involved recompiling kernels but that’s not very useful when I still need to install the Linux distribution.

But I found a solution! Forcing this entry into the kernel parameters while booting the installer:


… it solved my problems! So, OpenElec and Ubuntu are now installing without problems.

BUT, don’t forget to modify your installed distro to reflect the same parameter! If you use OpenElec, you’ll need to manually add the parameter when booting it, SSH into your box and remount the /flash mount as RW (mount -o remount,rw /flash), so you can edit the syslinux.cfg file and add the parameter.

Raspberry Pi (rPi) and Pi-Lite led board testing

Got this little gem: http://shop.ciseco.co.uk/pi-lite-lots-of-leds-for-the-raspberry-pi-0805-red/

And this python script to make it talk:

#!/usr/bin/env python

# Pi-Lite init part...
import serial
from time import sleep
baud = 9600
port = '/dev/ttyAMA0'
ser = serial.Serial(port, baud)
ser.timeout = 0

# And from here, the actual programming !

import sys

Use it like this:

python write.py "Hello, my name is Dick"

Cisco SG300 / SG500 switch SSH Public key authentication

Argh! I wasn’t able to paste my public SSH key into the switch’s GUI (keeps on giving me a very annoying error:

Invalid key string.
When a Key is entered, it should contain the “BEGIN” and “END” markers.

So, let’s try the CLI. I presume you already know how to handle a Cisco from the terminal.

– Enable ssh-server on the switch

switchxxxxxx(config)# ip ssh server

– Enable public key authentication

switchxxxxxx(config)# ip ssh pubkey-auth auto-login

– Add a user:

switchxxxxxx(config)# username martijn password SecretPassword privilege 15

– Then, add user’s public key

switchxxxxxx(config)# crypto key pubkey-chain ssh
switchxxxxxx(config-pubkey-chain)# user-key martijn rsa
switchxxxxxx(config-pubkey-key)# key-string

(paste your id_rsa.pub here)

– Check if the fingerprint is correct:

switchxxxxxx# show crypto key pubkey-chain ssh

Username Fingerprint
————– —————————————————————
martijn 35:ea:60:06:fc:d7:f7:d3:3b:d1:0f:10:63:f7:0b:02

Now try to ssh to your switch; no password should be asked.

SkyCity 802.11n USB 2.0 driver for Windows

Bought a very cheap DealExtreme WiFi USB adapter with this info:

Driver Information for Realtek RTL8188CU Wireless LAN 802.11n USB 2.0 Network Adapter / ECS H61H2-M3
Device Name
Realtek RTL8188CU Wireless LAN 802.11n USB 2.0 Network Adapter
Hardware ID
USB\VID_0BDA&PID_8176 <—- Device ID matches with our database

Compatible IDs:

Device Type
Driver Version
OS Support
Driver Date
Realtek Semiconductor Corp.

And finally found a working Windows driver:


Just wanted to share 🙂

Sophos / Astaro UTM – Limit and separate SMTP Proxy IP addresses

As a default, Sophos / Astaro UTM’s SMTP Proxy listens on all external IP addresses. Quite annoying if you have an internal mail server that you want to let your external users use for sending (authenticated) emails, since UTM will intercept all SMTP traffic.

Here’s how I solved that (only works if you have at least 2 public IP addresses).

– NAT one external public IP address to your internal mail server (so forward at least ports 25, 465, 587; use the IP address that you use for (example) mail.yourdomain.com. In this example I use (WAN – FW2)
NAT to mailserver

– enable SMTP proxy on your UTM (your UTM will now listen on all your external public IP addresses)

– configure SMTP routing to forward MX emails to your internal server
SMTP proxy routing

– SSH to your UTM and become root

– with vi, edit this file: /var/storage/chroot-smtp/etc/exim.conf

– edit this line, remove the # and enter your public IP address to reflect your MX record (like mx.yourdomain.com):
local_interfaces =
(I have 3 SDSL lines on my Sophos UTM box, separate each entry with semicolons)

– restart your EXIM service:
/var/mdw/scripts/smtp restart

Check you SMTP Proxy log file, something like this should appear:
listening for SMTP on []:25 []:587 []:25 []:587 []:25 []

Done. Now, Sophos UTM will intercept your incoming MX traffic (and if setup right, forward non-junk emails to your internal mail server) while the other IP address is useable for your users as an authenticated relay-server. is used directly by the mail server,, and by Sophos as incoming MX server.

Reverse DNS & Telecom Italia (Interbusiness)

Per cambiare il Reverse DNS (rDNS) di Telecom Italia (Interbusiness) da loro nome di default tipo



in il nome del vostro nome dominio / mail server, tipo mail.nomedeldominio.it, basta fare una chiamata a

800-018914, opzione 5

e chiedere il cambio. Tutto lì!

Dopo il cambio, potreste controllare qua se tutto funziona:
…cliccando sul SMTP Test

Debian 6 and slow DNS lookup & resolving

Just installed a basic Debian 6 server and was amazed about how much time it took to resolve any domain name; at least 4 seconds. But I found the solution: if you don’t use IPv6 then disable it.

Check the IPv6 alias:

grep ipv6 /etc/modprobe.d/aliases

This should give you this entry:

# alias net-pf-10 ipv6

Edit that file and change the line to:

alias net-pf-10 off ipv6

Then reboot. As always, YMMV.

VNCserver with GParted on headless Ubuntu server

I need to grow a disk on my Ubuntu server but only have SSH access to the machine and need GParted to do that.

Here’s how I’ve done it:

sudo apt-get install vnc4server openbox gparted
vnc4server -kill :1
sed -i -e 's/x-window-manager/openbox-session/g' ~/.vnc/xstartup

Open port 5901 incoming, and access with a VNC client. Right-click to start the terminal within openbox, and you’ll be able to run any GTK+ apps, including gparted.

Elenco streaming radio per Radio 105, RMC & Virgin Radio

105 Best 4U  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1213
105 Channel 1 - 105 FM	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1101
105 Classics		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1105
105 Hip Hop/R&B		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1113
105 Hits  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1109
105 House  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1203
105 Latino  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1209
105 Music Star Vasco  	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1409
105 Rock  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1117
105 Story  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1313
GROOVE 80  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1119
MALIBOOMBOOM RADIO  	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1201
MyRadio  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1305
Radio Bau & Co		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1405
Revolver  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1411
RMC  			http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1103
RMC 60  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1317
RMC 70  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1407
RMC 80  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1401
RMC 90  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1403
RMC Film  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1123
RMC Great Artists	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1111
RMC Italia  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1211
RMC Love Songs  	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1121
RMC Marine  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1311
RMC The Best  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1205
RMC Nights Story	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1115
RMC2  			http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1107
Virgin palestre  	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1315
Virgin Radio  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1301
VIRGIN Rock Alternative http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1513
VIRGIN Rock Classico 	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1307
VIRGIN Rock Extreme  	http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1309
ZOO RADIO  		http://shoutcast.unitedradio.it:1413