Prestigious Committership in Sahana Project

If I look back it has been more than a year has gone since I join LSF as an intern, prior joining LSF I was a passive member of the Sahana community going through their discussions on the mailing lists and the code base to understand what are their main objectives of the project and how the system being developed. During my freshman year Mifan was one of my senior, where we were office bearers of one of the societies(intecs) in our faculty, whom I got to know about the Sahana project. Later I got to know that he was one of the founding members of Sahana project. During that year and the next I got the chance to attend to several seminars and workshops conducted by the FOSS enthusiasts in Sri Lanka. That motivated me towards contributing towards the FOSS projects in the world. Luckily for me I got this great opportunity to be a part of Sahana community and share my ideas and what I know for the betterment of the society.

I must tell you that the internship period I underwent at LSF taught me many things and it gave me an opportunity to explore into various fields. Most of the people I saw and met in the seminars and workshops which I attend was part of the this community and they all had a common goal that drives them forward, that is to promote the use of FOSS among the community (Specially the opportunity I got to meet Richard M. Stallman). The period of six months passed without even noticing, once again I got busy with my university work, meanwhile I tried my best lending my contribution towards the project. I’m happy to said that this week I got myself promoted as a Sahana Committer of the community, which is one of the prestigious positions to hold in a FOSS community project. I must thank all for their wonderful help and guidance granted in favor of me from the first day I join the Sahana community until to this day.

FIT Sumposium 2008

Although it is bit too late, anyway I decided to write about the one of biggest event we did at our faculty, which too place on 27th of September. This was one of the events we conducted to mark the opening of our new faculty premises. It was an academia type of gathering for students both past and present and the staff to listen to distinguish personalties of the IT industry in Sri Lanka on the theme of “Graduation, Entrepreneurship & Success” and many representatives of the IT industry were also invited to be a part of that evening.

Objectives were:

  • To create a culture of entrepreneurship among the students.
  • To learn through the experience of nationally recognized entrepreneurs.
  • To provide an opportunity for the students to interact with the industry leaders.
  • To create awareness among the corporate community about the Faculty of IT.
  • To broaden the knowledge of students on new trends in the IT industry.

There was a panel discussion with Dr. Sanjiva Weerawarana – CEO & Chairman of WSO2, Mr. W. K. H. Wegapitiya – Chairman of Laughfs Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Harsha Purasinghe – CEO of Microimage (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Mohamed Azmeer – CEO of ConceptNursery and Mr. Ramesh Shanmuganathan – Chief Information Officer of John Keells Holdings (Pvt) Ltd and the discussion was moderated by Mr. Peter D’Almeida – Managing Director/Chief Executive of N*able (Pvt) Ltd.

For the event IFS and HP became the gold sponsors, WSO2 became the sliver sponsor, BOC, People’s Bank, Virtusa and Interblocks was the co-sponsors. Digital media partner was the Channel 1 MTV and Printed media partner was ANCL.

I’m happy to say that with all our untiring and collective effort we managed to hold it successfully.

HUAWEI E220 on Ubuntu 8.04 with Dialog package

Recently I got to know through one of my friend that Dialog Telekom is giving a special Internet package mainly targeted for university students, and Dialog Telekom mentioned it that they’ll be able to give support for it to run on platforms such as Microsoft Windows XP & Vista(with some firmware upgrade) and Apple Mac OS (with some upgrades) but what really drives me to buy it although I’m mostly use GNU/Linux Ubuntu, because this connection give the me the freedom to experience high speed Internet connectivity almost everywhere I go(here at Moratuwa and at my home in Kandy). Compared with the other service providers its chargers are reasonable so didn’t adds up more trouble to my monthly expense list :-), As the initial cost I had to spend Rs 5.5K for the HUAWEI E220 modem, a deposite of Rs 3K and have to pay a monthly rental of Rs 1.5K for unlimited usage but once the monthly usage exceeds 5GB mark the uplink and downlink speed gets reduced 😦 , so I went ahead and bought it with my first payment I received from my part time work.

It was a small device where I can be very easily carried to anywhere I want to go and just plug to my PC and enjoy happy Internet surfing. It is a HSDPA/3G/GPRS USB Modem comes under the brand “vodafone” which gives upto maximum of 7.2MBps down link(thats far ahead of the normal ADSL connection) when we are in a 3G coverage area and for the rest it gives the facility through GPRS.

I was wondering about how I could configure this HUAWEI E220 modem to connect to Internet, so I tried several approaches found on the Internet and two of my friends who work with me at LSF helped me on this. With our collective effort we managed to configure it to run under Ubuntu 8.04 with a easy to use GUI based tool called Salutis Connect from Rudolf Adamkovič, and according to Ubuntu repository this tool is only available for versions 8.04 and 8.10. Similarly you can find another approach taken by Anuradha Rathnaweera.

Let see how it can be make it to run on your ubuntu box. Firstly plug in the HUAWEI E220 modem to your Ubuntu 8.04 box and open up a new terminal window(a bash shell) and type the following:

$ sudo wvdialconf /etc/wvdial.conf

Next you’ll see some results on your screen, it shows some details about the modem. Make sure that the system detects it as an USB modem first.

After that opens up the ‘wvdial.conf‘ file as a root privileged user (with sudo command) using your preferred text editor such as vim, gedit, etc.

$ sudo vim /etc/wvdial.conf

There you’ll get some fields commented, uncomment the ‘Phone‘ field and give the phone number as *99***1# and save the file. you may leave the Username and Password fields as it is.

Once you have finish with it type the following having the modem plugged.

$ sudo -s
# echo deb hardy main >> /etc/apt/sources.list
# aptitude update && aptitude install salutis-connect

Once the above process is finished goto Application > Internet and open the Salutis Connect. There select the first choice as shown in the following figure and click ‘Ok‘.

Next as shown with figure below it pops up a pane showing the progress of the connection establishment.

Once the connection is successfully established it tells you ‘ Wohoo! You’re connected, go ahead 🙂 ‘ so enjoy. More information can be found by referring this link.

Monitor your usage through a GUI

This application doesn’t provide the user to monitor the statistical details of it usage. It can be achieved by using the application provided at ‘‘ but this needs bit of a knowledge with compiling and installing C source code and some dependent libraries under GNU/Linux.

Please visit the site and download the source package called ‘he220stat.tar.bz2‘.

Next goto the bottom part of that page and there it lists the dependent libraries required for compiling he source code under Debian/Ubuntu. These libraries can be easily installed to your distro by using the following commands:

$ sudo -s
# apt-get install build-essential (this may already be there in your system)
# apt-get install ncurses (somethimes without this it may compile)
# apt-get install ncurses-dev
# apt-get install xterm

Once your have successfully installed the above dependent libraries extract the downloaded tar ball (tar xjvf he220stat.tar.bz2 ) to any preferred location and compile it as follows

$ cd he220stat*
$ ./configure
$ make
$ make install
$ chmod + ./xhe220stat
$ ./xhe220stat
– for a graphical view or $ ./he220stat – for a command line view

This is how it looks like on my Ubuntu 8.04

Latest findings: Recently I came across this link to deb file that helps us to install the Salutis Connect easily on Hardy.