While I wait for arch to update, I figure I'll write a post about my recent computer adventures.
I managed to get ssh working on that older computer from last post. I can now help my family out if they have any kind of problems with their computer and I happen to be at college (6 hours away). This plan will be, of course, complicated if they loose power and their IP address changes. Oh well... that's not too hard for them to get for me.
My latest task is to get their digital camera to play nicely with udev. In Arch, udev is kinda... temperamental. I'm not sure why as the whole concept is kind of over my head. All I know is that udev can act similar to hal in that it'll automatically do something when something else in the system happens. Anyway, when I tried to follow the Arch wiki, the computer was able to automatically detect the correct Camera as well as the correct model, but it was unable to scan the camera's memory unless I was root. In other words, there was some odd permissions error that was preventing the regular user from uploading/access pictures on the camera. I had to add a custom rule in /etc/udev/rules.d/ in order to have the permissions issue sorted out (and of course I had to run /etc/start_udev).
It MAY be the the camera is already recognized by the kernel... as libgphoto2's manual says:
Unfortunately, for some devices there are drivers both in the kernel and in libgphoto2, creating a conflict situation. If that happens with your device and you want to use libgphoto2 instead of the kernel driver, you may have a problem. In later kernels and current libusb versions , libgphoto2 will try to unload the kernel driver for the interface as soon as libgphoto2 wants to claim the device.
Perhaps the camera was already picked up by the kernel and, for whatever reason, its drivers are "better" than libgphoto2's. See, I didn't try the camera to see if it worked out of the box (which I should have done first, in retrospect). Oh well... you live and learn. I'll try this out the next time I'm at my family's house in person.
Also, their dvd drive doesn't seem to want to read dvds. It could be that the drive itself is bad. I'll try a few other dvds before deciding this, though.