About Alexander Odhiambo

Computer Scientist


This past weekend while debugging my openerp module i changed permissions of my etc folder recurssively by mistake using chmod -R 777 /etc, when my computer restarted i could not use sudo anymore and could not start my openerp server. After trying options in recovery mode to no avail i resolved to formatting the whole machine fortunately my USB could not boot and i had to go back to recovery mode where after trying alot of commands with my colleague Rayyidh we ended up in the grub Terminal ūüė¶ i knew it was the end of my database and projects but this is how we sorted it.
To recover from the GRUB i user the following code.
set prefix=(hdX,Y)/boot/grub ( where X and Y are your boot partitons )
set root=(hdX,Y)
insmod /boot/grub/linux.mod
linux /vmlinuz root=/dev/sdXY ro
initrd /initrd.img

To get my sudo back i changed sudoer file permissions with the following code
chown root:root /etc/sudoers
chmod 440 /etc/sudoers
chown -R root:root /etc/sudoers.d
chmod 755 /etc/sudoers.d
chmod 440 /etc/sudoers.d/*

Thanks to the contributions on ubuntu forum



Download and install Oracle‚Äôs public key. danesh@python:~$ wget -q http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian/oracle_vbox.asc -O- | sudo apt-key add – 2. Create a repo file for Virtualbox danesh@python:~$ sudo -s echo “deb http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian precise contrib” >> ~/virtualbox.list danesh@python:~$ sudo mv ~/virtualbox.list /etc/apt/sources.list.d/ 3. Install Virtualbox danesh@python:~$ sudo apt-get update danesh@python:~$ sudo apt-get install dkms danesh@python:~$ sudo apt-get install virtualbox-4.1


Receiving SMS with Kannel

I have successfully installed Kannel sms gateway on Ubuntu and can send message but cannot receive i have done this and its working perfectly well

group = smsc
smsc = at
modemtype = huawei
device = /dev/ttyUSB0
speed = 19200
my-number = +254718195766
sim-buffering =true—————–(Was Not There I Included it and it worked)
validityperiod = 167

Apache Reload Error

* Reloading web server config apache2¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† apache2:Couldnot reliably determine the server’s fully qualified domain name, using for ServerName

I solved it by:

To fix that problem, you need to edit the httpd.conf file. Open the terminal and type,

$ sudo gedit /etc/apache2/httpd.conf

By default httpd.conf file will be blank. Now, simply add the following line to the file.

ServerName localhost

Save the file and exit from gEdit.

Finally restart the server.

$ sudo /etc/init.d/apache2 restart

Installing Free PBX Distro

I am working on a project that involves Outbound call implementation using Asterisk. It has been a challenge cracking it but i have decided to try FreePBX that will allow me to use a GUI to manage all my SIP phones trunks, extensions and other resources here is the installation procedure:

1. Download the ISO file from the FreePBX web-site.

2. Create a bootable CD/DVD with the .ISO File.

3. Get a computer You Need to install in and make sure you backup your data coz u might loose everything new installation will format the disk.

4. Boot the computer from the CD/DVD 

NOTE: You must be connected to the internet to run the installer.

5.¬†¬†The installer will begin with a black background and with white text appearing down screen. Within 30 seconds, the screen will change to a blue background. A gray window will appear that asks you to configure your TCP/IP settings. The default settings should work fine, so press the TAB key until the red “OK” box is highlighted in white, and then press ENTER.

6. The system will present you with a window showing that it is retrieving images while it downloads the install package from the internet. That should take 3-5 minutes.

7.¬†After the system is done downloading the install files from the internet, you’ll see a series of messages asking you about your network configuration. The default selections are fine in most cases, so just press TAB until the red “Yes” box is highlighted in white and then press ENTER. Keep repeating this process until you reach the “Time Zone Selection” screen.

8.¬†Eventually, you will reach the “Time Zone Selection” screen. If your system clock uses GMT (most do not), hit space. Then, hit TAB to move to the time zone selection area. Use the up and down arrows to select the time zone where you will use the system, and then hit TAB until the red “OK” button is highlighted in white. Then, hit ENTER.

9.¬†The installer will ask you to to select your Root password. The Root password is the password you’ll use to login to the Linux command prompt later. Selecting a secure password is very important. Type the password, hit TAB, type it again, hit TAB, and then hit ENTER.

10. The installer will do a dependency check, will format your hard drive, and then start the package installation process. There may be a significant delay before the installation actually starts, so be patient. Eventually, the installation will show you a progress bar indicating the percentage completed and the time elapsed/remaining. That process should take between 20 and 30 minutes.

11. The installer will install the bootloader and some other scripts, and then reboot your computer. More white text will appear on a black background as the completed installation boots. A few additional packages will be installed and updated while in this mode. Your computer will then reboot again.

12.¬†¬†Your computer will boot again, and you’ll reach the Linux console/command prompt login. You can login here using the username “root” without quotes, and the Root password you selected earlier.

13.¬†After you login, type “ifconfig” at the command line and determine the IP address of your machine (to the right of eth0). Then type “exit” to return to the login screen.

14.¬†Go to another computer on the same network and enter that IP address into your web browser. The first time you do so you’ll be asked to select the admin user and the admin password. That username and password will be used in the future to access the FreePBX configuration screen. You will also be asked to set the “FOP Password” which you can use to access the “Flash Operator Panel.”

15. Note: These passwords do not change the Root password! They are only used for access to the FreepBX web interface.

16. The main FreePBX screen will offer you four options:

PBX Adminstrator will allow you to configure your PBX. Use the admin user and admin password you configured in the step above to login. This section is what most people refer to as “FreePBX.”

The User Control Panel (aka ARI) allows users to listen to their voicemail mesages and change certain features such as call forwarding. Users login using their extension number and voicemail password. The Administrator logs in using the username “admin” and the password set-up during the install.

The Flash Operator Panel is a screen that allows an operator to control calls, using the FOP Password you configured above. It is disabled by default in the FreePBX Distro, but can be enabled in the Advanced Settings Module, by changing “Disable FOP” to False, clicking the green check-box to the right that appears after changing it to False, and then clicking the Orange “Apply Configuration Changes” at the top.

Alternatively, you can install the Flash Operator Panel 2 (a commercial product that works much better than the original, free Flash Operator Panel, but which has limited utility unless you pay for a license), by typing

yum install fop2-freepbx

at the command line.

17. The FreePBX Distro offers you the option of installing some additional features. From the command prompt, you can install certain additional features by typing “yum install (name of feature)”.

For a full list of add-ons that can be installed using “yum install” click here:


For example, if you want to install Flash Operator Panel 2, type:

yum install fop2-freepbx

at the command line.

If you want to install the Aastra Scripts, type

yum install aastra-xml-scripts

at the command line.

For more information on the Aastra Scripts or to download instructions on how to use them, click on this link:


or this link:


Adon Domain Redirecting to the Main Domain

Recently a client of mine wanted a second website with the same service therefore the two websites had to share a database. Unfortunately the hosting company could not allow two websites share a database with seperate domain names and have the sama CPANEL i was therefore forced to create an addon domain which has worked quite well but the client now complains of clients finding themselves in the main website despite of accessing the addon website i am solving this rait now i will be back with the solution.   Alex Software Engineer

Almost Out Of Campus

My PicIts been four long ¬†Years in campus full of hurdles and fun but by the grace of God i have come this far i have done Exams Cats Assignments passed and had some ¬†‘Ds’ too. I had a dream of being a “Computers Guy” as people call them. When i was in form one at Ambira High School i joined the stream that was to do computers studies as a compulsory subject by mistake it wasn’t much fun on the theory part where we had to put up with stack pointers compared to the practical classes where we could write pascal programs on windows 95 computers and play pinball. Here i am an accomplished GeeK in my 4rth year almost done with 1st semester with only 5 units remaining and my Project.

I am Working on an Interactive Voice response (IVR) Based system for post discharge monitoring and collection of data but focusing my development in hypertension monitoring which is the leading cause of cardiovascular diseases in the world and is among the causes of 55% of deaths in kenya including diabetes and cancer.