why I love my Network

I’m firmly in the @injenuity “The Network is People” camp. And I freaking LOVE my network.

I’ve been experiencing an annoying glitch on my MacBook Pro since upgrading to MacOSX 10.5 – nothing serious, but occasionally it’d bug me. What happened was, if I opened a Finder window to /Users – it would show every user’s home directory except mine. I mean, I know it’s there, because all of my files are there. And if I used Terminal or remote SSH login, the directory was certainly there, as were all of my files. If I used Finder’s Go to Folder command (Command + Shift + G) I could enter “/Users/dnorman” and all was well.

But it was annoying.

Every once in awhile, I’d try to debug. I’d use Terminal and navigate to /Users. I’d run ls -l and I’d see this:

$ ls -l
total 0
drwxrwxrwt   7 root     wheel     238 23 Mar 15:17 Shared
drwxr-xr-x  13 demo     demo      442 14 May  2006 demo
drwxr-xr-x@ 47 dnorman  dnorman  1598 31 Mar 18:12 dnorman

The other user directories had either a + or no symbol after the file mode section. My directory had a @. WTF. I’ve tried looking through man. man ls. man chmod. Couldn’t find any mention of @. Try googling for @. Not helpful. This is where the gaping holes in my *NIX geekery are exposed. I was completely stumped.

Finally, I decide to try checking with the LazyWeb. I posted a tweet to roughly describe the problem – as best I could in the 140 character limit – and…

Waited 3 minutes before @thepatrick responded with a hint, and another one.

So, a few seconds later, I was running a new (to me) command via the command shell, finding out about xattr to list extended attributes about files.

$ xattr -l /Users/dnorman
0000   00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 40 00 00 00 00 00 00 00    ........@.......
0010   00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00    ................

Bingo. There’s some funky bit set. So, how to nuke it. I ran man xattr and found it has a -d flag, which is used to delete attributes by name. So I ran this:

$ xattr -d com.apple.FinderInfo /Users/dnorman


My home directory now properly shows up in Finder. Everything’s hunky dory.

The power of my Network, harnessed with a simple LazyWeb plea, solved in 3 minutes what I’d struggled for 5 months to solve on my own.

I love my Network. It’s the people.

Thanks, Patrick. I owe you a $beverage.

5 thoughts on “why I love my Network”

  1. And *sotto voce* the things you use to connect to the people.

    Imagine how long it would have taken if you’d posted to your blog instead? Well, OK, for YOU maybe it would have been just as quick. I’d still be waiting 🙂

  2. heh. true. maybe I’m spoiled – I’ve done similar things as blog posts, and had responses almost as quickly – by people that would not likely be following me on Twitter. Sometimes by the creators of apps that I use, etc…

    But, yeah. I get your point – it’s the people, and also the effective and engaging means of connecting them – in this case, via software running on twitter.com…

  3. just took a quick look at the posts in my lazyweb tag here on my blog and it’s pretty surprising – every single post has responses. Not all are exact answers, sometimes only commiseration, but they all have responses. And some are responses by people I’d never have been able to reach if I just restricted the plea to my direct Network of people… Hmmm… something to thing about here – the power of inclusive and nonexclusive Networks…

  4. plays into the old adage that you achieve far more working in a team than each person would achieve working on their own: 1+1+1=5. The power of the Internet I guess.

Comments are closed.