PHP: Fixing “ is using a unsupported protocol – This should never happen.” (again again)

After updating to PHP 7.4.10, I’m getting the dreaded “ is using a unsupported protocol – This should never happen. upgrade failed.” error message when running pecl upgrade. After a bit of searching, I found a post that suggests the command pear udpate would help. When I gried this, I got, “pear/pear dependency package “pear/Archive_Tar” … Read more

Building Stellarium 0.20.2 on Slackware Current

When I saw that Stellarium 0.20.2 was available, I downloaded the source from and used the .Slackbuild from tried to build it with: VERSION=0.20.2 ./stellarium.SlackBuild‘ During the config process, the build failed with the error: cmake: error while loading shared libraries: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory After … Read more

Slackware 14.2 and Adaptec AIC94xx SCSI

I recently upgraded a Supermicros X7DB8 motherboard server from Slackware64 13.37 to Slackware64 14.2. Initially, I had issues with the built-in Adaptec AIC-9410W SAS not detecting the attached drives. After much thinking and some poking around, I finally discovered that the package kernel-firmware-20191108 is missing the firmware for this card: aic94xx-seq.fw. As an expedient, I … Read more

Burning CD-RW on Slackware from the Command Line

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, I’ve been working from home. This caused me, for reasons that are unimportant, to learn how to burn a CD-RW from the command line in Slackware Linux. The first step was to erase the media in the drive. (While DVD-RW media can be overwritten, I’ve always had to erase CD-RW … Read more

Rsync: error starting client-server protocol (code 5)

While setting up a new server, I encountered the, sometime vague, “error starting client-server protocol (code 5)” when trying to rsync the files from the box to be replaced. On the source server, the in /var/log/messages, I found: Apr 12 08:59:09 REDACTED rsyncd[19871]: auth failed on module etc from REDACTED (REDACTED): invalid challenge response I … Read more

WordPress 5.0 Is Here!

Today, 06 December 2018, WordPress 5.0 has been released. The biggest change is that TinyMCE has been replaced by the Gutenberg (block-oriented) editor. I’ve been playing with Gutenberg since I first heard about it: since August. So far, I really like Gutenberg. It’s just as easy to use as TinyMCE and the bock-oriented nature produces … Read more

PHP: Fixing “ is using a unsupported protocol – This should never happen.” (again)

On servers using PHP 5.6.38, PHP 7.2.11, and PHP 7.3.0RC2, when I run pecl upgrade, I get the error message: is using a unsupported protocol – This should never happen. upgrade failed I looked at my previous blog post and found that, back then (2014), the solution was to run: pear upgrade –force xml_util. … Read more

VLC Media Player Fails with: vlc cannot instantiate dialogs provider

I recently installed Slackware64 current on my home workstation. After installing VLC Media Player from Alien Bob’s restricted Slackbuilds,, I discovered that VLC would not start. After poking around, I found that VLC was giving the error: cannot instantiate dialogs provider. Some searching around, revealed the answer on and in the file That … Read more

Spam of the Day

I especially like FreeLottoe and Winniner From – Thu May 24 09:19:01 2018 X-Account-Key: account2 X-UIDL: _8/”!(Eh”!9>*#!hJT!! X-Mozilla-Status: 0011 X-Mozilla-Status2: 00000000 X-Mozilla-Keys: Return-Path: Received: from REDACTED by REDACTED (8.14.9/8.14.3) with ESMTP id w4I0KWfx002926 for ; Thu, 17 May 2018 20:20:32 -0400 Received: from ([]) by REDACTED (8.14.9/8.14.9) with SMTP id w4I0KUk0004383 for ; Thu, 17 … Read more

VirtualBox Kernel Modules Won’t Compile with Linux 4.14.24

This morning, I tried to run VirtualBox on my workstation–running Slackware64 Current–at work and found that the kernel modules were not installed. Knowing that I had upgraded the kernel (to 4.14.24) this morning, I tried to build the modules: cd /usr/src/vboxhost-5.2.8 make and got a horrible message (and feeling -): /opt/VirtualBox/src/vboxhost/vboxdrv/Makefile.include.header:141: *** Error: unable to … Read more