3411 W. Diversey Ave., Basement, Chicago, IL 60647 | 773.342.6205 | Hours + directions

Enough With the Holiday Cheer... Back to Work!

So when we last left our valiant heroes at FreeGeek, they were struggling with unreliable and overloaded electrical circuits, a network cable callously cut during a bathroom renovation, and a dwindling stock of computers upon which to work their dusty magic. What's become of them, you ask? Read on!

Well, the electricity is still running through a disturbing chain of power strips. Don't try to run the coffee-maker and the printer at the same time. However, ever since we signed a genuine lease (back in December), we've been in negotiations with the landlord to have everything cabled up properly. There's no solid timeline on it yet, but after losing half of a day's work today, we're pushing for sooner rather than later.

We still haven't found a permanent solution to get our humble basement digs hooked onto the internets, but we did get a damned good temporary fix today. Two volunteers brought in a custom-built pfSense router install that actually handles the model of PCI wireless card that we have. So for now, we're bridging our network to the internet via an open access point upstairs. And yes, we do have permission! It's slow and it's intermittent, but at least we can download from the Ubuntu repositories. (Huge ups to Brent and Reese!)

Our donation stream is still, as always an issue, but we're following up leads on two sizeable donations of raw hardware. And while it gets harder to pay rent when you haven't got any FreekBoxen to sell, it sure feels good to know that demand outstrips supply.

But wait! There's good news, too. We have two new staff members to introduce, The first is Jacob Roufa who has been hanging around and asking lots of questions for a while. Anytime anyone has a questions about processor sockets, you know who to ask. Our second "new" staffer actually needs no introduction, because he's none other than our very own, long lost Nick Keiser! Nick, we'll never know how you managed to leave the verdant hills of the Pacific Northwest for these frigid plains, but welcome back!

In other news, keep your eyes peeled for the Chicago FreeSkool. Take any class that's offered, offer any class that isn't, all for free. FreeGeek/Chicago will be working with the Chicago FreeSkool to develop a class along the lines of "Desktop Linux for the Everyperson." We can't offer any more details than that right now, since we don't have any, but we're all really excited about this.

Finally, we have a big ol' stack of 3Com Superswitch IIs taking up space in the basement. Also, rent is coming due. So if you're in the market for some sweet networking gear, drop by. We're asking $50, o.b.o. I'm sure you'll put them to better use than we will.

Geek out!