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Removing leading/trailing spaces in the shell
Whitespace causes lots of interesting issues with the command line - whether
it is present in file names, arguments, or any other data flowing between
commands. Quoting can help, but there's some very particular edge cases I've
encountered in my scripts.
Read the full post: Removing leading/trailing spaces in the shell
Using QEMU inside a terminal with serial output
I often have a need for a quick virtual machine. Many of them don't require any
video output, so having a virtual monitor is a little overkill. Luckily, with a
few QEMU switches and brief configuration of the guest VM, you can view console
output in a standard terminal on the host system.
Read the full post: Using QEMU inside a terminal with serial output
Headless server and disk encryption
As an enthusiast of encryption, it always felt a little strange that my servers
kept all of their data in the clear. But the problem with encrypting a headless
server is that, inevitably, you have to reboot it. So how do you connect to your
server and unlock the drive before it boots? It's quite the catch-22.
Read the full post: Headless server and disk encryption
My personal bash prompt
Over years of using bash, I've customized my prompt configuration to fit my preferences. I value a minimal appearance, and I prefer to convey information with colors when possible. I also like it if information is hidden until relevant.
Read the full post: My personal bash prompt
Better permissions for uploaded files in Django
Django assigns permissions to any user-submitted files it saves. If you don't explicitly set what these are, it uses an operating system default - which, in most cases, is
0600. If you're unfamiliar with unix-style file permissions, that means the following:
Read the full post: Better permissions for uploaded files in Django
My First "Let's Encrypt" Cert
Now that it is in beta, I decided that I should request HTTPS certificates through the new Let's Encrypt certificate authority. It is free, secure, and provides a unique way of requesting certificates.
Read the full post: My First "Let's Encrypt" Cert
Unobtrusive Let's Encrypt requests
My only beef with the Let's Encrypt process is that, by default, the utility wants you to disable your web server in the process of requesting a certificate, so that it can listen on port 80 (or 443) for a verification challenge. I host lots of sites, many of them high-traffic, and that's kind of a deal breaker.
Read the full post: Unobtrusive Let's Encrypt requests
GNUsocial daemons and systemd
After the migration to the new server, my old SysV init script for restarting the queue daemons needed to be updated to systemd.
Read the full post: GNUsocial daemons and systemd
Setting time, date, NTP, and timezone details on Debian
Setting date and time options on Debian has been placed under the systemd umbrella with the "
timedatectl" utility. While I'm not fully convinced that everything belongs in systemd, I do think that having a single location for all time and date related configurations makes sense.
Read the full post: Setting time, date, NTP, and timezone details on Debian
Working with base64 and images
I have been working with base64 encoding a lot recently, specifically regarding image files. Using base64 is a cool way to embed images in your CSS, and happens to be useful when writing Django tests that involve an image file field.
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Favorite Openbox Configs
As an Openbox user, I like to tinker. This should not surprise anyone who's used this window manager - it's highly configurable, and very easy to customize.
Read the full post: Favorite Openbox Configs
ls output in
Something that has always bothered me is that my beautiful, colorful
ls command output is converted to stark, monochrome text whenever I pipe it to less. Syntax highlighting is extremely helpful when it comes to differentiating directories from normal, extension-less files.
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ls output in
A week of Elementary OS
Last week, I tried to upgrade my Debian desktop to the latest Debian stable. Due to my own ineptitude at setting up my desktop in the first place, and my foolishness in telling aptitude to "ignore recommends" when dist-upgrading, I wrecked my system.
Read the full post: A week of Elementary OS
@font-face, Icon Fonts, and Gnome Character Map
Just a quick post to mention an issue I ran into while working with @font-face for a recent design.
Read the full post: @font-face, Icon Fonts, and Gnome Character Map
Ubuntu Live ISO On A SATA Drive
I found myself in quite the predicament over the Christmas break. I was visiting my family in New York, and wanted to upgrade Mom's old Ubuntu system.
Read the full post: Ubuntu Live ISO On A SATA Drive
Using The 'at' Command
If you've never used the
at command, you're in for a treat. The
at command is a utility used to schedule jobs for execution at specific times. The syntax is very simple, and should be easy to pick up for anyone with command-line experience.
Read the full post: Using The 'at' Command
Start X Session at Login
In my quest for a cool Openbox desktop that fits me (you know, other than CrunchBang, which has elevated itself beyond sliced bread some time ago :) ), I ended up tearing up a lot of other perfectly nice distros and building some up from a base install. In each, I ended up tearing out GDM. It's little bit hefty for accepting two strings, and it doesn't exactly work with Likewise, which I use at work.
Read the full post: Start X Session at Login
Cool Linux Tool: gcolor2
Just a quick post to highlight a great package I found in the Ubuntu Repositories: gcolor2!
Read the full post: Cool Linux Tool: gcolor2
HP Printer Install on Linux using CUPS
Recently I had to print at work, which required installing a printer on Ubuntu, so I thought I'd share how it went. Long story short: It went awesome.
Read the full post: HP Printer Install on Linux using CUPS
Ubuntu at Work
As of today, I'll be booting into Ubuntu at work instead of the usual Windows XP. I am psyched.
Read the full post: Ubuntu at Work
Tint2, Nitrogen, and Openbox Awesomeness
I've recently transitioned myself over to a Openbox-based desktop by installing Xubuntu and pulling out most of the XFCE stuff. It's been quite the learning experience, and I've discovered a couple things that I thought I should share:
Read the full post: Tint2, Nitrogen, and Openbox Awesomeness
Server Administration for Dummies
I finally got Postfix configured correctly (if not completely) on my VPS. It took a lot of poking, but now I can send and receive mail in SquirrelMail. While this is only the beginning of the configuration, it's a nice feeling to have something "click" and start functioning. I owe it all to the fantastic Postfix documentation - quality stuff they've got there.
Read the full post: Server Administration for Dummies
At one of our LUG meetings, NYbill noted that I had more or less been a no-show lately on the forums, IRC and everywhere else. I even missed a LUG meeting! So, I wanted to give everybody a little sneak peek on something that I've been working on...
Read the full post: Where's Windigo?
Wine Gaming: Osmos
I picked up a copy of Osmos, an independent game from Hemisphere Games, a couple weeks ago. As is usually the case with independent games, Osmos takes a bit of a diversion from your classic 3D-Shooter or RPG genre restrictions, and invents it's own game type.
Read the full post: Wine Gaming: Osmos
Recently, tioduke inquired about how my Arch adventure was going, so get ready for a follow-up post!
Read the full post: Archived
I recently had that feeling, the "distro-hopping" inkling that you get when you're too comfortable with familiarity and everything working. After a session in the #linuxoutlaws, I decided that I was going to install Arch Linux on my Dell Mini 9.
Read the full post: Arch Nemesis
Linux Outlaw Gaming
Fancy yourself a gamer? Fancy you'd like to be? Play a game once and a while? Well, we're looking for you!
Read the full post: Linux Outlaw Gaming
Looks like the Linux Outlaws have started up their own Planet: OutlawPla.net.
Read the full post: OutlawPla.net
Troubleshooting: Right Alt Key in Ubuntu 8.10
After recently taking a trip down memory lane with the old DOS-based Id game, Hexen, under Wine. I discovered a very random issue with my installation of Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex): my right alt key didn't really do anything.
Read the full post: Troubleshooting: Right Alt Key in Ubuntu 8.10
Note: Update at the bottom of this post.
Read the full post: A-oK
I've recently been reading the planets: Planet Ubuntu and Planet Web Security, in addition to my daily blogs. Planets are really just lots of blogs tied together into one RSS feed, so in essence I just started reading forty more blogs in two additional subscriptions.
Read the full post: Information Overload
The Times We Live In
From the moment I was introduced to the open source movement and free software (as in speech*), I've tried to embrace it. For a web developer, free and open software seems like a perfect pair for the free and open nature of the internet. I've grown accustom to looking under the hood of any web site I come upon, so why should the browser or operating system I use be any different?
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My PC is five years old, and starting to show it's age. I built it during my senior year of high school, piece by piece, with extra money I saved up from my pizza delivery job. I bought the more static components first (pieces that wouldn't be outdated as soon as I bought them), like the case and the fans. Slowly, I worked up to the main components, and eventually I had a full computer.
Read the full post: Homebrew
Wine and Dine Your Windows Games
I've been messing around quite a bit with my Linux installation (I'm currently running Kubuntu Linux 7.10) because I'd really like to stay away from my Windows partition as much as possible. A big part of Windows' necessity for me has to do with my crippling addiction to games.
Read the full post: Wine and Dine Your Windows Games
Linux - Our Day Has Come
I heard that Kubuntu, my favorite flavor of Ubuntu, had a new version out. Since I run a dual-boot system with Windows XP and Kubuntu, I did my duty and downloaded the latest version, which just happens to be 7.10 (Gutsy). While I was starting the install process, I noticed a small blue signal strength graph in my taskbar.
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Linux - Customize Your Noose
My new year's resolution is to switch to Linux - specifically one of the Ubuntu variants. I'm sick of using Windows and supporting Microsoft in it's efforts to remove the rights of it's users. Linux can (technically) do absolutely anything I need it to do, the trick is getting from here to there.
Read the full post: Linux - Customize Your Noose