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MariaDB / mysql root password on Debian Stretch
I was a little perplexed when I installed a MariaDB server on my main desktop running Debian Stretch; it didn't ask me for a root password. This is a change from the previous Debians, which always prompt you to set the password during installation.
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Keeping keys for SSH, and passwords for SFTP
My VPS has lots of different applications residing on it, and many people need to access it in various ways. Sometimes, tightening security for one group can negatively impact another.
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Micro.fragdev.com is shutting down
It is time to shut down the FragDev GNUsocial instance; it will be taken down on June 30th, 2017. I've thought a lot about this, and due to some new developments in my life and the resources an instance requires, this seems like a good time to call it quits.
Read the full post: Micro.fragdev.com is shutting down
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.
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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.
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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.
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With over 50 registered users, the FragDev GNUsocial instance is much larger than I ever expected it to grow. To be honest, I figured it would probably be my own personal instance and not much more.
Read the full post: No Vacancy
Fixing performance issues in GNUsocial
GNUsocial is the most demanding services I run, by far. The strain on the database from all of the different GNUsocial, Friendica, etc. instances retrieving their subscribed users' feeds is more than I anticipated. Luckily, this story has a happy ending!
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GNUsocial on nginx and Debian 8
After running GNUsocial for years, I've chiseled my GNUsocial setup into something fairly fast and respectable (mostly through consistent experimentation and breakages. Sorry, users). Newer configuration changes require Debian 8, or "Jessie", so I thought I'd make a new post explaining things.
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Why micro.fragdev.com is broken
There have been lots of problems with my GNUsocial instance, starting at the very beginning with Identi.ca and firstname.lastname@example.org (which rendered Identi.ca users unable to subscribe to me). I've learned a lot, but now I feel like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Read the full post: Why micro.fragdev.com is broken
How micro.fragdev.com was fixed
In a previous post (https://fragdev.com/blog/why-micro-fragdev-com-is-broken), I explained what happened to break subscriptions on our GNUsocial instance. Long story short: GNUsocial now forces HTTPS, which broke federation.
Read the full post: How micro.fragdev.com was fixed
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.
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Automatically rebooting Windows Server 2008 with task scheduler
One of the most irritating aspects of Windows servers are Windows Updates. Simple software updates require a full reboot of the machine, keeping these servers a pale shadow of their Linux/BSD-based counterparts.
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GNUsocial on nginx with PHP-FPM
UPDATED 2016-04-29: Updated for Debian 8 in GNUsocial on nginx and Debian 8.
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I am the problem
The "fediverse", as we call it, is a collection of self-hosted servers that communicate and federate with each other using open protocols. GNUsocial is one such server, and that's the one I run on my server. Friendica is another piece of software that does a similar job. These servers are designed to work together, unless I mess that up.
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Simple Spam Prevention
I wanted to mention a technique that has been the silver bullet in preventing spam on my email server. When I say silver bullet, I mean we've seen a 98% reduction in the number of spam messages that we receive. I am still a little shocked at how effective it has been.
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Backup Exec stuck at "Loading Media"
Upon logging in to our backup server this morning, I was alarmed to find our last backup job stuck with a status of "Loading Media". Our backups are backup-to-disk, so there wasn't any media to load. I quickly checked the filesystem, and it still had an enormous amount of free space. So what was holding up our backups?
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