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* Posts by wheelybird

34 posts • joined 9 Nov 2010

Mail Migration

wheelybird

A bit vague

It's very difficult to say. It all depends on what you're on, what you're moving to, what you're migrating and how you're migrating. :)

How big are inboxes?

Is the new mail system on the same network? What bandwidth is available? Is it feasible to use disk-shipping if it's a remote system?

What storage backend does each system use?

If they're both maildir then the task is quite simple - copy all the files to the new system and perhaps script a few tweaks to some of the files.

If you use something like IMAPSync then it's going to take quite a bit longer. A large mailbox over the internet might take hours.

Is it just mail too, or are you going to try and migrate contacts and even calendars? Unless both systems use some kind of standard (CalDAV etc) then it's going to be a manual process - export, convert, import. Even with CalDAV etc. it's going to be fiddly.

So without having anything to go on, I'd say it'll take a few weeks, if not more.

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Recommendations for private cloud software...

wheelybird

Seafile.

Seafile. Better than OwnCloud in that the synchronisation works and doesn't delete your documents.

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Ex-Nokia team unveil Jolla smartphone with added Sailfish OS

wheelybird

Re: Don't think it's a good idea

Well you've completely missed not only the point of the phone, but evidently also lessons in spelling and grammar.

Jolla have themselves stated that they not in it to compete with Android/Apple. They know they won't become a dominant player. Their goal is simply to sell enough handsets to be a profitable niche market. This phone attracts people who want more choice than simply Android or iOS. You're obviously happy with those two options, so you know what; why don't you not buy one and pretend that the Jolla phone doesn't exist rather than embark on a poorly-written rant about how you, as the technology expert and prophet that you undoubtedly are, don't think it will succeed? Then perhaps revisit the days when you said that Android had no chance at that the market's dominated by Blackberry and Symbian.

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wheelybird

Re: No NSA please

They're using the fact that they don't collaborate with the NSA as one of the selling points.

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Linux backdoor squirts code into SSH to keep its badness buried

wheelybird

Re: @AC re slipstream SSH datastream

Hmm. Well Ubuntu desktop doesn't come with SSH installed by default. Certainly not LTS anyway.

And as someone else above pointed out, Linux *is* the kernel. You can't bang on about Linux being inherently insecure etc. when talking about an SSH server originally developed for another UNIX variant and which is available for almost every operating system you can name.

On top of that, not every distribution that includes SSH by default will necessarily use OpenSSH (which I assume is the server that was affected).

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Bacteria-chomping phages could kill off HOSPITAL SUPERBUGS

wheelybird

I remember this!

This was on Tomorrow's World quite a few years back. Nice to see the relentless progress of science continues.

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Send dosh (insecurely) via email, Jack Dorsey's Square tells punters

wheelybird

Forging an email is a doddle, and TLS with authentication has nothing to do with making it harder. You can run an MTA on your own box if you honestly can't find some other MTA to send mail through. Even in your mail client you can set your name and email address to be different from your username/password when you do use authentication.

Of course, the recipient might have half decent filters on their mail servers that will check HELO addresses and reverse DNS and all that, but it possibly still won't bounce the message even if it looks suspicious because of all the false positives from badly configured MTAs out there.

The recipient could manually check the headers for a suspicious email, but I doubt there are many people that do that. So a lot of people won't notice that an email's forged unless (like most phishing attempts) the content of the email is obviously not genuine.

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Red Hat and dotCloud team up on time-saving Linux container tech

wheelybird

But what does it *do*?

Linux containers are a great way to run multiple Linux servers; you avoid the emulation layers that VMs require so the end result is that your container runs faster than a VM on the equivalent hardware. You can do a number of interesting things with the way you set up containers using features of the Linux kernel to allow for really easy cloning of containers and other fun things - e.g. containers on LVM2 or BTRFS.

I've come across Docker before and I can't quite see what it's offering that doesn't already exist when you use LXC intelligently. As far as I can work out, it's just allowing you to create the equivalent of virtual appliances that you can get from places like the VM store. That's fine, but that's just packaging tools and templating - they're not developing LXC itself. From the article it sounds like they're almost claiming that Docker's the only thing that makes containers useful, and that's a bit cheeky.

Incidentally, for those interested in playing with containers, I'd recommend trying them out on Ubuntu, as they've put a lot of effort into making it easy to create and manage containers (especially with using Ubuntu guest containers).

A final thought, I'm not sure why the article was banging on about bringing the containers down to upgrade the kernel. I can't think of that many instances where software development depends on a specific kernel version in the first place, but if that is important then KSplice addresses that particular issue - kernel upgrades without a reboot.

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Ex-Palm CEO Rubinstein wishes HP sale never happened

wheelybird

Re: That was a genuine waste

I still use my Pre3. You're right about the hardware - it was outdated even for the time, but I don't have any issues with performance really. The bootup time is ages, but then I rarely need to reboot.

It was designed as a business phone, so the multimedia aspects are iffy. Sound's not great and there's no expandable storage.

The touchstone charging's great though - I've got one at work and one at home and it beats plugging it into cables to charge hands down.

Obviously the selling point is the OS. WebOS gestures and multi-tasking is so effortless and intuitive that when I try using other mobile OSes, they just feel jarring and ugly. WebOS could still be fantastic if they could just update it - new browsers etc. It's a shame that HP killed it dead.

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Review: Philips Hue network enabled multicolour lightbulbs

wheelybird
Meh

Coloured lighting is great

I have a couple of the Philips LivingColors lamps - they connect together so they have the same hue and they're designed to uplight - casting their light on walls. They're great; being able to control the lighting in your environment really is a great way of relaxing in the evening (or perking yourself up). It's highly effective psychologically.

However I wouldn't buy these lightbulbs, certainly not to use in ceiling fittings because downlighting is too direct and not as relaxing. I know you could put them in lamps, but that's still not as effective as proper uplights.

Add to that the inability to control them without a smartphone (or just switch them off and lose their only selling point) and these because expensive gimmicks with no real benefit.

Philips should perhaps create a hub that controls the existing LivingColors range. That seems like a more practical solution to whatever problem this product is trying to solve.

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Library ebooks must SELF-DESTRUCT if scribes want dosh - review

wheelybird

Re: "...digital copies of books should "deteriorate"..."

"They'll be inventing hardback and paperback versions of ebooks next."

They have. :( I went to buy an ebook once. It cost £20 because it was 'the hardback version'. Needless to say I didn't buy it.

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Review finds Wikipedia UK board needs major leadership overhaul

wheelybird

Re: It's not even subtle

Actually, it really is an interesting place. Worth a visit if you're on holiday in the south of Spain (don't forget your passport), but avoid the town centre as much as possible. Stick to the nature park which covers most of the side of the rock.

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Grinchy Google to shut down another batch of services

wheelybird
FAIL

Yes. IMAP is a web protocol. It's a very efficient web protocol. With IMAP idle, supported by several IMAP servers and quite a few clients, you get 'push' email. For example, my phone connects to my Dovecot IMAP server and I get email notifications the moment they hit my inbox. CalDAV etc. are also widely supported on mobile devices. iPhones can do CalDAV. CardDAV is for contacts, it's less widely used but I think the the iPhone does them.

So you *can* do essentially the same thing using open protocols. I can prove this by doing essentially the same thing with open protocols.

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Sinclair BASIC comes to Raspberry Pi

wheelybird

Re: The BASIC this article describes sounds more like

Sounds similar to SAM Coupe BASIC, which was based on Speccy BASIC.

SAM Coupe BASIC was pretty damn good.

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Sony admits PSPs will not fly off shelves, says phones and PS3s will

wheelybird

Just not true

The whole point of the Vita is that it's a portable console with proper controls. You can't compare playing Temple Run or Angry Birds to playing Assassin's Creed or LittleBigPlanet on the Vita. Trying to control a game using virtual controls is awful, and I'm sure you can't get joypad peripherals for your phone, but they're not widely supported or are ever likely to be.

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1 MILLION accounts leaked in megahack on banks, websites

wheelybird
WTF?

Re: SQL Injection

Hey. Why are you blaming the systems operators? The blame here goes to the developers and management for not hiring whitehat pen testers. Systems staff rarely get a say in which software they run on their systems.

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Sysadmins! There's no shame in using a mouse to delete files

wheelybird

Servers

Well of course you should use the correct tool for the job. I use a GUI on my desktop, and you know what; I often use a GUI file manager to copy and browse files!

However, I find that I can't do that so easily on remote, production servers on account of not running a GUI on them and in fact not installing the libraries I'd need to use to run a GUI on them even if I wanted to. Crazy! So when you're talking about being a *LINUX SYSADMIN*, you perhaps shouldn't be surprised that people flame you for telling people to use a GUI.

Your articles, despite the titles, simply aren't aimed at professional sysadmins and the advice you give for novice/trainee Linux sysadmins won't be applicable for a large number of Linux installations.

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Fear not, Linux admins: There are TOOLS to help you

wheelybird

Re: Not all that useful...

Are you joking?

Look up some basic network design and then get back to me when you understand it. You are, like the author of the article, assuming that you have one server and it's directly on the internet. I mentioned things like high availability before, which is one aspect of good network design which is what you do if you're professional. How the hell do you get high availability with a single box whether or not it's got iptables on it?

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wheelybird

Re: Not all that useful...

SELinux isn't new technology; it's at least a decade old. It is is badly designed and poorly documented technology though.

The point I was making, however, is beginner Linux admins ought to turn off SELinux because they'll try and do something simple and it won't work because of SELinux. There are other things they could do which aren't mentioned in this article which will make their systems more secure anyway and won't be such a pain-in-the-arse.

For one, CentOS has a stupid amount of services running as default, most of them ridiculous. If I remember correctly, one is a bluetooth service or something mad like that. The first step to securing a box is to stop unnecessary services. Another is not to run Webmin which, If I remember, has had some pretty nasty vulnerabilities in the past.

There are indeed thousands of Linux boxes directly on the net. In fact my personal server is. But when I say serious, I mean serious as in "Let's hire a sysadmin to look after this" type serious. I would expect at least a screened subnet type network setup for running a serious network system, whether Linux or any other OS. Not only does it aid security, but allows you to move from a server that's a single point of failure to something more highly available.

The conclusion is of course that this article is aimed at hobbyists rather than people employed as a sysadmin, therefore SELinux would be a hindrance.

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wheelybird

Not all that useful...

You do make some good points, but you should point out that this advice is only of practical benefit if you're placing a Linux box directly on the internet without being behind a firewall. I doubt you'll find any serious Linux setup that isn't behind a dedicated firewall.

Tools like ClamAV are designed to scan files going through the Linux system that will end up on other systems - Windows and Macs etc. There are very few viruses and trojans for Linux. If you've updated your system in the past year then you're probably safe against the ones that do exist. However you should really mention tools like Chkrootkit which will actually check for this stuff, or Aide which works as an intrusion detection system.

Incidentally, as a Senior Linux sysadmin with over a decade of commercial experience, I would advise turning SELinux off on your CentOS boxes. It really is more trouble than it's worth. However, Apparmor on Debian/Ubuntu boxes isn't too shabby, so keep that one running.

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CentOS penguins maul Oracle's Linux migration pitch

wheelybird

KSplice

KSplice is a great product; it allows us to meet PCI (payment card) compliance without rebooting our live servers every time a kernel update is uploaded to the repo. Shame Oracle had to go and buy it though.

Of course, you don't need to install Oracle Linux to use KSplice - it runs on CentOS already, along with Debian, Ubuntu etc.

It's very difficult to try and run a commercial Linux infrastructure these days without running something or other from Oracle (e.g. MySQL, Java etc.), but I can guarantee that if I ever fancied commercial Linux support, Oracle are the last people I'd go to.

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Valve to raise Steam for Ubuntu

wheelybird
Angel

Re: Other distros

RHEL and CentOS are primarily server oriented distros. Ubuntu is primarily a desktop distro and indeed the majority of desktop installations use Ubuntu.

So that's why they're releasing for Ubuntu first, though I'm sure that someone that uses an "enterprise" distro as their desktop will have no trouble getting an Ubuntu package to run on CentOS.

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Google Nexus 7 Android tablet

wheelybird

Re: HDMI / Docking connector

There's no HDMI or indeed no USB MHL. If this had either of those then I would have bought it despite the lack of SD socket. I don't get why you'd have such a powerful media device with little storage and no TV-out, especially if you use this Googly Play film rental thing. Surely people would want to play their films on the TV? *sigh*

I ordered an Hyundai A7HD instead - not nearly as fancy specs-wise, but it has HDMI out and a SD slot and a resonable screen for a few quids less.

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Leap second bug cripples Linux servers at airlines, Reddit, LinkedIn

wheelybird

Not just java...

MySQL was also hit by this bug. Specifically MySQL on Debian based servers (and Slackware).

Here's a fix (which would have been handy to know yesterday);

/etc/init.d/ntp stop;

date;

date `date +"%m%d%H%M%C%y.%S"`;

date;

/etc/init.d/ntp start

This solves the problem.

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Global warming much less serious than thought - new science

wheelybird
Meh

People seem to have adopted runaway climate change as a religion - that is they get very worked up about something that they don't understand and have no proof for. Try suggesting to the more vociferous types that, no matter how hard we try, human impact on the Earth's climate is never really going to amount to much. The least that will happen is that they will scoff at you for being ignorant.

It's annoyed me so many times that all this climate research never seems to have taken into account the distant past - not just hundreds of thousands of years ago, but millions of years ago when the planet did indeed have a fair amount of CO2. The climate has shifted dramatically, but it seems to bear life still the last time I looked.

I look forward to the believers in runaway human climate change respond to this study with derision. As they surely will.

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Why GNOME refugees love Xfce

wheelybird
Linux

Choice, not fragmentation

I don't like Unity. I gave Gnome 3 a go, but even with mods to make it more like Gnome 2 I couldn't bring myself to enjoy it; mostly because of the lack of wobbly windows ;)

As much as I didn't like these two new offerings, I didn't start having a tantrum about how unusable Linux is these days because, and here is a point which people keep overlooking and which I think this article is helping to address, if you don't like it, don't use it.

There are other desktop environments for Linux, and switching between them doesn't mean (as this article suggests) that you need to reinstall your current distro.

A visit to Synaptic or Software centre or a one line command with yum will download a new desktop environment for you and you can log out of the current one and then log into your new environment.

I think that this is what Shuttleworth meant when he talked about 'different ways to skin Ubuntu', though I think he's not being proactive enough in telling people how to avoid Unity if they dislike it so much.

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Grand Theft Auto V trailer drives onto interweb

wheelybird
WTF?

"After the reveal"

Do you mean, after the revelation. Do you really need to work so hard to unneccesarily hack bits out of a language when there's no reasonable need to? Do you feel like you've saved yourself some time not typing those couple of extra characters? Perhaps time enough to take a relaxing bath or write a novel? In text speak.

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HP Pre 3 punters peeved as expected price cut is a no show

wheelybird

Bah

It was stated on the HP website that they expected a significant price reduction. I phoned to pre-order one at the beginning of last week (because the site was down) and the chap at the end said they would be reduced and bundled with accessories. I've not been able to get back in contact with them by any means since, and I've not had any communication from them at all despite their website claiming that they've been contacting people.

I seem to be one of the the few people who wanted one of those phones even before the price cut, but sadly I've been beaten to it by hundreds of people who intend to resell them on the ebays for twice the price. *sigh*

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Android bakes bitter 20th birthday cake for Linux

wheelybird
FAIL

Second best priest?

Linux the second most popular server OS? Not according to any of the stats I've seen in the past years.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_share_of_operating_systems#Servers

What a lazy, pointless article.

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Google Chromebooks molt, grow fresh browser

wheelybird

Fanless

Chromebooks are most likely to be ARM devices - fanless, cool and light. I have an Toshiba AC100 (which would make a good ChromeOS device). It's very slim, light and has an eight hour battery life. The inside of the case is actually mostly air. In hours of use, it's got ever so slightly warm.

So yeah, netbooks are old hat. Smartbooks are the future.

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BBC shifts some HD transmissions to 1080p...

wheelybird

This has been going on for a few weeks now.

The BBC started doing dynamic 1080i/p a couple of months back now (and yes, it's 1080p25, and yes, it's in the Freeview specs). It's only the BBC HD channel that they're doing it on, though.

It's not just Sony TVs that had/have problems. A lot of Samsung TVs had OK sound, but the picture blanked for each i/p switchover. Perhaps they've been fixed now.

The BBC and Sony have known about this problem for a while now, but it took them ages to respond to user complaints. In fact, Sony only admitted to the problem three or four days ago.

The BBC explained what they assume the problem is a couple weeks ago, but decided to keep running their dynamic switching experiments rather than wait for the manufacturers to get a fix in. Considering that a large percentage of Freeview HD viewers own the Sony / Samsung TVs, that's an odd decision.

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Windows 7 service pack 1 set to lift off today

wheelybird
WTF?

Distro upgrades

They also update all of your installed applications, remember? The actual OS components being updated will be a small percentage of the total.

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Sage Pay prevents punters blowing Xmas wad

wheelybird
Thumb Down

A failure a day

We use sagpay on our website. I used to screen-scrape Sage's status page for our alerting system until they got wise to that and made it restricted access (they don't like people knowing that their systems are knackered).

After that I started scraping their RSS feed, but that didn't work very well because they used to only update that once they'd (temporarily) fixed their problems, with a 'all OK' message.

However, since their last 'upgrade', they've started being more honest on their RSS feed, and actually reporting when there are problems. The down-side to this is that there have been very few days in the last month when that alert hasn't been fired because of their poor systems.

So I've had to turn of alerting for their system.

I suspect the Windows XP laptop they run their system on is become a bit old an knackered now.

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E Ink unwraps colour e-paper reader

wheelybird
Heart

One obvious application

That seems to have been missed out. Digital photo frames. It's the future.

Oh, and porn.

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