24 December 2010

Christmas eve

My Christmas tree.

Christmas cards

23 December 2010

10 December 2010

A few words on Lenny. Squeeze installed.

Some time ago I wrote a blog entry entitled "The best debian release ever (imo)" or something similar. Well my conclusion at that time was: 'Etch' but now after installing Squeeze if I had to write the article again I would conclude: 'Lenny' What's the matter?

I have reached a very simple conclusion. Once you have the system up and running; all software is stable and all config files and all scripts are ready and at work you just can't do without it. I love installing Debian. I have done it on many occasions. Sometimes it's a breeze and sometimes it is a pain, but nevertheless it takes a lot of time and effort to configure your system to your liking. That is one of the great achievements of Debian but at the same time it's one of its flaws since it is a bit hard and daunting for the new user. That is why newbies usually choose Ubuntu or Mint or whatever... But in the end with a bit of experience they'll come round and that's for sure.

I once read a sentence that made me laugh because I felt identified with it: "Ubuntu: An African word that means: I can't configure my Debian" it's hilarious but it's true. Ubuntu is too faulty. Debian rules. In a couple of years I suppose I'll be writing another entry reading like this: 'My favourite debian release: Squeeze' But all this could be summarized by saying: 'My favourite debian release? Answer: Any!!! As long as it is Debian GNU/Linux!!!! Forever!!!

09 December 2010


eeepc 701 as freenas server

You wouldn't believe it if I had told you. Nor even I could have imagined such awesome invention some time ago. So I had to take these snapshots to prove it.

In a previous post I had warned you that I was getting my fingers on freenas. This usually means that some weird experiment is forging. Then I got this great idea: I've got an eeepc (extra low power consumption) and a Toshiba usb hard drive (low power as well). Combined together with an amazing piece of software such  as freenas is I could easily set up a powerful home nas server to connect to from all my other machines.

The problem with usb hard drives is that in order to transfer data to/from them you need to have them attached to a computer. This is a bit expensive in terms of power consumtion, apart from not being very handy. This way, attached to a cheap eeepc your electricity bill will not suffer at all.

Now there are many affordable NAS systems out there. But with this invention you can transform any usb hard disk drive into a powerful home network server. If you connect it to the internet you can also have your data availble from everywhere.

Freenas server & desktop client

08 December 2010

Text only mirror site

Today I have finished writing a very dirty shell script that automatically creates a text version of this site once a month. That is to say a mirror site updated on a monthly basis. You can take a look at it here

You may wonder why the text version is not a 'real text' version but a cheap copy of the actual site. Well there are several mandatory reasons for that:

1st The hosting server demands an index document in .htm format
2nd I have tried to process html files with html2text but it unfortunately does not render optimal results.

Well if anyone is interested in the code I'll publish it here. The performance is as follows:

- The script first tests working conditions and makes clean.
- Then it downloads the entire site and turns it into text. Both things using for loops.
- After that it uploads it to the server.
- Finally it sends me and e-mail to confirm success.

TODO: -Consider creating a section of useful scripts???
           - Test mirror site with w3m and lynx. (I have tested it with elinks and it works great)

07 December 2010

Bringing back memories

Yesterday I didn't remember when I had exactly started using Debian. Tried hard but couldn't recall. I know for sure that the first version I installed was 3.0 Woody and shortly after Sarge 3.1 appeared. So today I have checked the history of Debian releases and it turns out that Woody appeared in 2002 and Sarge in 2005. This makes sense. As I told you yesterday I started learning linux in 2004 and became a full time user in 2005. So I moved from Woody to Sarge straight away.

The first linux version I ever tried and installed was S.u.S.E 9.2 professional. oh! It brings back so many memories ...

06 December 2010

Five years using GNU/Linux


As I have told my friends a million times I began fiddling with linux in 2004.  A year or so after buying 'Odd' I fell in love with it but it did not become my only true blue love until late 2005. I don't exactly remember when. Anyway it is now five years of giving and taking. That's what love is all about, ain't that so?

What I do not quite recall is when my beloved Debian came into sight. Too bad I don't remember one of the best moments of my life. But I think it didn't take long after discovering that rpm was not my thing.

What may the future bring? I do not know for sure. I think there will be a move to something new, something like GNU/Hurd. Debian GNU/Hurd for us diehard debian users.

Well I would like to explain this a bit further but by now I'm starving to death. I gotta have dinner ;-)

05 December 2010


freenas webgui on my eeepc

Freenas is an awesome piece of software. I have tried it in my network for some time and I love it.

Anyway I need to know it better to write more in depth.

04 December 2010

Shutdown computer as a regular user (howto)

I sometimes need to shutdown one of my desktop machines after a long download. I was looking for a way to do it unattendedly. I found this curious method

In short:

1. Add these alias to .bashrc
alias halt="sudo /sbin/halt"
alias reboot="sudo /sbin/reboot"

2. Edit visudo
username ALL=(ALL) NOPASSWD: /sbin/halt, /sbin/reboot
(I actually had to edit it like this in my Lenny ALL=NOPASSWD: ALL)

3. Now I just need to make sure the download finishes to power off. I use something similar to this:
wget download ; shutdown -h now

Instead of that, if I were sure about the time of the download I could use the command like this:
shutdown -h + 45 (To delay it for 45 minutes) or shutdown -h 15:30 (To delay it until half past three pm)
That's it.

03 December 2010

Let's automatize it!!!

I have devised a way to automatize the synchronization of files over ftp using lftp. I found the inspiration on as I told you in my previous post. I have written a here document like this:
#! /bin/bash
#script to automatize synchronization using lftp

lftp <<EOF
open -u user,password -p [port] [server]
mirror -c -e /remote_directory /local_directory
open -u user,password -p [port] [server]
mirror -c -e -R /local_directory /remote_directory

Now you know the drill:
I gave it execute permission: chmod +x
Then I put it in my $PATH (/usr/local/bin is a nice place to visit ;))
I added it to my crontab (or anacrontab if you prefer)

That's it!!! Now my directories synchronize automatically everyday. Maybe there is an ever better way to do it but that's the way I devised it and it works!!!

UPDATE: As usual there seems to be a better way to achieve this. I have found it here You can use 'at' with lftp:

lftp at 00:00 ... & (Thus the process runs in the background at 12)