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To wipe a hard drive using zeros:
dd if=/dev/zero | pv -s 250000000000 | dd of=/dev/sdX bs=10M
To wipe a hard drive with random data (more secure):
dd if=/dev/urandom | pv -s 250000000000 | dd of=/dev/sdX bs=10M
For the "pv" progress bar, do "apt-get install pv" or similar. I highly recommend using "pv" so you have some idea of when the dd job is going to finish.
I'm just trying out Linux Mint Debian Edition and the best part about it is how fast it is. The desktop is super responsive, almost feels like a new fresh Windows machine in that respect. User switching is also super fast and works perfectly, something that Ubuntu had never quite mastered. Most importantly, however, is the fact that it is not using Canonical's Unity, but instead it is still using Gnome 2.
On ubuntu systems, you'll need the following packages: genisoimage and dvd+rw-tools.
If you have a folder named "mydvd" in your home directory containing a VIDEO_TS folder, cd to your home folder mydvd, then run:
cd ~ mkisofs -dvd-video -o mydvd.iso mydvd
This will produce a mydvd.iso file. To verify, run
isoinfo -l -i mydvd.iso
At this point, you don't actually have to create a DVD. As a commenter pointed out If you have mplayer, you can play the .iso like this:
mplayer dvd:// -dvd-device mydvd.iso
Use NX. VNC sucks.
I just upgraded my mythtv backend's gcc from 3.4.6 to 4.1.2. It's still compiling all of world now and will be have been about 24 hours when it's all done. Then I did an emerge --sync and now there is a gcc 4.3! Arghh.
Have you ever experienced a full disk on a server or a desktop? Not fun. This script would normally be run as a cron job and would notify you by email if any drive's free disk space has passed below a certain threshold. The code could be better; I wrote this one a long time ago when I was a bit of a n00b and I was in a rush as well. I might make take a look at it again and see if I can make some improvements.
I modified an nginx init.d script and created an init.d script for trac.d. I run tracd and then forward traffic from trac.davidgrant.ca to trac's port (using nginx) rather than using cgi or fast-cgi. Please let me know if you have any problems with this scripts and I will fix it.
I have an old Linksys WRT-54G v3. I have ran various different firmwares over the years, but performance was never a big deal. I was mainly looking for something that allowed to me to access all of the devices features and a nicer frontend than the one that Linksys provides. At one point I was using different firmwares for QOS when we were sharing our connection with some other people in our building. Anyways, I had been using X-Wrt (white russian) for quite some time. It is basically a nice user-friendly version of OpenWrt.
I hosed my entire home directory on this server last night with an incorrect rsync command. I tried syncing my svn repository to the server like this:
rsync -az -e ssh --delete /var/svn/repos/ servername:/home/username/
I've used Kubuntu for a long time. In fact I had never used plain Ubuntu except for once a long time ago on an old laptop but then I promptly removed it because it caused the laptop to overheat badly (it was painful on the thighs) and so I went Gentoo, my bread-and-butter distribution. I never liked Gnome for some reason. I never had good experiences with Gnome in Debian or Gentoo. KDE always seemed to work a lot better out of the box. It might be because KDE is an all-in-one solution whereas Gnome is a bit more modular and made up of metacity, gnome-panel, nautilus and a bunch of applets.
Last time I blogged about Firefox (2.x), I was complaining about how much memory it was sucking up. I have read about how many memory leaks were supposed to have been fixed in Firefox 3 but I had to see it to believe it. So after suffering again from low memory while running VMWare and Firefox (whose memory consumption regurarly climbs to 500MB) at the same time, I decided to upgrade and leave Firefox 2.0 for good.
I just got a new Dell Inspiron 1720. A little background information on why we got this laptop... Previously we had one Desktop computer and a MythTV server/frontend and a TV in a separate room. The TV was a huge CRT TV, but not only that, the TV and couch took up en entire room. We recently got a 24" LCD for the desktop computer and decided that we could use that as our "TV" and computer and get rid of the TV room and use it for something else.
I finally secured my ssh server after I got hacked twice. The first time was because I had a user named vmware with the password "vmware". The second time was because I had a user named test with the password "test". Yeah I know, not smart. Luckily both those users were not in the wheel group so they were fairly isolated. It looks like the just wanted my box to do port scans and cracking of other machines.
Part of my music collection is stored as *.mp3 and part of it as *.ogg files (vorbis encoded). We have a portable Samsung YP-T9 which, when we purchased it at Future Shop about 4 months ago was one of the few devices that played ogg files (which is why I bought it). Even then, I had to update the firmware so that it would play oggs, and although it plays ogg files perfectly well, it does not recognize the ogg tags!
My wife and I just pre-ordered a Squeezebox duet today that should be arriving here at the end of February. It's a device that will allow us to access the mp3/ogg library on our PC from another room in the house (without requiring a laptop).