I expect that many of our readers have heard about the cell phone hacking in the UK. Political implications and alleged corruption aside, this story has me more than a little frustrated. Granted, the details of this this specific story are awful in their own right, but what really gets me is that people seem to be surprised by the fact that it is possible to break in to someone’s voicemail. It should not be “news” to anyone that voicemail security is terrible.
We should all know by now what makes a good password. It has at least eight characters, upper and lower case letters, symbols, and numbers. Yet several studies claim that many people are still using something like ‘123456’. These are the most common excuses I hear:
- Generating a good password is difficult
- A good password means I have to remember a bunch of random characters
- Good passwords take too long to type
Wrong on all counts. Passwords don’t have to be difficult, completely random, or hard to type.
GNU Screen is an application used to split a single terminal session into several processes, seeing any number of them at the same time. Like Vim, it has a bit of a learning curve, so here’s a crash course on how to control screen, focusing on what I’ve found are the most commonly used features: windows, regions, and copy mode.
Have you ever passed several parameters to a command like this:
ls -lah, and thought “I wish my bash scripts could parse command line parameters like that.” Allow me to introduce you to a bash function named getopts. Reader, meet getopts; getopts, meet reader.
Since I was first hired as a system admin for Atomic Object, I have been saved countless times by having a good backup system. I have also been burned a few times by broken backups. The two most common problems I have run into are the result of improperly handling symbolic links (symlinks) and backups growing stale and out of date. Here’s how I fixed them.
I was working on a server this morning and accidentally deleted an important configuration file. Like many Linux users, I lamented the absence of an “undelete” command. The file wasn’t still open by any processes, wasn’t present in the backups, and would be painful to recreate.