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Ralsina.Me — Roberto Alsina's website

More on free software on Argentina's government

On this morn­ing's news­pa­per. So I am ahead of the curve by about 48 hours. That's not much :-)

In­ter­est­ing: it seems Win­dows was manda­to­ry in of­fi­cial us­age. Weird, since I have seen hun­dreds of Lin­ux servers on of­fi­cial us­age :-)

Ugly hack at noon

I just spent the af­ter­noon at a clien­t's hack­ing qmail+­couri­er to work stor­ing mail on a NT serv­er.

Why? Well, mi­gra­tion is­sues, from NT to Lin­ux.

And what had to be hacked? Lot­s.

  • You can't chmod over SMB

  • You can't link() over SMB (y­ou can un­link(), though), so in or­der to have atom­­ic mes­sage moves from Maildir/tmp to Maildir/new and what­ev­er, re­­name()

  • Good thing this was a sin­­gle-UID qmail sys­tem: you can't chown ei­ther ;-)

  • Couri­er's meta­­da­­ta is cre­at­ed on Maildir/tmp and moved: same prob­lem as above

  • Cranky per­mis­­sion checks fixed via uid,gid,f­­mask mount op­­tion­s.

  • It had to work with a canned we­b­­mail thing, which ex­pects all mail to be in one fold­er on disk, so Maildir/cur and Maildir/new have to be sym­links to a sin­­gle fold­er.

  • Since you can't have sym­links on SM­B, Maildir is lo­­cal, but sub­­dirs of it are sym­links to the SM­B-­­moun­t­ed thing

  • Then couri­er's pop does­n't work be­­cause you can't re­­name from Maildir/tmp (over SM­B) to maildir/­­couri­er­pop­what­ev­er (lo­­cal), so hack couri­er to use mk­stemp or what­ev­er

  • Then couri­er got each mail twice. Looks like it sees two UIDLs for the same file, de­pend­ing on whether it's read or not (my guess: be­­cause we are mix­ing Maildir/cur and Maildir/new on one fold­er). Make couri­er use al­ter­­na­­tive UIDL for­­mat and it work­s.

And so on. About two hours, and I am pret­ty sure noone has ev­er done some­thing like this be­fore. On the oth­er hand, when noone has done some­thing like this be­fore, they usu­al­ly had a very good rea­son!

And of course....

.... there is a search form in the blog al­ready. It even work­s!

PyDs 0.7.1

I up­dat­ed it... the ar­chives work well, and re­move the need for the pre­vi­ous hack­... haven't found how to add a search form to the blog yet, though.

I am as­sum­ing it is be­ing in­dexed, but how do I use it?

Strange weekend

I am pow­er­less. I mean, I have no pow­er. I mean I have no elec­tric­i­ty!

It seems I for­got to pay a bill (although I do have the lat­est one, and it says I owe noth­ing), and the pow­er guys came fri­day and shut it of­f.

No big deal, I can pay it on mon­day, but what hap­pens in the week­end... well, I am not go­ing to let a USD 12 bill get me an­noyed, so I de­cid­ed to move to a ho­tel for the week­end.

Mind you, a cheap hotel, but it's clean, has ca­ble tv and break­fast is in­clud­ed. And some­one else changes the sheets for clean ones.

So, I did. What do you know, the ho­tel is full of in­ter­est­ing peo­ple one meets over break­fast. And I have the right way to get a con­ver­sa­tion rolling:

Me: Where are you from?

Tourist: Colom­bi­a/Mex­i­co/Brazil/Nether­land­s/What­ev­er. How about you?

Me: I live 5 blocks from here, but I think they cut my elec­tric­i­ty by mis­take, and am stay­ing here for the week­end.

You can, I sup­pose, imag­ine where that goes.

Com­ing to­mor­row or next day, a pic­ture of the hotel's wal­l-em­bed­ded TV re­mote. You won't be­lieve it.

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