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Ralsina.Me — Roberto Alsina's website

Going Higher Level, Leaving the Shell (Part I)

What hap­pens if you try not to use a shell in Lin­ux?

And no, I don't mean for in­ter­ac­tive use. Many do that.

No... what hap­pens if you try not to use a shel­l... to boot your sys­tem?

Read more to find out.

Logging in style

I wrote a short in­tro to sys­log, in or­der to stop us­ing it.

Learn about sock­log, svlogd and oth­er al­ter­na­tive log­ging mech­a­nism­s.

Be­cause logs are your best friend­s.

The bad side of Arch Linux

I post­ed yes­ter­day that I liked Arch but I called it "not too good". So, Mark Kretschmann post­ed a com­ment ask­ing what I did­n't like.

It's not too much, but here it goes:

  1. The up­­­grades some­­times are a bit painful (switch­ing to udev was a bit hard).

  2. The pol­i­­cy of delet­ing the pack­­age doc­u­­men­­ta­­tion is evil. Re­al­­ly.

  3. The start­up sys­tem is too sim­­plis­tic. No de­­fault or­der of start­up scripts means some­­times it takes tri­al and er­ror to fig­ure out what goes first. Hal or dbus? hwd?

  4. The pack­­age se­lec­­tion (with­­out un­­sup­­port­ed) is some­what skimpy (no per­l-net-server? no per­l-ht­m­l-tem­­plate?) but that's prob­a­bly my POV be­­cause I am a bit server-ori­en­t­ed.

  5. Some ba­sic pack­­ages make scary as­­sump­­tion­s. For ex­am­­ple, if you have a us­er with UID 89 when you in­­stall mysql server, weird things may hap­pen. Same for UID 40 and named.

On the oth­er hand, the good side (at least for an am­a­teur like me) is a bazil­lion times big­ger.

Distro musings

I have been on Arch for a while now.

So far, not bad. Not too good, ei­ther, but it is a fun dis­tro.

I am think­ing of us­ing it as a base for my ev­er-­va­porous per­son­al small serv­er dis­tro.

You can see any progress I make by search­ing for my pack­ages in AUR (search for sub­mit­ter ralsi­na). AUR is re­al­ly a nice thing to have for a hob­by­ist. You put your stuff there, peo­ple can find it, they can even try it, com­ment on it, vote on it... re­al­ly a very nice com­mu­ni­ty site for a very hob­by­ist dis­tro.

SMTP servers are hell

At least in the sense that they are re­al­ly full of peo­ple with bad in­ten­tion­s...

http://lateral.blogsite.org/static/smtp.png
  • The red stripe are con­nec­­tions blocked be­­cause the sender is list­ed in spam­­cop.

  • The blue stripe is con­nec­­tions blocked be­­cause the sender is in NJABL.

  • The dark­­er green stripe is con­nec­­tions that are rate-lim­it­ed be­­cause they look like a DOS or ad­­dress spam (client con­nec­t­ing too quick­­­ly)

The top green line is SMTP con­nec­tion­s.

The thin white stripe is re­al con­nec­tions that we al­low to send email.

Of course when you look at those...

http://lateral.blogsite.org/static/sa.png
  • 42% are spam (yes, the fil­ter is quite ef­­fi­­cien­t).

So, about 1 in 5 con­nec­tion at­tempts ac­tu­al­ly in­tends to send a re­al, good, valid email.

I am amazed this email thinga­ma­jig still work­s.