LinuxSysAdmin

Things I don't want to look for twice..

Monthly Archives: March 2010

VirtualBox vs. VMWare workstation 3D acceleration

Well, it was an opensource project acquired by Sun, that was acquired by Oracle. But I’m not into the selling and buying business, so I’ll just get to the subject. VirtualBox has something that VMWare Workstation (let’s say 7) doesn’t. And it’s called 3D acceleration. Well, I know that VMWare Workstation has 3D acceleration since the 6.x versions, BUT, some of the people tried installing Ubuntu as a guest on a Windows with VMWare Workstation host. After installing the guest, they tried enabling desktop composition – Compiz Fusion. And they had a surprise, telling them that desktop effects could not be enabled. Why? Because VMWare Workstation only supports 3D acceleration for a Windows-based guest. Which means that Linux-based guests are not supported. So this is where VirtualBox comes into place. Well, VirtualBox supports 3D acceleration for whatever guest operating system you’ll have. In fact, VirtualBox allows you to set up virtual video memory available for the guest operating system, which VMWare Workstation doesn’t.

So, the best solution for Linux-based guests if you need 3D acceleration, VirtualBox is the solution. It’s a little buggy though, …for example, when you change desktop theme in Ubuntu, the screen flickers, but it’s not flickering after it’s done changing the theme, and what the hell, you can enable compiz. 🙂

My new desktop

Including conky’s new colours and a new desktop I found.

Blogger Template Designer

This is a new capability of the Blogger in Draft interface (yeah, I know, kind of a BETA version of blogger) that lets you customize your blog template. You get to choose to start from a couple of templates, and then customize them to satisfy your needs and fantasy. You can choose the number of columns, fonts used, colors, sizes, and even widths. You can also choose some backgrounds, just like I did. This Matrix like background surely excited my fantasy. 🙂 Give it a try, and then you’ll see your web designer skills taken into action.

Conky

Well, I just discovered Conky. Conky is a very lightweight computer monitor, for a linux desktop (not a gnome applet or anything). It’s very configurable, and it just made my desktop look like the picture below.

[update]: apparently, you cannot add this directly to startup applications in ubuntu, simply because it will not work, but if you make it sleep for 30 seconds and then run conky, it works like a charm. So, to add this in startup applications, the command looks like this:

sleep 30 && /usr/bin/conky

Windows Live Writer blog client

So, I’ve been using Drivel on my Eee PC for editing a WordPress blog, but when I tried to use it with Blogspot, it didn’t work, or, it worked, but not correctly. So, now, for editing blogs on a Linux, the best choice I guess still remains Scribefire, which is actually a Firefox plugin, and which works with most blogging platforms. Unfortunately, I hate the load of buttons and shit all over my small Eee PC screen. It’s not that usable. I just hope that Drivel developers will make that shit work with Blogspot.

On some old posts ago, I discovered Windows Live Writer, which is good with the Live Spaces, WordPress, Blogspot, Livejournal, and probably with every well known blogging platform there is. I really like its simpleness and clean interface, and it’s my choice of blogging in Windows. Although I have a huge 1920×1080 resolution on my desktop, I’m not going to fill it up with Scribefire.

And earlier, it was just a test that my setup is correct in Windows Live Writer for my Blogspot account.

Testing

just testing..

Internet Explorer 9

Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview has been presented yesterday in Las Vegas at a Microsoft MIX 10 conference. It’s also available for download over here. I personally don’t like testing shit on my own computer, but for the anxious ones to test it, now is the chance to do it.

FreeBSD (IV)

How to create filesystem snapshots:

# mount -u -o snapshot /root/snapshot /var

or

# makesnap_ffs /var /root/snapshot

This will create a snapshot of /var diretory into /root/snapshot file. Snapshot can be mounted like this:

# mdconfig -a -t vnode -f /root/snapshot -u 4
# mount -r /dev/md4 /mnt

# umount /mnt
# mdconfig -d -u 4

Filesystem quotas. To enable them, first, you’ll have to have this in your kernel config:

options QUOTA

And this added to your rc.conf file:

enable_quotas=”YES”

To disable bootup quotacheck with will largely increase boot time, you can disable it by adding this to rc.conf:

check_quotas=”NO”

To enable user and group quotas on a filesystem, you should add this to your /etc/fstab:

/dev/da0s1a    /    ufs    rw,userquota,groupquota        1    1

To check if quota is enables, run this:

# quota -v

To edit a users’ quota, you’ll need to run this:

# edquota -u testuser

To assign the same quota settings to multiple users, you can use this:

# edquota -p testuser testuser1 testuser2 testuser3 …

or

# edquota -p testuser 1000-1500

This will assing the same quota settings of testuser to users that UIDs are between 1000 and 1500.

Filesystem encryption, and even swap encryption for the real paranoid system admins, can be achieved using gbde (GEOM based disk encrytion) or geli. gdbe will need this added to kernel config and recompilation:

options GEOM_BDE

geli is a newer way to encrypt filesystems and it’s available from FreeBSD 6.0. Good part is that is faster than gbde, and supports multiple encryption algorithms, and you’ll need this added to your kernel config:

options GEOM_ELI
device crypto

Ubisoft DRM

Recently, Ubisoft released a DRM mechanism to make sure you’re not playing cracked version of their games. Unfortunately, you got to be online (internet connection required) in order to be authenticated on their servers, and be able to play their games. Unfortunately, their DRM was cracked next day from release date, and unfortunately, yesterday their authentication servers went down, so no one could authenticate…and play their games.

IE6 funerals :)

Internet Explorer Six, resident of the interwebs for over 8 years, died
the morning of March 1, 2010 in Mountain View, California, as a result
of a workplace injury sustained at the headquarters of Google, Inc.
Internet Explorer Six, known to friends and family as “IE6,” is
survived by son Internet Explorer Seven, and grand-daughter Internet
Explorer Eight.

Very funny, the webpage, including the artwork. All of this can be found on ie6funeral.com.