Shell's TechBlabber

…ShelLuser blogs about stuff ;)

Using Git for Unix systems administration

Git, the version control system (“VCS”) developed by Linus Torvalds, is most commonly used for development purposes. You can keep track of your sources at any given time, branch out to test new ideas while your main source tree always remains untouched if need be. And of course you can revert changes (also temporarily) at any given time. And that’s not even mentioning the options to store all your work on a remote (central) repository in order to share it with others.

But Git can do so much more. In this post I’ll show you how you can use it to take Unix systems administration to complete new heights. If you ever wondered about some of the advantages which Git has over traditional systems such as Subversion then read on: I’ll be sharing some major examples.

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May 12, 2018 Posted by | Editorial, Tips and tricks | , , | Leave a comment

Git: A developer tool not just for developers, you might like it too!

Git

When Linus Torvalds launched Git I’ve read many things about it, but being a rather die-hard FreeBSD sysadmin I didn’t really see much use for it myself at first. After all: FreeBSD uses Subversion which I really enjoyed using myself as well. And if it isn’t broke, why change it?  Well…

Git was one of those things which sat patiently on my todo list until I had the time to check it out. And then it happened: I was trying to help out a Minecraft related project which hosted their code on Github. And that uses Git. And so I figured it was about time to scratch Git from my todo list and start a crash course to first and foremost get my suggestions sent to the project and we’d see what might be next.

That was a few weeks ago.

In the mean time I’ve converted all my Subversion repositories to Git, discovered ways to use Git which are totally impossible on Subversion and I even managed to scratch yet another idea off my todo list because of it. Simply put: I think Git is amazing. And not just for developers, sysadmins like myself can definitely benefit from this as well.

So I figured I’d share my findings.

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April 30, 2018 Posted by | Editorial, Tips and tricks | , , , | Leave a comment

DNSSEC: Massively overhyped?

Last year I got a little fed up with the Bind (“Named”) DNS server for reasons which I’ll explain further below, and I started digging into PowerDNS. A pretty solid project for sure and it definitely has some advantages over Bind. However, due to recent changes in the project I came to conclude that managing PowerDNS had become even more tedious than Bind originally was! That’s no good, so I decided to move back and because I was giving my setup a massive overhaul anyway I also started looking into DNSSEC. A topic which was still sitting on my TODO list. Yeah… Very important according to ICANN and ISC. But is it really? I have some serious concerns…

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March 26, 2018 Posted by | Editorial, Security, TechBlabber | , , , , | 1 Comment

Is AI the new ‘religion’?

In the past years the topic of artificial intelligence has been raised a numerous of times and not always in a positive way. Take for example Professor Hawkings who warns that AI could easily pose a threat to mankind due to their major differences in evolution. Or what to think about all the shown issues with self driving cars?

Tesla’s CEO has already warned governments to intervene in order to stop the threat which AI imposes according to him.

But how feasible are those fears?

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July 31, 2017 Posted by | Editorial, TechBlabber | , , , | Comments Off on Is AI the new ‘religion’?

Looking at software design with Visual Paradigm

vp_logo

Visual Paradigm is a program which can very well change the way you approach software design. Its key goal is to provide an environment which gives you full access to the most commonly used standards in design modelling while also making sure that despite the complexity with some of those models you’ll always have the right tools at your fingertips.

Now, I need to get one thing out of the way: I am probably biased. I’ve been using Visual Paradigm for over 8 years now and I still seriously like this software.

But then again, I’ve also been using some design models, like UML, for a long time as well and I also continue to appreciate what those have to offer. So… Time to do a review on a software product which has seriously changed the way I approach software developing.

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April 22, 2017 Posted by | Editorial, TechBlabber, Visual Paradigm | , , , , | Comments Off on Looking at software design with Visual Paradigm

Drupal: where people fail to understand the basics of freedom & tolerance.

Drupal is an open source content management system which allows you to build websites. There’s also a community involved around it which is said to be open to everyone; you’re more than welcome to participate and help out to make Drupal even better than it was before.

… unless you happen to be into certain sexual desires and private fantasies which might not be publically understood or accepted, in this case specifically referring to SM and/or BDSM.

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March 30, 2017 Posted by | Editorial, TechBlabber | , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Drupal: where people fail to understand the basics of freedom & tolerance.

5 cases where Open Source Software went wrong

Open Source Software (“OSS”) has drastically changed the way we work within the world of IT, or ICT as is the ‘modern’ phrase. And don’t get my article in the wrong way: OSS is a very important phenomenon and one which opens up possibilities which would otherwise have been fully out of reach. Take this blog: WordPress is basically an open source product, I’m convinced that the website itself is hosted using Apache; an open source webserver, the product is written in PHP which is an open source scripting language and I wrote most of this post offline using Open Live Writer. An, you guessed it, open source Windows application (based on Microsoft’s now abandoned Live Writer).

But unfortunately, as with all good things, there are plenty of people who claim that Open Source is totally flawless and something we desperately need all the time. Yet that is not always the case. So here are 5 cases where OSS went wrong…

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November 30, 2016 Posted by | Editorial, TechBlabber | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 5 cases where Open Source Software went wrong

5 reasons why I favor Daz3D software

When it comes to “computer art”, so basically the audio & video capabilities of a regular personal computer, then things sure have come a long way. Personally I think that things have gone further on the audio field than video, but even so the video capabilities of modern PC’s are amazing, especially in comparison to those around the 80’s and 90’s.

I consider myself a semi-professional when it comes to digital audio and a hobbyist within the field of 3D modeling and rendering. The first time I came into contact with 3D was during the early days of POV-Ray (ray tracer) which sounded amazing to me; the ability to create a virtual 3D world which the computer could fully calculate and set up to make things look as realistic as possible. As mentioned earlier I think that when it comes to realism then digital audio has come much closer than video (just think about the acceptance of CD’s and MP3 players) but even so… There are also some impressive developments on the 3D field.

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August 9, 2016 Posted by | TechBlabber | , , , , , , | Comments Off on 5 reasons why I favor Daz3D software

5 programs with an under appreciated interface

CLI vs. GUI

In the early days of the computer everything was done using a command line, also known as a Command Line Interface (CLI). The concept is simple: you type a command followed by carriage return (“enter”) and the computer ‘does’ something in response.

As development progressed computers became more capable of handling graphics and that eventually resulted in the ability to do most of our work on a computer in a graphical environment, also known as the Graphical User Interface (GUI). And just like the CLI the concept is simple, it usually evolves around pointing and clicking with a mouse. And, if you’re writing an article like this, with plenty of typing as well.

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June 13, 2016 Posted by | TechBlabber | , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 5 programs with an under appreciated interface

PowerShell; fun on the commandline

Many people with some roots into IT will know that it all started on a commandline. This holds true for nearly all major operating systems, and the ones which were quite early with hiding the commandline (OS/2 for example) still had their ‘ties’ into it.

Microsoft originally started with MS-DOS which was actually a rough ‘copy’ or ‘fork’ of CP/M (Computer Program / Monitor). Not a surprising development though; early high-end computers running on CP/M would sometimes also provide access to a ‘DOS mode’ thus allowing the unit to use both CP/M and DOS (I.C.L. used to produce such units).

But here things eventually stalled. When MS DOS 6 came out Microsoft started to focus more on the GUI aspect and left the commandline interface (“cli”) a little for what it was. At first users of 98 / XP had a full DOS 6 at their disposal but even that soon declined to a simple rather limited commandline shell.

Until 2007… Continue reading

July 16, 2012 Posted by | Editorial, Tips and tricks, Windows | , , , , | Comments Off on PowerShell; fun on the commandline