Category: BSD

BSDNow 7: Go directly to jail(8)


BSDNow episode 7 is out, with jails as a feature among a number of topics.

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BSD Magazine for October out


The October episode of BSD Magazine is out.  I haven’t seen it in their RSS feed yet (is it running?), but noticed it here.

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BSDNow 6 out


I’m a bit slow in posting this, but: BSDNow episode 6 is out.  Theo de Raadt is interviewed, and a lot of other topics (including DragonFly) are visited.  The page listing shows all the areas covered, plus the embedded video itself.

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In Other BSDs for 2013/10/12


I got some PC-BSD items this week, too.

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AsiaBSDCon 2014 announced


Hiroki Sato posted to the users@ list about AsiaBSDCon 2014.  It’s happening the 13th to 16th of March in 2014.  Material from 2013′s convention should be going up soon, and the Call for Papers is already out.

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BSDTalk 232: Thomas Cort


BSDTalk 232 is 15 minutes of conversation with Thomas Cort about “Minix, NetBSD, and Summer of Code”.

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Here, there, everywhere for mdocml


Franco Fichtner recently received commit rights for DragonFly.  This is so he could import mdocml, a OpenBSD-originating replacement for groff and man page display.  Mdocml has been mentioned before on the Digest, and there’s a downloadable book.  (See the more-interesting-than-it-sounds History of UNIX Manpages there too, but I digress.)

One advantage of using mdocml, as I understand it, is that groff is no longer required to view man pages.  The only thing left in DragonFly that required a C++ compiler was groff.  So, rebuilding could be a bit faster, and a bit less complicated.

Here’s the part that makes me happy: Changes made in DragonFly promptly made it back into NetBSD’s mdocml.   Other changes rolled from DragonFly back into OpenBSD, too, and mdocml is in FreeBSD 10, though I don’t have a src change to point at right now.  It all circled back around to DragonFly, too.  It’s really neat to have a BSD-grown cross-BSD product.

(Incidentally, if you have a Thinkpad and keyboard issues, Franco has a patch for you to try.)

 

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In Other BSDs for 2013/10/05


Less straight source links this week.

Related to DragonFly: Patrick Welche updated glib2 in pkgsrc, and is interested in hearing how it works for DragonFly users.  If you have pkgsrc on your system and it’s not a quarterly release, try building t.

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vBSDCon: register soon!


There’s 30 days left to register for vBSDCon… except that 30 day mark was a week ago, but I didn’t get it posted.  So now there’s 19 days.  If you were thinking of going, go for it.  This is I think the only east coast BSD convention in the US other than NYCBSDCon.

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BSDNow: Stacks of Cache


The BSDNow video series put out another episode already: Stacks of Cache.  I didn’t realize this before, but they broadcast their episodes live as they are done on Wednesdays at 18:00 UTC.

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NYCBUG meetup Wednesday


If you’re around New York City on Wednesday, Boris Kochergin will be giving a talk at the NYCBUG meeting about how he and his employer, New York Internet, managed to be in the middle of Hurricane Sandy and survive without interruption.

That same announcement lets drop the news that NYCBSDCon will happen next February 1st 8th.

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In Other BSDs for 2013/09/28


This week was relatively quiet, but also had the most cross-BSD work I’ve seen in a while.  Look at the links and you’ll see.

Here’s more on Unbound, since it seems to be a trend.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/09/22


This week, the sewer drain for my house clogged.  Fixing that is not fun.  What is fun is reading random semi-technical articles around the Internet.  So get clicking!

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In Other BSDs for 2013/09/21


Finally, a quieter week.

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New BSD video: BSDNow


Something I only just recently found out about: BSDNow.  They’re planning weekly videos with BSD news and interviews.  I say ‘planning’, but as of this writing, both Episode 1 and Episode 2 (which is much better quality) are already available.  Another episode is planned this week.  Episode 3 is out already.

 

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OpenZFS announced


ZFS was originally created at Sun and open sourced.  Sun was absorbed by Oracle and stopped being open (or even really existing), so ZFS was taken up by several separate groups – FreeBSD and Illumos being two examples.  OpenZFS has been announced, in part to provide common reference for other platforms that might implement it and probably to avoid capability fragmentation.  It’s certainly a good idea.

(If I have my history wrong, please correct me.)

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Do you know sudo?


Michael W. Lucas needs tehcnical reviewers for his first draft of ‘Sudo Mastery’.  If you know sudo, and know how to criticize (and who doesn’t, for this is the Internet), look at what you’d have to do.

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vBSDCon speaker/presentation list


I don’t think I saw it before, but there’s a list of speakers and events up for vBSDCon.  There’s no DragonFly-specific talks, but there is a presentation from Baptiste Daroussin, one of the people behind pkgNG, which is used to create parts of DragonFly’s dports framework.

It’s positive to see a BSD conference sponsored by a company that’s not selling a BSD-specific product.  It’s happening in about a month and a half, October 25-27, in Dulles, VA.

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BSD Magazine: administration


The September issue of BSD Magazine is out as a free download.  The theme is BSD system administration, though there’s always other articles in addition to the issue topic.

(via freebsdnews.net, since I haven’t seen the announcement in the bsdmag.org RSS feed or by email)

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In Other BSDs for 2013/09/07


There’s been a lot of commit activity across the BSDs, but my list doesn’t seem to reflect that.  A lot of incremental work, I suppose.

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BSDTalk 213: FreeBSD Documentation Project


In BSDTalk 213, Will Backman talks to a number of people about the FreeBSD Documentation Project.  It’s about 14 minutes and it comes from the recent BSDCan 2013 event.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/09/01


Another week of links completed early.  And there’s a lot, so get clicking!

Your unrelated link of the week: The remix of this 1997 Kid’s Guide to the Internet - somewhat NSFW, and has all the best moments.  More from EVERYTHING IS TERRIBLE.

In Other BSDs: 2013/08/31


I need to update this post during the week as I see stuff, or else I spend an hour rushing to get it all together before Satuday.  I need to start watching PC-BSD src changes, too.

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In Other BSDs: 2013/08/24


I hope I’m catching the interesting stuff; I’m only reading the src changes.

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Details on sysrc


Michael W. Lucas has a short article up about sysrc, a FreeBSD tool for handling rc.conf across multiple machines.  This could easily be a cross-BSD tool – hint, hint.

Update: as Sascha Wildner pointed out, rcrun covers that in DragonFly.  Mostly I’d like to see the same interface, then, I guess?

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In Other BSDs: 2013/08/17


Not just source links, this week:

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A book review somewhere else: Network Security Monitoring


Michael W. Lucas has a review up of Richard Bejtlich’s “The Practice of Network Security Monitoring“.  Both of them are long-term BSD users, and Bejtlich, if I remember correctly, was part of the design of Capsicum, the security framework that is serving as a Summer of Code project for DragonFly right now.  So it’s worth looking at his book.  And/or looking at his blog, for those who want more.

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BSDTalk 230: Burt Kaliski of Verisign


BSDTalk episode 230 is out.  It’s 12 minutes of conversation with Burt Kaliski, CTO of Verisign, about the upcoming newest BSD convention, vBSDCon.

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vBSDCon registration open


Registration is open for vBSDCon, happening in Dulles, Virginia, USA, on October 25th through 27th. There’s some neat-sounding presentations listed.

I think that is the same location where I went to a rather spectacular pre-dotcom-crash presentation from Time Warner/Road Runner back in 1999.  The hotel was great; the presenters were befuddled.  An internal account manager ran up a $3,000 bar tab in one night on a company credit card…  I still have the fancy Guinness glass he bought me.  I don’t think this convention will work exactly the same way, but unlike my 1999 trip, the speakers at this one will actually know what they are talking about.

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DNSSEC talk, recorded


If you missed Michael W. Lucas’s talk about DNSSEC, it’s recorded and available on Youtube.  Or buy his book.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/08/11


Again, lots of links.  Some of these are overflow from previous weeks where I just said “That’s enough; let’s work on the next Lazy Reading.”

Your unrelated link of the week: Mighty Taco radio ads.  Mighty Taco is a Mexican fast food place from Buffalo, New York, USA.  It’s about as authentically Mexican as fast food from a city on the edge of Canada can be, which is ‘not much’.  I’ve always loved the food, though, and the commercials are just the right mix of amateur joke and commercial advertising.

Bonus unrelated: If you enjoy imgur/fukung but it’s not youtubey enough, hit ‘Random’ on IWantMoar.com a few times.  You may want to turn down your volume.

Jordan Hubbard and iXsystems coverage


Wired has an article up about Jordan Hubbard and his move from Apple to iXsystems.  It’s not a bad article, though it doesn’t delve into the why of BSD very much.  In any case, iXsystems has been really bulking up lately to be more than a generic hardware provider.

Speaking of which, that blade system going in now for dragonflybsd.org was sold by iXsystems.

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In Other BSDs for 2013/08/03


How many tags can I fit on this post?  I think I’ll aim for Saturday for these BSD catchup posts.  In theory, I can prep this and the Sunday Lazy Reading posts ahead of time, since they tend to be all-week items, and have the whole weekend covered.

 

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In Other BSDs summary


Here’s what jumped out at me from reading source change mailing lists:

I’m going to have to set a specific day of the week aside for these.

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BSD Magazine: lots


The July issue of BSD Magazine is out, and the listed theme is “Security and Cryptography”, but there’s plenty else.

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BSDTalk 228: Michael W. Lucas


BSDTalk 228 has a nearly half-hour chat with Michael W. Lucas at BSDCan 2013.

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Sales stats and books


While these aren’t his BSD books, Michael W. Lucas has an interesting post up about the sales on his two recent books, SSH Mastery and DNSSEC Mastery.  I’m always interested in seeing how self-publishing models work, whether it’s software or books or music.  He points out that the point of his DNSSEC book is to see if a very difficult subject can be covered in a book like that – which it is.  There’s very few published books that go that in-depth.

(I’m hoping for a whole “Mastery” series covering topics other writers don’t, especially in a BSD-friendly way.)

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BSD, Playstation 4, and disk storage


Supposedly it’s FreeBSD 9.0 under the hood on the new Playstation 4 systems.  What does this mean for FreeBSD, or driver support, or BSD in general, or what you can run on that hardware?  Possibly nothing other than a vague sense of superiority.

On the other hand, this BoingBoing article makes a good point about commodity hardware and its immediate utility.  It’s an effective network storage device and it doesn’t even mention FreeNAS.

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Julio Merino and NetBSD, and volunteerism


Julio Merino is not renewing his membership of the NetBSD board of directors; he wrote an extensive post as to why.  I agree with some of the issues he raised; they are possible on any open source project.  I don’t necessarily think the solutions he proposes are correct.

I am clearly biased on this, but I think NetBSD needs a ‘NetBSD Digest’, to talk about the changes being made and the work being done.  I once asked someone experienced in dealing with volunteers how you motivate people without a paycheck, and he said “Celebrate their accomplishments”.  All the BSDs could use that.  (via EFNet #dragonflybsd)

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A BSD without i386


There’s already been some previous conversation about how much longer to support the i386 platform for DragonFly.  It looks like PC-BSD will be the first ‘flavor’ of BSD to make the jump.  Support for PC-BSD on i386 will be dropped after release 9.2.  That includes ‘TrueOS‘, the version of PC-BSD for servers, which I did not know about until just now.

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BSD Magazine for June 2013: Ruby


The June 2013 issue of BSD Magazine is out, and the focus is Ruby.  The PDF is free if you tell them your email address.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/06/16


This is a text-heavy weekend, given yesterday’s post.  Enjoy!

Your unrelated link of the week: ScummVM in a browser.  Comes with some LucasArts game demos, too. (via many places)

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BSDCan 2013 videos


FreeBSDNews.net has a nice summary up of video from all (?) the presentations at BSDCan 2013.   Of particular interest to DragonFly users: a video about pkg, the tool used for package maintenance in dports.  In this presentation, it’s talking about use on FreeBSD, but the future stuff applies to DragonFly too.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/06/09


Not as wordy this week, but still wordy.  And linky!

  • Max Headroom and the Strange World of Pseudo-CGI. A discussion of how old fake CGI can look better than modern, real CGI. This is an opinion I’ve had for quite a while, and my children pretty much ignore it every time I bring it up.  (via)
  • The Colby Walkmac, which predates the Mac Luggable.  Linked to because it includes good pictures of what the (external) hardware was like.  I find all the old ports interesting, since it’s all USB and the occasional eSATA these days… not that I’m complaining!  I’ve never had a good experience with a 9-pin serial port.  (via)
  • A brief education on escaping characters.
  • I get worried when remotely rebooting a server in a different town or even state.  In Praise of Celestial Mechanics covers much more stressful circumstances: interplanetary reboots.  Does Voyager 1 or 2 have an ‘uptime’ function?
  • The equivalent of what you are doing right now, 20 years ago.  I personally never got to see this; my experience was MUDs.  Speaking of which…
  • The Birth of MMOs: World of Warcraft’s debt to MUD.  MUD == MMO, Roguelike == Diablo/Torchlight, Doom == almost everything else.  There’s a number of game archetypes that haven’t changed in some time.  (via)
  • Playing with powerlines.  I used to work at a company that used these lines for data transfer.  It was neat technology, but it sure wasn’t easy to set up.  Imagine wiring a city but only being able to use Ethernet hubs.  Not switches, hubs.  That, combined with undersized ARP caches/MAC tables, made it really difficult.
  • OpenVPN on FreeBSD, which will come in handy for at least several readers, I’m sure, as the directions should apply to any BSD.
  • Is there anything DNS can’t be used for?  Cause now it’s domain-based mail policy publishing.  (via ferz on EFNet #dragonflybsd)
  • Have you tried DragonFly?” posts on various forums seem to pop up with some regularity.
  • Uses of tmux, explained.  A slide show talking about how tmux works.  (via)

Unrelated link of the week: I’ve had several deadlines and a mail server with issues this week at work, so this is all I got.

8-way benchmarks for DragonFly and Linux


Phoronix has another set of benchmarks that include DragonFly and PC-BSD, along with several Linux distributions.  It’s interesting to see, though don’t take them as performance measurements.  7-Zip as a benchmark doesn’t describe much other than the program itself, and the Himeno benchmark results are because of the compiler in use rather than any underlying performance aspect of the operating system – for instance.  The DragonFly benchmarks disappear after page 3.

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Book review: Absolute OpenBSD, 2nd Edition


Michael W. Lucas wrote a new edition to his Absolute OpenBSD book, and that second edition was published relatively recently.  It’s a hefty book, nearly 500 pages in length, and I’ve needed to write a review for some time now.  Not-necessarily-relevant-disclaimer: I contributed the IPv6 haiku/joke at the start of Chapter 12.  

If you’re interested in OpenBSD, it’s an obvious purchase.  It goes into detail for all aspects of OpenBSD, starting with a very detailed conversation about installation, then disk setup, and so on. This is not going to surprise anyone, of course.  Past the initial overview, the book starts with a chapter that talks about nothing else but locating other resources to help learn OpenBSD. It seems a little counter-intuitive to start a book with advice on how to look somewhere else, but it makes sense in light of the topic.

What if you aren’t using OpenBSD, at least not right now?  Something I didn’t realize until I had chewed my way through most of the book was that there’s several smaller books hidden inside.  The book goes very far into individual utilities.  So far, in fact, that it ends up creating mini-guides about the topics within the chapters.  (or entire chapters, in the case of pf.)

There’s in fact 2 chapters for pf, initial and advanced.  TCP/IP gets close to 30 pages just to itself, and topics like snmpd or chroot get an introductory section that assumes nothing about your prior knowledge.  These are technologies you’re using already, no matter which BSD flavor you’re dealing with.

It works as a reference.  I’m going to show the aforementioned chapter 11, on TCP/IP, to my coworker who makes a confused face every time I say “link-layer protocol.”  I don’t know if he’ll make it from one end to the other, but it’s a lot better than waving a hand in the air and mumbling “You should look that up on the Internet sometime.”  There’s enough detail that some of the smaller sections could probably be broken out into individual books, and I daresay that’s what is happening with Lucas’s Mastery series.

It’s comprehensive, it’s readable, and you’ll find something useful in it no matter your experience level.  The book is available in printed and eBook form, from the usual online stores linked at Michael W. Lucas’s site, or directly from the publisher.  It’s also available through the OpenBSD Project, which then gets a cut towards development.

 

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BSDTalk 227: Matt Ahrens and ZFS


There’s a new BSDTalk by way of the recently-completed BSDCan 2013 event, and it’s half an hour of talk with Matt Ahrens about ZFS and matters related.

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Postgres still crazy fast on DragonFly


Loïc BLOT posted about his benchmark of several operating systems using KVM and Postgres 9.1.  Happily, DragonFly is the fastest, with one exception.  Linux/ext4 comes out faster – if you run it with barrier=0, which can be dangerous in a non-battery-backed-up volume.

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BSD Hardware ideas


PC-BSD now has a hardware store, with equipment known to work under PC-BSD.  Chances are good that if it works for PC-BSD, it’ll work for other BSDs or could be ported to do so…  (via)

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Device support     1 Comment

BSD Magazine in May: PF and more


The May issue of BSD Magazine is out with a number of pf articles, plus others.

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vBSDCon website up


vBSDCon, the newest BSD conference, happening in October and in Virginia, has a new website.  (via)

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BSDCan 2013: more BSDTalk, more streaming


There’s another BSDTalk episode up already, because Will Backman’s at BSDCan 2013 and talking to Scott Long, Alistair Crooks, and David Discher, about NetFlix.  Apparently there’s streaming video available now from the convention, and some people’s presentation slides have shown up.

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BSDTalk 225: Kris Moore and PC-BSD


BSDTalk 225 has 12 minutes of conversation with Kris Moore about PC-BSD, recorded at BSDCan 2013, which is going on right now.

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How about Ansible?


Ansible seems to be a configuration management system that’s lighter than puppet or salt.  I had a student talking about it in my class tonight.  BSD users Hubert Feyrer and Michael W. Lucas have both posted about it recently.  Anyone want to repeat their experiences?

Posted by     Categories: BSD, DPorts, pkgsrc, Someday you will need this     3 Comments

Matching configs with ipsets, except when you don’t need to


I am somewhat entertained by Michael W. Lucas’s most recent blog post about IP Sets. This is mostly because, as he points out, he could use one pf config file across multiple machines and BSDs for network management, but has to fiddle with ipsets to get different Linux machines to match.

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bxr.su for everyone else


For those of us still on IPv4 networks, the BSD-specific OpenGrok site bxr.su should now be available in general, not just on IPv6.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Someday you will need this     0 Comments

BSD Magazine: FreeNAS FreeNAS FreeNAS


The April 2013 issue of BSD Magazine is all about FreeNAS.  I mean, every article is FreeNAS related.  If you’re curious about the product, this is the place to start.  (The magazine is also now available in ePub format in addition to PDF.)

Does FreeNAS count as another BSD flavor, rather than an appliance?  I’m not sure.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/04/21


I think spring has arrived; everything’s turning green, and a young man’s thoughts turn to computer hardware upgrades.  Time to move to 64-bit!  Anyway, lots of links this week.  These are getting more and more content-filled over time, but I don’t think anyone minds…

  • For the Bitcoin enthusasts: ‘…when my wife refuses to bring him cake on our sofa, he calls it a “denial-of-service attack”’ (via)
  • Make It So, coverage of computer interfaces from movies.  I always thought that was what Enlightenment was trying to achieve: the Interface From The Future.  (via several places)
  • Same computer interface topic, but from anime movies.  It would be nice if this became something people actively worked on, instead of Bitcoin selling and Facebook monetizing.  (via)
  • Flat icons/monochromatic icons seem to be another microtrend.  This is probably because few people do small dimensional icons well.  My favorite was always the BeOS set.
  • On benchmarks.  It says what you should already know, but I like the Phoronix/MD5 benchmarking joke.  (via EFNet #dragonflybsd)
  • This article titled “The Meme Hustler” draws a finer line than I’ve seen before between “open source” and “free software”.    The author, Evgeny Morozov, seems to also have a hate-on for Tim O’Reilly.  See some reviews of a recent Morozov book for a counterpoint, of sorts.
  • Spacewar championship, 1972, in Rolling Stone.  Exactly two years before I was born!   At this point, finding things older than me makes me a bit happy.  There’s a picture of a Dynabook in there, photographed by Annie Liebowitz.  It’s entertaining to read this 40-year-old story and see how well it predicts the future.  I’m also sort of amazed it exists, in Rolling Stone.  More Spacewar links here.
  • Meet the Web’s Operating System: HTTP.  ”Because HTTP is ultimately the one social contract on the web that, amidst a million other debates over standards, rules, policies, and behavior, we have collectively agreed to trust.”  (via)
  • Ancient computers in use today.  I’ve linked to a story about that IBM 402 before,  but the following pages about VAX and Apple ][e systems are new.  Well, new to read, certainly not new hardware.  (via)
  • Yahoo Chat!  A Eulogy.  The spray of forbidden words is an entertaining acknowledgement message.  (via)
  • The $12 Gongkai Phone.  Bunnie Huang breakdowns are always fun, and he’s describing a strange sort of open source that isn’t through license.  (via)
  • The FreeBSD Foundation is looking to hit a million dollars donated this year, which seems quite possible given last year’s performance.  Donate if you can; their activities help the whole BSD community.
  • A Complete History of Breakout.  It’s not actually complete, but that’s OK.  It includes Steve Jobs being a jerk and Steve Wozniak being very clever, which is their traditional roles.  (via)
  • Ack 2.0 is out.  It’s a very useful utility; I’d like to see more standalone utilities created this way.
  • Space Claw, Flickr via BBS.  You’ll need telnet.   (via)

Your unrelated link of the week: Shady Characters, a typography/history blog I’ve linked to before, has a book out.  If you liked those links, you know what to do next.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, FreeBSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish     2 Comments

Reading about booting and BSD


Ivan Uemlianin expressed a desire to read about the boot process, and how BSD works in general.  I made a short list of suggestions.

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OpenBSD packages: an overview


Peter N. M. Hansteen has a long writeup about using and creating ports on OpenBSD, which is apparently a reprint of an article he wrote for BSD Magazine back in 2008.  I don’t remember if I read it, so it’s new to me, in any case.  Port and package creation across the BSDs is juuuust close enough that reading about one version will leave you with a good guess about the others.

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Lounging around documentation


BSDCan 2013, which is happening in a few weeks, is going to have a “Documentation Lounge“, which is essentially a docs sprint, but with a much more relaxed-sounding name.  Anyway, it’s a good thing to contribute to.

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entr(1); Run arbitrary commands when files change.


Eric Radman sent along a plug for a utility he is working on called entr(1).  The desciption is “Run arbitrary commands when files change.”  The site for it has several nifty examples – run make when *.c files change, or convert Markdown files to HTML as soon as they are modified.  The really nice thing about it is that it’s perfectly BSD-friendly, and uses kqueue, but will also work on Linux.  This beats the “This runs on the one flavor of Linux I use, in one particular shell!” approach I’ve seen from some other developers.  See the reddit discussion of it for comparisons to inotify.  No, it’s not in pkgsrc/ports yet.

Update: And thanks to Thomas Klausner, it’s in pkgsrc as sysutils/entr, and in ports as sysutils/entr thanks to Eitan Adler.  You have no reason not to try it now.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, DPorts, Goings-on, pkgsrc     0 Comments

New conference: vBSDCon


This is interesting: Verisign is sponsoring a new BSD convention (PDF link) in October, in Dulles, Virginia, USA.  Apparently the use of BSD systems at the company is increasing, and they want to host something for it.  The pkgNG presentation may be very interesting for DragonFly users.  See the announcement.  A new convention to support increased BSD uptake is really a nice surprise.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/04/14


We are very close to the next release.  As always, it comes down to building third-party software.  Lots of material here to read, until then.

Your unrelated link of the week: A bunch of monster models, all taken at a convention called Monsterpalooza.  A bit grody, but still some very good construction work.  (via)

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BSDTalk 244: Marshall Kirk McKusick and George Neville-Neil


BSDTalk 244 is Marshall Kirk McKusick and George Neville-Neil talking about the FreeBSD Foundation, for a generous half-hour.

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ftp (tnftp) update


Peter Avalos has updated ftp in DragonFly.  It’s actually tnftp, which is the same base ftp client used in FreeBSD/NetBSD/Mac OS X/etc.  It’s the 20121224 version, and the 3.4 release branch has it too.

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bxr.su announced


Constantine Aleksandrovich Murenin has put together a new site, bxr.su.  His announcement to users@ goes into a lot of detail, but here’s a preview: it’s an OpenGrok site that has a forked version of OpenGrok that’s both speedy and takes BSD into account, along with other nice features.

Here’s the catch: it’s currently IPv6 only.  IPv4 will be on as a test just today, and on for good shortly after.  Read that announcement I mentioned for details.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/03/31


I hope you like reading; there’s some very meaty links this week.  Go get a cup of tea and settle in.  You drink tea, don’t you?  You ought to.

  • Reading about KDE’s repository near-meltdown makes me think we need more checks for DragonFly.  We have the advantage of Hammer, of course, which would help in the same way that the linked article names ZFS as a ‘fix’.  (via multiple places)
  • We know that Apple will reject apps it disagrees with.  Google also will do so.  Has there ever been a program rejected from pkgsrc or (FreeBSD/OpenBSD) ports on content grounds?  Not that I know of – anyone remember differently?  I’d argue that’s a favorable point for the BSD packaging systems, though it may just be that no application has tested those boundaries yet.
  • Portscanning all IPv4 addresses on the planet.  Possibly the largest distributed effort ever?  The detail in the maps and returned services is especially interesting.  (via)
  • Scale Fail, a Youtube video of a 2011 talk about screwing up your services.  Mostly about the humor, but the underlying points are valid.   (via #dragonflybsd IRC)
  • There’s still improvement possible to fsck, apparently based on this.  That’s UFS2 fsck.
  • What is your most productive shortcut with Vim?  A very thorough explanation of verbs, marks, and registers.  Holy cow, I wish I had known about ‘: … v’ before.  It’s long, but worth it.  (via)
  • Matthew Garret’s description of Secure Boot vs. Restricted Boot with UEFI, (via a coworker who went to Libreplanet 2013).  I’m still not sure what DragonFly will need to do about this.
  • I missed mentioning this earlier: 20 years of NetBSD.  We’re coming up on 10 soon.
  • Dragonfly drones.  Unrelated except for name.
  • That guy who starts to froth madly every time BSD is mentioned on Phoronix is still there (see comments).
  • Mainframe computer supercut.  (via)

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Tom Spurgeon of the Comics Reporter asked people for their lists of webcomics that could go in a ‘Hall of Fame’.  The resulting list is a lot of really, really good material.  Go use up a few hours reading.

Cons and more cons


EuroBSDCon 2013 is being held in Malta at the end of September, and the Call for Papers has just gone out.  BSDCan 2013, which is the tenth BSDCan (!) and happening in May, just opened up registration.  Same for PGCon.

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DragonFlyBSD on OpenGrok


OpenGrok is a source browser that I have not used extensively, but many people say is a great tool.  The same people say it’s difficult to run.  Zafer Aydogan just posted that DragonFly’s source is available now from his perfectly-functional OpenGrok installation.

(I’ll put it in the links sidebar here, too.)

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Book publishing experiences


Michael W. Lucas posted about his results selling an early edition of his recent DNSSEC book through Leanpub.  He lays out all the numbers in detail, the sort of thing I love to see.  The idea of self-publishing and open source go hand in hand, but the idea of that selling is often talked about in speculative terms rather than concrete.  He’s now opening his own direct sales store, which hopefully means more direct BSD material.

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A short npf note


NetBSD is using/will be using? ‘npf’, a new version of pf similarly-named-but completely-different firewall from pf.  Hubert Feyrer put together a bunch of links talking about it.  I link this because DragonFly is using a version of pf equivalent to what OpenBSD 4.8, and there’s been some discussion of what to do next; it appears FreeBSD and NetBSD are forking off separately from OpenBSD’s version.

Update: npf and pf share 2 letters in the name and nothing else, as Joerg told me – corrected.

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Another sh(1) update


Peter Avalos has committed another batch of updates to sh(1), from FreeBSD.  I was going to comment on how strange it was to see software getting updated so many years later; you’d think everything there was to update for /bin/sh had been done at this point.  Digging casually, the oldest bit on sh that I can find is from 1991 – 22 years old.   The man page mentions a rewrite in 1989 based on System V Release 4 UNIX, and there were versions of sh all the way back to version 1.

Here’s a trivia question – what’s the oldest Unix utility, and what’s the oldest code still in use?  I don’t know the answer.

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BSD Magazine: March


The March issue of BSD Magazine is out, with topics like handling crash dumps.  Apparently April’s issue is going to be all FreeNAS.

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Absolute publishing dates


Michael W. Lucas has announced his next two books are coming out in April: Absolute OpenBSD 2nd Edition, from No Starch Press, and DNSSEC Mastery, self published.

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The simplest web server


Found by way of a NYCBUG newsletter: sws, a webserver written in sh.  Brett Wynkoop is the author, and as he points out, sws works on any platform with “/bin/sh, dirname, cat, and date”.  The author’s giving a talk at an upcoming NYCBUG meeting – tomorrow!

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Patch cross-pollination


I wasn’t aware of this, but apparently DragonFly’s version of patch(1) comes from OpenBSD and NetBSD.  FreeBSD’s old version of patch is being replaced by this and modified to match the old one’s behaviors.  It would be worthwhile to bring these changes back, if possible, just to reduce the differences in a utility that’s already been around the world, so to speak.

As an aside, I always thought patch was one of Larry Wall’s unsung successes, and I’m entertained by any program that has “Hmm…” as one of its official outputs.

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Lazy Reading for 2013/03/03


I am all over the place with links this week – some of them pretty far off the path.  There’s a lot, too, so enjoy!

Your unrelated link of the week: I’ve already been offbeat enough in this Lazy Reading; I don’t have anything else.

Help with a Firefox plugin


Michael W. Lucas is looking for someone to improve the Extended DNSSEC Validator.  Specifically, add BSD support.  It’s an idea worth supporting, because the standard it works with makes self-signed certificated perfectly feasible.

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3 very different commits


Here’s 3 recent and different commits to DragonFly that I’m commenting on all at once:

  1. Peter Avalos upgraded libarchive in DragonFly to 3.1.2, with a note of the changes.  An ordinary and appreciated update.
  2. Sascha Wildner updated the ISO639 file to include the newest update: “Standard Moroccan Tamazight”.  There’s no particular utility to that; I just like saying “Standard Moroccan Tamazight” out loud.
  3. Work on poudriere, the utility for bulk-building DPorts packages, has caused some nice speedups for DragonFly in extremely stressful situations.  See one of Matthew Dillon’s recent commits.

I really wish the other BSD projects would include commit lines in the mail message subjects, so it was easier to catch things like these.

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