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August 2004

Perl sorting 
- I want to sort that list, but by very special rules. First, I want to sort by country and "state" within the country, and then by the very last field, which is the update date. If the record hasn't been updated, I want that to sort under records which have been updated, and I only want to compare the year, not the month and day. After that, I want listings that have a company name to appear before those that don't. It's a pretty complicated sort, but Perl can handle i
- SCOForum was a once a year gathering for sco resellers and developers. I don't think many are left today!
The Patent Threat to Linux 
- Software patents are always bad. Today's ally can become tomorrow's threat. The Linux community should not be complacent.
Old computers, old ads, old memories - and short programs 
- Blog # 1033 Old computers, old ads, old memories - and shortprograms
Is SCO backing off on Linux litigation?  by BigDumbDinosaur
- Attendees have been exhorting SCO to spend less time on litigation and more time on operating system improvements. Are they listening?
Finally SCO understands the problem - sort of 
- SCO has needed this for some time, though most of us are thinking that it's a little late to be pushing on that barn door. A lot of the horses are long gone, the rest are spooked, and the world is switching to those dang horseless carriages to boot.
$500.00 bounty for Mozilla security bugs 
- Blog # 1038 $500.00 bounty for Mozilla security bugs
Cartoons: Bad day at the firewall 
- Chief Security Officer Firewall reporting: All systems secure.. Wait! What was that?
Cartoons: Best Shot 
- Poking a little fun at Microsoft Clippy - the sad wannabe help tool that wasn't.
Windows to Linux Application Equivalents 
- Windows to Linux Application Equivalents - As we all know, there is very little Linux software. I guess someone forgot to tell these sites.
Cartoons: TCP Client jealousy 
- Cartoons: TCP Client jealousy - telnet and firefox. Telnet may not have been as many places as Firefox, but he does get around.
Contrasting opinions on SCO and Monterey deal 
- I'd really like to see an intelligent, unbiased assessment of all of this. Trouble is, I'm so laden with emotional baggage myself that I'm not sure I'd recognize it if I found it. I'm for freedom and openness, and if SCO or anybody else has patents or copyrights or even constitutional amendments on their side, I don't care - it's morally wrong, it's going to hurt all of us, stifle innovation and so on. Don't get me started, because I'll rant on for hours.
Discouraging binary kernel modules in Linux 
- I confess that I really don't understand why hardware manufacturers have this reluctance to expose their interfaces.
Complacency and bravado 
- At one level, I do think that the patent threats to Linux are more FUD than reality. if you are going to pull your gun, pull it, don't tell me how many bullets are in the clip.
IBM won't use patents against Linux - unless it has to 
- Those Linux fans who are so certain that they need never fear IBM need to think about just what that means.
SCO Marketplace and Skunkware 
- SCO's Skunkware has always ben somewhat of a disappointment. While it does fulfill the promise of binary ports of third party software, the ports have often been horribly out of date and also often suffer from undocumented dependencies that frustrate the non-technical user who just wants to update his Sendmail or Apache.
Define "brutal" 
- According to SCO, a 99% decrease in revenue is nothing to worry about. Plunging from $8 million to $11,000 sounds bad to me!
Network Time Protocol 
- Your computer's internal clock is unlikely to keep perfect time. If you need it to be more accurate, the network time protocol daemon (ntpd) is the tool for that.
Munich Linux going forward, SCO and DaimlerChrysler 
- Please do understand that I do not object to Groklaw's bias - in fact I share much of the same bias, with the major exception being that I know that this COULD go the wrong way.
Where Rob Enderle loses me 
- Is open source a danger to our economy? Is water a danger to fish? Software patents and group-think.
amird driver, BDFLUSH and NAUTOUP, and more 
- New, very fast RAID controller, burt the customer say it is slower! Why? BDFLUSH and NAUTOUP are the culprints.
Cartoons: Bad Dreams 
- Profiled, optimized, stripped - I'm the fastest program in this memory block
Cartoons: Ms. Mac OS X 
- Ms. Mac OS X - Those silly XP machines are always trying to talk to me!
Cartoons: Power to spare 
- cartoon - what do we do with blazing fast cpu's? Often not very much at all.
Candidates Web Sites 
- Linux is a commie computer system for liberals - or so some Republican candidates may think.
The future of Linux and the GPL 
- The history of the world teaches us that succession is dangerous and that the strong take what they want. It's not likely to be any different with Linux.
SME server software raid failure, grub 0x10 error 
- Grub boot would start to load the SME kernel and then fail with a 0x10 message. That's a CRC error.
Profit vs. vandalism in security attacks 
- Profit vs. vandalism in security attacks: what motivates malware? Remember when it was almost always vandalism?
Apple 15" Powerbook Battery recall  by Bruce Garlock
- I found out I was one of the users who is eligible for a replacement. I was wondering why my laptop would get so hot when sitting on the couch, running on battery. I would put a pillow on my lap, because it would be unbearable, but I thought that it was the processor.
FSF: Tech Words of the Day 
- The Free Software Foundation was founded in 1985, long before most of the world owned personal computers. Richard Stallman (RMS) actually laid the seeds for this in 1983 when he announcd the GNU project.
A remote upgrade with rcp 
- When I do upgrades, I like to use new hardware. First, it's often a good time to bring in a new server: in the small business market, upgrades tend to be delayed for as long as possible, so the old OS is probably running on very old hardware too.
spoofing: Tech Words of the Day 
- IP spoofing is the technique of sending packets that are apparently from some other machine. The usual reason for this is that it is part of a Denial of Service attack.
Text clean-up for MAC OS X 
- It does such things as eliminating superfluous spacing, replacing tabs, indenting and more
I don't know Unix 
- Most often "I don't know Unix" comes from a voice at the other end of the phone. I'm annoyed already, because it's pretty hard to find my phone number without learning that I don't want phone calls from non-customers who "have a simple question". Existing clients, sure, call me anytime. But there had better be a darn good reason for anyone else to ignore what they read at that contact info page.
The Catch-22 of XP Service Pack 2 
- I hope that the brewing trouble around this service pack hasn't escaped your attention. It's important to understand that this patch WILL break many programs. On the other hand, it fixes some truly awful security holes.
setpci: Tech Words of the Day 
- Linux users can list their PCI devices with lspci (SCO users can use 'hw -r pci' for a similar listing). 'setpci' is a little known companion that you may never need, but will be happy to know about if you ever do.
Reiser4 Filesystem 
- At one time, Reiser was poised to replace ext2, but most vendors turned to ext3 instead. Some of that may have had to do with the murder conviction of Hans Reiser, though some folks still do argue its technical merits.
tuple: Tech Words of the Day 
- An n-tuple would be a list like that of indeterminate length. That tuple uses commas to separate its members, but the separator isn't what makes it a tuple.
SCO defends its lawsuit 
- Without Linux, Microsoft would have reigned supreme forever. Big Bully Gates would have had the field all to himself.
Spreadsheets - the ubiquitous wrong choice 
- Spreadsheets are a wonderful tool. However, I too often see them used to create projects that should have been done in a real programming language - almost any real language. These home-brewed monsters are often clumsy, inefficient, gigantic and of course fragile. The effort that goes into creating these is often considerable, and the amusing thing is that the creation of these highly complex sheets involves the same sort of programming logic that any programmer uses, but the people who build these will say that they "aren't programmers".
Microsoft just can't help itself 
- Imicrosoft just can't play nice, can they? It's never enough to be part of a standard, no, they have to get their patents into it if they possibly can.
fresnel zone: Tech Words of the Day 
- You'll hear this in the context of radio transmission, for example when you need to network two buildings by a radio link. The farther apart the antennas, the bigger the Fresnel zone gets - it's the area clear of obstructions that you need for a clean signal.
WebDAV: Tech Words of the Day 
- The web page makes it sound like it's just another FrontPage or whatever, but it is much more than that.
Who do you trust? 
- It's true that sometimes you can't trust a mob. When a subject becomes emotionally charged (for example the SCO Lawsuit), it's quite possible for mob-rule sources to be distorted by emotions.
Hating Microsoft 
- There are certainly plenty of reasons to dislike Microsoft. If you are an anti-corporate type as I am, Microsoft is a great example of the abuse that large corporations can heap upon us. If you naively believe that businesses should "play fair", Microsoft makes Donald Trump's "It's not personal" attitude look almost friendly. If you are a home or business user overwhelmed with spam and viruses, Microsoft's insecurities cost you time and money every day. And of course if you are a die-hard Open Source fan, Microsofts recent patent activity may take a back seat to SCO's anti-Linux actions, but it's still a seat very close to the front.
MTTR: Tech Words of the Day 
- What this is actually referring to is whether or not your CPU has Memory Type Range Registers
sack: Tech Words of the Day 
- Selective Acknowledgements RFC-2018 are turned off or on in Linux by setting net.ipv4.tcp_sack (in /etc/sysctl.conf ) to 0 or 1. The purpose of this feature is to cut down on retransmisson of packets on bad networks.
FUD about Linux costing more 
- Every dollar a company spends on a Microsoft product results in an additional $8 of IT expenses. I've seen that over and over again.
- Mach is a microkernel system, which means that most of the features that are ordinarily within the kernel are instead separate servers - think of them as daemons, though they aren't necessarily running in user space.
- WTAIL is 'tail' for windows. Except it isn't really. Unix tail is much more flexible, and GNU tail is even more so.
- A tool for cracking Wireless networks: http://airsnort.shmoo.com/. Yes, it's possible to crack the encryption of WEP wireless networks. However, it requires examining a LOT of packets - this could be months worth of monitoring.
- The meaning of Hurd is self-referentially recursive. It intends to be the GNU OS. It seems that it is always 'close to ready', and perhaps that is where it always will be.
- Embeddable Linux. The intent here is to port Linux to 8086 and 80286 processors. Why not? Xenix ran on those, and while the lack of a protected mode CPU on the 8086, and the limited powers of the 80286 make it all make it all challenging, I had Xenix installations doing real work on 8086 machines.
- The FBI's ip wiretapping software, since renamed 'DCS1000'. After a court order allowing it, the FBI would install a computer at your ISP's premises to monitor your packets.
- Print filters. Whether it's CUPS, LPRng or plain old LPD, you often need a filter in between application data and the physical printer. In olden times, you'd use specific filters for specific purposes, but the trend now is to Swiss army knife, do everything programs.
- Computers screw up. You can have meaningless instructions, attempts to divide by zero, attempts to access non-existent memory, and more.
How and where to start writing first UNIX Shell Script  by Rakesh Awasthi
- If you are new to UNIX and having not much idea of UNIX, worried how to start writing shell scripts in UNIX, wondering why we need UNIX shell programming, etc. then this article will answer all your queries.
How and where to start writing first Shell Script in UNIX Part 2  by Rakesh Awasthi
- How and where to start writing first ShellScript in UNIX
Process scheduling 
- Process scheduling is obviously important on multi-user systems. It's also important on systems we use as individuals. For example, contrast the startup of my Mac OS X box and my wife's XP system. Both have certain programs set to start up at login, but they obviously handle the scheduling much differently. On the Mac, I can click into any process that has started and can use it while other programs are still starting. On XP, I can't: the other programs will command the CPU's attention until everything is running.