Woot! Eight years of my blog

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Apache’s mod_proxy, mod_ssl, and BitTorrent Sync

BitTorrent Sync allows you to keep files synchronized between multiple computers or mobile devices. It’s a handy way to do backups, share files with friends, or automate the movement of data from device to device. It comes with a web frontend, called the Web UI, that allows for connections over HTTP or HTTPS. Using HTTP across the internet to administer Sync seems totally absurd, so I decided to enable HTTPS. I quickly realized two things:
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Guide to securing apache

I stumbled upon a helpful guide to securing an apache server via Reddit’s /r/netsec subreddit. Without further ado, here’s a link to the guide: Apache web server hardening & security guide The guide covers the simplest changes, like reducing ServerTokens output and eliminating indexes, all the way up through configuring mod_security and using the SpiderLabs GitHub repository to add additional rules. If you’d like a more in-depth post about installing mod_security, I’d recommend this one from Tecmint.
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Using OpenSSL’s s_client command with web servers using Server Name Indication (SNI)

One of the handiest tools in the OpenSSL toolbox is s_client. You can quickly view lots of details about the SSL certificates installed on a particular server and diagnose problems. For example, use this command to look at Google’s SSL certificates: openssl s_client -connect encrypted.google.com:443 You’ll see the chain of certificates back to the original certificate authority where Google bought its certificate at the top, a copy of their SSL certificate in plain text in the middle, and a bunch of session-related information at the bottom.
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OpenStack bleeding-edge Python packages are now available

I sometimes enjoy living on the edge occasionally and that sometimes means I keep up with OpenStack changes commit by commit. If you’re in the same boat as I am, you may save some time by using my repository of bleeding-edge Python packages from the OpenStack projects: pypi.mhtx.net Python packages are updated moments after the commit is merged into the repositories under OpenStack’s github account. Although the packages will contain the latest code available, rest assured that the code has passed an initial code review (by humans), unit tests, and varying levels of functional or integrated testing.
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