Fight cynicism with curiosity

I’m always interested to talk to college students about technology and business in general. They have amazing ideas and they don’t place any limits on themselves. In particular, their curiosity is limitless. A great question I joined several other local employers at the University of Texas at San Antonio last week for mock interviews with computer science students. We went through plenty of sample questions and gave feedback to the students on their content and delivery during the mock interviews.

Helpful, low-FUD information security sites, mailing lists, and blogs

Keeping current with the latest trends and technologies in the realm of information security is critical and there are many options to choose from. However, as with any content on the internet, it takes some effort to find sites with a good signal-to-noise ratio. Information security is a heavily FUD-laden industry and I’ve taken some time to compile a list of helpful sites. General sites Cryptanalys.is: https://cryptanalys.is/ Linux Weekly News (subscription optional but highly recommended): http://lwn.

Install sysstat on Fedora 21

One of the first tools I learned about after working with Red Hat was sysstat. It can write down historical records about your server at regular intervals. This can help you diagnose CPU usage, RAM usage, or network usage problems. In addition, sysstat also provides some handy command line utilities like vmstat, iostat, and pidstat that give you a live view of what your system is doing. On Debian-based systems (including Ubuntu), you install the sysstat package and enable it with a quick edit to /etc/default/sysstat and the cron job takes it from there.

Adventures in live booting Linux distributions

We’re all familiar with live booting Linux distributions. Almost every Linux distribution under the sun has a method for making live CD’s, writing live USB sticks, or booting live images over the network. The primary use case for some distributions is on a live medium (like KNOPPIX). However, I embarked on an adventure to look at live booting Linux for a different use case. Sure, many live environments are used for demonstrations or installations - temporary activities for a desktop or a laptop.

Configure remote syslog for XenServer via the command line

Citrix has some helpful documentation online about configuring remote syslog support for XenServer using the XenCenter GUI. However, if you need to do this via configuration management or scripts, using a GUI isn’t an option. Getting it done via the command line is relatively easy: HOSTUUID=xe host-list --minimal SYSLOGHOST=syslog.example.com xe host-param-set uuid=${HOSTUUID} logging:syslog_destination=${SYSLOGHOST} xe host-syslog-reconfigure host-uuid=${HOSTUUID} Removing the configuration and going back to only local logging is easy as well: