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Life, the Universe and Debian

Thursday, April 28, 2011

I install Iceweasel/Firefox 4 in Debian Squeeze


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300px-iceweasel-icon.png I finally took my own advice and installed Iceweasel/Firefox 4 on my Debian Squeeze machine.

So far I don’t notice any performance improvements or regressions, but I’ve been running the browser all of an hour.

The search box in FlatPress only searches blog titles, not full text


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I just found out that the search function built into FlatPress does not look at the text of the entries but only at the titles (and possibly the tags; I’ll have to check on that one).

I know this because I was searching for an entry, and it wouldn’t come up when searching for a word I knew was in the body of the entry but not necessarily the title.

It’s not a FlatPress deal-breaker, but bloggers might want to explore the alternatives. I’ve been using the Google Custom Search box on some of my other blogs, and that works very well.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

FlatPress revs to 0.1010.1 to fix login/authentication exploit


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fp-logo-smaller.png If you’re running a FlatPress blog, keeping an eye on the main site and the forums lets you know about any potential problems with the software as well as available solutions.

That’s especially the case right now as forum member pierovdfn has released a patch to one of the PHP files in FlatPress that eliminates a potential exploit in the authentication code.

FlatPress creator NowhereMan has already updated the FlatPress code and released it as 0.1010.1.

For existing FlatPress installations, applying the patch is as easy as swapping in 21 lines of PHP code. I did it this morning, and everything is working fine.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Debian on a 1995 Sparcstation 20 in 2011 - Part 1: Prelude


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Linux in general, and not Debian in specific, left the 32-bit SPARC platform behind a few years ago. There are no kernel hackers working on 32-bit SPARC, I’ve learned.

And while NetBSD still builds for 32-bit SPARC (and dozens of other architectures), I’ve found the 5.x series of NetBSD to be too crashy to use.

OpenBSD also supports 32-bit SPARC, and while those releases have always been solid (I’ve tried everything from 4.4 to 4.9-current), there isn’t much in the way of desktop software for the architecture. There are few packages, and most ports that aren’t already packages won’t build (or they’d probably be packages, too).

A year or so ago I tried to bring Debian to my 1995-era Sparcstation 20, a box I bought for $10 and not too much shipping, adding components that usually cost me $10 or less (30-something GB SCSI hard drive, CD drive, floppy drive, keyboard and mouse).

I did it for fun. And to learn. Most everything with old hardware is a learning experience.
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Thursday, April 7, 2011

No, a 16-year-old Sun Sparcstation doesn’t work like a new x86 box


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My recent foray into running the 1995-era Sun Sparcstation 20, lately with OpenBSD, isn’t because I think a 16-year-old box will be in any way comparable to a modern (or even 10-year-old) Intel-based box.

Because it won’t.

Honestly, I didn’t know what to think when I got the SS20 for $10 a few years ago. But I wasn’t out a lot of money. I made sure to wait for a Sparcstation that was close to home to minimize shipping costs.

In case you’re wondering (and I know you are), it’s almost impossible to do “modern” computing on the Sparc. If it were a 64-bit SPARC box and not a 32-bit architecture, there would be a whole lot more options.

As it is, with 32-bit Sparc and Solaris 9 you can run the old Netscape browser that shipped in 2003. You can find packages for Firefox 2.0.0.x. That’s about it.

No current Linux that I know of runs on 32-bit SPARC. Again, 64-bit is a different story. Even FreeBSD runs on 64-bit only.
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Friday, April 1, 2011

Blogsum (not Bloxsom) for blogging in OpenBSD


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Blogsum is a written-from-scratch blogging application meant for use in the chroot web environment of OpenBSD. It uses an sqlite database and Perl on the back end.

The developer uses it for his Obfuscurity. blog.

Thanks to Chess Griffin, in whose Twitter feed I learned of this project.


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Steven Rosenberg writes about many things in many places, including Debian (and FlatPress) right here.

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Strict Standards: Only variables should be passed by reference in /home1/passjoe/public_html/debian/fp-includes/smarty/plugins/function.list_categories.php on line 33

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