Where Have You Been All My Life? Rlwrap

December 13, 2009

Back in the days of yore (when sysadmins still had to bang two rocks together to do their job), we didn’t have command line history. No, we typed every command by hand. If we had to type the same 110-character command-line several times, we typed those 550 characters ourselves, mistakes and all, and by gum, […]

Read the full article →

But It’s Only A Slash: svn.access

September 10, 2009

I spent the good part of my morning today debugging an issue with a user’s access to a Subversion repository/trac service we provide. That person could not get even a basic svn checkout to work as expected. It would keep throwing errors like this: Server sent unexpected return value (403 Forbidden) in response to OPTIONS […]

Read the full article →

Talk Amongst Yourselves

August 24, 2009

We just purchased a few new phones to replace our aging tin cans on a string at home. On the sage advice of some other techies I know, we purchased a few phones based on the DECT standard. IMHO, one of the coolest things about the DECT phones is they freakin’ talk to each other. […]

Read the full article →

Piracy, the Sincerest Form of Flattery?

August 23, 2009

Well, I think the book has hit the big time because I randomly stumbled on not one, not two, but four separate places where people had uploaded my book to some of the grey matter (both kinds) sharing sites. In particular, there’s a Thai-speaking user whose been very busy being naughty. At least one site […]

Read the full article →

Fixing the SQLite DB for a Trac Instance

August 20, 2009

’bout time I add some sysadmin content here. If you ever have a trac instance go boom with an error like “DatabaseError: database disk image is malformed” you can often fix the problem by doing an sqlite dump/reload:

Read the full article →

PMotD: Text::Balanced

July 31, 2009

If you’ve read Jeffrey Friedl’s Mastering Regular Expressions[1. and if you haven’t–you really should. It is a bit light on plot and character development, but it is definitely required reading] you’ll recall that one of the things that is a lot harder than it looks to get right using regexps is extracting the content from […]

Read the full article →

PMotD: Devel::Deprecate

July 27, 2009

Today’s interesting Perl module of the Day:  Devel::Deprecate by Curtis “Ovid” Poe. Back in 2000, I started teaching a class called “Perl Saves the Day: Writing Small Perl Programs to Get Out of Big SysAdmin Pinches” which was essentially a class about Perl hacks and how to use them responsibly in System Administration. One of my […]

Read the full article →

And We Have a Winner!

July 13, 2009

Kudos goes to Thomas Leyer of Germany for finding the very first typo in the printed version of the book. Books like these have an amazing amount of detail so it is not uncommon for a few small things to slip through (in this case it was a single missing dash). I’m very thankful when […]

Read the full article →

Welcome Back, Otter

June 15, 2009
Thumbnail image for Welcome Back, Otter

I’m thrilled and delighted to announce that Automating System Administration with Perl, the second edition of the semi-famed Otter Book (the book formerly known as Perl for System Administration) has been published by O’Reilly Media. The Otter Book is available now in paper and electronic form. Be sure to get your copy now!

Read the full article →