playing at the beach

2013-03-11 | #Owen Family

Michele and Caralyne left for Antioch this last weekend, to help my Father in Law paint, and get their hair “did” for Jessica’s up and coming wedding. That left Owen and I alone, and while I didn’t chop down any tree’s, we did make the best of our time together. I told Owen that we would go to the beach, which is one of his favorite things to do. It can always be a dicey situation with Owen though, he’s very particular about when and what he’ll eat, and the terrible consequences of missing out on a meal.

a geeks right of passage


Caralyne built her own computer this weekend! It is hard to contain my excitement for a moment like this, and I’ve been slowly cultivating patiently brainwashing encouraging Caralyne’s computer interests. I also, would like to have my computer back, so this project had many benefits. To share the experience, and to make sure we had enough perspective and patience, I had Steve and Summer (and William) come over for a BBQ as well.

site migration


I’m moving this blog to: The back-end publishing platform is also changing from WordPress to Octoress I thought I was clever, struggling through the wordpress export all by myself… If I would have just gone a quick Google search, I would have seen the 20 or so new Octopress blogs that converted from WordPress Since I would like to retain my “identity” according to Google, I configured Octopress to use the same Article perma-link format as Wordpress.

ftp stuff


After looking at yesterdays transfer logs on the Colo FTP server, I decided to grok the fields in the xferlog and put them to use. The ftp transfer log is in /var/log/xferlog. It it rotated daily, and compressed with bz. I’m using yesterdays log, so I have to look at, and use bzgrep to find all of the “Jan 16” transfers. After today, we can reliably use bzcat. Here is a snippet: Wed Jan 16 23:57:23 2013 19 10.

dell f1dh


We bought a stack of Dell servers off of eBay for work. The price was great, I think it was about $3K for 20 1U Dell servers. 8GB RAM, Dual Xeon, and 4 SATA drives in each one. They even have a MegaRAID on board, how perfect is that? I installed FreeBSD 9.1 on two of them, used ZFS, and they are both running nicely. We then decided to stand one up as a Windows 2003 R2 server, because everything was going over so well.

committed to passenger


I’ve pretty much transitioned off of Apache and PHP in favor of Nginx and Passenger to run my Rails and Python applications. Except Even this WordPress based blog. I don’t even host it anymore, my good friend Christopher has allowed me to run it on his Colo server. Where I currently live, there are a lot of trees and power outages, so I cannot reliably run a server there. BUT, for the few sites that I really don’t care about uptime, I’ve been working on the following:

quick awk trick

2012-11-11 | #awk #Bacula #Geekyness

While managing a Bacula environment, I occasionally found it useful to find savesets that were still on the Storage Node beyond the life of our retention policy. Since Bacula does not actually erase old volumes if the client next contacts the server again, they hang around and it usually requires manual intervention. find . -mtime +30d -print | xargs du | awk '{ sum += $1;count++ }END{print (sum/1024/1024),count}'

running gitorious on freebsd

2012-11-06 | #FreeBSD #Geekyness #Git #gitorious #Nginx

Gitorious has some documentation on a local install for Ubuntu, RHEL, and Debian, which turned out to be slightly outdated. Now that they have leveraged the Bundler GEM manager, the installation process is much simpler. FreeBSD is by far my platform of choice when it comes to flexible and complex open source applications, and it was a cinch to reuse the Linux documentation. Aside from having to re-write the init scripts, the entire process was very easy, and I got to try out a few different web servers for the heck of it.

year one the good the bad and the weird

2012-11-02 | #Caralyne #Family #Featured #Owen

Since I/we (the family) have made a fairly drastic change in our lives, I thought I would give the “Year One” run down. In pictures only. todo My first day at work, and the last time I showed up before 8am! todo The room I rented while the family was in antioch was a real gem. The manager of the home ripped the bathroom out after he cashed my first check.

bacula framework on github

2012-09-21 | #Backups #Bacula #CouchDB #Featured #FreeBSD #Geekyness #General #Python

I’m pretty happy with the Bacula environment I’ve created. It has gone through a few iterations, and I’ve learned a lot since I started using it a few years ago. I think its only appropriate to share the evolution of my environment with as many people as possible, and I hope it can help save new bacula administrators some time. Enough of the preamble, here is my github project page: https://github.