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Ben's blog

  • VM stuck on a task

    I’ve recently lost control of a VM that was stuck at 95% of a task. I waited and tried to regain control of the VM, nothing helped. This is how I got around it:

    SSH into the ESX on which the VM is instantiated
    cat /proc/vmware/vm/*/names | grep <vm_name>
    note the vmid
    /proc/vmware/vm/<vmid>/cpu/status
    note the group vmid
    /usr/lib/vmware/bin/vmkload_app -k 9 <group_vmid>
    

    That’s it!

  • Sacrilegious food

    2009-09-07-202043

    [insert gag reflex onomatopoeia here]

  • ssh tunnel to circumvent a firewall

    My work place like many others has a pretty restrictive firewall that doesn’t let me ssh into my own machine. To get in the network, one has to use VPN which means that a furious battle will rage getting this to work in linux; but above all you won’t get to ssh from your phone.

    So if you have a home server, run the following command on your work machine and it will create a tunnel from your work machine to your home server:

    ssh -f -N -R 1337:localhost:22 root@home_server

    Now login to your home server and when you

    ssh localhost -p 1337

    You will in fact be sshing to your work machine via magic fairies & such.

    It adds a level of indirection which sucks major balls, so you can copy some keys and get all that automated but I don’t want to go into these details. Figure it out.

    You can go away now.

  • Count how many file descriptors are being used by every process of a certain name

    here’s a neat little command:

    ps -ae | grep <process_name> | perl -lane ‘print $F[0]’ | while read filename; do ls /proc/$filename/fd; done | wc -w

    just replace process_name by httpd for example and it’ll tell you how many file descriptions are in use by all the processes with http in them.

  • Shit I get in the mail #3

    Une petite merveille est arrivee dernierement dans notre boite aux lettres. Il faut savoir que de nos jours, le phenomenes des Harleys n’a plus rien a voir avec Easy Rider. Plutot, ces joujoux sont reservees aux hommes aises en pleine crise de quarantaine.

    Ils sortent leurs becanes le week end (quand il ne fait pas trop froid), vetus de cuir flambant neuf et se la jouent a outrance. Je suis sur qu’ils ont la trique quand ils apercoient leur propre image reflechie par la fenetre d’un batiment.

    Le spectacle est bien evidement aussi pitoyable que bruyant, car pour attirer l’attention il faut faire le plus de vacarme possible avec sa petrolette.

    Bref, cette offre s’addresse directement a ces gars.

    what a piece of crap

    what a piece of crap

    Au dos de l’offre, voici le texte qui vise a vous vendre la gerbe (traduction ci dessous)

    bwahaha

    bwahaha

    Chevauche avec la libertee:

    La vie est une aventure sur deux roues. Quand la libertee appelle, quelques hommes attrapent leur blousons de cuir et le guidon de chrome d’un chopper americain, ils le pointent vers le vent, et amenent la libertee jusqu’a ses limites. Maintenant tu peux t’habiller pour le frisson de la route alors que tu glisses dans la chaleur de ce blouson en cuir dur, faisant savoir a tout le monde que tu appartiens a cette bande d’esprits libres. […]

    bwahahaha 😀

  • Cats & air dust removers

  • Marketing that works with me

    The marketing geniuses finally hit the sweet spot by realizing that every guy likes stuff that blows up.

    price blaster

    In the U.S. of A they don’t just reduce, decrease or even cut prices. They blast them! Fuck yeah! Give me 10 bags of that shit!

  • Postfix & Spamassassin integration allowing for custom processing

    This assumes that you have postfix installed and running as your SMTP server

    First, make sure that you’re root

    whoami

    I probably shouldn’t have to explain that if you’re reading this but just in case; if that last command returned something else than ‘root’ issue the following command

    sudo su

    and enter your password

    step 1: Let’s install the packages we’re gonna need

    apt-get update
    apt-get install spamassassin spamc

    step 2: Now we configure spamassasin

    cat /etc/default/spamassassin | sed -e 's#ENABLED=0#ENABLED=1#g' > /etc/default/spamassassin
    cat /etc/default/spamassassin | sed -e 's#CRON=0#CRON=1#g' > /etc/default/spamassassin
    cat /etc/spamassassin/local.cf | set -e 's## rewrite_header Subject *****SPAM*****#rewrite_header Subject [*****SPAM*****] > /etc/spamassassin/local.cf

    and we start/restart it

    /etc/init.d/spamassassin restart

    step 3: We create a little script that will take desired action upon spamassassin flagging

    create a user called spamassassin (or whatever you want as long as you keep it consistent)

    useradd -m spamassassin

    then edit the script file /home/spamassassin/spamcheck and throw the following in it

     # variables
     
    SENDMAIL="/usr/sbin/sendmail -i"
     
    EGREP=/bin/egrep
     
    SPAMLIMIT=10
     
    # exit codes from <sysexits.h>
     
    EX_UNAVAILABLE=69
     
    # clean up when done or when aborting.
     
    trap "rm -f /tmp/out.$$" 0 1 2 3 15
     
    # pipe message to spamc
     
    cat | /usr/bin/spamc -u spamd > /tmp/out.$$
     
    # are there more than $SPAMLIMIT stars in X-Spam-Level header? :
     
    if $EGREP -q "^X-Spam-Level: *{$SPAMLIMIT,}" < /tmp/out.$$
     
    then
     
    # option 1: move spam messages to sideline dir so a human can look at them later:
     
    mv /tmp/out.$$ /home/spamassassin/`date +%Y-%m-%d_%R`-$$
     
    # option 2: divert spam message to an alternate e-mail address:
     
    #$SENDMAIL xyz@xxxx.xx < /tmp/out.$$
     
    # option 3: just delete the spam message
     
    # rm -f /tmp/out.$$
     
    # option 4: still relay the email to the recipient with the subject of the email now containing [*****SPAM*****]
     
    # $SENDMAIL "$@" < /tmp/out.$$
     
    else
     
    $SENDMAIL "$@" < /tmp/out.$$
     
    fi
     
    # Postfix returns the exit status of the Postfix sendmail command.
     
    exit $?

    make sure that you

    chown spamassassin:spamassassin /home/spamassassin/spamcheck
    chmod 750 /home/spamassassin/spamcheck

    step 4: Ok, so we got spamassassin going and a little script that will take an email and throw it in /home/spamassassin if it’s spam (if you chose option1) now we just need to tell postfix to pass all messages to that script

    edit /etc/postfix/master.cf and replace

    smtp      inet  n       -       -       -       -       smtpd

    with

    smtp      inet  n       -       n       -       -       smtpd -o content_filter=spamcheck:dummy

    also add the following 2 lines at the bottom of the file (the indentation is important)

    spamcheck   unix  -       n       n       -       10      pipe
    
    flags=Rq user=spamassassin argv=/bin/spamcheck -f ${sender} -- ${recipient}

    We’re almost there, just restart postfix and you’re good to go!

    /etc/init.d/postfix restart

    If you wanna test that out, watch the log while you send emails to your servers

    tail -f /var/log/syslog

    send a clean mail, make sure that it reaches destination, then send something you know will get flagged as spam and make sure it ends up in /home/spamassasin instead of the intended recipient.

    The reason we choose option 1 here is because there’s no point in still relaying a flagged email as it will still clog the recipient’s mailbox. On the other hand we don’t want to just delete it if spamassassin makes a mistake we want to play it safe and keep every emails should something arise, we quarantine the bad ones in /home/spamassassin

    Lastly, as long as you have postfix just feeding the emails to a script like we just did, it’s easy to become fancier and do all kinds of processing to the email, on my server I actually call a php script that throws emails in a DB.

  • Silly Apache warning

    If the following happens to you:

    apache2: Could not reliably determine the server's fully qualified domain name, using 127.0.1.1 for ServerName

    just issue a:

    echo Servername `cat /etc/hostname` >> /etc/apache2/apache2.conf

    Tested on: Ubuntu server 9.04 32b / Ubuntu 12.04 64b

  • Balloons

    Sad balloons are sad

    2009-06-03-113804

    Proud balloon reporting for duty!

    2009-06-03-113859

    A month after being saved from the corporate world, this is what’s left of the welcome balloons that were kindly positioned at my new desk.

    This little guy’s been floating for 38 days. When it finally gives in I’m giving it a Viking funeral.