Creating a tarball for distribution (without user/group information)

A tarball is the common way to convey several files on UNIX systems. But because tar was originally intended for backup, it stores not only the permission information, but also the owner and group of each file. Try listing the content of a tarball with e.g. $ tar -tzvf thestuff.tar.gz Note the “v” flag that [...]

Linux kernel: Dumping a module’s content for regression check

After making a lot of whitespace reorganization in a kernel module (indentation, line breaks, fixing things reported by sparse and checkpatch), I wanted to make sure I didn’t really change anything. All edits were of the type that the compiler should be indifferent about, but how can I be sure I didn’t change anything accidentally? [...]

Perl + Linux: Properly cleaning up a forking script after it exits

Leave no leftover childred One of the really tricky things about a Perl script that forks this way or another, is how to make sure that the children vanish after the parent has exited. This is an issue both if the children were created with a fork() call, or with a safe pipe, as with [...]

Installing Vivado 2020.1 on Linux Mint 19

… or any other “unsupported” Linux distribution. … or: How to trick the installer into thinking you’re running one of the supported OSes. So I wanted to install Vivado 2020.1 on my Linux Mint 19 (Tara) machine. I downloaded the full package, and ran xsetup. A splash window appeared, and soon after it another window [...]

Writing to a disk even when df says zero available space

Just a quick note to remind myself: There’s a gap between the size of a disk, the used space and the available space. It’s quite well-known that a certain percentage of the disk (that’s 200 GB on a 3.6 TB backup disk) is saved for root-only writes. So the reminder is: No problem filling the [...]

The sledge hammer: Forcing a permanent screen resolution mode on Linux

When to do this Because Gnome desktop is sure it knows what’s best for me, and it’s virtually impossible to just tell it that I want this screen resolution mode and no other, there is only one option left: Lie about the monitor’s graphics mode capabilities. Make the kernel feed it with fake screen information [...]

Root over NFS remains read only with Linux v5.7

Upgrading the kernel should be quick and painless… After upgrading the kernel from v5.3 to 5.7, a lot of systemd services failed (Debian 8), in particular systemd-remount-fs: ● systemd-remount-fs.service – Remount Root and Kernel File Systems Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/systemd-remount-fs.service; static) Active: failed (Result: exit-code) since Sun 2020-07-26 15:28:15 IDT; 17min ago Docs: man:systemd-remount-fs.service(8) Process: [...]

Turning off DSN on sendmail to prevent backscatter

I sent that? One morning, I got a bounce message from my own mail sendmail server, saying that it failed to deliver a message I never sent. That’s red alert. It means that someone managed to provoke my mail server to send an outbound message. It’s red alert, because my mail server effectively relays spam [...]

When umount says target is busy, but no process can be blamed

A short one: What to do if unmount is impossible with a # umount /path/to/mount umount: /path/to/mount: target is busy but grepping the output of lsof for the said path yields nothing. In other words, the mount is busy, but no process can be blamed for accessing it (even as a home directory). If this [...]

LG OLED with a Linux computer: Getting that pitch black

Introduction So I got myself an LG OLED65B9. It’s huge and a really nice piece of electronics. I opted out the bells and whistles, and connected it via HDMI to my already existing media computer, running Linux Mint 18.1. All I wanted was a plain (yet very high quality) display. However at some point I [...]