Loud ramblings of a Software Artisan

Tuesday 18 March 2008

I'm no longer operational...

... and none of my circuits are functioning properly.

R.I.P. Arthur C Clarke.

Sunday 26 February 2006

Linux Server Hacks

Linux Server Hacks by Rob Flickenger is one of these "general purpose" books that you learn lot of things from. 100 hacks that actually teach you how to use Linux system tools more efficiently; if you administer Linux servers for a living, I highly recommend it.

Sunday 29 January 2006


By a snowy evening, I just finished reading Postfix, the definitive guide, by Kyle D. Dent.

I have two regrets about that book:

  1. I haven't read it earlier.
  2. I don't own it.

This book answers most questions you have about Postfix, how to use it and how to configure it.

I first installed Postfix in 1999 to start replacing the old Sendmail on the FreeBSD boxes we were using as SMTP gateway to feed incoming mail to the e-mail system that was choosen. It is way easier to use than Sendmail as you don't have to learn the turing complete syntax of sendmail.cf, and it fits the bill for 99% of the use cases (I still don't see the 1% missing).

Monday 16 January 2006

Winter tech reading

Technical books I recently read. The choice comes from the availability of said books for me to borrow (from the office):

  • Linux Unwired, co-authored by Edd Dumbill. It is all about getting you Linux system wireless connected, be it through Wifi, Bluetooth, IRDA or even cellular phone. A good practical book on how to handle these technologies, even though they have evolved since. But reading this book is sometime still a bit depressing as well as the state of wireless on Linux

And from the sysadmin corner:

  • Spamassassin is a practical book for whoever wants to deploy Spamassassin on his email system. I explain how to install with various MTA, including Postfix. We should still leverage the problem of how to make a bayesian filter trained by the user seemlessly. Thunderbird marks messages as junk (on the IMAP server), but this information is not forwarded to a sever side filter. It would we be so much more efficient to have the IMAP server notify the junk flag change and run the message to the spam filter for the bayesian training. It would make so much sense... (and at the same time have Evolution do the same as Thunderbird for that aspect of junkmail handling).
  • Kerberos, the definitive guide an all-in-one manual for deploying the Kerberos authentication system into your organisation. Kerberos is a secure distributed authentication system developed at MIT, designed to allow single-sign-on login. It works on UNIX, MacOS X and Windows 2000 (it is part of Active Directory).