I find it odd that a Mars Bar transitions to a Milky Way (and vice versa) in going from the UK to the USA. What kind of marketing genius thought of that one?

NVidia's interest in acquiring ARM could have serious implications for China.

Imagine the situation where China no longer has access to ARM technology.

It would decimate their mobile phone businesses and see the end of cheap hobbyist boards and 32-bit 3D Printer controllers etc.

It could be an ultimate political sanction and a clear demonstration that we shouldn't become too dependent on single-sourced technology.

Hehe. Tinkering with systemd networking over a SSH connection sometimes produces unexpected results. Good thing that I have a USB-UART cable and minicom to fix any breakage.

You can now buy RISC-V processors in a similar format to the ARM devices used on Bluepill boards. Programming is supported on PlatformIO with a programmer like the USB Blaster.


I really want to build a PDP-11/03 replica. I know the front panel was nothing to shout about (just a few switches and accompanying LEDs) and the dual 8-inch floppy disk drives were clunky.

But I did so much good work on those machines. Fortran IV running under RT-11 was great fun. You'd compile a program and be subjected to clank-clank-clank. It was somehow magical.

Software choices are a bit more limited than my previous incarnation.

I'm having to replace Cyrus-IMAP with Dovecot but that's always been an option for me.

Replacing the Cyrus-SASL LDAP backend with an SQL one will need more thought. The choice of MariaDB or PostgreSQL isn't the issue, it's more a case of making a schema that will satisfy the authentication preferences of various applications.


Tinkering with new server build.

Installed archlinux|ARM onto the Odroid HC1 and migrated / onto BTRFS filesystem on SSD.

Using systemd-nspawn containers for running services works nicely. You can take a BTRFS snapshot of the container tree and update that.

Provisioning containers is easy with BTRFS subvolumes and pacstrap.

I now need to set up networking for the containers. Probably a bridge that I can connect the containers to and route to/from using Shorewall firewall rules.


Linux user for ~20 years: Kubuntu on Desktop (previously Arch, openSUSE, Fedora), Ubuntu and Debian on servers. Have built my own distro / live-cd back in the day 🙂. Was a great learning experience for me then.

Like, use and advocate for Linux and open source software. Also, write about it, when I can. Program in Python most of the time. Other interests — self-hosting, static sites, theme development and user interfaces.

Like Mastodon compared to other networks :)

Jeez self-hosting email is getting harder.

I had an email to a mac.com address bounced back to me with a 500 Service unavailable, rejected due to policy.

You'd have thought that they could check the DKIM signature and SPF of my relay which handed the mail to them.

But no, they crawled through all the headers checking the hosts involved in the email's passage and they ended-up at my home gateway.

They rejected the email because of its dynamic IP origin. What hope do we have? 😔

Has anyone noticed this trend with Spammers?

You receive multiple emails with a common theme. In my latest they are Woodworking Plans.

Looking at the website associated with ownership of the IP block used in the Spam activity you see a professional looking site advertising cloud-based hosting services.

You're almost inclined to feel sorry for them, thinking "Oh, one of their client's account has been compromised!". Well, don't these are just slick-looking fronts for criminal Spam operations.

Systemd gets a lot of negative comments but I must say, in my efforts to create a server with an Odroid HC1, when I ask myself "How can I, minimally, do this or that?" often the answer is "Systemd can do it!".

OK, I understand that for a desktop or laptop tethered to a local network there's a lot of functionality in systemd that you probably won't use. For standalone devices it's a real asset because the low-level stuff you need is there and it integrates well within itself.

Oh no, the world is ending!

Synaptic shows 3049 packages installed and Neofetch shows 3050. 😂

That feeling when you receive all the parts to assemble your headless Odroid HC1 server.

You watched all the setup videos online, flashed ArchLinuxARM onto a microSD card. Put it all together, connected it up and powered on and... no networking.

Why did I believe those videos and not bother to order the USB to UART module so I can do a console login? Ah well. 😩

Spent some time investigating why my emails deliver to Spam folders on Hotmail, live and outlook hosted recipients.

It was down to reputation and two of my security measures on my server were damaging it.

One was greylisting and the other was VRFY being disabled. So, it appears that these mail operators check sender email address validity and score you accordingly.

So, I've disabled those features and run a few validity and test emails and there you go. 😕

I've been thinking about providing database access on website content.

I, obviously, know about PHP but there's many versions of it and ... libraries.

So I was thinking what programming language exists that gives you the ability to access databases easily and works with a Web server. And ... Perl.

I haven't used Perl in years but why not. With NGiNX and, some newer CGI handling technology, it could be just what I'm looking for. 🤔

There's a lot of talk in the UK that Huawei's involvement in the rollout of 5G is a security risk.

Surely, by the same analogy, the weaponising of the base of Huawei and Honor phones by China could be an equally big risk.

Why is nobody talking about this aspect?

I understand the level of feeling against slavery in society and I agree with it.

However the use of the terms Master and Slave define a relationship that many suggested replacements cannot equal.

Would there be as much outcry against the use of the terms Superior and Inferior?

I really think there's a point to be made that "It isn't all about Social Justice!" and we should seriously consider the impact of making these changes.

Morning spent at the Airgun Club. We've had a couple of plinking (shooting at a field of knockdown targets) sessions.

This weekend I organised a HFT (Hunter Field Target - targets in lanes with rules on layout) competition.

We were all rusty from not shooting over the past few months but it was great to see smiling faces under the face masks.

It was just what people needed to shake off the Covid-19 blues. Nice to receive warm thanks from participants for the effort made in arranging it.

I had a nozzle jam on my Creality CR-10S Pro today. The symptoms leading-up to it were not typical - it was over-extruding.

The filament has broken back at the extruder and really doesn't want to come out of the hotend.

I'm not going to try and resurrect it. I have a Trianglelab BMG clone extruder and Bozzl all-metal hotend with hardened steel nozzle on order.

When they arrive I'll install them as a pair and hopefully I'll be up-and-running again on that machine.

For those planning on upgrading Linux Mint 19.3 to 20 following the update route, expect minor issues.

Backup PPA and 3rd-party repository files from /etc/apt/sources.list.d because they will be lost (you'll need to edit their content).

I had a glitch with the MySQL server process restart due to permission being denied on a /proc file (the upgrade is done mostly as a regular user with sudo needed at times).

I have a boot message that initramfs decode failed. Needs investigation. 🤔

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Fosstodon is an English speaking Mastodon instance that is open to anyone who is interested in technology; particularly free & open source software.