Showing posts from April, 2017

Updates Galore, Also Thunderbird With New Theme

Updates for Thunderbird, LibreOffice, Evolution Data Server, Firefox, tracker, webkitgtk, calibre, imagemagick and inkscape. This is all over the place. Thankfully, these are point releases / updates. I am guessing that they contain fixes for bugs and compatibility issues. Doing the updates while Handel's Messiah is playing. And the chorus ...

Forty-nine packages updated in all. Some of these updates are still part of GNOME 3.24. I have downloaded a new theme for Thunderbird from this website as recommended by OMG Ubuntu. I'm using that theme here.

Thunderbird with new Monterail theme

Grub Update

I updated grub today. Grand universal bootloader, grub for short. This has the potential of turning your system into an unbootable mess. Those with customized kernels and added kernel modules, watch out.

Dogs: Song Review - The Review Part

Dogs by Pink Floyd, written by Roger Waters and David Gilmour is the first part of this blog post about the song "Dogs". I remember a classmate back in highschool who did a paper on dogs, the real ones, but that's another topic. I heard he's doing it and I thought that he's jumping this song review forty years later in some sort of time warp effect. But I'm doing it now and I'm not stoned and I'm not flying through time. I am standing firmly on the ground, "ground down in the end" as the song goes.
I find the world as pictured by "Dogs" as terrible as any dystopian writer can imagine. "If you have to be trusted by the people you lie to", just to "get the chance to put the knife in"? Whatever happened to dogs are man's best friend? No doubt how disturbing the world is in this song, when "you gotta keep one eye looking over your shoulder". The over powering paranoia is well established and strength…

Dogs: Song Review

This song is part of the Animal album, the tenth album by the English rock group Pink Floyd. It is 17 minutes long in the album version. The album was released January 1973 in the U.K. It's original title was "You've Gotta Be Crazy".
Dogs written by Roger Waters, David Gilmour from album Animals by Pink Floyd
You gotta be crazy, you gotta have a real need
You gotta sleep on your toes, and when you're on the street
You gotta be able to pick out the easy meat with your eyes closed
And then moving in silently, down wind and out of sight
You gotta strike when the moment is right without thinking And after a while, you can work on points for style
Like the club tie, and the firm handshake
A certain look in the eye and an easy smile
You have to be trusted by the people that you lie to
So that when they turn their backs on you,
You'll get the chance to put the knife in You gotta keep one eye looking over your shoulder
You know it's going to get harder, and harder, and harder as…

Got Megasync Fixed ; AIDE's 'floating point exception error'

The update this week involves GNOME 3.24(upgrade) but before that there was Firefox and Google Chrome. Some things broke down.
I'm happy to report I was able to update megasync in AUR and this update fixed the issue with openssl.
I was able to restore all my keyboard shortcuts. Nothing like a good reboot and checking wouldn't straighten out.
I have disabled AIDE and Rkhunter for now in crontab. I am getting a floating point exception error running AIDE. I can't figure it out even after doing some practical troubleshooting and checking its config file. I'll restore rkhunter in crontab or maybe in systemd today.

Intel Optane Memory

Intel Optane Memory is a data caching technology that bridges DRAM and the big storage spaces of the hard disks in your computer system. Caching the crucial bits of data and storing them in faster SSD's is a solution already being used in hybrid hard disks. Intel's solution requires 7th generation Intel processors and motherboards that are compatible. Initial benchmarks places it in the same level as NVMe. Intel's website claims a 28% increase in speed overall.

GNOME 3.24: Update Woes

The first thing I did after that massive update is to reboot. This
should not affect the reboot process but, here goes.

Big sigh of relief. Here's a list of my woes so far:

First, megasync daemon is failing to work / start at login. And starting
the application with the launcher doesn't work either. It looks like it
has problems with openssl / authentication.

Second, screenshot isn't working, at least not the keyboard shortcuts. I
opened the application - screenshot, and it takes pictures of the screen
but it won't work in practice if it doesn't work with the keyboard

Third, most keyboard shortcuts I tried aren't working. Not the
screenshots, not the Guake terminal i use. Navigation shortcuts are
working though. Could user shortcuts have been reset by the update to
their defaults somehow?

Big Update With GNOME 3.24

These are the first pieces of GNOME 3.24 my system is getting with today's update.

[donato@archdesktop ~]$ sudo pacman -Syu
[sudo] password for donato:
:: Synchronizing package databases...
core is up to date
extra 1704.5 KiB 167K/s 00:10 [#######################] 100%
community is up to date
:: Starting full system upgrade...
resolving dependencies...
looking for conflicting packages...
Packages (217) adwaita-icon-theme-3.24.0-1 apache-2.4.25-2
appstream-glib-0.6.11-1 apr-1.5.2-2 apr-util-1.5.4-3
at-spi2-atk-2.24.0-1 at-spi2-core-2.24.0-1 atk-2.24.0-2
atkmm-2.24.2+1+gf30b47f-2 baobab-3.24.0+1+g202d168-1
bind-tools-9.11.1-1 ca-certificates-mozilla-3.30.2-1
cairomm-1.12.2-2 calibre-2.83.0-2 cheese-3.24.0-1
clutter-1.26.0+35+g9c4330b6d-1 clutter-gst-3.0.24-1
cogl-1.22.2+10+g3baa2d7a-1 colord-1.3.5-1 coreutils-8.27-1
curl-7.54.0-2 dbus-1.10.…

Google-Chrome Update from 57 --> 58

I know I got the notification late. AUR updated google-chrome last 19th but better late than never. So I prepared my installation directory.

#mkdir ~/Downloads/builds/google-chrome-58
##to create the directory for google-chrome-58 the new version

#cd ~/Downloads/builds/google-chrome-58
#git clone
#cd google-chrome
#makepkg -sic
##to download the package and install dependencies with pacman



Mozilla Firefox Updates from 52 --> 53

Firefox browser updates from version 52 to 53.

Firefox 53 contains the new compositor from Project Quantum. The compositor is responsible for presenting the images in the browser as a seamless whole. It boasts less crashes due to various elements in the web.
You can look at the release notes for Firefox version 53 here.

Blood Chem

I took the last of my maintenance medicine. Before I ask my doctor for a new prescription I scheduled my blood and urine analysis last Tuesday. I fast for 12 hours - no food, no medicines.
Then they take a blood sample and a urine sample the next morning at Meditroops. The moment of truth comes later in the day. My uric acid level, cholesterol levels, Triglycerides, HDL and LDL are all within normal values. My FBS (sugar) is as always normal. This is the 3rd time tests came out normal. I do this every 4 months or so.
I am happy that my medicines and dieting and exercise is working. I still am over weight. I want to work on that.

Focused On An Online Course And A Podcast For The Hacker

Found two useful websites for someone interested in web design and html and also for the beginner hacker.
First there's DASH an online course for understanding html and javascripting.
Second is a podcasting duo at I especially like their episodes on linux terminal and openvpn server.

GNOME Music's Hit And Miss Affair

I like Gnome's Music. It is their default music player. It depends on tracker for data files that could be played.

Listening to it play my music files is heavenly but I have to contend with the hit and miss affair whenever I try to start it. So I figured I show it when I start it in the terminal.

[donato@archdesktop ~]$ gnome-music

(gnome-music:3589): GdkPixbuf-CRITICAL **: gdk_pixbuf_composite: assertion 'dest_x >= 0 && dest_x + dest_width <= dest->width' failed

(gnome-music:3589): Grilo-WARNING **: [registry] ../grilo/src/grl-registry.c:1092: Plugin '/usr/lib/grilo-0.3/' already exists

(gnome-music:3589): Grilo-WARNING **: [tracker-source-request] ../grilo-plugins/src/tracker/grl-tracker-source-api.c:504:     error in parsing query id=2 : unable to open database file
20:51:43 WARNING    can't find artwork for album '…

Ubuntu 17.04 Zesty Zapus Final Release


Ubuntu 17.04 Final Release is now available for download. Please read the release notes. Browse their download page here. This is the link for the torrent file for the 64 bit desktop Ubuntu 17.04. Seed after you download. This is open source and free software. We're bigger than any people or company.

Sofia Puey's Art - Colors And Lines


Sofia Puey's Art

Etching - chemical action on a metal plate - Sofia Puey

Point Update for Thunderbird Email Application

Lightning add-on for Thunderbird

A point update for Thunderbird is now available. Lightning is now working with the newest version.

Thunderbird Update 45 -> 52

This is a milestone update for Thunderbird Email Application. From version 45 to version 52. Here's the link to the release notes. Lots of new features, fixes and changes in this new version. Review the release notes and see what affects your work flow. As always, an add-on is not yet updated for this version. Lightning is disabled until it can be updated.

Canonical Goes Back To GNOME

Mark Shuttleworth announced Ubuntu is discontinuing Unity8 and convergence. He said in his blog that Ubuntu 18.04 LTS is going back to GNOME desktop. Ubuntu is doing well in IOT and The Cloud. This is where the company is bringing its money.

Openvpn On My Machine: Easy-RSA: Building My Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) part I

I have been on the lookout for third party VPN providers for a year now. Since the start of 2017, privacy is in the top of my to-do list. After installing Arch linux early February, and configuring basic maintenance and security procedures, I am now ready to embark on connecting to somekind of vpn service. From what I've read so far my best bet is a third party vpn provider which gives me a secure and private connection to the Internet and easy to configure. I also went to the Arch linux wiki, specifically, Openvpn and Easy-RSA pages. Arch linux has a culture of "do-it-yourself" and "keep-it-simple-shit" (KISS, maybe I got that wrong). 

The latter course is the subject of my post (hopefully in the next post(s) I could bring good news too). Openvpn is based on machines authenticating themselves to servers which connect to the Internet securely. I have to build up my public key infrastructure PKI t…

Rkhunter Email Warning Notification With Attached Log File

Rkhunter scans my computer for rootkits and unathorized software behavior. It even scans open ports. Now its reports are limited to an email notification and a short warning. I have modified the config to include an attached log file of the pertinent warning notification.

MAIL_CMD=mail -s "rkhunter warnings found for ${HOST_NAME}" -a /var/log/rkhunter.log

The new email warning notification is more informative now.

tags: rkhunter,security,rootkit

Pacnew Files And User Password

I could not login and I could not sudo. My password is invalidated. Somehow I made a terrible error in editing /etc/password and most probably /etc/shadow and /etc/gshadow. This previous post explains this. I can't even run grpck to check the sanity of the config files.
I went ahead and reboot. Then pressed the Shift-key to get to the grub menu. Highlight the Advanced setttings for Grub, then pressed Cntrl-e. Find the line headed by the world linux then appended "init=/bin/bash". Pressed Cntrl-x to reboot. Then I get a bash shell prompt. Then because the kernel is mounted read-only I had to remount it read, write. so,
$ mount -n -o rw /
Then we can set our new passwords, without being prompted the old ones.
$ passwd [Enter] $ newpassword: ......
This sets the root passwords. Let's test that first. We reboot.
$ reboot -f
We fix the existing user's password in the root terminal. I like to login to my root account once in a while. This is a few of those cases.

Administrative Password Rejected After Pacman Upgrade And Pacnew Merges

I updated the system today.
[2017-04-01 07:22] [PACKAGEKIT] synchronizing package lists [2017-04-01 07:46] [PACMAN] Running 'pacman -Syu' [2017-04-01 07:46] [PACMAN] synchronizing package lists [2017-04-01 07:46] [PACMAN] starting full system upgrade [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] transaction started [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] warning: /etc/group installed as /etc/group.pacnew [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] warning: /etc/passwd installed as /etc/passwd.pacnew [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] warning: /etc/gshadow installed as /etc/gshadow.pacnew [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] warning: /etc/shadow installed as /etc/shadow.pacnew [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] upgraded filesystem (2016.12-2 -> 2017.03-2) [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] upgraded dbus (1.10.16-1 -> 1.10.16-2) [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] upgraded libutil-linux (2.29.2-1 -> 2.29.2-2) [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] upgraded util-linux (2.29.2-1 -> 2.29.2-2) [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM] upgraded xdg-desktop-portal-gtk (0.5-3 -> 0.6-1) [2017-04-01 07:46] [ALPM]…