Source control is an essential part of a smart techies life. While the bigger version control systems are mostly useful to developers (SVK rocks) some of the simpler ones can often be found in the sysadmins toolkit. A couple of companies I’ve worked for have been heavy users of RCS on their servers and while it’s made configuration safer (and easier to revert) its lack of a central repository is often an unaddressed weakness. Read on →

The add_to_delicious plugin was inspired by an article, called Putting RSS to Work: Immediate Action Feeds, which made the very sensible suggestion of allowing you to “do things” to RSS items without leaving your aggregator. This plugin changes each post (both RSS and HTML flavours) and adds a clickable link that takes you to a pre-populated “add link to” page. The add_to_delicious source code is pretty simple but you’ll probably need to change the ‘$post_url’ to suit your sites permalink format. Read on →

2005 was a very mixed year for me, it had some memorable high spots and a couple of tear jerking moments. The year started off with me moving all my sites, email and everything else I put online from a shared machine to my own bytemark box after the shared host I was using got cracked through someones broken web app install. Digging through my backups and verifying nothing had been tampered with was a fun way to spend my hols. Read on →

The day seemed to get worse by the hour, first the pub phoned to cancel my booked room, they’d let me have it for free but then someone offered them a 1000 pound for the night so they dropped my reservation, and then we had a double booked room at the venue and had to kick out the occupants. After these hickups two of the speakers arrived and things actually started to fit together. Read on →

It’s a little late in the day to change any of the details but I’ve had to move the venue from Morgan Stanley in Cabot Square to the New Cavendish Street campus of Westminster University (Streetmap). Some of you may recognise the venue, we hold a lot of GLLUGs there. The reason for the move is a great one, the demand for seats has far surpassed my expectations. The original venue had room for 100 people, 120 at a push. Read on →

I like sudo, it allows you to give people (and automated jobs) more privileges without having to hand out the root password. One of the more important aspects of its use is restricting the commands a user can run. After all, limiting peoples access to rootly powers doesn’t help much if they can just shell out to bash or edit the shadow file (or other important files) and locally escalate their privileges. Read on →

The OpenCON 2005 OpenBSD Slides are now available and linked to from When ever the OpenBSD people get together and present on security it’s worth ten minutes of the admins day to have a look for the new ideas, after all they’ll often appear ever where else over the next year. The highlights of this batch include an overview of how the congestion indicator works and allows you to log in even when getting DoSed, the changes to the ports and package tools (which are moving to Perl!) and the whole of Theos Exploit Mitigation Techniques slides. Read on →

I’ve been out of action for the last week and a bit due to illness, this may have something to do with all the windows where I live being removed and left out overnight by incompetent, unprepared builders. Nothing like trying to sleep through a minor gale. In WINTER. When it’s raining. And you have NO WINDOWS! On the plus side I know my email system’s working fine, I’ve got a big enough backlog to prove that. Read on →

Update: the venue has changed! Please see the London Frameworks Night Update page. I’m pleased to announce that on the 17th of November, starting at 19:00 and being held in Morgan Stanley at Cabot Square, is the first ever London Web Frameworks evening! We were incredibly lucky with the line up and we’re proud to present: Matt Trout - Catalyst Catalyst core developer and author of DBIx::Class. Simon Willison - Django Javascript guru, Sitepoint author, Pythonista and Yahoo! Read on →

Update: the venue has changed! Please see the London Frameworks Night Update page. I’m delighted to announce that the London Web Frameworks night will actually be happening! It’s due to happen on the 17th of November and starts at 19:00. Thanks to Ben Evans we’ve got a venue (Morgan Stanley at Cabot Square) and we’ve got three damn fine speakers. Presenting Django we’ve got Simon Willison. Showcasing Rails is Matt Biddulph and to cover Catalyst we’ve got Matt Trout, one of its developers. Read on →