28 de fev de 2011

Tiny Core Linux and Operational Readiness

Tiny Core Linux and Operational Readiness: "

When installing, configuring, or managing VMware virtual infrastructure, one of the steps which should be performed before releasing a host (back) to production is to perform operational readiness tests. One test which is quite critical is that of testing virtual infrastructure networking. After all, what good is a running VM if it has no connectivity to the rest of the network? Each ESX or ESXi host pNIC should be individually tested for internal and upstream connectivity, VLAN tagging functionality if in use (quite often it is), in addition to proper failover and fail back, and jumbo frames at the guest level if used.

There are several types of VMs or appliances which can be used to generate basic network traffic for operational readiness testing. One that I’ve been using recently (introduced to me by a colleague) is Tiny Core Linux. To summarize:

Tiny Core Linux is a very small (10 MB) minimal Linux GUI Desktop. It is based on Linux 2.6 kernel, Busybox, Tiny X, and Fltk. The core runs entirely in ram and boots very quickly. Also offered is Micro Core a 6 MB image that is the console based engine of Tiny Core. CLI versions of Tiny Core’s program allows the same functionality of Tiny Core’s extensions only starting with a console based system.

TCL carries with it a few of benefits, some of which are tied to its small stature:

  • The minimalist approach makes deployment simple.

  • At just 10MB, it’s extremely portable and boots fast.

  • As a Linux OS, it’s freely distributable without the complexities of licensing or activation.

  • It’s compatible with VMware hardware 7 and the Flexible or E1000 vNIC making it a good network test candidate.

  • No installation is required. It runs straight from an .ISO file or can boot from a USB drive.

  • Point and click GUI interface provides ease of use and configuration for any user.

  • When deployed with internet connectivity, it has the ability to download and install useful applications from an online repository such as Filezilla or Firefox. There are tons of free applications in the repository.

As I mentioned before, deployment of TCL is pretty easy. Create a VM shell with the following properties:

  • Other Linux (32-bit)

  • 1 vCPU

  • 256MB RAM

  • Flexible or E1000 vNIC

  • Point the virtual CD/DVD ROM drive to the bootable .ISO

  • No HDD or SCSI storage controller required

First boot splash screen. Nothing real exciting here other than optional boot options which aren’t required for the purposes of this article. Press Enter to continue the boot process:

SnagIt Capture

After pressing Enter, the boot process is briefly displayed:

SnagIt Capture

Once booted, the first step would be to configure the network via the Panel applet at the bottom of the Mac like menu:

SnagIt Capture

If DHCP is enabled on the subnet, an address will be automatically acquired by this point. Otherwise, give eth0 a static TCP/IP configuration. Name Servers are optional and not required for basic network connectivity unless you would like to test name resolution in your virtual infrastructure:

SnagIt Capture

Once TCP/IP has been configured, a Terminal can be opened up and a basic ping test can be started. Change the IP address and vNIC portgroup to test different VLANs but my suggestion would be to spawn multiple TCL instances, one per each VLAN to test because you’ll need to vMotion the TCL VMs to each host being tested. You don’t want to continuously be modifying the TCP/IP configuration:

SnagIt Capture

What else of interest is in the Panel applet besides Network configuration? Some ubiquitous items such as date/time configuration, disk and terminal services tools, and wallpaper configuration:

SnagIt Capture

The online application repository is packed with what seems like thousands of apps:

SnagIt Capture

After installing FileZilla, it’s available as an applet:

SnagIt Capture

FileZilla is fully functional:

SnagIt Capture

So I’ve only been using Tiny Core Linux as a network testing appliance, but clearly it has some other uses when paired with extensible applications. A few other things that I’ll point out is:

  1. TCL can be Suspended in order to move it to other clusters (with compatible CPUs) so that both a host and a storage migration can be performed in a single step. Once TCL reaches its destination cluster, Unsuspend.

  2. During my tests, TCL will continue to run without issue after being severed from its boot .ISO. This is possible because it is booted into RAM where it continues to run from that point on.

I’ve been watching Tiny Core Linux for several months and the development efforts appear fairly aggressive and backed by an individual or group with a lot of talent and energy which is good to see. As of this writing, version 3.5 is available. Give Tiny Core Linux a try.

Post from: boche.net - VMware Virtualization Evangelist

Copyright (c) 2010 Jason Boche. The contents of this post may not be reproduced or republished on another web page or web site without prior written permission.

Tiny Core Linux and Operational Readiness

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18 de fev de 2011

Linux 101: Using chmod and chown

Linux 101: Using chmod and chown: "

When you use Linux long enough you are going to use the command line. Although nearly every command line trick can be done from a GUI front end now, there are times when the command line is the only route (headless server for example). When you have to go that route, you will be glad to have the fundamentals of the more important Linux commands under your belt. Two very important commands, chmod and chown, deal with permissions and ownership (respectively). With these tools you control who owns and who reads, writes, and executes files and folders on your Linux system. Let’s take a look at how to use these commands.


Not a bit. By default you will have both chmod and chown installed on your system.


The chmod command allows you to change permissions on a file. The basic usage is:


Where PERMISSIONS is either the numeric or the alpha equivalent of the permissions you want to assign and FILE is the file (or folder) you want to effect.

Since the numeric permissions are the easiest to understand (and use) let’s look at that method.

Remember, file permissions are in the form:

OWNER | GROUP | All Others

Each of those sections includes:


Each permission (read, write, execute) is represented with the binary representation of the initial letter:

  • r – 4
  • w – 2
  • x – 1

To get the numeric permission you add which permissions you want to use together. So if you want r+w you get 6. If you want r+w+x you get 7. If you want r+x you get 5. If you want only r you get 4. So now, remembering you have to cover permissions for three different users (Owner, Group, All Others), you will need to have a numeric number for each. So if you want Owner and Group to have rwx permission and All Others to only have r permissions, you would have:


Now, to change the permission of a particular file to 774 you would issue the command:

chmod 774 FILENAME

Where FILENAME is the name of the file.


Now let’s examine the changing of ownership. This will bite you when you install an application in a directory as one user and need to use it as another. So let’s say you have a folder in the /opt directory called APP that belongs to user bethany but user jacob needs to own it instead (of course if they both need access you could just change permissions or create a group for this). To change the ownership of this folder (you will need administrative rights to do this) you would issue a command like:

sudo chown jacob.jacob /opt/APP

The above command would change both ownership and group ownership of the folder (since jacob.jacob was used). If you wanted to leave that folder belonging to the original group issue the command like:

sudo chown jacob /opt/APP

and the original group ownership would remain intact.

Final thoughts

Permissions and ownership on Linux isn’t nearly as challenging as you though – even from the command line! Of course you can do these same tasks from within your file manage – if you have a file manager!

© Jack Wallen for gHacks Technology News, 2011. | Permalink | Add to del.icio.us, digg, facebook, reddit, twitter
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The Bug Genie – User-Friendly & Open Source Issue Tracking With Project Management

The Bug Genie – User-Friendly & Open Source Issue Tracking With Project Management: "

The Bug Genie is an open source issue/bug tracking application (built with PHP/MySQL) with project management capabilities.

It was previously shared at WRD in 9 Free And Open Source Bug Tracking Softwares article but improved so much since then and seems like this is a good chance to remind it.

The application now has a very slick, Ajaxed interface where any number of projects>milestones>issues can be created + assigned to users.

The Bug Genie

Besides the team members, end users can report issues as well which is a very good way of improving an application (access control features lets you define who can see what parts of the project).

A complete project hierarchy is supported including editions, releases and components.

There is an integrated wiki where you can use to create a detailed-documentation on an issue or a how-to for end users.

The Bug Genie supports and integrates with several different version control systems including Subversion, Git (Gitorious and github) and Mercurial.

The application will automatically create updated file lists, issue commit comments, links to diffs and previous revisions and more from your commits.

It is also very flexible with customizable workflows, ability to extend easily with modules, multilanguage support and more.

Special Downloads:

Ajaxed Add-To-Basket Scenarios With jQuery And PHP

Free Admin Template For Web Applications

jQuery Dynamic Drag’n Drop



Professional XHTML Admin Template ($15 Discount With The Code: WRD.)

Psd to Xhtml

SSLmatic – Cheap SSL Certificates (from $19.99/year)


11 de fev de 2011

Argente Utilities, Free System Maintenance Tool

Argente Utilities, Free System Maintenance Tool: "

Argente Utilities is a free system maintenance tool for the Windows operating system that offers access to several maintenance, optimization and security related applications.

The software displays a welcome screen on first run where the user can enable or disable scheduled automatic system maintenances and automatic updates.

argente utilities

Argente Utilities contains a one-click maintenance mode which basically runs several of the tools included in the application without user interaction. A summary of all discovered errors and problems is available for analysis, impatient users can click on the Repair all problems button right away to resolve all issues directly (not recommended).

The application creates backups of the Registry automatically. It furthermore creates backups whenever a module is run or a setting changed so that it is always possible to restore the system.

The following modules are included in the application:

  • Registry Cleaner – Scans the Windows Registry for errors, excess entries and other problems and offers to correct them.
  • Disk Cleaner – Scans the hard drive for temporary files and invalid shortcuts.
  • Privacy Cleaner, Scans for privacy related data and information, for instance recent documents, browser history, caches and application specific information.

privacy cleaner settings

  • Uninstall Manager – Like Revo Uninstaller. Runs the built-in application uninstaller first and offers to scan the system for leftovers in the second step. A right-click on an entry can be used to search for the application online.
  • Startup Manager – Lists all programs that are started during system startup. Entries can be removed with a click. Additional options available to edit the listing, add new programs, open the containing folder or run an application.
  • Process Manager – Displays the running processes, options to kill processes and to open the containing folder.
  • System Optimizer – Can change several system settings at once. It will disable services that are not needed for instance and apply other tweaks to the system. The user has to configure the options on first run to avoid that services get disabled that are needed.

uninstall software

  • Spyware Cleaner – scans the system for spyware in cookies, files, folders and Registry.
  • Spyware Immunize – Immunizes the system from many potential spyware threats.
  • System Manager – Was not available at the time of testing.
  • System Repair – Repair several common Windows errors

system maintenance

Argente Utilities offers several interesting features and modules to maintain, repair, secure and optimize the Windows operating system. The software is provided as a portable and setup version. It is compatible with all 32-bit and 64-bit versions and editions of the operating system from Windows 2000 to Windows 7.

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How to Repair Your Internet Connection

How to Repair Your Internet Connection: "

arrow Windows Windows only arrow
internet repair.pngThere are an infinite number of reasons as to why someone’s Internet connection could stop working, but even with that in mind there are still a number of things we techies are “trained” to check first before banging our heads against the wall. I’m talking about things like releasing/renewing the IP address, flushing the DNS, and checking the Windows Firewall settings.

Thanks to a program called Complete Internet Repair all of those “tier 1″ troubleshooting efforts can be taken care of automatically for you. This free portable app tries to repair all of the most troublesome Internet-related issues including Windows Update problems and the mind-numbing lack of network connectivity.

Here’s a list of situations that the developers have said their program fares well in:

  • Internet or network problem after removing adware, spyware, virus, worm, Trojan horse, etc.

  • Loss network connection after installing/uninstalling adware, spyware, antispam, vpn, firewall or other networking programs.

  • Unable to access any webpage or can only access some webpages.

  • Pop-up error window with network related problem description.

  • No network connectivity due to registry errors.

  • DNS lookup problem.

  • Fail to renew the network adapter’s IP address or other DHCP errors.

  • Network connectivity issue with limited or no connections message.

  • Windows update does not work

  • You are having problems connecting to secured websites (ex. Banking).

  • Internet Explorer stopped working or crashes all the time.

  • Other networking problems.

This obviously won’t fix every possible problem you’re likely to encounter, but it’s a great first step… especially if you’re trying to walk someone through how to do this stuff over the phone.

Note: I noticed that clicking the arrow along the right side of each entry immediately executes the particular step, so don’t try and click the arrows when just experimenting. :)

Complete Internet Repair Homepage (Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008/7; Freeware)

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How to Repair Your Internet Connection

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Confirmada a união Nokia e Microsoft

Confirmada a união Nokia e Microsoft: "Conforme já o tínhamos anunciado, fruto de rumores cada vez mais fundamentados, a Nokia firmou uma parceria com a Microsoft para a disponibilização do novo sistema operativo Windows Phone 7 para os telefones da companhia Finlandesa. O anúncio foi feito hoje pelos CEO’s das duas companhias numa conferência de imprensa que teve lugar em Londres. A parceria [...]

10 de fev de 2011

Windows 7 SP1, Server 2008 R2 SP1 available February 22

Windows 7 SP1, Server 2008 R2 SP1 available February 22: "

The Windows Team blog has finally given us a concrete release date for Windows 7 SP1. On February 22, the service pack will be available to the general public for download via Windows Update or directly from the Microsoft website. The client (Windows 7) update is being released in tandem with its server counterpart, so administrators will be able to grab Server 2008 R2 SP1 on the 22nd as well.

If you jumped the gun and installed a pre-release version of Windows 7 SP1, you may need to remove it and reinstall the RTM -- so get your download manager ready.

Windows 7 SP1, Server 2008 R2 SP1 available February 22 originally appeared on Download Squad on Wed, 09 Feb 2011 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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9 de fev de 2011

The Beginner’s Guide to Nano, the Linux Command-Line Text Editor

The Beginner’s Guide to Nano, the Linux Command-Line Text Editor: "


New to the Linux command-line? Confused by all of the other advanced text editors? How-To Geek’s got your back with this tutorial to Nano, a simple text-editor that’s very newbie-friendly.

When getting used to the command-line, Linux novices are often put off by other, more advanced text editors such as vim and emacs. While they are excellent programs, they do have a bit of a learning curve. Enter Nano, an easy-to-use text editor that proves itself versatile and simple. Nano is installed by default in Ubuntu and many other Linux distros and works well in conjunction with sudo, which is why we love it so much


4 de fev de 2011

Last blocks of IPv4 addresses allocated, exhaustion now imminent

Last blocks of IPv4 addresses allocated, exhaustion now imminent: "This is just a quick note to say that, in a ceremonial event in Miami, the last five blocks of IPv4 addresses have now been handed out by IANA, a part of ICANN. Each of the five regional registries -- North America, South America, Europe, Africa and Asia -- now have only a few million IP addresses to allocate.

IP address exhaustion will hit Asia first. With 24 million IP addresses used by APNIC in January 2011, and only around 50 million addresses left in its pool, exhaustion is expected to occur in the next few months. Europe will be next, probably towards the end of 2011, and North America will follow sometime in 2012.

Are you prepared for the IPocalypse?!

Last blocks of IPv4 addresses allocated, exhaustion now imminent originally appeared on Download Squad on Fri, 04 Feb 2011 07:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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3 de fev de 2011

Windows 8 Direct Experience Mode

Windows 8 Direct Experience Mode: "

We do not know an awful lot about Microsoft’s upcoming operating system Windows 8. Heck, we do not even know if it will be named Windows 8. Microsoft is tight lipped and does not reveal planned features at this point in time, probably to avoid jeopardizing the sales of their current operating system Windows 7.

The official information we have are mostly from job postings and patent applications. Back in August I ran a story on the Direct Experience Mode which could become a part of Windows 8 which was mentioned in a patent application. It basically mentioned an option to load different versions of the operating system automatically or manually. An example is a video DVD inserted by the user before boot which would load a faster loading video player instead of the full operating system.

A new patent application was filed in January 2011 which looks like a detailed version of the previous application.

fast booting a computing device

The operating system is not loaded directly anymore. Instead, a virtual machine manager is started which can load one of the available partitions. Partitions in this case means either a general purpose operating system or a specialized version. It should not be confused with hard drive partitions.

The figure above shows one general purpose operating system and four specialized systems for DVD, TV, Music and Other purposes. It is likely that other is just a placeholder for multiple applications. It could for instance be interesting to load a web browser directly which could target Google’s Chrome OS.

While it is currently not known if the technology behind the patent will find its way into the Windows 8 operating system, it is likely that it will in form of the Direct Experience Mode.

According to the patent, it is possible to load a second operating system to switch between systems whenever the need arises. Windows 8 could start up with a web browser or email client and load the general purpose operating system in full in the background.

Several questions remain unanswered at this point in time:

  • Will the technology be integrated into Windows 8? If so, will it be available in all editions or only specific editions.
  • Are partitions beneficial for a PC’s power consumption and performance?
  • Will it be possible to create custom partitions?

What’s your take on the Direct Experience Mode?

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