Archive for the “Uncategorized” Category

Setting ‘User Cannot Change Password’ using Python

Adding users manually to Active Directory can be a chore, especially if you have a lot of users to add and/or you need to remember to set several options. Fortunately AD is readily scriptable. I generally use Python for this purpose, and there are numerous examples for how to do things like add a new […]


This is the new computer case I received in the post today: Alongside the box it came in: And the box that came in:

ZFS: One or more devices has experienced an unrecoverable error

I’m using ZFS (via ZFS-FUSE), and at one point a zpool status gave me this rather scary report: zpool status pool: srv state: ONLINE status: One or more devices has experienced an unrecoverable error. An attempt was made to correct the error. Applications are unaffected. action: Determine if the device needs to be replaced, and […]

A Visual Git Reference

This page gives a good visual overview of numerous Git operations. If you understand Git in principle, but are unsure about the exact meaning of certain commands, then this may be useful; for each operation covered it gives a description and a block diagram of how it changes the state of the repository. If you’re […]


This graphical Python shell appears to be an excellent tool for interactive Python use, possibly supplanting IPython. From the announcement: * Has whatever you would expect from a graphical Python shell – attribute completion, tooltips which show how to call functions, highlighting of matching parentheses, etc. * Fixes a lot of IDLE nuisances – in […]

Automating Debian security updates

Thanks to ‘foom’ on LWN, comes a neat recipe for automatically installing critical updates on a Debian system with minimal risk: It’s explained in some detail, but in brief it uses (optionally) a separate sources.list into which you can put only critical sources, and makes dpkg/apt choose the default responses to any questions. Fortunately […]


How did I not know about this? “Mintty is a terminal emulator for Cygwin. It is based on code from PuTTY 0.60 by Simon Tatham and team.” Previously I’ve been using PuTTYcyg which is a version of PuTTY with Cygwin support added. It’s good, but mintty seems a lot neater – rather than being a […]

Apple Sues HTC for Patent Infringement

As reported by just about everybody, those litigious bastards are at it again. The BBC has a reasonable summary, but Gizmodo seems to have the best coverage so far, including the list of (20!) patents, the full filings, some links to Apple’s related issues with Nokia1 and Palm, and a brief response from HTC. It […]

Connecting a screen session to ssh-agent

GNU screen is an excellent way of keeping a persistent multi-terminal session for console based programs. It shines when connecting to a remote server – ssh in, run screen to create a session, then do whatever you want in it. At any point you can detach from the session and it will keep running in […]

Using physical disks with VMWare server

For some reason (product differentiation? simple oversight?) VMWare Server 21 has no option to create a VM using a physical disk. Fortunately, that doesn’t mean that it can’t use them; you just need to import a predefined VM and tell it to use that. It’s possible to create a VM in the right format using […]