I've been using Syncthing to mirror files in Linux, Windows, MacOS and OpenBSD, and it's working

Now that I’m running a new Debian 10 Buster laptop and use Dropbox to sync 160 GB of personal files, I have turned to the open-source, Go-coded Syncthing to keep about 500 MB of work-related files mirrored across that Linux laptop, a Windows 7 desktop and a 2011-era iMac desktop. It’s all pretty much seamless. I have the Syncthing client running on each PC, and I can monitor the “state” of the sync via a web GUI.

Printing in Debian 10: CUPS isn't in the default desktop if you forget to check the box during installation

I haven’t had the occasion to print anything in Debian 10 Buster in the couple of weeks that I have been running it, but today is the day. I knew from the release notes that Debian 10 included “driverless” printing, but I couldn’t find any printers in GNOME Setings, even though I have a wireless printer on my local network. The reason? I didn’t have CUPS. I had forgotten to check the “print server” box during my installation.

Debian 10 Buster with GNOME 3: I didn't expect it to be this fast, but that could be the SSD talking

I don’t know how much of it is Debian 10 and how much is swapping a 5400-RPM hard drive with an M.2 NVMe SSD, but my 2-year-old laptop is FLYING now that I’ve ditched Windows 10 and the 1 GB magnetic drive that came with it. And this is with GNOME 3. The stock or lightly/heavily-favored desktop environment in Debian, Fedora and Ubuntu looks great, runs with no hesitation (in constrast to Windows 10) and doesn’t have me thinking that I need anything else for speed-related reasons.

WordPress and Disqus in 2019

WordPress is a vital resource that hasn’t taken undue advantage of its users like other free, hosted services have done. But right now, it’s not for me. The one thing I miss about blogging with a static-site generator is the lack of native comments. It’s the one thing self-hosted WordPress (aka WordPress.org) gets right. It’s probably because WP was “doing” comments before Twitter and Facebook came along. Back then, social was comments.

Google Cloud nuked the web server on my VM

I wasn’t paying for my Google Cloud VM, and it turns out the price was right. Since I started working on my own server in the coat closet, I haven’t been using my free Google VM. I got an email today saying that it’s been 120 days since I’ve opened Google Cloud Shell. If I didn’t log in, “in 7 days, your Cloud Shell home directory will be automatically scheduled for deletion.

I'm using the Pixyll theme in Hugo

The hardest part about starting a new Hugo site isn’t getting the Hugo program to run. In Windows that part’s easy. All you do is download a binary, unzip and run it. I have been a new user of Hugo at least three times in the past few years. I’ve never stuck with it. Every time, the initial pain point is finding a theme that a) works, b) has the features I want and c) I can understand and modify where needed.

First post in Hugo for 2019

It’s been a long time since I messed around with Hugo. Now I’m thinking it’s time for me to make a real blog with this static-site generator. Here it is.

Permissions are hard

Figuring out file and directory permissions on a server is hard. You have to balance security with functionality. What are the most restrictive permissions you can set and still have everything work?

Shared hosting does take care of a lot for you

As I build my own server — and this would be the same for a cloud VPS or a local computer, there is a lot to set up and configure. Shared hosts like NearlyFreeSpeech.net (which I will be using more soon) and Hostgator (which I’ve used for years and will probably be using less) take care of many things in a safe and secure way. Setting up your own server is very much like reinventing the wheel.

Setting up FTP on my Raspberry Pi

Running your own servers — be they VPSes on Google, AWS or Digital Ocean, or Raspberry Pis in the closet — is a learning experience. You have to put on your sysadmin hat and get to work. Today I’m trying to figure out the ftp server. I’ve used a hundred of them but never installed and configured one. The hardest part to figure out is the SSL encryption. If you see this file, it means I’ve made some progress.