SanDisk 256G Ultra Fit and Linux

📅 January 2, 2021
Are you looking for an itty-bitty USB 3 flash drive that is compatible with Linux and lost easily?

Does the SanDisk Ultra Fit work with Linux, and, if so, what is its performance like?

I had the chance to test this out, and here are my results.

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My Adventure with 10 Gigabit Ethernet and Linux

📅 January 13, 2021
“Will 10 gigabit Ethernet work with a desktop Linux distribution?”

Curious to find out how well 10 gigabit Ethernet will work with a desktop version of Linux, I embarked on an experiment to see what hardware is required, how well it connects, and how well it performs with Linux Mint 20.

My experiment was met with a resounding success, and everything proceeded better than I expected! In fact, it was easy. However, the world of 10 gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) contains differences not found in the 1 gigabit Ethernet (GbE) world. From hardware to software, there is learning required to make it all work. 10GBase-SR. SFP+. 10GSFP+Cu. Transceivers. DAC. Jumbo frames. These are terms you will not find on the side of a box in the electronics department of your local store. We are dealing with a different puzzle, so the pieces are different.

Here is my journey into this exciting world by setting up a very simple 10GbE network using Linux utilizing 10GBase-SR fiber optics and SFP+ DAC cable to hook systems together.

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Intel NUC, Linux, Pi-Hole, and NAS – Part 8: LibreNMS and SNMP

📅 January 2, 2021
With the NUC project up and running fine with FTP, SSH, Emby, and Pi-Hole, why not expand its capabilities by turning it into a network monitoring station (NMS) as well?

Have you heard of SNMP? It stands for Simple Network Management Protocol, and it is a handy way to monitor network devices. SNMP is one of those seemingly dry, stuffy network technologies everyday users will likely never encounter or know about, but once you have had the chance to see it in action for yourself, you will think, “Oh, wow! This is cool!” and wonder how you managed to live without it.

Whether you have experience using SNMP or not, it is a great learning experience that has real use and worth becoming familiar with.

This article will show how to install an NMS called LibreNMS on the NUC running Xubuntu 19.10 in order to monitor port traffic on a network switch using graphs in a web page that we can call up from anywhere on the local network. We can even monitor Pi-Hole statistics using SNMP!

Ready? Let’s have fun!

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mdadm: How to Remove a Drive From a RAID Array

📅 December 22, 2020
What? Why is this drive still insisting that it is a part of a RAID array?

If you use mdadm, you might have encountered a situation where, even though you entered the correct commands to fail a member drive and remove it from the array, another computer or the same computer still recognizes it as a part of the old array.

This is normal because mdadm member drives contain superblocks that contain RAID information. If a computer still sees a removed drive as part of a RAID array, it is usually because the superblock was not removed from the drive.

Here is how to do that.

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Ho, Ho, Ho with xsnow!

📅 December 15, 2020
With Christmas and snowy weather this time of year, why not add some gaudy festive decoration to your carefully crafted clean and minimal Linux desktop?

xsnow is a program that displays falling snow animations on top of your Linux desktop wallpaper complete with stars, wind gusts, accumulating snow, shooting stars, and Santa in his sleigh!

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Lexar 64G JumpDrive M45 and Linux

📅 December 7, 2020
“Aww…look at da wittle USB stick. It’s sooo cute!”

USB sticks have improved greatly in the past years. Now, they support USB 3.1 with triple-digit read/write speeds depending upon the model.

Needing a new USB stick, I tried the Lexar 64G JumpDrive for its small size, fast speeds, and metal construction. Is it compatible with Linux? What is its performance like?

Here are my results with this little storage-capacity wonder with Linux Mint 20.

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Add a Proxy with TinyProxy

📅 November 28, 2020
Suppose you have a group of devices in a private LAN that have no access to the Internet but you later discover that one needs to connect to the Internet for whatever reason.

How can we allow that one device to connect to the Internet without allowing the entire LAN to access the Internet?

We can use a proxy!

A multi-homed computer is one that connects to more than one network through multiple network ports. One network is the private LAN, and the other is the Internet. We can install a proxy (specifically a forward proxy) on the multi-homed system in order to allow something like a web browser located on the private LAN to access the Internet.

We can achieve the same result using other proxies, such as Polipo, but Polipo has been discontinued and is no longer available in the Ubuntu repository. In this article, we will look at a simple installation using TinyProxy in Linux Mint 20.

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Bash: Read Into an Array

📅 October 28, 2020
Suppose you want to populate a Bash array with a list of values or words. Is there a convenient way to do this without manually specifying each individual index for the array?

Yes, there is! Using read or mapfile, we can declare and populate a Bash array in one go.

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Bash: Show Notifications from Scripts Using notify-send

📅 October 25, 2020

Are you familiar with those notification popups that appear on the Linux desktop during certain events, such as a disconnected network or a completed download?

Well, did you know that you can cause these to appear with your own messages from a bash script? This can be useful when you want to be notified of an event, such as when a user logs into your system via SSH.

This article will show a few basics about how you can create your own notifications in Linux Mint 20.

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Upgrading the Linux Kernel with NVIDIA Drivers

📅 October 18, 2020

I enjoy testing out new Linux kernels as they are released, but this can mess up the graphics if using NVIDIA graphics cards. As a result, it is necessary to reinstall or upgrade the NVIDIA graphics cards too.

The advice given in this article is identical to a previous article describing how to upgrade to Linux kernel 5.8.0 with NVIDIA graphics, so not much has changed since then aside from the software versions.

Here is a revised step-by-step kernel upgrade tutorial (with pictures!) that I have found to be 100% successful with Linux Mint and NVIDIA 1050/1060 graphics cards.

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