Upgrading the Linux Kernel with NVIDIA Drivers

๐Ÿ“… 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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Python: Generate a Ridiculously Complex Password

๐Ÿ“… September 7, 2020
What? You say you are running out of password ideas? Let’s fix that!

Here is a Python 3 script that generates a (supposedly) very secure password certain to thwart brute-force password cracking attempts. In fact, it is so complex that the primary challenge is remembering it.

But no worries! The script will save it to a text file where it can be easily copied and pasted into a password box…assuming it is not used for initial Linux GUI logins where copy and paste would not work.

Ready to explore some interesting Python 3 scrambling?

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Linux Mint 20, Kernel 5.8.0, and NVIDIA Driver 450.57

๐Ÿ“… August 3, 2020
Linux kernel 5.8.0 was released a little while ago, and, like every inquisitive Linux user who needs to run the latest and greatest kernel just because it has a new version number, I installed it in Linux Mint 20 Cinnamon to see how it would perform.

The result? It’s great! Well, it works just as good as any other kernel I have tried. However, I did run into issues with the latest NVIDIA driver 450.57 because, well, that has a new version number too!

Installing kernel 5.8.0 was easy. Getting the NVIDIA driver to play with it was tricky, but I managed to get it working eventually. Here are a few notes from my experience.

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Python: Passphrase Hashing for Increased Security

๐Ÿ“… July 21, 2020
Concerned that your generated passphrase cool.bait.build might be guessed by brute force password cracking means?ย  Then, hash it!

Passphrases based upon parts of speech (rabbits.burn.oily.paper) are easier to remember than something like %5gN&31+=?, but this might cause concern for those alarmed by password crackers attempting to try every word combination word in the dictionary.

Well, here is an added approach for you!

Just hash the passphrase using your favorite hash algorithm, and then use the hash as the passphrase. This way, you do not need to memorize the hash, only the passphrase that generates it.

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Python: Create Passphrases Based on Parts of Speech

๐Ÿ“… July 15, 2020
What? You can’t remember e7$t=ehQr8+ as your password?

The repeated password advice given over the years tends to encourage lazy password choices that end up being tricky for people to remember but easy for computers to crack.

As an example, the password above might be considered secure, but it is not convenient. As a result, people will shy away from it and pick something, like Pa$$w0rd123, that they think is secure.

Techniques such as Diceware attempt to resolve this situation and do a good job of creating passphrases, but the result might be a random selection of words that make little sense and be tricky to remember.

What if we tried creating passphrases that resemble English sentences by assembling words based upon parts of speech?

Here is a Python script that attempts to make resulting passphrases easier to remember by combining nouns, verbs, and adjectives in a more memorable way. We even use a pattern system to give us flexibility in the formation of phrases.

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Python: Generate Random Sequence from Weighted Values

๐Ÿ“… July 14, 2020
It’s a battle between two factions. The enemy attacks! Whew! That was close! You barely survived the onslaught of enemy attacks against your fortress in the post-apocalyptic fantasy world of What-Cha-Ma-Call-It. You are mankind’s last hope. Will you survive another round?

After replenishing your supplies, the enemy attacks again! However, it uses the same attack pattern, making this a predictable battle. You win, but it was rather lackluster.

The enemy attacks a third time using the same strategy. Yawn. This is getting boring. You barely needed to think in order to survive. Is there any way to make the enemy choose more random events to seem more intelligent and unpredictable?

Python 3 provides a handy function, called choices(), that selects items from a list at random based upon weighted values. We can use this function to write a Python script for our game to increases the enemy strategy and fun.

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Linux Mint 20

๐Ÿ“… July 13, 2020
Linux Mint 20 was released a few weeks ago, and, after installing and exploring its features, I can say that version 20 is another fine release in the series and one of the best Linux distributions available for everyday usage.

Here are a few of my thoughts.

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EVGA RTX 2080 Super XC Ultra Review

๐Ÿ“… June 27, 2020
The 2080 line of graphics cards has been available for a while, so there has been time to see what these cards are capable of.

Recently, I had the opportunity to try the EVGA RTX 2080 Super graphics card for myself in Linux and Windows systems. The result was impressive (in Windows) and not so impressive (in Linux) at the same time.

How can this be? Here are my thoughts.

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Programming the Logitech G513 RGB Keyboard Lights in Linux with g810-led

๐Ÿ“… May 21, 2020
The Logitech G513 RGB Mechanical keyboard has earned its place as the best keyboard I have ever used.

The keys have the best tactile approach, the build quality is superb with the metal top, the wrist rest is durable and soft, the size is convenient, the LEDs are confined to the key letters only (no light bleeding), and it just works with Linux.

But did you know that you can program each LED key individually with Bash to Python to create your own effects?

Do you want two random colors to be spread across the keys upon boot? Would you like a Pac-Man effect that pretends a yellow Pac-Man moves around the keys like a maze? Do you have different lighting patterns that you would like to assign to each user on the same Linux system?

All of this and more is possible with a free Linux program called g810-led that you can use with scripts.

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Python 3: Process Command Line Arguments with argparse

๐Ÿ“… May 13, 2020
Python 3 provides a handy module, argparse, that makes it easy to get and parse command line arguments passed to your script.

If you ever found argument parsing to be a tedious extra, then argparse might be just what you were looking for to simplify the process and focus on your code.

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