Knitebane Manor Illos libenter devoramus qui nos opprimere velint


It’s official

Posted by Knitebane

I'm off of Facebook. You can find me on MeWe

I left the twits at Twitter some time ago.

Now I'm on Gab


Perhaps the end of the beginning

Posted by Knitebane

I have made it known in a few circles that come the new year that I'll will finally kick the Facebook bucket. Some have asked, "Why?"

So here's why:

Former Facebook Workers: We Routinely Suppressed Conservative News

Facebook recommended that this psychiatrist’s patients friend each other

Leaked Emails Show Facebook Exec Shared Research With Clinton Campaign

Facebook’s ad metric problem is becoming Zuckerberg’s headache

This guy does a pretty good job of explaining why as well. Lots of good data:

Get your loved ones off Facebook.

But what it basically comes down to is that Facebook is a a fully realized Social Justice Warrior enclave. They use my eyeballs to fund their socialist march to the utopian mass graves and I'm not going to be a part of it any more.

You can find me on MeWe. I'm now #Not4Sale


Winning, part the first.

Posted by Knitebane

UPDATE: And this too: US Steel wants to accelerate investments, bring back jobs, CEO says

So by now we've all heard about the deal Trump cut with Carrier to keep jobs here.

Then we heard about Ford saying they'd keep jobs here.

Now comes this:
For over a year, New York-based Trans-Lux -- which makes LCD and LED displays -- has contemplated relocating its Chinese facilities to the U.S. Now with Trump's win, Allain said the company is accelerating its move back to the U.S., with the goal to make all of its products in America within a year.


Foxconn, the world's largest contract electronics manufacturer and a major Apple Inc (AAPL.O) supplier, said on Wednesday that it was in preliminary discussions to expand its operations in the United States.

Oh, and this:

This is potentially “a whole shift in the paradigm,” says Peter Kearl, co-founder and CTO of Qmast, a Colorado-based company pioneering the use of the microwave tech.

Microwave extraction could goose those numbers even higher. After all, there are more than 4 trillion (with a “t”) barrels of oil in the Green River Formation.


H/T Sundance at The Conservative Treehouse


Well that sucked.

Posted by Knitebane

Some time ago we moved the server that runs this blog off onto a cloud service. Eliminating the occasional outages caused by power and network issues made it well worth the cost to move to a paid service. In fact, as we could switch from a DSL circuit with fixed IP addresses to a cable Internet service we actually managed to both decrease the cost and increase our downward bandwidth.

The move was fortunate as we got caught up in the mess of Hurricane Matthew.

While this:


... is a ways up the road from us, we got our share of flooding.


... is just down the street from the Manor proper.

The power went out around 2pm on Saturday and didn't return until about 8pm Sunday. The cable Internet didn't come back until about 2pm today.

Staying put seemed like the order of the day. Three people who decided to venture out won't be going home again.

A functioning generator, a good supply of LED lights and batteries and some good books substituted for web browsing and Netflix.

Oh by the way. Did you know that a Keurig 2.0 won't run properly on a generator? I didn't before.

Fortunately I had this in reserve: A propane-powered coffee pot.


Testing, testing.

Posted by Knitebane

If you can read this then the blog has been moved to a new server.

No more outages due to power issues, I hope.

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Underway on nuclear power!

Posted by Knitebane

Well, not quite.

But we're up and running on our new circuit. I had hoped to postpone this transition for another week or so but Friday night at around 10pm Eastern Daylight Time our existing circuit went down and stayed down. We had already provisioned the new circuit and had it up and running that morning but the transition would require all the systems here to have new IP addresses assigned. The outage motivated me to go ahead and do it.

We had a bit of a bobble this morning with routing but that's all cleared up now and we're on a faster circuit with a more reliable provider. The random outages that plagued us throughout November and early this month should be a thing of the past.

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…and we’re back.

Posted by Knitebane

I came in last week to a UPS indicating that it had zero runtime. Everything was up including a test server that wasn't connected to the UPS so it wasn't a power hit.  I hit the test switch which *should* have beeped, gone from line power to battery power and then back again but instead rebooted everything attached to the device!

Not good.  After a few minutes the UPS started indicating that it had a charge again but I was past trusting it.  So I ordered a new UPS and hoped that power wouldn't flicker until it got here.

So tonight I downed everything and moved all of to the new UPS.  It's a smarter UPS and I can do more monitoring of via its USB monitoring connection than the old UPS bu that required running some USB cable and removing the old serial cables.  I took the opportunity to do a bit of housekeeping by pulling some dead systems and unused wiring out of the rack and after a couple of little bumps we're back in business.

I'll probably order new batteries for the old UPS and replace them.  It's quite likely that it's just a bad battery but I'd rather have a new, reliable system with the old one as a spare than wonder if every time the power flickers everything is going to reboot.

With all the systems I've virtualized I'm down to just a couple of physical systems so using a KVM system now makes more sense than a serial console server so that box got retired.  I've got a few more infrastructure changes coming up like trunking VLANs across both the external and internal switches and de-cabling the desktops in the office in favor of 802.11n wireless cards but I have some hardware purchases to make before that happens.

So far I'm enjoying the freedom that the virtual machines gives me.  I can spin up a test system in minutes rather than build a hardware-based box and making it a live production system is a matter of a software configuration change rather than a re-cabling and re-racking job.   This has made the migration away from Google services much easier once I got past having to build a new VM server to handle the additional load.

It's almost there.  The new mail/calendar/chat/cloud server is up and running and sometime in the next week or so I'll migrate all of the mail from the old system to the new.  That's the hardest and most tedious part but once it's done I'll not need to touch it again for a few years.   The hardest part is remembering how to use the tools to migrate the email without losing anything. The old email server has been running since 2009.  You kind of forget what you did the last time when it's three years.



So here we are again on the last Friday in July.

Posted by Knitebane

Does everyone remember what that means?

Are you sure?



Nice data you got there.  Be a shame if anything happened to it.


We don't mind working behind the scenes, keeping the network up and the servers running.  We do it because we love the work.  Sometimes we do it without even getting paid.

But on this one day of the year  it would be nice to tell your sysadmin you appreciate what he does for you.

Would that be so hard?





I believe that if anything is worth doing, it would have been done already.

Posted by Knitebane

UPDATE:   Sitemeter sucks.  It's down regularly.  They don't answer support emails. I even tried to upgrade to their paid service and got no response.  Who doesn't answer email that wants to give them money?  Screw 'em. I've switched to StatCounter.  Reports are that they are quite reliable and as a bonus they have a WordPress plugin.


Posting has been spotty as I have changed jobs and am still trying to get my schedule to match the job schedule.

When I'm not working I'm also trying to find replacements for the Google services that I'm using.  I've already pulled Google Analytics from this site and replaced it with SiteMeter. Ads are probably next.

The biggest time sink is in building out a new mail and calendar server to give us here at the Manor a way to communicate and share data that doesn't let the hoplophobes at Google be part of the process.  I have a mail server in place now but it's old and cranky and the web front end sucks.  Building out a new system with good spam control and using the Horde IMP web front end is the current project.  As of about 2AM today I've got a functioning mail server prototype and now I have to build it out on the live network and migrate all of our existing mail.  A shared calendar system is also in the works.

I've already dumped Google Drive (the old Google Docs) and Google Reader for Box and NewsBlur respectively. Both of the new services are actually more useful than the Google services they replaced.

We're pretty deeply invested into Android so getting clear of that may be problematic. My push will be to eliminate as much Google as practical without disrupting normal work.  The other problem of course is to ensure that what we use to replace Google isn't as bad or worse.  That pretty much eliminates Microsoft and Apple. The demise of HP/Palm and the implosion of RIM means our smartphone options are kind of limited.  For our smartphones and tablets the best I can do is to move to the open source versions of Android like Cyanogenmod.    I"m already running Cyanogenmod7 on my phone and Cyanogenmod9 on my HP TouchPad so that just leaves the Android devices of Mrs. Knitebane.  The Logitech Revue/GoogleTV box may not be able to be modded.

The other difficult-to-replace service will be Google Voice.  I'm pretty well committed to having a single phone number that forwards to home, work and cell.

I've dumped most of Google+ and replaced it with nothing.  I'm still researching a replacement for the most useful part of Google+, the ability to take a picture with my Android phone and have it automatically upload somewhere.  Ideally it would upload to a server here in-house but I can live with a remote site.

Posting will continue to be light as I incorporate my new job and the Great Google Abandonment into my available waking hours.




We’ll do it live! Part 4

Posted by Knitebane

Point upgrade to WordPress 3.4.1 completed.

As usual, drop me a line if you notice any issues.