CUPS protocol changed.

Since CUPS v1.6.0 the network protocol changed so that printer browsing is removed. This means that if you were used to connect to network printer with a Linux client, this doesn’t work anymore. You now have to manually connect printers. The server now publishes the printers using zeroconf, so you need a working avahi server running next to the cups server.

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Web server using nginx

There are two new articles added, one about how to setup a web server with nginx, and one that explains how to migrate from apache to nginx. I finally did take the time to study how to do things the “nginx” way after years of using apache for a web server. It was just a matter of learning how to run php and cgi scripts. The only thing left to do is the way the mercurial repository is served, but it works for this moment. Of course this server is now serving this site using nginx.

The site itself got some cosmetic changes. The static header is replaced with random photographs that I made around the place where I live. More will follow when I take more panorama type pictures that will to fit in the header without losing important parts. Amazing how few from 12000 pictures can be used for a header.


Making backups using Amanda.

I think that Amanda is one of the better backup solutions for small and large systems. The backups itself are written using standard *nix tools and can be used to restore even without amanda itself. The backups can be written to real tapes, disks simulating a tape changer, and into the cloud using Amazon S3 storage.

Because using amanda can be complicated and simple at the same time, I have split the whole story in three articles. The first is about the server part, which is also good for single machines. The second adds a *nix client, and the last article describes some practical commands such as maintenance and restore data.

You may expect an article about Amanda Recovery Manager, this is a backup solotion for your MySQL database and is a better alternatice then what I have written in the MySQL article.

VNC article and other things

Today I added an article about using VNC as remote graphical console to the headless home server. Original I used Thinstation booting from the PXE server, but that was a complicated and slow way to get the console. VNC is much easier and there are clients available for Linux, Windows and more.

In the meantime the server locked up a few times in the last days for no known reason. Read More …

Slow Home Server updates?

Not that I’m on holiday now, it’s just that I’m busy doing research about traffic shaping, better firewall protection, and improving internal network performance. Most of these results will end up in their own articles, but some parts that are already written will get some changes.

My main server is now using traffic shaping on the Internet side, but also between two of the virtual servers. That last one is necessary because the nightly backup otherwise would almost kill this web server. It seems to perform much better now during the night since the network traffic for the backup is classified as lowest priority.

For the external side, it looks that traffic to and from the Internet responds better, even while a torrent is handled at full up and download speed. In a few weeks everything will be tuned well enough to publish the results.

There is also a low memory version of the Home Server in the making, less features of course and no virtual servers inside, but it should do just enough to be useful.

Home Server – dropping tcp_wrappers support

Soon in Arch Linux tcp_wrappers support will be dropped. It wasn’t used much these days, it is always the best to try to limit access to network services using the internal configuration and protect the network traffic itself with iptables. The following Home Server articles are updated:

  • Home Server MySQL Database server
  • Home Server PXE Server
  • Home Server NFS4 Shares

For the time being, put ALL: ALL in /etc/hosts.allow.

Home Server article updates

Lately I have not written any new articles for the Home Server series but updated some of the existing ones to make the contents more accurate.

The Minidlna article is updated for the local web server configuration.

The Home Server Linux installation has some fixes about the RAID and SMART setup.

The Home Server IPv4 article has most updates about the setup of the bind name server, it now uses /srv/named instead of /var/named as a working directory. This is because the /var directory won’t be included in future backup scripts.

The MySQL article is updated with information to backup the databases.

The Postfix article has some cosmetic changes.

The download file is updated.

Arch Linux and deprecation of net-tools.

In June 2011 the Arch Development team decided that network setup should be done with other tools then net-tools because net-tools is now deprecated. Why the flexible configuration scripts should be gone because of that is something that I and a lot of Arch usersĀ  simply don’t know and understand. Init-scripts have nothing to do with the network tools, they simply should have been rewritten to use the iproute2 package.

The consequence of this is that complex network configurations like used in the Home ServerĀ  articles on this site, are almost impossible to do with the “new” style of configuring. Add to that that the wiki still describes the old method (but it displays a warning now), and that some things are still not straitened out for the current packages, I decided to keep on using the old style scripts or a while.

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Home Server reorganisation

They way that I originally organized the Home Server articles didn’t work because the menu would fall off the screen and you could not select all the articles anymore. To fix this I decided to insert another menu level in the tree. Unfortunately this has the effect almost all pages in the Home Server series now have a new url. I guess it takes a few days before all search engines catch up with these changes.

The menu system itself is changed too, I have now more control about what is displayed in the drop-down menus and the titles of the pages. This should make navigation a bit more friendly.