October 2010

New Installation Check List

This list is what I check after a new Linux installation.  Some of these items are specific to my equipment.

Things to check after a new Linux installation:

  • Old installation is the default for boot loader and it still works
  • Windows installation still works
  • Budget in OpenOffice
  • Firefox with Delicious plug-in
  • Ctrl-Alt-Delete brings up log off dialog
  • Backup to Mothball
  • GnuCash
  • APC UPS Daemon (apcupsd and GUI)


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Tracking Passwords

I’ve recently started using a password manager. My old scheme wasn’t cutting it anymore. The requirements I had were:

  • Security (no trusting my passwords to the cloud)
  • Run on Linux, Windows and Android
  • Synchronize between different machines

What I settled on is a combination of KeePass and Dropbox. The former is an open source password manager that encrypts all information with AES or Twofish. The latter is like an NFS mounted directory. Using KeePass, I can store all my web site log in information. Dropbox frees me from having to copy the KeePass database around. I store the password database in a Dropbox folder and that folder is automatically synchronized on all my machines. I now have two passwords to remember, one for Dropbox and one for KeePass.

This is the list of software:

To try it out, first install Dropbox. To install Dropbox on Windows without administrator rights, click Cancel on the Run As dialog.

After the Dropbox folder is running, get KeePass v1 and create the database in the dropbox folder. To install KeePass on Windows without Administrator rights, use the portable version.

After you’ve created a record for a web site, try out the autotype feature. In KeePass portable, select a record. Press Ctrl-U to launch the URL. At the log-in screen, press Ctrl-Alt-A to have KeePass log you in. The default action is to type username, Tab, password, then Enter. If this won’t work for a particular site, it can be set up any way you’d like.


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Installing Fonts in Ubuntu 10.04

The last time I installed a font I was using Fedora. Of course, things change and the instructions need to get updated. Here’s how to install a TTF in Ubuntu 10.04.

As root:
# cd /usr/share/fonts/truetype
# mkdir my-new-font

Copy your TTF files to the my-new-font directory
# sudo fc-cache -f -v

Restart any running applications that need to use the new font.


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