Add another to the list

I can finally, after being long overdue, add the UK, and more specifically: Scotland to my list of countries visited.

Last month, Kirsteen and I travelled to Glasgow on a family and friends visiting trip.

I absolutely loved it. Though we did find the hotel lacking. Not worth what they charge. Though the breakfast at the Park Inn ( previously: Langs ) was very nice indeed.

I look forward to going back to Glasgow soon.

bacula: Fatal error: Failed to authenticate Storage daemon

When you see the backup of a (non localhost) client failing with the message:

Fatal error: Failed to authenticate Storage daemon

Keep in mind that bacula uses tcpwrappers, though probably not in the way you expect it.

instead of doing:

bacula-sd : 111.222.333.444

do:

$name-sd : 111.222.333.444

where $name is the name you specified in the bacula-sd.conf

Most services that use tcpwrappers (tcpd) use the name of the service (bacula-sd in this case), but bacula has a cute approach to it that listens only to the name you defined for the service. As far as I can tell this applies only to bacula-sd, and not bacula-dir or bacula-fd.

So, say you would have the following config in bacula-sd.conf:

Storage {                             # definition of myself
  Name = foo.bar-sd
  SDPort = 9103                  # Director's port
  WorkingDirectory = "/var/lib/bacula"
  Pid Directory = "/var/run/bacula"
  Maximum Concurrent Jobs = 20
}

then your /etc/hosts.allow would read:

foo.bar-sd : 111.222.333.444

Please note that you will still need to take care of your passwords on both ends, any mismatches there will results in no backups being made. Be sure to test your backups regularly.

do companies ‘sell out’ their customers?

Normally I don’t answer ‘blocked’ phone numbers on my cellphone, but since I’m expecting a call from a company I got tempted today. It was (off course) some call center, who immediately asked:

“I’m sorry to bother you, but do you by any chance have children under the age of 12?”

my (logical) answer was:

“I fail to see how that is any of your business”

Now, comes the interesting part about the whole affair: my cellphone number is not listed anywhere. That’s right, nowhere. Sure, I’ve given it to some companies who I do business with, and off course all my friends and relatives.  So, how exactly did some random call center get it’s hands on my number? Obviously, the only way they could have gotten it is because one of the mentioned companies has sold out on it’s customers, and there you have it. Could be the telco, could be another company. I doubt we’ll ever find out exactly who.

On the plus side,  here in The Netherlands we have something called (translated) “don’t call me“. It’s an online database, and numbers registered in it can not be called by marketers. ( That is law, by the way ).  It has worked fabulously for my home phone number , which has been listed there since day one. I just forgot to list my cell in there too,  since I’ve never been called by marketers on that one. It’s listed now.

I do feel there should be a law prohibiting companies selling any of their customer information to a third party. Privacy and such. Specially when it comes to e-mail addresses and phone numbers.

Spamassassin 2010 bug

Someone on IRC pointed me to this wonderful bug in Spamassassin, it’s easy to quickfix, but the fix itself will become a bug in 10 years, in any case, until they push an update that correctly fixes this:

##{ FH_DATE_PAST_20XX
header   FH_DATE_PAST_20XX      Date =~ /20[1-9][0-9]/ [if-unset: 2006]
describe FH_DATE_PAST_20XX      The date is grossly in the future.

( meaning emails sent in 2010  will also trigger the scoring )

should be changed into:

##{ FH_DATE_PAST_20XX
header   FH_DATE_PAST_20XX      Date =~ /20[2-9][0-9]/ [if-unset: 2006]
describe FH_DATE_PAST_20XX      The date is grossly in the future.

Making it not a problem until we reach 2020 🙂

On my ubuntu box the rule is found in:

/usr/share/spamassassin/72_active.cf

Special thanks to Habbie for making me aware of the problem on IRC!

oh and by the way:

Happy New Year!

🙂

a wonderful xmas :)

I had a wonderful Christmas this year 🙂

On the 24th, my girlfriend Kirsteen flew in from Vienna, where she lives, and she stayed until the 27th. We did the whole exchange of gifts on Christmas-eve, a first for me – it’s more a British tradition I think, and since she’s Scottish … I think I’m converted 🙂 She liked what I got her, and I loved what she got me.

Otherwise, we did nothing exceptional for x-mas, the usual: stuff yourself with food and watch a ton of movies (I has Blu-Ray).  She brought the latest Star Trek movie on DVD (great!), which she got from her friend Amber for x-mas.

Unfortunately, my daughter could not join the party, but that’s life for you. I still have some gifts for her, so she’ll get them later.

New years will involve working for me, one of the tragedies of life as a computer geek.  But in January I will see both my girls again, and I ‘m looking forward to that a lot.  A trip to Kirsteen in Vienna (and a trip to Bratislava together from there) is in the works. And I’m sure we’ll enjoy that little break very much.

leopard-h57-satinblack-09

January will also (hopefully) finally bring the delivery of my new bike (picture on the right). I’ve been biking to work since I started my new job at Mirabeau Hoorn in November, it’s a mere 15 minute trip and the first time I’ve worked so close to home that I can bike there. I love it every day (and hey, it’s healthy too!).

Venezuela: ‘Dutch Antilles are ours, US and Dutch gearing up for aggression’

Venezuela president Chavez used the climate summit for his own political agenda, in a speech where he claims Venezuelan rights to the Dutch Antilles, an island group 40 miles north of Venezuela.

These islands have been under Dutch control since the 17th century. Long before attempts of Venezuela to become itself independent.

It seems Chavez is quite fearful of an American invasion, since he also claims that US secret agents, spy planes and warships are staging at the Antilles. Paranoia is rarely a good trait in a head of state.

One would hope Chavez thinks twice about actually claiming those Islands, specially since his tone suggests military action to claim them and secure the islands from US presence. The Dutch military might be small, but it is not weak, and this county is a NATO member. Any attack on Dutch territory is grounds for full NATO response. Venezuela is by no means a weak country, nor poor, but anyone will doubt it’s ability to withstand such a reaction.

However, I think Chavez knows this, the man is not stupid, and that makes this just another feeble attempt to get attention. He is nervous about his neighbor Colombia allowing more US troops in, though he fails to see the why behind it.

So, he thinks everything within 200 nautical miles of the Venezuela northern coast is Venezuela territory? That’s nice, I think international law decrees otherwise.

December 18, 2009Permalink 1 Comment

Note to self: Dow Jones will break 10,000+ threshold within 2-4 months

Looking at past, future, and current performance of the global stock market, I estimate the Down Jones will shoot through the 10K+ threshold within 2-4 months (probably closer to 2 then to 4).

The Dow Jones Index will continue it’s climb after that, unless some banks go and do something decidedly stupid, and stock analysts start panicking again.

September 1, 2009Permalink 3 Comments