1. SSH Public Key Authentication

    A lot of people use SSH to log into remote hosts. SSH is secure and works well, but if you have to access many hosts with long, well-chosen passwords there is a lot of typing to do just for authentication.

    In this article I'll walk you through a basic public …

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  2. From RCS to Mercurial

    I've been a happy user of RCS for years (in fact, my software engineering course at university was held by Walter Tichy, the original author of RCS). The good old Revision Control System may be a dinosaur, but it served me well for my configuration files and scripts.

    Over the …

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  3. Building RPMs Without Root Access

    This week at work I had the opportunity to build an RPM for some third-party software package.

    My previous experiences with RPM date back to SuSE 5 almost ten years ago and I haven't touched it ever since. Packaging for Debian or even NetBSD is mostly a painless process, so …

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  4. Creating HTML Reports with Oracle's SQL*Plus

    Oracle's sqlplus command line utility feels a bit antiquated for spoilt open source users. But with a bit of tweaking, you can generate nice database reports in HTML. Sure, the syntax is arcane, but if you're used to Perl you can get used to anything.

    The following basic example prints …

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  5. Printing RFCs and Internet Drafts

    The a2ps command line utility converts text files to PostScript which can then be sent to a printer. The resulting output contains all kinds of boxes and additional information which limits the space on the printed page to make your own notes.

    Of course, this can all be turned off …

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  6. Using D-Bus Introspection

    To control a D-Bus-enabled application, you need the interface definition to find out which methods are offered and which parameters they expect.

    Of course, you can get the relevant interface definition from the application's source distribution. But there's an easier way: Ask the object in question via D-Bus to …

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