Month: March 2010

Maintaining Screen Output

In my post about getting started with KVM I noted the fact that I had problems keeping screen output after the program exits [1]. The following snippet of shell code demonstrates the solution I’ve discovered for this problem. It determines whether SCREEN is the parent process of the shell script and if so it sleeps […]


Starting with KVM

I’ve just bought a new Thinkpad that has hardware virtualisation support and I’ve got KVM running. HugePages The Linux-KVM site has some information on using hugetlbfs to allow the use of 2MB pages for KVM [1]. I put “vm.nr_hugepages = 1024” in /etc/sysctl.conf to reserve 2G of RAM for KVM use. The web page notes […]


Thinkpad T61

I’ve now had my new Thinkpad T61 [1] for almost a month. The letters on the keyboard are not even starting to wear off which is unusual, either this Thinkpad is built with harder plastic than the older ones or I’m typing more softly. Memory The first thing I did after receiving it was to […]


The Yubikey

Some time ago Yubico were kind enough to send me an evaluation copy of their Yubikey device. I’ve finally got around to reviewing it and making deployment plans for buying some more. Above is a picture of my Yubikey on the keyboard of my Thinkpad T61 for scale. The newer keys apparently have a different […]


Types of Security Tokens

The Security Token Wikipedia page doesn’t seem to clearly describe the types of token. Categories of Security Token It seems to me that the following categories encompass all security tokens: Biometric tokens – which seems rather pointless to me. Having a device I control verify my biometric data doesn’t seem to provide a benefit. The […]


CAL – Self-Serving and Useless

Brendan Scott linked to a couple of articles about CAL (the Copyright Agency Limited) [1]. I have previously written about CAL and the way that they charge organisations for the work of others without their consent [2]. My personal dispute with CAL is that they may be charging people to use my work, I have […]


Designing a Secure Linux System

The Threat Bruce Schneier’s blog post about the Mariposa Botnet has an interesting discussion in the comments about how to make a secure system [1]. Note that the threat is considered to be remote attackers, that means viruses and trojan horses – which includes infected files run from USB devices (IE you aren’t safe just […]


Storage vs RAM Size

In a comment on my post Shared Objects and Big Applications about memlockd [1] mic said that they use memlockd to lock the entire root filesystem in RAM. Here is a table showing my history of desktop computers with the amounts of RAM, disk capacity, and CPU power available. All systems better than a 386-33 […]

Misc Computer

Opera and Trusting Applications vs Trusting Servers

The Opera-Mini Dispute I have just read an interesting article about the Opera browser [1]. The article is very critical of Opera-Mini on the iPhone for many reasons – most of which don’t interest me greatly. There are lots of technical trade-offs that you can make when designing an application for a constrained environment (EG […]


Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Diagnosis A few weeks ago I was referred to a specialist for the treatment of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. I first noticed the symptoms in early January, it started happening at night with a partial numbness in the fingers of my left hand. I didn’t think much of it at first as it’s the expected symptom […]