Hacker's Diary

A rough account of what I did with Emacs recently.

April 29
Green Zone is a fairly decent thriller, as you'd expect from post-Bourne Matt Damon; not a whole lot else to say about it - there are no surprises in this movie, except that they apparently didn't have the budget or schedule to pay for Brendan Gleeson to come back for the finale reshoots. Worth a look.

April 26
It took a bit of effort, but since the Windows version of Arq doesn't seem to support creating a restricted AWS account by itself, I reverse-engineered the Mac one and applied that to a Windows backup - and lo, it appears to have worked. I'll poke at it a bit more and then maybe post some details here.

April 24
While upgrading SSL certs on DSPsrv, I took advantage of the fact that StartSSL now supports up to 5 subject names per cert, so one cert serves all purposes. Also turned on opportunistic TLS on the SMTP server and - for once - made sure that all presented certs actually validate (complicated by the fact that noone seems to quite agree on how this should work; exim and dovecot both support putting the entire cert chain in the cert file, but disagree over ordering, for example.

April 21
Excellent, I've successfully spoofed the top-level folder in the fake Time Machine backup so that Time Machine displays the range of backups correctly. It might be that the additional tomfoolery is only of use to Time Machine itself for thinning out backups (as best I can tell, they index the oldest and newest snapshots containing any given file, plus some metadata about snapshots).

April 19
I've been gradually pushing a backup script towards emulating Time Machine, as previously noted, and while I've finally got what I think is the correct filesystem layout, Time Machine was still refusing to consider the result valid. So now I'm looking at file attributes and it seems like this might be the one piece I'm missing. Downside: it looks like every file that goes into the backup gets some attribute tagging; given that I do the backup using rsync, that means doing a traversal of the backup after the fact and adding all the attributes. Ouch.

April 17
Applied the various OS and software upgrades I'd been avoiding on the Mac Mini pending the hard drive replacement. All appears to have gone smoothly.

April 16
Had to replace a hard drive in the Mac Mini, and had been putting off various upgrades pending that, so I finally decided to do it last night. Trying to figure out which of the two drives to replace proved to be ... non-trivial; getting the serial number of the failed drive from the Mac's perspective involved googling, then matching output of a command to a hunch; then I popped open the case and discovered that I couldn't find the serial number on it anywhere. Swapped what I thought was the correct drive, reassembled everything - because unlike my old PCs, running a Mac half-assembled isn't something I feel comfortable with, nor am I sure it'd even work - and reckoned I'd replaced the wrong drive. While puzzling over this, I looked at the drive I'd removed, and only then did I find the serial number and, yes, it was the wrong drive. Reopened the case, swapped things around again, reassembled, and everything was back in order.

April 15
Another throwback to the 80s: The Witches of Eastwick, starring Jack Nicholson's eyebrows and a supporting cast. It's an odd sort of movie, but a bit of fun. Trivia: ILM did the effects. Clearly the Star Wars money was running out.

April 9
Hendrix showed up on a hotel channel, so we watched that. It gets slated a lot - it's a TV movie with a cast of People You Probably Don't Know and sod-all budget - but as a broad synopsis of Hendrix' life it's not bad.

April 8
In Bantry for my birthday weekend. Watched The Living Daylights because it was on the hotel TV. I think I may have originally seen this in the cinema. In any case, it's not a bad movie, and I think Dalton makes a good "Book Bond" - which really, I guess, wasn't what people wanted at the time, since he only got two outings before Brosnan took over as a less harsh Bond.

April 7
Got myself an iPhone 6 (yes, the "old" model) as a birthday present. Also the customary Otterbox to stop me from smashing it into tiny pieces at the first available opportunity.

Annoyingly, the Amazon Basics lightning cables, of which I have about eleventy-seven, do not fit the opening on the Otterbox case.

April 3
I've been running Arq on my Mac for most of the last month, and it's quitely doing an hourly backup to encrypted S3 files for me. At this stage I've decided it's sufficiently unobtrusive and reliable that it's worth paying for. Really cute feature: their storage format is open, so you can use open-source tools to access it, or fiddle around with it yourself if you're so inclined.

Ancestry seem to have altered their website recently in such a way as to break the Back button on Safari; if you use it, all the javascript-driven stuff on the page (which appears to be everything, even what should be simple links) stops working. This would be less laughable if it weren't for the fact that some pages essentially direct you to use the Back button (or they have a link that is the javascript equivalent of same).

April 1
The somewhat chest-beating America The Great stuff aside ("we totally don't torture people in our custody"), Bridge of Spies is a well-made movie and worth seeing. That is all.

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April Fish!