Category: linux

I have a machine at home running Linux Mint 16 (Petra) that I decided to do an upgrade to 17 (Qiana), and what is it about Ubuntu and its derivatives that make doing an upgrade so difficult?! I’ve had Ubuntu itself break during upgrades before, and decided to quit using Ubuntu partially as a result. But I’ve had pretty good luck with Mint in the past, and, well, not so much any more. The networking is completely broken now. Not just wireless, but wired as well. ifconfig shows no network adapters other than loopback.

To be fair, I haven’t had much of a chance to investigate to see if it’s something incredibly simple, but if stuff like this keeps happening, I’m going back to a monolithic kernel and building everything from source 😉

Doors under WWiV

As promised, here is how to set up doors under WWIV for Linux. It took a lot of trial and error, and pouring over documents and howtos for other BBS packages, but I finally found the solution at Daydream BBS software support. I was going to provide an actual walk-through, but then I realized that I didn’t deviate from those instructions. So, follow the directions there to a tee, and you’ll have no issues at all. My external maintenance script is run via cron and uses pretty much the exact same setup, except I do not pass -u virtual to dosemu, as it will fail because that script does not run from a vty, and serial { virtual com 1 } assumes that you’re running from a vty.

You could also write separate scripts instead of using the door_script that’s provided, but that’s not really needed except in cased like tedit (for TW), as it runs from the TW folder. So I just modified a copy door_script to hard-code the door name and folder. You could do this for every door if you wished, but I find it just as easy to use the single script.

If anyone needs any specific help, please ask.

Thoughts on WWiV on Linux

Here are some of my thoughts on running WWiV 5 under Linux. First, it’s fairly simple, especially if you do your initial 4.30 setup under dosemu instead of DosBox. The difference between the two is that DosBox creates Linux filenames which are all upper case, while dosemu creates them lower case. WWiV 5 under Linux requires them in lower care, in general. Directory names are defined via WWiV’s init (or, initlite) so can be either. Some of the menus need to be upper case because they are called that way from other menus, but the extensions should be lower case. The main menu files should be lower case, but the menu editor might choke on them, so ln -s each file to an upper case filename with lower case extension. This might be required to get editing to work on the other menus as well, but I don’t recall.

Aside from upper/lower case filename issues, there are a few bugs I’ve noticed which appear in the current build under Linux, but not Windows. First, the time left always displays as 0, which is a problem primarily for the door dropfiles. The problem appears to be that IsUserOnline() never returns true under Linux for some reason. The fix was to open utility.cpp and, within the function double nsl(), find the first if statement, and add ” || 1″ to the first if statement so that it always evaluates to true, instead of to false.

The second bug has to do with filenames as well. in printfile.cpp, the function printfile() doesn’t build the filename.ext based on the user’s ANSI settings, and only displays the filename exactly how it is passed to it. Because filenames are quite often passed without an extension so that non-ansi users will get filename.msg while ansi users will get filename.ans, this causes quite a few menus/help items to be broken by default. My solution for this was to temporarily remove the extensions from those files that are passed to printfile() without one. This means no separate ansi/non-ansi files, unfortunately. But most modern telnet clients should support ansi, so that’s not a huge deal. The bigger issue is the telnet client not using the correct upper-ascii character set. FWIW, this is CP437, and is supported in both the Linux and Windows versions of putty.

In a future post, I will detail how I got DOS doors to work. This took a lot of trial and error, but ultimately worked great 🙂

WWiV 5 on Linux

Just thought I’d let everyone know what I’ve been up to of late – working on WWiV 5 on Linux. So far, it’s installed and (somewhat) functional, but, because I am compiling it natively, and not running under DOSbox or dosemu (which I *have* contemplated using 4.24a instead), I am having problems with doors. I have to run them under dosemu, and it doesn’t appear that the dosemu autoexec.bat is running. When I telnet in, and go to the doors, I launch a DOS door, and it hangs at “Launching…” until I press CTRL-C, then it drops me back at the door menu. I feel like I’m pretty close to cracking that nut, though, at which point I’ll work on some networking (WWiVnet, Fidonet, and Usenet… Maybe Dovenet) and let everyone know how to access it once those are done. Very, very close. 🙂

Linux CLI tricks

tuxOne of the reasons I enjoy Linux so much, I think, is because I’ve always been a fan of the command line, even after the GUI came into its own. So here are a couple of articles that I’ve recently bookmarked showing a couple of cool Linux CLI tricks.

The first is how to look up the geographic location of an IP address from the command line, which could come in especially handy during an ARG 😉

Second is how to use Google Translate from the terminal.

Finally, here’s 20 great terminal replacements for GUI applications.

Just wanted to share 🙂

AV Linux

Over the weekend, I had a little bit of time to play around with AV Linux a little bit. Unfortunately, I did not have a ton of time to play with it, but was able to use this guide with a live USB stick to play a little guitar, using my netbook as an effects pedal/amp. Worked great, but what I’m really looking forward to playing with is using my netbook as a DAW (digital audio workstation). The live environment ran incredibly smooth for the limited resources of the netbook, and I’m guessing an actual install might run a little better yet. Screen real estate is a bit tight, but that’s OK. The inverter in my LCD screen is going out, so I can’t use the netbook for much without an external monitor anyhow.

Privacy and open source

I just ran across an article titled “75 Top Open Source Tools for Protecting Your Privacy” that looks promising, and thought I’d point everyone over there. If nothing else, everyone should check out number one on their list, the Tor Browser. Tor is a wonderful project, which I hope to post more about later, which makes your online activity anonymous. The Tor Browser makes installing and using Tor for web browsing a snap.