Mounting a iso file as a drive

FreeBSD can mount most types images.  This quick article shows how to mount an iso file into the FreeBSD file system but this same technique will work with almost any image files (as long as FreeBSD understands the file system in the image).   

Sync'ing content between two servers.

There are a number of reasons why it may be an advantage to sync the data in a directory (or the whole disk) from one server to another. This technique has been used to backup one server to another, sync mailboxes or sync the ports tree.

FreeBSD on a Dell M1330 XPS Laptop

    The Dell M1330 XPS is a fantastic laptop.  It's fast, light, and has everything I need to use built right in. Getting FreeBSD to run on it wasn't much of a problem but it did take sme work to get it to recognize all the different hardware in it. This is an account of what I did to get FReeBSD 7.x to work with the hardware. I still don't have it working with all the hardware (or not as well as I would like), so this is an on going article that I will be updating as more and more of the hardware is supported.

Mailman 2.1.10 on FreeBSD / Postfix

    Mailman is an excellent mailing list manager. It comes complete with the list manager and a CGI web frontend for admin and users.  I have used to for a number of years to handle very large and small mailing lists. Here is a quick rundown on installing and intergrating Mailman into postfix running on FreeBSD.


Using CARP on FreeBSD 7.x

    CARP provides a way to build redundant, fault tolerant services using FreeBSD and standard PC hardware. It was origonaly designed after Cisco's VRRP (Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol) but can be used to make almost any service redundant. CARP was first created in OpenBSD and then ported over to FreeBSD. 

Setting up an NTP Time Server

What is NTP?

NTP stands for Network Time Protocol. It is a set of software programs that are used to keep accurate time on computers. It accomplishes this by referring to other time sources and then using some intelligent algorithms and taking into consideration transmission delays, and other factors arrives at very precise time keeping.

Keep systems in sync with rsync

   When I am upgrading a system or moving some services from one server to anyother, there is always a need to keep the production data in sync with the new development server.  Sure you can make a snapshot of the current data on the production server and then test it on your develpment server, make another snapshot, test some more, and then a final snapshot as you switch it over to production.  This seems like a lot of work pushing data back and forth.  There is an easier way that will keep the data on the systems in sync. It's called rsync and is quite easy to setup and use.

Setting a Smarthost in Postfix

Postfix is an excellent email server that is available as a port for FreeBSD. My mail server is running in a Shaw cable modem as every now and they Shaw skrews up and starts blocking generic outbound SMTP cnnections from my mail server. Grrr.. When this happens I need a way to setup Postfix so that it will smarthost my mail through the shaw mail server. Here’s how to do I that:

Using SSH shared keys

OpenSSH has the ability to use a number of authenitcation mechanisms. One of the most popular (next to plain passwords) is using shared keys.  Shared keys can give you a lot of security while still allowing more flexability than simple passwords. Once the keys are setup, it allows a user to secure shell into a box without a password.  This is only used when you trust the remote users account as much as if it was on the local box. If the remote user is on an insecure machine or not trusted then another authentication mechanism would be a better choise. The real benifit for shared keys comes in when you need a script on one machine to be able to run a program on another machine in a secure and encrypted manner.