Minor format fixes

I had a spurious carriage return in the RSS feed output that some I think xerxes based RSS readers like spaRSS didn’t like.  It’s fixed now – can someone else running spaRSS confirm in a comment?   Or just confirm that you aren’t getting RSS errors now if you were for the last few days.

Static site generator recommendations

I’ve gradually been leaning towards two opinions:

1: Having the Digest load as fast as possible is a benefit for everyone, and

2: I want to get off the PHP/Wordpress vulnerability merry-go-round.

Does anyone have specific experience with static site generators?  Ideally there’s something out there as polished/unfiddly as WordPress, but I don’t know what.  The Digest started using the Movable Type product, and I’m tempted to return.

Update: People have been recommending Hugo, Pelican, and Jekyll.  It looks like comments would end up going into Disqus, which is an external not-under-my-control application.  There are other plugins for comments, but none of them as straightforward.  What are people’s thoughts on using an outside service?

Site downtime

The machine this site runs on just had a fan die, so somewhere in the next 24 hours, I’m going to be installing a new fan, and a new hard drive while I’m at it.  Expect a few hours of downtime as I rebuild both hardware and software.

A few quiet days

Quiet for you, the reader, at least.  My schedule is irregular because of work over the next few days – including the weekend – so regular posting may not resume until next week.  Sorry!

Argh, https

For some reason, OpenSSL-using command line clients – but not any browsers – are choking on the RSS feed for this site when fetched via https.  So, the site no longer defaults to https.  It’s still available if you want to use it, and I’ll work on fixing the setup.

The way to see it is:

openssl s_client -connect www.dragonflydigest.com:443

You will notice an error in the output like this:

672060044:error:140790E5:SSL routines:SSL23_WRITE:ssl handshake failure:/usr/src/secure/lib/libssl/../../../crypto/openssl/ssl/s23_lib.c:184:

There’s lots of references to errors like this out there – many different, some for bugs long fixed.  I daresay it’s a configuration screwup I haven’t figured out yet; I’ve noticed that adding -tls1 or -no_tls1 or -ssl2 or -ssl3 to the above command makes the problem go away.

 

RSS feed issues

Since the switch to https here, the RSS feed has been having trouble, as several people reported.  I haven’t had time to look into it much so far.  Though I suppose it’s only likely that you are reading this if you are unaffected by it.

A domain name change

The Digest is now located at dragonflydigest.com (or dragonflybsddigest.com if you are really into typing).  Everything else should be generally the same, and old links still work.  I’m only 8 or 9 years late in getting a real domain name attached…

Missing Twitter posts

The plugin I use for posting to Twitter managed to silently stop working after a recent WordPress upgrade.   It’s fixed now.  Thanks to alert reader TJ for telling me.  If you are picking up articles here through Twitter, you have some backlog waiting for you.

Short outage, sorry

I knocked my own server out of commission today – sorry!  I thought it was because I was experimenting with an IPv6 tunnel – but no.  It appears to be a long-running Minecraft server.  Once that was gone, it all got better.

Wanted: a Mailman patch

One of the most-requested items for the DragonFly mailing list archives is reverse sorting by date.  Mailman, which is what’s being used now for archiving, doesn’t have a ‘native’ way to do that.  Has anyone seen a trick/patch to get that to happen?  I already patch Mailman to get the message date to show in listings.

Server issues

shiningsilence.com suffered a disk failure early this morning.  I’ll take the opportunity to set up a new machine, given that my local backup drive hasn’t been mounted and my remote backup went offline, in a horrible coincidence.

The disk is up and limping, which is why you can read this, but I’m still rebuilding.  What motherboard/CPU/RAID/etc. parts do people recommend?

Switching to dports software

I changed shiningsilence.com over from pkgsrc to dports over the last 48 hours or so.  Here’s how it went, in a series of bullet points:

  • I had to download dports source and build the pkg tool by hand; since this system was upgraded from DragonFly 3.2 to DragonFly 3.4, pkg wasn’t automatically present as it would be for a new installation.
  • I took the output of ‘pkg_info’ and culled it down to the applications I knew I used, and that formed my ‘to-install’ list for dports.  That worked in a very straightforward way.
  • It took so long mostly because of two things: I was also dealing with an email problem at my workplace, which usually took precedence.  Also, I had several applications that I had previously installed by hand and needed to reconfigure to work as a dports item.
  • Installing from binaries is really fast!  Really, the dports part of this was possibly the most brief.
  • The only thing I needed to compile from source was php, in order to get the Apache plugin.  I’m sort of surprised the option isn’t on by default.
  • Using ‘pkg search packagename’ is a good idea, because ‘pkg install’ can pick up multiple versions of a package.  e.g. ‘pkg install mysql-server’ selects mysql-server51, mysql-server55, and mysql-server56.  You probably don’t want to install all three.  Or even one, depending on your opinions.
  • Overall, it went more easily than I had expected, given it only had half of my attention.