BenV's notes

Archive for December, 2009

Favicon.ico generation

by on Dec.30, 2009, under Boring

Since I keep forgetting how the heck I create these favicon.ico files (or favicon or Favorites Icon), it’s time to put it here. (continue reading…)

Leave a Comment :, more...

Apache 2.2 and PHP configuration fun on Slackware 13

by on Dec.28, 2009, under Software

As I love to tinker around with apache/php installations to get them to work as fast as possible while still keeping some security in tact, I found myself messing around with FastCGI today. But why?! Here’s why:
On this machine I previously installed suPhP to get php scripts to run as a normal unix user instead of user apache (so users have the ability to completely lock out their database settings etc for other users on that machine). However, to speed stuff up on a magento webshop I wanted to have a PHP opcode cache running (I tried out APC). (continue reading…)

1 Comment :, , , , more...

WordPress hits 2.9 with another failed auto-upgrade.

by on Dec.21, 2009, under Software

Here we go again, wordpress has an update to version 2.9 this time.

New features include “automatic database optimization support”, which you can enable by putting define('WP_ALLOW_REPAIR', true); in your wp-config.php file.
The rest you’ll run into yourself, it’s a ton of new stuff and fixes but some cool stuff like a built-in image editor and easier embedding of your favorite youtube junk.

Needless to say the automatic upgrade failed AGAIN for me:

Downloading update from

Download failed.: Operation timed out after 60 seconds with 1560944 bytes received

Installation Failed

Fortunately, my previous patch still works. Get it here if you want.

After patching that single line the automagic upgrade ended with: WordPress upgraded successfully. Jeeeej.
However, they still left the timeout at 60 seconds in the newer version 🙁

# grep wp_remote_get wp-admin/includes/file.php
$response = wp_remote_get($url, array('timeout' => 60));

Failers. They deserve a 56k6 modem for their servers so they can find out about these issues themselves 😉

Leave a Comment :, more...

Google Gears on Slackware 64 and firefox

by on Dec.14, 2009, under Software

Don’t ask me why, but for some greasemonkey script that I wanted to run in Firefox I needed Google Gears.
So I went to the gears site with Firefox, and it told me that it needed to install some plugin. Yeah, whatever.
I hit the big Install Gears button, completely ignoring the tiny and almost invisible for my eyes 32-bit OS (64-bit not supported) notice below it.
Needless to say it went on to download a 3.5Mb package, started some popups and other junk after which it notified me of my grave mistake.
Aha. So for some reason Google is too incompetent to work with 64 bits software…. even microsoft can deal with that these days guys, geesh. (continue reading…)

1 Comment :, , , more...


by on Dec.08, 2009, under Software

Time to continue our adventure into Sieve land from yesterday.

Yesterday the result was that Sieve scripts could be put in place by the system administrator and they work. Needless to say that’s cumbersome and we want users to handle it themselves.
To avoid all possible issues with opening up FTP / DAV / whatever, the clowns at Dovecot and the ietf have decided to create a new protocol for it. Currently still a draft, but it will be an official protocol called ManageSieve. (continue reading…)

Leave a Comment :, , , more...

Qmail + vpopmail + Dovecot and Sieve

by on Dec.07, 2009, under Software

Let’s start with a problem description. We start out with a -working- mailer:
A pretty simple qmail/vpopmail installation with Courier IMAP and the pop3d that comes with qmail. This is administered by users with the qmailadmin frontend and allows for creation of mailboxes and forwards by postmasters. Together with spamdyke and spamassassin it works pretty well. So why change it?

The problem: First of all, Courier is a piece of shit. The various parts of it have broken in various ways over the years (authd hanging for no apparent reason or suddenly eating a ton of memory, stuff like that). Not only that, but they decided that vpopmail wasn’t worth supporting anymore, so their latest release of courier-authlib simply doesn’t handle vpopmail anymore. (don’t ask me why, can’t find any details on it).
Second of all, it would be cool to give our users the ability to create their own custom mail filters on our server. Stuff that you can do in thunderbird or through webmail, so they can setup their mailbox filters and vacation messages and whatever without me having to help them. (well…. we’ll see about that). Needless to say we could do that by giving them access to the .qmail files, but those are way out of their league. Not only that, it would be a security nightmare. So to solve that, we’re trying the Sieve disaster. I mean language… or something. (continue reading…)

4 Comments :, , more...