"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." (Robert A. Heinlein)

Friday, 23 August 2013

Test Drive : Linux Deepin 12.12 on the EEEPC

Some time ago, while looking for some Linux related new on the 'net, I read this review about a Linux distribution I never heard before: Deepin.
Deepin is a Linux Distribution, based on Ubuntu, originally created for the Chinese users pool but also available in English language. Apart from positive reviews what really interested me has been the fact Deepin comes with its own desktop environment (Deepin DE) based on Gnome Shell.
I so decided to test how it works on the EEEPC.

First impressions

I prepared a bootable USB disk with Deepin with the usual process: download the ISO image from Deepin download page then write to the flash disk using Unetbootin.
Here is how Deepin looks like just after boot:
I must say Deepin default theme and wallpaper appear aesthetically well refined. This means nothing on the long run but might be dramatically important to give a good first impression to new users.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Mercurial and Mercurial-server : playing with DVCS (part 2)

In my previous post I moved my first steps with Mercurial DVCS, now I'll install a Mercurial server implementation and configure both my computers to access it using SSH protocol.


With DVCS you don't have to use a central server, repositories could be shared over LAN using shared folders, but this doesn't mean you can't have one. Various mercurial server side implementations exists, using different protocols. May be I'm too server-client minded but I didn't feel satisfied by just sharing repositories over a shared folder so I decided to install Mercurial-server.
Installing Mercurial-server is an easy task the command
sudo apt-get install mercurial-server
complete the installation process and the creation of the application user (hg). A bit more complex is configuring SSH for accessing the server, I mainly followed instructions from here and from Mercurial-server documentation.
Mercurial-server uses public-key authentication and SSH-Agent in order to grant access to its clients, so the first step has been to generate a keys couple for SSH. The ssh-keygen command does this interactively.
maxx@VeritonS661:~$ ssh-keygen -t dsa
Generating public/private dsa key pair.
Enter file in which to save the key (/home/maxx/.ssh/id_dsa):
Enter passphrase (empty for no passphrase):
Enter same passphrase again:
Your identification has been saved in /home/maxx/.ssh/id_dsa.
Your public key has been saved in /home/maxx/.ssh/id_dsa.pub.
I then copied the public key in mercurial-server keys configuration path and told mercurial-server to refresh its authentication files, using the following commands:
ssh-add -L > maxx.key
sudo mkdir /etc/mercurial-server/keys/root/maxx
sudo cp maxx.key /etc/mercurial-server/keys/root/maxx /veritons661
sudo -u hg /usr/share/mercurial-server/refresh-auth
the usual path for mercurial-server keys is (for root users)
but if the same user must be accessed from different machines a different path is used:
since I was going to add the maxx user from the EEEPC too I had to use, of course, the second from. On the EEEPC side I generated SSH keys at the same manner then, after logging to the desktop computer (the server) with:
ssh -A veritons661
and I eventually registered EEEPC's maxx user like this
ssh-add -L > eeepc900.key
sudo cp eeepc900.key /etc/mercurial-server/keys/root/maxx/eeepc900
sudo -u hg /usr/share/mercurial-server/refresh-auth