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Posts Tagged ‘Ubuntu’

Installing Intrepid Ibex on a USB Key

January 15, 2009 Leave a comment

I started doing some machine level coding this month and it is the most complicated programming language I have ever seen. It takes quite a bit of time outputing “hello world” on the terminal. It’s not the same as just importing your libraries, creating your class and typing out, system.out.println(“hello world”);, or printf(“hello world”);. The high level programming languages like C, C++, C#, or Java make this so much easy for you, but once you start assembly language, you’re done! It will take a lot more time to get to know how the language works.

So, I figured the best way to write assembly language is in linux. So I decided to hop on the band wagon and download the most popular unix/linux variant I can find which happens to be Ubuntu. I downloaded Ubuntu 8.10 or what many like to call it, Intrepid Ibex. I already have Hardy Heron (8.04) on my computer as dual boot with Windows XP so I decided to install it on my 8 Gb USB key. I used this article from PenDriveLinux in order to install to USB. The installation process is actually the same thing as just installing it on your computer. The article states that you should remove any existing hard drives in your computer/laptop before you plug in the USB, but you don’t have to. As long as you know the name of the hard drive(s) on your computer and the name of the USB key, you should be fine. Oh, you have to make sure to set your BiOS to boot from CD and if you want to use the Ubuntu USB, then you better make sure your computer can boot from USB as I learned the hard way. In the partition option, they give you which storage device you can partition and it will show you the USB key. Choose the USB key from the list and start the installation. Usually installing Ubuntu on a computer takes around half an hour. It depends on the reading/writing speed of your hard drive and the CD/DVD drive. If you install it on USB though, you better make some popcorn because it will take a while. It took about an hour and a half to finish installation but when it finally finished installing I leapt with glee, only to have it brought back down to observing HOW SLOW it is on USB. The operating system is so slow on USB; due to the fact it is SSD technology slowing it down, a lot. I’ll open up Firefox and it will take about thirty seconds for the program to pop up and when I create three empty tabs….it takes a LONG time for the program to respond. You actually might think that the program stopped responding but, just be patient and you’ll see. Anyways I had enough of that once I tried out the many applications that came with Intrepid Ibex. They just took too much time to boot up and I couldn’t do any work on it. The terminal was even slow and I couldn’t do my machine level coding on it.

Well, it was waste of 8 Gb. It was cool installing the OS on my USB key but the end results do not satisfy the curiosity. Next time I’ll install it on my external hard drive and see how that goes.

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Getting Caught on the Ubuntu Forums

July 29, 2008 3 comments

I was sifting through the Ubuntu forums trying to get some help for my Hardy Heron problems and I come upon this post. Someone, better known as bradcarr posts a message asking for help/confirmation of Linux questions he had. These twenty questions came from a questionnaire he got when he applied for a job. Reading those questions, I knew that was too advanced for me. I could only answer one question and that wasn’t even a Linux oriented question.


1. Give an example of set of shell commands that will give you the number of files in a directory
2. How do you tell what process has a TCP port open in Linux
3. On a Red Hat Linux Variant how do you control whether a service starts when the system boots
4. How do you tell the amount of free disk space left on a volume
5. Give an example of a set of shell commands to tell how many times “bob” has logged on to the system this month
6. Give an example of a recursively copying a directory from one location to another.
7. How do you modify the IP and Net mask of a system running a Red Hat Variant of Linux
8. Give an example of a set of shell commands that will give you the number of “httpd” processes running on a Linux box.
9. On CentOS or Fedora based system using the package management application, how do you tell what package provided the file “libnss_ldap.so”
10. What is the difference between VTP client, server, and transparent
11. What is the maximum length of CAT6
12. How does one set up a layer two link to share VLANs
13. How does one implement redundant links at Layer 2
14. What is the difference between a hub, switch, and a router
a. What are the security advantages of switch vs. hub
15. Show an example of using telnet to learn the headers of an http server.
16. In what OSI layer does PPP exist
17. What’s the difference between TCP and UDP
18. Given a DNS server that has just started (with an empty cache) and host contacting this DNS server (using it’s OS setting) to learn an address for google.com, list the steps the DNS server will take to learn it with IP addresses (each step will have multiple possible IP addresses – you need choose only one per step).
19. Why are layer 2 loops bad, and what protocol was designed to prevent them
20. Given a radius server at 10.0.0.2 and a shared key of ‘abc123’ show the IOS commands necessary to authenticate switch users against the radius server, while still allowing the use of local username / password pairs

Bradcarr asks for help on some of these questions and confirmation on his answers. Too bad he didn’t leave his answers in the post, ’cause no one helped him out. It turns out that he applied for a job as a network engineer and apparently these are very basic questions.

I go to the second page and well…what do we have here? A member, ptinsley, writes down,

“For those who have commented, it is indeed an entry level network administration position with some Linux skills required as most of our network management tools run on Linux. I would also like to say thank you for the very sensible comments you all have made about the call for answers. And “bradcarr” while you haven’t broken the rules of my questionnaire you have definitely broken the spirit of the exercise. I did indeed say you could use any resource available to you, but didn’t it cross your mind that this might be the wrong thing to do? I want to see the “real world” ability of a potential employee, not what they can recite in an interview but what they can come up with using their normal information sources to solve a problem or research a subject.

This has shown me that you won’t take the initiative to research a problem, even when it might land you a job. I “googled” most of these questions before making the list and most of them are very easily discovered. It didn’t seem to me that I was asking too much for people to use mailing lists, forums, IRC whatever to compile the answers themselves. I actually expected to see some questions show up on forums but I didn’t expect someone to paste the entire thing and expect the forum users to do all the work that would qualify you for an interview. I think at this point you could save us all some time and not turn the answers back in, I already have the information I need on your answers.

As far as the rest of you, if there are any of you reading this thread that live in the Nashville area that want a network administration job with some Linux work feel free to shoot me your resume at paul.tinsley@lightningsource.com. Oh, while you are at it, go ahead and send me the answers to the questions.”

Oooh dam, looks like ptinsley was bradcarr’s potential employer and he found out about his post. Looks like he fancies the Ubuntu forums on a regular basis or someone tipped him off.

Its pretty smart for bradcarr to come on the Ubuntu forums and ask for these questions. Maybe not in the manner he posted, but I would definitely come to these forums for help if I were in his position. I mean ptinsley did say to use any resources available to him. The way the excercise was supposed to be was to see how resourceful bradcarr is. But I guess the way Bradcarr asked on the forums was…a little across the line into cheating or using immoral methods? Then again, he was allowed to use any resource he could use. All I know is, bradcarr won’t be getting the job.