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Comment It's here, and it's not. (Score 1) 246

I recently took an exam that covered IP6, so I was *determined* to get it working through a tunnel broker or some such means, just to say I did. I fired up and...I was already on it.

My shared office had recently upgraded their modem from AT&T, which apparently supports v6 out of the box. Absolutely zero manual config on the router or client. Found out later, it's the same with Comcast where I live (northern California).

OTOH, I work at an ISP that has IP6 nowhere on its radar. I haven't raised the issue yet because I'm so new, but I have a few guesses:

  • - We still have a lot of unused v4 addresses in several public /24s. Address depletion is, well, pretty much the only major driving force behind v6.
  • - We are an education network, servicing only schools and school sites, so our number of clients are relatively few, and each client maybe only needs 2-3 public IPs (1 for NATing traffic, and maybe 1 or 2 for public-facing servers)
  • - Potential security risk (I'm not talking about the FUD that NAT=security, I'm talking about things like the v6 flood that, well, crashes any Windows box with v6 enabled[1])
  • - Huge cost to ensure that *every* device, server and router can handle v6, that all network staff are adequately trained, etc.

So, it comes down to huge cost with little to no appreciable gain (for our organization). Sure, routing gets simpler, no NAT overhead, but it's not like v4 is going to disappear overnight. Dual stack is the way it's going to be for a very, very long time. My grandkids may see widespread native v6. Maybe.


Comment Or not... (Score 1) 626

It's kind of strange to me that people would first investigate eating insects before plants. Evidence has never been stronger[1] that a plant-based diet can fully supply all nutritional needs. It's even in Wikipedia's list of common misconceptions that a vegan/vegetarian diet doesn't supply enough protein.[2] Do ants seem more appetizing than some whole grains and legumes? Really?

Disclosure: I'm vegan for health and environmental reasons.


Comment Go with Arch (Score 2) 573

I really want to learn more, don't mind hard work, enjoy challenges, and am perfectly willing to spend hours and hours for months on end to learn command line.

Then Arch should suit you nicely.

It's a very "shell-intensive" distro, but it's exceptionally well-documented. On one computer/screen, get the Arch Wiki open (possibly with in another tab), and get a fresh install of Arch on another computer/screen. If you don't have 2 computers, just load Arch in a VM. Arch is probably the best "learn Linux the hard way(tm)" distro around.

That's basically how I learned, and I'm infinitely better for it.

Comment Proxy (Score 1) 282

I have FreNAS set up on a fairly modest box, originally intended to just host a few files. Then I got curious about just this thing, and installed squid in transparent mode with squidGuard. I want to block tracking and ad content at the network level as a security and privacy concern. I installed a blacklist from squidGuard's website and enabled the appropriate domain and url lists.

After about a week, I must say I'm rather impressed. Caching all http traffic while simultaneously blocking ads and trackers noticeably improved website response times, both for cached and non-cached pages. This improvement is even more dramatic on slower connections. So far, no false positives and only first-party ads aren't blocked. Even better, the transparent proxy means no client-side configuration.

As far as lists affecting speed, squidGuard stores domains in a Berkeley-DB optimized database format that does not degrade performance with even huge blacklists (I think my blacklists are running over 1M domains right now). The real speed hit comes from using regex. However, my simple domain-based blacklist works so well I feel no need to go that route. Besides, I don't want to block first-party ads.

Comment FreeNAS + OpenVPN (Score 2) 165

FreeNAS + OpenVPN is my "cloud" storage. Decent Comcast upstream at home means I have direct access to all my files anywhere, via a single UDP socket secured with certificate-based authentication and encryption. I take special solace knowing I own the hardware my data touches, and FDE on all endpoints ensures another layer of protection.

Comment Deja vu (Score 1) 321

This story jumped out at me because I graduated from an LWSD school back in '04.

One of my hacker / cracker / script kiddie friends nabbed an 0day version of Agobot from IRC, got itchy one day, and executed it at school. I remember clear as day sitting in chemistry, and the intercom sounded, "Teachers, please shut down all computers in your classroom."

The entire school's network was down for a week as the IT staff manually disinfected each computer. My friend was "expelled" into a head-start program at the local community college, while his parents paid a $5,000 fine for the disinfecting labor.

Funny to read a similar story 8 years later...

Comment Re:`Catch-22'? What catch-22? (Score 1) 298

Wait, you're talking about needing to get the job before you can get Linux experience?

If you read my OP, you'd know I already have Linux experience, and a decent amount of it at that. The catch-22 I mentioned refers to the level of Linux experience it seems many jobs require. I can't get 3+ years professional RHEL experience until I get a job administering RHEL, at least presumably. I could install my own home server running RHEL, but I don't know if that would translate to "professional experience." I also don't have hands-on access to advanced server hardware, fibre channel networking, and a dozen other things employers may look for.

Comment Re:Linux is too hard (Score 1) 298

Even as someone who has an extensive background in Windows, I disagree that Windows is easier. I oversee a few SBS servers, and I nearly went mad trying to solve a simple permissions issue. Everything "should" have worked, I even tested it in the Effective Permissions dialog. Still nothing. Linux? ~$ sudo chmod 744 mydir. Done. I also like scripting, and I could spend all day in the shell no problem. Where did you get the idea to the contrary?

Comment Re:Get a job (Score 1) 298

OP here:

This is not helpful at all.

A "freelance IT consultant" is a guy who plays WoW 24/7 with breaks to answer the door for pizza deliveries or go fix friend's computers in exchange for chee-toes.

I've never played WoW, and I've run a successful, licensed consulting business for several years now, with many returning clients.

You want to be a Linux professional, but don't know what you want to do with it. That's strange to me. That's like saying "I want to use a screwdriver for a living, but don't know what I want to do with it."

Why is that strange? Your analogy is grossly oversimplified. I'm narrowing my career path to a particular set of tools and software that I'm beginning to understand and respect. It's like I'm saying, "I know want to be a lawyer, I'm just not sure if I want to do case law, patent law, family law or some other kind of law." Really, is that so absurd?

Get a job. Somewhere. Anywhere.

Of course, how could I be so obtuse? I'll just get a job anywhere, why did I even ask a question in the first place?

Comment Re:Knife professional (Score 1) 298

OP here:

Fair enough, I appreciate your perspective, but it doesn't answer the most fundamental question I asked: how did you become a paid professional who uses Linux regularly (if you do)?

To use your analogy, I want to become a very talented chef, one that involves mastering knife handling. I'm already pretty good at knife handling, but I want to get better. I enjoy cooking so much, that I want to make a career out of it instead of just goofing off. The trouble is, I don't know how to get hired as a chef if all the restaurants want 3+ years experience as a very talented chef. I also know that whatever chef I end up as, I want to handle knives in the process. I don't want to be a pastry chef or sous chef; I want to cut and chop and pare with masterful precision as some kind of chef that uses knives (I want to use Linux, no matter what profession I take on; the analogy has somewhat broken down here, but you get the idea, I hope).

I'm looking for a "bus boy" type position, where I can be exposed to the kinds of technology I want to master, and work my way up the food chain. I just don't know how to do that.


Submission + - Ask Slashdot: How did you become a Linux professional?

ternarybit writes: "By 'Linux professional,' I mean anyone in a paid IT position who uses or administers Linux systems on a daily basis.

Over the past five years, I've developed an affection for Linux, and use it every day as a freelance IT consultant. I've built a breadth of somewhat intermediate skills, using several distros for everything from everyday desktop use, to building servers from scratch, to performing data recovery. I'm interested in taking my skills to the next level—and making a career out of it—but I'm not sure how best to appeal to prospective employers, or even what to specialize in (I refuse to believe the only option is "sysadmin," though I'm certainly not opposed to that).

Most specifically, I'm interested in what practical steps I can take to build meaningful skills that an employer can verify, and will find valuable. So, what do you do, and how did you get there? How did you conquer the catch-22 of needing experience to get the position that gives you the experience to get the position? Did you get certified, devour books and manpages, apprentice under an expert, some combination of the above, or something else entirely?"

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