Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Adding user to Sudoers file

I remember my first time exploring Linux distros outside the safety of Ubuntu. One of the very first things that confused me was when I tried to use the sudo command I was greeted with the message:
kevie is not in the sudoers file. This incident will be reported.
In the community we are often guilty of assuming things we do regularly are known to all users, but we all lacked knowledgable at one time. Well the first thing that is important is how to add the user to the sudoers file.

1. open the terminal

2. type su (then enter your password)

3. type visudo

this will then bring up a screen full of characters, you can scroll around, but you'll notice that we can't start typing right away, we are in the editor called vi

4. scroll down to the line root ALL=(ALL) ALL

5. press i to start editing the file

6. below the line in step 4 enter {your user name} ALL=(ALL) ALL

7. stop editing by pressing the escape(esc) key

8. assuming everything went alright* enter :wq to save and exit the file

*if you accidentally changed something you shouldn't have :q! will exit without saving the file. If you need to do this type the command and go back to step 3.

You are now in the sudoers file and can use sudo to gain superuser privileges. But remember:
With great power comes great responsibility
The second question you'll be asking yourself is "Who does the first 'illegal' use of sudo get reported to?" Well the following illustration should help:

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Not so much a blog post

This isn't much of a proper blog post, more of free promotion really. I found this on another site and felt it just had to be shared. Anybody that knows me, knows I'm not a fan of facebook, so this was too good not to share. A great anti-facebook graphics.

You can also download a variety of stickers/buttons/banners for your site, these are all released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.

SVG available here

SVG available here

Monday, 13 December 2010

Exporting Diaspora posts to

With the recent release of the open source social site Diaspora, a flock of us from have gladly accepted invitations. Most Linux users are more than happy to pilot software at an early stage.

On the initial setup, as a lover of open source, I felt let down by the 'open source equivalent of Facebook.' After confirming email addresses and some basic information, the setup wizard asks if you would like to connect to other sites. To my horror the options are 1) Facebook 2) Twitter 3) must be, right? Well that's the problem there's only two options, but never fear fellow denters there is a simple way to overcome this problem.

In the spirit of this blog, I always try to keep everything open source, I'm going to link the accounts using a free, open source project by Michele Azzolari or @macno on Whilst is a free service; you need an invite, ask @macno on who, for those who don't know him, is very obliging and helpful.

Once you have received your invitation log in to your new account at We'll do the destination first, trust me it's easier. I'll now break this into steps to make it easier to follow.

Before we can setup properly, we need the feed for your Diaspora posts.

1. On Diaspora, when you are about to make a post, you should see a text box similar to the one shown below:

Click on the orange RSS icon.

2. This will take you to a new page showing all your posts, take a note of the address:

In this example my address is https://joindiaspora/public/kevie
*if there is .atom at the end of the address then leave it off

3. Go to the website.

4. On the welcome screen you'll see the number of feeds and destinations you currently have setup. Click on Add/Edit beside destinations, this will lead you to a new screen.

5. Click on Add new destination

6. Click on Identica

7. This will take you to, log in (if necessary) and the site will display the message:

Click on Allow

8. Now go back to, this time click on Add/Edit beside feeds

9. In the first box add the address of your Diaspora feed that we noted in step 2. In the second box give this setup a name (I have imaginatively called it 'diaspora')

10. Now it's time to choose what you wish to export, for text only enter %t, if you want a link to be posted then add %u (only needed if your posts exceed the 140 character limit)

11. On the next screen, put a tick beside your username and click on Save

12. Now log out of and your done, your posts from Diaspora will be updated on your timeline.

Please note that when you post on Diaspora you must tick the box make public for it to be posted to