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Quick Tip

Quick tips

Getting Steam to work in Manjaro Linux

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This is a quick tip to remind myself (and others) that even though Steam appears to be installed in Manjaro Linux, it won't open.

Running these commands fixes that issue:

find ~/.steam/root/ \( -name "libgcc_s.so*" -o -name "libstdc++.so*" -o -name "libxcb.so*" -o -name "libgpg-error.so*" \) -print -delete


find ~/.local/share/Steam/ \( -name "libgcc_s.so*" -o -name "libstdc++.so*" -o -name "libxcb.so*" -o -name "libgpg-error.so*" \) -print -delete

After that, start Steam and it should start updating and work :)

Installing a minimal GUI on a KVM server

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Recently I have found myself needing to install a very basic, light GUI on top of an otherwise blank Ubuntu Server system. This lead me to the following command, which will install the lightweight desktop environment LXDE along with the bare minimum that's needed to run it.

sudo apt install --no-install-recommends lubuntu-core

After that, we'll need a way to actually load the GUI so we need to install xinit. If you don't do this, when you type startx it will warn you to do this anyway.

sudo apt install xinit

Reboot and it will now show you the GUI login screen.

Logging in shows that there is a GUI and nothing else installed except a terminal, a file manager and desktop settings.

Setting up LetsEncrypt free SSL

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Today I will be installing and automatically renewing a free SSL certificate with LetsEncrypt.

Here's what I would do for the domain dah85.com

apt-get install nano python-letsencrypt-apache
letsencrypt --apache -d dah85.com
letsencrypt --apache --expand -d dah85.com -d www.dah85.com
letsencrypt renew
crontab -e
1 1 * * 1 /usr/bin/letsencrypt renew >> /var/log/letsencrypt-renewal.log

Done :)

This also sets up SSL in Apache for things like nextCloud if it's not already set up.

EDIT 0: If it complains that letsencrypt does not exist when installing, try installing python-certbot-apache instead. I found this happens in Ubuntu 17.04.

EDIT 1: Someone kindly pointed out that www.dah85.com didn't work, so I added the command "letsencrypt --apache --expand -d dah85.com -d www.dah85.com" after it and that fixed it :) Thanks Chris!


Benchmarking a Linux machine

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When I'm playing with a new VPS, the first thing I like to do is run a benchmark to see if I've got a good deal.

Running this in a terminal will start the benchmark (only need to install time and bzip2 once)

apt-get install time bzip2
bash <(wget --no-check-certificate -O - https://raw.github.com/mgutz/vpsbench/master/vpsbench)

You'll get an output similar to this

CPU model:  Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2609 v3 @ 1.90GHz
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  1897.804 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 1024 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB
System uptime:   6 min,       
I/O speed:  58.2 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 6.76s
Download 100MB file: 34.2MB/s

Just got this new toy, off to play with it ;)


Setting up UFW for the first time

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Securing a Linux machine is always a good idea, and here's the simplest way to do it.

First, install ufw and check the status. It should be disabled by default.

apt-get install ufw
ufw status

Second, we will enable the default rules which will be to block all incoming and allow all outgoing.

ufw default deny incoming
ufw default allow outgoing

Now for specific ports to open. Here I will allow SSH (22), HTTP (80) and HTTPS (443), webmin (10000) and seafile (8000)

ufw allow ssh
ufw allow 80/tcp
ufw allow 443/tcp
ufw allow 8000/tcp
ufw allow 10000/tcp

Now we enable it, and then check the status.

ufw enable
ufw status

To disable it.

ufw disable

To reset back to default

ufw reset

And that's it, all incoming traffic is blocked except what has been explicitly allowed, and all outgoing traffic is allowed.


Setting up virtual hosts in Apache

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This is the first in a series of quick tips that I will write up. These mainly serve to refresh my memory when I do the same thing a few times but can't quite remember the exact thing to do.

Today, I set up 2 different virtual hosts in apache:

host1.dah85.com host2.dah85.com

To accomplish this, I first created A entries for those hosts and pointed them to the IP of the web server, which in this case is a VPS for testing with.

Once that's been done, we just need to create the directories that the sites will live in, and then set up the configs.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install apache2
sudo mkdir /var/www/host1.dah85.com/public_html
sudo mkdir /var/www/host2.dah85.com/public_html
sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www
sudo chown -R www-data /var/www
sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/host1.dah85.com.conf
sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/host2.dah85.com.conf

Contents of host1.dah85.com.conf

<VirtualHost *:80>
    ServerAdmin [email protected]
    ServerName host1.dah85.com
    DocumentRoot /var/www/host1.dah85.com/public_html
    ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/error.log
    CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/access.log combined

And host2.dah85.com.conf

<VirtualHost *:80>
    ServerAdmin [email protected]
    ServerName host2.dah85.com
    DocumentRoot /var/www/host2.dah85.com/public_html
    ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/error.log
    CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/access.log combined

Then we enable the configs and restart Apache

sudo a2ensite host1.dah85.com.conf
sudo a2ensite host2.dah85.com.conf
sudo service apache2 restart

And that should be it for setting it up. Assuming you have something in each public_html directory, it should be working.