How to change hostname in Linux

I’m trying to build an Oracle RAC system at work to understand how it works better. As part of this I had to build three Linux systems. I built one, then cloned it (it was a virtual machine in VMware).

But having done that, it of course kept the hostname of the first machine. So I had to work out how to change that.
It turns out that is quite easy.

  • Edit file /etc/sysconfig/network using your favourite editor. In my case is nano.
  • Look for HOSTNAME=xxxxxx
  • Change the xxxx to the name you wish to set for your computer.
  • Save the file and restart the xinetd service. (eg. type service xinetd restart in your shell)
    Or simply reboot.

via How to change hostname in Linux – Techie Corner.

Dropbox Secure backup, sync and sharing made easy.

Image by DropBox
Image by DropBox

I was reading a post over on LifeHacker about some the Top 10 Ubuntu downloads and one of the applications they mentioned was Dropbox. I’d seen the name around before but hadn’t gotten around to trying it yet. So I decided it was time.

It’s pretty good. If you use Windows, Ubuntu or Red Hat you can install a client that basically creates a new folder in your Documents or My Documents folder. This folder is actually a kind of ‘web folder’. Anything you put in this folder, that appears to be on your desktop, is actually copied up to the web.

When you go to another computer that also has the dropbox client installed on it and setup with your account, will be able to access the same document(s). I found it sort of like using a USB key, but easier. I can simple copy a file into my dropbox at work and then access the same file at home, without having to search for the USB key in my bag, plug it in, navigate to the drive, etc, etc, etc.

If for some reason you can’t install the client, you can still access it via the web page, which also works well from an iPhone/iTouch for view the documents.

Have you tried DropBox? What do you think?

What’s all the fuss about Ubuntu ?

Image by yum9me
Image by yum9me

I see that Ubuntu has released a new version of its desktop edition. It seems to be a very popular distribution although I haven’t used it myself much, but I might give this new version a try for a while.

I’ve used Red Hat a little and I was running a Debian server at home for a while. I know its not linux at all, but I kind of prefer Solaris 10. It’s what I use at work and what I’m most used to (aside from Windows). Although I will grant you, some things are easier to do in Linux. But Solaris feels like a real operating system.

Juscelino over at J.M.A daily has an interesting post about the 5 reasons linux will never be better than windows. I agree with most of what he says. Although many things about using and installing Linux has become easier over the years, Microsoft has spent and will continue to spend millions and probably billions of dollars developing software that is easy to use for as many people as possible.

Debian Basic Gnome Install

If you would like setup Debian Linux with a very small installation then all you have to do is boot off the NETINST CD and choose NOT to use a mirror. This will install a very minimal system. Which not only takes up very little disk space but is a little more secure.

If you later want to install Gnome, but again only do a base install then all you need to do is run:
apt-get install x-window-system-core gdm gnome-core

This of course assumes the you have apt-get is installed and working.

This basic install doesn’t include a web browser so you might also want to do:
apt-get install firefox

Another Job

I happened to have a quick look at the jobs available at the Bureau of Meteorology yesterday. They have a “Systems and Database Specialist” position available starting at $80K.
Although I’m not going to apply for it, it has given me some ideas on how/where to improve my skills.
  • Database Tuning
  • mySQL
  • Linux
  • AIX (not sure how I’m going to do this)
  • Postgres (not even sure what this is !)

Using Debian AutoInstall

Debian has a neat auto install function that allows you to automate the installation of a debian box.
First you need to boot from the normal installation CD then, when it stops a the prompt enter something like:

auto url=

You will need to look on the Debian web site for information on how to configure the preseed.cfg file and you must have some sort of web server available to put the config file on.
You don’t have to put the Debian installation files there, only the config file.