Gentoo: IPSec, L2TP VPN for iOS

There are thousands of guides out there on this subject, however I still struggled to set up an IPSEC VPN at first. This is a HOWTO for my own benefit – maybe someone else will use it too. I struggled because most of the guides involved setting up the VPN on a NAT’d host and connecting to the VPN inside the network. I didn’t do that on my linode, which has a static public IP.

Linode don't use barriers and ext-4

On my Linode running Gentoo Linux, I converted to ext4 some time ago and didn’t have any issues until now for some reason, mostly because I don’t reboot that often to notice. The symptoms are : Every reboot, you will see: EXT4-fs error (device xvda): ext4_journal_start_sb:296: Detected aborted journal<br /> EXT4-fs (xvda): Remounting filesystem read-only<br /> and a subsequent reboot fixes this by a forced run of fsck. Now that is an annoying one, every other reboot results in a crippled system and otherwise a fsck “fixes” it and you have no issues.

Linode: Migrating from IPv6 tunnel to native IPv6

A few days ago, announced native IPv6 roll out in their datacenters. Now, while I haven’t wrote about Linode in the past 6 months, I am still a happy customer. I am documenting the steps I took to migrate away from my tunnel. Set the TTL low on any DNS addresses that you will be changing. Ideally, do this a fair amount ahead of time. Send in a support ticket to get your /64 allocated.

Another reason to love

It should be no secret that this site and my other co-location needs are hosted at, for which I am a happy customer running Gentoo Linux. The reason for this post is that after an announcement today. All I had to do was reboot and then I received a 42% RAM increase. Yay. Thanks Linode, you are exceeding your competition! (Shameless plug for my [referral code][4] ) [4]:

Gentoo: static IPv4 & IPv6 ( tunnel)

For some reason, (my review) sets up their hosts to use dhcpd to grab the static IPv4 address on boot. This is in contrast to Host Virtual which uses the “Gentoo-way” to set static addresses. Now, there isn’t anything exactly wrong with using dhcpd on hosts with static addresses, actually, it may be simpler (and this is probably why they did it). However, I don’t like it for a few reasons, booting takes longer as it probes for IPs and it uses extra space for dhcpd binary on a low resource host – this includes extra time for updating.

Gentoo: Easy way to ditch your ISP nameserver

My linode is now my personal DNS resolver. I have officially ditched the ISP nameservers from this point forward now that I found unbound. Unbound is a lightweight, recursive resolver that is perfect for your LAN, co-located host, or even a single host. For your single host, emerge unbound, start the service, add to the first nameserver in /etc/resolv.conf. Unbound is setup (by default) to accept connections from localhost and refuse anything else.

About PHP_FCGI_MAX_REQUESTS and lighttpd

If you are running PHP on a limited-resource box, like a [VPS][1] then you may have seen your PHP pages randomly hang. I was able to trace this issue down because the PHP pages were hung up and the normal html pages were still being served. The problem was ‘solved’ when I restarted the web server. Some research later, and talking to Thilo (bangert), I found out about PHP_FCGI_MAX_REQUESTS. This is an environment variable that PHP respects, it basically tells how many requests to serve before respawning fcgi.

Gentoo on Acer Aspire1, including binpkgs

About a month ago, I installed Gentoo on the new-to-me Acer Aspire1. Installation went like anything else, it is just a normal x86 host after all. I don’t have everything on it working, because I don’t care. If you are looking for additional resources on getting the extras working, you may want to look here or here. The exciting part, that I got working and am ready to announce publicly, is my new atom-x86 binpkg repo.

Using sshfs with rtorrent

I had this genius idea about using sshfs with rtorrent. I thought that this use case would fit best in situations where you have good bandwidth but not much diskspace, such as my linode VPS (review). So, I’ll attempt to share my findings in this regard. If you are not familiar with rtorrent. You just need to know that it is a powerful, lightweight bittorrent client. It has a “watch” feature that watches a directory for new torrents, and obviously it can put downloaded files in a specified location.

Re-locating a linode installation

I recently had a bit of downtime on my linode. If you are wondering what a ‘linode’ is, check out my review or the website. And a big thank you to the folks that used my [referral code][3] when they got setup with linode themselves, you guys rock! So, about my recent 1⁄2 day downtime. It was self-inflicted because I wanted to move to a different datacenter. I moved my linode from Newark, NJ to Dallas, TX.

In depth Linode (VPS) review

This is a follow up to my initial linode post. Linode is a VPS provider. Linode stands for “Linux Node.” They offer relatively up to date initial Gentoo installations, among other distros. Overall Grade: 9.5⁄10 (because no one is ever perfect) Performance: This is probably the one area that everyone is concerned about from VPS providers. Linode provides linodes on pretty beefy hardware, 4 CPUs/host: %% cat /proc/cpuinfo |grep "model name"<br /> model name : Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU L5420 @ 2.50GHz With the Linode 360 plan, there are 40 guests on [each host][3].

New online home

If you have rss feeds to my old WP hosted blog, you may want to check them now and update if needed. That blog is closed for comments and I’ll rid google of it after it fully picks up this site. (Over 20,000 hits over there, thanks!) My new home is located on a Gentoo VPS from a provider called [Linode][3]. I have nothing but good things to say about Linode right now.