Posts Tagged ‘Admins’

Saving multiple passwords in Linux with Revelation and Keepass2 – Keeping track of multiple passwords

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

System Administrators who use MS Windows to access multiple hosts in big companies like HP or IBM certainly use some kind of multiple password manager like PasswordSafe.

Keep multiple passwords safe in Microsoft Windows 7 passwordsafe with masterpassword

When number of passwords you have to keep in mind grows significantly using something like PasswordSafe becomes mandatory. Same is valid also for valid for system administrators who use GNU / Linux as a Desktop environment to administer thousands or hundreds of servers. I'm one of those admins who for years use Linux and until recently I kept logging all my passwords in separate directory full with text files created with vim (text editor). As the number of passwords and accesses to servers and web interfaces grow up dramatically as well as my requirement for security raised up I wanted to have my passwords secured being kept encrypted on my hard drive. For those who never use PasswordSafe the idea of program is to store all passwords you have in encrypted database which can be only opened through PasswordSafe by providing a master password.

passwordsafe on microsoft windows keep in order multiple passwords manager

Of course having one master password imposes other security risks as someone who knows the MasterPass can easily access all your passwords anyways for now such level of security perfectly fits my needs.

PasswordSafe is since recently Open Source so there is a Linux port, but the port is still in beta and though I tried hard to install it using provided .deb binaries as well as compile from source, I finally give it up. And decided to review what kind of password managers are available in Debian Wheezy's ports.

Here are those I found with;

apt-cache search password|grep -i manager

cpm – Curses based password manager using PGP-encryption
fpm2 – password manager with GTK+ 2.x GUI
gringotts – secure password and data storage manager
kedpm – KED Password Manager
kedpm-gtk – KED Password Manager
keepass2 – Password manager
keepassx – Cross Platform Password Manager
kwalletmanager – secure password wallet manager
password-gorilla – cross-platform password manager
revelation – GNOME2 Password manager

I didn't have the time to test each one of them, so I installed and checked only those which seemed more reliable, i.e.:
keepass2 and revelation

# apt-get install –yes fpm2 keepass2 revelation

Below is screenshot of each one of managers:

Revelation Linux Gnome graphic password manager program

Revelation – GNOME Password Manager

keepass2 Linux gui password manager screenshot Debian - graphic manager for storing passwords

kde password safe gui program Linux Debian screenshot

KDE QT Interface Linux GUI Password Manager (KeePass2)

With one of this tools admin's life is much easier as you don't have to get crazy and remember thousands of passwords.
Hope this helps some admin out there! Enjoy ! 🙂
 

Windows add to startUP / Make MS Windows XP / Vista / 7 and 8 to start program automatically on start-up

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

On Linux, it is quite easy to run programs on OS boot via /etc/rc.local.
For Linux admins like me who are not much into Windows, it is interesting How it is possible to make Application run on Windows boot?

Running Program auto on boot is precious, especially for running small custom written .BAT (batch scripts)
On Windows XP there is a Startup Folder. Anything placed in Startup folder launches whenever Windows start.

Windows XP open startup folder screenshot

  • Click on Start button -> All Programs, right mouse click on Startup folder -> Open.
  • Open Folder location that contains Program want to make start-up on Windows start.
  • Right-click Program and then click Create Shortcut. Newly created shortcut appears in same location as the original item.
  • Drag with Mouse new shortcut into the Startup folder.

Alternative way to reach Windows  Start-Up (on Windows XP) is via C:\Users\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs

Windows XP Start menu programs start up

To remove already, scheduled program to start, just remove it from Startup Folder or run in command prompt Start -> run (cmd.exe) ->

msconfig

And from StartUp tab, remove tick from Program you'd like to disable:

Alter Remove from Windows XP Startup Programs

On Windows Vista / 7 Add / Remove Program on Start-up is done also from:
Control Panel -> Program -> Change Startup Programs

Control Panel Programs Add / Remove Programs on Windows Vista / 7 Start-up

On Windows 8 to add / remove Programs to Startup (press Ctrl+C) in Run box that appears run:

%APPDATA%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

run command for start up program add Remove Microsoft Windows 8

Then just like on XP, create shortcut and Paste Shortcut linked to program to run on Win Start

That's all you have to do on Next Windows Startup-up Program will automatically run.
Following same logic it is possible to make Word DOC / .TXT / PDF / Mp3 / Movie run automatically on Windows boot. Enjoy 🙂

P.S. Dear Windows Admin Gurus, I'm sorry if this article was too boring, please accept my kind apologies if so:)

Linux: Configure Midnight Commander to use mcedit instead of nano or vi text editor

Friday, June 21st, 2013

reverting mc text editor to mcedit fix problem with mcedit not working in linux

I use Midnight Commander console file manager on any UNIX like servers, since my early days as system administrator. mc comes with its own text editor mcedit which is often very handy for reading config files or pieces of source code. Many times I had to modify files which were spitting errors which I couldn't track in VIM, jor or whatever text editor had on server at hand and after checking file with mcedit I caught my config or source code mistake. I guess many other admins has similar nice experiences with mcedit Internal file editor of GNU Midnight Commander. Nowadays, I install mostly Debian Linux on new configured servers and using mc to navigate in file system is very useful. I prefer mc to open files for edit with F4 (Edit – kbd shortcut) with its default mcedit, however for some reasons most of Debian / Ubuntu and other Linuxes, nowadays has set global environment text editor to nano. I totally dislike this text editor and like changing mc always to use mcedit. This is done straight from MC menus by:

Pressing F9 -> Going to Options -> Configuration -> (Setting mark on) -> Use Inernal Edit
/code>

unix terminal file manager midnight commander configuration menu screenshot

linux console file manager midnight commander use internal edit menu unchecked screenshot

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How to list and delete mail queue on Qmail / Sendmail / Postfix and Exim SMTP server

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

How to list and manage delete Qmail Postfix Sendmail Exim mail SMTP queue View-and delete manage Linux and FreeBSD mail server queue

I have to administrate different kind of mail servers. Different clients has different requirements so in daily job I had to take care for all major mail server platforms our there. Often I have to fix problems with mail servers one very useful thing is to check the mail server queue to see what is there holding to be delivered. Often problems with busy mail servers are rooted in overfilled queues with undelivered mails so checking the queue on Postfix / Exim / Sendmail and Qmail is among the first thing to do to diagnose a problem with improperly working SMTP. In this little article I will show how one can check what is in the queue even if he didn't have the technical background on how each of those mail delivery agents works.

1. How to check and manage queue of Qmail Mail Server

Essential info on how many messages are in the queue and to list this messages in Qmail are done with qmail-qstat and qmail-qread.

a) Checking how many messages are in Qmail queue undelivered to remote SMTPs

root@mail:~# qmail-qstat
messages in queue: 1
messages in queue but not yet preprocessed: 0

b) Listing undelivered e-mails held in Qmail queue

root@mail:~# qmail-qread
26 Mar 2013 01:33:07 GMT  #9609259  748  <info@pomoriemonastery.org>
    remote    bpfejd@gprizm.com
root@mail:~#

One other useful command in dealing with Qmail queue is qmail-qread type it and see for yourself what it does.
c) Flushing qmail queue

Use a tiny shell script ( flush_qmail_queue.sh ), deleting all files in /var/qmail/queue/mess – directory where qmail stores undelivered messages in queue.

# ./flush_qmail_queue.sh

Though above script should be working in some cases, where there are permission problems with Queue or some other mess it is better to use more sophisticated Qmail Queue cleaining tool Qmail MailRemove. To use its necessary to have a working version of Python programming language. Once downloaded Qmail MailRemove, mkdir  /var/qmail/queue/filter (a directory needed for MailRemove to work). Then run script

# ./mailRemove.py email_to_remove

Other variant to clean messed qmail queue is to use qmailHandle.

2. How to check and delete mails from queue in Postfix SMTP

On postfix queue is checked using both postqueue command which is postfix's specific tool for viewing the queue or the standard sendmail mailq. mailq is actually – Postfix to sendmail compitability interface, i.e. this command is not the native way to view queue in Postfix but is just a wrapper binary which invokes postqueue with an option to visualize what is in queue for SMTP admins accustomed to work with sendmail.

a) Checking list of undelivered e-mails

Below is an examples:

mail:~# mailq

-Queue ID- –Size– —-Arrival Time—- -Sender/Recipient——-
4A22BBE1A3*     657 Mon Apr  1 18:46:01  www-data@debian.uk2net.com
                                         csacpabb@nasvalke.com

25824BE18B*     660 Thu Mar 28 18:15:03  www-data@debian.uk2net.com
                                         Aliermarl@fmailxc.com.com

D2AA7BE1BF      652 Sun Mar 31 04:30:21  www-data@debian.uk2net.com
(host mail.drugsellr.com[37.1.218.81] refused to talk to me: 421 Too many concurrent SMTP connections; please try again later.)
                                         Erudge@drugsellr.com

mail:~# postfix -p
-Queue ID- –Size– —-Arrival Time—- -Sender/Recipient——-
36911BE18D*     662 Mon Mar 25 11:08:01  www-data@debian.uk2net.com
                                         lutuaslenty@fmailxc.com.com

C2439BE207*     662 Fri Mar 22 14:59:45  www-data@debian.uk2net.com
                                         Gavepolla@fmailxc.com.com

4A22BBE1A3*     657 Mon Apr  1 18:46:01  www-data@debian.uk2net.com
                                         csacpabb@nasvalke.com

b) Checking the  number of undelivered mails living in Postfix queue

postfix:~#  postqueue -p|wc -l
433

c) Viewing content of specific mail held in Postfix queue

Whether you need to check content of specific undelivered mail kept in queue you should do it by its ID, to view last mail from earlier postfix -p example:

postfix:~# postcat -q 4A22BBE1A3

*** ENVELOPE RECORDS deferred/A/4A22BBE1A3 ***
message_size:             656             187               1               0             656
message_arrival_time: Tue Apr  2 14:25:34 2013
create_time: Tue Apr  2 14:25:35 2013
named_attribute: rewrite_context=local
sender_fullname: www-data
sender: www-data@debian.uk2net.com
*** MESSAGE CONTENTS deferred/A/4A22BBE1A3 ***
Received: by postfix (Postfix, from userid 33)
        id AA379BE07A; Tue,  2 Apr 2013 14:25:34 +0100 (BST)
To: hawtiene@drugsellr.com
Subject: =?UTF8?B?QWNjb3VudCBpbmZvcm1hdGlvbiBmb3IgU09DQ0VSRkFNRQ==?=
X-PHP-Originating-Script: 1000:register_login_functions.php
From: SOCCERFAME <no-reply@mail.host.com>
Content-type:text/plain; charset=UTF8
Message-Id: <20130402132535.AA379BE07A@mail.host.com>
Date: Tue,  2 Apr 2013 14:25:34 +0100 (BST)

Please keep that email. It contains your username and password for postfix.
—————————-
nick : hawtiene
pass : 1v7Upjw3nT
—————————-

*** HEADER EXTRACTED deferred/A/4A22BBE1A3 ***
original_recipient: hawtiene@drugsellr.com
recipient: hawtiene@drugsellr.com
*** MESSAGE FILE END deferred/A/4A22BBE1A3 ***

d) Deleting mails in Postfix queue

To delete all mails in Postfix queue run:

postfix:~# postsuper -d ALL

If Postfix cannot deliver a message to a recipient it is placed in the deferred queue.  The queue manager will scan the deferred queue to see it if can place mail back into the active queue.  How often this scan occurs is determined by the queue_run_delay.
The queue_run_delay is by default 300s or 300 seconds. If you have a very busy mail server you may see a large deferred queue.
To delete all mails in deferred queue.

postfix:~# postsuper -d ALL deferred

3. How to check mail queue of Exim mail server

Viewing number of messages and list of undelivered messages in Exim queue is done using exim command by specifying arguments.

a) Checking the list of undelivered mails kept undelivered in Exim SMTP Queue

 

root@iqtestfb:/etc/exim4# exim -bp

4d 416 1UI1fS-00021I-1s <root@ETC_MAILNAME> *** frozen *** hipo@pc-freak.net 4d 746 1UI1gc-00023T-0S <root@ETC_MAILNAME> *** frozen *** root@ETC_MAILNAME 4d 752 1UI1lR-0003H0-89 <root@ETC_MAILNAME> *** frozen *** root@ETC_MAILNAME 4d 894 1UI1lR-0003H5-I6 <www-data@ETC_MAILNAME> *** frozen *** www-data@ETC_MAILNAME

b) Counting number of Exim undelivered messages kept in Mail Queue
exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -bpc 2063 c) Getting a summary of all messages in Exim Queue (Count, Volume, Oldest, Newest, Destination Domain)
exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -bp| exiqsumm

Count Volume Oldest Newest Domain —– —— —— —— —— 1 862 22h 22h 126.com 2 1751 12h 5h 163.com 21 3111KB 4d 3h abv.bg 2 766KB 42h 7h alice.it 1 383KB 7h 7h aol.com 1 383KB 4d 4d att.net 1 383KB 3d 3d beotel.net 2 766KB 20h 19h bih.net.ba 1685 3291KB 4d 1m etc_mailname 1 383KB 70h 70h facebook.com 1 383KB 66h 66h gaaa 81 22MB 4d 15m gmail.com 1 564 3d 3d gmaill.com 1 383KB 3d 3d googlemail.com 1 383KB 64h 64h hotmai.rs 33 10MB 4d 2h hotmail.com 25 9193KB 4d 79m hotmail.it 1 383KB 4d 4d hotmailcom 2 1128 24h 20h icloud.com 2 766KB 67h 67h inwind.it 11 3831KB 3d 7h libero.it 1 383KB 20h 20h live.co.uk 3 767KB 37h 3h live.com 6 1916KB 67h 45h live.it 1 552 28h 28h live.no 1 383KB 67h 67h llle.it 1 383KB 67h 67h lllle.it 1 383KB 33m 33m luigimori.it 2 389KB 56h 4h mail.bg 1 383KB 66h 66h mailmetrash.com 1 383KB 39h 39h malltron.it 1 562 7h 7h me.com 1 383KB 4d 4d msn.com 2 1116 49h 47h net.hr 1 383KB 28h 28h orion.rs 1 383KB 3d 3d paskaa.com 75 31KB 4d 3d pc-freak.net 1 572 3d 3d prismamedia.ro 1 383KB 71h 71h rediffmail.com 1 383KB 28h 28h seznam.cz 1 383KB 14m 14m siol.net 36 11KB 4d 3d sms.mtel.net 1 557 53h 53h t-com.hr 1 383KB 23h 23h tecnobagno.191.it 1 383KB 4d 4d teol.net 2 766KB 67h 44h virgilio.it 1 383KB 42h 42h windwslive.com 1 549 3d 3d yahoo 43 9213KB 4d 74m yahoo.com 2 766KB 70h 46h yahoo.it 1 383KB 71h 71h ymail.com ————————————————————— 2068 76MB 4d 1m TOTAL

 

c)  List Exim queued messages sorted by recipient address and sender address

  To list e-mails in queue sorted by recipient address

exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -bpr|grep -Eo "^\s*[^ ]*@[^ ]*$" |sort | uniq -c

To List queued messages grouped by address of sender
exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -bpr | grep -Eo "<[^ ]*@[^ ]*>" | sort | uniq -c  

d) Forcing Exim  to attempt re-send e-mails kept inside
queue

As Exim is relatively new SMTP its authors thought deeply before writting it and included options to do queue e-mail sent whether server is not under extremely high loads as well as send, regardless of load. Make Exim start sending queue e-mails if server is not overloaded (no extra-high server load)
exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -q -v

  To make Exim force a queue run regardless of system load exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -qf -v  

To make Exim deliver only e-mails sent from server to server (usually e-mails from local server monitoring software and log reports)
exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -ql -v

e) Deleting e-mails from Exim mail queue

To Remove a message from queue identify by ID

exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -Mrm <message-id>     Force Exim delivery of a message regardless of Frozen status

exim-smtp:/etc/exim4# exim -M<message-id >  

f) Removing Exim mails older than certain seconds or hours To remove all mails older than 12hrs (43000 seconds) exim-smtp:~# exiqgrep -o 43000 -i | xargs exim -Mrm

Deleting all frozen mails from queue is done with:

exim-smtp:~# exiqgrep -z -i | xargs exim -Mrm  

Removing all e-mails belonging to particular sender

exim-smtp:~# exiqgrep -i -f user@domain.com | xargs exim -Mrm

  Removing all mails from a sender that are older than 12hrs

exim-smtp:~# exiqgrep -o 43000 -i -f user@domain.com | xargs exim -Mrm
 

g) Flushing Exim mail queue
Use

exim-smtp:~# runq
  or

exim-smtp:~# exim -q

4. How to view and manage sendmail SMTP queue

a) Listing all e-mails stored in Sendmail queue

To list the mail queue in sendmail

sendmail:~# sendmail -bp
/var/spool/mqueue is empty
        Total requests: 0

or

sendmail:~# mailq
 

/var/spool/mqueue (3 requests) —–Q-ID—– –Size– —–Q-Time—– ————Sender/Recipient———– m9TMLQHG012749 1103 Thu Oct 30 11:21 <apache@localhost.localdomain> (host map: lookup (electrictoolbox.com): deferred) <test@electrictoolbox.com> m9TMLRB9012751 37113 Thu Oct 30 11:21 <apache@localhost.localdomain> (host map: lookup (electrictoolbox.com): deferred) <test@electrictoolbox.com> m9TMLPcg012747 240451 Thu Oct 30 11:21 <apache@localhost.localdomain> (host map: lookup (electrictoolbox.com): deferred) <test@electrictoolbox.com> Total requests: 3

b) Checking queue for specific mail sender or recipient

sendmail:~# mailq | grep -i email@domain-name.com -A 2 -B 2
....

c) Removing all e-mails from Sendmail queue

To delete everything stored in Sendmail queue delete files from directory where sendmail stores still undelivered mails. In sendmail this is /var/spool/mqueue and /var/mqueue

sendmail:~# rm /var/spool/mqueue/*.*
sendmail:~# rm /var/mqueue/*.*

Deleting all pending mails from queue

To remove / delete e-mails originating from certain domain / user or recipient

sendmail:~# sendmail -qS -v domain-name.com

To delete e-mail from certain user or recipieint

sendmail:~# sendmail -qR -v yahoo.co.uk

 

Happy System Administrator Day – It’s 31 of July again ;)

Friday, July 29th, 2011

Happy System Administrator’s Day to all Sys Admins, who read my blog regularly! 😉

There are some many mafias around the world, Maybe one day there should be a sysadmin mafia 😉
Cheers! 😉