Posts Tagged ‘interface’

Mount remote Linux SSHFS Filesystem harddisk on Windows Explorer SWISH SSHFS file mounter and a short evaluation on what is available to copy files to SSHFS from Windows PC

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

swish-mount-and-copy-files-from-windows-to-linux-via-sshfs-mount

I'm forced to use Windows on my workbook and I found it really irritating, that I can't easily share files in a DropBox, Google Drive, MS OneDrive, Amazon Storage or other cloud-storage free remote service. etc.
I don't want to use DropBox like non self-hosted Data storage because I want to keep my data private and therefore the only and best option for me was to make possible share my Linux harddisk storage
dir remotely to the Windows notebook.

I didn't wanted to setup some complex environment such as Samba Share Server (which used to be often a common option to share file from Linux server to Windows), neither wanted to bother with  installing FTP service and bother with FTP clients, or configuring some other complex stuff such as WebDav – which BTW is an accepted and heavily used solution across corporate clients to access read / write files on a remote Linux servers.
Hence, I made a quick research what else besides could be used to easily share files and data from Windows PC / notebook to a home brew or professional hosting Linux server.

It turned out, there are few of softwares that gives a similar possibility for a home lan small network Linux / Windows hybrid network users such, here is few of the many:

  • SyncThingSyncthing is an open-source file synchronization client/server application, written in Go, implementing its own, equally free Block Exchange Protocol. The source code's content-management repository is hosted on GitHub

     

     

     

     

     

    syncthing-logo

  • OwnCloud – ownCloud provides universal access to your files via the web, your computer or your mobile devices

     

     

     

     

     

    owncloud-logo

  • Seafile – Seafile is a file hosting software system. Files are stored on a central server and can be synchronized with personal computers and mobile devices via the Seafile client. Files can also be accessed via the server's web interface


seafile-client-in-browser

I've checked all of them and give a quick try of Syncthing which is really easy to start, just download the binary launch it and configure it under https://Localhost:8385 URL from a browser on the Linux server.
Syncthing seemed to be nice and easy to configure solution to be able to Sync files between Server A (Windows) and Server B(Linux) and guess many would enjoy it, if you want to give it a try you can follow this short install syncthing article.
However what I didsliked in both SyncThing and OwnCloud and Seafile and all of the other Sync file solutions was, they only supported synchronization via web and didn't seemed to have a Windows Explorer integration and did required
the server to run more services, posing another security hole in the system as such third party softwares are not easily to update and maintain.

Because of that finally after rethinking about some other ways to copy files to a locally mounted Sync directory from the Linux server, I've decided to give SSHFS a try. Mounting SSHFS between two Linux / UNIX hosts is
quite easy task with SSHFS tool

In Windows however the only way I know to transfer files to Linux via SSHFS was with WinSCP client and other SCP clients as well as the experimental:

As well as few others such as ExpandDrive, Netdrive, Dokan SSHFS (mirrored for download here)
I should say that I first decided to try copying few dozen of Gigabyte movies, text, books etc. using WinSCP direct connection, but after getting a couple of timeouts I was tired of WinSCP and decided to look for better way to copy to remote Linux SSHFS.
However the best solution I found after a bit of extensive turned to be:

SWISH – Easy SFTP for Windows

Swish is very straight forward to configure compared to all of them you download the .exe which as of time of writting is at version 0.8.0 install on the PC and right in My Computer you will get a New Device called Swish next to your local and remote drives C:/ D:/ , USBs etc.

swish-new-device-to-appear-in-my-computer-to-mount-sshfs

As you see in below screenshot two new non-standard buttons will Appear in Windows Explorer that lets you configure SWISH

windows-mount-sshfs-swish-add-sftp-connection-button-screenshot

Next and final step before you have the SSHFS remote Linux filesystem visible on Windows Xp / 7 / 8 / 10 is to fill in remote Linux hostname address (or even better fill in IP to get rid of possible DNS issues), UserName (UserID) and Direcory to mount.

swish-new-fill-in-dialog-to-make-new-linux-sshfs-mount-directory-possible-on-windows

Then you will see the SSHFS moutned:

swish-sshfs-mounted-on-windows

You will be asked to accept the SSH host-key as it used to be unknown so far

swish-mount-sshfs-partition-on-windows-from-remote-linux-accept-key

That's it now you will see straight into Windows Explorer the remote Linux SSHFS mounted:

remote-sshfs-linux-filesystem-mounted-in-windows-explorer-with-swish

Once setupped a Swish connection to copy files directly to it you can use the Send to Embedded Windows dialog, as in below screenshot

swish-send-to-files-windows-screenshot

The only 3 problem with SWISH are:

1. It doesn't support Save password, so on every Windows PC reboot when you want to connect to remote Linux SSHFS, you will have to retype remote login user pass.
Fron security stand point this is not such a bad thing, but it is a bit irritating to everytime type the password without an option to save permanently.
The good thing here is you can use Launch Key Agent
as visible in above screenshot and set in Putty Key Agent your remote host SSH key so the passwordless login will work without any authentication at
all however, this might open a security hole if your Win PC gets infected by virus, which might delete something on remote mounted SSHFS filesystem so I personally prefer to retype password on every boot.

2. it is a bit slow so if you're planning to Transfer large amounts of Data as hundreds of megabytes, expect a very slow transfer rate, even in a Local  10Mbit Network to transfer 20 – 30 GB of data, it took me about 2-3 hours or so.
SWISH is not actively supported and it doesn't have new release since 20th of June 2013, but for the general work I need it is just perfect, as I don't tent to be Synchronizing Dozens of Gigabytes all the time between my notebook PC and the Linux server.

3. If you don't use the established mounted connection for a while or your computer goes to sleep mode after recovering your connection to remote Linux HDD if opened in Windows File Explorer will probably be dead and you will have to re-enable it.

For Mac OS X users who want to mount / attach remote directory from a Linux partitions should look in fuguA Mac OS X SFTP, SCP and SSH Frontend

I'll be glad to hear from people on other good ways to achieve same results as with SWISH but have a better copy speed while using SSHFS.

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Change Skype for Business UI to Lync – Skype for Business Lync Theme / Remove Skype for Business coloroful UI and Switch to Lync simple interface

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016

Revert-skype-for-business-Lync-User-Interface-change-skype-for-business-theme-skin

If you are working in a large corporation such as (HP or HPE – Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE is the new splitted company brand name for the Software and Servers division of ex-HP) / IBM / Dell or any other company with the size of top fortune companies and you Computer Domain admistrator has forced your work PC to already use Skype for Business instead of the good tested Lync Client along with the goodies and PROS of having the newer Skype for Business (S4B) as usual for old fashened users like me and the avarage employee the New S4B interface will turn into nightmare with all this circled names and more buttons and the annoying Skype Blue Theme.

For anyone who has even basic idea of design and aesthetics, I believe the default Theme of Skype For Business  will be evaluated as a serious "interface downgrade" compared to the simple looking Interface and White Skin of Lync Client.

With this said it will be logical for the end user like me to desire to customize a bit default S4B Skin to make it more elegant looking like Lync 2013 client but guess what there is a Surprise if you google around, Skype For Business just like the regular Skype client doesn't have integrated support for Skins / Themes.
To make the horror complete, many big corporations are choosing to migrate their Email infrastructure from the classical and well tested Windows Domain with Exchange Server to  Microsoft Office 365 (Cloud services),
which makes the dependency on M$ products even bigger and in the long run control and spying on people's email and information (people's data security even worsers) as you know how hackable Windows prooved to be over the years.


Well for those who remember the good old times of IRC (Internet Relay Chat) and ICQ (I seek you) 🙂 and even Jabber when chatting emerged and boomed into popularity all the chat clients nomatter whether it was a free software under GPL / BSD license or it was a Proprietary licensed software, there was always alternative on the Interface Outlook of the Chat clients and on practically all popular Chat / Audio / Video communication Standards / Protocols, there used to be some option for the users to use either a different client or to customize the outook of the program.

Well now the big surprise with Skype Protocol which was purchased by Microsoft some years ago back is this terrible already M$ program doesn't have any option for changing the Theme and even basic customization besides the ones provided by default by Microsoft. For my surprise such a trivial and everybody used program like Skype with perhaps already 1.5 or 2 Billion or even more users doesn't have even basic support for customization !!!
To make the Skype program use horror story even worser Microsoft does upgrade the Skype client agressively and for the last 3 or 4 years Skype is owned by Microsoft the interface gets changing slightly or even completely with every next release.

Now with latest Skype versions since a 1.5 year or so the agressiveness of the program even increased further as it wants you to automatically upgrade, every time you run Skype.
With this in mind and the fact, I have to spend about 8 to 10 years on the PC with Skype for Business switched on on my notebook with no option to use Lync for communication because of the Domain Exchange forcing the changes to all of the users within our EMEA.

So after some serious digging on the Internet, the only work around to change the Skype For Business Theme available by a couple of sources is to Revert Back the Skype User Interface to Lync 2013 Client by changing a value to the Windows registry and get back the good old elegant Lync interface instead of S4B.

The Windows registry value that needs to be changed is:

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\Lync]


The default value there is:
 

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\Lync]
"CanSharePptInCollab"=dword:00000001
"CanAppShareInCollab"=dword:00000001
"CanShareOneNoteInCollab"=dword:00000001
"EnableSkypeUI"=hex:01,00,00,00

 

The value has to be changed to:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\Lync]
"CanSharePptInCollab"=dword:00000001
"CanAppShareInCollab"=dword:00000001
"CanShareOneNoteInCollab"=dword:00000001
"EnableSkypeUI"=hex:00,00,00,00


restart_lync_screenshot-ms-windows

The value "EnableSkypeUI"=hex:01,00,00,00 – instructs so Skype for Business UI is used:
"EnableSkypeUI"=hex:00,00,00,00 – instructs S4B to revert back to Old Lync interface

For a little bit more on the value check out also articles – Alternate Between The Microsoft Lync and Skype for Business
and Managing the Skype Client UI in Skype for Business.

To modify about registry setting you will either have to manually run regedit from Start -> Run ->  cmd.exe or use Windows button + R and type inside run box:
 

regedit


Or even better just use and Run (Click over twice) on this skype.reg (download) sciprt which will modify registry

Because the Domain administrator has forced a policy to automatically offer Change of Lync Interface to Skype for Business on every notebook boot to disable EnableSkypeUI registry value and make Skype appear in the good old Lync UI, I've created also a tiny Batch script lync_ui.bat with following content:
 

cd \
cd \Users\georgi\scripts
 regedit /s skype.reg
exit


You can download lync_ui.bat from here

Note that both skype.reg and lync_ui.bat should be existing in my case in C:\Users\georgi\scipts , change this path to whatever your username is and create scripts folder in your User Home dir.
If unsure about the home directory name you can check it from command prompt with:
 

C:\Users\georgi> echo %HOMEPATH%
\Users\georgi


To make the lync_ui.bat (script invoking skype.reg)  be executed on every PC boot, you need to add it to:

Start -> All Programs -> StartUp

http://www.pc-freak.net/images/how-to-add-script-to-windows-startup-screenshto-microsoft-windows-7

Well this is it now you will have back the Lync UI, Enjoy! 🙂

 

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Remove URL from comments in WordPress Blogs and Websites to mitigate comment spam URLs in pages

Friday, February 20th, 2015

remove-comment-spam-url-field-wordpress-website-or-blog-working-how-to
If you're running a WordPress blog or Website where you have enabled comments for a page and your article or page is well indexing in Google (receives a lot of visit / reads ) daily, your site posts (comments) section is surely to quickly fill in with a lot of "Thank you" and non-sense Spam comments containing an ugly link to an external SPAM or Phishing website.

Such URL links with non-sense message is a favourite way for SPAMmers to raise their website incoming (other website) "InLinks" and through that increase current Search Engine position. 

We all know a lot of comments SPAM is generally handled well by Akismet but unfortunately still many of such spam comments fail to be identified as Spam  because spam Bots (text-generator algorithms) becomes more and more sophisticated with time, also you can never stop paid a real-persons Marketers to spam you with a smart crafted messages to increase their site's SEO ).
In all those cases Akismet WP (Anti-Spam) plugin – which btw is among the first "must have"  WP extensions to install on a new blog / website will be not enough ..

To fight with worsening SEO because of spam URLs and to keep your site's SEO better (having a lot of links pointing to reported spam sites will reduce your overall SEO Index Rate) many WordPress based bloggers, choose to not use default WordPress Comments capabilities – e.g. use exnternal commenting systems such as Disqus – (Web Community of Communities), IntenseDebate, LiveFyre, Vicomi

However as Disqus and other 3rd party commenting systems are proprietary software (you don't have access to comments data as comments are kept on proprietary platform and shown from there), I don't personally recommend (or use) those ones, yes Disqus, Google+, Facebook and other comment external sources can have a positive impact on your SEO but that's temporary event and on the long run I think it is more advantageous to have comments with yourself.
A small note for people using Disqos and Facebook as comment platforms – (just imagine if Disqos or Facebook bankrupts in future, where your comments will be? 🙂 )

So assuming that you're a novice blogger and I succeeded convincing you to stick to standard (embedded) WordPress Comment System once your site becomes famous you will start getting severe amount of comment spam. There is plenty of articles already written on how to remove URL comment form spam in WordPress but many of the guides online are old or obsolete so in this article I will do a short evaluation on few things I tried to remove comment spam and how I finally managed to disable URL link spam to appear on site.
 

1. Hide Comment Author Link (Hide-wp-comment-author-link)

This plugin is the best one I found and I started using it since yesterday, I warmly recommend this plugin because its very easy, Download, Unzip, Activate and there you're anything typed in URL field will no longer appear in Posts (note that the URL field will stay so if you want to keep track on person's input URL you can get still see it in Wp-Admin). I'm using default WordPress WRC (Kubrick), but I guess in most newer wordpress plugins is supposed to work. If you test it on another theme please drop a comment to inform whether works for you.  Hide Comment Author Link works on current latest Wordpress 4.1 websites.

A similar plugin to hide-wp-author-link that works and you can use is  Hide-n-Disable-comment-url-field, I tested this one but for some reason I couldn't make it work.

wordpress-remove-delete-hide-n-disable-url-comment-without-deleting-the-form-url-field-screenshot-reduce-comment-spam
Whatever I type in Website field in above form, this is wiped out of comment once submitted 🙂
 

2. Disable hide Comment URL (disable-hide-comment-url)

I've seen reports disable-hide-comment-url works on WordPress 3.9.1, but it didn't worked for me, also the plugin is old and seems no longer maintaned (its last update was 3.5 years ago), if it works for you please please drop in comment your WP version, on WP 4.1 it is not working.

disable-hide-comment-url-screenshot-plugin-to-disable-comment-url-spam-in-wordpress-sites
 


3. WordPress Anti-Spam plugin

WordPress Anti-Spam plugin is a very useful addition plugin to install next to Akismet. The plugin is great if you don't want to remove commenter URL to show in the post but want to cut a lot of the annoying Spam Robots crawling ur site.
 

Anti-spam plugin blocks spam in comments automatically, invisibly for users and for admins.

  • no captcha, because spam is not users' problem
  • no moderation queues, because spam is not administrators' problem
  • no options, because it is great to forget about spam completely

Plugin is easy to use: just install it and it just works.

Anti bot works fine on WP 4.1

4. Stop Spam Comments

Stop Spam Comments is:

  • Dead simple: no setup required, just activate it and enjoy your spam-free website.
  • Lightweight: no additional database queries, it doesn't add script files or other assets in your theme. This means your website performance will not be affected and your server will thank you.
  • Invisible by design: no captchas, no tricky questions or any other user interaction required at all.
     

Stop Spam Comments works fine on WP 4.1.

I've mentioned few of the plugins which can help you solve the problem, but as there are a lot of anti-spam URL plugins available for WP its up to you to test and see what fits you best. If you know or use some other method to protect yourself from Comment Url Spam to share it please.

Import thing to note is it usually a bad idea to mix up different anti-spam plugins so don't enable both Stop Spam Comments and WordPress Anti Spam plugin.

5. Comment Form Remove Url field Manually 

This (Liberian) South) African blog describes a way how to remove URL field URL manually

In short to Remove Url Comment Field manually either edit function.php (if you have Shell SSH access) or if not do it via Wp-Admin web interface:
 

WordPress admin page –> Appearance –> Editor


Paste at the end of file following PHP code:

 

add_filter('comment_form_default_fields', 'remove_url');
 function remove_url($fields)
 {
 if(isset($fields[‘url’]))
 unset($fields[‘url’]);
 return $fields;
 }


Now to make changes effect, Restart Apache / Nginx Webserver and clean any cache if you're using a plugin like W3 Total Cache plugin etc.

Other good posts describing some manual and embedded WordPress ways to reduce / stop comment spam is here and here, however as it comes to my blog, none of the described manual (code hack) ways I found worked on WordPress v. 4.1.
Thus I personally stuck to using Hide and Disable Comment URL plugin  to get rid of comment website URL.

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Manually deleting spam comments from WordPress blogs and websites to free disk space and optimize MySQL

Monday, November 24th, 2014

WordPress-delete_spam_comments_manually_with_sql_query_to-optimize_mysql-and-free-disk-space
If you're a web-hosting company or a web-development using WordPress to build multitudes of customer blogs or just an independent blogger or sys-admin with a task to optimize a server's MySQL allocated storage  / performance on triads of WordPress-es a a good tip that would help is to removing wp_comments marked as spam.

Even though sites might be protected of thousands of spam message daily caught by WP anti-spam plugin Akismet, spam caught messages aer forwarder by Akismet to WP's Spam filter and kept wp_comments table with comments_approved column  record 'spam'.

Therefore you will certainly gain of freeing disk space uselessly allocated by spam messages into current MySQL server storage dir (/var/lib/mysql   /usr/local/mysql/data – the directory where my.cnf tells the server to keep its binary data .MYI, .MYD, .frm files) as well as save a lot of disk space by excluding the useless spam messages from SQL daily backup archives.

Here is how to remove manually spam comments from a WordPress blog under database (wp_blog1);

mysql> use wp_blog1;
mysql> describe wp_comments;
+———————-+———————+——+—–+———————+—————-+
| Field | Type | Null | Key | Default | Extra |
+———————-+———————+——+—–+———————+—————-+
| comment_ID | bigint(20) unsigned | NO | PRI | NULL | auto_increment |
| comment_post_ID | bigint(20) unsigned | NO | MUL | 0 | |
| comment_author | tinytext | NO | | NULL | |
| comment_author_email | varchar(100) | NO | | | |
| comment_author_url | varchar(200) | NO | | | |
| comment_author_IP | varchar(100) | NO | | | |
| comment_date | datetime | NO | | 0000-00-00 00:00:00 | |
| comment_date_gmt | datetime | NO | MUL | 0000-00-00 00:00:00 | |
| comment_content | text | NO | | NULL | |
| comment_karma | int(11) | NO | | 0 | |
| comment_approved | varchar(20) | NO | MUL | 1 | |
| comment_agent | varchar(255) | NO | | | |
| comment_type | varchar(20) | NO | | | |
| comment_parent | bigint(20) unsigned | NO | MUL | 0 | |
| user_id | bigint(20) unsigned | NO | | 0 | |
+———————-+———————+——+—–+———————+—————-+


The most common and quick way useful for scripting (whether you have to do it for multiple blogs with separate dbs) is to delete all comments being filled as 'Spam'.

To delete all messages which were filled by Akismet's spam filter with high probabily being a spam issue from mysql cli interface:

DELETE FROM wp_comments WHERE comment_approved = 'spam';


For Unread (Unapproved) messages the value of comment_approved field are 0 or 1, 0 if the comment is Red and Approved and 1 if still it is to be marked as read (and not spam).
If a wordpress gets heavily hammered with mainly spam and the probability that unapproved message is different from spam is low and you want to delete any message waiting for approvel as not being spam from wordpress use following SQL query:

DELETE FROM wp_comments WHERE comment_approved = 0;

Another not very common you might want to do is delete only all apprved comments:

DELETE FROM wp_comments WHERE comment_approved = 1;

For old installed long time unmaintained blogs (with garbish content), it is very likely that 99% of the messages might be spam and in case if there are already >= 100 000 spam messages and you don't have the time to inspect 100 000 spam comments to get only some 1000 legitimate and you want to delete completely all wordpress comments for a blog in one SQL query use:

TRUNCATE wp_comments;

Another scenario if you know a blog has been maintained until certain date and comments were inspected and then it was left unmaintained for few years without any spam detect and clear plugin like Akismet, its worthy to delete all comments starting from the date wordpress site stopped to be maintained:

DELETE FROM wp_comments WHERE comment_date > '2008-11-20 05:00:10' AND comment_date <= '2014-11-24 00:30:00'

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Change Windows 8 Start menu look like in Windows 7 or How to get back good old start menu back in Win 8

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

Classic shell add Windows 8 classic start menu

Whether you just installed to try Win 8 or received an office work notebook configured to work with Microsoft Windows 8, you certainly are already annoyed by changed Mobile phone like interface. First time I saw Windows 8 interface I was in shock what kind of mess this interface is. I understand Microsoft's desire to make Windows Mobile ready,  but maybe it was wise idea to allow the user with option to revert back to old Windows XP / Vista /7 interface for the sake of some compitability and user friendliness. Even for young people who already worked with computers this "chopped" interface is surely horrible. I even can't imagine how hard it is for older people to get used to this weird interface.

Windows 8 terrible Graphic interface interface fake Start screenshot
Today in my work place, the husband of our Second Executive, brought to me a relatively new Sony VAIO notebook bought with pre-installed Win 8.
Just like any normal person, he was in shock with Windows 8 weird interface and he asked me to explain him the interface. Well I will immediately after someone explain me the interface 🙂
He so much didn't like Win 8 that he even asked to re-install computer with Windows 7. I'm a lazy person plus I like saving my time. So looked quickly online if it is possible to make Windows 8 interface with Start button similar to older Windows releases. Actually there are plenty of ways to do it via both, Free and paid Software.
I'm a Free Software supporter, so I didn't even considered checking non-free or freeware ones. And I sticked directly to Open Source – Classic Shell.

Windows classic shell start menu screenshot Windows 8

What Classic Shell does is it turns interface of Internet Explorer to look like IE 9, adds a Start Menu button With Programs etc. to left Win corner (of course it doesn't place Windows Start button as this one is patented and forbidden to use in Free Soft).

.

Here is main list of current Classic Shell  features:

  • Highly customizable start menu with multiple styles and skins
  • Start button for Windows 7 and Windows 8
  • Toolbar and status bar for Windows Explorer
  • Caption and status bar for Internet Explorer

Program is in very active development (last beta released is from 2 days ago) meaning it is very popular among Windows users. As of time of writting its stable release is at ver. 3.6.8. It has even translations in in 18 languages including (my native Bulgarian)

There are plenty of things to configure on how Classic Shell behaves;

Settings for classic start-menu windows 8

I was a little bit scared it might break up Win 8 first time I installed it, but installation went quite smoothly and even there was no need for restart for new Win start menu to appear.
Classic Shell, Search option works fine too and is quite fast (dunno if it is due to Windows indexing) or it use some custom acceleration. It has also a number of Skins to choose from to change appearance of Start Menu button.

To sum it up Classic Shell does well what it is meant for, I guess in any future Windows install it will be the first program to install and save myself those terrible Windows 8  UI!
 

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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

 

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How to completely disable Replication in MySQL server 5.1.61 on Debian GNU / Linux

Monday, July 16th, 2012

Replication_mysql_disable

Some time ago on one of the Database MySQL servers, I've configured replication as it was required to test somethings. Eventually it turned out replication will be not used (for some reason) it was too slow and not fitting our company needs hence we needed to disable it.

It seemed logical to me that, simply removing any replication related directives from my.cnf and a restart of the SQL server will be enough to turn replication off on the Debian Linux host. Therefore I proceeded removed all replication configs from /etc/my/my.cnf and issued MySQL restart i. e.:

sql-server:~# /etc/init.d/mysql restart
....

This however didn't turned off replication,as I thought and in phpmyadminweb frontend interface, replication was still appearing to be active in the replication tab.

Something was still making the SQL server still act as an Replication Slave Host, so after a bit of pondering and trying to remember, the exact steps I took to make the replication work on the host I remembered that actually I issued:

mysql> START SLAVE;

Onwards I run:

mysql> SHOW SLAVE STATUS;
....

and found in the database the server was still running in Slave Replication mode

Hence to turn off the db host run as a Slave, I had to issue in mysql cli:

mysql> STOP SLAVE;
Query OK, 0 rows affected, 1 warning (0.01 sec)
mysql> RESET SLAVE;
Query OK, 0 rows affected, 1 warning (0.01 sec)

Then after a reload of SQL server in memory, the host finally stopped working as a Slave Replication host, e.g.

sql-server:~# /etc/init.d/mysql restart
....

After the restart, to re-assure myself the SQL server is no more set to run as MySQL replication Slave host:

mysql> SHOW SLAVE STATUS;
Empty set (0.00 sec)

Cheers 😉

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Don’t revoke GoDaddy SSL certificate. (Expired) Revoked SSL is impossible to revert

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

godaddy_logo
One of our company SSL (https) Certificates recently expired so I needed to renew the SSL certificate.

I was in a hurry doing plenty of other stuffs so it seemed logical for me to Revoke the Certificate. I thought revoking the certificate will simply cancel it and afterwards, in Godaddy's SSL (Manager Certificates) interface the Revoked – Cancelled certificate will re-appear in the menu, ready to be generated in the same way as earlier I initially generated the Godaddy's bought SSL certificate

Hence I proceeded and used Revoke button:

Godaddy SSL certificate manager browser certificate Screenshot

Well guess what my calculations, were wrong.
 Revoking, just cancel it. The  revoked domain SSL certificate did not show up again in Godaddy's Cert Manager and I have no way from their interface to revert the changes.

To deal with the situation, I contacted Godaddy Support immediately with the following inquiry:
 

Other : Revoked SSL Certificate
Issue :
Hello we have revoked the SSL certificate for our domain our.domain-name.com.
 Can we revert back the certificate as it was.
If not how to generate a new key for our domain https://our.domain-name.com
Thanks in Advance.
Kindest Regards

"My-Company-name" Tech Support

In 5 hours time I received the following tech support answer:
 

Dear Tech Support,

Thank you for contacting Online Support. It is not possible to reinstate a canceled certificate. You will need to purchase a new certificate. I have requested that a refund be applied to your account. Once the credit appears in your account, please allow 5-7 business days to see the funds applied to the associated payment method. Thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter.

Please let us know if we can help you in any other way.

Sincerely,

Christian P.
Online Support Team
Customer Inquiry
Name : Cadia Tech Support
Domain Name : our.domain-name.com
ShopperID : xxxxxxxxx
Phone : xxxxxxxx
Shopper Validated : Yes
Browser : Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.1; en-US; rv:1.9.2.3) Gecko/20100401 Firefox/3.6.3

Apparently Godaddy, can work out a bit on their tech support answering time 5 hours for a simple reply is quite long.

Now taking in consideration, above reply from Godady, my only options are to either wait for 5 to 7 (business days) or buy a new credit for SSL certificate.

Buying a new credit will probably not happen as our company is experiencing some financial troubles because of the crisis. So I guess we will have to wait for this 7 days at worst. So again if you wonder to REVOKE or not an SSL certificate. Think again …

Just a small note to make here, that Godaddy has a very straight forward way to just renew an expered certificate, which I succesfully later have done for 4 domains. Well, if only I knew earlier what REVOKE SSL cert really does I wouldn't have ended in this mess …

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How to fix wrongly configured timezone in Debian GNU/Linux and Ubuntu

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

During the install of a new Debian GNU/Linux server I was in a real hurry, so I mistakenly choose a wrong timezone of US/Pacific

As a consequence the server date and time was incorrect and I had to fix that to adjust to the proper server location which of this case was:Europe/London

Here is the quick fix:

debian:~# dpkg-reconfigure tzdata

Next I choose my timezone from the ncurses interface navigating with arrow keys and used ntpdate to synchronize the time for the server like so:

debian:~# ntpdate time.nist.gov
3 Aug 16:02:26 ntpdate[26658]: adjust time server 192.43.244.18 offset 0.000802 sec

Done 😉

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How to block IP address with pf on FreeBSD, NetBSD and OpenBSD

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

Pf Firewall BSD logo

I’ve noticed some IPs which had a kind of too agressive behaviour towards my Apache webserver and thus decided to filter them out with the Firewall.
As the server is running FreeBSD and my firewall choise is bsd’s pf I added the following lines to my /etc/pf.conf to filter up the abiser IP:

table persist file "/etc/pf.blocked.ip.conf"
EXT_NIC="ml0" # interface connected to internet
block drop in log (all) quick on $EXT_NIC from to any
echo '123.123.123.123' >> /etc/pf.blocked.ip.conf

As you see I’m adding the malicious IP to /etc/pf.blocked.ip.conf, if I later decide to filter some other IPs I can add them up there and they will be loaded and filtered by pf on next pf restart.

Next I restarted my pf firewall definitions to make the newly added rules in pf.conf to load up.

freebsd# pfctl -d
freebsd# pfctl -e -f /etc/pf.conf

To show all IPs which will be inside the blockips filtering tables, later on I used:

pfctl -t blockips -T show

I can also later use pf to add later on new IPs to be blocked without bothering to restart the firewall with cmd:

freebsd# pfctl -t blockedips -T add 111.222.333.444

Deleting an IP is analogous and can be achieved with:

freebsd# pfctl -t blockedips -T delete 111.222.333.444

There are also logs stored about pf IP blocking as well as the other configured firewall rules in /var/log/pflog file.
Hope this is helpful to somebody.

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