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Showing posts from December, 2009

Getting Debian to email with exim4 and Google Mail

There are may reasons why would might like to run a headless Debian server on your home network. I have mine primarily as as file-store, serving video, music and pictures to my Windows MCE PC (you see I'm not one of these Windows hating Linux nerds, use the right tool for the right job I say!).

Being headless and tucked away in a dark corner it's important to be able to manage the system with little fuss, and I use ssh to login and administer the system remotely. The question here though is 'When do I know that I need login and do something?'. I ideally want to know asap if there are some important security updates (apticron), or that the raid (mdadm) has run into some trouble or if some important cron job has spewed some helpful output.

Lucky for me is was fairly straightforward to configure the server to email my google mail (gmail) account whenever it has something important to say, and here's how I did it! I have this working on both Lenny and Squeeze.

First of…

USB Flash Drive Encryption

Securing data on a USB pendrive can allow you to carry around useful, yet sensitive data with very few concerns. This post outlines a way of cryptographically securing a USB pendrive using crypsetup and LUKS in such a way that a drive may be unlocked on most Linux system without the addition of extra software (e.g. TruCrypt). As an added bonus it's possible to mount the drive in a Windows environment as well. Hurrah!

The first thing to decide is how you are going to partition your drive. I find it useful to have an unencrypted partition as well as the encrypted as this affords the convenience and functionality as well as offering security. The primary consideration here is that natively Widows will only recognise the first partition on the pendrive, so if you wish to have an open data partition let it be the first.

Below shows how an 8GB pendrive (in this case the device is /dev/sdh) is split roughly is half with an ~4GB FAT32 partition at the front. Use you favorite partitioning…