Linux, musical road-dogging, and daily life by Paul W. Frields
Older but not yet wiser, apparently.

Older but not yet wiser, apparently.

Data Recovery

After the catastrophe, I was able to recover most of my important information. I would classify as “important” the following things:

* Taxes (backed up)
* Digital pictures of the kids
* Web site data

Unfortunately, “most” in this case means all of the top two categories, and a little of the third. I recovered the site for our homeowners association, but lost about six months or so of this weblog — I would say that portion was the more interesting portion, but others might disagree. ?

The problem was caused by a combination of lack of foresight, casual attitude toward backups (you don’t know how much you’ll miss something until it’s gone), and not observing proper safeguards on cron jobs such as restricting their privilege environment. That’s known as “running as root” for those of you who observe such things. Yes, I know better, but I figured what the hey, it’s just my home server.

Over time, though, you forget the jobs are running, because everything Just Works — it is Linux, after all. And the complacency which that efficiency inspires can be very harmful in the long run. A small lack of error checking in conjunction with an over-privileged script spells cataclysm.

The worst part was that, as God is my witness, I had scheduled myself to do some backups over the Memorial Day weekend — only 24 hours after the disaster. If you look in the dictionary next to the word “devastated” you’ll see a little picture of my face.

Fedora IG

In good news, though, the Fedora Installation Guide is completed and will be ready for the release of Core 4 next week. Although it probably won’t make it to the ISO images, it will be available at the documentation pages for all. Stuart Ellis pegged its status correctly, which I will paraphrase as “incomplete but sufficient for now.”

New Toy

Eleya and I took the kids with us this weekend to furniture shop for entertainment centers and decoration ideas, and ended up buying a long console stand for the family room — and this to go with it. My favorite feature: IEEE-1394 ports to connect our MiniDV camcorder. I’ll buy a cable for that this weekend to try it out.


So I’m turning 35 this coming weekend and trying to figure out exactly when I’m supposed to start feeling like I have it all together. I mean, I have the wife, kids, steady job, house, and so forth, but I’ll be damned if I feel a whole hell of a lot more like an adult then I did when I was 25. But yet I’m trying to help raise, discipline, and encourage two tiny little people… The secret is apparently that there is no secret. We do what we can, plan for the worst, and hope for the best. I’m comfortable with that, but I still wonder about how much I’m getting wrong daily. I suppose we all do.


  1. here’s a positive thought: if life expectancy for an american(tm) male is somewhere in the neighborhood of 75 years, then you are now quite middle-aged.

    i kinda chuckle whenever a 55 year old refers to himself as “middle-aged.” yeah, if you make it to 110, buddy. :-p

    like the new design (stylesheet?). has a feel something like 2 parts london underground and 1 part communist party regalia.

    and happy birthday. wish we could be there. raincheck?

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