Migrated From WordPress to Hugo

I’ve migrated this blog from WordPress to Hugo. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. WordPress is a bit of a security nightmare, and although I’ve somehow never had my server owned, I did notice a couple of successful exfiltration attacks against WordPress while reviewing logs. Thankfully, the attacks were harmless. If you subscribe to my RSS feed, you’ll notice some repeated content. It wasn’t worth the effort to match the content GUIDs. [Read More]

Using PCI pass-through in VMware ESXi 6.7 on a 2012 Mac Mini

I use a 2012 Mac Mini as a home VMware ESXi server. It’s a surprisingly great little machine, with exceptionally low power consumption and good performance. It runs several Linux and Windows VMs. I’ve been gradually migrating applications to it, and the most recent is my home PLEX server. To do that, I needed to move a Thunderbolt disk enclosure (OWC ThunderBay 4) to the Mini and attach it to a Linux VM. [Read More]

Replacing Dropbox with BitTorrent Sync

[Edit: December, 2015 – Since BitTorrent Sync hit 2.x, I’m no longer using it and I can no longer recommend it.] Too many times, you’ve heard a cloud storage/sync product described as “like Dropbox.” There’s Box, OneDrive, Google Drive, iCloud Drive, Bitcasa, SpiderOak, Wuala, Transporter, and I’ve missed a bunch. It doesn’t matter because they’re all pretty bad, and nearly all have the same problem, which is that any data you upload can be decrypted by the provider. [Read More]

TestDisk Data Recovery on OS X

One of the 4TB external USB hard drives I use for local backups started randomly disconnecting a few days ago. Today it failed completely. It’s a Seagate Backup Plus model, where the bottom of the enclosure consists of a small, removable shim that contains the USB & power connections and the USB to SATA converter chip. After trying different USB ports and cables without success, I decided to hook up the drive directly using SATA. [Read More]

Migrating virtual machines from Amazon EC2 to Google Compute Engine

My Amazon EC2 discount contract is almost up, and I’ve been playing with Google Compute Engine (GCE). Initial impressions are that it’s faster and costs less money, particularly if you don’t want to pay up-front for EC2 reserved instances. Google’s web console is more modern than Amazon’s, though slightly less sophisticated. Google’s CLI tools are much faster and don’t require Java. Google’s API uses JSON instead of XML. In terms of capabilities, GCE is not as advanced as EC2, but it’s vastly more powerful than Linode, Digital Ocean, and the like. [Read More]