Articles in the system_administration category

  1. Enable gzip in Nginx

    Posted on in System Administration

    If you have ever used any tool to optimize a web page, you know that compressing the return traffic to the client is a big win. In nginx, this is done with the gzip module. The easiest thing to do is add gzip on; to the http stanza in your …

  2. Magento Home Page Returns 404 Status Code

    Posted on in System Administration

    Naturally, I ran into this problem in the middle of the night when the client was asleep and I had no access to the Magento administrative interface. The short story is that after running a re-index of the site, the home page began returning a 404 error status. A bit …

  3. [MacPorts] upgrade gnutls failed

    Posted on in System Administration

    MacPorts logo

    I ran into this issue while trying to install wine-devel on my Mid 2012 MacBook Pro running El Capitan and MacPorts 2.3.4. As the install progressed, here is the error I got:

    Error: for port glib2 returned: command execution failed
    Please see the log file …
  4. What's Next? Using Chrome OS and Crouton For Work

    Posted on in System Administration

    It is well-documented that I am a heavy Google user. I use Gmail and Google Docs for just about everything. Additionally, I have used an Android phone since I got the HTC Dream (AKA T-Mobile G1) when it first came out.

    However, I have been using OS X full-time since …

  5. Redis: Better Session Storage for Magento

    Posted on in System Administration

    Out of the box, Magento has four methods available for storing session data: filesystem, database, memcached, and tmpfs. The default method is to store session information in the filesystem. I believe that storing sessions in Redis is actually superior to all of the aforementioned methods. Each of the four default …

  6. El Capitan Leads to More DNS Woes

    Posted on in System Administration

    For whatever reason, Apple really likes messing with how I use DNS.

    I've written many, many, many times about having to modify OS X's DNS functionality to append search domains when a hostname includes a dot. Every single time I upgrade, this change is broken.

    Previously, the workaround had been …

  7. nginx: Blocking Access to /xmlrpc.php

    Posted on in System Administration

    I recently ran into an issue on a Wordpress site running behind an nginx web server. The site was frequently being attacked by a botnet hitting /xmlrpc.php so rapidly, it would eventually force the FastCGI processes behind nginx to consume all available CPU. Naturally, this would cause all legitimate …

  8. Goodbye, discoveryd. Hello again, mDNSResponder.

    Posted on in System Administration


    Once again, Apple has made a change in how DNS is handled in Mac OS X. Originally, Yosemite (10.10) had replaced mDNSResponder with discoveryd. This meant that all of those who had made a change to force mDNSResponder to always append search domains to DNS lookups had to …

  9. Why Isn't tmpreaper Working?

    Posted on in System Administration

    If you have a directory that you want to keep clean, tmpreaper is a great way to remove files based on how old they are. The other day, I had a directory that looked like this:

    x@x:~/dump$ ls -l
    -rw-r--r-- 1 x x 212268169 Mar 15 01:02 …
  10. WARNING: The following packages cannot be authenticated!

    Posted on in System Administration

    We run several (read: hundreds) of servers that are still running Debian 6 (Squeeze). A few months ago, we started seeing the following errors coming from the daily apt cronjob: "WARNING: The following packages cannot be authenticated!" When running apt-get update the following errors dump out:

    $ apt-get update
    W: GPG …

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