The Latest

Getting Started with Salt Stack-the Other Configuration Management System Built with Python

I was proudly wearing one of my Salt Stack shirts the other day when my daughter asked me, "What is Salt Stack?" I began by explaining the problem it solved. If you have multiple servers and want to do things to those servers, you would need to log in to each one and do those things one at a time on each one. They could be fairly simple tasks like restarting them or checking how long they have been running. Or, you might want to do more complicated things like installing software and then configuring that software based upon your own specific criteria. You also might want to add users and configure permissions for them. more>>

Biggest Data

Turns out maps matter.

That's always been the case for me. I'm a map freak. I own hundreds of paper maps in various specialties, plus many atlases, books on geography, geology and other geo-obsessions. But I'm no longer an edge case, because maps are proving to be essential on smartphones, which today approaches a billion or more people. Digital maps on phones are now among the core portfolio of smartphone apps, alongside voice, text, calendar and contacts. What could be more mobile about a phone than a map to help the user look things up and get around? more>>

Rsync, It's GRRRRaphical!

Every year for our Readers' Choice survey, the venerable tool rsync gets votes for favorite backup tool. That never surprises us, because every time I need to copy a group of files and folders, rsync is the tool I use by default. more>>

January 2013 Issue of Linux Journal: Security

Sticky Note of Doom

Years ago, I had the brilliant idea that all my users in the finance department should have complex passwords. This made perfect sense to everyone, since dealing with millions of dollars of revenue is something that should be secured. So, the passwords were changed with complexity requirements enforced. I slept better that night knowing our paychecks were no longer secured by passwords like "mustang" or "mrwhiskers".

more>>

Kbuild: the Linux Kernel Build System

One amazing thing about Linux is that the same code base is used for a different range of computing systems, from supercomputers to very tiny embedded devices. If you stop for a second and think about it, Linux is probably the only OS that has a unified code base. more>>

Space Is Big-See It All!

I have a huge collection of NASA photos taken from the Astronomy Pic of the Day Web site (http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html) stored in a folder in my Dropbox. No matter what computer system I'm using, I rotate those images on my background, getting a virtual tour of the universe on every screen. more>>

The Path to Commerce Kickstart 2.0

Editor's note: Drupal Commerce Kickstart 2.0 was released yesterday after much testing and perfecting, and the artic more>>

Symbolic Math with Python

Many programming languages include libraries to do more complicated math. You can do statistics, numerical analysis or handle big numbers. One topic many programming languages have difficulty with is symbolic math. If you use Python though, you have access to sympy, the symbolic math library. more>>

Raising the Bar for Linux Trainers

You can write shell scripts in mere seconds, hack the kernel in your sleep and perform other feats of Linux wizardry—but can you teach? more>>

Readers' Choice Awards

Readers' Choice votes are in! Compare your favorites with other readers and see if you're the oddball or everyone else is! more>>

Playing Value Subtraction Games

I'm writing this in an Amsterdam apartment we rented for the weekend through AirBNB. The main reason we chose this place wasn't comfort or convenience. It was connectivity. This apartment was relatively cheap (about a quarter or a third of the price of a three-star hotel), but reports said the Internet connection was good. more>>

Android Candy: Never Plug In Your Phone Again!

Last month, I showed you an awesome audiobook player app for Android, but I didn't share my frustration in getting the audio files on to my phone. When I plugged my phone in to the computer, I couldn't get the SD card to mount, no matter what settings I changed. more>>

December 2012 Issue of Linux Journal: Readers' Choice

Data, Data Everywhere

When I was younger, I read a lot of books. Although they've fallen out of style, some of my favorite books were of the "Choose Your Own Adventure" variety. more>>

New Products for November

Please send information about releases of Linux-related products to newproducts@linuxjournal.com or New Products c/o Linux Journal, PO Box 980985, Houston, TX 77098. Submissions are edited for length and content.

Writebox

I've reviewed plenty of simple text editors designed for writers. For my writing, I really desire only a few features:

Support for plain text.

Spell Czech.

Running word count. more>>

Arduino Teaches Old Coder New Tricks

I became aware of the Arduino Project from occasional media reports and a presentation at Atlanta LinuxFest 2009. I was impressed with what the Arduino community was doing, but at that time, I saw no personal use for it. It took a grandson who is heavily involved in a high-school competitive robotics program to change things for me. more>>

Feynman Figures for Fun

In quantum physics, one of the calculations you might want to do is figure out how two or more particles may interact. This can become rather complicated and confusing once you get to more than two particles interacting, however. Also, depending on the interaction, there may be the creation and annihilation of virtual particles as part of the interaction. more>>

Please Take Our Survey!

Please take our short survey. It will only take minutes. Thank you! more>>

Android Candy—Smart Audiobook Player

The Audible app for Android is a great way to consume audiobooks. You have access to all the books you've purchased on Audible, and you can download them at will. Plus, the app provides all the bookmarking features you'd expect from a professional application. Unfortunately, if your audiobooks are from somewhere other than Audible, you need something a little more flexible. more>>

Introducing Vagrant

Have you ever heard the following? "Welcome to the team! Here's a list of 15 applications to install, the instructions are in the team room, somewhere. more>>

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Linux Backup and Recovery Webinar

Most companies incorporate backup procedures for critical data, which can be restored quickly if a loss occurs. However, fewer companies are prepared for catastrophic system failures, in which they lose all data, the entire operating system, applications, settings, patches and more, reducing their system(s) to “bare metal.” After all, before data can be restored to a system, there must be a system to restore it to.

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