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30 April 2021

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities April 2021

Focus This month I didn't have any particular focus. I just worked on issues in my info bubble.

Changes

Issues

Review

Administration
  • Debian: restart service killed by OOM killer, revert mirror redirection
  • Debian wiki: unblock IP addresses, approve accounts

Communication

Sponsors The flower/sptag work was sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

11 April 2021

Vishal Gupta: Sikkim 101 for Backpackers

Host to Kanchenjunga, the world s third-highest mountain peak and the endangered Red Panda, Sikkim is a state in northeastern India. Nestled between Nepal, Tibet (China), Bhutan and West Bengal (India), the state offers a smorgasbord of cultures and cuisines. That said, it s hardly surprising that the old spice route meanders through western Sikkim, connecting Lhasa with the ports of Bengal. Although the latter could also be attributed to cardamom (kali elaichi), a perennial herb native to Sikkim, which the state is the second-largest producer of, globally. Lastly, having been to and lived in India, all my life, I can confidently say Sikkim is one of the cleanest & safest regions in India, making it ideal for first-time backpackers.

Brief History
  • 17th century: The Kingdom of Sikkim is founded by the Namgyal dynasty and ruled by Buddhist priest-kings known as the Chogyal.
  • 1890: Sikkim becomes a princely state of British India.
  • 1947: Sikkim continues its protectorate status with the Union of India, post-Indian-independence.
  • 1973: Anti-royalist riots take place in front of the Chogyal's palace, by Nepalis seeking greater representation.
  • 1975: Referendum leads to the deposition of the monarchy and Sikkim joins India as its 22nd state.
Languages
  • Official: English, Nepali, Sikkimese/Bhotia and Lepcha
  • Though Hindi and Nepali share the same script (Devanagari), they are not mutually intelligible. Yet, most people in Sikkim can understand and speak Hindi.
Ethnicity
  • Nepalis: Migrated in large numbers (from Nepal) and soon became the dominant community
  • Bhutias: People of Tibetan origin. Major inhabitants in Northern Sikkim.
  • Lepchas: Original inhabitants of Sikkim

Food
  • Tibetan/Nepali dishes (mostly consumed during winter)
    • Thukpa: Noodle soup, rich in spices and vegetables. Usually contains some form of meat. Common variations: Thenthuk and Gyathuk
    • Momos: Steamed or fried dumplings, usually with a meat filling.
    • Saadheko: Spicy marinated chicken salad.
    • Gundruk Soup: A soup made from Gundruk, a fermented leafy green vegetable.
    • Sinki : A fermented radish tap-root product, traditionally consumed as a base for soup and as a pickle. Eerily similar to Kimchi.
  • While pork and beef are pretty common, finding vegetarian dishes is equally easy.
  • Staple: Dal-Bhat with Subzi. Rice is a lot more common than wheat (rice) possibly due to greater carb content and proximity to West Bengal, India s largest producer of Rice.
  • Good places to eat in Gangtok
    • Hamro Bhansa Ghar, Nimtho (Nepali)
    • Taste of Tibet
    • Dragon Wok (Chinese & Japanese)

Buddhism in Sikkim
  • Bayul Demojong (Sikkim), is the most sacred Land in the Himalayas as per the belief of the Northern Buddhists and various religious texts.
  • Sikkim was blessed by Guru Padmasambhava, the great Buddhist saint who visited Sikkim in the 8th century and consecrated the land.
  • However, Buddhism is said to have reached Sikkim only in the 17th century with the arrival of three Tibetan monks viz. Rigdzin Goedki Demthruchen, Mon Kathok Sonam Gyaltshen & Rigdzin Legden Je at Yuksom. Together, they established a Buddhist monastery.
  • In 1642 they crowned Phuntsog Namgyal as the first monarch of Sikkim and gave him the title of Chogyal, or Dharma Raja.
  • The faith became popular through its royal patronage and soon many villages had their own monastery.
  • Today Sikkim has over 200 monasteries.

Major monasteries
  • Rumtek Monastery, 20Km from Gangtok
  • Lingdum/Ranka Monastery, 17Km from Gangtok
  • Phodong Monastery, 28Km from Gangtok
  • Ralang Monastery, 10Km from Ravangla
  • Tsuklakhang Monastery, Royal Palace, Gangtok
  • Enchey Monastery, Gangtok
  • Tashiding Monastery, 35Km from Ravangla


Reaching Sikkim
  • Gangtok, being the capital, is easiest to reach amongst other regions, by public transport and shared cabs.
  • By Air:
    • Pakyong (PYG) :
      • Nearest airport from Gangtok (about 1 hour away)
      • Tabletop airport
      • Reserved cabs cost around INR 1200.
      • As of Apr 2021, the only flights to PYG are from IGI (Delhi) and CCU (Kolkata).
    • Bagdogra (IXB) :
      • About 20 minutes from Siliguri and 4 hours from Gangtok.
      • Larger airport with flights to most major Indian cities.
      • Reserved cabs cost about INR 3000. Shared cabs cost about INR 350.
  • By Train:
    • New Jalpaiguri (NJP) :
      • About 20 minutes from Siliguri and 4 hours from Gangtok.
      • Reserved cabs cost about INR 3000. Shared cabs from INR 350.
  • By Road:
    • NH10 connects Siliguri to Gangtok
    • If you can t find buses plying to Gangtok directly, reach Siliguri and then take a cab to Gangtok.
  • Sikkim Nationalised Transport Div. also runs hourly buses between Siliguri and Gangtok and daily buses on other common routes. They re cheaper than shared cabs.
  • Wizzride also operates shared cabs between Siliguri/Bagdogra/NJP, Gangtok and Darjeeling. They cost about the same as shared cabs but pack in half as many people in luxury cars (Innova, Xylo, etc.) and are hence more comfortable.

Gangtok
  • Time needed: 1D/1N
  • Places to visit:
    • Hanuman Tok
    • Ganesh Tok
    • Tashi View Point [6,800ft]
    • MG Marg
    • Sikkim Zoo
    • Gangtok Ropeway
    • Enchey Monastery
    • Tsuklakhang Palace & Monastery
  • Hostels: Tagalong Backpackers (would strongly recommend), Zostel Gangtok
  • Places to chill: Travel Cafe, Caf Live & Loud and Gangtok Groove
  • Places to shop: Lal Market and MG Marg

Getting Around
  • Taxis operate on a reserved or shared basis. In case of the latter, you can pool with other commuters your taxis will pick up and drop en-route.
  • Naturally shared taxis only operate on popular routes. The easiest way to get around Gangtok is to catch a shared cab from MG Marg.
  • Reserved taxis for Gangtok sightseeing cost around INR 1000-1500, depending upon the spots you d like to see
  • Key taxi/bus stands :
    • Deorali stand: For Darjeeling, Siliguri, Kalimpong
    • Vajra stand: For North & East Sikkim (Tsomgo Lake & Nathula)
    • Rumtek taxi: For Ravangla, Pelling, Namchi, Geyzing, Jorethang and Singtam.
Exploring Gangtok on an MTB

North Sikkim
  • The easiest & most economical way to explore North Sikkim is the 3D/2N package offered by shared-cab drivers.
  • This includes food, permits, cab rides and accommodation (1N in Lachen and 1N in Lachung)
  • The accommodation on both nights are at homestays with bare necessities, so keep your hopes low.
  • In the spirit of sustainable tourism, you ll be asked to discard single-use plastic bottles, so please carry a bottle that you can refill along the way.
  • Zero Point and Gurdongmer Lake are snow-capped throughout the year
3D/2N Shared-cab Package Itinerary
  • Day 1
    • Gangtok (10am) - Chungthang - Lachung (stay)
  • Day 2
    • Pre-lunch : Lachung (6am) - Yumthang Valley [12,139ft] - Zero Point - Lachung [15,300ft]
    • Post-lunch : Lachung - Chungthang - Lachen (stay)
  • Day 3
    • Pre-lunch : Lachen (5am) - Kala Patthar - Gurdongmer Lake [16,910ft] - Lachen
    • Post-lunch : Lachen - Chungthang - Gangtok (7pm)
  • This itinerary is idealistic and depends on the level of snowfall.
  • Some drivers might switch up Day 2 and 3 itineraries by visiting Lachen and then Lachung, depending upon the weather.
  • Areas beyond Lachen & Lachung are heavily militarized since the Indo-China border is only a few miles away.

East Sikkim

Zuluk and Silk Route
  • Time needed: 2D/1N
  • Zuluk [9,400ft] is a small hamlet with an excellent view of the eastern Himalayan range including the Kanchenjunga.
  • Was once a transit point to the historic Silk Route from Tibet (Lhasa) to India (West Bengal).
  • The drive from Gangtok to Zuluk takes at least four hours. Hence, it makes sense to spend the night at a homestay and space out your trip to Zuluk

Tsomgo Lake and Nathula
  • Time Needed : 1D
  • A Protected Area Permit is required to visit these places, due to their proximity to the Chinese border
  • Tsomgo/Chhangu Lake [12,313ft]
    • Glacial lake, 40 km from Gangtok.
    • Remains frozen during the winter season.
    • You can also ride on the back of a Yak for INR 300
  • Baba Mandir
    • An old temple dedicated to Baba Harbhajan Singh, a Sepoy in the 23rd Regiment, who died in 1962 near the Nathu La during Indo China war.
  • Nathula Pass [14,450ft]
    • Located on the Indo-Tibetan border crossing of the Old Silk Route, it is one of the three open trading posts between India and China.
    • Plays a key role in the Sino-Indian Trade and also serves as an official Border Personnel Meeting(BPM) Point.
    • May get cordoned off by the Indian Army in event of heavy snowfall or for other security reasons.


West Sikkim
  • Time needed: 3N/1N
  • Hostels at Pelling : Mochilerro Ostillo

Itinerary

Day 1: Gangtok - Ravangla - Pelling
  • Leave Gangtok early, for Ravangla through the Temi Tea Estate route.
  • Spend some time at the tea garden and then visit Buddha Park at Ravangla
  • Head to Pelling from Ravangla

Day 2: Pelling sightseeing
  • Hire a cab and visit Skywalk, Pemayangtse Monastery, Rabdentse Ruins, Kecheopalri Lake, Kanchenjunga Falls.

Day 3: Pelling - Gangtok/Siliguri
  • Wake up early to catch a glimpse of Kanchenjunga at the Pelling Helipad around sunrise
  • Head back to Gangtok on a shared-cab
  • You could take a bus/taxi back to Siliguri if Pelling is your last stop.

Darjeeling
  • In my opinion, Darjeeling is lovely for a two-day detour on your way back to Bagdogra/Siliguri and not any longer (unless you re a Bengali couple on a honeymoon)
  • Once a part of Sikkim, Darjeeling was ceded to the East India Company after a series of wars, with Sikkim briefly receiving a grant from EIC for gifting Darjeeling to the latter
  • Post-independence, Darjeeling was merged with the state of West Bengal.

Itinerary

Day 1 :
  • Take a cab from Gangtok to Darjeeling (shared-cabs cost INR 300 per seat)
  • Reach Darjeeling by noon and check in to your Hostel. I stayed at Hideout.
  • Spend the evening visiting either a monastery (or the Batasia Loop), Nehru Road and Mall Road.
  • Grab dinner at Glenary whilst listening to live music.

Day 2:
  • Wake up early to catch the sunrise and a glimpse of Kanchenjunga at Tiger Hill. Since Tiger Hill is 10km from Darjeeling and requires a permit, book your taxi in advance.
  • Alternatively, if you don t want to get up at 4am or shell out INR1500 on the cab to Tiger Hill, walk to the Kanchenjunga View Point down Mall Road
  • Next, queue up outside Keventers for breakfast with a view in a century-old cafe
  • Get a cab at Gandhi Road and visit a tea garden (Happy Valley is the closest) and the Ropeway. I was lucky to meet 6 other backpackers at my hostel and we ended up pooling the cab at INR 200 per person, with INR 1400 being on the expensive side, but you could bargain.
  • Get lunch, buy some tea at Golden Tips, pack your bags and hop on a shared-cab back to Siliguri. It took us about 4hrs to reach Siliguri, with an hour to spare before my train.
  • If you ve still got time on your hands, then check out the Peace Pagoda and the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (Toy Train). At INR 1500, I found the latter to be too expensive and skipped it.


Tips and hacks
  • Download offline maps, especially when you re exploring Northern Sikkim.
  • Food and booze are the cheapest in Gangtok. Stash up before heading to other regions.
  • Keep your Aadhar/Passport handy since you need permits to travel to North & East Sikkim.
  • In rural areas and some cafes, you may get to try Rhododendron Wine, made from Rhododendron arboreum a.k.a Gurans. Its production is a little hush-hush since the flower is considered holy and is also the National Flower of Nepal.
  • If you don t want to invest in a new jacket, boots or a pair of gloves, you can always rent them at nominal rates from your hotel or little stores around tourist sites.
  • Check the weather of a region before heading there. Low visibility and precipitation can quite literally dampen your experience.
  • Keep your itinerary flexible to accommodate for rest and impromptu plans.
  • Shops and restaurants close by 8pm in Sikkim and Darjeeling. Plan for the same.

Carry
  • a couple of extra pairs of socks (woollen, if possible)
  • a pair of slippers to wear indoors
  • a reusable water bottle
  • an umbrella
  • a power bank
  • a couple of tablets of Diamox. Helps deal with altitude sickness
  • extra clothes and wet bags since you may not get a chance to wash/dry your clothes
  • a few passport size photographs

Shared-cab hacks
  • Intercity rides can be exhausting. If you can afford it, pay for an additional seat.
  • Call shotgun on the drives beyond Lachen and Lachung. The views are breathtaking.
  • Return cabs tend to be cheaper (WB cabs travelling from SK and vice-versa)

Cost
  • My median daily expenditure (back when I went to Sikkim in early March 2021) was INR 1350.
  • This includes stay (bunk bed), food, wine and transit (shared cabs)
  • In my defence, I splurged on food, wine and extra seats in shared cabs, but if you re on a budget, you could easily get by on INR 1 - 1.2k per day.
  • For a 9-day trip, I ended up shelling out nearly INR 15k, including 2AC trains to & from Kolkata
  • Note : Summer (March to May) and Autumn (October to December) are peak seasons, and thereby more expensive to travel around.

Souvenirs and things you should buy

Buddhist souvenirs :
  • Colourful Prayer Flags (great for tying on bikes or behind car windshields)
  • Miniature Prayer/Mani Wheels
  • Lucky Charms, Pendants and Key Chains
  • Cham Dance masks and robes
  • Singing Bowls
  • Common symbols: Om mani padme hum, Ashtamangala, Zodiac signs

Handicrafts & Handlooms
  • Tibetan Yak Wool shawls, scarfs and carpets
  • Sikkimese Ceramic cups
  • Thangka Paintings

Edibles
  • Darjeeling Tea (usually brewed and not boiled)
  • Wine (Arucha Peach & Rhododendron)
  • Dalle Khursani (Chilli) Paste and Pickle

Header Icon made by Freepik from www.flaticon.com is licensed by CC 3.0 BY

1 April 2021

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities March 2021

Focus This month I didn't have any particular focus. I just worked on issues in my info bubble.

Changes

Issues

Debugging

Review

Administration
  • Debian packages: migrate flower git repo from alioth-archive to salsa
  • Debian: restart bacula-director after PostgreSQL restart
  • Debian wiki: block spammer, clean up spam, approve accounts

Communication

Sponsors The librecaptcha/libpst/flower/marco work was sponsored by my employers. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

23 March 2021

Antoine Beaupr : Major email crash with syncmaildir

TL:DR; lost half my mail (150,000 messages, ~6GB) last night. Cause uncertain, but possibly a combination of a dead CMOS battery, systemd OnCalendar=daily, a (locking?) bug in syncmaildir, and generally, a system too exotic and complicated.

The crash So I somehow lost half my mail:
anarcat@angela:~(main)$ du -sh Maildir/
7,9G    Maildir/
anarcat@curie:~(main)$ du -sh Maildir
14G     Maildir
anarcat@marcos:~$ du -sh Maildir
8,0G    Maildir
Those are three different machines:
  • angela: my laptop, not always on
  • curie: my workstation, mostly always on
  • marcos: my mail server, always on
Those mails are synchronized using a rather exotic system based on SSH, syncmaildir and rsendmail. The anomaly started on curie:
-- Reboot --
mar 22 16:13:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:13:00 curie smd-pull[4801]: rm: impossible de supprimer '/home/anarcat/.smd/workarea/Maildir': Le dossier n'est pas vide
mar 22 16:13:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:13:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:13:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 16:14:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:14:00 curie smd-pull[7025]:  4091 ?        00:00:00 smd-push
mar 22 16:14:00 curie smd-pull[7025]: Already running.
mar 22 16:14:00 curie smd-pull[7025]: If this is not the case, remove /home/anarcat/.smd/lock by hand.
mar 22 16:14:00 curie smd-pull[7025]: any: smd-pushpull@localhost: TAGS: error::context(locking) probable-cause(another-instance-is-running) human-intervention(necessary) suggested-actions(run(kill 4091) run(rm /home/anarcat/.smd/lock))
mar 22 16:14:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:14:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:14:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
Then it seems like smd-push (from curie) started destroying the universe for some reason:
mar 22 16:20:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:20:00 curie smd-pull[9319]:  4091 ?        00:00:00 smd-push
mar 22 16:20:00 curie smd-pull[9319]: Already running.
mar 22 16:20:00 curie smd-pull[9319]: If this is not the case, remove /home/anarcat/.smd/lock by hand.
mar 22 16:20:00 curie smd-pull[9319]: any: smd-pushpull@localhost: TAGS: error::context(locking) probable-cause(another-instance-is-running) human-intervention(necessary) suggested-actions(ru
mar 22 16:20:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:20:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:20:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 16:21:34 curie smd-push[4091]: default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(293920), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(26995)
mar 22 16:21:35 curie smd-push[9374]: register: smd-client@smd-server-register: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(215)
mar 22 16:21:35 curie systemd[3199]: smd-push.service: Succeeded.
Notice the del-mails(293920) there: it is actively trying to destroy basically every email in my mail spool. Then somehow push and pull started both at once:
mar 22 16:21:35 curie systemd[3199]: Started push emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 16:21:35 curie systemd[3199]: Starting push emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-pull[10333]:  9455 ?        00:00:00 smd-push
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-pull[10333]: Already running.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-pull[10333]: If this is not the case, remove /home/anarcat/.smd/lock by hand.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-pull[10333]: any: smd-pushpull@localhost: TAGS: error::context(locking) probable-cause(another-instance-is-running) human-intervention(necessary) suggested-actions(r
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: smd-client: ERROR: Data transmission failed.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: smd-client: ERROR: This problem is transient, please retry.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: smd-client: ERROR: server sent ABORT or connection died
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: smd-server: ERROR: Unable to open Maildir/.kobo/cur/1498563708.M122624P22121.marcos,S=32234,W=32792:2,S: Maildir/.kobo/cur/1498563708.M122624P22121.marco
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: smd-server: ERROR: The problem should be transient, please retry.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: smd-server: ERROR: Unable to open requested file.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(293920), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(26995)
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: error::context(receive) probable-cause(network) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(retry)
mar 22 16:22:00 curie smd-push[9455]: default: smd-server@localhost: TAGS: error::context(transmit) probable-cause(simultaneous-mailbox-edit) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(r
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-push.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-push.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start push emails with syncmaildir.
There it seems push tried to destroy the universe again: del-mails(293920). Interestingly, the push started again in parallel with the pull, right that minute:
mar 22 16:22:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting push emails with syncmaildir...
... but didn't complete for a while, here's pull trying to start again:
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-pull[12051]: 10466 ?        00:00:00 smd-push
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-pull[12051]: Already running.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-pull[12051]: If this is not the case, remove /home/anarcat/.smd/lock by hand.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-pull[12051]: any: smd-pushpull@localhost: TAGS: error::context(locking) probable-cause(another-instance-is-running) human-intervention(necessary) suggested-actions(run(kill 10466) run(rm /home/anarcat/.smd/lock))
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
... and the long push finally resolving:
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-client: ERROR: Data transmission failed.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-client: ERROR: This problem is transient, please retry.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-client: ERROR: server sent ABORT or connection died
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-client: ERROR: Data transmission failed.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-client: ERROR: This problem is transient, please retry.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-client: ERROR: server sent ABORT or connection died
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-server: ERROR: Unable to open Maildir/.kobo/cur/1498563708.M122624P22121.marcos,S=32234,W=32792:2,S: Maildir/.kobo/cur/1498563708.M122624P22121.marcos,S=32234,W=32792:2,S: No such file or directory
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-server: ERROR: The problem should be transient, please retry.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: smd-server: ERROR: Unable to open requested file.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(293920), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(26995)
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: error::context(receive) probable-cause(network) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(retry)
mar 22 16:24:00 curie smd-push[10466]: default: smd-server@localhost: TAGS: error::context(transmit) probable-cause(simultaneous-mailbox-edit) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(retry)
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-push.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-push.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start push emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 16:24:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting push emails with syncmaildir...
This pattern repeats until 16:35, when that locking issue silently recovered somehow:
mar 22 16:35:03 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:35:41 curie smd-pull[20788]: default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(5), del-mails(1), bytes-received(21885), xdelta-received(6863398)
mar 22 16:35:42 curie smd-pull[21373]: register: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(215)
mar 22 16:35:42 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Succeeded.
mar 22 16:35:42 curie systemd[3199]: Started pull emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 16:36:35 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:36:36 curie smd-pull[21738]: default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(214)
mar 22 16:36:37 curie smd-pull[21816]: register: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(215)
mar 22 16:36:37 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Succeeded.
mar 22 16:36:37 curie systemd[3199]: Started pull emails with syncmaildir.
... notice that huge xdelta-received there, that's 7GB right there. Mysteriously, the curie mail spool survived this, possibly because smd-pull started failing again:
mar 22 16:38:00 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:38:00 curie smd-pull[23556]: 21887 ?        00:00:00 smd-push
mar 22 16:38:00 curie smd-pull[23556]: Already running.
mar 22 16:38:00 curie smd-pull[23556]: If this is not the case, remove /home/anarcat/.smd/lock by hand.
mar 22 16:38:00 curie smd-pull[23556]: any: smd-pushpull@localhost: TAGS: error::context(locking) probable-cause(another-instance-is-running) human-intervention(necessary) suggested-actions(run(kill 21887) run(rm /home/anarcat/.smd/lock))
mar 22 16:38:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:38:00 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:38:00 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
That could have been when i got on angela to check my mail, and it was busy doing the nasty removal stuff... although the times don't match. Here is when angela came back online:
anarcat@angela:~(main)$ last
anarcat  :0           :0               Mon Mar 22 19:57   still logged in
reboot   system boot  5.10.0-0.bpo.3-a Mon Mar 22 19:57   still running
anarcat  :0           :0               Mon Mar 22 17:43 - 18:47  (01:03)
reboot   system boot  5.10.0-0.bpo.3-a Mon Mar 22 17:39   still running
Then finally the sync on curie started failing with:
mar 22 16:46:35 curie systemd[3199]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-server: ERROR: Client aborted, removing /home/anarcat/.smd/curie-anarcat__Maildir.db.txt.new and /home/anarcat/.smd/curie-anarcat__Maildir.db.txt.mtime.new
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR: Failed to copy Maildir/.debian/cur/1613401668.M901837P27073.marcos,S=3740,W=3815:2,S to Maildir/.koumbit/cur/1613401640.M415457P27063.marcos,S=3790,W=3865:2,S
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR: The destination already exists but its content differs.
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR: To fix this problem you have two options:
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR: - rename Maildir/.koumbit/cur/1613401640.M415457P27063.marcos,S=3790,W=3865:2,S by hand so that Maildir/.debian/cur/1613401668.M901837P27073.marcos,S=3740,W=3815:2,S
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR:   can be copied without replacing it.
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR:   Executing  cd; mv -n "Maildir/.koumbit/cur/1613401640.M415457P27063.marcos,S=3790,W=3865:2,S" "Maildir/.koumbit/cur/1616446002.1.localhost"  should work.
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR: - run smd-push so that your changes to Maildir/.koumbit/cur/1613401640.M415457P27063.marcos,S=3790,W=3865:2,S
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: smd-client: ERROR:   are propagated to the other mailbox
mar 22 16:46:42 curie smd-pull[27455]: default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: error::context(copy-message) probable-cause(concurrent-mailbox-edit) human-intervention(necessary) suggested-actions(run(mv -n "/home/anarcat/.smd/workarea/Maildir/.koumbit/cur/1613401640.M415457P27063.marcos,S=3790,W=3865:2,S" "/home/anarcat/.smd/workarea/Maildir/.koumbit/tmp/1613401640.M415457P27063.marcos,S=3790,W=3865:2,S") run(smd-push default))
mar 22 16:46:42 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 16:46:42 curie systemd[3199]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 16:46:42 curie systemd[3199]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
It went on like this until I found the problem. This is, presumably, a good thing because those emails were not being destroyed. On angela, things looked like this:
-- Reboot --
mar 22 17:39:29 angela systemd[1677]: Started run notmuch new at least once a day.
mar 22 17:39:29 angela systemd[1677]: Started run smd-pull regularly.
mar 22 17:40:46 angela systemd[1677]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: smd-server: ERROR: Unable to open Maildir/.tor/new/1616446842.M285912P26118.marcos,S=8860,W=8996: Maildir/.tor/new/1616446842.M285912P26118.marcos,S=886
0,W=8996: No such file or directory
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: smd-server: ERROR: The problem should be transient, please retry.
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: smd-server: ERROR: Unable to open requested file.
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: smd-client: ERROR: Data transmission failed.
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: smd-client: ERROR: This problem is transient, please retry.
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: smd-client: ERROR: server sent ABORT or connection died
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: default: smd-server@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: error::context(transmit) probable-cause(simultaneous-mailbox-edit) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested
-actions(retry)
mar 22 17:43:18 angela smd-pull[3916]: default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: error::context(receive) probable-cause(network) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(retry)
mar 22 17:43:18 angela systemd[1677]: smd-pull.service: Main process exited, code=exited, status=1/FAILURE
mar 22 17:43:18 angela systemd[1677]: smd-pull.service: Failed with result 'exit-code'.
mar 22 17:43:18 angela systemd[1677]: Failed to start pull emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 17:43:18 angela systemd[1677]: Starting pull emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 17:43:29 angela smd-pull[4847]: default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(29), del-mails(0), bytes-received(401519), xdelta-received(38914)
mar 22 17:43:29 angela smd-pull[5600]: register: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(2), del-mails(0), bytes-received(92150), xdelta-received(471)
mar 22 17:43:29 angela systemd[1677]: smd-pull.service: Succeeded.
mar 22 17:43:29 angela systemd[1677]: Started pull emails with syncmaildir.
mar 22 17:43:29 angela systemd[1677]: Starting push emails with syncmaildir...
mar 22 17:43:32 angela smd-push[5693]: default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(217)
mar 22 17:43:33 angela smd-push[6575]: register: smd-client@smd-server-register: TAGS: stats::new-mails(0), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(219)
mar 22 17:43:33 angela systemd[1677]: smd-push.service: Succeeded.
mar 22 17:43:33 angela systemd[1677]: Started push emails with syncmaildir.
Notice how long it took to get the first error, in that first failure: it failed after 3 minutes! Presumably that's when it started deleting all that mail. And this is during pull, not push, so the error didn't come from angela.

Affected data It seems 2GB of mail from my main INBOX was destroyed. Another 2.4GB of spam (kept for training purposes) was also destroyed, along with 700MB of Sent mail. The rest is hard to figure out, because the folders are actually still there, just smaller. So I relied on ncdu to figure out the size changes. (Note that I don't really archive (or delete much of) my mail since I use notmuch, which is why the INBOX is so large...) Concretely, according to the notmuch-new.service which still runs periodically on marcos, here are the changes that happened on the server:
mar 22 16:17:12 marcos notmuch[10729]: Added 7 new messages to the database. Removed 57985 messages. Detected 1372 file renames.
mar 22 16:22:43 marcos notmuch[12826]: No new mail. Removed 143842 messages. Detected 6072 file renames.
mar 22 16:27:02 marcos notmuch[13969]: No new mail. Removed 82071 messages. Detected 1783 file renames.
mar 22 16:29:45 marcos notmuch[15079]: Added 22743 new messages to the database. Detected 1 file rename.
mar 22 16:31:48 marcos notmuch[16196]: Added 22779 new messages to the database. Removed 5 messages.
mar 22 16:33:11 marcos notmuch[17192]: Added 3711 new messages to the database.
mar 22 16:40:41 marcos notmuch[19122]: Added 74558 new messages to the database. Detected 1 file rename.
mar 22 16:43:21 marcos notmuch[20325]: Added 9061 new messages to the database. Detected 4 file renames.
mar 22 17:43:08 marcos notmuch[7420]: Added 1793 new messages to the database. Detected 6 file renames.
That is basically the entire mail spool destroyed at first (283 898 messages), and then bits and pieces of it progressively re-added (134 645 messages), somehow, so 149 253 mails were lost, presumably.

Recovery I disabled the services all over the place:
systemctl --user --now disable smd-pull.service smd-pull.timer smd-push.service smd-push.timer notmuch-new.service notmuch-new.timer
(Well, technically, I did that only on angela, as I thought the problem was there. Luckily, curie kept going but it seems like it was harmless.) I made a backup of the mail spool on curie:
tar cf - Maildir/   pv -s 14G   gzip -c > Maildir.tgz
Then I crossed my fingers and ran smd-push -v -s, as that was suggested by smd error codes themselves. That thankfully started restoring mail. It failed a few times on weird cases of files being duplicates, but I resolved this by following the instructions. Or mostly: I actually deleted the files instead of moving them, which made smd even unhappier (if there ever was such a thing). I had to recreate some of those files, so, lesson learned: do follow the advice smd gives you, even if it seems useless or strange. But then smd-push was humming along, uploading tens of thousands of messages, saturating the upload in the office, refilling the mail spool on the server... yaay!... ? Except... well, of course that didn't quite work: the mail spool in the office eventually started to grow beyond the size of the mail spool on the workstation. That is what smd-push eventually settled on:
default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: error::context(receive) probable-cause(network) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(retry)
default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: error::context(receive) probable-cause(network) human-intervention(avoidable) suggested-actions(retry)
default: smd-client@smd-server-anarcat: TAGS: stats::new-mails(151697), del-mails(0), bytes-received(7539147811), xdelta-received(10881198)
It recreated 151 697 emails, adding about 2000 emails to the pool, kind of from nowhere at all. On marcos, before:
ncdu 1.13 ~ Use the arrow keys to navigate, press ? for help
--- /home/anarcat/Maildir ------------------------------------
    4,0 GiB [##########] /.notmuch
  717,3 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2014
  498,2 MiB [#         ] /.feeds.debian-planet
  453,1 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2012
  414,5 MiB [#         ] /.debian
  408,2 MiB [#         ] /.quoifaire
  389,8 MiB [          ] /.rapports
  356,6 MiB [          ] /.tor
  182,6 MiB [          ] /.koumbit
  179,8 MiB [          ] /tmp
   56,8 MiB [          ] /.nn
   43,0 MiB [          ] /.act-mtl
   32,6 MiB [          ] /.feeds.sysadvent
   31,7 MiB [          ] /.feeds.releases
   31,4 MiB [          ] /.Sent.2005
   26,3 MiB [          ] /.sage
   25,5 MiB [          ] /.freedombox
   24,0 MiB [          ] /.feeds.git-annex
   21,1 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2011
   19,1 MiB [          ] /.Sent.2003
   16,7 MiB [          ] /.bugtraq
   16,2 MiB [          ] /.mlug
 Total disk usage:   8,0 GiB  Apparent size:   7,6 GiB  Items: 184426
After:
ncdu 1.13 ~ Use the arrow keys to navigate, press ? for help
--- /home/anarcat/Maildir ------------------------------------
    4,7 GiB [##########] /.notmuch
    2,7 GiB [#####     ] /.junk
    1,9 GiB [###       ] /cur
  717,3 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2014
  659,3 MiB [#         ] /.Sent
  513,9 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2012
  498,2 MiB [#         ] /.feeds.debian-planet
  449,6 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2015
  414,5 MiB [          ] /.debian
  408,2 MiB [          ] /.quoifaire
  389,8 MiB [          ] /.rapports
  380,8 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2013
  356,6 MiB [          ] /.tor
  261,1 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2011
  240,9 MiB [          ] /.koumbit
  183,6 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2010
  179,8 MiB [          ] /tmp
  128,4 MiB [          ] /.lists
  106,1 MiB [          ] /.inso-interne
  103,0 MiB [          ] /.github
   75,0 MiB [          ] /.nanog
   69,8 MiB [          ] /.full-disclosure
 Total disk usage:  16,2 GiB  Apparent size:  15,5 GiB  Items: 341143
That is 156 717 files more. On curie:
ncdu 1.13 ~ Use the arrow keys to navigate, press ? for help
--- /home/anarcat/Maildir ------------------------------------------------------------------
    2,7 GiB [##########] /.junk
    2,3 GiB [########  ] /.notmuch
    1,9 GiB [######    ] /cur
  661,2 MiB [##        ] /.Archives.2014
  655,3 MiB [##        ] /.Sent
  512,0 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2012
  447,3 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2015
  438,5 MiB [#         ] /.feeds.debian-planet
  406,5 MiB [#         ] /.quoifaire
  383,6 MiB [#         ] /.debian
  378,6 MiB [#         ] /.Archives.2013
  303,3 MiB [#         ] /.tor
  296,0 MiB [#         ] /.rapports
  237,6 MiB [          ] /.koumbit
  233,2 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2011
  182,1 MiB [          ] /.Archives.2010
  127,0 MiB [          ] /.lists
  104,8 MiB [          ] /.inso-interne
  102,7 MiB [          ] /.register
   89,6 MiB [          ] /.github
   67,1 MiB [          ] /.full-disclosure
   66,5 MiB [          ] /.nanog
 Total disk usage:  13,3 GiB  Apparent size:  12,6 GiB  Items: 342465
Interestingly, there are more files, but less disk usage. It's possible the notmuch database there is more efficient. So maybe there's nothing to worry about. Last night's marcos backup has:
root@marcos:/home/anarcat# find /mnt/home/anarcat/Maildir   pv -l   wc -l
 341k 0:00:16 [20,4k/s] [                             <=>                                                                                                                                     ]
341040
... 341040 files, which seems about right, considering some mail was delivered during the day. An audit can be performed with hashdeep:
borg mount /media/sdb2/borg/::marcos-auto-2021-03-22 /mnt
hashdeep -c sha256 -r /mnt/home/anarcat/Maildir   pv -l -s 341k > Maildir-backup-manifest.txt
And then compared with:
hashdeep -c sha256 -k Maildir-backup-manifest.txt Maildir/
Some extra files should show up in the Maildir, and very few should actually be missing, because I shouldn't have deleted mail from the previous day the next day, or at least very few. The actual summary hashdeep gave me was:
hashdeep: Audit failed
   Input files examined: 0
  Known files expecting: 0
          Files matched: 339080
Files partially matched: 0
            Files moved: 782
        New files found: 107
  Known files not found: 106
So 106 files added, 107 deleted. Seems good enough for me... Postfix was stopped at Mar 22 21:12:59 to try and stop external events from confusing things even further. I reviewed the delivery log to see if mail that came in during the problem window disappeared:
grep 'dovecot:.*stored mail into mailbox' /var/log/mail.log  
  tail -20  
  sed 's/.*msgid=<//;s/>.*//'   
  while read msgid; do 
    notmuch count --exclude=false id:$msgid  
      grep 0 && echo $msgid missing;
  done
And things looked okay. Now of course if we go further back, we find mail I actually deleted (because I do do that sometimes), so it's hard to use this log as an audit trail. We can only hope that the curie spool is sufficiently coherent to be relied on. Worst case, we'll have to restore from last night's backup, but that's getting far away now: I get hundreds of mails a day in that mail spool, and reseting back to last night does not seem like a good idea. A dry run of smd-pull on angela seems to agree that it's missing some files:
default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(154914), del-mails(0), bytes-received(0), xdelta-received(0)
... a number of mails somewhere in between the other two, go figure. A "wet" run of this was started, without deletion (-n), which gave us:
default: smd-client@localhost: TAGS: stats::new-mails(154911), del-mails(0), bytes-received(7658160107), xdelta-received(10837609)
Strange that it sync'd three less emails, but that's still better than nothing, and we have a mail spool on angela again:
anarcat@angela:~(main)$ notmuch new
purging with prefix '.': spam moved (0), ham moved (0), deleted (0), done
Note: Ignoring non-mail file: /home/anarcat/Maildir//.uidvalidity
Processed 1779 total files in 26s (66 files/sec.).
Added 1190 new messages to the database. Removed 3 messages. Detected 593 file renames.
tagging with prefix '.': spam, sent, feeds, koumbit, tor, lists, rapports, folders, done.
Notice how only 1190 messages were re-added, that is because I killed notmuch before it had time to remove all those mails from its database.

Possible causes I am totally at a loss as to why smd started destroying everything like it did. But a few things come to mind:
  1. I rewired my office on that day.
  2. This meant unplugging curie, the workstation.
  3. It has a bad CMOS battery (known problem), so it jumped around the time continuum a few times, sometimes by years.
  4. The smd services are ran from a systemd unit with OnCalendar=*:0/2. I have heard that it's possible that major time jumps "pile up" execution of jobs, and it seems this happened in this case.
  5. It's possible that locking in smd is not as great as it could be, and that it corrupted its internal data structures on curie, which led it to command a destruction of the remote mail spool.
It's also possible that there was a disk failure on the server, marcos. But since it's running on a (software) RAID-1 array, and no errors have been found (according to dmesg), I don't think that's a plausible hypothesis.

Lessons learned
  1. follow what smd says, even if it seems useless or strange.
  2. trust but verify: just backup everything before you do anything, especially the largest data set.
  3. daily backups are not great for email, unless you're ready to lose a day of email (which I'm not).
  4. hashdeep is great. I keep finding new use cases for it. Last time it was to audit my camera SD card to make sure I didn't forget anything, and now this. it's fast and powerful.
  5. borg is great too. the FUSE mount was especially useful, and it was pretty fast to explore the backup, even through that overhead: checksumming 15GB of mail took about 35 minutes, which gives a respectable 8MB/s, probably bottlenecked by the crap external USB drive I use for backups (!).
  6. I really need to finish my backup system so that I have automated offsite backups, although in this case that would actually have been much slower (certainly not 8MB/s!).

Workarounds and solutions I setup fake-hwclock on curie, so that the next power failure will not upset my clock that badly. I am thinking of switching to ZFS or BTRFS for most of my filesystems, so that I can use filesystem snapshots (including remotely!) as a backup strategy. This seems so much more powerful than crawling the filesystem for changes, and allows for truly offsite backups protected from an attacker (hopefully). But it's a long way there. I'm also thinking of rebuilding my mail setup without smd. It's not the first time something like this happens with smd. It's the first time I am more confident it's the root cause of the problem, however, and it makes me really nervous for the future. I have used offlineimap in the past and it seems it was finally ported to Python 3 so that could be an option again. isync/mbsync is another option, which I tried before but do not remember why I didn't switch. A complete redesign with something like getmail and/or nncp could also be an option. But alas, I lack the time to go crazy with those experiments. Somehow, doing like everyone else and just going with Google still doesn't seem to be an option for me. Screw big tech. But I am afraid they will win, eventually. In any case, I'm just happy I got mail again, strangely.

10 March 2021

Dirk Eddelbuettel: RcppArmadillo 0.10.2.2.0 on CRAN: New Upstream Patch Release

armadillo image Armadillo is a powerful and expressive C++ template library for linear algebra aiming towards a good balance between speed and ease of use with a syntax deliberately close to a Matlab. RcppArmadillo integrates this library with the R environment and language and is widely used by (currently) 841 other packages on CRAN. This release brings us a second update within the Armadillo 10.2 series, one month after the initial release. Upstream work has commenced at a 10.3 series with first pre-releases which we are currently testing. If possible, CRAN release will continue to be at least one month apart (such as this time) but we continue to make interim releases available on the Rcpp drat repo repo. The full set of changes follows.

Changes in RcppArmadillo version 0.10.2.2.0 (2021-03-09)
  • Upgraded to Armadillo release 10.2.2 (Cicada Swarm)
    • faster handling of subcubes
    • added tgamma()
    • added .brief_print() for abridged printing of matrices & cubes
    • expanded forms of trimatu() and trimatl() with diagonal specification to handle sparse matrices
    • expanded eigs_sym() and eigs_gen() with optional shift-invert mode
  • Removed debian/ directory from repository as packaging is on salsa.debian.org.
  • Relaxed tolerance on two cube tests on Windows to accomodate new 'gcc10-UCRT' builder.

Courtesy of my CRANberries, there is a diffstat report relative to previous release. More detailed information is on the RcppArmadillo page. Questions, comments etc should go to the rcpp-devel mailing list off the R-Forge page. If you like this or other open-source work I do, you can sponsor me at GitHub.

This post by Dirk Eddelbuettel originated on his Thinking inside the box blog. Please report excessive re-aggregation in third-party for-profit settings.

7 March 2021

Louis-Philippe V ronneau: New Year, New OpenPGP Key

-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA512
Sun, 07 Mar 2021 13:00:17 -0500
I've recently set up a new OpenPGP key and will be transitioning away from my
old one.
It is a chance for me to start using a OpenPGP hardware token and to transition
to a new personal email address (my main public contact is still my
 @debian.org  address).
Please note that I've partially redacted some email addresses from this
statement to minimise the amount of spam I receive. It shouldn't be hard for
actual humans to follow the instructions below to find the complete addresses.
The old key will continue to be valid for a few months, but will eventually be
revoked.
You might know my old OpenPGP certificate as:
pub   rsa4096/0x7AEAC4EC6AAA0A97 2014-12-22 [expires: 2021-06-02]
      Key fingerprint = 677F 54F1 FA86 81AD 8EC0  BCE6 7AEA C4EC 6AAA 0A97
uid       Louis-Philippe V ronneau <REDACTED@riseup.net>
uid       Louis-Philippe V ronneau (alias) <REDACTED@riseup.net>
uid       Louis-Philippe V ronneau (debian) <REDACTED@debian.org>
My new OpenPGP certificate is:
pub   ed25519/0xE1E5457C8BAD4113 2021-03-06 [expires: 2022-03-06]
      Key fingerprint = F64D 61D3 21F3 CB48 9156  753D E1E5 457C 8BAD 4113
uid       Louis-Philippe V ronneau <REDACTED@veronneau.org>
uid       Louis-Philippe V ronneau <REDACTED@debian.org>
These days, I mostly use my key for Debian and to sign git commit. I don't
really expect you to sign my new key if you had signed my old one.
I've published the new certificate on keys.openpgp.org as well as on my
personal website. You can fetch it like this:
    $ wget -O- https://veronneau.org/media/openpgp.key   gpg --import
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
iQIzBAEBCgAdFiEEZ39U8fqGga2OwLzmeurE7GqqCpcFAmBFFM8ACgkQeurE7Gqq
CpcuchAAscAeszdtA+TlCI4YvK5nlk+nJnCnNBSnl7Et+jiNjq8kB/Fud+dWMTXC
Zag8oJkalbbxub0BT0bEAn+BiBunu58E0gd0Xq4syTbqZ5o5IN17S/tfxCD0k1hf
ewrnYZ2l0i5g4YvHGKC+Xv4D+Z84BylnIRaXHqlUdluOVfVYDfLybOAqoktO/KUH
I+vQBwXj0Fr/QAtgiz5Nwh/YHFiU9xMSvr5ozRwAFs6+xfIqFHuVPRRkEN5iVo4D
kkMIz+kFfkoh4aWIP4dgAu39XnEgxwTR9J+4yE8TzCCMzO7xCK0X6vqgPAxYMPvb
RuP4FnGWOnGnlcudCUAUkOaryrwRi+dPQTnNICHTYsvVc7dg+W0EhVUkwEuuEwpI
qtcB/Y5AGhqK0Cc11uXiFjIQwLTgwcUez4F0xrGeqsTtAM5gyRup2w0jbocTuYSh
ZRv/2zwrq/S3xVrUYGqdT+L5odmkBzz9zOwY5WlU2H9CMFOdh71XOv9wWQXan9ou
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28 February 2021

Jamie McClelland: From openbox to sway

I've been running the Openbox window manager since 2005. That's longer then I've lived in any one apartment in my entire life! However, over the years I've been bracing for a change. It seems clear the Wayland is the future, although when that future is supposed to begin is much more hazy. Really, I've felt a bit like a ping pong ball, from panicking over whether Xorg is abandoned (with a follow up from a X server maintainer) to anxiously wondering if literally everything will break the moment I switch to Wayland. In fact, I started this blog post over a year ago when I first decided to switch from the Openbox to Sway. This is my third major attempt to make the change and I think it will finally stick this time. In retrospect, it would have been more sensible to first switch from openbox to i3 (which is a huge transition) and then from i3 to sway, but I decided to dive into the deep end with both changes. So... I'm on debian bullseye so I installed sway and friends (from sid). Then I copied /etc/sway/config to ~/.config/sway/config. I start openbox after logging in with exec startx so after rebooting, I ran exec sway and to my astonishment sway started. Hooray! However, I found that ssh-agent wasn't running so I couldn't ssh into any servers. That's kinda a problem. Launching ssh-agent under openbox was buried deep in /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90x11-common_ssh-agent and clearly was not going to happen via wayland. Since programs using ssh-agent depend on the environment variables SSH_AUTH_SOCK and SSH_AGENT_PID being globally available I thought I could simply run $(eval ssh-agent) via my tty terminal before running exec sway. And, that would have worked. Except... I like to add my keys via ssh-add -c so that everytime my key is being used I get a ssh-askpass prompt to confirm the use. It seems that since ssh-add is started before a window manager is running, it can't run the prompt. Ok, we can fix this. After searching the web, I came upon a solution of running ssh-agent via systemctl --user:
# This service myst be started manually after sway
# starts.
[Unit]
Description=OpenSSH private key agent
IgnoreOnIsolate=true
[Service]
Type=forking
Environment=SSH_AUTH_SOCK=%t/ssh-agent.socket
ExecStart=/usr/bin/ssh-agent -a $SSH_AUTH_SOCK
Then, in my ~/.bashrc file I have:
if [ -n WAYLAND_DISPLAY ]; then
  export SSH_AUTH_SOCK=/run/user/1000/ssh-agent.socket
fi
I think $SSH_AGENT_PID is only used by ssh-agent to kill itself. Now that is running via systemd - killing it should be do-able without a global environment variable. Done? Hardly. I've been using impass (nee assword) happily for years but alas it is tightly integrated with xdo and xclip. So... I've switched to keepassxc which works out of the box with wayland. My next challenge was the status bar. Farewell faithful tint2. One of the reasons I failed on my first two attempts to switch to Sway was the difficulty of getting the swaybar to work how I wanted, particularly with nm-applet. Two things allowed me to move forward: Next up: the waybar clock module doesn't work, but that is easy enough to work around. Replacing my uses of xclip with wl-clipboard was a little tedious but really not that difficult. Getting my screen shot and screen recorder functionality was a bit harder. I did a lot of searching before I finally found and compiled both swappy, screen shot and wf-recorder. In the course of all my adventures, I came across the following helpful tips:
Updates
  1. I've installed libreoffice-gtk3 to ensure libre office runs under wayland
  2. I've installed the latest Gimp via flatpak to get proper wayland support
  3. I've exported MOZ_ENABLE_WAYLAND to ensure firefox works properly.
  4. I've found that passing -c to my ssh-add command to ensure I am prompted for each use of my key seems to cause sway to crash intermittently.
  5. I am working on a questionable work around to get screen sharing to work in zoom. I haven't actually tried it on a real zoom call yet.
  6. Speaking of screen sharing - when using Firefox, I can only share Xwayland screens. Firefox is running under wayland so I can't share it. Chromium is running under xwayland, so I have to use Chromium when screen sharing.
  7. Wait, scratch that about screen sharing in Firefox. I've installed xdg-desktop-portal-wlr, added export XDG_CURRENT_DESKTOP=sway and export XDG_SESSION_TYPE=wayland to my .bashrc, and after hours of frustration, realize that I needed to configured firejail to allow it so that I can share my entire screen in Firefox. It doesn't yet support sharing a specific window, so I still have to keep chromium around for that (and Chromium can only share xwayland windows). Sigh. Oh, one more thing about Firefox: the option to choose what to share doesn't have "Entire Screen" as an option, you are just supposed to know that you should choose "Use operating system settings".
  8. I still am getting weekly crashes. Some of them I've fixed by switching to wayland friendly versions (e.g. Libre Office and Gimp) but others I haven't yet tracked down.
  9. My keyboard does not have an altgr key, so even though I have selected the "English (US) - English (intl., with AltGr dead keys)" I can't get accent marks. I went down a rabbit hole of trying to re-map the Alt key to the right of my space bar but it all seemed too complicated. So - I found a way easier approach. In my ~/.config/sway/config file I have: bindsym Mod4+e exec wtype " ". I have repeated that line for the main accent marks I need.
  10. Due to a Firefox Bug, when I share my desktop or mic or camera, the sharing indicator expands like a normal tiling window instead of remaining a tiny little box on each desktop reminding me that I'm sharing something. I'd prefer to have it be a tiny little box, but since I can't figure that out, I've disabled it by typing about:config in the Firefox location window, searching for privacy.webrtc.legacyGlobalIndicator and setting it to False. The reddit thread also suggested finding privacy.webrtc.hideGlobalIndicator and setting it to True, but that setting doesn't seem to be available and setting the first one alone seems to do the trick.
  11. Oh, one more environment variable to set: GDK_BACKEND=wayland,x11. First I just set it to wayland to get gtk3 apps to use wayland (like gajim). But that broke electron apps (like signal) which notice that variable but don't have a way to display via wayland (at least not yet). Setting it to "wayland,x11" shows the priority. Thank you ubuntu community.
  12. I've also finally consolidated where my environment variables go. I've added them all to ~/.config/sway/env. That seems like an official sway place to put them, but sway doesn't pay any attention to them. So I start sway via my own bash script which sources that file via [ -f "$HOME/.config/sway/env" ] && . "$HOME/.config/sway/env" before exec'ing sway.

27 February 2021

Russell Coker: Links February 2021

Elestic Search gets a new license to deal with AWS not paying them [1]. Of course AWS will fork the products in question. We need some anti-trust action against Amazon. Big Think has an interesting article about what appears to be ritualistic behaviour in chompanzees [2]. The next issue is that if they are developing a stone-age culture does that mean we should treat them differently from other less developed animals? Last Week in AWS has an informative article about Parler s new serverless architecture [3]. They explain why it s not easy to move away from a cloud platform even for a service that s designed to not be dependent on it. The moral of the story is that running a service so horrible that none of the major cloud providers will touch it doesn t scale. Patheos has an insightful article about people who spread the most easily disproved lies for their religion [4]. A lot of political commentary nowadays is like that. Indi Samarajiva wrote an insightful article comparing terrorism in Sri Lanka with the right-wing terrorism in the US [5]. The conclusion is that it s only just starting in the US. Belling Cat has an interesting article about the FSB attempt to murder Russian presidential candidate Alexey Navalny [6]. Russ Allbery wrote an interesting review of Anti-Social, a book about the work of an anti-social behavior officer in the UK [7]. The book (and Russ s review) has some good insights into how crime can be reduced. Of course a large part of that is allowing people who want to use drugs to do so in an affordable way. Informative post from Electrical Engineering Materials about the difference between KVW and KW [8]. KVA is bigger than KW, sometimes a lot bigger. Arstechnica has an interesting but not surprising article about a supply chain attack on software development [9]. Exploiting the way npm and similar tools resolve dependencies to make them download hostile code. There is no possibility of automatic downloads being OK for security unless they are from known good sites that don t allow random people to upload. Any sort of system that allows automatic download from sites like the Node or Python repositories, Github, etc is ripe for abuse. I think the correct solution is to have dependencies installed manually or automatically from a distribution like Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, etc where there have been checks on the source of the source. Devon Price wrote an insightful Medium article Laziness Does Not Exist about the psychological factors which can lead to poor results that many people interpret as laziness [10]. Everyone who supervises other people s work should read this.

18 February 2021

Jonathan McDowell: Hacking and Bricking the EE Opsrey 2 Mini

I ve mentioned in the past my twisted EE network setup from when I moved in to my current house. The 4GEE WiFi Mini (also known as the EE Osprey 2 Mini or the EE40VB, and actually a rebadged Alcatel Y853VB) has been sitting unused since then, so I figured I d see about trying to get a shell on it. TL;DR: Of course it s running Linux, there s a couple of test points internally which bring out the serial console, but after finding those and logging in I discovered it s running ADB on port 5555 quite happily available without authentication both via wifi and the USB port. So if you have physical or local network access, instant root shell. Well done, folks. And then I bricked it before I could do anything more interesting. There s a lack of information about this device out there - most of the links I can find are around removing the SIM lock - so I thought I d document the pieces I found just in case anyone else is trying to figure it out. It s based around a Qualcomm MDM9607 SoC, paired with 64M RAM and 256M NAND flash. Wifi is via an RTL8192ES. Kernel is 3.18.20. Busybox is v1.23.1. It s running dnsmasq but I didn t grab the version. Of course there s no source or offer of source provided. Taking it apart is fairly easy. There s a single screw to remove, just beside the SIM slot. The coloured rim can then be carefully pried away from the back, revealing the battery. There are then 4 screws in the corners which need removed in order to be able to lift out the actual PCB and gain access to the serial console test points. EE40VB PCB serial console test points My mistake was going poking around trying to figure out where the updates are downloaded from - I know I m running a slightly older release than what s current, and the device can do an automatic download + update. Top tip; don t run Jrdrecovery. It ll error on finding /cache/update.zip and wipe the main partition anyway. That ll leave you in a boot loop where the device boots the recovery partition which tries to install /cache/update.zip which of course still doesn t exist. So. Where next? First, I need to get the device into a state where I can actually do something other than watch it boot into recovery, fail to flash and reboot. Best guess at present is to try and get it to enter the Qualcomm EDL (Emergency Download) mode. That might be possible with a custom USB cable that grounds D+ on boot. Alternatively I need to probe some of the other test points on the PCB and see if grounding any of those helps enter EDL mode. I then need a suitable firehose OEM-signed programmer image. And then I need to actually get hold of a proper EE40VB firmware image, either via one of the OTA update files or possibly via an Alcatel ADSU image (though no idea how to get hold of one, other than by posting to a random GSM device forum and hoping for the kindness of strangers). More updates if/when I make progress
Qualcomm bootloader log
Format: Log Type - Time(microsec) - Message - Optional Info
Log Type: B - Since Boot(Power On Reset),  D - Delta,  S - Statistic
S - QC_IMAGE_VERSION_STRING=BOOT.BF.3.1.2-00053
S - IMAGE_VARIANT_STRING=LAATANAZA
S - OEM_IMAGE_VERSION_STRING=linux3
S - Boot Config, 0x000002e1
B -    105194 - SBL1, Start
D -     61885 - QSEE Image Loaded, Delta - (451964 Bytes)
D -     30286 - RPM Image Loaded, Delta - (151152 Bytes)
B -    459330 - Roger:boot_jrd_oem_main
B -    461526 - Welcome to key_check_poweron!!!
B -    466436 - REG0x00, rc=47
B -    469120 - REG0x01, rc=1f
B -    472018 - REG0x02, rc=1c
B -    474885 - REG0x03, rc=47
B -    477782 - REG0x04, rc=b2
B -    480558 - REG0x05, rc=
B -    483272 - REG0x06, rc=9e
B -    486139 - REG0x07, rc=
B -    488854 - REG0x08, rc=a4
B -    491721 - REG0x09, rc=80
B -    494130 - bq24295_probe: vflt/vsys/vprechg=0mV/0mV/0mV, tprechg/tfastchg=0Min/0Min, [0C, 0C]
B -    511546 - come to calculate vol and temperature!!
B -    511637 - ##############battery_core_convert_vntc: NTC_voltage=1785690
B -    517280 - battery_core_convert_vntc: <-44C, 1785690uV>, present=0
B -    529358 - bq24295_set_current_limit: setting=0mA, mode=-1, input/fastchg/prechg/termchg=-1mA/0mA/0mA/0mA
B -    534360 - bq24295_set_charge_current, rc=0,reg_val=0,i=0
B -    539636 - bq24295_enable_charge: setting=0, chg_enable=-1, otg_enable=0
B -    546072 - bq24295_enable_charging: enable_charging=0
B -    552172 - bq24295_set_current_limit: setting=0mA, mode=-1, input/fastchg/prechg/termchg=-1mA/0mA/0mA/0mA
B -    561566 - bq24295_set_charge_current, rc=0,reg_val=0,i=0
B -    567056 - bq24295_enable_charge: setting=0, chg_enable=0, otg_enable=0
B -    579286 - come to calculate vol and temperature!!
B -    579378 - ##############battery_core_convert_vntc: NTC_voltage=1785777
B -    585539 - battery_core_convert_vntc: <-44C, 1785777uV>, present=0
B -    597617 - charge_main: battery is plugout!!
B -    597678 - Welcome to pca955x_probe!!!
B -    601063 - pca955x_probe: PCA955X probed successfully!
D -     27511 - APPSBL Image Loaded, Delta - (179348 Bytes)
B -    633271 - QSEE Execution, Start
D -       213 - QSEE Execution, Delta
B -    638944 - >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Start writting JRD RECOVERY BOOT
B -    650107 - >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Start writting  RECOVERY BOOT
B -    653218 - >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>read_buf[0] == 0
B -    659044 - SBL1, End
D -    556137 - SBL1, Delta
S - Throughput, 2000 KB/s  (782884 Bytes,  278155 us)
S - DDR Frequency, 240 MHz
littlekernel aboot log
Android Bootloader - UART_DM Initialized!!!
[0] welcome to lk
[0] SCM call: 0x2000601 failed with :fffffffc
[0] Failed to initialize SCM
[10] platform_init()
[10] target_init()
[10] smem ptable found: ver: 4 len: 17
[10] ERROR: No devinfo partition found
[10] Neither 'config' nor 'frp' partition found
[30] voltage of NTC  is 1789872!
[30] voltage of BAT  is 3179553!
[30] usb present is 1!
[30] Loading (boot) image (4171776): start
[530] Loading (boot) image (4171776): done
[540] DTB Total entry: 25, DTB version: 3
[540] Using DTB entry 0x00000129/00010000/0x00000008/0 for device 0x00000129/00010000/0x00010008/0
[560] JRD_CHG_OFF_FEATURE!
[560] come to jrd_target_pause_for_battery_charge!
[570] power_on_status.hard_reset = 0x0
[570] power_on_status.smpl = 0x0
[570] power_on_status.rtc = 0x0
[580] power_on_status.dc_chg = 0x0
[580] power_on_status.usb_chg = 0x0
[580] power_on_status.pon1 = 0x1
[590] power_on_status.cblpwr = 0x0
[590] power_on_status.kpdpwr = 0x0
[590] power_on_status.bugflag = 0x0
[590] cmdline: noinitrd  rw console=ttyHSL0,115200,n8 androidboot.hardware=qcom ehci-hcd.park=3 msm_rtb.filter=0x37 lpm_levels.sleep_disabled=1  earlycon=msm_hsl_uart,0x78b3000  androidboot.serialno=7e6ba58c androidboot.baseband=msm rootfstype=ubifs rootflags=b
[620] Updating device tree: start
[720] Updating device tree: done
[720] booting linux @ 0x80008000, ramdisk @ 0x80008000 (0), tags/device tree @ 0x81e00000
Linux kernel console boot log
[    0.000000] Booting Linux on physical CPU 0x0
[    0.000000] Linux version 3.18.20 (linux3@linux3) (gcc version 4.9.2 (GCC) ) #1 PREEMPT Thu Aug 10 11:57:07 CST 2017
[    0.000000] CPU: ARMv7 Processor [410fc075] revision 5 (ARMv7), cr=10c53c7d
[    0.000000] CPU: PIPT / VIPT nonaliasing data cache, VIPT aliasing instruction cache
[    0.000000] Machine model: Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. MDM 9607 MTP
[    0.000000] Early serial console at I/O port 0x0 (options '')
[    0.000000] bootconsole [uart0] enabled
[    0.000000] Reserved memory: reserved region for node 'modem_adsp_region@0': base 0x82a00000, size 56 MiB
[    0.000000] Reserved memory: reserved region for node 'external_image_region@0': base 0x87c00000, size 4 MiB
[    0.000000] Removed memory: created DMA memory pool at 0x82a00000, size 56 MiB
[    0.000000] Reserved memory: initialized node modem_adsp_region@0, compatible id removed-dma-pool
[    0.000000] Removed memory: created DMA memory pool at 0x87c00000, size 4 MiB
[    0.000000] Reserved memory: initialized node external_image_region@0, compatible id removed-dma-pool
[    0.000000] cma: Reserved 4 MiB at 0x87800000
[    0.000000] Memory policy: Data cache writeback
[    0.000000] CPU: All CPU(s) started in SVC mode.
[    0.000000] Built 1 zonelists in Zone order, mobility grouping on.  Total pages: 17152
[    0.000000] Kernel command line: noinitrd  rw console=ttyHSL0,115200,n8 androidboot.hardware=qcom ehci-hcd.park=3 msm_rtb.filter=0x37 lpm_levels.sleep_disabled=1  earlycon=msm_hsl_uart,0x78b3000  androidboot.serialno=7e6ba58c androidboot.baseband=msm rootfstype=ubifs rootflags=bulk_read root=ubi0:rootfs ubi.mtd=16
[    0.000000] PID hash table entries: 512 (order: -1, 2048 bytes)
[    0.000000] Dentry cache hash table entries: 16384 (order: 4, 65536 bytes)
[    0.000000] Inode-cache hash table entries: 8192 (order: 3, 32768 bytes)
[    0.000000] Memory: 54792K/69632K available (5830K kernel code, 399K rwdata, 2228K rodata, 276K init, 830K bss, 14840K reserved)
[    0.000000] Virtual kernel memory layout:
[    0.000000]     vector  : 0xffff0000 - 0xffff1000   (   4 kB)
[    0.000000]     fixmap  : 0xffc00000 - 0xfff00000   (3072 kB)
[    0.000000]     vmalloc : 0xc8800000 - 0xff000000   ( 872 MB)
[    0.000000]     lowmem  : 0xc0000000 - 0xc8000000   ( 128 MB)
[    0.000000]     modules : 0xbf000000 - 0xc0000000   (  16 MB)
[    0.000000]       .text : 0xc0008000 - 0xc07e6c38   (8060 kB)
[    0.000000]       .init : 0xc07e7000 - 0xc082c000   ( 276 kB)
[    0.000000]       .data : 0xc082c000 - 0xc088fdc0   ( 400 kB)
[    0.000000]        .bss : 0xc088fe84 - 0xc095f798   ( 831 kB)
[    0.000000] SLUB: HWalign=64, Order=0-3, MinObjects=0, CPUs=1, Nodes=1
[    0.000000] Preemptible hierarchical RCU implementation.
[    0.000000] NR_IRQS:16 nr_irqs:16 16
[    0.000000] GIC CPU mask not found - kernel will fail to boot.
[    0.000000] GIC CPU mask not found - kernel will fail to boot.
[    0.000000] mpm_init_irq_domain(): Cannot find irq controller for qcom,gpio-parent
[    0.000000] MPM 1 irq mapping errored -517
[    0.000000] Architected mmio timer(s) running at 19.20MHz (virt).
[    0.000011] sched_clock: 56 bits at 19MHz, resolution 52ns, wraps every 3579139424256ns
[    0.007975] Switching to timer-based delay loop, resolution 52ns
[    0.013969] Switched to clocksource arch_mem_counter
[    0.019687] Console: colour dummy device 80x30
[    0.023344] Calibrating delay loop (skipped), value calculated using timer frequency.. 38.40 BogoMIPS (lpj=192000)
[    0.033666] pid_max: default: 32768 minimum: 301
[    0.038411] Mount-cache hash table entries: 1024 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    0.044902] Mountpoint-cache hash table entries: 1024 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    0.052445] CPU: Testing write buffer coherency: ok
[    0.057057] Setting up static identity map for 0x8058aac8 - 0x8058ab20
[    0.064242]
[    0.064242] **********************************************************
[    0.071251] **   NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE   **
[    0.077817] **                                                      **
[    0.084302] ** trace_printk() being used. Allocating extra memory.  **
[    0.090781] **                                                      **
[    0.097320] ** This means that this is a DEBUG kernel and it is     **
[    0.103802] ** unsafe for produciton use.                           **
[    0.110339] **                                                      **
[    0.116850] ** If you see this message and you are not debugging    **
[    0.123333] ** the kernel, report this immediately to your vendor!  **
[    0.129870] **                                                      **
[    0.136380] **   NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE NOTICE   **
[    0.142865] **********************************************************
[    0.150225] MSM Memory Dump base table set up
[    0.153739] MSM Memory Dump apps data table set up
[    0.168125] VFP support v0.3: implementor 41 architecture 2 part 30 variant 7 rev 5
[    0.176332] pinctrl core: initialized pinctrl subsystem
[    0.180930] regulator-dummy: no parameters
[    0.215338] NET: Registered protocol family 16
[    0.220475] DMA: preallocated 256 KiB pool for atomic coherent allocations
[    0.284034] cpuidle: using governor ladder
[    0.314026] cpuidle: using governor menu
[    0.344024] cpuidle: using governor qcom
[    0.355452] msm_watchdog b017000.qcom,wdt: wdog absent resource not present
[    0.361656] msm_watchdog b017000.qcom,wdt: MSM Watchdog Initialized
[    0.371373] irq: no irq domain found for /soc/pinctrl@1000000 !
[    0.381268] spmi_pmic_arb 200f000.qcom,spmi: PMIC Arb Version-2 0x20010000
[    0.389733] platform 4080000.qcom,mss: assigned reserved memory node modem_adsp_region@0
[    0.397409] mem_acc_corner: 0 <--> 0 mV
[    0.401937] hw-breakpoint: found 5 (+1 reserved) breakpoint and 4 watchpoint registers.
[    0.408966] hw-breakpoint: maximum watchpoint size is 8 bytes.
[    0.416287] __of_mpm_init(): MPM driver mapping exists
[    0.420940] msm_rpm_glink_dt_parse: qcom,rpm-glink compatible not matches
[    0.427235] msm_rpm_dev_probe: APSS-RPM communication over SMD
[    0.432977] smd_open() before smd_init()
[    0.437544] msm_mpm_dev_probe(): Cannot get clk resource for XO: -517
[    0.445730] smd_channel_probe_now: allocation table not initialized
[    0.453100] mdm9607_s1: 1050 <--> 1350 mV at 1225 mV normal idle
[    0.458566] spm_regulator_probe: name=mdm9607_s1, range=LV, voltage=1225000 uV, mode=AUTO, step rate=4800 uV/us
[    0.468817] cpr_efuse_init: apc_corner: efuse_addr = 0x000a4000 (len=0x1000)
[    0.475353] cpr_read_fuse_revision: apc_corner: fuse revision = 2
[    0.481345] cpr_parse_speed_bin_fuse: apc_corner: [row: 37]: 0x79e8bd327e6ba58c, speed_bits = 4
[    0.490124] cpr_pvs_init: apc_corner: pvs voltage: [1050000 1100000 1275000] uV
[    0.497342] cpr_pvs_init: apc_corner: ceiling voltage: [1050000 1225000 1350000] uV
[    0.504979] cpr_pvs_init: apc_corner: floor voltage: [1050000 1050000 1150000] uV
[    0.513125] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    0.518335] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: error on clk_get(core_clk):-517
[    0.524478] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: error probe() failed with err:-517
[    0.531111] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    0.536788] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: error on clk_get(core_clk):-517
[    0.542886] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: error probe() failed with err:-517
[    0.549618] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    0.555202] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: error on clk_get(core_clk):-517
[    0.561374] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: error probe() failed with err:-517
[    0.570613] msm-thermal soc:qcom,msm-thermal: msm_thermal:Failed reading node=/soc/qcom,msm-thermal, key=qcom,core-limit-temp. err=-22. KTM continues
[    0.583049] msm-thermal soc:qcom,msm-thermal: probe_therm_reset:Failed reading node=/soc/qcom,msm-thermal, key=qcom,therm-reset-temp err=-22. KTM continues
[    0.596926] msm_thermal:msm_thermal_dev_probe Failed reading node=/soc/qcom,msm-thermal, key=qcom,online-hotplug-core. err:-517
[    0.609370] sps:sps is ready.
[    0.613137] msm_rpm_glink_dt_parse: qcom,rpm-glink compatible not matches
[    0.619020] msm_rpm_dev_probe: APSS-RPM communication over SMD
[    0.625773] mdm9607_s2: 750 <--> 1275 mV at 750 mV normal idle
[    0.631584] mdm9607_s3_level: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.637085] mdm9607_s3_level_ao: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.643092] mdm9607_s3_floor_level: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.649512] mdm9607_s3_level_so: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.655750] mdm9607_s4: 1800 <--> 1950 mV at 1800 mV normal idle
[    0.661791] mdm9607_l1: 1250 mV normal idle
[    0.666090] mdm9607_l2: 1800 mV normal idle
[    0.670276] mdm9607_l3: 1800 mV normal idle
[    0.674541] mdm9607_l4: 3075 mV normal idle
[    0.678743] mdm9607_l5: 1700 <--> 3050 mV at 1700 mV normal idle
[    0.684904] mdm9607_l6: 1700 <--> 3050 mV at 1700 mV normal idle
[    0.690892] mdm9607_l7: 1700 <--> 1900 mV at 1700 mV normal idle
[    0.697036] mdm9607_l8: 1800 mV normal idle
[    0.701238] mdm9607_l9: 1200 <--> 1250 mV at 1200 mV normal idle
[    0.707367] mdm9607_l10: 1050 mV normal idle
[    0.711662] mdm9607_l11: 1800 mV normal idle
[    0.716089] mdm9607_l12_level: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.721717] mdm9607_l12_level_ao: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.727946] mdm9607_l12_level_so: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.734099] mdm9607_l12_floor_lebel: 0 <--> 0 mV at 0 mV normal idle
[    0.740706] mdm9607_l13: 1800 <--> 2850 mV at 2850 mV normal idle
[    0.746883] mdm9607_l14: 2650 <--> 3000 mV at 2650 mV normal idle
[    0.752515] msm_mpm_dev_probe(): Cannot get clk resource for XO: -517
[    0.759036] cpr_efuse_init: apc_corner: efuse_addr = 0x000a4000 (len=0x1000)
[    0.765807] cpr_read_fuse_revision: apc_corner: fuse revision = 2
[    0.771809] cpr_parse_speed_bin_fuse: apc_corner: [row: 37]: 0x79e8bd327e6ba58c, speed_bits = 4
[    0.780586] cpr_pvs_init: apc_corner: pvs voltage: [1050000 1100000 1275000] uV
[    0.787808] cpr_pvs_init: apc_corner: ceiling voltage: [1050000 1225000 1350000] uV
[    0.795443] cpr_pvs_init: apc_corner: floor voltage: [1050000 1050000 1150000] uV
[    0.803094] cpr_init_cpr_parameters: apc_corner: up threshold = 2, down threshold = 3
[    0.810752] cpr_init_cpr_parameters: apc_corner: CPR is enabled by default.
[    0.817687] cpr_init_cpr_efuse: apc_corner: [row:65] = 0x15000277277383
[    0.824272] cpr_init_cpr_efuse: apc_corner: CPR disable fuse = 0
[    0.830225] cpr_init_cpr_efuse: apc_corner: Corner[1]: ro_sel = 0, target quot = 631
[    0.837976] cpr_init_cpr_efuse: apc_corner: Corner[2]: ro_sel = 0, target quot = 631
[    0.845703] cpr_init_cpr_efuse: apc_corner: Corner[3]: ro_sel = 0, target quot = 899
[    0.853592] cpr_config: apc_corner: Timer count: 0x17700 (for 5000 us)
[    0.860426] apc_corner: 0 <--> 0 mV
[    0.864044] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    0.869261] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: error on clk_get(core_clk):-517
[    0.875492] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: error probe() failed with err:-517
[    0.882225] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    0.887775] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: error on clk_get(core_clk):-517
[    0.893941] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: error probe() failed with err:-517
[    0.900719] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    0.906256] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: error on clk_get(core_clk):-517
[    0.912430] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: error probe() failed with err:-517
[    0.919472] msm-thermal soc:qcom,msm-thermal: msm_thermal:Failed reading node=/soc/qcom,msm-thermal, key=qcom,core-limit-temp. err=-22. KTM continues
[    0.932372] msm-thermal soc:qcom,msm-thermal: probe_therm_reset:Failed reading node=/soc/qcom,msm-thermal,
key=qcom,therm-reset-temp err=-22. KTM continues
[    0.946361] msm_thermal:get_kernel_cluster_info CPU0 topology not initialized.
[    0.953824] cpu cpu0: dev_pm_opp_get_opp_count: device OPP not found (-19)
[    0.960300] msm_thermal:get_cpu_freq_plan_len Error reading CPU0 freq table len. error:-19
[    0.968533] msm_thermal:vdd_restriction_reg_init Defer vdd rstr freq init.
[    0.975846] cpu cpu0: dev_pm_opp_get_opp_count: device OPP not found (-19)
[    0.982219] msm_thermal:get_cpu_freq_plan_len Error reading CPU0 freq table len. error:-19
[    0.991378] cpu cpu0: dev_pm_opp_get_opp_count: device OPP not found (-19)
[    0.997544] msm_thermal:get_cpu_freq_plan_len Error reading CPU0 freq table len. error:-19
[    1.013642] qcom,gcc-mdm9607 1800000.qcom,gcc: Registered GCC clocks
[    1.019451] clock-a7 b010008.qcom,clock-a7: Speed bin: 4 PVS Version: 0
[    1.025693] a7ssmux: set OPP pair(400000000 Hz: 1 uV) on cpu0
[    1.031314] a7ssmux: set OPP pair(1305600000 Hz: 7 uV) on cpu0
[    1.038805] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    1.043587] AXI: msm_bus_scale_register_client(): msm_bus_scale_register_client: Bus driver not ready.
[    1.052935] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0 (not a problem)
[    1.062006] irq: no irq domain found for /soc/wcd9xxx-irq !
[    1.069884] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    1.074814] AXI: msm_bus_scale_register_client(): msm_bus_scale_register_client: Bus driver not ready.
[    1.083716] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0 (not a problem)
[    1.093850] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    1.098889] AXI: msm_bus_scale_register_client(): msm_bus_scale_register_client: Bus driver not ready.
[    1.107779] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0 (not a problem)
[    1.167871] KPI: Bootloader start count = 24097
[    1.171364] KPI: Bootloader end count = 48481
[    1.175855] KPI: Bootloader display count = 3884474147
[    1.180825] KPI: Bootloader load kernel count = 16420
[    1.185905] KPI: Kernel MPM timestamp = 105728
[    1.190286] KPI: Kernel MPM Clock frequency = 32768
[    1.195209] socinfo_print: v0.10, id=297, ver=1.0, raw_id=72, raw_ver=0, hw_plat=8, hw_plat_ver=65536
[    1.195209]  accessory_chip=0, hw_plat_subtype=0, pmic_model=65539, pmic_die_revision=131074 foundry_id=0 serial_number=2120983948
[    1.216731] sdcard_ext_vreg: no parameters
[    1.220555] rome_vreg: no parameters
[    1.224133] emac_lan_vreg: no parameters
[    1.228177] usbcore: registered new interface driver usbfs
[    1.233156] usbcore: registered new interface driver hub
[    1.238578] usbcore: registered new device driver usb
[    1.244507] cpufreq: driver msm up and running
[    1.248425] ION heap system created
[    1.251895] msm_bus_fabric_init_driver
[    1.262563] qcom,qpnp-power-on qpnp-power-on-c7303800: PMIC@SID0 Power-on reason: Triggered from PON1 (secondary PMIC) and 'cold' boot
[    1.273747] qcom,qpnp-power-on qpnp-power-on-c7303800: PMIC@SID0: Power-off reason: Triggered from UVLO (Under Voltage Lock Out)
[    1.285430] input: qpnp_pon as /devices/virtual/input/input0
[    1.291246] PMIC@SID0: PM8019 v2.2 options: 3, 2, 2, 2
[    1.296706] Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Driver Initialized.
[    1.302493] Add group failed
[    1.305291] cfg80211: Calling CRDA to update world regulatory domain
[    1.311216] cfg80211: World regulatory domain updated:
[    1.317109] Switched to clocksource arch_mem_counter
[    1.334091] cfg80211:  DFS Master region: unset
[    1.337418] cfg80211:   (start_freq - end_freq @ bandwidth), (max_antenna_gain, max_eirp), (dfs_cac_time)
[    1.354087] cfg80211:   (2402000 KHz - 2472000 KHz @ 40000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.361055] cfg80211:   (2457000 KHz - 2482000 KHz @ 40000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.370545] NET: Registered protocol family 2
[    1.374082] cfg80211:   (2474000 KHz - 2494000 KHz @ 20000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.381851] cfg80211:   (5170000 KHz - 5250000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.389876] cfg80211:   (5250000 KHz - 5330000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.397857] cfg80211:   (5490000 KHz - 5710000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.405841] cfg80211:   (5735000 KHz - 5835000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.413795] cfg80211:   (57240000 KHz - 63720000 KHz @ 2160000 KHz), (N/A, 0 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.422355] TCP established hash table entries: 1024 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.428921] TCP bind hash table entries: 1024 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.435192] TCP: Hash tables configured (established 1024 bind 1024)
[    1.441528] TCP: reno registered
[    1.444738] UDP hash table entries: 256 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.450521] UDP-Lite hash table entries: 256 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.456950] NET: Registered protocol family 1
[    1.462779] futex hash table entries: 256 (order: -1, 3072 bytes)
[    1.474555] msgmni has been set to 115
[    1.478551] Block layer SCSI generic (bsg) driver version 0.4 loaded (major 251)
[    1.485041] io scheduler noop registered
[    1.488818] io scheduler deadline registered
[    1.493200] io scheduler cfq registered (default)
[    1.502142] msm_rpm_log_probe: OK
[    1.506717] msm_serial_hs module loaded
[    1.509803] msm_serial_hsl_probe: detected port #0 (ttyHSL0)
[    1.515324] AXI: get_pdata(): Error: Client name not found
[    1.520626] AXI: msm_bus_cl_get_pdata(): client has to provide missing entry for successful registration
[    1.530171] msm_serial_hsl_probe: Bus scaling is disabled                      [    1.074814] AXI: msm_bus_scale_register_client(): msm_bus_scale_register_client: Bus driver not ready.
[    1.083716] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0 (not a problem)
[    1.093850] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: probing driver i2c-msm-v2
[    1.098889] AXI: msm_bus_scale_register_client(): msm_bus_scale_register_client: Bus driver not ready.
[    1.107779] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0 (not a problem)
[    1.167871] KPI: Bootloader start count = 24097
[    1.171364] KPI: Bootloader end count = 48481
[    1.175855] KPI: Bootloader display count = 3884474147
[    1.180825] KPI: Bootloader load kernel count = 16420
[    1.185905] KPI: Kernel MPM timestamp = 105728
[    1.190286] KPI: Kernel MPM Clock frequency = 32768
[    1.195209] socinfo_print: v0.10, id=297, ver=1.0, raw_id=72, raw_ver=0, hw_plat=8, hw_plat_ver=65536
[    1.195209]  accessory_chip=0, hw_plat_subtype=0, pmic_model=65539, pmic_die_revision=131074 foundry_id=0 serial_number=2120983948
[    1.216731] sdcard_ext_vreg: no parameters
[    1.220555] rome_vreg: no parameters
[    1.224133] emac_lan_vreg: no parameters
[    1.228177] usbcore: registered new interface driver usbfs
[    1.233156] usbcore: registered new interface driver hub
[    1.238578] usbcore: registered new device driver usb
[    1.244507] cpufreq: driver msm up and running
[    1.248425] ION heap system created
[    1.251895] msm_bus_fabric_init_driver
[    1.262563] qcom,qpnp-power-on qpnp-power-on-c7303800: PMIC@SID0 Power-on reason: Triggered from PON1 (secondary PMIC) and 'cold' boot
[    1.273747] qcom,qpnp-power-on qpnp-power-on-c7303800: PMIC@SID0: Power-off reason: Triggered from UVLO (Under Voltage Lock Out)
[    1.285430] input: qpnp_pon as /devices/virtual/input/input0
[    1.291246] PMIC@SID0: PM8019 v2.2 options: 3, 2, 2, 2
[    1.296706] Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Driver Initialized.
[    1.302493] Add group failed
[    1.305291] cfg80211: Calling CRDA to update world regulatory domain
[    1.311216] cfg80211: World regulatory domain updated:
[    1.317109] Switched to clocksource arch_mem_counter
[    1.334091] cfg80211:  DFS Master region: unset
[    1.337418] cfg80211:   (start_freq - end_freq @ bandwidth), (max_antenna_gain, max_eirp), (dfs_cac_time)
[    1.354087] cfg80211:   (2402000 KHz - 2472000 KHz @ 40000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.361055] cfg80211:   (2457000 KHz - 2482000 KHz @ 40000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.370545] NET: Registered protocol family 2
[    1.374082] cfg80211:   (2474000 KHz - 2494000 KHz @ 20000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.381851] cfg80211:   (5170000 KHz - 5250000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.389876] cfg80211:   (5250000 KHz - 5330000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.397857] cfg80211:   (5490000 KHz - 5710000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.405841] cfg80211:   (5735000 KHz - 5835000 KHz @ 80000 KHz), (N/A, 2000 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.413795] cfg80211:   (57240000 KHz - 63720000 KHz @ 2160000 KHz), (N/A, 0 mBm), (N/A)
[    1.422355] TCP established hash table entries: 1024 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.428921] TCP bind hash table entries: 1024 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.435192] TCP: Hash tables configured (established 1024 bind 1024)
[    1.441528] TCP: reno registered
[    1.444738] UDP hash table entries: 256 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.450521] UDP-Lite hash table entries: 256 (order: 0, 4096 bytes)
[    1.456950] NET: Registered protocol family 1
[    1.462779] futex hash table entries: 256 (order: -1, 3072 bytes)
[    1.474555] msgmni has been set to 115
[    1.478551] Block layer SCSI generic (bsg) driver version 0.4 loaded (major 251)
[    1.485041] io scheduler noop registered
[    1.488818] io scheduler deadline registered
[    1.493200] io scheduler cfq registered (default)
[    1.502142] msm_rpm_log_probe: OK
[    1.506717] msm_serial_hs module loaded
[    1.509803] msm_serial_hsl_probe: detected port #0 (ttyHSL0)
[    1.515324] AXI: get_pdata(): Error: Client name not found
[    1.520626] AXI: msm_bus_cl_get_pdata(): client has to provide missing entry for successful registration
[    1.530171] msm_serial_hsl_probe: Bus scaling is disabled
[    1.535696] 78b3000.serial: ttyHSL0 at MMIO 0x78b3000 (irq = 153, base_baud = 460800 [    1.544155] msm_hsl_console_setup: console setup on port #0
[    1.548727] console [ttyHSL0] enabled
[    1.548727] console [ttyHSL0] enabled
[    1.556014] bootconsole [uart0] disabled
[    1.556014] bootconsole [uart0] disabled
[    1.564212] msm_serial_hsl_init: driver initialized
[    1.578450] brd: module loaded
[    1.582920] loop: module loaded
[    1.589183] sps: BAM device 0x07984000 is not registered yet.
[    1.594234] sps:BAM 0x07984000 is registered.
[    1.598072] msm_nand_bam_init: msm_nand_bam_init: BAM device registered: bam_handle 0xc69f6400
[    1.607103] sps:BAM 0x07984000 (va:0xc89a0000) enabled: ver:0x18, number of pipes:7
[    1.616588] msm_nand_parse_smem_ptable: Parsing partition table info from SMEM
[    1.622805] msm_nand_parse_smem_ptable: SMEM partition table found: ver: 4 len: 17
[    1.630391] msm_nand_version_check: nand_major:1, nand_minor:5, qpic_major:1, qpic_minor:5
[    1.638642] msm_nand_scan: NAND Id: 0x1590aa98 Buswidth: 8Bits Density: 256 MByte
[    1.646069] msm_nand_scan: pagesize: 2048 Erasesize: 131072 oobsize: 128 (in Bytes)
[    1.653676] msm_nand_scan: BCH ECC: 8 Bit
[    1.657710] msm_nand_scan: CFG0: 0x290408c0,           CFG1: 0x0804715c
[    1.657710]             RAWCFG0: 0x2b8400c0,        RAWCFG1: 0x0005055d
[    1.657710]           ECCBUFCFG: 0x00000203,      ECCBCHCFG: 0x42040d10
[    1.657710]           RAWECCCFG: 0x42000d11, BAD BLOCK BYTE: 0x000001c5
[    1.684101] Creating 17 MTD partitions on "7980000.nand":
[    1.689447] 0x000000000000-0x000000140000 : "sbl"
[    1.694867] 0x000000140000-0x000000280000 : "mibib"
[    1.699560] 0x000000280000-0x000000e80000 : "efs2"
[    1.704408] 0x000000e80000-0x000000f40000 : "tz"
[    1.708934] 0x000000f40000-0x000000fa0000 : "rpm"
[    1.713625] 0x000000fa0000-0x000001000000 : "aboot"
[    1.718582] 0x000001000000-0x0000017e0000 : "boot"
[    1.723281] 0x0000017e0000-0x000002820000 : "scrub"
[    1.728174] 0x000002820000-0x000005020000 : "modem"
[    1.732968] 0x000005020000-0x000005420000 : "rfbackup"
[    1.738156] 0x000005420000-0x000005820000 : "oem"
[    1.742770] 0x000005820000-0x000005f00000 : "recovery"
[    1.747972] 0x000005f00000-0x000009100000 : "cache"
[    1.752787] 0x000009100000-0x000009a40000 : "recoveryfs"
[    1.758389] 0x000009a40000-0x00000aa40000 : "cdrom"
[    1.762967] 0x00000aa40000-0x00000ba40000 : "jrdresource"
[    1.768407] 0x00000ba40000-0x000010000000 : "system"
[    1.773239] msm_nand_probe: NANDc phys addr 0x7980000, BAM phys addr 0x7984000, BAM IRQ 164
[    1.781074] msm_nand_probe: Allocated DMA buffer at virt_addr 0xc7840000, phys_addr 0x87840000
[    1.791872] PPP generic driver version 2.4.2
[    1.801126] cnss_sdio 87a00000.qcom,cnss-sdio: CNSS SDIO Driver registered
[    1.807554] msm_otg 78d9000.usb: msm_otg probe
[    1.813333] msm_otg 78d9000.usb: OTG regs = c88f8000
[    1.820702] gbridge_init: gbridge_init successs.
[    1.826344] msm_otg 78d9000.usb: phy_reset: success
[    1.830294] qcom,qpnp-rtc qpnp-rtc-c7307000: rtc core: registered qpnp_rtc as rtc0
[    1.838474] i2c /dev entries driver
[    1.842459] unable to find DT imem DLOAD mode node
[    1.846588] unable to find DT imem EDLOAD mode node
[    1.851332] unable to find DT imem dload-type node
[    1.856921] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295 probe enter
[    1.861161] qcom,iterm-ma = 128
[    1.864476] bq24295_otg_vreg: no parameters
[    1.868502] charger_core_register: Charger Core Version 5.0.0(Built at 20151202-21:36)!
[    1.877007] i2c-msm-v2 78b8000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0x3 (ok)
[    1.885559] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_bhot_mode 3
[    1.890150] bq24295-charger 4-006b: power_good is 1,vbus_stat is 2
[    1.896588] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_thermal_threshold 100
[    1.902952] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_sys_min 3700
[    1.908639] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_max_target_voltage 4150
[    1.915223] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_recharge_threshold 300
[    1.922119] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_terminal_current_limit iterm_disabled=0, iterm_ma=128
[    1.930917] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_precharge_current_limit bdi->prech_cur=128
[    1.940038] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_safty_timer 0
[    1.945088] bq24295-charger 4-006b: bq24295_set_input_voltage_limit 4520
[    1.972949] sdhci: Secure Digital Host Controller Interface driver
[    1.978151] sdhci: Copyright(c) Pierre Ossman
[    1.982441] sdhci-pltfm: SDHCI platform and OF driver helper
[    1.989092] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: sdhci_msm_probe: ICE device is not enabled
[    1.995473] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: No vreg data found for vdd
[    2.001530] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: sdhci_msm_pm_qos_parse_irq: error -22 reading irq cpu
[    2.009809] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: sdhci_msm_pm_qos_parse: PM QoS voting for IRQ will be disabled
[    2.018600] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: sdhci_msm_pm_qos_parse: PM QoS voting for cpu group will be disabled
[    2.030541] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: sdhci_msm_probe: sdiowakeup_irq = 353
[    2.036867] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: No vmmc regulator found
[    2.042027] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: No vqmmc regulator found
[    2.048266] mmc0: SDHCI controller on 7824900.sdhci [7824900.sdhci] using 32-bit ADMA in legacy mode
[    2.080401] Welcome to pca955x_probe!!
[    2.084362] leds-pca955x 3-0020: leds-pca955x: Using pca9555 16-bit LED driver at slave address 0x20
[    2.095400] sdhci_msm 7824900.sdhci: card claims to support voltages below defined range
[    2.103125] i2c-msm-v2 78b7000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0x5 (ok)
[    2.114183] msm_otg 78d9000.usb: Avail curr from USB = 1500
[    2.120251] come to USB_SDP_CHARGER!
[    2.123215] Welcome to sn3199_probe!
[    2.126718] leds-sn3199 5-0064: leds-sn3199: Using sn3199 9-bit LED driver at slave address 0x64
[    2.136511] sn3199->led_en_gpio=21
[    2.139143] i2c-msm-v2 78b9000.i2c: msm_bus_scale_register_client(mstr-id:86):0x6 (ok)
[    2.150207] usbcore: registered new interface driver usbhid
[    2.154864] usbhid: USB HID core driver
[    2.159825] sps:BAM 0x078c4000 is registered.
[    2.163573] bimc-bwmon 408000.qcom,cpu-bwmon: BW HWmon governor registered.
[    2.171080] devfreq soc:qcom,cpubw: Couldn't update frequency transition information.
[    2.178513] coresight-fuse a601c.fuse: QPDI fuse not specified
[    2.184242] coresight-fuse a601c.fuse: Fuse initialized
[    2.192407] coresight-csr 6001000.csr: CSR initialized
[    2.197263] coresight-tmc 6026000.tmc: Byte Counter feature enabled
[    2.203204] sps:BAM 0x06084000 is registered.
[    2.207301] coresight-tmc 6026000.tmc: TMC initialized
[    2.212681] coresight-tmc 6025000.tmc: TMC initialized
[    2.220071] nidnt boot config: 0
[    2.224563] mmc0: new ultra high speed SDR50 SDIO card at address 0001
[    2.231120] coresight-tpiu 6020000.tpiu: NIDnT on SDCARD only mode
[    2.236440] coresight-tpiu 6020000.tpiu: TPIU initialized
[    2.242808] coresight-replicator 6024000.replicator: REPLICATOR initialized
[    2.249372] coresight-stm 6002000.stm: STM initialized
[    2.255034] coresight-hwevent 606c000.hwevent: Hardware Event driver initialized
[    2.262312] Netfilter messages via NETLINK v0.30.
[    2.266306] nf_conntrack version 0.5.0 (920 buckets, 3680 max)
[    2.272312] ctnetlink v0.93: registering with nfnetlink.
[    2.277565] ip_set: protocol 6
[    2.280568] ip_tables: (C) 2000-2006 Netfilter Core Team
[    2.285723] arp_tables: (C) 2002 David S. Miller
[    2.290146] TCP: cubic registered
[    2.293915] NET: Registered protocol family 10
[    2.298740] ip6_tables: (C) 2000-2006 Netfilter Core Team
[    2.303407] sit: IPv6 over IPv4 tunneling driver
[    2.308481] NET: Registered protocol family 17
[    2.312340] bridge: automatic filtering via arp/ip/ip6tables has been deprecated. Update your scripts to load br_netfilter if you need this.
[    2.325094] Bridge firewalling registered
[    2.328930] Ebtables v2.0 registered
[    2.333260] NET: Registered protocol family 27
[    2.341362] battery_core_register: Battery Core Version 5.0.0(Built at 20151202-21:36)!
[    2.348466] pmu_battery_probe: vbat_channel=21, tbat_channel=17
[    2.420236] ubi0: attaching mtd16
[    2.723941] ubi0: scanning is finished
[    2.732997] ubi0: attached mtd16 (name "system", size 69 MiB)
[    2.737783] ubi0: PEB size: 131072 bytes (128 KiB), LEB size: 126976 bytes
[    2.744601] ubi0: min./max. I/O unit sizes: 2048/2048, sub-page size 2048
[    2.751333] ubi0: VID header offset: 2048 (aligned 2048), data offset: 4096
[    2.758540] ubi0: good PEBs: 556, bad PEBs: 2, corrupted PEBs: 0
[    2.764305] ubi0: user volume: 3, internal volumes: 1, max. volumes count: 128
[    2.771476] ubi0: max/mean erase counter: 192/64, WL threshold: 4096, image sequence number: 35657280
[    2.780708] ubi0: available PEBs: 0, total reserved PEBs: 556, PEBs reserved for bad PEB handling: 38
[    2.789921] ubi0: background thread "ubi_bgt0d" started, PID 96
[    2.796395] android_bind cdev: 0xC6583E80, name: ci13xxx_msm
[    2.801508] file system registered
[    2.804974] mbim_init: initialize 1 instances
[    2.809228] mbim_init: Initialized 1 ports
[    2.815074] rndis_qc_init: initialize rndis QC instance
[    2.819713] jrd device_desc.bcdDevice: [0x0242]
[    2.823779] android_bind scheduled usb start work: name: ci13xxx_msm
[    2.830230] android_usb gadget: android_usb ready
[    2.834845] msm_hsusb msm_hsusb: [ci13xxx_start] hw_ep_max = 32
[    2.840741] msm_hsusb msm_hsusb: CI13XXX_CONTROLLER_RESET_EVENT received
[    2.847433] msm_hsusb msm_hsusb: CI13XXX_CONTROLLER_UDC_STARTED_EVENT received
[    2.855851] input: gpio-keys as /devices/soc:gpio_keys/input/input1
[    2.861452] qcom,qpnp-rtc qpnp-rtc-c7307000: setting system clock to 1970-01-01 06:36:41 UTC (23801)
[    2.870315] open file error /usb_conf/usb_config.ini
[    2.876412] jrd_usb_start_work open file erro /usb_conf/usb_config.ini, retry_count:0
[    2.884324] parse_legacy_cluster_params(): Ignoring cluster params
[    2.889468] ------------[ cut here ]------------
[    2.894186] WARNING: CPU: 0 PID: 1 at /home/linux3/jrd/yanping.an/ee40/0810/MDM9607.LE.1.0-00130/apps_proc/oe-core/build/tmp-glibc/work-shared/mdm9607/kernel-source/drivers/cpuidle/lpm-levels-of.c:739 parse_cluster+0xb50/0xcb4()
[    2.914366] Modules linked in:
[    2.917339] CPU: 0 PID: 1 Comm: swapper Not tainted 3.18.20 #1
[    2.923171] [<c00132ac>] (unwind_backtrace) from [<c0011460>] (show_stack+0x10/0x14)
[    2.931092] [<c0011460>] (show_stack) from [<c001c6ac>] (warn_slowpath_common+0x68/0x88)
[    2.939175] [<c001c6ac>] (warn_slowpath_common) from [<c001c75c>] (warn_slowpath_null+0x18/0x20)
[    2.947895] [<c001c75c>] (warn_slowpath_null) from [<c034e180>] (parse_cluster+0xb50/0xcb4)
[    2.956189] [<c034e180>] (parse_cluster) from [<c034b6b4>] (lpm_probe+0xc/0x1d4)
[    2.963527] [<c034b6b4>] (lpm_probe) from [<c024857c>] (platform_drv_probe+0x30/0x7c)
[    2.971380] [<c024857c>] (platform_drv_probe) from [<c0246d54>] (driver_probe_device+0xb8/0x1e8)
[    2.980118] [<c0246d54>] (driver_probe_device) from [<c0246f30>] (__driver_attach+0x68/0x8c)
[    2.988467] [<c0246f30>] (__driver_attach) from [<c02455d0>] (bus_for_each_dev+0x6c/0x90)
[    2.996626] [<c02455d0>] (bus_for_each_dev) from [<c02465a4>] (bus_add_driver+0xe0/0x1c8)
[    3.004786] [<c02465a4>] (bus_add_driver) from [<c02477bc>] (driver_register+0x9c/0xe0)
[    3.012739] [<c02477bc>] (driver_register) from [<c080c3d8>] (lpm_levels_module_init+0x14/0x38)
[    3.021459] [<c080c3d8>] (lpm_levels_module_init) from [<c0008980>] (do_one_initcall+0xf8/0x1a0)
[    3.030217] [<c0008980>] (do_one_initcall) from [<c07e7d4c>] (kernel_init_freeable+0xf0/0x1b0)
[    3.038818] [<c07e7d4c>] (kernel_init_freeable) from [<c0582d48>] (kernel_init+0x8/0xe4)
[    3.046888] [<c0582d48>] (kernel_init) from [<c000dda0>] (ret_from_fork+0x14/0x34)
[    3.054432] ---[ end trace e9ec50b1ec4c8f73 ]---
[    3.059012] ------------[ cut here ]------------
[    3.063604] WARNING: CPU: 0 PID: 1 at /home/linux3/jrd/yanping.an/ee40/0810/MDM9607.LE.1.0-00130/apps_proc/oe-core/build/tmp-glibc/work-shared/mdm9607/kernel-source/drivers/cpuidle/lpm-levels-of.c:739 parse_cluster+0xb50/0xcb4()
[    3.083858] Modules linked in:
[    3.086870] CPU: 0 PID: 1 Comm: swapper Tainted: G        W      3.18.20 #1
[    3.093814] [<c00132ac>] (unwind_backtrace) from [<c0011460>] (show_stack+0x10/0x14)
[    3.101575] [<c0011460>] (show_stack) from [<c001c6ac>] (warn_slowpath_common+0x68/0x88)
[    3.109641] [<c001c6ac>] (warn_slowpath_common) from [<c001c75c>] (warn_slowpath_null+0x18/0x20)
[    3.118412] [<c001c75c>] (warn_slowpath_null) from [<c034e180>] (parse_cluster+0xb50/0xcb4)
[    3.126745] [<c034e180>] (parse_cluster) from [<c034b6b4>] (lpm_probe+0xc/0x1d4)
[    3.134126] [<c034b6b4>] (lpm_probe) from [<c024857c>] (platform_drv_probe+0x30/0x7c)
[    3.141906] [<c024857c>] (platform_drv_probe) from [<c0246d54>] (driver_probe_device+0xb8/0x1e8)
[    3.150702] [<c0246d54>] (driver_probe_device) from [<c0246f30>] (__driver_attach+0x68/0x8c)
[    3.159120] [<c0246f30>] (__driver_attach) from [<c02455d0>] (bus_for_each_dev+0x6c/0x90)
[    3.167285] [<c02455d0>] (bus_for_each_dev) from [<c02465a4>] (bus_add_driver+0xe0/0x1c8)
[    3.175444] [<c02465a4>] (bus_add_driver) from [<c02477bc>] (driver_register+0x9c/0xe0)
[    3.183398] [<c02477bc>] (driver_register) from [<c080c3d8>] (lpm_levels_module_init+0x14/0x38)
[    3.192107] [<c080c3d8>] (lpm_levels_module_init) from [<c0008980>] (do_one_initcall+0xf8/0x1a0)
[    3.200877] [<c0008980>] (do_one_initcall) from [<c07e7d4c>] (kernel_init_freeable+0xf0/0x1b0)
[    3.209475] [<c07e7d4c>] (kernel_init_freeable) from [<c0582d48>] (kernel_init+0x8/0xe4)
[    3.217542] [<c0582d48>] (kernel_init) from [<c000dda0>] (ret_from_fork+0x14/0x34)
[    3.225090] ---[ end trace e9ec50b1ec4c8f74 ]---
[    3.229667] /soc/qcom,lpm-levels/qcom,pm-cluster@0: No CPU phandle, assuming single cluster
[    3.239954] qcom,cc-debug-mdm9607 1800000.qcom,debug: Registered Debug Mux successfully
[    3.247619] emac_lan_vreg: disabling
[    3.250507] mem_acc_corner: disabling
[    3.254196] clock_late_init: Removing enables held for handed-off clocks
[    3.262690] ALSA device list:
[    3.264732]   No soundcard [    3.274083] UBIFS (ubi0:0): background thread "ubifs_bgt0_0" started, PID 102
[    3.305224] UBIFS (ubi0:0): recovery needed
[    3.466156] UBIFS (ubi0:0): recovery completed
[    3.469627] UBIFS (ubi0:0): UBIFS: mounted UBI device 0, volume 0, name "rootfs"
[    3.476987] UBIFS (ubi0:0): LEB size: 126976 bytes (124 KiB), min./max. I/O unit sizes: 2048 bytes/2048 bytes
[    3.486876] UBIFS (ubi0:0): FS size: 45838336 bytes (43 MiB, 361 LEBs), journal size 9023488 bytes (8 MiB, 72 LEBs)
[    3.497417] UBIFS (ubi0:0): reserved for root: 0 bytes (0 KiB)
[    3.503078] UBIFS (ubi0:0): media format: w4/r0 (latest is w4/r0), UUID 4DBB2F12-34EB-43B6-839B-3BA930765BAE, small LPT model
[    3.515582] VFS: Mounted root (ubifs filesystem) on device 0:12.
[    3.520940] Freeing unused kernel memory: 276K (c07e7000 - c082c000)
INIT: version 2.88 booting

10 February 2021

Dirk Eddelbuettel: RcppArmadillo 0.10.2.1.0: New Upstream Release

armadillo image Armadillo is a powerful and expressive C++ template library for linear algebra aiming towards a good balance between speed and ease of use with a syntax deliberately close to a Matlab. RcppArmadillo integrates this library with the R environment and language and is widely used by (currently) 823 other packages on CRAN. This release brings us Armadillo 10.2 with a few updates as detailed below in the list of changes. Upstream release 10.2 was made a couple of days ago, but we need to balance new upstream updates with a responsible release cadence at CRAN. As we needed a maintenance release in early January, I opted to wait four weeks with this one which hence gets us 10.2.0 and 10.2.1 at once. As tweeted (with a follow-up) it had yet another very smooth passage at CRAN so we again appreciate the excellent work of the CRAN maintainers and say Thank You!. Anybody who desires more frequent updates show look at the RcppCore drat repo which provides more frequent interim updates. Here for example we also had 0.10.2.0.0 available for your testing pleasure. Also of note is that here is now a Python variant pyarma for those who might want enjoy Armadillo with Python. The full set of changes follows.

Changes in RcppArmadillo version 0.10.2.1.0 (2021-02-09)
  • Upgraded to Armadillo release 10.2.1 (Cicada Swarm)
    • faster handling of subcubes
    • added tgamma()
    • added .brief_print() for abridged printing of matrices & cubes
    • expanded forms of trimatu() and trimatl() with diagonal specification to handle sparse matrices
    • expanded eigs_sym() and eigs_gen() with optional shift-invert mode

Courtesy of my CRANberries, there is a diffstat report relative to previous release. More detailed information is on the RcppArmadillo page. Questions, comments etc should go to the rcpp-devel mailing list off the R-Forge page. If you like this or other open-source work I do, you can sponsor me at GitHub.

This post by Dirk Eddelbuettel originated on his Thinking inside the box blog. Please report excessive re-aggregation in third-party for-profit settings.

7 February 2021

Chris Lamb: Favourite books of 2020

I won't reveal precisely how many books I read in 2020, but it was definitely an improvement on 74 in 2019, 53 in 2018 and 50 in 2017. But not only did I read more in a quantitative sense, the quality seemed higher as well. There were certainly fewer disappointments: given its cultural resonance, I was nonplussed by Nick Hornby's Fever Pitch and whilst Ian Fleming's The Man with the Golden Gun was a little thin (again, given the obvious influence of the Bond franchise) the booked lacked 'thinness' in a way that made it interesting to critique. The weakest novel I read this year was probably J. M. Berger's Optimal, but even this hybrid of Ready Player One late-period Black Mirror wasn't that cringeworthy, all things considered. Alas, graphic novels continue to not quite be my thing, I'm afraid. I perhaps experienced more disappointments in the non-fiction section. Paul Bloom's Against Empathy was frustrating, particularly in that it expended unnecessary energy battling its misleading title and accepted terminology, and it could so easily have been an 20-minute video essay instead). (Elsewhere in the social sciences, David and Goliath will likely be the last Malcolm Gladwell book I voluntarily read.) After so many positive citations, I was also more than a little underwhelmed by Shoshana Zuboff's The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, and after Ryan Holiday's many engaging reboots of Stoic philosophy, his Conspiracy (on Peter Thiel and Hulk Hogan taking on Gawker) was slightly wide of the mark for me. Anyway, here follows a selection of my favourites from 2020, in no particular order:

Fiction Wolf Hall & Bring Up the Bodies & The Mirror and the Light Hilary Mantel During the early weeks of 2020, I re-read the first two parts of Hilary Mantel's Thomas Cromwell trilogy in time for the March release of The Mirror and the Light. I had actually spent the last few years eagerly following any news of the final instalment, feigning outrage whenever Mantel appeared to be spending time on other projects. Wolf Hall turned out to be an even better book than I remembered, and when The Mirror and the Light finally landed at midnight on 5th March, I began in earnest the next morning. Note that date carefully; this was early 2020, and the book swiftly became something of a heavy-handed allegory about the world at the time. That is to say and without claiming that I am Monsieur Cromuel in any meaningful sense it was an uneasy experience to be reading about a man whose confident grasp on his world, friends and life was slipping beyond his control, and at least in Cromwell's case, was heading inexorably towards its denouement. The final instalment in Mantel's trilogy is not perfect, and despite my love of her writing I would concur with the judges who decided against awarding her a third Booker Prize. For instance, there is something of the longueur that readers dislike in the second novel, although this might not be entirely Mantel's fault after all, the rise of the "ugly" Anne of Cleves and laborious trade negotiations for an uninspiring mineral (this is no Herbertian 'spice') will never match the court intrigues of Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour and that man for all seasons, Thomas More. Still, I am already looking forward to returning to the verbal sparring between King Henry and Cromwell when I read the entire trilogy once again, tentatively planned for 2022.

The Fault in Our Stars John Green I came across John Green's The Fault in Our Stars via a fantastic video by Lindsay Ellis discussing Roland Barthes famous 1967 essay on authorial intent. However, I might have eventually come across The Fault in Our Stars regardless, not because of Green's status as an internet celebrity of sorts but because I'm a complete sucker for this kind of emotionally-manipulative bildungsroman, likely due to reading Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials a few too many times in my teens. Although its title is taken from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, The Fault in Our Stars is actually more Romeo & Juliet. Hazel, a 16-year-old cancer patient falls in love with Gus, an equally ill teen from her cancer support group. Hazel and Gus share the same acerbic (and distinctly unteenage) wit and a love of books, centred around Hazel's obsession of An Imperial Affliction, a novel by the meta-fictional author Peter Van Houten. Through a kind of American version of Jim'll Fix It, Gus and Hazel go and visit Van Houten in Amsterdam. I'm afraid it's even cheesier than I'm describing it. Yet just as there is a time and a place for Michelin stars and Haribo Starmix, there's surely a place for this kind of well-constructed but altogether maudlin literature. One test for emotionally manipulative works like this is how well it can mask its internal contradictions while Green's story focuses on the universalities of love, fate and the shortness of life (as do almost all of his works, it seems), The Fault in Our Stars manages to hide, for example, that this is an exceedingly favourable treatment of terminal illness that is only possible for the better off. The 2014 film adaptation does somewhat worse in peddling this fantasy (and has a much weaker treatment of the relationship between the teens' parents too, an underappreciated subtlety of the book). The novel, however, is pretty slick stuff, and it is difficult to fault it for what it is. For some comparison, I later read Green's Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns which, as I mention, tug at many of the same strings, but they don't come together nearly as well as The Fault in Our Stars. James Joyce claimed that "sentimentality is unearned emotion", and in this respect, The Fault in Our Stars really does earn it.

The Plague Albert Camus P. D. James' The Children of Men, George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, Arthur Koestler's Darkness at Noon ... dystopian fiction was already a theme of my reading in 2020, so given world events it was an inevitability that I would end up with Camus's novel about a plague that swept through the Algerian city of Oran. Is The Plague an allegory about the Nazi occupation of France during World War Two? Where are all the female characters? Where are the Arab ones? Since its original publication in 1947, there's been so much written about The Plague that it's hard to say anything new today. Nevertheless, I was taken aback by how well it captured so much of the nuance of 2020. Whilst we were saying just how 'unprecedented' these times were, it was eerie how a novel written in the 1940s could accurately how many of us were feeling well over seventy years on later: the attitudes of the people; the confident declarations from the institutions; the misaligned conversations that led to accidental misunderstandings. The disconnected lovers. The only thing that perhaps did not work for me in The Plague was the 'character' of the church. Although I could appreciate most of the allusion and metaphor, it was difficult for me to relate to the significance of Father Paneloux, particularly regarding his change of view on the doctrinal implications of the virus, and spoiler alert that he finally died of a "doubtful case" of the disease, beyond the idea that Paneloux's beliefs are in themselves "doubtful". Answers on a postcard, perhaps. The Plague even seemed to predict how we, at least speaking of the UK, would react when the waves of the virus waxed and waned as well:
The disease stiffened and carried off three or four patients who were expected to recover. These were the unfortunates of the plague, those whom it killed when hope was high
It somehow captured the nostalgic yearning for high-definition videos of cities and public transport; one character even visits the completely deserted railway station in Oman simply to read the timetables on the wall.

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy John le Carr There's absolutely none of the Mad Men glamour of James Bond in John le Carr 's icy world of Cold War spies:
Small, podgy, and at best middle-aged, Smiley was by appearance one of London's meek who do not inherit the earth. His legs were short, his gait anything but agile, his dress costly, ill-fitting, and extremely wet.
Almost a direct rebuttal to Ian Fleming's 007, Tinker, Tailor has broken-down cars, bad clothes, women with their own internal and external lives (!), pathetically primitive gadgets, and (contra Mad Men) hangovers that significantly longer than ten minutes. In fact, the main aspect that the mostly excellent 2011 film adaption doesn't really capture is the smoggy and run-down nature of 1970s London this is not your proto-Cool Britannia of Austin Powers or GTA:1969, the city is truly 'gritty' in the sense there is a thin film of dirt and grime on every surface imaginable. Another angle that the film cannot capture well is just how purposefully the novel does not mention the United States. Despite the US obviously being the dominant power, the British vacillate between pretending it doesn't exist or implying its irrelevance to the matter at hand. This is no mistake on Le Carr 's part, as careful readers are rewarded by finding this denial of US hegemony in metaphor throughout --pace Ian Fleming, there is no obvious Felix Leiter to loudly throw money at the problem or a Sheriff Pepper to serve as cartoon racist for the Brits to feel superior about. By contrast, I recall that a clever allusion to "dusty teabags" is subtly mirrored a few paragraphs later with a reference to the installation of a coffee machine in the office, likely symbolic of the omnipresent and unavoidable influence of America. (The officer class convince themselves that coffee is a European import.) Indeed, Le Carr communicates a feeling of being surrounded on all sides by the peeling wallpaper of Empire. Oftentimes, the writing style matches the graceless and inelegance of the world it depicts. The sentences are dense and you find your brain performing a fair amount of mid-flight sentence reconstruction, reparsing clauses, commas and conjunctions to interpret Le Carr 's intended meaning. In fact, in his eulogy-cum-analysis of Le Carr 's writing style, William Boyd, himself a ventrioquilist of Ian Fleming, named this intentional technique 'staccato'. Like the musical term, I suspect the effect of this literary staccato is as much about the impact it makes on a sentence as the imperceptible space it generates after it. Lastly, the large cast in this sprawling novel is completely believable, all the way from the Russian spymaster Karla to minor schoolboy Roach the latter possibly a stand-in for Le Carr himself. I got through the 500-odd pages in just a few days, somehow managing to hold the almost-absurdly complicated plot in my head. This is one of those classic books of the genre that made me wonder why I had not got around to it before.

The Nickel Boys Colson Whitehead According to the judges who awarded it the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, The Nickel Boys is "a devastating exploration of abuse at a reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida" that serves as a "powerful tale of human perseverance, dignity and redemption". But whilst there is plenty of this perseverance and dignity on display, I found little redemption in this deeply cynical novel. It could almost be read as a follow-up book to Whitehead's popular The Underground Railroad, which itself won the Pulitzer Prize in 2017. Indeed, each book focuses on a young protagonist who might be euphemistically referred to as 'downtrodden'. But The Nickel Boys is not only far darker in tone, it feels much closer and more connected to us today. Perhaps this is unsurprising, given that it is based on the story of the Dozier School in northern Florida which operated for over a century before its long history of institutional abuse and racism was exposed a 2012 investigation. Nevertheless, if you liked the social commentary in The Underground Railroad, then there is much more of that in The Nickel Boys:
Perhaps his life might have veered elsewhere if the US government had opened the country to colored advancement like they opened the army. But it was one thing to allow someone to kill for you and another to let him live next door.
Sardonic aper us of this kind are pretty relentless throughout the book, but it never tips its hand too far into on nihilism, especially when some of the visual metaphors are often first-rate: "An American flag sighed on a pole" is one I can easily recall from memory. In general though, The Nickel Boys is not only more world-weary in tenor than his previous novel, the United States it describes seems almost too beaten down to have the energy conjure up the Swiftian magical realism that prevented The Underground Railroad from being overly lachrymose. Indeed, even we Whitehead transports us a present-day New York City, we can't indulge in another kind of fantasy, the one where America has solved its problems:
The Daily News review described the [Manhattan restaurant] as nouveau Southern, "down-home plates with a twist." What was the twist that it was soul food made by white people?
It might be overly reductionist to connect Whitehead's tonal downshift with the racial justice movements of the past few years, but whatever the reason, we've ended up with a hard-hitting, crushing and frankly excellent book.

True Grit & No Country for Old Men Charles Portis & Cormac McCarthy It's one of the most tedious cliches to claim the book is better than the film, but these two books are of such high quality that even the Coen Brothers at their best cannot transcend them. I'm grouping these books together here though, not because their respective adaptations will exemplify some of the best cinema of the 21st century, but because of their superb treatment of language. Take the use of dialogue. Cormac McCarthy famously does not use any punctuation "I believe in periods, in capitals, in the occasional comma, and that's it" but the conversations in No Country for Old Men together feel familiar and commonplace, despite being relayed through this unconventional technique. In lesser hands, McCarthy's written-out Texan drawl would be the novelistic equivalent of white rap or Jar Jar Binks, but not only is the effect entirely gripping, it helps you to believe you are physically present in the many intimate and domestic conversations that hold this book together. Perhaps the cinematic familiarity helps, as you can almost hear Tommy Lee Jones' voice as Sheriff Bell from the opening page to the last. Charles Portis' True Grit excels in its dialogue too, but in this book it is not so much in how it flows (although that is delightful in its own way) but in how forthright and sardonic Maddie Ross is:
"Earlier tonight I gave some thought to stealing a kiss from you, though you are very young, and sick and unattractive to boot, but now I am of a mind to give you five or six good licks with my belt." "One would be as unpleasant as the other."
Perhaps this should be unsurprising. Maddie, a fourteen-year-old girl from Yell County, Arkansas, can barely fire her father's heavy pistol, so she can only has words to wield as her weapon. Anyway, it's not just me who treasures this book. In her encomium that presages most modern editions, Donna Tartt of The Secret History fame traces the novels origins through Huckleberry Finn, praising its elegance and economy: "The plot of True Grit is uncomplicated and as pure in its way as one of the Canterbury Tales". I've read any Chaucer, but I am inclined to agree. Tartt also recalls that True Grit vanished almost entirely from the public eye after the release of John Wayne's flimsy cinematic vehicle in 1969 this earlier film was, Tartt believes, "good enough, but doesn't do the book justice". As it happens, reading a book with its big screen adaptation as a chaser has been a minor theme of my 2020, including P. D. James' The Children of Men, Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go, Patricia Highsmith's Strangers on a Train, James Ellroy's The Black Dahlia, John Green's The Fault in Our Stars, John le Carr 's Tinker, Tailor Soldier, Spy and even a staged production of Charles Dicken's A Christmas Carol streamed from The Old Vic. For an autodidact with no academic background in literature or cinema, I've been finding this an effective and enjoyable means of getting closer to these fine books and films it is precisely where they deviate (or perhaps where they are deficient) that offers a means by which one can see how they were constructed. I've also found that adaptations can also tell you a lot about the culture in which they were made: take the 'straightwashing' in the film version of Strangers on a Train (1951) compared to the original novel, for example. It is certainly true that adaptions rarely (as Tartt put it) "do the book justice", but she might be also right to alight on a legal metaphor, for as the saying goes, to judge a movie in comparison to the book is to do both a disservice.

The Glass Hotel Emily St. John Mandel In The Glass Hotel, Mandel somehow pulls off the impossible; writing a loose roman- -clef on Bernie Madoff, a Ponzi scheme and the ephemeral nature of finance capital that is tranquil and shimmeringly beautiful. Indeed, don't get the wrong idea about the subject matter; this is no over over-caffeinated The Big Short, as The Glass Hotel is less about a Madoff or coked-up financebros but the fragile unreality of the late 2010s, a time which was, as we indeed discovered in 2020, one event away from almost shattering completely. Mandel's prose has that translucent, phantom quality to it where the chapters slip through your fingers when you try to grasp at them, and the plot is like a ghost ship that that slips silently, like the Mary Celeste, onto the Canadian water next to which the eponymous 'Glass Hotel' resides. Indeed, not unlike The Overlook Hotel, the novel so overflows with symbolism so that even the title needs to evoke the idea of impermanence permanently living in a hotel might serve as a house, but it won't provide a home. It's risky to generalise about such things post-2016, but the whole story sits in that the infinitesimally small distance between perception and reality, a self-constructed culture that is not so much 'post truth' but between them. There's something to consider in almost every character too. Take the stand-in for Bernie Madoff: no caricature of Wall Street out of a 1920s political cartoon or Brechtian satire, Jonathan Alkaitis has none of the oleaginous sleaze of a Dominic Strauss-Kahn, the cold sociopathy of a Marcus Halberstam nor the well-exercised sinuses of, say, Jordan Belford. Alkaitis is dare I say it? eminently likeable, and the book is all the better for it. Even the C-level characters have something to say: Enrico, trivially escaping from the regulators (who are pathetically late to the fraud without Mandel ever telling us explicitly), is daydreaming about the girlfriend he abandoned in New York: "He wished he'd realised he loved her before he left". What was in his previous life that prevented him from doing so? Perhaps he was never in love at all, or is love itself just as transient as the imaginary money in all those bank accounts? Maybe he fell in love just as he crossed safely into Mexico? When, precisely, do we fall in love anyway? I went on to read Mandel's Last Night in Montreal, an early work where you can feel her reaching for that other-worldly quality that she so masterfully achieves in The Glass Hotel. Her f ted Station Eleven is on my must-read list for 2021. "What is truth?" asked Pontius Pilate. Not even Mandel cannot give us the answer, but this will certainly do for now.

Running the Light Sam Tallent Although it trades in all of the clich s and stereotypes of the stand-up comedian (the triumvirate of drink, drugs and divorce), Sam Tallent's debut novel depicts an extremely convincing fictional account of a touring road comic. The comedian Doug Stanhope (who himself released a fairly decent No Encore for the Donkey memoir in 2020) hyped Sam's book relentlessly on his podcast during lockdown... and justifiably so. I ripped through Running the Light in a few short hours, the only disappointment being that I can't seem to find videos online of Sam that come anywhere close to match up to his writing style. If you liked the rollercoaster energy of Paul Beatty's The Sellout, the cynicism of George Carlin and the car-crash invertibility of final season Breaking Bad, check this great book out.

Non-fiction Inside Story Martin Amis This was my first introduction to Martin Amis's work after hearing that his "novelised autobiography" contained a fair amount about Christopher Hitchens, an author with whom I had a one of those rather clich d parasocial relationship with in the early days of YouTube. (Hey, it could have been much worse.) Amis calls his book a "novelised autobiography", and just as much has been made of its quasi-fictional nature as the many diversions into didactic writing advice that betwixt each chapter: "Not content with being a novel, this book also wants to tell you how to write novels", complained Tim Adams in The Guardian. I suspect that reviewers who grew up with Martin since his debut book in 1973 rolled their eyes at yet another demonstration of his manifest cleverness, but as my first exposure to Amis's gift of observation, I confess that I was thought it was actually kinda clever. Try, for example, "it remains a maddening truth that both sexual success and sexual failure are steeply self-perpetuating" or "a hospital gym is a contradiction like a young Conservative", etc. Then again, perhaps I was experiencing a form of nostalgia for a pre-Gamergate YouTube, when everything in the world was a lot simpler... or at least things could be solved by articulate gentlemen who honed their art of rhetoric at the Oxford Union. I went on to read Martin's first novel, The Rachel Papers (is it 'arrogance' if you are, indeed, that confident?), as well as his 1997 Night Train. I plan to read more of him in the future.

The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters: Volume 1 & Volume 2 & Volume 3 & Volume 4 George Orwell These deceptively bulky four volumes contain all of George Orwell's essays, reviews and correspondence, from his teenage letters sent to local newspapers to notes to his literary executor on his deathbed in 1950. Reading this was part of a larger, multi-year project of mine to cover the entirety of his output. By including this here, however, I'm not recommending that you read everything that came out of Orwell's typewriter. The letters to friends and publishers will only be interesting to biographers or hardcore fans (although I would recommend Dorian Lynskey's The Ministry of Truth: A Biography of George Orwell's 1984 first). Furthermore, many of his book reviews will be of little interest today. Still, some insights can be gleaned; if there is any inconsistency in this huge corpus is that his best work is almost 'too' good and too impactful, making his merely-average writing appear like hackwork. There are some gems that don't make the usual essay collections too, and some of Orwell's most astute social commentary came out of series of articles he wrote for the left-leaning newspaper Tribune, related in many ways to the US Jacobin. You can also see some of his most famous ideas start to take shape years if not decades before they appear in his novels in these prototype blog posts. I also read Dennis Glover's novelised account of the writing of Nineteen-Eighty Four called The Last Man in Europe, and I plan to re-read some of Orwell's earlier novels during 2021 too, including A Clergyman's Daughter and his 'antebellum' Coming Up for Air that he wrote just before the Second World War; his most under-rated novel in my estimation. As it happens, and with the exception of the US and Spain, copyright in the works published in his lifetime ends on 1st January 2021. Make of that what you will.

Capitalist Realism & Chavs: The Demonisation of the Working Class Mark Fisher & Owen Jones These two books are not natural companions to one another and there is likely much that Jones and Fisher would vehemently disagree on, but I am pairing these books together here because they represent the best of the 'political' books I read in 2020. Mark Fisher was a dedicated leftist whose first book, Capitalist Realism, marked an important contribution to political philosophy in the UK. However, since his suicide in early 2017, the currency of his writing has markedly risen, and Fisher is now frequently referenced due to his belief that the prevalence of mental health conditions in modern life is a side-effect of various material conditions, rather than a natural or unalterable fact "like weather". (Of course, our 'weather' is being increasingly determined by a combination of politics, economics and petrochemistry than pure randomness.) Still, Fisher wrote on all manner of topics, from the 2012 London Olympics and "weird and eerie" electronic music that yearns for a lost future that will never arrive, possibly prefiguring or influencing the Fallout video game series. Saying that, I suspect Fisher will resonate better with a UK audience more than one across the Atlantic, not necessarily because he was minded to write about the parochial politics and culture of Britain, but because his writing often carries some exasperation at the suppression of class in favour of identity-oriented politics, a viewpoint not entirely prevalent in the United States outside of, say, Tour F. Reed or the late Michael Brooks. (Indeed, Fisher is likely best known in the US as the author of his controversial 2013 essay, Exiting the Vampire Castle, but that does not figure greatly in this book). Regardless, Capitalist Realism is an insightful, damning and deeply unoptimistic book, best enjoyed in the warm sunshine I found it an ironic compliment that I had quoted so many paragraphs that my Kindle's copy protection routines prevented me from clipping any further. Owen Jones needs no introduction to anyone who regularly reads a British newspaper, especially since 2015 where he unofficially served as a proxy and punching bag for expressing frustrations with the then-Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn. However, as the subtitle of Jones' 2012 book suggests, Chavs attempts to reveal the "demonisation of the working class" in post-financial crisis Britain. Indeed, the timing of the book is central to Jones' analysis, specifically that the stereotype of the "chav" is used by government and the media as a convenient figleaf to avoid meaningful engagement with economic and social problems on an austerity ridden island. (I'm not quite sure what the US equivalent to 'chav' might be. Perhaps Florida Man without the implications of mental health.) Anyway, Jones certainly has a point. From Vicky Pollard to the attacks on Jade Goody, there is an ignorance and prejudice at the heart of the 'chav' backlash, and that would be bad enough even if it was not being co-opted or criminalised for ideological ends. Elsewhere in political science, I also caught Michael Brooks' Against the Web and David Graeber's Bullshit Jobs, although they are not quite methodical enough to recommend here. However, Graeber's award-winning Debt: The First 5000 Years will be read in 2021. Matt Taibbi's Hate Inc: Why Today's Media Makes Us Despise One Another is worth a brief mention here though, but its sprawling nature felt very much like I was reading a set of Substack articles loosely edited together. And, indeed, I was.

The Golden Thread: The Story of Writing Ewan Clayton A recommendation from a dear friend, Ewan Clayton's The Golden Thread is a journey through the long history of the writing from the Dawn of Man to present day. Whether you are a linguist, a graphic designer, a visual artist, a typographer, an archaeologist or 'just' a reader, there is probably something in here for you. I was already dipping my quill into calligraphy this year so I suspect I would have liked this book in any case, but highlights would definitely include the changing role of writing due to the influence of textual forms in the workplace as well as digression on ergonomic desks employed by monks and scribes in the Middle Ages. A lot of books by otherwise-sensible authors overstretch themselves when they write about computers or other technology from the Information Age, at best resulting in bizarre non-sequiturs and dangerously Panglossian viewpoints at worst. But Clayton surprised me by writing extremely cogently and accurate on the role of text in this new and unpredictable era. After finishing it I realised why for a number of years, Clayton was a consultant for the legendary Xerox PARC where he worked in a group focusing on documents and contemporary communications whilst his colleagues were busy inventing the graphical user interface, laser printing, text editors and the computer mouse.

New Dark Age & Radical Technologies: The Design of Everyday Life James Bridle & Adam Greenfield I struggled to describe these two books to friends, so I doubt I will suddenly do a better job here. Allow me to quote from Will Self's review of James Bridle's New Dark Age in the Guardian:
We're accustomed to worrying about AI systems being built that will either "go rogue" and attack us, or succeed us in a bizarre evolution of, um, evolution what we didn't reckon on is the sheer inscrutability of these manufactured minds. And minds is not a misnomer. How else should we think about the neural network Google has built so its translator can model the interrelation of all words in all languages, in a kind of three-dimensional "semantic space"?
New Dark Age also turns its attention to the weird, algorithmically-derived products offered for sale on Amazon as well as the disturbing and abusive videos that are automatically uploaded by bots to YouTube. It should, by rights, be a mess of disparate ideas and concerns, but Bridle has a flair for introducing topics which reveals he comes to computer science from another discipline altogether; indeed, on a four-part series he made for Radio 4, he's primarily referred to as "an artist". Whilst New Dark Age has rather abstract section topics, Adam Greenfield's Radical Technologies is a rather different book altogether. Each chapter dissects one of the so-called 'radical' technologies that condition the choices available to us, asking how do they work, what challenges do they present to us and who ultimately benefits from their adoption. Greenfield takes his scalpel to smartphones, machine learning, cryptocurrencies, artificial intelligence, etc., and I don't think it would be unfair to say that starts and ends with a cynical point of view. He is no reactionary Luddite, though, and this is both informed and extremely well-explained, and it also lacks the lazy, affected and Private Eye-like cynicism of, say, Attack of the 50 Foot Blockchain. The books aren't a natural pair, for Bridle's writing contains quite a bit of air in places, ironically mimics the very 'clouds' he inveighs against. Greenfield's book, by contrast, as little air and much lower pH value. Still, it was more than refreshing to read two technology books that do not limit themselves to platitudinal booleans, be those dangerously naive (e.g. Kevin Kelly's The Inevitable) or relentlessly nihilistic (Shoshana Zuboff's The Age of Surveillance Capitalism). Sure, they are both anti-technology screeds, but they tend to make arguments about systems of power rather than specific companies and avoid being too anti-'Big Tech' through a narrower, Silicon Valley obsessed lens for that (dipping into some other 2020 reading of mine) I might suggest Wendy Liu's Abolish Silicon Valley or Scott Galloway's The Four. Still, both books are superlatively written. In fact, Adam Greenfield has some of the best non-fiction writing around, both in terms of how he can explain complicated concepts (particularly the smart contract mechanism of the Ethereum cryptocurrency) as well as in the extremely finely-crafted sentences I often felt that the writing style almost had no need to be that poetic, and I particularly enjoyed his fictional scenarios at the end of the book.

The Algebra of Happiness & Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life Scott Galloway & Nir Eyal A cocktail of insight, informality and abrasiveness makes NYU Professor Scott Galloway uncannily appealing to guys around my age. Although Galloway definitely has his own wisdom and experience, similar to Joe Rogan I suspect that a crucial part of Galloway's appeal is that you feel you are learning right alongside him. Thankfully, 'Prof G' is far less err problematic than Rogan (Galloway is more of a well-meaning, spirited centrist), although he, too, has some pretty awful takes at time. This is a shame, because removed from the whirlwind of social media he can be really quite considered, such as in this long-form interview with Stephanie Ruhle. In fact, it is this kind of sentiment that he captured in his 2019 Algebra of Happiness. When I look over my highlighted sections, it's clear that it's rather schmaltzy out of context ("Things you hate become just inconveniences in the presence of people you love..."), but his one-two punch of cynicism and saccharine ("Ask somebody who purchased a home in 2007 if their 'American Dream' came true...") is weirdly effective, especially when he uses his own family experiences as part of his story:
A better proxy for your life isn't your first home, but your last. Where you draw your last breath is more meaningful, as it's a reflection of your success and, more important, the number of people who care about your well-being. Your first house signals the meaningful your future and possibility. Your last home signals the profound the people who love you. Where you die, and who is around you at the end, is a strong signal of your success or failure in life.
Nir Eyal's Indistractable, however, is a totally different kind of 'self-help' book. The important background story is that Eyal was the author of the widely-read Hooked which turned into a secular Bible of so-called 'addictive design'. (If you've ever been cornered by a techbro wielding a Wikipedia-thin knowledge of B. F. Skinner's behaviourist psychology and how it can get you to click 'Like' more often, it ultimately came from Hooked.) However, Eyal's latest effort is actually an extended mea culpa for his previous sin and he offers both high and low-level palliative advice on how to avoid falling for the tricks he so studiously espoused before. I suppose we should be thankful to capitalism for selling both cause and cure. Speaking of markets, there appears to be a growing appetite for books in this 'anti-distraction' category, and whilst I cannot claim to have done an exhausting study of this nascent field, Indistractable argues its points well without relying on accurate-but-dry "studies show..." or, worse, Gladwellian gotchas. My main criticism, however, would be that Eyal doesn't acknowledge the limits of a self-help approach to this problem; it seems that many of the issues he outlines are an inescapable part of the alienation in modern Western society, and the only way one can really avoid distraction is to move up the income ladder or move out to a 500-acre ranch.

31 January 2021

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities January 2021

Focus This month I didn't have any particular focus. I just worked on issues in my info bubble.

Changes

Issues

Review

Administration
  • Debian ports: fix header on incoming.ports.d.o/buildd
  • Debian wiki: unblock IP addresses, approve accounts

Communication
  • Initiate discussions about aptly, Linux USB gadgets maintenance
  • Respond to queries from Debian users and contributors on the mailing lists and IRC
  • Invite organisations to post on FOSSjobs

Sponsors The samba work, apt-listchanges work, pytest-rerunfailures upload, python-testfixtures/python-scrapy bugs and python-scrapy related backports were sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

29 January 2021

Jamie McClelland: So... is Signal good or bad?

After Facebook updated their Whatsapp privacy policy, and a certain rich capitalist who doesn't like Facebook for reasons different then mine told the world to use Signal, Signal's downloads went up by 4,200%. As often happens when something becomes popular, the criticisms start to fly! For the record, I currently think promoting Signal is an important tactical strategy for the left. [I also think we should promote and install federated chat apps like conversations and element and delta chat whereever it is possible.] Here are some of the main criticisms I hear that I think are a distraction: Here are some criticisms that I think are nuanced: These last two are not exactly two sides of the same coin, but they are related. How Signal manages to balance privacy and protection from abuse will be the real test as to whether promoting Signal continues to be a useful strategy for the left.

17 January 2021

Wouter Verhelst: Software available through Extrepo

Just over 7 months ago, I blogged about extrepo, my answer to the "how do you safely install software on Debian without downloading random scripts off the Internet and running them as root" question. I also held a talk during the recent "MiniDebConf Online" that was held, well, online. The most important part of extrepo is "what can you install through it". If the number of available repositories is too low, there's really no reason to use it. So, I thought, let's look what we have after 7 months... To cut to the chase, there's a bunch of interesting content there, although not all of it has a "main" policy. Each of these can be enabled by installing extrepo, and then running extrepo enable <reponame>, where <reponame> is the name of the repository. Note that the list is not exhaustive, but I intend to show that even though we're nowhere near complete, extrepo is already quite useful in its current state:

Free software
  • The debian_official, debian_backports, and debian_experimental repositories contain Debian's official, backports, and experimental repositories, respectively. These shouldn't have to be managed through extrepo, but then again it might be useful for someone, so I decided to just add them anyway. The config here uses the deb.debian.org alias for CDN-backed package mirrors.
  • The belgium_eid repository contains the Belgian eID software. Obviously this is added, since I'm upstream for eID, and as such it was a large motivating factor for me to actually write extrepo in the first place.
  • elastic: the elasticsearch software.
  • Some repositories, such as dovecot, winehq and bareos contain upstream versions of their respective software. These two repositories contain software that is available in Debian, too; but their upstreams package their most recent release independently, and some people might prefer to run those instead.
  • The sury, fai, and postgresql repositories, as well as a number of repositories such as openstack_rocky, openstack_train, haproxy-1.5 and haproxy-2.0 (there are more) contain more recent versions of software packaged in Debian already by the same maintainer of that package repository. For the sury repository, that is PHP; for the others, the name should give it away. The difference between these repositories and the ones above is that it is the official Debian maintainer for the same software who maintains the repository, which is not the case for the others.
  • The vscodium repository contains the unencumbered version of Microsoft's Visual Studio Code; i.e., the codium version of Visual Studio Code is to code as the chromium browser is to chrome: it is a build of the same softare, but without the non-free bits that make code not entirely Free Software.
  • While Debian ships with at least two browsers (Firefox and Chromium), additional browsers are available through extrepo, too. The iridiumbrowser repository contains a Chromium-based browser that focuses on privacy.
  • Speaking of privacy, perhaps you might want to try out the torproject repository.
  • For those who want to do Cloud Computing on Debian in ways that isn't covered by Openstack, there is a kubernetes repository that contains the Kubernetes stack, the as well as the google_cloud one containing the Google Cloud SDK.

Non-free software While these are available to be installed through extrepo, please note that non-free and contrib repositories are disabled by default. In order to enable these repositories, you must first enable them; this can be accomplished through /etc/extrepo/config.yaml.
  • In case you don't care about freedom and want the official build of Visual Studio Code, the vscode repository contains it.
  • While we're on the subject of Microsoft, there's also Microsoft Teams available in the msteams repository. And, hey, skype.
  • For those who are not satisfied with the free browsers in Debian or any of the free repositories, there's opera and google_chrome.
  • The docker-ce repository contains the official build of Docker CE. While this is the free "community edition" that should have free licenses, I could not find a licensing statement anywhere, and therefore I'm not 100% sure whether this repository is actually free software. For that reason, it is currently marked as a non-free one. Merge Requests for rectifying that from someone with more information on the actual licensing situation of Docker CE would be welcome...
  • For gamers, there's Valve's steam repository.
Again, the above lists are not meant to be exhaustive. Special thanks go out to Russ Allbery, Kim Alvefur, Vincent Bernat, Nick Black, Arnaud Ferraris, Thorsten Glaser, Thomas Goirand, Juri Grabowski, Paolo Greppi, and Josh Triplett, for helping me build the current list of repositories. Is your favourite repository not listed? Create a configuration based on template.yaml, and file a merge request!

15 January 2021

Michael Prokop: Revisiting 2020

* Mainly to recall what happened last year and to give thoughts and plan for the upcoming year(s) I m once again revisiting my previous year (previous editions: 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013 + 2012). Due to the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, 2020 was special for several reasons, but overall I consider myself and my family privileged and am very grateful for that. In terms of IT events, I planned to attend Grazer Linuxdays and DebConf in Haifa/Israel. Sadly Grazer Linuxdays didn t take place at all, and DebConf took place online instead (which I didn t really participate in for several reasons). I took part in the well organized DENOG12 + ATNOG 2020/1 online meetings. I still organize our monthly Security Treff Graz (STG) meetups, and for half of the year, those meetings took place online (which worked OK-ish overall IMO). Only at the beginning of 2020, I managed to play Badminton (still playing in the highest available training class (in german: Kader ) at the University of Graz / Universit ts-Sportinstitut, USI). For the rest of the year except for ~2 weeks in October or so the sessions couldn t occur. Plenty of concerts I planned to attend were cancelled for obvious reasons, including the ones I would have played myself. But I managed to attend Jazz Redoute 2020 Dom im Berg, Martin Grubinger in Musikverein Graz and Emiliano Sampaio s Mega Mereneu Project at WIST Moserhofgasse (all before the corona situation kicked in). The concert from Ton Feinig & RTV Slovenia Big Band occurred under strict regulations in Summer, as well as Elektra Opera by Richard Strau in a very special setting (only one piano player instead of the orchestra because of a Corona case in the orchestra) in Autumn. At the beginning of 2020, I also visited Literaturshow Roboter mit Senf at Literaturhaus Graz. The lack of concerts and rehearsals also severely impacted my playing the drums (including at HTU BigBand Graz), which pretty much didn t take place. :( Grml-wise we managed to publish release 2020.06, codename Ausgehfuahangl. Regarding jenkins-debian-glue I tried to clarify its state and received some really lovely feedback. I consider 2020 as the year where I dropped regular usage of Jabber (so far my accounts still exist, but I m no longer regularly online and am not sure for how much longer I ll keep my accounts alive as such). Business-wise it was our seventh year of business with SynPro Solutions GmbH. No big news but steady and ongoing work with my other business duties Grml Solutions and Grml-Forensic. As usual, I shared childcare with my wife. Due to the corona situation, my wife got a new working schedule, which shuffled around our schedule a bit on Mondays + Tuesdays. Still, we managed to handle the homeschooling/distance learning quite well. Currently we re sitting in the third lockdown, and yet another round of homeschooling/distance learning is going on those days (let s see how long ). I counted 112 actual school days in all of 2020 for our older daughter with only 68 school days since our first lockdown on 16th of March, whereas we had 213(!) press conferences by our Austrian government in 2020. (Further rants about the situation in Austria snipped.) Book reading-wise I managed to complete 60 books (see Mein Lesejahr 2020 ). Once again, I noticed that what felt like good days for me always included reading books, so I ll try to keep my reading pace for 2021. I ll also continue with my hobbies Buying Books and Reading Books , to get worse at Tsundoku. Hoping for vaccination and a more normal 2021, Schwuppdiwupp!

9 January 2021

Thorsten Alteholz: My Debian Activities in December 2020

FTP master This month I only accepted 8 packages and like last month rejected 0. Despite the holidays 293 packages got accepted. Debian LTS This was my seventy-eighth month that I did some work for the Debian LTS initiative, started by Raphael Hertzog at Freexian. This month my all in all workload has been 26h. During that time I did LTS uploads of: Unfortunately package slirp has the same version in Stretch and Buster. So I first had to upload slirp/1:1.0.17-11 to unstable, in order to be allowed to fix the CVE in Buster and to finally upload a new version to Stretch. Meanwhile the fix for Buster has been approved by the Release Team and I am waiting for the next point release now. I also prepared a debdiff for influxdb, which will result in DSA-4823-1 in January. As there appeared new CVEs for openjpeg2, I did not do an upload yet. This is planned for January now. Last but not least I did some days of frontdesk duties. Debian ELTS This month was the thirtieth ELTS month. During my allocated time I uploaded: As well as for LTS, I did not finish work on all CVEs of openjpeg2, so the upload is postponed to January. Last but not least I did some days of frontdesk duties. Unfortunately I also had to give back some hours. Other stuff This month I uploaded new upstream versions of: I fixed one or two bugs in: I improved packaging of: Some packages just needed a source upload: and there have been even some new packages: With these uploads I finished the libosmocom- and libctl-transitions. The Debian Med Advent Calendar was again really successful this year. There was no new record, but with 109, the second most number of bugs has been closed.
year number of bugs closed
2011 63
2012 28
2013 73
2014 5
2015 150
2016 95
2017 105
2018 81
2019 104
2020 109
Well done everybody who participated. It is really nice to see that Andreas is no longer a lone wolf.

5 January 2021

Steve Kemp: Brexit has come

Nothing too much has happened recently, largely as a result of the pandemic killing a lot of daily interests and habits. However as a result of Brexit I'm having to do some paperwork, apparently I now need to register for permanent residency under the terms of the withdrawal agreement, and that will supersede the permanent residency I previously obtained. Of course as a UK citizen I've now lost the previously-available freedom of movement. I can continue to reside here in Helsinki, Finland, indefinitely, but I cannot now move to any other random EU country. It has crossed my mind, more than a few times, that I should attempt to achieve Finnish citizenship. As a legal resident of Finland the process is pretty simple, I just need two things: Of course the latter requirement is hard, I can understand a lot of spoken and written Finnish, but writing myself, and speaking a lot is currently beyond me. I need to sit down and make the required effort to increase my fluency. There is the alternative option of learning Swedish, which is a hack a lot of immigrants use: Finland has two official languages, and so the banks, the medical world, the tax-office, etc, are obliged to provide service in both. However daily life, ordering food at restaurants, talking to parents in the local neighborhood? Finnish, or English are the only real options. So if I went this route I'd end up in a weird situation where I had to learn a language to pass a test, but then would continue to need to learn more Finnish to live my life. That seems crazy, unless I were desperate for a second citizenship which I don't think I am. Learning Finnish has not yet been a priority, largely because I work in English in the IT-world, and of course when I first moved here I was working (remotely) for a UK company, and didn't have the time to attend lessons (because they were scheduled during daytime, on the basis that many immigrants are unemployed). Later we had a child, which meant that early-evening classes weren't a realistic option either. (Of course I learned a lot of the obvious things immediately upon moving, things like numbers, names for food, days of the week were essential. Without those I couldn't have bought stuff in shops and would have starved!) On the topic of languages a lot of people talk about how easy it is for children to pick up new languages, and while that is broadly true it is also worth remembering just how many years of correction and repetition they have to endure as part of the process. For example we have a child, as noted already, he is spoken to by everybody in Finnish. I speak to him in English, and he hears his mother and myself speaking English. But basically he's 100% Finnish with the exception of: If he speaks Finnish to me I pretend to not understand him, even when I do, just for consistency. As a result of that I've heard him tell strangers "Daddy doesn't speak Finnish" (in Finnish) when we've been stopped and asked for directions. He also translates what some other children have said into English for my benefit which is adorable Anyway he's four, and he's pretty amazing at speaking to everybody in the correct language - he's outgrown the phase where he'd mix different languages in the same sentence ("more leip ", "saisinko milk") - when I took him to the UK he surprised and impressed me by being able to understand a lot of the heavy/thick accents he'd never heard before. (I'll still need to train him on Rab C. Nesbitt when he's a wee bit older, but so far no worries.) So children learn languages, easily and happily? Yes and no. I've spent nearly two years correcting his English and he still makes the same mistake with gender. It's not a big deal, at all, but it's a reminder that while children learn this stuff, they still don't do it as easily as people imagine. I'm trying to learn and if I'd been corrected for two years over the same basic point you'd rightly think I was "slow", but actually that's just how it works. Learning languages requires a hell of a lot of practice, a lot of effort, and a lot of feedback/corrections. Specifically Finnish doesn't have gendered pronouns, the same word is used for "he" and "she". This leads to a lot of Finnish people, adults and children, getting the pronouns wrong in English. In the case of our child he'll say "Mommy is sleeping, when he wake up?" In the case of adults I've heard people say "My girlfriend is a doctor, he works in a hospital", or "My dad is an accountant, she works for a big firm". As I say I've spent around two years making this correction to the child, and he's still nowhere near getting it right. Kinda adorable actually:

3 January 2021

Enrico Zini: COVID-19 vaccines

COVID-19 vaccination has started, and this site tracks progress in Italy. This site, world-wide. Reverse Engineering the source code of the BioNTech/Pfizer SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine has a pretty good description of the BioNTech/Pfizer SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine, codon by codon, broken down in a way that I managed to follow. From the same author, DNA seen through the eyes of a coder

30 December 2020

John Goerzen: Airgapped / Asynchronous Backups with ZFS over NNCP

In my previous articles in the series on asynchronous communication with the modern NNCP tool, I talked about its use for asynchronous, potentially airgapped, backups. The first article, How & Why To Use Airgapped Backups laid out the foundations for this. Now let s dig into the details. Today s post will cover ZFS, because it has a lot of features that make it very easy to support in this setup. Non-ZFS backups will be covered later. The setup is actually about as simple as it is for SSH, but since people are less familiar with this kind of communication, I m going to try to go into more detail here. Assumptions I am assuming a setup where: Hardware Let s start with hardware for the machine to hold the backups. I initially considered a Raspberry Pi 4 with 8GB of RAM. That would probably have been a suitable machine, at least for smaller backup sets. However, none of the Raspberry Pi machines support hardware AES encryption acceleration, and my Pi4 benchmarks as about 60MB/s for AES encryption. I want my backups to be encrypted, and decided this would just be too slow for my purposes. Again, if you don t need encrypted backups or don t care that much about performance may people probably fall into this category you can have a fully-functional Raspberry Pi 4 system for under $100 that would make a fantastic backup server. I wound up purchasing a Qotom-Q355G4 micro PC with a Core i5 for about $315. It has USB 3 ports and is designed as a rugged, long-lasting system. I have been using one of their older Celeron-based models as my router/firewall for a number of years now and it s been quite reliable. For backup storage, you can get a USB 3 external drive. My own preference is to get a USB 3 toaster (device that lets me plug in SATA drives) so that I have more control over the underlying medium and can save the expense and hassle of a bunch of power supplies. In a future post, I will discuss drive rotation so you always have an offline drive. Then, there is the question of transport to the backup machine. A simple solution would be to have a heavily-firewalled backup system that has no incoming ports open but makes occasional outgoing connections to one specific NNCP daemon on the spooling machine. However, for airgapped operation, it would also be very simple to use nncp-xfer to transport the data across on a USB stick or some such. You could set up automounting for a specific USB stick plug it in, all the spooled data is moved over, then plug it in to the backup system and it s processed, and any outbound email traffic or whatever is copied to the USB stick at that point too. The NNCP page has some more commentary about this kind of setup. Both are fairly easy to set up, and NNCP is designed to be transport-agnostic, so in this article I m going to focus on how to integrate ZFS with NNCP. Operating System Of course, it should be no surprise that I set this up on Debian. As an added step, I did all the configuration in Ansible stored in a local git repo. This adds a lot of work, but it means that it is trivial to periodically wipe and reinstall if any security issue is suspected. The git repo can be copied off to another system for storage and takes the system from freshly-installed to ready-to-use state. Security There is, of course, nothing preventing you from running NNCP as root. The zfs commands, obviously, need to be run as root. However, from a privilege separation standpoint, I have chosen to run everything relating to NNCP as a nncp user. NNCP already does encryption, but if you prefer to have zero knowledge of the data even to NNCP, it s trivial to add gpg to the pipeline as well, and in fact I ll be demonstrating that in a future post for other reasons. Software Besides NNCP, there needs to be a system that generates the zfs send streams. For this project, I looked at quite a few. Most were designed to inspect the list of snapshots on a remote end, compare it to a list on the local end, and calculate a difference from there. This, of course, won t work for this situation. I realized my own simplesnap project was very close to being able to do this. It already used an algorithm of using specially-named snapshots on the machine being backed up, so never needed any communication about what snapshots were present where. All it needed was a few more options to permit sending to a stream instead of zfs receive. I made those changes and they are available in simplesnap 2.0.0 or above. That version has also been uploaded to sid, and will work fine as-is on buster as well. Preparing NNCP I m going to assume three hosts in this setup: The basic NNCP workflow documentation covers the basic steps. You ll need to run nncp-cfgnew on each machine. This generates a basic configuration, along with public and private keys for that machine. You ll copy the public key sets to the configurations of the other machines as usual. On the laptop, you ll add a via line like this:
backupsvr:  
  id: ....
  exchpub: ...
  signpub: ...
  noisepub: ...
  via: ["spooler"]
This tells NNCP that data destined for backupsvr should always be sent via spooler first. You can then arrange for the nncp-daemon to run on the spooler, and nncp-caller or nncp-call on the backupsvr. Or, alternatively, airgapped between the two with nncp-xfer. Generating Backup Data Now, on the laptop, install simplesnap (2.0.0 or above). Although you won t be backing up to the local system, simplesnap still maintains a hostlock in ZFS. Prepate a dataset for it:
zfs create tank/simplesnap
zfs set org.complete.simplesnap:exclude=on tank/simplesnap
Then, create a script /usr/local/bin/runsimplesnap like this:
#!/bin/bash
set -e
simplesnap --store tank/simplesnap --setname backups --local --host  hostname  \
   --receivecmd /usr/local/bin/simplesnap-queue \
   --noreap
su nncp -c '/usr/local/nncp/bin/nncp-toss -noprogress -quiet'
if ip addr   grep -q 192.168.65.64; then
  su nncp -c '/usr/local/nncp/bin/nncp-call -noprogress -quiet -onlinedeadline 1 spooler'
fi
The call to simplesnap sets it up to send the data to simplesnap-queue, which we ll create in a moment. The receivmd, plus noreap, sets it up to run without ZFS on the local system. The call to nncp-toss will process any previously-received inbound NNCP packets, if there are any. Then, in this example, we do a very basic check to see if we re on the LAN (checking 192.168.65.64), and if so, will establish a connection to the spooler to transmit the data. If course, you could also do this over the Internet, with tor, or whatever, but in my case, I don t want to automatically do this in case I m tethered to mobile. I figure if I want to send backups in that case, I can fire up nncp-call myself. You can also use nncp-caller to set up automated connections on other schedules; there are a lot of options. Now, here s what /usr/local/bin/simplesnap-queue looks like:
#!/bin/bash
set -e
set -o pipefail
DEST=" echo $1   sed 's,^tank/simplesnap/,,' "
echo "Processing $DEST" >&2
# stdin piped to this
su nncp -c "/usr/local/nncp/bin/nncp-exec -nice B -noprogress backupsvr zfsreceive '$DEST'" >&2
echo "Queued for $DEST" >&2
This is a pretty simple script. simplesnap will call it with a path based on the store, with the hostname after; so, for instance, tank/simplesnap/laptop/root or some such. This script strips off the leading tank/simplesnap (which is a local fragment), leaving the host and dataset paths. Then it just pipes it to nncp-exec. -nice B classifies it as low-priority bulk data (so if you have some more important interactive data, it would be sent first), then passes it to whatever the backupsvr defines as zfsreceive. Receiving ZFS backups In the NNCP configuration on the recipient s side, in the laptop section, we define what command it s allowed to run as zfsreceive:
      exec:  
        zfsreceive: ["/usr/bin/sudo", "-H", "/usr/local/bin/nncp-zfs-receive"]
       
We authorize the nncp user to run this under sudo in /etc/sudoers.d/local nncp:
Defaults env_keep += "NNCP_SENDER"
nncp ALL=(root) NOPASSWD: /usr/local/bin/nncp-zfs-receive
The NNCP_SENDER is the public key ID of the sending node when nncp-toss processes the incoming data. We can use that for sanity checking later. Now, here s a basic nncp-zfs-receive script:
#!/bin/bash
set -e
set -o pipefail
STORE=backups/simplesnap
DEST="$1"
# now process stdin
runcommand zfs receive -o readonly=on -x mountpoint "$STORE/$DEST"
And there you have it all the basics are in place. Update 2020-12-30: An earlier version of this article had zfs receive -F instead of zfs receive -o readonly=on -x mountpoint . These changed arguments are more robust.
Update 2021-01-04: I am now recommending zfs receive -u -o readonly=on ; see my successor article for more. Enhancements You could enhance the nncp-zfs-receive script to improve logging and error handling. For instance:
#!/bin/bash
set -e
set -o pipefail
STORE=backups/simplesnap
# $1 will be the host/dataset
DEST="$1"
HOST=" echo "$1"   sed 's,/.*,,g' "
if [ -z "$HOST" ]; then
   echo "Malformed command line"
   exit 5
fi
# Log a message
logit ()  
   logger -p info -t " basename "$0" [$$]" "$1"
 
# Log an error message
logerror ()  
   logger -p err -t " basename "$0" [$$]" "$1"
 
# Log stdin with the given code.  Used normally to log stderr.
logstdin ()  
   logger -p info -t " basename "$0" [$$/$1]"
 
# Run command, logging stderr and exit code
runcommand ()  
   logit "Running $*"
   if "$@" 2> >(logstdin "$1") ; then
      logit "$1 exited successfully"
      return 0
   else
       RETVAL="$?"
       logerror "$1 exited with error $RETVAL"
       return "$RETVAL"
   fi
 
exiterror ()  
   logerror "$1"
   echo "$1" 1>&2
   exit 10
 
# Sanity check
if [ "$HOST" = "laptop" ]; then
  if [ "$NNCP_SENDER" != "12345678" ]; then
    exiterror "Host $HOST doesn't match sender $NNCP_SENDER"
  fi
else
  exiterror "Unknown host $HOST"
fi
runcommand zfs receive -F "$STORE/$DEST"
Now you ll capture the ZFS receive output in syslog in a friendly way, so you can look back later why things failed if they did. Further notes on NNCP nncp-toss will examine the exit code from an invocation. If it is nonzero, it will keep the command (and associated stdin) in the queue and retry it on the next invocation. NNCP does not guarantee order of execution, so it is possible in some cases that ZFS streams may be received in the wrong order. That is fine here; zfs receive will exit with an error, and nncp-toss will just run it again after the dependent snapshots have been received. For non-ZFS backups, a simple sequence number can handle this issue.

27 December 2020

John Goerzen: Asynchronous Email: Exim over NNCP (or UUCP)

Following up to yesterday s article about how NNCP rehabilitates asynchronous communication with modern encryption and onion routing, here is the first of my posts showing how to put it into action. Email is a natural fit for async; in fact, much of early email was carried by UUCP. It is useful for an airgapped machine to be able to send back messages; errors from cron, results of handling incoming data, disk space alerts, etc. (Of course, this would apply to a non-airgapped machine also). The NNCP documentation already describes how to do this for Postfix. Here I will show how to do it for Exim. A quick detour to UUCP land When you encounter a system such as email that has instructions for doing something via UUCP, that should be an alert to you that here is some very relevant information for doing this same thing via NNCP. The syntax is different, but broadly, here s a table of similar NNCP commands:
Purpose UUCP NNCP
Connect to remote system uucico -s, uupoll nncp-call, nncp-caller
Receive connection (pipe, daemon, etc) uucico (-l or similar) nncp-daemon
Request remote execution, stdin piped in uux nncp-exec
Copy file to remote machine uucp nncp-file
Copy file from remote machine uucp nncp-freq
Process received requests uuxqt nncp-toss
Move outbound requests to dir (for USB stick, airgap, etc) N/A nncp-xfer
Create streaming package of outbound requests N/A nncp-bundle
If you used UUCP back in the day, you surely remember bang paths. I will not be using those here. NNCP handles routing itself, rather than making the MTA be aware of the network topology, so this simplifies things considerably. Sending from Exim to a smarthost One common use for async email is from a satellite system: one that doesn t receive mail, or have local mailboxes, but just needs to get email out to the Internet. This is a common situation even for conventionally-connected systems; in Exim speak, this is a satellite system that routes mail via a smarthost. That is, every outbound message goes to a specific target, which then is responsible for eventual delivery (over the Internet, LAN, whatever). This is fairly simple in Exim. We actually have two choices for how to do this: bsmtp or rmail mode. bsmtp (batch SMTP) is the more modern way, and is essentially a derivative of SMTP that explicitly can be queued asynchronously. Basically it s a set of SMTP commands that can be saved in a file. The alternative is rmail (which is just an alias for sendmail these days), where the data is piped to rmail/sendmail with the recipients given on the command line. Both can work with Exim and NNCP, but because we re doing shiny new things, we ll use bsmtp. These instructions are loosely based on the Using outgoing BSMTP with Exim HOWTO. Some of these may assume Debianness in the configuration, but should be easily enough extrapolated to other configs as well. First, configure Exim to use satellite mode with minimal DNS lookups (assuming that you may not have working DNS anyhow). Then, in the Exim primary router section for smarthost (router/200_exim4-config_primary in Debian split configurations), just change transport = remote_smtp_smarthost to transport = nncp. Now, define the NNCP transport. If you are on Debian, you might name this transports/40_exim4-config_local_nncp:
nncp:
  debug_print = "T: nncp transport for $local_part@$domain"
  driver = pipe
  user = nncp
  batch_max = 100
  use_bsmtp
  command = /usr/local/nncp/bin/nncp-exec -noprogress -quiet hostname_goes_here rsmtp
.ifdef REMOTE_SMTP_HEADERS_REWRITE
  headers_rewrite = REMOTE_SMTP_HEADERS_REWRITE
.endif
.ifdef REMOTE_SMTP_RETURN_PATH
  return_path = REMOTE_SMTP_RETURN_PATH
.endif
This is pretty straightforward. We pipe to nncp-exec, run it as the nncp user. nncp-exec sends it to a target node and runs whatever that node has called rsmtp (the command to receive bsmtp data). When the target node processes the request, it will run the configured command and pipe the data in to it. More complicated: Routing to various NNCP nodes Perhaps you would like to be able to send mail directly to various NNCP nodes. There are a lot of ways to do that. Fundamentally, you will need a setup similar to the UUCP example in Exim s manualroute manual, which lets you define how to reach various hosts via UUCP/NNCP. Perhaps you have a star topology (every NNCP node exchanges email with a central hub). In the NNCP world, you have two choices of how you do this. You could, at the Exim level, make the central hub the smarthost for all the side nodes, and let it redistribute mail. That would work, but requires decrypting messages at the hub to let Exim process. The other alternative is to configure NNCP to just send to the destinations via the central hub; that takes advantage of onion routing and doesn t require any Exim processing at the central hub at all. Receiving mail from NNCP On the receiving side, first you need to configure NNCP to authorize the execution of a mail program. In the section of your receiving host where you set the permissions for the client, include something like this:
      exec:  
        rsmtp: ["/usr/sbin/sendmail", "-bS"]
       
The -bS option is what tells Exim to receive BSMTP on stdin. Now, you need to tell Exim that nncp is a trusted user (able to set From headers arbitrarily). Assuming you are running NNCP as the nncp user, then add MAIN_TRUSTED_USERS = nncp to a file such as /etc/exim4/conf.d/main/01_exim4-config_local-nncp. That s it! Some hosts, of course, both send and receive mail via NNCP and will need configurations for both.

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