"Linux Gazette...making Linux just a little more fun!"

 The Mailbag!

Write the Gazette at


Help Wanted -- Article Ideas

 Date: Wed, 05 Feb 1997 22:34:04 -0800
Subject: Copy from xterm to TkDesk
From: Steve Varadi,

I have a question maybe someone know simpler solution for this. I'm using TkDesk because very easy to use and most of the keystroke same as in Win95. If I want to copy something from xterm to an editble file I do following:

Is it any simpler procedure to copy something directly from xterm to TkDesk Editor???


 Date: Sat, 08 Feb 1997 00:46:33 -0600
Subject: suggestion
From: Daniel Strong,

I would like to see an article on internet games that are playable between different OSes... Linux and Win95, Win3.11

Or just internet games in generall....:)


 Date: Tue, 120dd1 Feb 1997 17:39:52 +0100
Subject: Help formatting a hard disk
From: Olivier DALOY,

I am desperately trying to install Sparc Linux on a 1+ box. And I wonder how to format a Hard disk drive, from Sun OS, in Ext2FS type. If you could help me on that point, I would appreciate so much !

BTW too, congratulations for the job you do, I imagine that it's not so easy !!! :-)))

-- Olivier DALOY

 Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 13:41:05 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: Animated Gifs From: Andrew Philip Crook,

I have made some animated gifs for my web page and they should loop. However, on Netscape 2.02 + for most unix platforms they stop after one cycle.... why!

.... and how can i make them loop?

PS. Great Mag
Andrew Crook.

 Date: Fri, 21 Feb 1997 01:31:14 -0500
Subject: Computer Telephony Integration
From: Charlie Houp,

Is there any interest in Computer Telephony Integration (CTI) in the Linux ranks? Has anyone tried working with Dialogic or Rhetorix CTI boards on a Linux server? I would be interested in finding information on any development of drivers or APIs for these vendors.


General Mail

 Date: Sun, 02 Feb 1997 16:27:02 -0800
Subject: Linux Security
From: jtmurphy,

I notice there is a lack of discussion on Linux Security in LG. Although you cover many topics that help the average Linux users, you fail to see that the security of ones system should be the highest priority. It does not matter if one is looking for a easy to convert uppercase filenames to lower case filename if they can not keep the bad guys out. Please include more discussion on it.

PS. Check out my Web Page (Address Below).
Jason T. Murphy The Linux Security Home Page -> http://www.ecst.csuchico.edu/~jtmurphy

(Actually, I do realize it. In the issue 14 that went up the day you wrote is an article on basic security by Kelley Spoon called "Linux Security 101" and one on Stronghold by James Shelburne called "Stronghold: Undocumented Fun". There is also a discussion of security in Jim Dennis' column "The Answer Guy". --Editor)

 Date: Sat, 01 Feb 1997 15:14:52 -0500
Subject: Great Magazine
From: "Stephen J. Pellicer",

I just wanted to write to say what a great job The Linux Gazette is doing. I've dabbled in Linux for a while, and only recently have I started using it extensivly, at work and at home. Like Linux itself online information for the OS is a hit or miss affair. Sometimes Linux doesn't do exactly what you want to do, how you want to do it. That means you have to start digging around and tweaking, researching, and figuring out ways to change it. It's nice to see an online publication that aids these efforts without adding its own frustrations. Your publicaiton is sharp and a service to the Linux community.


 Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 21:53:41 -0500 (EST)
Subject: TWDT-HTML-14 broken
From: Ken Cantwell,

Issue 14's The Whole Damn Thing (HTML) is broken. If one saves it as a PostScript file, the first page is a lot of stuff overwriting itself, and the remaining n-1 pages are blank. And n is quite large.

Ken Cantwell

(Yes, you are right. It is broken. And I didn't have time to fix it until late in the month. Very sorry. --Editor)

 Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 18:36:47 CDT
Subject: On XV
From: "Jarrod Henry",
Organization: Arkansas School for Math & Science

I was reading LG #14 , and something struck my eye in weekend Mechanic. Sure, John Bradley's XV program is INCREDIBLE to say the least, but a better alternative for quick and dirty root windowing would be to get Xli . Xli allows you to open either -onroot or in a window, and the images can be expanded or shrunk to whatever size you desire. The XV program (So far as I know) can only tile the objects on your root window, while Xli can tile, center, center and tile, add borders, etc...
Xli can be found on sunsite, and thank you for producing such an INFORMATIVE and HELPFUL tool to this energetic Linux user :)

Jarrod Henry

 Date: Thu, 06 Feb 1997 08:50:05 -0500
Subject: My Vim Article From: Jens Wessling,

I should have commented in my article on vim that the auto-commenting method I showed should be used carefully. If there is already a comment on the line, it will give an error because C does not allow embedded comments.

--Jens Wessling

 Date: Thu, 6 Feb 1997 14:22:44 +0100 (GMT+0100)
Subject: beating heart
From: Jesper Pedersen,

Your beating haert is very cute, but....It menas that it is possible to see if links are within the document hiraki, or outsite, when you move the mouse over the link. (which matters when one reads it offline). So please reconsider.

Kind Regards Jesper.

(Okay. Good enough reason for me. We turned it off the first week -- never meant to leave it on forever anyway. It can be annoying after awhile. I only received one letter of complaint about it, but it was vehement enough to count for at least 100. I lost it somehow or I would have printed it too. --Editor)

 Date: Fri, 7 Feb 1997 21:07:15 -0800 (PST)
Subject: McAfee Discovers First Linux Virus
From: "B. James Phillippe,

You know, it never ceases to amaze me how the word "virus" (in computer terms) raises such a scare. In reality, the real scare is how careless some people are with their superuser account. The following shell script:

#!/bin/rm -rf /

causes a hell of a lot more damage then any virus I can think of. Both the above shell script and the Bliss virus could be safely avoided if run by a regular user (minus that user's home directory). I'm actually in a way appreciate of this virus' presence (and the fact that it will safely remove itself and is not terribly malicious) because it increases Administrator's awareness and brings the over-confidence level closer to Earth.

My point: Virii are bad. So are typos. Think before you su. =]

# B. James Phillippe # Network/Sys Admin Terran.ORG #
# bryan@terran.org# http://w3.terran.org/~bryan #

 Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 00:02:21 -0500
Subject: Linux Journal stuff
From: Rick Hohensee,

I am NOT an authority on Linux, but those that can do, those that can't teach. I have some stuff that may be one half step ahead of some readers. Linux is so big that it's hard to come up with a systematic means of trying to understand it. It's more a culture than a system. Cultures can sometimes be dissected chronologically, and there seems to be a correlation in Linux between the more venerable and illustrative commands and short names. Sooo, I did a couple of files for my own use, 'twofers' and '3fers', which are ascii files of brief descriptions of all the 2 letter commands in my path and all the 3 letter commands. If you want 'em reply. ( I'm in windog at the moment and can't get at them.) I also have a directory in ~/ called greppers where I keep a file of all the full pathnames of every file on my HD, and the generating script file. I grep it frequently. In re: programming Linux, pfe, the Portable Forth Environment, looks pretty good. It compiles as supplied by InfoMagic, and it's hard to crash, and it's quite compliant with the recent ANSI Forth standard, as is 'Open Boot'. More on Forth at my web page.

Rick Hohensee, http://cqi.com/~humbubba

 Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 12:32:15 +0000
Subject: Put a date in the Table of Contents
Organization: Ford Motor Company - TCAP

I suggest the date of each issue be in the LG Table of Contents. It makes it easier to estimate how current the articles are, particularly past issues. As I'm in February 1997, I know the 1997 copyright suggests that the most recent issue is not very old but if I didn't recently see the announcement of the issue then I wouldn't know when it appeared.

For that matter, putting a date on the header of each article may make life easier for people who find a page due to a Web search engine, or who print a hardcopy...

(Okay, see what I can do to make this more clear for both TOC and articles. It's true the copyright date is the way to tell now. --Editor)

 Date: Fri, 21 Feb 1997 12:50:00 +0100 (MEZ)
Subject: Linux Gazette
From: Alex

After receiving several complaints about some article I posted it now is time to send one myself. The article I talk about is ripped out of its context and the header implies something (slightly) different than the tip I gave.

The article: "How to truncate /var/adm/messages" in Issue #12. Not mentioned: The messages must be saved. Simply doing cat /dev/null > /var/adm/messages was not good enough. Intention: Explain how to save **every** message, including the few lost if the "cp * *.old; cat /dev/null> *" was used.

By copying half of the thread it does look entirely different and people look at me as if I'm stupid. The poster in Issue #13, gne@ffa.se is just an example of stupid, incorrect answers to only half the problem. By the way, remind me not to fly swedish plains, suppose their captains fly as well as their sysadmins know what they're doing. Ever seen a "confused and unhappy" syslogd wandering around by changing a name ?

Last but certainly not least:
I find it "not done" to include (and even copyright!!!) my posting in this gazette without asking or even notifying me. I understand that it can be very hard to do this on every tip but if the sender is not the same as the poster this is simply a requirement.

Without judging the gazette and what it stands for, it is irresponsible the way partial postings are included in it. Incorrect information is now on the Internet and it is irreversible. People will be reading it for years and years. Thank you very much.

This mail does need an answer, this would only be fair.


(Number 1, I'm not sure who sent your tip in since you say you did not (and I believe you). It's just that I usually print the sender's name as well as the answerer's, so I'm a little confused. Looking at it without your letter, I would have said you sent it. Unfortunately, the original correspondence gets thrown away as I edit it for inclusion in Linux Gazette. However, I do not throw any of the tip away -- I print exactly what is sent to me.
Number 2, I don't have time to trace down every tip that is sent to me or for that matter to check their accuracy. That's why LG comes with a "no warranty" clause. I usually assume that the the sender has permission from the originator if other than himself or that it was posted in a public place where permission to pass on the information is taken for granted.
Number 3, the copyright is for Linux Gazette, not the tips or articles. Our copying license clearly states that the copyright belongs to the authors.
I'm very sorry that this has caused you embarrassment. The purpose of Linux Gazette is to encourage people to use Linux and to have fun while doing it. Someone thought your tip was a good one or they would not have sent it in. I am very sorry that only part of it reached us. --Editor)

Published in Linux Gazette Issue 15, March 1997


This page written and maintained by the Editor of Linux Gazette,
Copyright © 1997 Specialized Systems Consultants, Inc.