Andy’s Blog

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A little knowledge really is a dangerous thing

I made a slight mistake yesterday. I managed to remove myself from the admin group. Which of course means I can no longer run ‘sudo’, which means I can’t put my self back in the group.

What happened was I wanted to add myself to a new group. For this I typed: usermod -G newgroup myuser what I didn’t realise was this replaced my list of groups instead of adding to them. Luckily I typed groups myuser to check what groups I was in. On discovering that I was not in all the groups I should be I used groups to save a copy of all the groups I was supposed to be in (this was my previous groups because I hadn’t logged out).

Unfortunately I could not replace my groups because that would require me to be root and sudo was checking I was an admin (which I no longer was).

Don’t worry though, I rebooted and selected recovery mode and restored the groups I should have had. But it just goes to show a little knowledge can be dangerous. (In hindsight it would have been wiser to have used the “Users and Groups” GUI program. Of course it could have been done using the CLI with adduser myuser newgroup).

Maybe I should create a backup admin account in case I mess something up again?

At least I have learnt something, and isn’t that what matters?

April 4, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Low cost but function laptop?

I have been considering getting a laptop however I don’t want to spend a huge amount of money on it.

Of course there are Laptops like the eeePC and the OLPC however these are rather low spec.

As this would be my only laptop it needs to be reasonably functional. At least 25-30 Gig hard drive. Enough processor to run things like Eclipse and compile programs reasonably. WiFi is a must and obviously it must be capable of running Linux (though not necessarily pre-installed). As cheap as possible would be nice, preferably under £300 (though maybe a bit more depending on the features). I do not need to run Windows on the machine, I have Windows on my dual boot PC and rarely run it any more so paying extra to get something Windows compatible would be a waste.

I am considering eeePC and using either SD cards or an external hard drive but carrying round an external drive could be tiresome and would drain the battery much faster.

Another option is using second hand refurbished laptops. Which companies sell these and waht is the best way of going about getting one? Do people think they are worth it it would it be better to buy a brand new machine (Considering I am on a budget).

Anyone here have any suggestions or advice, particularly with respect to checking whether laptops will work well with Linux?

February 18, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment