Improvised Tools: Emergency Cage Nut Tool

**Audience: **Datacenter ninjas, really lazy people who can’t be bothered to find a proper tool

I’m almost embarrassed to post this

Mostly, because it is such a simple “hack” it hardly requires mention.  Secondly, I’m ashamed to tell you how many times I have had to resort to this.

Step One:

Find a slot cover from an old (or unnoticed) computer.

Step Two:

Bend it.

If you don’t have a Bending Unit 22 handy just use some pliers.  Depending on the width of the end you may need to trim it down in a bit

Care to share?

Do you have any handy improvised tools that have saved the day?

Quickie: Gmail Backups With Getmail

Audience: *nix users that want to backup their gmail

Today I have a real quick method of backing up your gmail email.

Call me paranoid, but no matter what it is, if it’s important to me I like to have more than one copy.

Gmail Setup

  • Log into gmail and go to “Settings”

  • Make sure “IMAP” is turned on

Your Setup

  • Install “getmail” (available for most flavors of linux, bsd and solaris)

  • in your home directory create a “.getmail” folder

  • in the “.getmail” folder create a file called getmailrc with the contents below

  • setup your crontab. I am using the following

  • enjoy the peace of mind that you can browse all of your gmail, even during the zombie apocolypse


[retriever] type = SimpleIMAPSSLRetriever server = username = [email protected] password = PASSWORD port = 993 mailboxes = ('INBOX', '[Gmail]/All Mail')

[destination] type = Maildir path = ~/Gmail/


0 3 * * * getmail --dont-delete -n

Getmailrc Explained

mailboxes = ('INBOX', '[Gmail]/All Mail') - the mailboxes listed must be a tuple so you need to have more than one mailbox defined (otherwise it defaults to your INBOX).  ’INBOX’ is your inbox, ‘[Gmail]/All Mail’ is a virtual folder for every email in your gmail account

path = ~/Gmail/ - this sends your messages to a folder, other than ~/Mail/, so it doesn’t clutter up your regular system mail


Try getmail --verbose --dont-delete --all (probably within a screen) to download the initial batch of mail


Yep, there are probably plenty.  Right now it just dumps everything into one “folder”.  I don’t even know if there is a good way to sort these by folder (“label” in gmail-speak).  What do you think?


2010-01-21: Over at someone recommended a post by Matt Cutts.  Thanks cpu_cyclist

KROS Radio Interview - Wireless Security

KROS Banner

On December 3rd, I was asked to join Connor Anderson (Riverfront Technology) to discuss the wireless survey I recently finished.

We went to the KROS radio station and talked for half an hour on different wireless security topics, as well as other trends in the IT industry.

Enjoy it here

I have to admit, it’s pretty weird listening to your own voice on the radio, so I haven’t listened all the way through.  What are your thoughts on the state of wireless security?  Is this something that your typical user should be concerned with?  Should the manufactures make it “secure by default”?