Category Archives: How-To

Blocks with friends: How to run your own Minecraft server

of ArsTechnica teaches us how to run a Minecraft server for fun and … well pretty much for fun.

Finally, hosting the code yourself on a dedicated server in your closet is the most complex option, but can also be the cheapest and most flexible, assuming you have spare hardware lying around. For smaller Minecraft instances where you expect to only have a couple of players—for example, if you just want to play Minecraft with your kids—you can even run the server on your main computer without needing a separate piece of hardware.

In this guide, bits of which have appeared on my personal blog over the last few months, we will walk through some fairly generic instructions which should apply to both a VPS and self-hosting. After that, we’ll move on to more advanced options that you can implement to spice up your Minecraft hosting experience. We’re going to burn more words talking about how to make this all work with Linux than with other operating systems, since Linux is the most common option for hosting; if you’re using a VPS, you’ll almost certainly be using Linux, and if you’re hosting out of your home, that’s probably what you should use as well. However, don’t feel left out if you want to get a Minecraft server running on Windows or OS X—we’ll include you, too!

via Blocks with friends: How to run your own Minecraft server | Ars Technica.

InfoSec Resources – Noobz Guide for Setting Up a Vulnerable Lab for Pentesting

Jay Turla of the Infosec Institute introduces us to a bunch of free tools, utilities, and resources to set up a lab where we can practice our penetration testing and elite haxxor skills:

You don’t need to pay a single penny in setting up a pentesting lab because there are a lot of vulnerable distros and web applications that are open source, free and easy to customize. All you need is virtualization software and virtual images in order to run a vulnerable lab.

Good stuff via InfoSec Resources – Noobz Guide for Setting Up a Vulnerable Lab for Pentesting.

No sound from newly-installed Angry Birds on iPad

I decided to find out what all the Angry Birds fuss was about, and installed it on my first-gen iPad today.

It sure isn’t very exciting without any sound! So after a bit of Googling and reading some tips like this, I discovered that since I had changed the side-switch from Mute to Lock Rotation, and I had locked the rotation when the game was installed, the game defaulted to thinking that the iPad was muted.


  • Close Angry Birds
  • Go into Settings, set Side Switch to Mute
  • Mute, then un-Mute the iPad
  • Set back to Lock Rotation
  • Re-launch Angry Birds, hear sound
  • Enjoy the sounds of squawking birds and desperate pigs.

[Matlab] starting error on Ubuntu – not found

I had a problem similar to this today, but the posted fix is outdated.

The error I saw was:

mikes@ubuntu12-04:~/matlab $ matlab
/usr/local/bin/matlab: 1: /usr/local/MATLAB/R2012a/bin/util/ /lib/ not found

This is on a 32-bit installation of Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, and the required symlink was:

sudo ln -s /lib/i386-linux-gnu/ /lib/

Matlab now launches without errors.

Connecting from a Solaris 10 box via USB to Serial adapter to the console of a switch

How to connect from a Solaris 10 device to the console of a switch via USB adapter:

Step 1: Plug in the USB adapter. In this example, I have a Prolific Technology Inc. USB-Serial Controller plugged into the console port of a Cisco 2900 XL switch.
Step 2: Run dmesg to see if it was recognized, and to find out its device info:

Apr 12 13:42:34 nerdherd-sol usba: [ID 912658] USB 1.10 device (usb67b,2303) operating at full speed (USB 1.x) on USB 1.10 root hub: device@6, usbsprl0 at bus address 2
Apr 12 13:42:34 nerdherd-sol usba: [ID 349649] Prolific Technology Inc. USB-Serial Controller
Apr 12 13:42:34 nerdherd-sol genunix: [ID 936769] usbsprl0 is /pci@0,0/pci108e,534a@2/device@6
Apr 12 13:42:34 nerdherd-sol genunix: [ID 408114] /pci@0,0/pci108e,534a@2/device@6 (usbsprl0) online

Step 3: Look for the device number, and remember the path and number, you’ll need it in a second:

[mikes@nerdherd-sol:~] 197 % ls /dev/cua (or /dev/term)

Step 4: Edit /etc/remote, and add an entry pointing to the device number above. I copied the ‘hardwire’ line and called my USB adapter ‘softwire’:

-bash-3.00# vi /etc/remote
"/etc/remote" 60 lines, 1969 characters
# The next 17 lines are for the PCMCIA serial/modem cards.
## [17+ lines snipped]

Save and exit.
Step 6: Connect using tip (saving /etc/remote was Step 5):

[mikes@nerdherd-sol:~] 199 % tip softwire

C2900XL Boot Loader (C2900-HBOOT-M) Version 11.2(8.2)SA6, MAINTENANCE INTERIM SOFTWARE
Compiled Wed 23-Jun-99 18:03 by boba

Step 7: Profit! Now I don’t need to keep a Windows machine around just to run putty or hyperterm.
(Note: the ‘connected’ message was from tip, indicating that it was connected to the USB adapter. After that, the console output from the switch is displayed.)

Subnetting and Wildcard masks….love them or hate them

burleyman1 sent this link out to LinkedIn’s Cisco Certifications group:

Subnetting, love it or hate it if you are in the networking field it needs to become your friend. I have gone over a bunch of “easy” ways to learn subnetting and wildcard masks and to be honest some of them confused the heck out of me. So what I have written down is something I put together that helped me get it and to be able to do subnetting quicker and in a lot of cases in my head. So here it is, please let me know if this was helpful or confusing.

In subnetting the only thing you really need to memorize is…..

And then he goes through a simple way of finding the Magic Number (256 – subnet mask), and then subtract 2 to find the number of possible hosts on that mask.

via Subnetting and Wildcard masks….love them or hate them | burleyman1.

Guest under VMware Server on Win 7 Cannot Network

While running VMware Server 2.0.2-203138 on Windows 7, I experienced the following issue:

  • Installed guests assigned to VMnet0 can not ping or access any hosts aside from other VMware guests.
  • My NIC is a: Realtek RTL8168C(P)/8111C(P) Family PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet NIC (NDIS 6.20)
  • In the NIC properties, the VMware Bridge Protocol is enabled.

Guests could see each other and communicate on VMnet0, but cannot ping the host or anything beyond the host.

In Windows 7’s Network and Sharing center, only NIC is listed under “Internet Access”, and VMnet1 and VMnet8 are listed under “No network access,” but this seems to be normal.

From the Start menu, I opened Manage Virtual Networks, and the Summary page told me VMnet0 was supposed to automatically bridge to some adapter.  Apparently, it wasn’t doing so.

At the Host Virtual Network Mapping tab, I was able to specify that I wanted VMnet0 to use the Realtek NIC.

After clicking Apply/OK and waiting a bit for VMware and the guests to figure out just what in tarnation had just changed, guest networking began working as expected.

Within my Solaris 10 guest, I then created /etc/resolv.conf, added the two Google DNS servers, and copied /etc/nsswitch.dns to /etc/nsswitch.conf:

# touch /etc/resolv.conf
# vi /etc/resolv.conf

Add the text:

nameserver # my router
nameserver # google
nameserver # google

And lastly:

# cp nsswitch.dns nsswitch.conf