Unix

Converting files from Windows format to Unix format with dos2unix

Ever run a shell script and get the following error?

./dosfile.sh : bad interpreter: No such file or directory The error may look like there is a problem with your scripts SHEBANG where you specify the interpreter, so you go look and the line contains #!/bin/bash which is correct. So then you start wondering if there is a problem with the /bin/bash binary, and all sorts of thoughts of what would happen if /bin/bash was missing or broken start racing through your head.

8 examples of Bash if statements to get you started

Shell scripting is a fundamental skill that every systems administrator should know. The ability to script mundane & repeatable tasks allows a sysadmin to perform these tasks quickly. These scripts can be used for anything from installing software, configuring software or quickly resolving a known issue. A fundamental core of any programming language is the if statement. In this article I am going to show several examples of using if statements and explain how they work.

Managing DNS locally with /etc/hosts

Before the advent of a distributed domain name system; networked computers used local files to map hostnames to IP addresses. On Unix systems this file was named /etc/hosts or “the hosts file”. In those days, networks were small and managing a file with a handful of hosts was easy. However as the networks grew so did the methods of mapping hostnames and IP addresses. In modern days with the internet totaling at somewhere around 246 million domain names (as of 2012) the hosts file has been replaced with a more scalable distributed DNS service.

5 Bash for loop examples to make command line tasks more efficient

One of the things that excited me while learning Unix/Linux was how quickly one can perform tasks via the command line. Bash is a fully functional scripting language that incorporates Variables, Loops and If/Then statements; the bash shell allows a user to use these functions while performing adhoc tasks via the command line. This is also true for the other common shells such as bourne, korn shell, and csh.

Setting process CPU priority with nice and renice

Nice is a command in Unix and Linux operating systems that allows for the adjustment of the “Niceness” value of processes. Adjusting the “niceness” value of processes allows for setting an advised CPU priority that the kernel’s scheduler will use to determine which processes get more or less CPU time. In Linux this niceness value can be ignored by the scheduler, however other Unix implementations can treat this differently.

Grepping a file without using cat, and other grep tricks

The grep command is a command that most Linux users learn early on, and many times they learn to use it via pipes (stdin). Because of this some Linux users just assume that grep can only be used with stdin; it’s ok, I was one of those too! Before I continue with some grep tricks I want to clarify the basic grep usage. Stop Doing This: $ cat file.log | grep "something" something Do This More:

ssh-keygen: Creating SSH Private/Public Keys

Are you tired of trying to memorize tons of passwords on different systems? Or do you simply want to have a faceless user SSH between two systems without being asked for a password? Well you are in luck because today we will be covering SSH keys. SSH Servers have the ability to authenticate users using public/private keys. In the case of pass-phrase less keys this allows users to ssh from one system to another without typing a password.

Packing and Unpacking files with GNU Tar

One of the most basic tasks for any Sysadmin is packing and unpacking files for various reasons. While there are many ways to perform this task GNU Tar is probably one of the most recognized and commonly used tools by Linux/Unix users. A little history on tar The tar command is a command that appeared in the early days of Unix and has had several changes made over time. Originally the command was used to take files, combine them into one file and write them to a tape archive (tar).

Removing Files and Directories with rm and rmdir

Normally on this blog I tend to write about more complicated tasks or fancy Linux tricks and completely overlook some of the most basic tasks that a SysAdmin needs to know. Today I have decided that I will make my blog a little more comprehensive and add some posts with some of the basics. Along with this I will be starting a new category, called Sysadmin Basics and I will try to post an additional article each week that covers some of the more basic concepts and commands used by Linux and Unix Sysadmins.

How to force GPFS (or other tools) to connect via an alternate ssh port

Recently I have been playing with the Global Parallel File System, which is a clustered file system from IBM. When setting up a cluster you can configure GPFS to utilize SSH/SCP to send administrative tasks to the other nodes in the cluster. The problem I ran into was that in my environment I do not run SSH over port 22 (for various reasons I wont get into). Needless to say once I configured SSH to listen on an alternate port GPFS stopped working.