Northward Midget Pole to Pole


ssh asking for password when it shouldn’t

Posted by Quinn

After a recent Ubuntu upgrade, one of my frequented remote servers stopped accepting my public key and was prompting me for my password.  The password is gross and unwieldy and I was most put-out, I must say.  So, I googled the title of this post.  Mostly suggestions to check the permissions of various files.  All of mine were locked tight to user-only, including my home directory.

Of course, I'd already tried ssh -vvv to get all the debugging output.  Unfortunately, I zoomed in on the following message:

debug1: Next authentication method: publickey
debug2: we did not send a packet, disable method

Instead of this one a little further up:

debug1: Skipping ssh-dss key /home/ME/.ssh/keyfiles/ME.key - not in PubkeyAcceptedKeyTypes

Rather than add ssh-dss to the supported types, I just created a new key with ssh-keygen.   An ssh-copy-id later, everything worked.

... except when it didn't.  Adding the following to ~/.ssh/config</tt for the offending host worked:

    PubkeyAcceptedKeyTypes +ssh-dss

Tagged as: , No Comments

Shell Nuggets: Quickie Tabulizer

Posted by Quinn

I'm real bad about things lining up.  Used to go out of my way to ensure variable declarations were columnized by access mode, type, name, equals sign and initial value.

final BufferedImage mapImg = MapImageFactory.newInstance(width, height);
final int           count  = ad.getPosition() * 2;

mapImg.composite(adImg, 25               , (this.adHeight + 20) * count + 20, Over);
mapImg.composite(adTxt, 25 + this.adWidth, (this.adHeight + 20) * count + 20, Over);

The Tabularizer plugin for vim was a boon for productivity.  Well, mine.  For everyone else, it meant either destroying the pre-formatted beauty or re-aligning all the columns.

Anyway, it's considered bad practice, so I've tried to get away from it-- at least when writing shared code.  I still like perfect tabular output in my day-to-day.  Take the df command, for example.  It's default "human readable sizes" output:

2016-02-05 11:03:57 «««« ~
 rons@rons-VM$ df -h
Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
                       59G   29G   27G  52% /
/dev/sda1              99M   33M   61M  36% /boot
tmpfs                 1.5G     0  1.5G   0% /dev/shm

Bleah. A line break. Why you mess my rows, GNU? An easy fix jumped into my noggin the other day and crept down my arms and out my fingertips:

2016-02-05 11:03:58 «««« ~
 rons@rons-VM$ df -h | sed 's/Mounted on$/Mount/;' | xargs printf '%-40.40s %8s %8s %8s %5s  %s\n'
Filesystem                                   Size     Used    Avail  Use%  Mount
/dev/mapper/VolGroup00-LogVol00               59G      29G      27G   52%  /
/dev/sda1                                     99M      33M      61M   36%  /boot
tmpfs                                        1.5G        0     1.5G    0%  /dev/shm

The trick is that a printf format with a trailing newline will repeat if it runs out of input tokens.   That's why I had to truncate the "Mounted on" to just "Mount" above-- otherwise there would be an irregular number of columns (and thus printf tokens) on each line/row.  Spaces in filesystems and mounts will mess it up, too, but if you use spaces in the names of your mounts, you deserve the dissonance.

Edit: Better shell function replacement below.

unset -f df ; function df() {
  command df -P $@ | perl -ane '
    push(@rows, [@F]);
    for (0..$#F) {
      $ll = length($F[$_]); $cm[$_] = $ll if $ll > ($cm[$_] // 0);
    END { printf("%-$cm[0]s %$cm[1]s %$cm[2]s %$cm[3]s %$cm[4]s %s\n", @{$_})
      for @rows; }';
} ;


Uses the -P flag for POSIX one-line-per-mount format.   Dynamically calculates column widths.


Tagged as: , No Comments

Why 80 characters?

Posted by Quinn

Searching for reasonable values for the *.vt100.geometry[5-6] xterm menu font-menu options in my ~/.Xdefaults file, I re-stumbled a gem of computing history as the top-answer to a question on StackOverflow, and this pretty picture of an old IBM punch-card.

Inspired by a perl script within the comments, I ran this shell pipe:

2015-07-23 10:30:00 :: ~
 rons@rons-VM$ find /usr/share/terminfo/ -type f -printf '%f\n' |
   xargs -n1 infocmp | egrep -o 'cols#[0-9]+, *lines#[0-9]+' |
   sort | uniq -c | sort -nr | head
 489  cols#80,  lines#24
 58   cols#132, lines#24
 55   cols#80,  lines#25
 27   cols#80,  lines#34
 15   cols#80,  lines#40
 15   cols#80,  lines#31
 14   cols#80,  lines#33
 12   cols#126, lines#24
 10   cols#85,  lines#64
 8    cols#80,  lines#42

Unsure if infocmp normalizes its output such that the cols and lines entries will always be adjoined, but this is good enough for my purposes.

80x24 wins by a landslide, with 132x24 a distant second.   Then I found a Gnome help page which added 80x43 and 132x43 as options for its gooey{sic} terminal.  Next, a quick stop at the SVGA documentation in the Linux kernel with another list of common geometries.

Finally, the Wikipedia Text Mode entry which included a neat table of common text modes:

Text res. Char. size Graphics res. Colors Adapters
80×25 9×14 720×350 B&W MDA, Hercules
40×25 8×8 320×200 16 CGA, EGA
80×25 8×8 640×200 16 CGA, EGA
80×25 8×14 640×350 16 EGA
80×43 8×8 640×350 16 EGA
80×25 9×16 720×400 16 VGA
80×30 8×16 640×480 16 VGA
80×50 9×8 720×400 16 VGA
80×60 16 VESA-compatible SVGA
132×25 16 VESA-compatible SVGA
132×43 16 VESA-compatible SVGA
132×50 16 VESA-compatible SVGA
132×60 16 VESA-compatible SVGA

I think I'll go with 80x50 and 132x60.