Category Archives: utilities

Making screencasts with Linux

After my post about capturing full page screenshots with firefox I started wondering if there was a way to do screencasts using Linux. It just so happens that you can. There are a couple different options if you want a pure movie of your desktop but I was more interested in a flash version. I found what I was looking for with this tutorial on how to record videos of your desktop that uses vnc2swf.

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5 ImageMagick command line examples – part 1

If you have ever wanted to manipulate images under linux you probably have used Gimp. This isn't your only option and if you want to do things from the command line a better option is to use ImageMagick's convert utility.

I've put together 5 simple command line examples that I have found useful. This is just a sample of what you can do with convert. To see more examples and get more explanation of options see: ImageMagick v6 Examples.

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Tape drives are obsolete

I was reading an article today that asks the question Are Tape Backup systems obsolete? I would say the answer is yes and that it has been that way for some time now.

Take google who build thier own commodity hardware. How would they ever back up so much data? Why would they even try? It would be much easier to just do what they are doing and replicate the data multiple places. Drives are becoming so huge how can you manage to keep up with your tape library solution? What if you had to back up the Sun Thumper at 24T? That would require a massive number of tapes.

We tried to use tapes for the longest time but the expense got to be too much. We were adding hardware left and right with drives that could fill an entire tape. After looking at autoloaders to cover the amount of data our graphics developers produce we gave up on tapes. That was two years ago. We went with Amanda's tapeless setup and a load of cheap hard drives that we could swap out for offsite backups. This setup has worked great. The cheap drives let us to expand our backup range from a couple weeks to month and longer if we wanted to. Having the extra space gave us the ability to back up user pcs if we needed to as well. As the size of drives for servers we buy increases so does are ability to expand our backup system. Moving to a hard drive based backup scheme has releaved us of the burden of waiting for tapes to catch up which they never seem to do.

backup, amanda, tape

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Capture full page screenshots with firefox

Ever wanted to capture the entire page you are viewing in firefox instead of just what is shown on your screen? Ever need to do that from a command line? Here are two extensions that let you do just that.

Page Saver

The first extension is called Page Saver and comes in two versions. The pro version you have to pay for but the free version does a good job all by itself. Here is an example of a fullpage screenshot:

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