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control panel | bonuses | spam | virtual
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status: control panel | bonuses | spam | virtual<

Sun Jul 9 19:26:49 EDT 2006

 VIRTUAL SERVERS (too much obedience)
 SLEEP (related issues: frogs)
 John has the secondary LDAP server up and running, for more details see 
 his blog [1]
 After a month of research Manny has recommended we go with ispman [2] I 
 accepted his recommendation.
 The selection process, was: list all software libre control panels [3], 
 narrow the list to the ones supporting an ldap backend and then pick the 
 one with the best documentation and multiple server support.
 When John finishes upgrading SpamAssassin, he and Manny will get the 
 control panel going. For now Manny is working on a bunch of small well 
 defined projects.
 The board discussed paying some of our small surplus as cash bonuses.[4] 
 The discussion didn't go as I wanted. In the short term this is 
 annoying. Longer term it is good to have a real check on my power and 
 some authority to rebel against. Medium term, yeah, some good points 
 were made.
 Over-simplifying the clear and relatively short discussion, the board 
 had some or all of these opinions. (a) We should ask cadre what 
 motivated them, instead of assuming cash. (b) competition was bad. (c) 
 Money is for rainy days, not bonuses.
 Getting our mail delivered is becoming more of a problem.
 In recent weeks, we spent a few days getting off Verizon's black list,
 Right now, we're trying to get off the black list maintained by the 
 Lowell Sun's anti-spam vendor.
 A general problem is that everyone is  more willing to napalm bystanders 
 to kill spam. The source of our particular problems is probably the fact 
 that at least one of our users considered his message more important 
 than the danger of getting everyone blacklisted.
 People have a tendency to drag a message into their SPAM folder instead 
 of telling somebody that they don't want the email. As a result we get 
 Beyond manual, wack-a-hole de-blacklisting, We don't have firm plans to 
 fix this problem.
 Some possibilities include SPF [5], modifying mailman to not allow 
 people to add entries to their lists without confirmation, and replacing 
 mailman with something that allows one-click unsubscribe.
 At the same time, SPAM to our users is increasing.
 An obvious strategy is to upgrade SpamAssassin from 3.0 to 3.1 which has
 sa-update [6] for automatic upgrades of spam signatures.
 John's spent a big but distracted chuck of the past 3 weeks trying to 
 get a working duplicate of the main mail server setup so as to safely 
 test the upgrade. --Obviously this points to a potential disaster 
 recovery problem.
 The current plan is to look carefully at the differences between 3.0 and 
 3.1, checklist the upgrade and rollback if there are problems.
 VIRTUAL SERVERS (too much obedience)
 Matt's sick truck has required his attention. Between the truck and the 
 holiday, he's not logged as many hours as in past weeks. Progress is 
 merely solid this week.
 Rob should have some hardware recommendations for the new server soon.
 One mistake I made was to idly suggest looking at User Mode Linux [7], 
 with the vague thought that we might someday run per domain virtual 
 servers. A disadvantage of xen is that if you have 10 servers running 10 
 copies of apache, each copy takes memory.
 Rob & Matt plunged into testing UML which is a bit of a surprise since 
 people usually ignore my whims. After some conversation and 
 documentation checking, We (Matt) figured that UML didn't have a lower 
 memory footprint and got back to work check-list-ifying xen.
 SLEEP (related issues:frogs)
 Every is back to more or less sleeping at night and working in the day.
 Some sort of flu has cut into John's sleep, Friday he was heading out to 
 the Lowell walk-in.
 I've continued to improve my score at getting to sleep at a reasonable 
 hour, when the weekend hit, I spent only a few extra hours catching up.
 Manny's getting an appointment to have his sleep monitored overnight. 
 His deviated septum is probably treatable without surgery.
 As the sleep situation improves, a lot of other efficencies become 
 Sitting at the computer  and reading fiction at night keep me awake past 
 bed-time, so I've been reading non-fiction.
 Last week I spent a bit more than an hour on the book: "Eat that 
 frog"[8], as the outline [9] suggests. It's hard to say how much the 
 book has helped me in a week, but there problably is something to the 
 idea that you should do your most important chore first.