Random Musings

An occasional blog

Please use code tags

When you ask for help on a forum, it can be helpful to include the output of the computer’s response to what you’re doing. Copying and pasting of terminal output often works better than including a screenshot. On a system running Ubuntu, highlighting the text you wish to copy, using Ctrl+c to copy the text from the terminal output, and using Ctrl+v to paste it into your forum post will normally work. Please remember to have[CODE] at the start, and [/CODE] at the end. This does not necessarily mean that you are posting “code” or “codes” – it’s a preference that seasoned forum users have, as it usually preserves formatting better than using [QUOTE] and [/QUOTE]. Remember to disguise email and IP addresses.

Duplicate posts

From time to time, Ubuntu Forums gets rather busy, and it seems like it’s not actually saving posts. Please be patient. and check that your post has actually taken before clicking on the “Submit Post” button a second time – use a new browser window if necessary. You can check which of your posts are visible by clicking on the Quick Links drop-down menu, then clicking on “Find all my posts.”

Command line and code.

I’m old school and believe that what you type in at the command prompt isn’t necessarily a code, but is nearly always consists of one or more commands (which is why the command line, sometimes referred to as “terminal”, is called the command line). It might seem like some kind of secret code to someone who doesn’t understand what it does, but the intent is to command the computer to do something. What I type might sometimes include codes, but it’s still a command. I might enclose it in “code tags” when sharing it on a forum, but that has more to do with formatting than what it is.

Religious references

The forums in which I participate include representatives of a variety of communities of faith. It is extremely easy to get into pointless arguments about finer points of doctrine that contribute nothing to the support requests that form the backbone of what the forum is there for. It is also very easy to cause offence.

If you must stand by what you believe, it’s a good idea to be sensitive to any rules that those who run the forum have put in place, otherwise you run the risk of being banned. It might be necessary to quietly take your thoughts to an alternative venue for discussion. If you identify as “Christian” you might well  to apply the principle underlying Romans 13:1 – in short, work within the rules, and not contrary to them.

Spam Magnets

It’s often recommended that you don’t leave your email address visible in forum posts. This is because search engines and data mining spiders regularly look at posted information. You can never be sure if one of the spiders has passed your email address on to spambots – until you get bombarded with unwanted emails.

Ubuntu Forums

  • The mods and admins at Ubuntu Forums are all volunteers. They do not own the forum or have access to the hardware. Canonical owns the hardware and relevant infrastructure.
  • If you have a beef with the actions of one of the forum staff, feel free to politely state your case in a thread in the Resolution Centre.
  • If you are experiencing problems using the forum, the place to visit is Forum Feedback and Help.
  • To alert the forum staff to a post that you think needs their attention, use the “Report Post” button.
  • Avoid making support requests via Private Messages.
  • The forum has a set of rules, to which you will need to agree before signing up.

Er, what?

I forgot that I had this blog. Ooops!


My thoughts go out to the people of Christchurch. I wish to encourage people to help where they can.


Email woes

My email system has a more sophisticated set of spam filtering than that used by the typical home user. Because of this, I’ve set up an information page designed to help people figure out what went wrong if their email to me bounced back as undeliverable. For more information, visit http://lisati.homelinux.com/postmaster

Update, 11 August 2016: I no longer have that domain, so forget it!

Ah here we are!

Should’ve thought of this first, my home server is a bit slow at times!