[OT] Hosed Xubuntu system

Mike Bonner bonnmike at gmail.com
Tue Nov 29 00:01:41 CET 2016


My english skills are degrading at a high rate of speed apparently.  Fixes:
 "set it up clean and up to date"  and "at the end of each day, multicast
the clean image to all computers to prep for the next day"

On Mon, Nov 28, 2016 at 3:59 PM, Mike Bonner <bonnmike at gmail.com> wrote:

> If you have a spare machine and a large drive to store images, you might
> look at FOG.  When I was working at the local computer lab it was very
> helpful since people can be..shall we say, destructive.  We had a couple
> groups of machines, and would use one as master.  Set it up clean and up to
> day, use fog to do an image backup, then multi cast (pxe boot) to all the
> matching machines.  At the end of each day, do a multicast to imaging to
> each machine to prep for the next day.  On maintenance day, load the master
> machine, do its updates, refresh the image to the fog server and then push
> the new image out to the rest of the machines.
>
> Even if you just use it to cache image backups for multiple individual
> machines, it works very well. And I think it has greatly improved since I
> last used it.  Its a great way to manage things. In fact, if you are about
> to do a version upgrade to a machine, its pretty easy to back up the
> current, do the update and if things don't go as expected, roll back to a
> previous version.  (in case you haven't noticed, I really like the way fog
> works)
> Too late to help now, but for future safety you can read up on it here:
> https://fogproject.org/
>
> On Mon, Nov 28, 2016 at 8:30 AM, Richard Gaskin <
> ambassador at fourthworld.com> wrote:
>
>> Richmond Mathewson wrote:
>>
>> > I was unaware that there was malware for Linux :(
>>
>> Everything is hackable.
>>
>>
>> > I turned on my Xubuntu system this morning and found *nothing*,
>> >
>> > so I started the machine up from a GParted boot disk and found that
>> > not only had my boot disk been deleted, all the files on my other 2
>> > hard drives had vanished
>> >
>> > and were not recoverable by GParted.
>> >
>> > I would be most grateful for any advice in this respect.
>>
>> This may or may not be malware.
>>
>> A more common attack would encrypt your files and demand bitcoin ransom.
>> Merely deleting the files means an attacker would be working with no
>> benefit to themselves; not impossible, but with so many more lucrative
>> opportunities it seems unlikely.
>>
>> It may just be some sort of glitch (though it does seem an odd one).
>>
>> To get some help diagnosing and possibly repairing the situation, I would
>> recommend taking advantage of the Ubuntu forums, where they have a section
>> for general help with derivative flavors like Xubuntu here:
>>
>> <https://ubuntuforums.org/forumdisplay.php?f=331>
>>
>>
>> > I was naive enough to think that backing up data onto other hard
>> > drives within the same computer was safe.
>>
>> Better than no backup at all, but not without risks.
>>
>> With HDDs currently available for about US$50/TB I've become a big fan of
>> removable portable drives.
>>
>> I've collected quite a few, used in rotation with each containing the
>> last set of files from the day before.
>>
>> I use my secondary internal drive for incremental backups made with the
>> backup utility included with Ubuntu, so I can restore any given file to any
>> version over the last several months.
>>
>> And then I further hedge my bets with both a NextCloud setup which backs
>> up and versions my work files to my office server, and a second mirror
>> repository on my Mac which is also backed up to an attached drive via Time
>> Machine.
>>
>> Given that all software has bugs, and some will eventually make mash of a
>> backup, and that all hard drives will eventually fail, this
>> multiply-redundant setup helps mitigate those risks, using HDDs I'd
>> acquired over the years for various purposes so the redundancy has grown
>> over time.
>>
>> Of course manually managing these would be quite a time waster, so I
>> wrote a pair of bash scripts, one for my Linux box and one for my Mac,
>> which use rsync to automate the copying.  So now at the end of the day I
>> just run one script on my Linux box, then a second on my Mac, and when
>> they're done I have four local copies of everything (five for work files
>> thanks to the always-updating NextCloud) and one removable drive updated to
>> take home with the others for offsite protection.
>>
>> Back in the '90s I lost a big chunk of critical data in a hard drive
>> failure.  For me, taking a few minutes at the end of the day to run an
>> automated redundant backup helps me sleep better.
>>
>> --
>>  Richard Gaskin
>>  Fourth World Systems
>>  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
>>  ____________________________________________________________________
>>  Ambassador at FourthWorld.com                http://www.FourthWorld.com
>>
>>
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