a very challenging question?

Tim Chase blinux.list at thechases.com
Sun Dec 28 22:28:32 UTC 2014

On December 26, 2014, Karen Lewellen wrote:
> Now, the *only* real disadvantage to shellworld is not being able
> to directly access, as in follow a link to and reach, media
> presentation content.

If your DOS SSH/SFTP package also came with an "scp" ("secure copy")
command, and you have enough disk-space in your shellworld account
(it doesn't sound like that would be an issue), you can download the
media on the shellworld box and then copy it back to your box with
something like

 scp karen at shellworld.net:/home/karen/my_file.mp3 c:\mp3s\

for local playback.  That assumes you have an appropriate media
player on your local machine.

> That is the only  function another open source box can present,
> assuming that my ssh tellneting to it would not present the same
> barrier.

Well, you'd be able to download it to your Linux/BSD box and then use
the playback functionalities to listen to the media there.  You'd
just have to plug your headphones/stereo into the Linux/BSD computer.

> > - security of keeping your data locally rather than entrusting it
> > to some other 3rd party
> Are you kidding?
> Shellworld does backups nightly, and I have lost data here once in
> over a decade.

Security is not just backups but also the ability for others to read
your email and monitor your communications.  I don't know
shellworld's admins and they could be fine upstanding people with a
strong moral code.  Or they could be sneaky jerks that read
everyone's email and eventually end up blackmailing you.  As
mentioned, I have my email and website hosted with a service provider
so clearly I'm not overly paranoid on this.  If I want to keep prying
eyes from seeing things, I just encrypt my communications before they
leave my local machine.

> Still the modem /rooter combination sitting on my desk solves the
> problem of any other items needing to connect.

Okay, if it really is a router, the Linux box should work just fine.

> the  automatic assumption that you *must* build an entirely new
> house, there way, even if you just have a spot in your carpet.

Bah, yes there are some who go that route and want everything new. But
on this end of the email, you've got someone who has been nursing
along several boxes for over a decade and they are still serviceable
(no longer my main machines, but they work in a pinch).  Bring on the
duct-tape (or the Resolve if you want to maintain the carpet analogy).

> This is not a remote project, networking must be done in person
> first.

If you've got the fortitude to keep trying, I'm game to keep trying
even though I can't get my hands on the machine.  If you want to
surrender, feel free to shrug and stop reading now.  If however you
want to keep trying, I've dumped a couple more ideas below to see if
we can get closer to a useful solution.

Presuming that your router is like most home routers, it should be
pretty safe to assume that it hands out IP addresses via DHCP.  And
most Linux installations default to trying DHCP when the networking
comes up. So my next curiosity would be to try and find out if the
Linux box is connected to the network, but at some unknown address
(which you'd need to know in order to SSH into it).

If you can get some eyeballs on the Linux box and have them run the
following command, it might help diagnose what's going on.  First,
find out what the IP address of the box is.

  /sbin/ifconfig eth0

which should contain a line that reads "inet addr" which is likely
192.168.X.Y where X is usually some small number such as 0 or 1, and
Y is a number greater than 1 and less than 255.  For example's sake,
I'll pretend that gives you "".  If the "ifconfig"
doesn't return an IP address then something was seriously
misconfigured when the Linux box was set up, or there's some sort of
hardware failure. If it does successfully have an IP address, that's
what you'd want to ssh from your DOS machine.

The second thing to have eyeballs check is if the SSH daemon is
running. This can be checked on the Linux machine by issuing

  ps ax | grep ssh[d]

If this returns any results (usually a line containing
"/usr/sbin/sshd"), then the SSH daemon should be running and you
should be able to connect to it. If it got an address and "sshd"
isn't running, then it would need to be installed:

  sudo apt-get install openssh-server

Assuming the Linux box was set up to give you a user-name of "karen",
you should be able to use

  ssh karen at

to connect.

Let me know how far any of that gets you (smiles)


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