Absolute FreeBSD now shipping!

Amazon can deliver and NSP has copies, so I think I can say: Absolute FreeBSD is now shipping!

Here’s the Obligatory Gratuitous New Book Selfie.

af3e selfie

Grab an ebook/print bundle direct from No Starch Press. NSP coupon code ILUVMICHAEL gives you 30% off any NSP purchase and puts a few extra bucks in my pocket, so that’s cool. And there’s Amazon. There’s always Amazon, the company we all love to loathe.

Or check the book page for links to other stores.

Happy #CIDRDay!

On 24 September 1993, the IETF published RFC 1519, designating Classless Interdomain Routing (CIDR) and variable length subnet masks as the standard. That particular document is obsoleted by later RFCs, but it’s still a milestone.

Before then, IP addresses were allocated by “classes.” Class A, B, and C addresses were the norm. I’m not going to explain classful addressing, because it’s long obsolete and, on the current Internet, stupid.

What I am going to do is go on a mini-tirade about classful addressing. Because there’s a lot of people out there still teaching classful addressing to newcomers. And then these poor newcomers hit the field, and people like me have to spend our time unteaching them what they so painfully learned.

I fully understand it takes a few years to disseminate knowledge. But textbooks are still being published that claim classful routing is the standard. This is an appalling disservice to the profession.

Yes, CIDR looks hard. But if a new network admin can’t handle CIDR and VLSM, they shouldn’t be administering networks. That’s perhaps the easiest math they’ll need to handle in their career. And the Internet is full of cheat sheets for people who don’t want to bother to do the math.

On this, the 25th anniversary of Classless Inter-Domain Routing, I hereby declare 24 September 1993 CIDRDay, dedicated to stamping out classful addressing. A whole variety of celebrations are appropriate.

First, of course: cider! Cider is obligatory on CIDRDay.

Second, whenever someone who should know better says “Class C,” “Class B,” or “Class A” address? Explain to them the error of their ways, with the minimum amount of force needed to make sure that they never say it again.

If you know someone who’s still teaching that garbage? Yell at them until they promise to stop. If yelling doesn’t work, escalate.

Because frankly, I’m tired of reeducating innocent newcomers who should have been better served by their instructors.

talking on CreateSpace-KDP print Migration, 24 September 2018

The subject pretty much says it all, but:

On 24 September, at 7 PM, I’ll be talking about migrating books from CreateSpace to KDP Print, including procedural, technical, and business aspects thereof, at the Grey Wolfe Scriptorium. “Talk” is a strong word here; we’ll have a couple remarks and then a back and forth discussion.

It’s a public event.

I won’t say I know everything there is on this topic, but I’ve been following it closely. The hard parts of my migration are done, and I should be ninety percent finished by then. We all know that’ll leave me with only ninety percent of the work left to do.

New podcast interview

Apparently August 2018 is Shamelessly Shill Yourself Month. I appeared on the IT in the D podcast last week. A fun time was had by all–well, at least by me. And that’s the important thing, right? We talked about my books, decades of IT, SSH, ed, and general nerdery.

I worked with Dave and Bob almost twenty years ago. Somehow they’d forgot just how painful it was to work with me and invited me on the show. And if you think I’m being self-deprecating there: the Michael Lucas Oversight Committee was an integral part of the company. Some of you require managerial oversight: I need a freaking team.

Really, it’s best I’m self-employed. I’m clearly not fit for civilized company.

Meanwhile, Bob and Dave went on to try to improve things for technology folks in Detroit. It’s like they’re better human beings than I am or something.

Burn it down! Burn it all down!

I burned yesterday and redesigned my web sites. What was www.michaelwlucas.com, blather.michaelwlucas.com, www.michaelwarrenlucas.com, and mwl.io have been consolidated in a single site, mwl.io. Fiction, nonfiction, FAQ, and blog, all coexisting as one happy family.

Happy families are the ones most likely to stab each other in their sleep. But anyway.

I have a whole slew of redirects on the old sites, so my incoming links should work. My Tiny RSS reader even caught my test post, so I’m pretty sure blog subscribers will continue to get my posts.

Spending a couple days working on this mess wasn’t fun but maintaining four sites, the correlated interdependencies, and all the trivial little difference was eating up too much time. I’ll make back this time in a year. I also took the chance to fine-tune my web server’s TLS configuration, as 2012’s iffy algorithms are downright dubious today.

Also, I’d like to thank Let’s Encrypt for making TLS everywhere a reality. This integration would never have happened without an infinite supply of web site certificates. If you’re not using them, you should.

“PAM Mastery” print sponsor books

I have the first official batch of PAM Mastery print copies. Here’s the stack ready for the sponsors.


Why is one box bigger than the others? One sponsor, who shall remain nameless but let’s call him SJ, sponsored the book several times over. Sending him more than one book seems like the right thing to do. Even if he doesn’t enjoy the books or their topics, they make great table levelers and spider smashers.

New novel in print and ebook: Butterfly Stomp Waltz

Some of you have seen this on the mailing list, others on social media. I announce ebook availability to the mailing list and then on social media. Once a fiction book hits print and Amazon ties the two formats together, I blog it.

My new crime thriller novel, Butterfly Stomp Waltz, is out. It’s a modern crime thriller with guns and explosions and heists and all that fun stuff.

I got a message earlier today from a random reader.

So I bought your book and it’s SO GREAT! I’m hardly into it and am considering faking sick for the rest of the afternoon so that I can keep reading.

I’m still waiting for the butterfly stomping part. I hope it’s monarchs. Cocky bastards. Always flapping around and landing on flowers like they’re soooooo much better than everyone else.

Yet another life goal for me: a review that says “I used a sick day to read this book.”

“FreeBSD Mastery: Advanced ZFS” Table of Contents

I’ve gotten a few potential sponsors asking what Allan and I intend to put in the Advanced ZFS book. Here’s a tentative Table of Contents.

We may split, remix, slice, dice, fold, spindle, and mutilate this in the coming weeks.

0: Introduction
1: Boot Environments
2: Delegation and Jails
3: Sharing
4: Replication
5: zvols
6: Advanced Hardware
7: Caches
8: Performance
9: Tuning
10: ZFS Potpourri

I’m also looking for classic art to parody for the cover. Ideally, I’d like something where I could do another wraparound cover, as I had on FreeBSD Mastery: Specialty Filesystems. I’m very open to suggestions, which is a nice way of saying “I have no clue whatsoever.”