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Messages - Jason Wallwork

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As Bill's links show, it works on the principle of an encrypted volume. When you create an encrypted volume it looks like just a file to the OS until you mount it. Mounting it basically decrypts it and you see it as a if you plugged in an external drive. Then when you unmount it, it's re-encrypted and becomes just a file again. So just keep that file in your dropbox folder.

I did a presentation on Veracrypt once at a meeting but not sure if you were there.

Meetings / Re: PLUG Mug June 18 or later
« on: Today at 03:22:25 am »
Surprisingly, there was no city meetings this Monday or next Monday so we can do Monday if you guys want.

This is a dated article (2011) but it covers some concerns about how secure Dropbox is.

Since Dropbox is based in the US, I would not consider Dropbox to be secure from the pryng eyes of the US government.

If I was wanting to store any sensitive files on Dropbox, I would perhaps look at using Truecrypt to store a Truecrypt drive/Folder in my Dropbox Folder.

I concur except I'd suggest using Veracrypt now. As far as I know, Truecrypt is no longer being updated and even the creator of the software recommended people not use it because of some major security flaws he discovered. But the code was open and programmers worked on it and found and addressed security flaws and forked a new project called Veracrypt.

Not likely in your case if I understand your usage. But make no mistake, there are applications where even 16 GB of RAM may not be enough, and when I use applications here, I don't mean software applications, I just mean certain uses.

Meetings / Re: PLUG Mug June 18 or later
« on: Yesterday at 09:09:39 am »
That's ok with me unless you want to get together anyway. I think Mike told me that he is leaving next Thursday for a canoe trip so we'll have to make it before then.

I seem to remember Bob Foley saying that internally hosted solutions are the best, as long as you aren't allowing access to files outside the home.

Best in what way? If he meant more secure, which is probably where he was going with that, then yes, but if you're not accessing files outside the home then you won't have the same features that Dropbox offers so it doesn't really matter unless you're willing to give that up.

Having 10-20 GB of dedicated space on a home computer would be no problem for me, but is that really a better, more secure solution than Dropbox?

I think it's more about how well you trust Dropbox. We already know that Dropbox employees have access to viewing user files although you can use encryption to deal with that like Bill does. So in that way, a self-hosted solution is definitely more secure in that you're the only person who can ever view your data. But if you're not concerned about that, it probably doesn't matter. Note that if you host yourself you will responsible entirely for the security of your data which really just means you need to be quick about installing updates for the hosting software and have an excellent password.

And that's the crux of it, I think. Dropbox makes it more convenient than setting up a self-hosting service. Self-hosting means keeping the software and OS (if it's separate) updated and configuring your router to access. While using dropbox, the data relies on the company to keep it safe, not just from hackers but their own employees. That's why I suggest, unless the files you share aren't really private, that you encrypt that data and decrypt it on each machine you use it on.

So I think what you use probably depends on your level of trust (i.e. paranoia) of Dropbox and how much work you're willing to put into it. Personally, I think using Dropbox is fine, especially with encryption for sensitive documents.


I'm surprised that Kubuntu uses even less RAM than Ubuntu MATE. As to if lower RAM usage means a more responsive system, that's hard to say. My gut feeling is that unless you're using over 75% of available RAM, probably not. If you're using programs that consume a lot of RAM then having more RAM available will help with the response time of the OS overall if it puts you over that (image editing, video editing, 3D work, maybe heavy scientific apps).

However, it should affect load-time since all that data has to be read off off the hard drive to put in RAM so you get to a desktop. I don't know how much of the desktop RAM that is used is dynamically-used. If a good portion of it is, then that would mean that the CPU has to re-cache it for updating things so larger desktop memory use could result in slower response though I'm not sure how noticable it would be since RAM is so fast (in human terms).

Meetings / Re: PLUG Mug June 18 or later
« on: June 17, 2018, 12:54:14 am »
Great. Anybody else interested?

Meetings / Re: PLUG Mug June 18 or later
« on: June 16, 2018, 08:55:25 am »
I can do Wednesday evening at 7 pm. Did you want to try Whistlestop again for a change of venue? Otherwise, Timmy's would be fine.

General Discussion / Re: Cogeco customer service is horrific
« on: June 14, 2018, 04:03:35 pm »
Hey dougal,

Did you have to go without Internet service for any amount of time or was the 'disconnect' basically Cogeco removing you from their billing system but leaving the Internet service intact for Start? I was wondering if you had any downtime and if Bill will. Of course, I'm already on Start but I have been considering trying out Carrytel and thinking it's probably the same process.

Articles, Tutorials and Tips / Re: Adventures with the Linux kernel
« on: June 14, 2018, 03:51:34 pm »
Ohhhh. That makes sense.

Btw, I did put Linux Mint 19 Cinnamon beta on my laptop and did the steps to install KDE on it. It works to login but I haven't had to time to do more with it to make sure it actually works decently. I'll start a new topic and report back whether it works or not.

Articles, Tutorials and Tips / Re: Adventures with the Linux kernel
« on: June 13, 2018, 11:40:40 pm »
Update: 4.15 is indeed viewable; it just didn't come up automatically in the software updater like 4.13 did. I hadn't looked before under View -> Linux Kernels. Interestingly enough, once I installed 4.15.0-15 on that other partition, Update Manager showed me that the 4.15.0-23 update was available without having to go through the View -> Linux Kernels.

Of course it would, it literally is an update to 4.15.0, that's why it has the -23 on the end. Remember that Linux Mint is a LTS distro (unless you use LMDE), so it doesn't actually upgrade things like kernels. It just updates the kernel version you have, that is, until you upgrade to a newer version of LM.

Now that I know this, I'm debating whether to uninstall the 4.15 kernel altogether so that when Mint 19 is released, I can try upgrading in that extra partition to make sure it works before doing so in my main partition. I am potentially concerned that leaving the 4.15 kernel in 18.3 might cause the upgrade to behave differently than it would with the 4.8 kernel installed in my main partition. Do you think I have to worry about this, Jason?

I doubt you will have to worry about but you can certainly revert if you wish. I would imagine that the LM upgrade can handle this. It should just notice that you already have newer a kernel and just leave it alone. You can always do a Timeshift backup before you do the upgrade so if anything goes wrong, you can revert back to before the upgrade.

However, I find it puzzling that you have 4.8 series kernel because I installed Linux Mint 18.3 freshly to get the KDE version a month ago, I guess now, and I don't recall ever upgrading to a new series. so I think it came with the 4.13 series. Perhaps that is just with the KDE version though. Really not sure. And it's possible I installed a newer kernel series with Update Manager -> View -> Kernels and just forgot :-)

General Discussion / Re: Cogeco customer service is horrific
« on: June 13, 2018, 11:29:33 pm »
Geez. Sounds really frustrating. Their customer service department must be really broken today. Hope you have better luck tomorrow.

Articles, Tutorials and Tips / Re: Adventures with the Linux kernel
« on: June 12, 2018, 08:38:07 pm »
You're saying that the Update Manager offered you 4.15.0-23?

Yes. When you click on the View -> Linux Kernels, 4.15 series kernels are in there. I'm still using the default 4.13 series though.

I did a kernel update recently and noticed that it did upgrade 4 packages one of which was linux-image-extra, so yeah, looks like it's included. But if you use a method outside of UM then you'll have to include it yourself.

Articles, Tutorials and Tips / Re: Adventures with the Linux kernel
« on: June 12, 2018, 02:46:36 am »
Maybe the available kernels in the Update Manager was really itself updated? Because I just checked and I can get 4.15 release kernels there (latest is But the tip about the package linux-image-extra is interesting. I wonder if that would have been included if it has been installed using UM?

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