Add Support To Your Firefox For Torrent Files Magnet Links

I found it tedious to add magnet links manually to my torrent client, Transmission. By manually, I mean I right click on the magnet link icon on the torrent web site and copy the link to memory. Then I open Transmission and type CNTRL+U, then ENTER,twice. When I click that magnet link I want firefox to be able to transfer control to another application which can handle the type of file I’m clicking.

I found a solution in the Mozilla forums, thanks.

Open a new tab in firefox. Then go to about:config. Be careful when you’re editing your firefox config. In the search bar type handler.expose. Right click anywhere in the window and choose New–>>Boolean. In the new window popup, type Network.protocol-handler.expose.magnet. Then close the tab.

You should be able to click (normally) on the magnet link of that torrent web site and firefox will transfer control to your default torrent client. Otherwise a popup will prompt you to fill in your preferred torrent client.


Firefox Update 57.0.3.x –>> 57.0.4-1

~]$ sudo pacman -Syu
[sudo] password for USER:
:: Synchronizing package databases…
core is up to date
extra 1639.0 KiB 144K/s 00:11 [#####################################] 100%
community 4.2 MiB 115K/s 00:37 [#####################################] 100%
DEB_Arch_Extra 1994.0 B 0.00B/s 00:00 [#####################################] 100%
DEB_Arch_Extra.sig 280.0 B 0.00B/s 00:00 [#####################################] 100%
:: Starting full system upgrade…
resolving dependencies…
looking for conflicting packages…

Packages (4) firefox-57.0.4-1 python-setuptools-1:38.4.0-1 subversion-1.9.7-4 whois-5.2.20-1

Updates for firefox 57.0.3 to 57.0.4-1 includes patches for mitigating Meltdown and Spectre. While operating system vendors are pushing patches for their users it isn’t clear how much is enough to stop the exploits. Some say this problem with kernel memory leaks due to aggressive processor action will continue until a firmware update or if the user just buys another non-Intel processor. Researchers say that most AMD processors are immune to the exploits. ARM and Raspberry processors are immune to the exploits too. It is also clear now that these patches will have performance hits especially with virtual machines, meaning those being used in cloud services.

Tech Joke..

What is 2 + 2 ?

Intel: 5

AMD: 4

Intel: Ok he’s right but we were first.

Edit: It has been 4 days since I post this. All the major chip vendors are affected. I repeat, all major chip vendors are affected. The performance hit from the patches will be the greatest on VM because users share the CPU.

Massive Vulnerability Resulting In Meltdown and Specter Attacks

I planned to update Arch every 10 days but since updating some 3 days ago, news of a massive vulnerability in the chip processor all computers use came out. There are two demonstrated attacks called Meltdown and Specter. So let me use the language of the OpenSuse security patch email here to explain what these are.

CVE-2017-5753 / “SpecŧreAttack”: Local attackers on systems with modern

CPUs featuring deep instruction pipelining could use attacker
controllable speculative execution over code patterns in the Linux
Kernel to leak content from otherwise not readable memory in the same
address space, allowing retrieval of passwords, cryptographic keys and
other secrets.

This problem is mitigated by adding speculative fencing on affected code
paths throughout the Linux kernel.

– CVE-2017-5715 / “SpectreAttack”: Local attackers on systems with modern
CPUs featuring branch prediction could use mispredicted branches to
speculatively execute code patterns that in turn could be made to leak
other non-readable content in the same address space, an attack similar
to CVE-2017-5753.

This problem is mitigated by disabling predictive branches, depending
on CPU architecture either by firmware updates and/or fixes in the
user-kernel privilege boundaries.

Please also check with your CPU / Hardware vendor on updated firmware
or BIOS images regarding this issue.

As this feature can have a performance impact, it can be disabled using
the “nospec” kernel commandline option.

– CVE-2017-5754 / “MeltdownAttack”: Local attackers on systems with modern
CPUs featuring deep instruction pipelining could use code patterns in
userspace to speculative executive code that would read
otherwise read protected memory, an attack similar to CVE-2017-5753.

This problem is mitigated by unmapping the Linux Kernel from the user
address space during user code execution, following a approach called
“KAISER”. The terms used here are “KAISER” / “Kernel Address Isolation”
and “PTI” / “Page Table Isolation”.

Note that this is only done on affected platforms.

This feature can be enabled / disabled by the “pti=[on|off|auto]” or
“nopti” commandline options.

Linux distros have pushed patches so I’m doing an update today. I’m updating my mirrors first with.

$ reflector –latest 8 –protocol https –sort rate –save /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist

Then I update my system with —

$ pacman -Syu

I should be receiving the same patch that OpenSuse pushed to their users.


It is important to encrypt your dns traffic. That’s the queries from your computer to a dns server. My dns resolv.conf contains:


I went ahead and installed dnscrypt-proxy package from the official repository. To check files for dnscrypt-proxy type this in the terminal. $ sudo pacman -Ql dnscrypt-proxy. It will be /etc/dnscrypt-proxy.conf. The config file for dnscrypt is explicit and looks like this essentially:

ResolverName random

You can change “random” to a specific dnscrypt-proxy name from /usr/share/dnscrypt-proxy/dnscrypt-resolvers.csv. I recommend this because I encounter a “unable to read” error in the logs when I try it the “random” way. Use chattr +i “path-to-file” to set the property of the file to read-only. NetworkManager will try to modify /etc/resolv.conf. Modify this file to:


Use dig to check the status of your dns server.

# dig

Enable and start dnscrypt-proxy service in systemd.

Check the logs in Arch with:

$ sudo journalctl | grep dnscrypt-proxy

SMTP Is Now Working With S-nail (Simple Sendmail)

The new Arch install needs to be able to send email to an outside smtp server. Or use an outside smtp server like my google account. Arch has s-nail by default and could out of the box send mail within its own network. But what I’m talking about is using Google smtp to send mail. The configuration file for s-nail are /etc/mail.rc and ~/HOME/.mailrc.

I began my config file with these in it.

set smtp=smtp://email_addr:password-app ##colon separated values

I saved the text file in ~/.mailrc. Then do a test send mail with the -d flag on to see what’s happening wrong. It will tell you what’s being loaded and line by line call of the config file. This is how my config file looks now with my goals accomplished.

set smtp-use-starttls
set smtp=smtp://
set smtp-auth=login
set smtp-auth-user=USERNAME
set smtp-auth-password=<password-app>
set from=”USER_EMAIL_ADDR<hostname.domain>”

For Google Mail it is important that you use the app password for the 2-way authentication in the Google web site. For the hostname.domain you can use your name but I like to use my hostname.


lsblk: Mounted Directories In Arch Setup

[ ~]$ lsblk -o name,size,fstype,mountpoint,uuid
sda 2.7T
└─sda1 2.7T LVM2_member Ao59b9-Vkww-EoFz-M51N-HRn2-NNZB-y6vTZP
├─vol2-Musiclv 500G ext4 /home/donato/Music ac16a063-3c09-4141-b7b7-1a0138c3b59f
└─vol2-Videoslv 2T ext4 /home/donato/Videos 35b88f11-c23e-43f2-a569-7c0773a31097
sdb 223.6G
├─sdb1 550M vfat /boot 4124-C894
├─sdb2 30G ext2 / 766007c4-57be-4fdd-b183-16f99397e371
├─sdb3 17G swap [SWAP] 19e69f3b-33d3-4678-ab05-73b82da4e83a
└─sdb4 176G ext4 /home 1cae9f86-0d9f-47bf-8184-65afe28fe904
sdc 1.8T
└─sdc1 1.8T LVM2_member M1Cqew-otGb-uzbi-7t2E-lpEa-U1Op-F9zYM2
sdd 2.7T
└─sdd1 2.7T LVM2_member tP0ARR-H2cr-xC5i-K8HX-RMe9-1YWI-7dKH7s
├─vol2-Musicbackups 50G ext4 /backups/Musicbackups 335c1de3-3652-479f-96dc-1f2c001503bd
├─vol2-Videosbackups 100G ext4 /backups/Videosbackups 786f5aae-dc45-49d2-a1f6-ba0b3fc06b82
└─vol2-Evolutionbackups 10G ext4 /backups/Evolutionbackups fce36cf9-eb64-4c3a-a8d0-36fd7a0ea472
sde 1.8T
└─sde1 1.8T LVM2_member rH12Vh-nWmL-aoau-xQyE-XMWv-kgi1-MMw4Ji
sdf 931.5G
└─sdf1 931.5G LVM2_member pFWaeb-VugC-jn2P-9nrH-rybb-YdVL-xRoJGp

This is reference for when I have modify my setups. Hard to remember with all the lv’s I’ve created. It helps when you have a list or a visual map.

Arch Install: Post Post Install Considerations

Now that I have a graphical desktop with the full installation of GNOME, what else do I do to my arch to be able to accomplish my work. The first thing to check is make sure you’re not running as root. You should create a user account with lower priveleges and use it for everyday computing.

$ adduser <username>

$ passwd <username> ##give it a password; this is different from the root password

Now that you have a user account, you can use sudo when performing administrative tasks without going to root.

$ pacman -S sudo

$ visudo ##edit your sudoers file using visudo, add your username and give it proper priveleges

Check if you have a firewall. I installed ufw and enabled it.

$ sudo pacman -S ufw

$ sudo ufw enable & ufw status verbose & ufw default deny

I like to monitor my hard drives with SMART. I installed smartmontools. Check the configuration file in /etc/smartd.conf. List your block devices with lsblk.

$ lsblk

$ sudo pacman -S smartmontools

$ sudo vim /etc/smartd.conf ##proceed to edit the file to your case

You should have the habit of checking systemd and journalctl.

$ man systemcltl & systemctl –failed ##to list failed units

$ sudo journalctl

It’s (nearly) 2018 And I’m Installing Arch

I’ve been installing Arch linux since two days ago. After an update to the kernel in my old Arch, my gnome log me out. So instinctively I should have log in but I don’t know what, I reboot instead. That was a big mistake. First of many in fact. The message I believe was “kernel panic, kernel not found” or something to that nature. I contemplated the task ahead and compared that to my blank stare and the blinking prompt of my computer.

I found my bit of hope with an old USB stick containing an Arch iso I can use to maybe repair / install a fresh linux. And the journey began…

Do I know that i can start elinks in the shell and open the wiki? Yep, I know. So I just have to follow the article with a switch of a tab. Right. Remember not to go too fast or an important point go passed you. Many things, most things hold true in these pages in the wiki. I’m grateful that people do spend time making these wiki pages for the public who needs them. It is much more practical this way than spending one on one time for customer support. If you are a company who can afford it then yes, a call center is a nice investment. But for a non-profit, start up, little budget for production let alone customer support, a wiki page goes much further.

I learned that my motherboard is an Asus Z97 but most importantly, it is strictly UEFI capable, a fact which will dictate my woes for the next 24 hours. I will need a boot loader partition for it. I was informed I need 550M or more of fat partition on the device I want to boot. I am new to these and it showed. I mixed up my choices and followed steps that i shouldn’t do. I ended in a grub shell. Restart.

I learned that the efi directory cannot reside in LVM. I have to partition a 550M partition in bare metal. On second thought I decided to put root and home on bare metal SSD. No more surprises okay? I still ended in a grub shell a few times after that. Restart.

I learned that putting a password on my bios, on my motherboard settings, might be a mistake. On the pro side I now remember my bios password even in sleep. That USB stick containing the Arch iso stood its ground against my relentless booting. I am worried that the USB stick might give up the ghost.

There are many choices of bootloader apparently. I mixed up my steps of installing and configuring grub with systemd-boot. You have to forgive me, it was 1 o’clock in the morning. I was using elinks, all text, no web formatting. Each line of text flows into the next. It’s hard to read text without paragraphs in the middle of the night. I end up in the grub shell a few more times.

There was that time when I was strongly tempted to look for an ubuntu usb stick somewhere in the desk drawer. I did tried installing ubuntu 16.04 lts but the distro for newbies wont / can’t install a bootloader on the device I want. In the final act, I ended in the grub shell too. Restart.

When i did get pass grub into a console once again, I knew I still need a graphical desktop. I picked GNOME with its 650MB download. I can do this. No Internet connection. Apparently I need to enable / start dhcpcd.service in systemd. After the download, I reboot. I am back to the console, what happened? I need to tell systemd to enable / start gdm, the gnome display manager. Voila! There was light.

Ubuntu 16.04 LTS On My Machine

I migrated my data and lvm, all my data and its backup lv’s from Arch to Ubuntu. I decided to use Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. I forgot how easy it is to install Ubuntu with its graphic installer. But it isn’t just the graphics installer but the installer itself would go out of its way to install this despite my “mistakes”. For example I want to mount my Musiclv to /home/AUser/Music but made an account for BUser and so on. So it happily installs ubuntu but after booting and starting my BUser session I quickly found that there are two user filesystems for home. One for AUser and the second for BUser. On second thought this method is the “safe” way to do this. My hat’s off to Ubuntu. I also have to check my /etc/fstab if my lv’s were given the right mountpoints. I have four lv’s to check and they were all there and the data is safe.

The bad news is the stock GNOME config files for the desktop wreck havoc on Unity as it became confused with my Wallpapers and just presented a black wall. I had to manually type in my keyboard shortcuts.

I have internet connection from the get go. Never lost it.