Monday, September 15, 2003

Penguins everywhere! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!

Okay, so it's 10:45 on a Monday night, I haven't had much sleep in the past 3 days, and I should REALLY go to bed... but I wanted to post something so my sister would have something to read during her convalescence. She recently had her nose broken - on purpose! I always knew she had her nose out of joint most of the time but it's fixed now.

Anyway... I am one step closer... well, maybe half a step closer - to getting my web sites back up and running.

It was a Tuesday afternoon... no... wait... it was a Thursday... ... ... or was it Wednesday??? Let me start that over...

It was not a Friday afternoon a little over a week ago. The laptop was fired up and the Linux book was open to page ninety something. I got tired of farting around with vi and emacs and moving files around. I was toward the end of the chapter on file permissions - very useful, actually - and I decided I'd had just about enough of that shit. I zoomed ahead about 6 chapters and started reading about WEB SERVERS. [insert big, ominous orchestral music accent!]

I flipped through the pages, installed a couple of necessary components and was ready to start my test. Now what was the command to reveal my IP address? I pop out to a command prompt and type ipconfig but it doesn't work. I try some other command burried deep in the recesses of my mind (MAN, is it ever dusty down here) but that doesn't work either.

What to do? What to do? ... I know, I'll call Jason!

Okay... got his number... dialing... He's there! He actually answered the phone!

"Jason, what was that command in Linux to make the system tell you its IP address?"

"Go to a command prompt and type ipconfig."

"I already tried that and it didn't... well what do you know? It worked this time... THANKS!" [evil laughter inside my head - be sure to add echo effect in the film version to make it scarrier]

Armed with the correct IP address, I fire up a browser on another computer and start typing... one three nine dot seven eight dot (mumble mumble mumble). As I hit enter, I get the Apache Server test page. WOOHOO!!!!

I upload some of my own content and try again. As I hit enter, I get the Apache Server test page.

[sound of pages ruffling as I frantically search for the reason why my content is NOT being displayed]

Silly me, of course there's a configuration file. Only problem is, it's not where the book says it will be. Not wanting to waste any time, I use the move command (I knew it would come in handy - wax on, wax off) to place my content in the default directory. As I hit enter, I get the Apache Server test page.

No no, just kidding. My content came up. I ran around to the other offices, exhuberantly reciting the IP address to anyone with a browser. They weren't impressed.

"What am I looking at?"

"The web server on my laptop. It's working!"

"Oh........... that's nice."

So what if they weren't thrilled. I got it working!

Here's where it goes from a whole step to a half step...
Somewhere in the midst of all that, I had to change the ownership of the directory from root (a.k.a. god) to a new group. I couldn't figure out how to do it from the command prompt so I did it from the GUI. Not a problem until you remember that the machine that is supposed to be the actual server is a P100... it and the GUI don't get along.

Twenty-four hours later, the laptop was once again a slave to Bill Gates and Microsoft (did you know that it only takes about TWO MINUTES for the blaster worm to infect an unpatched computer?). This fact has much to do with the subject of my next post... Detroit.

It's late and I've rambled more than my share... gnite.

Keep warm and don't let your socks have any snacks after midnight.

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