Thoughts on data safety

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Data safety is very important but often neglected. How important keeping one's data safe really is gets often recognized when disasters already happened. This article covers a few ideas how to prevent data loss even if your hard drive crashes or your house is on fire.

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Boot your Linux silently

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When you freshly set up a Linux distribution by hand, you get a lot of verbose output when booting into your system, but also install'n'go distributions like Ubuntu oder SUSE output some text when loading the kernel. This is not always desired and many people want to suppress these insistent system messages, but it's not as easy as you might think.

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Configuring your console pager

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The UNIX philosophy is based on the DRY principle which declares: “Don't repeat yourself”. Therefore, a program just does what it's made for and uses libraries or even other programs on your system to do a more advanced job. Some of these auxiliary programs are user definable and probably you already know the EDITOR environment variable, which specifies your default editor for the console. This is used, e.g., for the command visudo, which opens your /etc/sudoers file safely, or by svn to input a commit comment. But another important component is your console pager, which is used to display textual content on the console.

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Set up GTK application icons on KDE

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Gnome and KDE come more and more together but there are still some differences which sometimes might lead to incompatibilities between these two large desktop environments. Whereas you have relatively few problems with KDE applications on Gnome there are far more problems when using Gnome applications on KDE even though there are some compatibility engines. In this Howto Blog post I'll show you a way to converge GTK and Qt as much as possible from the perspective of a KDE system.

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What Ext can do for you

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The Linux Extended File System (Ext) originally invented in 1992 was the first generation of the well known Linux default file system. Ext is inspired by the Unix File System (UFS) and now exists in the fourth generation which is Ext4. As the first blog entry here on refining-linux.org I'll be showing you some of the great features of Ext2, Ext3 and Ext4!

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