Installing Letsencrypt Certificates Manually

I needed a certificate for my private cloud server on my LAN. It is normally an automatic thing to install and update letsencrypt certificates, however with a private server that is not on the internet one must run the commands manually every 90 days.

certbot -d --manual --preferred-challenges dns certonly

Please deploy a DNS TXT record under the name with the following value:


Saving debug log to /var/log/letsencrypt/letsencrypt.log
Enter email address (used for urgent renewal and security notices) (Enter 'c' to

Please read the Terms of Service at You must
agree in order to register with the ACME server at
(A)gree/(C)ancel: A
Obtaining a new certificate
Performing the following challenges:
dns-01 challenge for

NOTE: The IP of this machine will be publicly logged as having requested this
certificate. If you're running certbot in manual mode on a machine that is not
your server, please ensure you're okay with that.

Are you OK with your IP being logged?
(Y)es/(N)o: Y

Please deploy a DNS TXT record under the name with the following value:


Once this is deployed,
Press Enter to Continue

Waiting for verification...
Cleaning up challenges
Generating key (2048 bits): /etc/letsencrypt/keys/0000_key-certbot.pem
Creating CSR: /etc/letsencrypt/csr/0000_csr-certbot.pem

 - Congratulations! Your certificate and chain have been saved at
   /etc/letsencrypt/live/ Your cert
   will expire on 2019-01-05. To obtain a new or tweaked version of
   this certificate in the future, simply run certbot again. To
   non-interactively renew *all* of your certificates, run "certbot
 - If you lose your account credentials, you can recover through
   e-mails sent to
 - Your account credentials have been saved in your Certbot
   configuration directory at /etc/letsencrypt. You should make a
   secure backup of this folder now. This configuration directory will
   also contain certificates and private keys obtained by Certbot so
   making regular backups of this folder is ideal.
 - If you like Certbot, please consider supporting our work by:

   Donating to ISRG / Let's Encrypt:
   Donating to EFF:          

Split screen with tmux

I have been a long time screen user when connecting to remote machines where I don’t want to lose work if the connection drops.  I started using tmux and have been won over by it’s split screen feature.

To start tmux just run tmux and it will start and give you a nice status bar at the bottom.  You can list out your tmux sessions with the command tmux ls, and then reattach to your session with tmux attach and the session number.

By far my favorite use for tmux is split screen so I can view multiple process outputs on the same server without opening another ssh window.  tmux uses ctrl-b for it’s commands.  ctrl-b “ will split the window horizontally, and ctrl-b % will split the window vertically.  You can then use ctrl-b o to move between window panes.

The tmux manual has got to be one of the largest man pages ever, it can do much much more too.

Vi/Emacs differences are due to keyboards

I’ve been using Vim and Emacs side by side for the last week or two, one with code in it and the other with org-mode.  It made me realize that one of the main reason the interfaces are so different, vim with mode switching, emacs with so many modifier keys are because of the keyboards they came from.

If you think about Vi being used on a ADM3A terminal keyboard you’ll see the Esc key to switch modes is much more prominent than on a modern keyboard and HJKL have arrows on them for movement.

In the case of Emacs if you look at a Symbolics Lisp machine “Space Cadet” keyboard you see there are so  many modifier keys that can be utilized.

The interfaces in each editor is not necessarily the result of some ideology about how editing should be handled, but are a product of the computing environment which they were invented in.


How to sort text using vim

In the newer vim 7 there is a :sort command. This is much easier to remember and works cross platform than using the external command.

If you have an older version of vim on unix you can use an external sort command. Move the cursor to the first line to be sorted.
ma Mark the first line as mark a.
Move to the bottom of the text to be sorted.
!`asort The ! command tells Vim to run the text through UNIX command. The `a tell the editor that the text to be worked on starts at the current line and ends at mark a. The command that the text is to go through is sort.

Insanely Assembly

I just finished reading “Revolution in the Valley – The Insanely Great Story of How The Mac Was Made” by Andy Hertzfeld. I thought I knew many of the stories about the mac’s development, but there are so many more in this book. I never knew how much of the original OS was written in assembly language, I guess I always had assumed it was written in C or Pascal. 128k of memory is so incredibly small, even in those days.

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