linux

Alternatives to Firefox on Manjaro Linux

6 minute read Updated

A quick rundown of Firefox browser alternatives you should be aware of.

Last week Firefox suffered multiple zero-day vulnerabilities, prompting renewed interest in a browser discussion thread on the Manjaro Forums.

Ironically the reason I’m using Manjaro in the first place is because macOS itself had several zero-day vulnerabilities recently, prompting me to perform a serious back-up of macOS and all my files on iCloud.

Thankfully switching browsers is trivial compared to switching operating systems on macOS. So herein I’ll show you how to easily install a few different browsers so you can try them out and decide for yourself which you prefer.

Burying Firefox's White Tab of Death

3 minute read Updated

How to change the Firefox New Tab page for suitable display in low-light.

I don’t know about you but I really like dark interfaces. Dark interfaces use less battery on AMOLED screens, reduce eye strain at night, and help protect you from shoulder surfers and nosy bar flies. Plus they just look good.

Which is why I was a bit miffed after installing ghacks-user.js to lock-down security in Firefox Quantum. I finished setup right before bed, opened the browser and – WHAM – my entire room illuminated with New Tab page:

Encrypted Internet with WireGuard

9 minute read Enclosure Updated

How to install and configure WireGuard on Manjaro Linux, a step-by-step guide.

One of the motivations behind dual-booting Linux on my MacBook Pro was to take back control of my personal data. Not just because Apple uses faux encryption on iCloud. And not because macOS has been shown to leave users open to eavesdropping exploits. But because when I use my Mac with macOS the operating system gratuitously beams out activity records1, sharing information I’d rather keep private with people I don’t personally know nor have I ever met. And without the ability to shut it off, I find my privacy – the sentient and autonomous nature of my very being – constantly under attack.

In many instances, privacy is threatened not by singular egregious acts, but by a slow series of relatively minor acts which gradually begin to add up.

I've Got Nothing to Hide and Other Misunderstandings of Privacy

In this short guide I’ll show you how to encrypt and route your local Internet traffic through a fast, modern, and secure VPN tunnel called WireGuard using a free and open source operating system called Manjaro Linux. I will explain how to install WireGuard on Manjro, share a simple means of establishing and testing an encrypted Internet connection, and leave you with next steps and personal experience to help further your understanding and gain confidence getting started.

Dual-Boot Manjaro Linux & macOS Mojave

12 minute read Updated

Improve the utility and enjoyment of your MacBook. Learn how to dual-boot macOS Mojave and Manjaro Linux directly from your Apple SSD.

Are you familiar with the concept of “habit fields”? They’re these magical auras we give to everyday objects, assigning them purpose and allowing us to focus our awareness to accomplish tasks faster. But habit fields can work against you as well, if you’re not careful:

If you’ve been trying to do everything from one place and one device, then you may need to make a conscious decision to divide different modes of behavior.

Jack Cheng, Habit Fields (2010)

One device you may be trying to do everything from one place is the MacBook Pro. With the beefy specs on the flagship Apple notebook it can be easy to piledrive too many activities all into one place, affecting your Mac’s habit field.

But there’s a trick you can use to divide different modes of behavior on a Mac. And that’s to add a second operating system and dual-boot. Here’s how to install and dual-boot Manjaro Linux alongside macOS Mojave on a MacBook Pro.

A Back-End for Backbone.js Apps

2 minute read Published

Using Ruby, Sinatra and MongoDB on Windows

After writing about Developing Web Apps on Windows with Vagrant spent some time immersing myself in Ruby and Ruby Gems. Tonight, while catching up on some articles in my Pocket, I ran across the following article from Addy Osmani: Building Backbone.js Apps With Ruby, Sinatra, MongoDB and Haml.

Sweet. In addition to Addy’s very awesome and open-source book Backbone Fundamentals, he’s also writing some useful related articles. And though I’d likely ditch haml in favor of Emblem with Swag, Addy’s article ought to be a good starting point for the Ruby newbie.

Installing and Using the rupa/z Shell Script

2 minute read Published

Navigate Nix-based filesystems fast using the frecency algorithm.

rupa/z is an amazing shell script that allows users to traverse a filesystem in no time flat. Use it if you spend any time at all changing directories in a *nix environment. It will improve productivity and spare fat fingers quite a bit of backpedaling.

SFTP to Ubuntu with Sublime Text

7 minute read Published

Learn how to use Sublime Text to SFTP to an Ubuntu server for simple remote website administration.

About a year ago I explained how to set-up Remote Projects in Eclipse. Since then I’ve ditched Eclipse in favor of Sublime Text. But, even with the cat’s pajamas of modern code editors (that’s Sublime), getting source files from development to production meant carrying around some extra baggage:

  • A deployment process, often manual, or, if automated, tightly coupled with the application sources (zomg! oh n0s!!), must be created and followed.
  • At least two environments, likely not running on the same platform, must be stood-up and carried: development and production.
  • Windows users, who may not have a good method for developing for today’s Linux-based hosting environments, are pretty much snowed from the get-go.

I’m deliberately oversimplifying here for the sake of TL;DR, so let me get the point. If you’re running a small site, are capable of failing fast and failing often, don’t have a lot of code contributors or are for some reason stuck working on an IBM Aptiva with 16MB RAM upgrade, you can pretty much skip the pain points in the list above and just manage code directly on the web server remotely. How is that possible? Simple. SFTP to Ubuntu server with Sublime Text as explained in this article.