Ubuntu and Google Chrome

The last few days, I’ve been repeatedly getting the following when I do an apt-get update on my Ubuntu Desktop (14.04, if that matters).

W: Failed to fetch http://dl.google.com/linux/chrome/deb/dists/stable/Release  Unable to find expected entry 'main/binary-i386/Packages' in Release file (Wrong sources.list entry or malformed file)
E: Some index files failed to download. They have been ignored, or old ones used instead.

Some light reading and specifically this post on OMGUbuntu, coupled with some instructions in the comments section, led me to the following solution which works for now.
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ShrewSoft Logo

For those of us that need to connect to clients/partners that use the Cisco VPN utility, getting it to work on Linux can sometimes be a bit of a mission. Luckily the Open Source World always has one or more alternatives. In this case, ShrewSoft VPN.

Follow the steps in this guide carefully and you’ll have the client working and running in no time.
Please note, this post is an adaption of this StackExchange question/answer.
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Java Logo

I had the issue today of not being able to install Java as can be seen below. (I snipped a lot of the garbage that we don’t need to see for the solution)

hendri@techedemic:~$ sudo apt-get install oracle-java9-installer 
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] y
Setting up oracle-java9-installer (9b81+9b81arm-1~webupd8~1) ...
Downloading Oracle Java 9...
--2015-09-30 14:35:17--  http://www.java.net/download/jdk9/archive/b81/binaries/jdk-9-ea-bin-b81-linux-x64-09_sep_2015.tar.gz
Connecting to connected.
Proxy request sent, awaiting response... 403 Sorry, not allowed to fetch that type of file: jdk-9-ea-bin-b81-linux-x64-09_sep_2015.tar.gz
2015-09-30 14:35:17 ERROR 403: Sorry, not allowed to fetch that type of file: jdk-9-ea-bin-b81-linux-x64-09_sep_2015.tar.gz.
download failed
Oracle JDK 9 is NOT installed.

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It used to be easy to manage grub. Simple changes to /boot/grub/menu.lst you were a-for-away. If you run a dual-boot environment (e.g, Ubuntu and Windows) and you want to change your Grub config to boot to a specific OS these days however (with the advent of newer versions of Grub) there are different steps to follow.

In this example, I’m running Windows 7 and Ubuntu 14.04 on the same machine in a dual-boot configuration. I need Windows to be the default menu entry.

Step 1: Find the menuentry for the operating system you want to make the default boot option

hendri@mercury:~$ grep 'menuentry ' /boot/grub/grub.cfg
menuentry 'Ubuntu' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os $menuentry_id_option 'gnulinux-simple-531984cc-cdb4-4d22-9e98-2914966fd84e' {
        menuentry 'Ubuntu, with Linux 3.16.0-30-generic' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os $menuentry_id_option 'gnulinux-3.16.0-30-generic-advanced-531984cc-cdb4-4d22-9e98-2914966fd84e' {
        menuentry 'Ubuntu, with Linux 3.16.0-30-generic (recovery mode)' --class ubuntu --class gnu-linux --class gnu --class os $menuentry_id_option 'gnulinux-3.16.0-30-generic-recovery-531984cc-cdb4-4d22-9e98-2914966fd84e' {
menuentry 'Memory test (memtest86+)' {
menuentry 'Memory test (memtest86+, serial console 115200)' {
menuentry 'Windows 7 (loader) (on /dev/sda1)' --class windows --class os $menuentry_id_option 'osprober-chain-A4AE5922AE58EE74' {
    menuentry "Memory Tester (memtest86+)" --class memtest86 --class gnu --class tool {

In the above output, copy/record the Windows 7 (loader) (on /dev/sda1) text.

Step 2: Edit /etc/default/grub using your preferred editor and make GRUB_DEFAULT the text above

GRUB_DEFAULT="Windows 7 (loader) (on /dev/sda1)"
#save and exit

Step 3: Update grub

hendri@mercury:~$ sudo update-grub

That’s it. You should now have your Windows host boot by default

This guide is loosely based on the this post but I was unable to complete the installation because of the following error:

hendri@techedemic: /var/tmp/ixgbe-4.1.2/src $ dmesg
[12270.405508] ixgbe: Unknown symbol vxlan_get_rx_port (err 0)
[12428.182904] ixgbe: Unknown symbol vxlan_get_rx_port (err 0)
[13448.131090] ixgbe: Unknown symbol vxlan_get_rx_port (err 0)
[18947.596474] ixgbe: Unknown symbol vxlan_get_rx_port (err 0)
[18975.603555] ixgbe: Unknown symbol vxlan_get_rx_port (err 0)

So, here follows the same guide, but with the missing steps I needed to complete the installation.
As a reference, I was running Kernel 3.13.0-20 before this.
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Sometimes you might need to test whether a specific port is open in Linux based on your firewall rules. Without having to install specific software (e.g, telnet server for port 21) you can test this using netcat.
This can be handy if you need to prove to a service provider that they are blocking your ports.

Example, port 21

On the server side:
For ports under 1000 you must be root/sudo user

sudo netcat -l 21

On the client side

netcat [server ip] 21

It will look like nothing has happened. On the client side, just type some random words, e.g. “Hello World!” and hit [ENTER]. If the connection was successful, you should see the same words echoed on the server side.

To end the session you can either use CTRL+C on the server side (will kill both sides) or CTRL+D on the client side (will only kill the client side)

In a previous article, Linux – Enable auto-login via SSH, I explained how you can eliminate the need to enter your password every time you log on to a specific host.

You might run into a problem where you get the following error message:
“Agent admitted failure to sign using the key”

You then need to type in the password again. Pointless.

To fix it is quite simple:
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