Huginn: Writing a simple agent network.

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EDIT: 20170123 - My reviewers have suggested some edits to the article, many of which I've applied.

It's been a while since I wrote a Huginn tutorial, so let's start with a basic one to get you comfortable with the idea of building an agent network.  This agent network will run every half hour, poll a REST API endpoint, and e-mail you what it gets.  You'll have to have access to an already running Huginn instance that can send outbound e-mail.  This post is going to be kind of lengthy, but that's because I'm laying out some fundamentals.  Once you understand …

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Logging into a Falcon RAID shelf.

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Publically posted for future reference by sysadmins everywhere.

Regarding the Falcon RAID shelf, model ESA16G1B-0030 (3U high, sixteen SATA drive bays, hardware RAID, SCSI interface, two crappy serial ports (headphone jacks? really? you folks took this whole binary thing way too literally!), Ethernet jack, flip-out ears on the front with a rudimentary control panel on the left-hand side) from RAID, Inc. I just inherited one of these at work with no documentation, warranty, or support for it whatsoever. Consequently, I've spent most of a week trying to figure out how to set the damned thing up. Also, I haven't been …

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Home IT fail.

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As you no doubt have observed I've been conspicuously absent for the past couple of weeks, at least since returning from a long-overdue vacation with Lyssa in lovely Portland, Oregon. Much of my time has been spent at work doing the things that bastards like me get paid to do: run and fix backups, install software, patch systems, run audits, and generally keep things chugging along smoothly for the folks who do everything else. Due to the weather in the DC metroplex taking a turn for the rainy and cold (as it's wont to do every Samhain) my commute has …

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Last weekend, by this weekend.

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Late on Friday afternoon, Lyssa and I hurriedly packed our bags, jumped into the TARDIS, and set course northward once again for southwestern Pennsylvania and the general direction of home. As I've alluded to a few times, we're getting married in October and thus there are many plans to make, things to get, and arrangements to hammer out. In the early twenty-first century we can do many of these things over the net or on the telephone, but sometimes matters require the up close and personal touch. Things like tasting samples of wedding cake and taking recon photographs of the …

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WGA phones home, even when you don't install it.

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WGA - Windows Genuine Advantage. A software agent that runs on installs of Windows to make sure that you're not using a pirated copy. Unless you let it install itself, you'll have a hell of a time updating your system because a running WGA agent is required to run Windows Update. Of course, you can go to the Knowledge Base and download the updates one by one, but when you take into account how many updates there are, you may as well install it yourself.

Interestingly, if you refuse to let the WGA hotfix/update/agent/spyware install itself it phones …

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