blog // ~ben

a blog about tildes and other things

mastodon postgres upgrade fun

October 28, 2020 — ~ben

howdy friends!

if you’re a mastodon user on (the tildeverse mastodon instance), you might’ve noticed some downtime recently.

here’s a quick recap of what went down during the upgrade process.


default branch name

June 16, 2020 — ~ben

changing git's default branch name has come up recently as an easy action we can take to update our language and remove harmful ideas from our daily usage.

i'm concerned that this effort to change the language used is ultimately a symbolic gesture to avoid scrutiny into actual change (notably github's push for this change and continued contracts with ICE).

however, it's an easy change to make.

let's have a look at how to change it for new repos:

mkdir -p ~/.config/git/template
echo "ref: refs/head/main" ~/.config/git/template/HEAD
git config --global init.templateDir ~/.config/git/template

note that you can put this template dir anywhere you like.

you can also set this system-wide (not just for your user) in /usr/share, but note that this might get overriden by package updates.

echo "ref: refs/head/main" | sudo tee /usr/share/git-core/templates/HEAD

the next time you git init, you'll be on a branch named main.

to change an existing repo, you can use the -m switch of git-branch:

git checkout master
git branch -m master main

push with -u to your remote if needed and update the default branch in the repo settings in the hosting platform of choice.

it's a relatively easy change, but don't kid yourself that it makes any real impact. go protest, donate and sign petitions, and get out there to fix the actual problems.

tags: git, linux, dev

tools and services

March 03, 2020 — ~ben

inspired by tomasino's recent post, i'd like to detail some of the stuff that i rent and use.


general update

February 03, 2020 — ~ben

it's been quite a long time since i posted anything here on this blog.

i've been playing with gruvbox-css, decided to switch my blog to use it and finally realized it's been almost a year since i posted anything at all.

i don't have anything in particular to post today so i figured it would be good to give a general update since the last time i posted.


networking nonsense

February 11, 2019 — ~ben

i've recently been working on setting up drone ci on the machine. however, there's been something strange going on with the networking on there.


raid nonsense

January 13, 2019 — ~ben

last week i did some maintenance on the box. probably should have written about it sooner but i didn't make time for it until now.


weechat setup

November 16, 2018 — ~ben

so you decided to switch from irssi to weechat?

what options do you need to set? what plugins? what scripts?

i'll go over some of the most essential of these, and share my full configs.


proactive redundancy

November 15, 2018 — ~ben

after the fiasco earlier this week, i've been taking steps to minimize the impact if were to go down. it's still a large spof (single-point-of-failure), but i'm reasonably certain that at least the irc net will remain up and functional in the event of another outage.


november 13 post mortem

November 13, 2018 — ~ben

we had something of an outage on november 13, 2018 on

i awoke, not suspecting anything to be amiss. as soon as i logged in to check my email and irc mentions, it became clear. was at the least inaccessible, and at the worst, down completely. according the message in my inbox, there hade been an attempted "attack" from my IP.



September 20, 2018 — ~ben

i just got back from a 10-day backpacking trip to italy and i'd like to share some of the photos i took!

the travel plan was rome -> venice -> florence -> naples -> pompei/vesuvius -> capri -> amalfi

this is the roman forum (with colosseum in the background) as seen from the palatine.