Stuff that matters most

icinga_camp_san_francisco_smallIt’s been a while since I decided to go on my journey to Nuremberg working for NETWAYS, doing more stuff with Icinga and get to know what I like most – work on a team with spirit and dedication, learning new things all the way and get the chance to join conferences & meetups. That was 2012, and it’s nearly 2 years already. 2 years where we finally released Icinga 2 after 20 months of development, sleepless nights, and still not stopping there.

What really matters to me, is not the code, or the things we do. It’s the way we do it – professional, but with a love of fun, spontaneity and team work. Getting a drink together on Friday at 4pm, just because we like it. Going skiing together (where I come from), BBQ, XMas party, … there are countless ways you can join this lovely little family (did I mention we loved the spirit of #atemlos and used that for our #b2run slogan?). It doesn’t matter which dialect you’re using – even my Austrian slang sounds familiar these days.

My work and dedication is now being honored by getting invited to San Francisco, joining my fellow colleagues and Icinga team members on the upcoming Icinga Camp. I am grateful for that, that’s something I never expected to happen after the huge success we already gained through our activities online & at various conferences. After my very first Icinga 2 Training last week with kind & positive feedback, it literally pushes my motivation to the next level. Still, I am an Icinga team member for 5+ years now, and it’s even more fun when you know that your work as a team (Icinga and Netways, that is) is still going strong.

It feels like a dream you keep dreaming as a child – and I haven’t been to USA – and soon, in some hours, it will certainly become true. Cannot wait to visit “The City”, and meeting new Icinga users. But also meeting each other where travelling isn’t always possible – I feel glad to finally meet Matthew and Sam being part of the Icinga team 🙂 We (Tom, Markus & me) are leaving SFO after Icinga Camp for a road trip going south (or east even) – Monteray, Sequoia, Death Valley, Las Vegas and finally Los Angeles. Stuff you’ll do only once 🙂

And finally, the most important impressions you’ll never forget – things you cannot plan, surprises which will come, and the “friends & family” feeling 🙂

See you in San Francisco!


Time for changes – introducing Fedora

Everytime the xserver-xorg-* packages include abi changes, they’re migrated to Debian testing after a while. Using the non-free nvidia drivers just because nouveau does not work on a dell latitude e6540 with an nvidia optimus chipset always breaks. Even if it may be my own fault, I can’t work like that. Similar example with Vagrant & Virtualbox. Time for something old & new – after fc5 now Fedora 20 again. A while back I’ve already dropped my KDE desktop, using Gnome 3. Considering that I am a long time Icinga Core & Web RPM package hacker, an interesting move into the right direction.

Analyze and optimize windows startup

Once in a while I’m getting my hands dirty with Windows fixing PC problems for friends & family.
While the old tool machinery with HihackThis, CCleaner, Spybot, etc still helps to analyze the windows operating system, the Microsoft provided toolset did get better. Especially when it comes to performance analysis in regards of low-end hardware running with fancy graphics provided with Win8.

The windows performance analyzer for Windows 8 seems pretty good, you’ll only need to download the Windows Software Development Kit. Once asked which component should be installed, only choose “Windows Performance Toolkit”.

In order to profile the system startup and logon procedure, it’s necessary to stop working, save all data and let Windows handle its own reboot. Using Windows 7, search for “cmd” in the start menu and rightclick on it “Start as administrator”. In Windows 8, this is more shortcut driven using “Win + X” and selecting the Command Prompt being run as administrator.

Now type the following to trace the boot time and save the results directly onto disk C: – Windows will reboot after a while.

xbootmgr -trace boot -resultpath C:

After logon, let the countdown reach zero and allow capturing to finish and store the result set on disk. Open C:\boot_BASE+CSWITCH_1.etl with the Windows Performance Analyzer.


While it’s not very satisfying to google processes lasting long, an alternative tool is needed. Some years ago, Microsoft bought the SysInternals Developers and created the “Windows Sysinternals” collection, featuring AutoRuns. Download and extract it somewhere, and then run autoruns.exe as administrator.

Select the “logon” tab, and kick everything related to update checks, system tray icons (CYberlink, ATI CCC are quite nasty). Make sure to keep the sidebar, Antivirus software and audio controlling, if required.


Search for mails by size and age attributes in Gmail

I got my Gmail account during the early beta invite only phasis, and the mailbox size increased ever since (remember the fancy mb counter, eh? 😉 ). Drive and other cloud backup storage hadn’t been invented yet, and sometimes sending mails to yourself were the best backup ever. Other than that, it’s just the increasing size of documents, scans and images causing my mailbox to grow continously.

Once in a while, you may want to move/clean those files. Using the gmail web application, type the following to search for size greater equal 5 MB and older than 1 year.

size:5m older_than:1y


new (font) style

I’m not really a (web) designer, but still I do know how to use gimp. Though, creating a new blog logo from scratch isn’t really my type of story so I was searching for something different. Ever since I’ve registered that domain “” for the reason of writing my personal thoughts and adventures somewhere safe in combination with the cool “legen-wait-for-it-dary!” saying from HIMYM, I thought about something related to that.

Today I’m giving the handwriting font Learning Curve Pro a shot. Installation on Debian is easy – download the font, open it in dolphin with the font viewer and choose “Install”. After that, make sure to refresh the fonts cache and reopen all applications.

$ sudo fc-cache -f -v

Create a new png with 1600×230 and upload the final version to wordpress theme then 😉

visualize icinga git with gource

install the following pre-requisites:

add debian multimedia repo –

$ sudo apt-get install x264 ffmpeg gource

make sure you’ll get the latest on all projects:

$ cd ~/icinga/gource
$ git clone git://
$ git clone git://
$ git clone git://
$ git clone git://
$ cd icinga-core

optional: if you want to use gravatars, fetch that perl script and run it. it will place fetched avatars in .git/avatar which can be used in below’s example. if you are omitting this, remove the param in the commands below.

$ perl

for each project, we need to get the git log from the past year (or similar period)

 $ git log --pretty=format:user:%aN%n%at --reverse --raw --encoding=UTF-8 --no-renames --since="1 year ago" > git.log

1 second per day should be enough speed (-s 1). 720p for youtube is also good 🙂

$ gource --path git.log --user-image-dir .git/avatar/ -s 1 --auto-skip-seconds 0.1 --file-idle-time 50 --max-files 500 --multi-sampling -1280x720 --stop-at-end --elasticity 0.1 -b 000000 --disable-progress --user-friction .2 --disable-bloom --output-ppm-stream - | ffmpeg -an -threads 4 -y -vb 4000000 -aspect 16:9 -r 60  -f image2pipe -vcodec ppm -i - -vcodec libx264 -vpre slow gource.mp4

take the gource.mp4 and upload to wherever you want.