Reinstalling at arm’s length

Recently I had need to re-purpose a server and for convenience, I decided to do a complete wipe and reinstall since it had previously been used for all sorts of package testing, experiments, dak debugging, the list goes on. I took a careful backup and then cooked up some USB installation media, but it took so long to boot (USB1.1, yay) I ran out of time before the building was locked.

Since this box has two hard disks, and not being one to back down from a challenge, I eventually reinstalled it over the weekend with nothing – no install media, no reinstall robot or intelligent hands – just a reliable internet connection and a healthy dose of courage. Here’s how.

Dovecot, Lighttpd and SSL certificate renewals

This is a mental note really, since my certificates last two years and I’ve always forgotten what to do about it. Generate a new request: openssl req -new -key <keyfile> -out <csrfile> StartSSL throw away all properties of the request except the key, so any answers will do. Re-use the request you sent last time…