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    Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
    PyBlosxom

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    Sun, 21 Mar 2010


    /xLife/Expatriation: Malaysia Welcomes Expatriates

    Though not a technical post, this information is definitely important for those living an international freelancing type of life-style. Specifically, in my case, where to go if life in China becomes impossible for some reason?

    This post[1] contains some nice detail about Malaysia and their "My Second Home Programme"[2]. Like Hong Kong, ninety day visa free-stays are the norm in Malaysia. And long term residency is easy if you have a bit of money in the bank, as little as $45,000 for those over 50.

    [1] http://www.sovereignman.com/expat/questions-rfid-chips-moving-retirement-funds-offshore-businesses-panamanian-citizenship/
    [2] http://www.mm2h.gov.my/

    posted at: 10:31 | path: /xLife/Expatriation | permanent link to this entry

    Sat, 20 Mar 2010


    /Admin/backups/backuppc: Localhost Backup Broken on Ubuntu Desktop Backuppc

    This post[1] was helpful, but not quite enough, to get backuppc working on localhost. (Note that this works out of the box on any Debian install I have ever tried....)

    Below is my /etc/backuppc/localhost.pl to get backup of /etc on localhost working on a Karmic Ubuntu Desktop machine:

    $Conf{XferMethod} = 'tar'; $Conf{TarShareName} = ['/etc']; # with some help from https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BackupPC $Conf{TarClientCmd} = '/usr/bin/env LC_ALL=C sudo $tarPath -c -v -f - -C $shareName' . ' --totals'; $Conf{TarClientRestoreCmd} = '/usr/bin/env LC_ALL=C sudo $tarPath -x -p --numeric-owner --same-owner' . ' -v -f - -C $shareName+'; # remove extra shell escapes ($fileList+ etc.) that are # needed for remote backups but may break local ones $Conf{TarFullArgs} = '$fileList'; $Conf{TarIncrArgs} = '--newer=$incrDate $fileList';

    Basically I took the existing TarClientCmd and TarClientRestoreCmd settings and prefixed them with "sudo". And added:

    backuppc ALL=NOPASSWD: ALL

    to the bottom after invoking "visudo".

    [1] https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BackupPC

    posted at: 01:38 | path: /Admin/backups/backuppc | permanent link to this entry

    Fri, 19 Mar 2010


    /xLife/China/Beijing/OpenSource: Strange Goings On at Novell

    I do not normally blog about employment negotiations, but this was a strange one. I shake my head every time I think about it....

    The story is not very complicated: The Beijing office of Novell posted a job opening on a local website. I responded. There was an interview, which seemed to go well enough. A couple weeks later I received a phone call followed by an e-mail, with an offer. And here is where things go a little off the rails....

    Normally one would expect an offer, especially from a big company, to be, well, SOLID. Ie. at that point, if I accept the terms of the offer, the job is mine, if perhaps conditional upon a probationary period. Based upon this understanding of the situation, I actually turned down an interview in the following couple of days....

    Apparently though, at least in Beijing when dealing with Novell, there is no such "solidity". After I had already accepted the offer, the HR person I was dealing with asked me what kind of visa I had. I told her an 'F' (rather typical, I think, of someone working freelance in China).

    "Oh". "You need to have a work permit already." What she is talking about basically is a "Z" visa, which is only held by full-time employees sponsored by their employers. In my current situation, which was no secret to anyone, my holding a Z visa was quite an unreasonable assumption. And then she just kind of casually brushed away her previous offer, like it never existed.

    As any foreigner who lives in Beijing knows, the silliest part of this exchange is making a big deal about any kind of a Visa in Beijing. Getting them is fairly trivial. Even little hole-in-the-wall English schools seem to be able to get their employees Z visas, and I certainly do not have any problems renewing my F (normally....)

    So I am left contemplating three probable explanations for all of the above:

    I tend to lean toward the last explanation. But none of the above leaves me much inclined to waste my time replying to another Novell job posting.

    posted at: 09:57 | path: /xLife/China/Beijing/OpenSource | permanent link to this entry