Skip to main content

mosh for chromebook

I've never been a fan of the mosh project. I believe that their claims about being more secure than ssh are simply false since ssh is a common core component; even if it's only used to initiate the connection. I'll use the recent ssl vulnerabilities as evidence.


I'm moving into a 100% remote strategy. Meaning, I'm giving up my Windows, OSX and Linux computers in favor of a ChromeOS solution. Each of my kids have their own Asus Chromebox, I have a similar Chromebox as a stationary desktop and two Chromebooks for mobile ad experimentation. And... with the Google Pixel I even have a 3 year 1TB data plan.

I'm adapting to the remote/wireless lifestyle well. It's actually working out very well. Between tethering with my cell phone, free wifi at my favorite stores, and the library... I have never been with the ability to work. It's actually better than it was when I had my 11in MBA.

And there is one downside.

I'm putting together my server farm and I've decided to use CoreOS. There are many reasons for this decision.

  • auto updates (similar to ChromeOS)
  • containers (rkt and docker)
  • clustering and hs (etcd, fleet)
And while I'm also doing my development on the CoreOS server I'm using the CoreOS-toolbox. Unfortunately there are a few weaknesses. (a) only one instance at a time per user (b) tmux and screen are ok but when you drop the connection everything is terminated. (c) have you ever seen those people rnuning around the office with their computers open because they did not want to lose their active sessions.

So there are a couple of options.

Install the mosh server on the CoreOS host and use that as your point of entry. To the credit of the CoreOS designers there is no package manager. So that's just not going to work. And frankly I do not think I want my users logging in this way.

The next option is to integrate mosh into the toolbox script. This should work, for the most part, however it's also going to create some entropy(if that's the right word). The scenario is like this:  the user logs in. CoreOS authentication, like others, grabs the shell script from the passwd file and executes it. At this point the ssh session has been established and forwards the connection to mosh... assuming that this works (does not currently). 

Some observations:
  • Assuming I've lost the client connection... logging in with a second connection should still fail because it's a second connection request an one is already in progress
  • we will need a way to kill the current connection if the client suffers a failure or related use-cases
  • The active client session should still be able to reestablish that server connection
This might be a strong use-case for mosh.


Popular posts from this blog

Entry level cost for CoreOS+Tectonic

CoreOS and Tectonic start their pricing at 10 servers. Managed CoreOS starts at $1000 per month for those first 10 servers and Tectonic is $5000 for the same 10 servers. Annualized that is $85K or at least one employee depending on your market. As a single employee company I'd rather hire the employee. Specially since I only have 3 servers.

The pricing is biased toward the largest servers with the largest capacities; my dual core 32GB i5 IntelNuc can never be mistaken for a 96-CPU dual or quad core DELL

If CoreOS does not figure out a different barrier of entry they are going to follow the Borland path to obscurity.

UPDATE 2017-10-30: With gratitude the CoreOS team has provided updated information on their pricing, however, I stand by my conclusion that the effective cost is lower when you deploy monster machines. The cost per node of my 1 CPU Intel NUC is the same as a 96 CPU server when you get beyond 10 nodes. I'll also reiterate that while my pricing notes are not currently…

eGalax touch on default Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS

I have not had success with the touch drivers as yet.  The touch works and evtest also seems to report events, however, I have noticed that the button click is not working and no matter what I do xinput refuses to configure the buttons correctly.  When I downgraded to ubuntu 10.04 LTS everything sort of worked... there must have been something in the kermel as 10.04 was in the 2.6 kernel and 4.04 is in the 3.x branch.

One thing ... all of the documentation pointed to the wrong website or one in Taiwanese. I was finally able to locate the drivers again: (it would have been nice if they provided the install instructions in text rather than PDF)
Please open the document "EETI_eGTouch_Programming_Guide" under the Guide directory, and follow the Guidline to install driver.
download the appropriate versionunzip the fileread the programming manual And from that I'm distilling to the following: execute the answer all of the questio…

Prometheus vs Bosun

In conclusion... while Bosun(B) is still not the ideal monitoring system neither is Prometheus(P).


I am running Bosun in a Docker container hosted on CoreOS. Fleet service/unit files keep it running. However in once case I have experienced at least one severe crash as a result of a disk full condition. That it is implemented as part golang, java and python is an annoyance. The MIT license is about the only good thing.

I am trying to integrate Prometheus into my pipeline but losing steam fast. The Prometheus design seems to desire that you integrate your own cache inside your application and then allow the server to scrape the data, however, if the interval between scrapes is shorter than the longest transient session of your application then you need a gateway. A place to shuttle your data that will be a little more persistent.

(1) storing the data in my application might get me started more quickly
(2) getting the server to pull the data might be more secure
(3) using a push g…