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Installing Programs on Linux Without root

Prefixed Portage

Most Linux distributions have great package managers like apt or portage. But installing programs when you don't have root access can be a pain. You need to find, download and install all the dependencies and their dependencies, setup a prefix somewhere in your home folder and hope that everything works.

Prefixed portage is perfect for those kinds of situations. It's a modified version of portage, the package manager of the Gentoo distribution. I am using it on a computer running Linux, but you can also use it on OS X, FreeBSD and Solaris to install applications and libraries from the portage repository.

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Secure website-authentication using GPG keys

Overview

Currently, most websites log you in the same way: You enter a username and password, the web-server hashes the password (generally via MD5(), or SHA1()). This hash is then compared to the one stored in a database - if it matches, the user knows the original password, so it logs them in.

This method has numerous problems, such as the password being sent unencrypted to the web-server, and the fact many users reuse passwords, if an intruder works out a users password (though any means), there is a good chance they can log into the same users email account, online banking etc etc..

The whole username/password login method has many flaws, most are down to the fact most people struggle to remember a single 5-6 character password, let alone multiple random messy looking passwords such as "Xm2K?pdT&av", as most "good password guides" suggest.

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