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Block Level Clone of HDD

I am attempting to pull this info into a script that would prompt the individual running it for details. Info such as the name of the output name, credentials used to mount network shares, selection of the drive which will be cloned.

Below are steps that work, wondering if I can build a script around this to simplify my task.

#Make Mount Location
sudo mkdir /mnt/backup-folder

#Mount Network Share (in this case its a windows file share)
sudo mount -t cifs -o username=jermsmit // /mnt/backup/

#Validate Mount of Share
ls /mnt/backup

#Use fdisk to display disk device to be cloned
# example /dev/sda
sudo fdisk -l

#Clone and Provide MD5 has of Disk
#We change into root with the sudo -i command: 
sudo -i
#We issue the following command replacing 'pc1' with a friendly name
pv < /dev/sda | tee /mnt/backup/pc1.img | md5sum > /mnt/backup/pc1.md5

Why block-level vs file-level clone?

Block-level clones are beneficial because they copy all recognized files, in addition to those that have been deleted, corrupted, from the original disk and filesystem. If you have inadvertently deleted an important file and do not have a file recovery tool, using a cloning program to immediately create a block-level clone will increase your chances of recovering the file since it lessens the chance that the file’s data blocks will be overwritten.

vSphere Customization Specification and Ubuntu 17.10

Has anyone noticed issues with #vSphere Customization Specification and #Ubuntu 17.10 (GNU/Linux 4.13.0-25-generic x86_64) – Now that the network settings are located in: /etc/netplan/01-netcfg.yaml, I’m back to manually updating IP information (Server Naming still works).

Although the traditional /etc/network/interfaces reflects the information provided by the customization process, the host still acquires a DHCP issued address. After some digging I was able to find out that this information was no longer being referenced and is now being pulled from:/etc/netplan/01-netcfg.yaml

Here are the IP configuration details


# This file describes the network interfaces available on your system
# and how to activate them. For more information, see interfaces(5).

source /etc/network/interfaces.d/*

# The loopback network interface
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

# The primary network interface
auto ens160
#iface ens160 inet dhcp
iface ens160 inet static


# This file describes the network interfaces available on your system
# For more information, see netplan(5).
version: 2
renderer: networkd
dhcp4: no
addresses: []
addresses: [,]

Network Wide Ad & Malicious Website Blocking | Pi-Hole

For a few months now I have used the software package named Pi-Hole as an internal network DNS server to prevent ad sites in addition to malicious websites from being accessible form compute resources on my home network.

Pi-Hole is a small install that can be installed on any Linux system and it works like a charm.

Install is simple, just run the following command:

curl -sSL | bash

Answer a few questions about how you would like the software configured and your up and running.

This is a very useful software this gives you many options to report on the activity of the systems on your network and what connections were requested and those blocked.

For more information and details please visit:

The following video also shows the installation process via a Putty SSH session.


Malicious Listsused to block phishing, and malware sites



Almost 50% of my home network traffic is junk, and so is yours. Do something about it, because your privacy is being taken from you and sold.

Tech Short: How To Change The MTU – Server 2016


Troubleshooting an application issues which could possibly be network related.  I found myself needing to make some adjustment to the maximum transmission unit (MTU) setting of my server.  As such what better time to post a quick technical short on how to go about doing this.


How To Change The MTU – Windows Server 2016


  • Logon and Administrator permission on Server
  • Network Connectivity
  • Time to reboot



From the desktop of your Windows Server 2016 server open an Administrative command prompt by Right-Clicking on the start button and select  – Command Prompt (Admin).

Once in the command prompt you we be using netsh to determine the IDX of the installed interface devices. this is performed by using the following command:  netsh interface ipv4 show interfaces

Take note of the IDX interface that you would like to change the MTU on as this is what we need to specify when changing the MTU settings.

Using netsh again you issue the following command: netsh interface ipv4 set subinterface “number-goes-here” mtu=1400 store=persistent

Please note that the subinerface will be the IDX number from the first netsh command and that the MTU setting is a value less than the original 1500.

Now you can reboot to have the changes take effect.  I have also noticed the disabling the interface and  re-enabling also works.



Disable Windows Firewall Server Core

Server Core now installed and what is the first command I choose to run in PowerShell

Its a command to disable all firewall profiles:

netsh advfirewall set allprofiles state off