So a few nights ago (I don’t remember how many because my sleep schedule is so messed up) I installed NetBSD on an old box I had lying around. This box is a P2 running at maybe 266mhz with 64mb of RAM–it’s been a while since I’ve seen the specs, but these are roughly them. This was the second computer I have ever purchased, and has gone through so many operating systems, I can’t believe the hard disk still spins up. Win98 to Ubuntu to Debian to CentOS to- well, you get the idea.

So I got the impulse to install something new on it. I mean, I completely ignored it for a year or two, and I couldn’t remember any passwords, so an install was logical, but normally I would have just flipped the switch and forgot about it for longer. Something grabbed me. I chose to go with NetBSD because I had used flavors of Linux and Windows before, but had no experience at all with a BSD environment. So the install seems to go well, it boots, I can login, but after a while, I thought it to be lacking. Maybe a bit over my head. There was no help command, it didn’t seem to network its… I was lost. So instead of continuing with this install, I went over it with a familiar face: Debian.

I had installed Debian for the first time maybe 2 years prior when I had absolutely zero experience. I was trying to make a web server, and needless to say, that project failed. I could always install NetBSD again later, but for now I wanted something I could use right out of the box.

The install goes smoothly, and everything settles in nicely. This time, I know the thing networked correctly because I used a bare bones net-install disc and it had to connect to the Debian ftp servers to get the additional software to accompany the core. So everything loads up, I apt-get a few more applications, screw around with making directories and whatnot, and admire my install.

After getting an sshd installed, I can now just SSH into the box from any computer on my LAN, and possibly anywhere on the internet if I ever decide to forward the port. So know, I have remote access from upstairs, and its as if I’m sitting right in front of box. The thing I really appreciate about this Debian install is being able to¬† run scripts, may they be python, perl, or my favorite: bash. This way, I can execute a whole new set of programs that I had previously been locked out of due to OS restrictions.

The WOPR (Named after the Wargames computer) running a simple “Hello World” script.

The WOPR (Named after the Wargames computer) running a simple “Hello World” script.