The UNIX® CRONicle

July 2000

Official Publication of the STL!/unix/usr/group

UNIX® is a registered trademark of the Open Group
Linux® is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds
Online version:

Table of Contents

Next Meeting Details

Wednesday, July 12, 2000 at 6:30 PM
Sunnen Products, 7910 Manchester

6:30 PM Tutorial Virtual Web Hosting in Apache - by Ed Wehner
6:30 PM Guru's Gathering Topics To Be Determined - hosted by Rich Seibel
7:00 PM Announcements (Standard Introductions & Procedure )

7:05 PM Call For Help (An opportunity for you to ask technical questions of the group)

7:15 PM Break Social, off-line conversations, & book sales

7:20 PM Admittance to building may no longer be possible See Meeting Directions

7:30 PM Presentation Bringing the Database to the Web Using Java and XML by Mark Volkmann of Object Computing, Inc.


Virtual Web Hosting in Apache - by Ed Wehner

An overview of the configuration of the Apache webserver for virtual servers (sometimes called virtual domains). Both based on IP and Name. This is how different web sites can run off of one server.

Ed Wehner, Manager of Infrastructure Technology for MEMC. Ed is our SLUUG Vice-President.

Ideas about this discussion are welcome; please send

Guru Gathering

Topics To Be Determined - Hosted by Rich Seibel

This Gathering of Gurus (GoG) is an informal discussion group of people with similar degrees of experience and common interests for open discussion. They would rather talk with peers than sit quietly and listen to the tutorial. Anyone may attend, and discussion is encouraged.

Ideas for future discussions are welcomed; please send


Bringing the Database to the Web Using Java and XML by Mark Volkmann of Object Computing, Inc.

This talk describes an approach to presenting information from databases on the web using Java and XML. It walks through the steps of querying a database using JDBC, generating XML, creating a DTD for validating it, creating an XSL style sheet to format the XML data for browser presentation, writing a Java servlet to perform these activities, and using a servlet engine to exercise the servlet.

The tools used are the Xerces XML parser, the Xalan XSL processor, and the Tomcat servlet engine. These are all free tools available from Apache.

Mark Volkmann has been working with Java since October 1995, after having been a C++ developer for several years. He has been working with XML since January 1999.

As a consultant for Object Computing, Inc. in St. Louis, Mark has assisted many companies with Java and XML application development. He has created and taught the following courses:

  • Intro. to Java,
  • Java Syntax for Non-C Programmers,
  • Java Programming,
  • Advanced Java Programming,
  • Creating Graphical User Interfaces Using Java, and
  • eXtensible Markup Language.

    Mark is a member of the St. Louis Java User Group steering committee and a regular presenter for that group.

    Next Linux SIG Meeting Is 20 July

    Recompiling the Kernel - by Craig Buchek

    Most Intel specific Linux distributions come with a generic kernel compiled for i386 hardware, a few for Pentium processors. That alone should be an indicator to you that compiling the kernel may be beneficial to your use if you have a newer CPU on your PC.

    In this presentation, we will cover compiling the Linux kernel. If the technical details are all worked out, we will attempt to do this presentation with a live demonstration.

    First we will cover downloading the kernel sources and patches. Then we will unpack the sources and apply the patches. Then we will cover configuration choices and compilation. We will also discuss installing and running the newly built kernel.

    Craig Buchek has been a computer consultant for the past 5 years. He has been using Linux since 1994. He is currently working at Wave Technologies writing training materials for Linux training courses. Some of these materials are being used by Linuxcare, Caldera, TurboLinux, and Olliance. Craig holds certifications in Linux as well as from Microsoft, Novell, Sun, and Cisco.

    Ideas about this discussion are welcome; please send

    See the basics on source code Downloading, Compiling, Installing at

    Then some Kernel Resources at

    Special Promotion(s)

    blue triangle right Title of the Month

    The July discount special will be 25% on any Java, XML and Apache books. There will be a 10% discount on all other books.

    All regularly priced titles are 10% off retail cost at the general meeting.
    (Excludes featured, or specially priced or promotional items)
    O'Reilly Logo

    The O'Reilly and Associates line of books is available at each monthly general meeting as a convenience to our members.

    Each month features a book related to that month's presentation or tutorial topic.

    Discounts off retail cost are offered to all members and each month's featured book(s) may be additionally discounted. Usually, all titles are discounted 10%, while special titles are discounted 25%.

    Upcoming Events

    [St. Louis UNIX Users Group stuff]
    SLUUG General Meeting July 12, 2000 at 6:30 PM
    Sunnen Products
    7910 Manchester (at Hanley)
    St. Louis, MO

    Steering Committee July 18, 2000 at 6:00 PM
    Daugherty Systems
    One City Place (2nd floor)
    Creve Coeur, MO

    Linux SIG July 20, 2000 at 7:00 PM
    ( TOPIC: ) Recompiling the Kernel by Craig Buchek
    Indian Trails Library
    8400 Delport Drive (at Midland)
    St. Louis, MO

    Perl Mongers Aug 3, 2000

    SLUUG General Meeting Aug 9, 2000

    9th USENIX Security Symposium Aug 14-17, 2000
    Denver, CO

    Steering Committee Aug 15, 2000

    Linux World Conf & Expo Aug 15-17, 2000
    San Jose, CA

    Linux SIG Aug 17, 2000

    Really Really Hot Day Aug 18, 2000

    Linux Business Expo Sep 25-29, 2000
    Georgia World Congress Center
    Atlanta, GA

    4th Linux Showcase Oct 10-14, 2000
    Cobb Galleria
    Atlanta, GA

    Meeting Directions

    The STL!/unix/usr/group meets the 2nd Wednesday of every month at Sunnen Products, 7910 Manchester Blvd, just east of Hanley on Manchester.

    Directions From Downtown

    1. Take 40 West to the Hanley exit.
    2. Turn left (south) onto Hanley.
    3. Turn left (east) onto Manchester, then turn right ASAP into the Sunnen Products driveway.

    See map at

    (NOTE: A security guard from Sunnen is scheduled to be at the door from 6:20 PM to 7:20 PM to allow entry. After 7:20, the door will be unattended and attendees may not be able to enter.)

    The SLUUG Steering Committee meets the Tuesday following the general meeting at 6:00 PM in the 2nd floor training room of Daugherty Systems, One City Place in Creve Coeur.

    The SLUUG Linux SIG (SLUUG-LS) meets the 3rd Thursday of every month at the Indian Trails Public Library.

    See map at

    Article(s): The following article(s) express(es) personal opinions and SLUUG exerts no more editorial control over such content than does a public library, bookstore, or newsstand. Any opinions, advice, statements, services, offers, or other information or Content expressed herein are those of the respective author(s) and not necessarily supported by SLUUG. SLUUG does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any content, nor its merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose.
    New Linux SIG Chair
    by Gary Meyer and Tom Parsons

    This is an announcement about the changes in the Linux SIG organization.

    With Matthew Feldt's move out of town, "new blood" was needed to pick up the many responsibilities he had been performing. Although Matthew had indicated for some time that there was the need for more volunteers to share the workload, we had all been slow in responding.

    Perhaps this was the motivation we needed or perhaps it was the welcome arrival of some newer faces, but we have been blessed with multiple volunteers. Luckily, all of them have expressed that they will be continuing to contribute time and effort to the organization no matter who who serves which role.

    Four of the candidates took time to meet with the steering committee and discuss the future of the SIG. We thank them and the members of the committee. There were many excellent ideas about newbies, mentoring, meeting locations, installfests, website improvements, more & better conversations on the mailing lists and other issues.

    If anything, we have revealed there is a lot of "fun" work that can be done to promote our organization. It has also shown that the SIG's activities need the attention of multiple volunteers and not just one person. Our organization has already grown and the metro area has enough technologists that it can grow much more.

    We hope to see all of those who volunteered participating in the near future as presentation managers, presenters, webmasters, installfest planners, list maintainers, sysadmins, publicists, mentors, participants in the steering committee, etc.

    The final people considered as a chair to focus the SIG's activities were:

    Craig Buchek, an author of Linux training material for Wave Technologies International, Inc.;

    Matthew Porter, a software developer at WorldWide Technologies;

    Steve Pritchard, a sysadmin at Savvis & co-founder of 3 other SIGs, and Kara Pritchard, an author of the recent Linux certification Exam Cram book and Linux Professional Institute employee.

    Matthew Porter will be the new Chair of the Linux SIG.

    This position, along with all other non-elected positions, is reviewed by the Board of Directors annually, typically after the February election.

    Sponsor of the Month

    Technisource Inc.

    Founded in 1987, Technisource has been a national provider of specialized technical personnel services, operating in 30 offices across the United States and Canada with a local office here in the St. Louis area.

    We assist companies in obtaining their technical staff on a contract, contract to direct, permanent placement, and on an outsourcing basis. Our expertise lies in all ranges of it IT industry, including client server, mainframe and web-based technologies.

    Technisource Homepage is For more information send or call Amy at (314) 576-7255.


    The trouble with being in the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat. -- Lily Tomlin

    Interesting Browsing

    Follow up: . - fairly short and comprehensive article on Linux security - Domain Registrar Rankings

    Ticket Punching Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals Linux Professional Institute

    Previous stuff: - What the Unix System Administrator Does...

    (Oracle of the pointy hair): - VNU Net: Don't be scared of Linux, says Gartner - Introducing vi - LinuxWorld: Protest draws attention to DMCA

    Book Review: Weaving the Web
    by Mike Knight

    Normally I don't pay attention to books about general web topics, but when I saw the author of this book was Tim Berners-Lee, I gave it a look. If you don't recognize the name, think "inventor of the web". The book's subtitle is "The Original Design and Ultimate Destiny of the World Wide Web by Its Inventor".

    This is not a technical manual and does not describe the features of various HTML versions, HTTP protocols, or other standards. It is more of a biography of the web and Tim's perspective on the struggle to promote it. Interpersonal and group conflicts are a major focus and it is more interesting if you know the names of the people mentioned. A constant theme is Tim's desire for the web to be bidirectional with browsers (people and the programs) able to update or comment on web pages and add links to other pages on the fly. The development of web browsers is covered, but servers are mentioned only briefly. Competing Internet protocols, such as Gopher and WAIS are also given short space. The end of the book includes Tim's vision for XML and RDF.

    This enjoyable read of 211 pages is available at the St. Louis County Library.

    The book is:
    ISBN 0062515861 (cloth), 006251587X (paper)
    STLC Call # 025.04 B525W

    There is also a 3 hr audio cassette version:
    ISBN 0694521256
    STLC Call # AUD.CAS. R 025.04 B525W

    Some links of varying relevance: - A review by Business Week: - Another review: - A 1997 Time Magazine article "THE MAN WHO INVENTED THE WEB": - Tim's personal page with a link to more info on the book: - A correlation of Internet milestones with world events:

    [ Which all reminds me of my very favorite document on the whole Internet - - As We May Think by Vannevar Bush - the Editor ]

    Even More Books
    for the Paranoid Net Citizen

    Two extremely interesting books by Neal Stephenson:

    In The Beginning... Was The Command Line, 1999 Avon Books Inc. NY, $10.00
    ISBN: 0-380-81593-1
    STLC: 005.43/S836I
    Remarkable metaphors about GUIs and Operating Systems. If you have read or plan to read The Cathedral and The Bazaar by Eric S. Raymond, this is a must read for you.

    Cryptonomicon, 1999 Avon Books Inc. NY,
    ISBN: 0-380-97346-4
    Rather good multiple parallel stories about World War II, cryptography, the Internet and government fear of eCASH. Some will find it to be unnecessarily obscene in spots. See for low tech encryption algorithm featured in book.

    Here are some books for the paranoid:

    1. Hacking Exposed by Stuart McClure, Joel Scambray & George Kurtz, 1999 Osborne/McGraw-Hill, $39.99
      ISBN: 0-07-212127-0
      STLC: 005.8/M128H
      Sub-titled as Network Security Secrets & Solutions. Covers finding, exploiting, and applying countermeasures for security holes in Unix, Linux, Windows 95/98/NT and Novell networks. Includes circumventing firewalls, buffer over-flows, back doors, root kits, Trojan horses and viruses. If your hair isn't white, it will be.

    2. Linux Firewalls by Robert L. Ziegler, 2000 New Riders, $39.99
      ISBN: 0-7357-0900-9
      STLC: N/A, It has been requested, will they buy it?

    3. Firewalls and Internet Security by William R. Cheswick and Steven M. Bellovin, 1994 Addison Wesley, $28.75
      ISBN: 0-201-63357-4
      STLC: N/A, It has been requested, will they buy it?
      Sub-titled as "Repelling the Wily Hacker". This was highly recommended in the UMSL UNIX Management class a few years ago. May now be out of print.

    The St. Louis County Library system considers requests from patrons at for items that they should acquire. Most Linux books get bought because of demand. Even though Linux is 98 percent Unix compatible, the Unix titles are less likely to be acquired without significant demand. [ That means that others should put in requests for these technical books if they are to be purchased. A lone request doesn't mean much to someone on the library staff that can't even spell Unix and thinks that it's more important to the community to buy everything on the Best Seller Lists -- editor ]

    For more information members can send for details.

    Personal Commentary
    Submitted by Almost Anyone

    The following PERSONAL COMMENTARY expresses personal opinions and SLUUG exerts no more editorial control over such content than does a public library, bookstore, or newsstand. Any opinions, advice, statements, services, offers, or other information or Content expressed herein are those of the respective author and not necessarily supported by SLUUG. SLUUG does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any content, nor its merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose.

    ...the Emacs editor is horrible, for example. While Linux is larger than
    Emacs, at least Linux has the excuse that it needs to be.

    - Linus Torvalds
    The Linux Edge
    Open Sources: Voices from the Open Source Revolution

    Special Interest Groups (SIGS)

    As our membership grows, we have had some inquiries about the possibility of having Special Interest Groups in several areas. If you are interested in starting or participating in a SIG for System Administration, Networking, C, Object Oriented Programming, a specific vendor, etc., please call Dave Mills at 230-5151, extension 103, or contact any officer of the group.

    St. Louis Unix Users Group - Linux SIG (SLUUG-LS)

    Visit the Linux SIG home page ( ) for the latest meeting details.

    Indian Trails Public Library
    8400 Delport Drive
    (at Midland)
    Follow 170: Exit Page east to North-South Rd., go left on North-South Rd. to Midland, go left on Midland one block to Delport, the Library is on your left (see map at ).

    For more information on SLUUG-LS refer to the WWW home page for the group at or contact Matthew Porter by

    Digital Alpha SIG

    The Digital Alpha SIG is for those interested in Digital UNIX and the DEC Alpha architecture. Visit the Digital Alpha SIG's home at for more information.

    St. Louis UNIX Users Group Steering Committee

    The SLUUG Steering Committee meets the Tuesday following the general 2nd Wednesday meeting at 6:00 PM in the 2nd floor training room of Daugherty Systems, One City Place in Creve Coeur. The guard can direct you to the meeting location. Anyone is welcome to attend. If you would like to become more involved in the planning of SLUUG, feel free to join us at the next Steering Committee meeting. Meetings usually last 1.5 to 2 hours.


  • Analysts International
  • Andersen Consulting
  • Bradford & Galt
  • CIBER, Inc.
  • Cypress Systems, Ltd.
  • Daugherty Systems
  • Informix Corporation
  • Maryville Data Systems, Inc.
  • O'Reilly & Associates
  • Phoenix Networks
  • Phoenix Networks
  • Renaissance Worldwide, Inc.
  • Sun Microsystems
  • Stopka & Associates
  • Sunnen Products
  • Sykes Enterprises, Inc.
  • Technisource Inc.
  • Triple-I Corporation
  • Venmar Systems, Inc.

  • The Law Offices of Rich McLennan, send

    For more information about sponsoring the St. Louis UNIX Users Group, contact Ed Wehner, send

    SLUUG on the World Wide Web

    The St. Louis UNIX Users Group maintains a WWW page at Visit us to learn more about who we are and what we do, visit other UNIX user groups' WWW pages, sign up for a SIG, or just to browse.

    SLUUG Administration is volunteer based.

    SLUUG is looking for volunteers to help with presentations, web page development, managing corporate sponsorships, and many other tasks. If you would like to help out contact Gary Meyer by


    We publish other user group meeting schedules on a reciprocal basis. If you are a member of another non-profit group, please inform them of our policy and invite them to exchange meeting information by, or call any of the SLUUG officers.


    BBS Questions Gary Meyer
    Corporate Sponsors Ed Wehner
    O'Reilly Books Dave Mills Work: (314)230-5151, extension 103
    Presentations Open Position Send info/ideas by
    Editorial team:
    Publisher Sanjiv Bhatia Home: (314)519-9272
    Work: (314)516-6520
    FAX: (314)516-5400
    Editor Stan Reichardt Home: (314)298-1183
    Steering Committee
    Gary Meyer Home: (314)781-8644
    SLUUG Secretary Rich Seibel
    SLUUG Treasurer Mike Kriz
    Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

    Linux SIG Chair Matthew Porter Home: (314)353-7988

    Submitting Articles to the SLUUG CRONicle

    If you would like to submit an article to the CRONicle of general interest to the members of the St. Louis UNIX Users Group,send The deadline for article submissions is two weeks before the next general meeting.

    SLUUG PO Box

    The St. Louis UNIX Users Group has a P.O. box. All official correspondence with SLUUG should now be sent to:

        St. Louis UNIX Users Group
        P.O. Box 411302
        Creve Coeur Post Office
        St. Louis, MO  63141-9998