Notes on Minecraft hosting

Just notes to self that I keep having to find in various documents and random Minecraft forums of varying quality of which there are a lot…

Screen stuff

I have an unused laptop which I installed Ubuntu Server on, and this is what I use to run the Minecraft server so it’s easy to manage and won’t die when I disconnect.

# Run detached in screen using dir name as screen name
screen -dmS ${PWD##*/} java -Xmx3G -XX:MaxPermSize=256M -jar server.jar nogui

# List screens
screen -ls

# Reattach to specific
screen -r name

# Reattatch to whatever (handy if just one running)
screen -raAd

# Detach (important, since Ctrl+c would shut down the server)
Ctrl+a, Ctrl+d

Minecraft server stuff

A bit cheaty, especially the last one, but sometimes you just want to play without worrying about losing what you spent way too many hours working on. I prefer a gravestone mod over the last one though, cause then dying is still an annoyance, but at least you have a chance of getting back that crazy expensive armor and the fifteen stacks of diamonds you just spent forever digging up.

# Prevent creepers and such from destroying stuff
gamerule mobGriefing false

# Don't lose stuff when dying
gamerule keepInventory true

YouTube: Play all uploads of a user

Note to self: To play all uploads of a user, start playing one of them, then add &list=UL to the URL. For example:

The playlist might look a bit weird at first, but that’s because

  • It plays from oldest to newest
  • The current playing video “tries” to be in the middle of the list
  • The list only displays x videos before and y videos after the current one, so if the user has a thousand videos, you’ll only see a handful of them in the playlist, but it does play through them all.

Of course YouTube should just have a “play all videos of this user” button, but can’t find one at the moment…

PowerShell: Read hashtable from a file

Had a file with the following kind of data.

Wanted to read this in as a hashtable so that I could use it for lookup in a script. Tried doing the following, but ended up with an array of hashtables instead of one hashtable. This is because Get-Content by default actually gives you an array of lines, which are then piped into ConvertFrom-StringData one by one.

PS> Get-Content .\hostnames.txt | ConvertFrom-StringData
PS> $names.GetType()

IsPublic IsSerial Name                                     BaseType
-------- -------- ----                                     --------
True     True     Object[]                                 System.Array

PS> $names[0].GetType()

IsPublic IsSerial Name                                     BaseType
-------- -------- ----                                     --------
True     True     Hashtable                                System.Object

Turns out it was easy to fix by adding the -raw parameter.

PS> $names = Get-Content -raw .\hostnames.txt | ConvertFrom-StringData
PS> $names.GetType()

IsPublic IsSerial Name                                     BaseType
-------- -------- ----                                     --------
True     True     Hashtable                                System.Object

PS> $names['']

PowerShell: Parse, sort, filter and add to a CSV

Made an export from Splunk containing all IP addresses who had called a method on a companies ESB servers. This gave me a large CSV with two columns, Method and IP, which I then needed to filter to remove duplicate rows. Additionally I wanted to try a reverse lookup of the address to identify what system in our environment was actually doing the call us.

Import-Csv .\requests.csv |
sort Method,IP -Unique |
select *,@{Name="Host";Expression={[Net.Dns]::GetHostEntry($_.IP).HostName}}
Export-Csv .\requests-filtered.csv

Most lines should be self-explanatory, but the neat bit is the select statement. I use the * to select all existing properties, and then I use a nutty syntax I learned today to add a calculated property.

Pretty neat. Worked great, with the exception that every IP was resolvable, but’s the fault of the DNS server at the company… :)

Change network profile name and type in Windows 8

The Network and Sharing Center in Windows 8 is kind of useless in many ways. There is for example no way to change the name, so you might be stuck with a dumb “Network 3″ identity. There’s also no way to change between the Public and Private types if you want to change what you selected when you initially connected to the network.

So, on your own responsibility, here’s where to find those profiles in the Registry Editor.

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\Windows NT \CurrentVersion \NetworkList \Profiles

Of particular note is the ProfileName and the Category. The last one can have the following values:





Use WinMerge for comparing archives with TortoiseSVN

I really like the Diff Viewer that comes with TortoiseSVN, but from what I can gather it doesn’t seem to support anything but text files, which is fair enough, but I need to compare archives as well. Zip and Jar files in particular.

WinMerge supports that, and can be integrated with TortoiseSVN very easily right through its installer. But I prefer the diff viewer that comes with TortoiseSVN and the archive diff isn’t recursive by default, so I decided to set it up manually.

  1. Install WinMerge
    (without the automagic TortoiseSVN integration)

  2. Install the WinMerge 7-zip plugin for archive support
    (I couldn’t get the shared install to work, so had to use the application specific one)

  3. Open TortoiseSVN Settings, Diff Viewer, Advanced
  4. Add rows with extension set to .zip, .jar and whatever archives you want WinMerge to handle and set external program to the following:
    C:\Program Files (x86)\WinMerge\WinMergeU.exe /r /x /e /u /dl %bname /dr %yname %base %mine

If I now for example ask TortoiseSVN for a Diff with previous version of a jar file, I get WinMerge with a recursive comparison of the archive contents. I also recommend that you deselect Show Identical Items under View.

With a hint of Social Ineptitude