R Portable Version 4.1.0 has been released and is available on the R Portable project page, https://sf.net/projects/rportable/. I ran into an error on startup that I did not have with version 4.0.5. A statement in my .Rprofile was causing the error, “cannot add USERPROFILE to the base environment”. My .Rprofile is not necessary, so I renamed it. The problem went away.
R Portable Version 4.1.0 incorporates the 4.1.0 version of R in a portableapps format.
Last Saturday I updated my virtual server from 16.04 LTS to 18.04.3 LTS. The upgrade took about an hour. It wasn’t too painful. I tried to use the maintainer’s configuration defaults wherever. Mostly it worked but I found a few problems I had to fix. The biggest problems I encountered from the upgrade were:
My web pages were showing the PHP scripts rather than executing the script. Enabling PHP 7.2 in Apache2 solved that problem.
In PHP 7.2 mcrypt is deprecated so it broke one of my applications. Since I did not set up my application to use encryption, the solution was to disable encryption in the application configuration.
Every night I send myself a PERL report. The report complained about a missing module. So I installed the missing module into PERL using CPAN.
A WordPress plugin complained about cURL was not installed. I installed php-curl using apt.
Yesterday I went to the Springdale store to purchase a 12 lb. bag of black beans. It is the only Sam’s Club store in the area with the 12 lb. bag and it is close to our church. Since I was only purchasing one item, I used the Scan and Go application to check out. A few minutes later at my mother-in-law’s house, I noticed that the receipt on my phone was for a 50 lb. bag of potatoes. I went back to the store because I thought it was a scanning error. The black beans scanned correctly so they took my information and promised to investigate.
Today I noticed that I have two receipts. The first receipt was for the beans at 08/26/18 13:21. The second receipt was for the potatoes at 08/26/18 13:25. How does this happen? If the times are correct, I was probably in the car going to my mother-in-law’s house when the potatoes receipt was posted.
One of the oddities that caught my attention was that my phone was on the checkout screen for the potatoes. Typically when a Scan and Go transaction completes, the checkout screen is replaced with the completed transaction screen. Although credit card fraud is always a possibility, this looks like a Sam’s Club oops problem.
Back in February, I ran into an interesting problem. Both my Wi-Fi and wired connections stopped working on my laptop. I was able to connect to the access point and get an IP address but was unable to ping or connect to anything. I was getting the infamous ‘limited connectivity’ error. After a day of debugging, I gave up and restored the computer from a backup. Everything worked fine until recently. This time I figured out why the Wi-Fi failed.
The Npcap/WinPcap Compatibility Problem
Until recently I was using an old version of Nmap from the February backup. Upgrading Nmap to the latest version broke my Wi-Fi. During the install process, Nmap installs its promiscuous driver, Npcap, and then says you might want to look for a newer version of the driver. So I downloaded the 0.92 version. While installing the driver, I noticed that it recommended uninstalling WinPcap. I forgot that I had WinPcap installed. At one time WinPcap was the promiscuous driver of choice for Nmap and Wireshark but it has not been updated since 2013. Npcap is supposed to be the replacement for WinPcap even though it is not stable enough to be called version 1.0. Despite my stability concerns I uninstalled WinPcap, installed the latest version of Npcap, and everything works.
How did this occur?
My best guess is that I updated Nmap from version 6.47 to 7.40 in late January. I use Nmap about once or twice a year so I probably decided to upgrade to the latest version prior to running a network test. The network connectivity problem appeared when I rebooted in February. Although the Wi-Fi problem started occurring for people in April of 2016, it does not manifest itself until Nmap 7 installs Npcap. I upgraded Nmap to test our network Wannacry vulnerabilities in May. The next time I rebooted the network connectivity problem had returned.
I found two problems that might people trying to implement SSL.
The script kept generating a message saying, “No vhost exists with servername”. for two of my sites. When I looked into my site configuration file I found that I was still using a VirtualHost section to re-direct www.wehuberconsultingllc.com to wehuberconsultingllc.com. The script was upset that I had multiple VirtualHosts for the site. If I added a ServerAlias for the www address in the first VirtualHost section and deleted the extra VirtualHost section from my vhost configuration file, the script would find the site and create the certificate.
When you are managing multiple WordPress sites I like to update the plugins via wordpress.com. The problem is that as soon as I implemented mandatory SSL for a WordPress site, Jetpack was no longer able to fetch plugin status and instead displayed the “error fetching plugins” message. After a lot of fiddling around I figured out that I could fix this problem by going to the Settings-General menu and changing the URL for the blog to https.