How to start using Git with Github as a Sysadmin

Some systems engineers and admins are reluctant to embrace version control, I aim to show it’s not a black art, and should be in the toolbox of all admins.

The simplest thing to say about using git with github is that they combine to provide tools and a place for storing your code, scripts, config files, allowing you track updates and recover previous versions.

This guide shows you how to install git on a Debian based system and how to start using it. This use case illustration is simple because everyone needs to start somewhere.

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Conditionally setting DISPLAY variables in bash

A tiny snippet of useful bash shell code today, to help with setting your DISPLAY variable if integrating Cygwin/X into your Windows environment, add it to a .bashrc for effect.

Launching X apps from the ‘Cygwin Terminal’ is smoothed as a result.

#RT Check for XWin and set DISPLAY if present.

ps -a | grep -v grep | grep /usr/bin/XWin > /dev/null


if [ “${result}” -eq “0” ] ; then

 export DISPLAY=localhost:0.0


echo “No server running, DISPLAY not set.”


Using .forward files and retaining a local copy

If your read your email on a platform able to utilise dot forward files (.forward), it’s useful to know that aside from adding a forward address to bounce mail onwards seamlessly, you can retain a copy at the original receiving host by constructing your .forward as below, where I show an excerpt from my system.

#cat .forward