Binary Options OTC Trading : Your Cheat-Sheet to Making

Spread decisions tree

I put together a little cheat sheet of how I think about which trade structure I use for what. This is obviously only covering a small portion of the trade universe but I thought it would be helpful to those a little overwhelmed with the choice within an options chain.
The key here is keeping things simple. Knowing what a trade is expressing and how that applies to what you think/hope will happen. That main point is not wasting money with sloppy call or put purchases, and taking what the options market is giving you. Keep it simple, use the expected move and get the universe of trades closer to the binary decisions we make when we trade stock.
Here's the full flowchart, bullish, bearish and neutral.
You'll notice that it organizes by short premium in the middle and lower probability long premium trades as it gets to the edges (duh) but what I think is helpful is how even on the long premium trades it accounts for selling as much premium as possible to finance that view. (or at least an easier way to think about it)
The focus is on 4 common (defined risk, multi-leg) options trades. Call spreads, put spreads, butterflies and condors and when to use them based on your expectations versus the crowd's. This is by no means an exhaustive list of potential trades. But these are a great starting point for those looking to use some smarter trade structures to express directional views. Strikes can of course be adjusted to slightly alter each trade. For instance, a call spread to the expected move can be set to be more in the money to get the breakeven in line with the stock, creating something quite similar to a stock alternative.
And as a decision tree on each:
Bullish
Bearish
Neutral
Full post here where I go through some examples in CRM and ADBE over on OptionsEye. Let me know if you have any questions or any other ideas of trades you like in similar situations.
submitted by cclagator to options [link] [comments]

A cheat sheet of spreads and when to use them.

A cheat sheet of spreads and when to use them.
I put together a little cheat sheet of how I think about which trade for which occasion, bullish, bearish neutral and by how much. This is obviously only covering a small portion of the trade universe but I thought it would be helpful to those a little overwhelmed with the choice within an options chain.
The key here is keeping things simple. Knowing what a trade is expressing and how that applies to what you think/hope will happen. That main point is not wasting money with sloppy call or put purchases, and taking what the options market is giving you. Keep it simple and get the universe of trades closer to the binary decisions we make when we trade stock so we can move quickly and know what we just did, and why.
The focus is on 4 common (defined risk, multi-leg) options trades. Call spreads, put spreads, butterflies and condors and when to use them based on your expectations versus the crowd's. This is by no means an exhaustive list of potential trades. But these are a great starting point for those looking to use some smarter trade structures to express directional views. Strikes can of course be adjusted to slightly alter each trade. For instance, a call spread to the expected move can be set to be more in the money to get the breakeven in line with the stock, creating something quite similar to a stock alternative.

https://preview.redd.it/haqn5tzsrw251.png?width=631&format=png&auto=webp&s=1416f69209e30eb120002dcc657e5e19e8c21e1b
And as a decision tree on each:

https://preview.redd.it/vo3ybzlwyp251.png?width=428&format=png&auto=webp&s=fef09d2993d6c7a0495680eb58e34294be955cea

https://preview.redd.it/2zao2xnxyp251.png?width=538&format=png&auto=webp&s=f938e0dd05bec87462442fd4c788ddb874f4fbc4

https://preview.redd.it/b2s5f8yyyp251.png?width=423&format=png&auto=webp&s=1e887bebd500fa1e5db591f1da2ae4b19e06b88f
Full post here where I go through some examples in CRM and ADBE. Let me know if you have any questions or any other ideas of trades you like in similar situations.
https://www.optionseye.com/eye-on-education-simplifying-the-choice-of-trades-for-directional-views/
submitted by cclagator to options_spreads [link] [comments]

Tools & Info for Sysadmins - Cheat Sheet Collection, Keyboard Shortcuts, Network Mapper & More

Hi sysadmin,
Each week I thought I'd post these SysAdmin tools, tips, tutorials etc.
To make sure I'm following the rules of sysadmin, rather than link directly to our website for sign up for the weekly email I'm experimenting with reddit ads so:
You can sign up to get this in your inbox each week (with extras) by following this link.
Here are the most-interesting items that have come across our desks, laptops and phones this week. As always, EveryCloud has no known affiliation with any of these unless we explicitly state otherwise.
** We're looking to include fantastic podcasts for IT Pros, SysAdmins and MSPs in IT Pro Tuesday. Please leave a comment with your favorite(s) and we'll be featuring them over the following weeks.

Cheat Sheets
PacketLife Cheat Sheets is a miscellaneous collection of helpful cheat sheets. A fantastic resource pointed out by heroz0r, who specifically appreciates the featured cheat sheets for Wireshark, IPv4 subnetting and network protocols like BGP, EIGRP, OSPF etc.

A Free Tool
Nmap (Network Mapper) is an open-source utility for network discovery and security auditing. Can be useful for network inventory, managing service upgrade schedules and monitoring host or service uptime. Uses raw IP packets in novel ways to determine what hosts are available on the network, what services they offer, what OS versions they're running, what type of packet filters/firewalls are in use and much more. Runs on all major operating systems, and official binary packages are available for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X. Nmap suite includes an advanced GUI and results viewer; a flexible data transfer, redirection and debugging tool; a utility for comparing scan results and a packet generation and response analysis tool. Another suggestion from heroz0r, who suggests it as an "alternative to the PingTools, AngryIPScanner, etc."

A Tip
Thanks go to zeroibis, boli99 and Krejar for these keyboard shortcuts:

Another Free Tool
Specops Password Auditor scans your Active Directory to identify password-related vulnerabilities. Generates multiple interactive reports containing user and password policy information. Recommended by SYSOX, who explains: "It showed me a few accounts in my AD that had an attribute set to let them bypass the password policy and have a blank password. I was able to export the accounts to a txt file and run a powershell to resolve this... whole process took under 20 mins."

Another Tip
Some Powershell shortcuts, also compliments of heroz0r:

Have a fantastic week and as usual, let me know any comments or suggestions.
u/crispyducks
Enjoy.
submitted by crispyducks to sysadmin [link] [comments]

Looking for practice? Want to expand your AHK knowledge? I got you covered.

I made a reply a while ago to Swaggurttt (could you give us an update of how things have been going?)
He wanted to learn more about AHK. So I provided him a list of new things to learn past just "press button > send keys".
Hopefully, some people reading will take this opportunity to branch out and learn some new things that AHK is capable of. From stepping into the aesthetically pleasing world of GUIs to using RegEx to become a string manipulating master. From braving the cryptic DllCall() command that lets you embrace code from other files thus making your scripts much more robust and useful, to having a whole slew of problems and puzzles that will test your ability to utilize AHK's capabilities.

Practice, Problems, and Challenges - It's like fun homework

Let's start with 4 websites that will give you tons of practice. From easy to insanely difficult. Between these 4 sites, you should have more things to do than you could ever finish.
Code Abbey
The site I've spent the most time on. From the easiest "add two variables" all the way to "write an AI". It's a good place to learn core programming skills and develop logic. Parsing through data, calculating variables, using arrays, etc...
Funny thing is this website is the reason I'm making this post. It has been a while since I used this site and I couldn't remember the address. So I looked up this post and...here we are!
Rosetta Code
Another good site, though I like Code Abbey's layout, sorting, and input/output method more. Rosetta has its own pros, like showing you solutions in TONS of different languages. Very helpful if you're familiar with other programming languages.
Code Chef
This was suggested to me a while ago and I've only done a couple of problems. Not because it's a bad site, but because I just haven't had the time to try and nuke the list. I figured it was worth including.
Those 3 should keep you busy for quite some time. Plus...
The AHK Subreddit
This subreddit is a treasure trove of problems! I used to spend a ton of time just trying other people's problems, coming up with my own solutions, and comparing what I come up with to others. You can learn a TON doing it this way. And comparing answers afterward only teaches you newer and better ways of doing things. Consider the unbelievable amount of backlogged posts you can go through. Years and years worth.

How about some suggestions for parts of AHK to learn?

RegEx (Regular Expressions) - Master of Strings

This is a mini-language for manipulating strings. Learn it! If there's a discernible pattern to what you're looking for, you definitely can write a RegEx to find it. See: RegExMatch and RegExReplace. Bonus: It should be noted that RegEx is its own little mini-language with its own rules and syntax. BUT, once you learn it, you now know it for almost every other programming language (minus some discrepancies between flavors).
RegEx Resources:

COMs - Letting you interface with other shit one command at a time!

COMs are pretty amazing. They let you interact with lots of different things on windows. Microsoft lets you access things like Internet Explorer, Excel, Word, Access, (literally the entire office suite), shell, WIN HTTP, VBScript, etc... It lets you use those programs directly from AHK. This increases reliability near infinitesimally compared to blind clicking and typing. You can web scrape like a boss using the IE COM. You can manipulate Excel spreadsheets, get data from them, update them, and whatever else you want. COMs are handy.
Resources:
There are also quite a few videos on YouTube that you can also check out.

GUIs - I feel pretty. Oh so pretty....

Learn to make and manipulate Graphical User Interfaces or GUIs. When you want user-friendly interaction with the users of your code, GUIs can be the perfect answer. A non-programmer isn't going to want to run scripts with switches or open up .ahk file or edit code to change settings. Enter the GUI!
The "Read This Before Posting!" stickied tutorial post has some good WYSIWYG suggestions. And it stands for What You See Is What You Get...that's really what they're called. Personally, I'm a fan of GUI Creator by Maestrith.
You'll spend a LOT of time trying to learn all the different things GUIs can do.
The AHK docs are the go-to for this stuff. Here are the pages you'll be visiting quite often:
I'd like to add a neat method I've started doing for tracking elements because it used to be a struggle for me. When I create a GUI, I like to keep everything inside of functions and I really don't want to create global variables for everything. I find myself making a single global Object in the AES. Then, whenever I create a GUI element, I always add the hwnd option to it and then immediately save that HWND to the array. Plus, you can logically name it so it's much easier to recall.
Example:
Global guiHwnd := {} NewGUI() MsgBox, % "Cancel Btn: " guiHwnd.CancelBtn "`nOK Btn: " guiHwnd.OKBtn ExitApp NewGUI(){ Gui, New Gui, Add, Button, hwndBtn gOKBtn, OK guiHwnd.okBtn := btn Gui, Add, Button, hwndBtn gCancelBtn, Cancel guiHwnd.cancelBtn := btn Gui, Show Return } 
GUIs are an excellent segue into DllCalls. Why? Because DllCall can let you fine-tune a GUI.

DllCall - Rule #1 of coding: Don't reinvent the wheel!

One thing we learn real quick in programming is you don't rewrite code that's already been created and thoroughly tested. It's a waste of time! That's why people will bundle up their code into these neat packages called DLLs (Dynamic Link Libraries) and then publish them for others to use. These let you call commands and functions outside of the native AHK language. Meaning you can interact with Window's internal functions directly from your script! This opens up a TON of possibilities for any script and unlocks some of the restrictions that come with AHK. Like changing things about GUIs that AHK doesn't have an option for. Or getting info directly from the operating system because we don't have an AHK command or function created to do so.
It's not just limited to Windows functions. It can access any DLL. As long as you know how to interface with it.
This MSDN link has a top-level link to all of the core things you need to learn about DLLCalling to windows.

GDI+ - Giving you the ability to create and manipulate graphics on the Windows level

GDI is Window's Graphics Device Interface. A user named Tic (Tariq Porter) wrote GDI+ for AHK. It handles ALL the DllCalls you need to make to the GDI to manipulate graphics, draw shapes and objects, import pictures, etc. You know all the stuff you can do in Paint? You can do ALL that anywhere at any time on the screen using AHK & GDIP. Without having to ever load Paint. Please note the GDI+ repo also includes tutorials on how to use the library. It doesn't cover everything quite as in-depth as I'd like it to, but the examples will give you plenty to go off of.
Why are you still reading this? You should have gotten distracted way up top and started trying stuff on Code Abbey!
OK, one challenge I always like to give people.
Recreate the Window's calculator. And make it work exactly the same. Initially, it sounds easy! But, duplicating the functionality AND the aesthetics can be pretty tricky. This is actually a tough challenge with lots of parts. You'll have to make a GUI that looks as close as possible to calc.exe. Make the display function the same, make every button work correctly, calculations should work, memory buttons should function, etc. Don't forget to make an icon for it and also to disable the AHK system tray icon, just like the real thing. Oh! And recreate the menu, too. This will give you practice on TONS of different aspects. It's complex enough to be challenging but not so complex no one would ever want to do it.
If you can get this done and want to extend things further, try making the scientific version of the calculator!! There's a real challenge. The extra advanced math buttons each have to work correctly.
Go, try, learn. If you get stuck, come back to the sub and ask for help. Or hit up the Discord crew. While you're waiting for an answer, you can always go through some of the current questions on the sub.
I hope you guys enjoy this post.
submitted by GroggyOtter to AutoHotkey [link] [comments]

My 1 month of OpenSUSE as an Arch user

For me, the appeal of openSUSE Tumbleweed was the same appeal as Manjaro compared to Arch: an installer and stability. Manjaro in my experience however was not very stable. All in all, openSUSE is a very solid distro that I will use going forward, replacing my use of Arch/Manjaro.

Pros

  1. The installer is 10/10. It is better than other installers that simply get the job done. It is intuitive and easy to use and yet highly customizable. It has a ridiculous amount of options (e.g. disable the firewall, disable CPU mitigations, IO scheduler selection, GRUB boot-time options, enable ssh, etc) to configure your system before even your first boot. All packages that will be installed as part of the distro install are listed and you can deselect packages (or package categories) that you do not want. This makes the install process very modular so that it does not feel bloated/enterprisey. It is incredibly easy to do a minimal KDE install for instance.
  2. Btrfs snapshots guarantee stability because they can be used to roll back your system if the system breaks. The trade-off is that btrfs cleaner (automated btrfs balance) runs periodically in the background.
  3. There is no expectation to read news bulletins. Your system does not need to be continuously updated i.e. annual updates will work without breaking your system.
  4. Optional to use, yast takes almost no disk space and is easier to use than editing config files for configuring your system.

Must dos after an install

  1. By default, zypper pulls in "recommended packages" when you install a package. These are like the optional dependencies in Arch. Unless you have ample hard disk waste to space, I recommend disabling the recommended packages by setting solver.onlyRequires = true inside /etc/zypp/zypp.conf`.
  2. By default, you use the openSUSE build service by going to the website here. I recommend using opi instead which is sort of the OBS equivalent of an AUR helper. Install it with zypper install opi. Alternatively, use zyp. Packages from OBS are installed like so: opi PACKAGE.
  3. By default, openSUSE doesn't come installed with proprietary codecs like H.264. If you want to watch Twitch for example, you can install these codecs by running opi codecs.

Cons

  1. The opensuse wiki is less comprehensive than the arch wiki and is worse quality. Having said that, the installer usually sets things up so that you don't need a wiki anyway and you can still refer to the arch wiki.
  2. If you use the proprietary nvidia drivers, there is an interval of time where your system can break if you update after openSUSE releases a new kernel update but before NVidia updates their Tumbleweed repos to match the new kernel version. There should be a mechanism to hold back a kernel update if nvidia is installed so that a break never occurs. This would have been a deal-breaker for me if it weren't for the btrfs snapshots.
  3. After a kernel update, I had to manually rebuild the virtualbox host kernel module using this. DKMS should be automatically used so that this is not necessary.

AUR vs OBS

Unlike the AUR where the packages are centralized on one server, the OBS hosts users' custom software repositories. This means that a software such as the micro text editor has 4 different repos/providers in the OBS. This extra redundancy means that if one package is broken, you can simply switch to a different repo. This is a big issue in the AUR where if the AUR package is broken, you're out of luck and you have to manually debug the PKGBUILD In addition, because we are dealing with software repositories rather than source recipe files, there is no lengthy build process - you just install the binaries which also means that there is no lengthy source build that has the potential to break. The downside is that since there is not one central AUR server, you have to manage repositories (annoying to keep track of which repos are for which packages). The AUR and OBS seem to be equivalent in terms of the numbers of packages.

Zypper Cheat Sheet

Search for package: zypper search PACKAGE Install package: zypper install PACKAGE Remove package: zypper remove -u PACKAGE (-u flag is to remove dependencies) Update system: zypper dup List orphan packages: zypper packages --orphaned List unneeded packages: zypper packages --unneeded Clean up local cache: zypper clean --all 
Orphan packages are packages where their repo has been removed. Unneeded packages are packages that were not explicitly installed and are not used as dependencies for other packages.
submitted by some_random_guy_5345 to openSUSE [link] [comments]

Tools & Info for MSPs - Cheat Sheet Collection, Keyboard Shortcuts, Network Mapper & More

Hello msp,
Each week we're updating the full list on our website here. Enjoy.
But on with this week's tools...! Here are the most-interesting items that have come across our desks, laptops and phones this week. As always, EveryCloud has no known affiliation with any of these unless we explicitly state otherwise.
** We're looking to include more tips from IT Pros, SysAdmins and MSPs in IT Pro Tuesday. This could be command line, shortcuts, process, security, whatever—those little tricks you've discovered that made you think "where have you been all my life?" Please leave a comment with your favorite tip(s) and we'll be featuring them over the following weeks. **

Cheat Sheets
PacketLife Cheat Sheets is a miscellaneous collection of helpful cheat sheets. A fantastic resource pointed out by heroz0r, who specifically appreciates the featured cheat sheets for Wireshark, IPv4 subnetting and network protocols like BGP, EIGRP, OSPF etc.

A Free Tool
Nmap (Network Mapper) is an open-source utility for network discovery and security auditing. Can be useful for network inventory, managing service upgrade schedules and monitoring host or service uptime. Uses raw IP packets in novel ways to determine what hosts are available on the network, what services they offer, what OS versions they're running, what type of packet filters/firewalls are in use and much more. Runs on all major operating systems, and official binary packages are available for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X. Nmap suite includes an advanced GUI and results viewer; a flexible data transfer, redirection and debugging tool; a utility for comparing scan results and a packet generation and response analysis tool. Another suggestion from heroz0r, who suggests it as an "alternative to the PingTools, AngryIPScanner, etc."

A Tip
Thanks go to zeroibis, boli99 and Krejar for these keyboard shortcuts:

Another Free Tool
Specops Password Auditor scans your Active Directory to identify password-related vulnerabilities. Generates multiple interactive reports containing user and password policy information. Recommended by SYSOX, who explains: "It showed me a few accounts in my AD that had an attribute set to let them bypass the password policy and have a blank password. I was able to export the accounts to a txt file and run a powershell to resolve this... whole process took under 20 mins."

Another Tip
Some Powershell shortcuts, also compliments of heroz0r:

P.S. Bonus Free Tools
Get this week's bonus tools here!

Have a fantastic week and as usual, let me know any comments.
Graham | CEO | EveryCloud
Fyi - I've set up a subreddit /itprotuesday, where we feature / encourage posts of some additional tools, tips etc. throughout the week. Pop over and subscribe if you’re interested.
submitted by crispyducks to msp [link] [comments]

IT Pro Tuesday #78 - Cheat Sheet Collection, Keyboard Shortcuts, Network Mapper & More

Hello ITProTuesday,
We're looking for fantastic IT-related podcasts to share with the community. Please reply to the email or leave a comment with your favorites, and we'll be featuring them in the coming weeks.
And remember you can always find the full list on our website here. Enjoy.
But on with this week's tools...! Here are the most-interesting items that have come across our desks, laptops, and phones this week. As always, EveryCloud has no known affiliation with any of these unless we explicitly state otherwise.
Cheat Sheets
PacketLife Cheat Sheets is a miscellaneous collection of helpful cheat sheets. A fantastic resource pointed out by heroz0r, who specifically appreciates the featured cheat sheets for Wireshark, IPv4 subnetting and network protocols like BGP, EIGRP, OSPF etc.

A Free Tool
Nmap (Network Mapper) is an open-source utility for network discovery and security auditing. Can be useful for network inventory, managing service upgrade schedules and monitoring host or service uptime. Uses raw IP packets in novel ways to determine what hosts are available on the network, what services they offer, what OS versions they're running, what type of packet filters/firewalls are in use and much more. Runs on all major operating systems, and official binary packages are available for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X. Nmap suite includes an advanced GUI and results viewer; a flexible data transfer, redirection and debugging tool; a utility for comparing scan results and a packet generation and response analysis tool. Another suggestion from heroz0r, who suggests it as an "alternative to the PingTools, AngryIPScanner, etc."

A Tip
Thanks go to zeroibis, boli99 and Krejar for these keyboard shortcuts:

Another Free Tool
Specops Password Auditor scans your Active Directory to identify password-related vulnerabilities. Generates multiple interactive reports containing user and password policy information. Recommended by SYSOX, who explains: "It showed me a few accounts in my AD that had an attribute set to let them bypass the password policy and have a blank password. I was able to export the accounts to a txt file and run a powershell to resolve this... whole process took under 20 mins."

Another Tip
Some Powershell shortcuts, also compliments of heroz0r:

P.S. Bonus Free Tools
Get this week's bonus tools by visiting the IT Pro Tuesday blog!
Have a fantastic week and as usual, let me know any comments.
Graham | CEO | EveryCloud
submitted by crispyducks to ITProTuesday [link] [comments]

Here is my library of Shortcuts I’ve collected so far over time. (This was requested by a few people on my last post!)

You guys have NO IDEA how long this actually took out of my own spare time to create this post. It was a long and painful process of typing out each and every Shortcut name I have, copy/pasting the shortcut iCloud/RoutineHub links to download the shortcuts FOR YOU GUYS TO ENJOY! So ehh...please enjoy this long post of my full shortcuts collection as of this day. 😫
Be sure to check out this post I made yesterday morning for an idea as to why I made this new post. Here is my library of Shortcuts I’ve collected so far...
I will try my best to update the iCloud links for shortcuts that have been updated via UpdateKit.
Here is the list. ⬇️
Category — ALL THE GIFs! ⬇️
ALL THE GIFs! (My Shortcut)! - This is the RoutineHub link! The best GIF tools...All-in-One shortcut!
Category — Text Manipulation ⬇️
My Clipboard - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/704
Clipboard Manager - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/245
Text Tools - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2153
Text Effects - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/551
ASCII Clipboard - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/25
ndsıdǝdoʍn ʇǝxʇ - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/581
Spam - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/418
SpamBotiOS - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1677
iMessage Tools - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1572
iSmS - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/771
Emoji Spam - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1671
Advanced Password Generator - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1601
Base64 Encode-Decode - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1232
SuperEncode - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1504
SuperDecode - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1505
Binary Translator - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/625
Morse Code - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/774
Category —> Photo Manipulation ⬇️
Blur Image - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1697
Pixelate™️ - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1141
Invert Image - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1629
PhotoCollage Pro - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/759
Extend - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1737
Exif Details - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/913
Instagram Swipe Panorama - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1508
Tweet Generator - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1045
Wants To Know Your Location Meme Generator - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1135
Airdrop Random Meme - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/237
Category —> u/JonathanSetzer ⬇️
iTweak - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1334
Cydia Alternatives iTweak - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2053
Update iTweak
iTweak Jailbreak Tools
iTweak Settings
iVideo - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1294
Category —> Web Browsing Tweaks ⬇️
Open in Chrome - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/421
Shorten URL - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/40
Expand URL
AdBlock - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1640
Request Desktop Site - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1356
Console - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/336
SafariMastr - RoutineHub links: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1292 (English) & https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2215 (Spanish)
Safari Dark Mode
Category —> Jailbreak & Rootless Jailbreak! (Note: All are RoutineHub links in this category!) ⬇️
iOS 12 Jailbreak — This is the #1 full fledged iOS 12 Jailbreak Shortcut.
iOS 12 Rootless Jailbreak & Tweaks — Install Rootless Jailbreak & Tweaks.
Install Filza and Appdatamanager — This shortcuts installs and fixes Filza and AppdataManager.
Filza & App Manager Installer — Installs TiGi Software for Rootless JB.
RootlessJB Tweak PatcheInstaller — Download and Patch RootlessJB tweaks and themes with Shortcuts.
RootlessJB DPKG Manager — Manage and Install RootlessJB tweaks using Shortcuts App.
RootlessJB SSH Commands
One Click Unc0ver Jailbreak — Install unc0ver with only one click.
RootlessRespring — Respring with the touch of a button.
Jailbreak Your Device — Install jailbreaks for free from your iDevice faster than a blink. IOS 8-12.
Install Sileo on Unc0ver | iOS 12 — Installs Sileo on iOS 12 for Unc0ver.
Category —> Fortnite (Cancer) ⬇️
Fortnite Helper - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1735 — Lots of Fortnite tools at the press of a few buttons!
Fortnite PC Stat Tracker - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2251 — Search up any PC Stats instantly!
Fortnite Mobile Stat Tracker - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2012 — Get your Switch and Mobile Stats easily!
Random Fortnite Drop Location And Cheat Sheets - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1177 — The shortcut gives a random Fortnite location to land at. it then send you notification reminding you to thank the bus driver and opens Fortnite. Option To View ALL Weekly Challenge Cheat Sheets From ALL Seasons.
Fortnite Gun Sounds
Category —> MediaKit! (Note: All are RoutineHub links in this category!) ⬇️
MediaKit — Showcase your Shortcuts like a Pro.
MediaKit Badges — Create Badges to brand your Shortcuts.
MediaKit Collages — Combine and assort your Mockups.
MediaKit iPad Mockups — Create Mockups from 34 iPad Frames.
MediaKit iPhone Mockups — Create Mockups from 50 iPhone Frames.
MediaKit Banners — Create Banners to introduce your Shortcuts.
Category —> Export/Download Social Media Comments to CSV/Excel! (Note: All are RoutineHub links in this category!) ⬇️
Export / Download Instagram Comments to CSV / Excel — A shortcut that exports comments from an Instagram post to a CSV or Excel.
Export / Download Facebook Comments to CSV / Excel — A shortcut that exports comments from an Facebook post to a CSV or Excel.
Export / Download Twitter Comments to CSV / Excel — A shortcut that exports comments, followers, tweets from a Twitter post to a CSV or Excel.
Category —> Snapshot Journal Shortcuts ⬇️
There's too much to link for this category. Just check out this user's RoutineHub profile page instead! Here: Mralexhay's RoutineHub profile 😆
Category —> Bear Diary ⬇️
Check this user's RoutineHub profile page for these shortcuts! Here: Banaslee's RoutineHub profile 😆
Category —> Necessities ⬇️
Water Eject - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/571 THIS IS THE MOST POPULAR SHORTCUT ON ROUTINEHUB! 😆
Shortcut Sites - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/385
DependKit - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/849
BundleKit - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/830
BkInstaller - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/829
Update Checker - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1118
UpdateKit - https://www.mikebeas.com/updatekit/
UpdateHub - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2066
Backup Shortcuts To iCloud - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/969
Shortcut Inspector & Shortcut Report - View this post: Shortcut Inspector & Shortcut Reporter
Category —> JSON Parsing (Example Shortcuts) ⬇️
Basic JSON Parsing
Advanced JSON Parser
Note: These two JSON Parsing Shortcuts can also be found here: Parsing JSON
Uncategorized/others from here on down. (Post in progress!!) ⬇️
Total Weather by Siri - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1525
Burst to Video - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1174
Convert to Audio - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/515
Play and Shuffle - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/20
Search Song Lyrics - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/24
Scan QR or Barcode v2 - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1262
Item Lookup v2 - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/391 (I can’t find the v2 link of this shortcut, so I recommend to just use my iCloud download link instead!)
Social Media Downloader - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/38
Ultimate Downloader - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/368
Download Video - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/112
Network Tool - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1206
Add To Home Screen - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/607
Measurement Converter - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1556
Apple Logo Wallpapers - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/541
Quick Icon Maker - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1090
No Caller ID - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/142
MyFreeApps - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/1423
AppValley++ - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/780
Reverse IP Lookup - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/295
Ultimate Control Centre - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2096
PwnedWord - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/2217
All-in-One Utilities - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/124
All-in-One Helper - RoutineHub link: https://routinehub.co/shortcut/896
Active Shooter <——— RoutineHub link I hope nobody has to use this shortcut EVER! I don’t have this shortcut myself, but thought to list it here for anyone that may feel a little bit safer if it can be a possible life saver to anyone in a bad situation.
Category —> Shortcuts I could not find a RoutineHub link for! Note: These shortcut links in this category are only iCloud links! (If anyone can find me any alternative links for these shortcuts down below from this point on, please link it in comments and I’ll gladly update this post!) ⬇️
Check If Email Address Has Been Pwned
Custom Siri
Encode + Decode 1.1
Extract All Files from Archive
Extract Individual Files from Zip Archive
Generate Password
Google Reverse Image Search
Play Playlist
Send DoS
Share All My Shortcuts
Share Photos
Shortcuts Updater
Shortcuts Utilities
Translate Text
Unicode Font Variants
Unicode Font Variants 1.2.1
Zip and Share
Note: There are 130 Siri Shortcuts listed here in total. **(As of 3/21/2019) These are the shortcuts from my collection that I’ve found over time of me using Siri Shortcuts. You can visit this site to search for more awesome Siri Shortcuts to download: RoutineHub**
Enjoy. If you’re an owner of any of these shortcuts in this list, be sure to comment which one/s and if you’d like me to give credits to you beside your shortcut name/s. 😋
submitted by Silentoplayz to shortcuts [link] [comments]

Money Diary: $125K salary in NYC

Occupation: Senior Data Analyst
Industry: Media
Age: 32
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Salary: $125,000 + discretionary annual bonus
Paycheck Amount (Weekly): $1,445
Gender Identity: Non-Binary (AFAB - generally presenting as a woman)
Monthly Expenses (my portion)
Rent: $1,100
Transit: $80 (pre-tax)
Utilities: $50-80 (varies by time of year)
Internet: $0 (spouse pays)
Phone: $0 (spouse pays)
Gym: $27
Therapy: $700 (will go down once deductible is hit)
Health/Dental/Vision Insurance + FSA: $690 (pre-tax: I cover both of us)
Renters’ & Non-Owner Car Insurance: $0 (spouse pays)
401(k): $0 (awaiting eligibility - my company gives 2% match, so minimum will be 4%. It will most likely be a much higher percentage once my spouse starts work and I can stop paying benefits.)
Netflix: $0 (spouse pays)
Spotify: $0 (spouse pays)
Hulu+: $44.99
Student Loans: $300
Savings Accounts (Emergency, Personal Care/Misc, Annual Renewals, Travel & Gifts): $1280 (my portion)
Other Debt Payments (we have some 0% credit cards and built a payment schedule accordingly): $860 (my portion)
Investments: ~$25 (I use Acorns, a spare change investing app, to invest a modest amount a little at a time. My brokerage activities are severely limited due to my spouse’s occupation, so this is one of the few ways I can invest without a fancier, more expensive account.)
Quick Note on Income & Expenses: I am married, switched jobs about a month ago, and my spouse is transitioning to a new job (at a new company) in the next few weeks. We are moving to a more jointly-allocated model, as our incomes will be now more equal (excluding bonuses). This diary is based on our current situation, which is more individualized (I pay some bills, SO pays others) with a split of joint discretionary expenses. Maybe I’ll do another MD once we’re fully on the new system.

Day One

7:30 a.m. — This week starts with a chiropractor appointment for some chronic back issues. I wake up, quickly get myself together, and get ready to head out.
8:00 a.m. — After realizing the subway will take almost an hour to get there (shout out to train delays and long walks), I order a shared Lyft. $16.21
8:30 a.m. — Turns out my options were either be quite a bit early or be late. I pop in somewhere nearby for a cold brew to wake up and kill a few minutes. $5.10
9:30 a.m. — I finish at the chiropractor and pay. This is my first visit, so it’s a bit more than the normal cost. Out of network seems to be pretty common for specialists in NYC, so I’m used to the “pay and get reimbursed” model. $149
9:45 a.m. — I decide to work from home for the rest of the day and don’t have much on my plate, so I hop the subway back. $2.75
10:30 a.m. — I exit the subway and walk the 10 blocks or so back to my apartment. On the way, I stop at the grocery store for a gallon jug of water (post-treatment hydration motivation), some kombucha, and a Mexican Coca-Cola (treats). $6.24
1:30 p.m. — I’ve been using intermittent fasting to help my snacking habits, so I take a work break and end my fast with some grilled chicken salad I meal prepped previously. I enjoy the soda I bought earlier with lunch and get back to work.
5:15 p.m. — I finish my work a little early and decide to watch a couple of episodes of The Good Fight. I pay for the modest subscription to CBS All Access (which is on sale), which I set a reminder to cancel within the next month. It works out to be cheaper than renting an episode or a season from Amazon. $2.99
7:00 p.m. — My SO gets home and we discuss dinner. I decide I’m not especially hungry, so I make some quick scrambled egg whites with a Laughing Cow wedge and some frozen veggies.
8:00 p.m. — I freshen up and head out to my weekly therapy appointment, which requires a subway ride. $2.75
9:45 p.m. — I finish my appointment and start to make the journey home. The office bills my insurance and invoices me after processing, so I don’t have any payments this week. I usually walk a few blocks longer to the express stop because of nightly service changes (and also it clears my head). I reach the subway and hop on the train. $2.75
11:00 p.m. — After a few train delays and service switches, I finally get back to Brooklyn. I finish my podcast episode as I get ready to head to bed.
Daily Total: $187.79

Day Two

8 a.m. — I wake up and get ready for work. Breakfast is the meal I typically skip, so it’ll be coffee when I get into the office.
9 a.m. — I grab all of my stuff and head out the door. I hop on the subway and head into the office. I pay per ride because with how often I work remotely, the unlimited card is not worth it. $2.75
9:45 a.m. — My commute in is quick today, and I stop at the office kitchen to pour myself some iced coffee and put away my packed food. I brought another grilled chicken salad and some cottage cheese with frozen strawberries.
11:45 a.m. — I take a walk with a friend while he grabs salad at Sweetgreen. We catch up on office gossip as we move around the neighborhood. I eat my salad at my desk when we get back.
1 p.m. — It’s a light day of work, so I do some administrative tasks. I have a motorcycle permit with pipe dreams of owning a Vespa someday, so I decide that learning to ride on the street with an electric scooter is a good place to start. I end up signing up for a Revel account (local scooter-share) and book a free starter lesson. $20.69
3 p.m. — I eat my cottage cheese at my desk and grab a seltzer - the free snacks at work are a godsend. While I’m snacking I pay our gas bill. $20.93
5:45 p.m. — I take advantage of the light week and head out a bit early to meet an old colleague for catch-up drinks. I grab a Clif bar from the office pantry and hop on the subway. $2.75
8:15 p.m. — After a few beers, we realize we unwittingly ended up at trivia night and decide to stick around to play. This is going to be a longer night than I expected, but here we are.
11:00pm: We go to settle up, and my friend graciously covers the tab as a thank you for some advice I gave. I hazily wandered to McDonald’s for some chicken nuggets and fries and got a Lyft the rest of the way home, where I promptly pass out. $7.28 for food + $3.15 for the cab
Daily Total: $57.55

Day Three

4 a.m. — I wake up feeling the full weight of my choices. After realizing what time it is, I head to the kitchen, mix up some seltzer and a Nuun tablet, and use it to chase a Dramamine. I then try to fall back asleep with moderate success.
9 a.m. — I had already planned to work from home today, so I squint at my phone and check my emails in bed. What I planned to get done is still in a holding pattern with some folks who need to provide feedback, so I get yet another easy day.
1 p.m. — After fielding some questions and editing a few documents, I decide to eat some lunch. Luckily I have some food in the house (and am not particularly hungry), so I nosh on some fruit and yogurt.
6 p.m. — I decide I’m up for civilization and pay my friend for tonight’s sound bath. She has been hosting them on her rooftop as part of her expanding restorative yoga practice, and I find it’s a really nice way to relax. $25
6:50 p.m. — I head out the door for the sound bath. It’s about 30 minutes away on foot, and thankfully it’s cooled down enough to take a long walk.
9:00 p.m. — Feeling refreshed and decidedly more human, I walk back home. My body decides now is a great time to be hungry, so I stop at (a different) McDonald’s for some more chicken nuggets and a strawberry sundae. I try not to make this a regular occurrence, but here we are. $7.28
10:30 p.m. — While winding down before bed, I realize my investment withdrawal hit my account today. I use a spare change app, so it’s a minor amount. $6.57
Daily Total: $38.85

Day Four

9 a.m. — Another day, another subway ride to the office. $2.75
2 p.m. — After surviving a morning of meetings and wavering for an hour about what I wanted for lunch, I decided on a Chipotle salad bowl from my favorite macro cheat sheet. I try to bring my lunch, butMy deskmate then offered me some LeVain cookie before he sent it off to the masses (score!). $9.74
6:30 p.m. — My office friends have a standing happy hour on Thursdays, and after some Slack negotiations we decide on a more low-key evening. I stay for two beers before heading home. $10.71 for drinks + $2.75 for the subway
8 p.m. — The heat is really killing my appetite this week, so I have another dinner of egg whites + laughing cow and seasoning. After cleaning up I have a Trader Joe’s frozen lemon bar for dessert. Between the weather, my period, and general life choices I’ve been feeling tired so I decide to hang in tonight, watching tv and doing laundry. My SO and I are on somewhat of conflicting schedules this week, so he’s out with friends while I have some time alone.
10:45 p.m. — I check my Mint before bed and notice that a Kickstarter I backed a while ago has been funded. In retrospect I probably shouldn’t have spent the money, but here we are. My spending habits, much like my eating habits, took a nosedive while I was burning out hard at my old job. I go to bed knowing I’m going in a better direction. $199
Daily Total: $224.95

Day Five

9 a.m. — I planned to work from home today, so I stretch and fire up my computer. My SO is officially on funemployment while he transitions to his new job, so he takes a walk to grab some groceries and some coffee from Blue Bottle. I’ve been curious about the coffee tonics I’ve been hearing so much about, so I request one. $13.50 for my share or groceries + $5 for a coffee tonic
5:45 p.m. — I have a productive day, both at home and with work. My friend has been asking to come check out my neighborhood (she lives in NJ), so I meet her for a glass of wine. She treats, and we stop at the grocery store on the way back to get some cheeses, meats, and breads for our dinner at my place. $29
10:30 p.m. — After a few hours of singing show tunes and planning aspirational field trips (we’re obviously very cool), my friend heads back to NJ and I head to bed. It’s been a much more active week than usual!
Daily Total: $47.50

Day Six

9:30 a.m. — I slept like a rock, and wake up to find some breakfast tacos and iced coffee, courtesy of my SO. We tend to split the cost for these adventures, which is fine by me because I am fed and caffeinated. $5
11 a.m. — SO and I spend the morning reading and catching up after a busy week. We decide to get a few to-dos accomplished before he leaves for an in-town bachelor party.
3 p.m. — SO leaves and I have the house to myself. I keep doing laundry and relax with old episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. It’s a super hot day, so being inside is perfectly okay.
9 p.m. — I find myself quite tired despite having a pretty sedentary day and head to bed early.
Daily Total: $5

Day Seven

8:30 a.m. — I’m up fairly early and remember that we blocked today off as a beach day!
10:45 a.m. — We get a slow start to the day, heading down to the local hardware store to procure a beach umbrella. The sun has been aggressive lately and we don’t have the desire to bring our tent. We snag an umbrella, as well as some miscellaneous cleaning products. Naturally, we stop for a coffee on the way back to the apartment. We’re generally more diligent about making iced coffee at home, but for some reason we’ve been missing the mark this week. $5 for coffee + $27.08 for my share of the hardware store order
12:45 p.m. — After a few more errands at home, getting ready, and eating some quick lunch, we head to the beach! Luckily we live near a subway to Coney Island (and it’s running without issues!), so we hop on. $2.75
1:30 p.m. — We made it! Finally! I have been so pumped for a beach day since meeting some friends in Atlantic City last month. We get set up and crack open two of the seltzers we packed for the trip. Ahh, sun and sand.
4:30 p.m. — We run out of provisions and decide to move ourselves indoors. We head to the Coney Island Brewery, which I’ve long been planning to visit. I am a homebrewer and my SO is studying to be a beer competition judge, so visiting breweries is one of our hobbies. We have flights and buy some swag. $43.50
6:30 p.m. — We both decide we’re craving burgers, and without a grill the best option is to head somewhere in the neighborhood. We choose a place and get on the subway home, but not before stopping for cotton candy (which I’ve been craving since we saw the Philharmonic in the park). I save it to enjoy for dessert. $2.75 for the subway + $3.25 for cotton candy
7:15 p.m. — We get to our dinner spot and order some burgers. We splurge on a shared side order of tots - worth it. $30.92
8:15 p.m. — We get home, shower, and decide to unwind for a bit before calling it a night.
9:30 p.m. — I have an early morning chiropractor appointment on Monday, so I turn in early. SO stays up to plot his funemployment week.
Daily Total: $115.25
The Breakdown:
Food & Drink: $138.02
Entertainment (brewery, scooter membership, tv): $67.18
Home & Health (Chiro, cleaning supplies, sound bath, gas bill): $222.01
Clothes & Beauty: $0
Transport (Subway + Cabs): $44.11
Other (Investment + Kickstarter): $205.57
Weekly Total: $676.89
submitted by calyps09 to MoneyDiariesACTIVE [link] [comments]

Tools & Info for SysAdmins - Mega Summary Q4 (Over 80 Items)

Hi sysadmin,
Each week I thought I'd post these SysAdmin tools, tips, tutorials etc with just one link to get it in your inbox each week (with extras). Let me know any ideas for future version in the comments!
This week is mega list of all the items we've featured to in the last 3 months, broken down into categories, for you to explore at your leisure. I hope you enjoy it.

Free Tools

Free MailFlow Monitor. Rejection / Delay Text Alerts, Group Policies, Alerts By SMTP Code, Trouble Shooting Tools including header analysis. MailFlow Monitor is EveryCloud’s (Our) free, cloud-based, round-trip tool that sends you an alert as soon as there is an issue with your email flow. Settings are adjustable to allow you to choose how much of a delay is acceptable and which types of bounce alerts you want to see. Helps you get to the bottom of a problem before users (or your boss) have even noticed it.

Postman is a popular, free app to make API development faster and easier. It offers a powerful GUI, saved history of requests, flexible monitoring, automated testing with collection runner, mock servers, and unlimited collections, environments, tests, and sharing. It also provides detailed documentation.

Microsoft Sysinternals Suite is all their utilities in one convenient file. Contains the all the individual troubleshooting tools as well as help files, but not non-troubleshooting tools like the BSOD Screen Saver or NotMyFault. A shout out to azers for recommending this one.

RichCopy is a simple tool written by a Microsoft engineer named Derk Benisch. It provides a much-appreciated graphical interface for the very popular Robocopy command-line utility.

Windows Update MiniTool is an alternative to the standard (and sometimes overbearing) Windows Update. It allows you to control updates by giving you the power to search, install, and block Windows updates in any way you like.

Space Monger gives you a graphical image of your whole disk, where large files and folders are easily identified. This handy tool can be run from a USB drive, so you don't even need to install it. Thanks for this one and Windows Update MiniTool go to mikedopp.

UNetbootin is a terrific, cross-platform utility for creating bootable live USB drives for Ubuntu and other Linux distributions without burning a CD. Thanks go to Gianks for this one.

CopyQ is a clipboard manager that adds some advanced editing and scripting capabilities. It monitors the system clipboard and saves text, HTML, images and more into customized tabs. From there, the saved content can be copied and pasted directly into any application. Clipboard history is easily searchable and can be filtered. Suggested by majkinetor.

Desktop Info provides a quick view of every kind of metric about your Windows system right on your desktop. The display looks like wallpaper but stays resident in memory and updates in real time. Gives you a quick way to monitor what any system is up to, while using very little memory and requiring almost nothing from the CPU. This one was recommended by mikedopp.

Healthstone is a lightweight, self-hosted, agent-based system-monitoring solution that runs lots of customizable health checks. The dashboard runs on a Windows or Linux server, and it has agents for the Windows and Linux hosts you want to monitor. You can customize the dashboard to send notifications via email, Pushbullet, or NodePoint tickets whenever a client stops checking in or any of the configured checks fail. Configuration is retrieved from the dashboard by all agents in the form of templates, which are stored in the templates folder and can be customized for your needs. Thanks to mikedopp for this one!

Rufus is another utility for formatting and creating bootable USB flash drives. This one works with MRB/GPT and BIOS/UEFI. Rufus is about twice as fast as UNetbootin, Universal USB Installer, or Windows 7 USB download tool when creating a Windows 7 USB installation drive from an ISO. It is also marginally faster for creating a Linux bootable USB from ISOs. We first heard of this one from Gianks, but there were quite a few others who shared the recommendation as well.

Axence netTools is a set of ten free tools for network scanning and monitoring. Includes: Netwatch (multiple host availability and response-time monitoring); Network port and service scanner; Wintools (view of launched processes/services, remote register editor and Windows event log view, HDD/RAM/CPU details, custom queries based on WMI protocol); TCP/IP workshop and SNMP browser; Traceroute; NetStat (list of inbound and outbound connections and open ports); Local info (tables with local configuration details, TCP/UDP stats); Lookup (DNS and WHOIS records); Bandwidth test; and NetCheck (LAN hardware and wiring quality check). This was recommended by DollarMindy as an "easy ping monitor with email alerts."

MediCat USB is a a bootable troubleshooting environment with Linux and Windows boot environments and troubleshooting tools. A complete Hiren's Boot Disk replacement for modern hardware that follows the Ubuntu release cycle with a new update released every 6 months. The DVD version was originally recommended to us by Spikerman "for when you need to helpdesk warrior."

MobaXterm is an enhanced terminal for remote computing. It brings all the key remote network tools (SSH, X11, RDP, VNC, FTP, MOSH) and Unix commands (bash, ls, cat, sed, grep, awk, rsync) to Windows desktop in a single, portable .exe file that works out of the box. The free version includes full X server and SSH support, remote desktop (RDP, VNC, Xdmcp), remote terminal (SSH, telnet, rlogin, Mosh), X11-Forwarding, automatic SFTP browser, plugins support, portable and installer versions but only 12 sessions, 2 SSH tunnels, 4 macros, and 360 seconds for Tftp/Nfs/Cron. Thanks go out to lazylion_ca for suggesting this one.

WinDirStat provides free, open-source graphical disk-usage analysis for MS Windows. You'll get a sub-tree view with disk-use percent and a list of file extensions ordered by usage. This tool was recommended by ohyeahwell, who likes to use it "for freespace as it can be deployed via ninite pro."

IIS Crypto allows administrators to enable or disable protocols, ciphers, hashes and key exchange algorithms on Windows Server 2008, 2012 and 2016. You can also reorder SSL/TLS cipher suites from IIS, implement best practices with a single click, create custom templates and test your website. Available in both command line and GUI versions. EOTFOFFTW tells us, “This tool has been very helpful in configuring SSL settings for Windows IIS servers.”

Ditto saves all your clipboard items so you can access them later. It works with anything that can be put on the clipboard—images, text, html and custom formats. The simple interface includes search and sync functions for ease of finding what you need. Thanks go to Arkiteck for suggesting this one!

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware should be your first stop if you suspect a malware infection. It is the most-effective malware remover—featuring deep scans and daily updates—and blocks malware, hacker, viruses, ransomware and malicious websites that slip through your traditional antivirus. Also available as a full AV program that you can buy if you wish to do so.

Termius is a complete command-line solution providing portable server management for UNIX and Linux systems—whether a local machine, a remote service, Docker Container, VM, Raspberry Pi, or AWS instance (similar to Putty for Android). This cross-platform Telnet, Mosh-compatible and SSH client. Securely access Linux or IoT devices to quickly fix issues from your laptop or phone. Thanks for this one go to blendelabor.

WSUS Offline Update lets you safely patch any computer running Microsoft Windows and Office—even when there's no connection to the Internet or a network of any sort. More specifically, you first run WSUS Offline Update on a machine that has Internet connectivity to download the updates you need and copy the resulting update media to a USB drive. You then use the USB drive to run the update on the target computers. Recommended by mikedopp.

SystemRescueCd is a Linux system rescue disk that allows you to administer or repair your system and data after a crash. It can be booted via CD/DVD, USB or installed directly on the hard disk. Many system utilities like GParted, fsarchiver, filesystem tools and basic tools (editors, midnight commander, network tools) are included, and it works on Linux and Windows computers, desktops and servers. Supports ext3/ext4, xfs, btrfs, reiserfs, jfs, vfat, ntfs—as well as network filesystems such as Samba and NFS.

KiTTY is a fork of PuTTY, the popular Telnet and SSH client. It runs on Windows and can perform all the tasks of PuTTY plus many more. Features include portability, predefined command shortcuts, sessions filter, session launcher, automatic log-on script, URL hyperlinks, automatic command and password, running locally saved scripts in remote sessions, ZModem integration, icons for each session, transparency, unfortunate keyboard input protection, roll-up, quick start of duplicate sessions, configuration box, automatic saving, Internet Explorer integration for SSH Handler, binary compression, clipboard printing, PuTTYCyg patch, background images/transparency and organizing sessions you save in a folder hierarchy.

WinMTR is a free, open-source Windows application that integrates the functions of the traceroute and ping utilities into a single, convenient network diagnostic tool. Many thanks to generalmx for suggesting both this and SystemRescueCd!

Free Services

SSL Labs SSL Server Test is a free online service that will run a deep analysis on the configuration for any SSL web server. Simply enter the hostname, and you'll get a detailed report highlighting any problems found on each server.

Draw.io is a free, browser-based diagramming application that's terrific for creating flowcharts and org charts. It's available as an online application with optional integration to various cloud storage options.

ImmuniWeb® SSLScan allows you to test SSL/TLS security and implementation for compliance with PCI DSS requirements, HIPAA guidance and NIST guidelines. Checks SSL certificate expiration for subdomains, insecure third-party content, and email servers’ SPF, DKIM, and DMARC implementation. Credit for this one goes to pixl_graphix.

BadSSL.com offers a simple, free way to test a browser's security setup. This helpful service was suggested by Already__Taken who advises you to "test what your MITM proxy will happily re-sign and present to you as a valid site."

Testssl.sh is a free command line tool that checks a server's service on any port for the support of TLS/SSL ciphers, protocols, recent cryptographic flaws and more. Recommended by stuck_in_the_tubes who likes it "for when you need to assess protocol encryption without the use of external services."

Tips

For access to all of the sysinternals tools on any Windows box with internet, just Win+R and open \\live.sysinternals.com\tools. It's a public SMB share with all of the tools that Microsoft hosts. Thanks to jedieaston for the tip.

BASH keyboard shortcut: 'Control + r' initiates a name/command lookup from the bash history. As you type, this 'reverse incremental search' will autocomplete with the most-recent match from your history.

Podcasts

Darknet Diaries podcast relates the fascinating, true stories of hackers, defenders, threats, malware, botnets, breaches, and privacy. The show's producer, Jack Rhysider, is a security-world veteran who gained experience fighting such exploits at a Security Operations Center. Thanks to unarj for suggesting this one.

StormCast is a daily 5-10 minute podcast from the Internet Storm Center covering the latest information security threat updates. New podcasts are released late in the day, so they're waiting for you to listen on your morning commute. While the format is compact, the information is very high-level and provides a real overview of the current state of affairs in the info-sec world.

Microsoft Cloud IT Pro podcast is hosted by Scott and Ben, two IT Pros with expertise in SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure. The podcast focuses primarily on Office 365 with some discussion on Azure, especially as it relates to Office 365 in areas such as Azure AD and Mobile Device Management (MDM) or Mobile Application Management (MAM).

Datanauts podcast keeps you up to date on developments in data center and infrastructure related to cloud, storage, virtualization, containers, networking, and convergence. Discussions focus on data center compute, storage, networking and automation to explore the newest technologies, including hyperconvergence and cloud.

Cloud Architects is a podcast on best practices, the latest news, and cutting-edge Microsoft cloud technologies. Nicolas Blank, Warren du Toit and Chris Goosen host discussions with various experts in the cloud space to gather helpful guidance and ideas.

Risky Business is a weekly podcast that covers both the latest news and thoughtful, in-depth discussions with the top minds in the security industry. Hosted by award-winning journalist Patrick Gray, it is a terrific way to stay up to date on information security.

The rollBak is a podcast on systems engineering, DevOps, networking, and automation—along with the odd discussion on software development or information security. Conversation is casual with the intention of making complex topics approachable in a way that fosters learning.

Tutorials

Get Started in PowerShell3 is a great jump start video series on starting out in PowerShell. According to sysadmin FireLucid, "It's a great broad overview of how it works and I found it extremely useful to have watched before starting on the book."

Websites

Ask Woody is a no-nonsense news, tips, and help site for Windows, Office, and more. You can post questions about Windows 10, Win8.1, Win7, Surface, Office, or browse through their forums. Recommended to us by deeperdownunder.

Learn X in Y minutes is a community-driven site that provides quick syntax for many popular programming languages. Here are direct links for some common ones, kindly provided by ssebs:

WintelGuy offers a handy collection of useful links, calculators, resources, and tools for the sysadmin. Thanks LateralLimey for the recommendation!

How-To Geek is a website dedicated to explaining today's technology. Content is written to be useful for all audiences—from regular people to geeky technophiles—and the focus is to put the latest news and tech into context.

EventSentry is a comprehensive, well-organized resource for Windows security events and auditing on the web. It allows you to see how events correlate using insertion strings and review the associated audit instructions. This was recommended by _deftoner_ as an “online DB where you can search for Windows Event Log by id, os, error code, etc. I do a lot of auditing on a big network thru event log ids, and sometimes I found rare errors—and there is not a good db with all of them. Not even Microsoft has one.”

Books

The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win tells the story of an IT manager's efforts to save his company's dysfunctional IT dept. The company's new IT initiative, code named Phoenix Project, is behind schedule and hugely over budget. Bill is given 90 days to resolve the entire mess—or have his entire department outsourced. An entertaining read, with elements that seem familiar to most system admins. Comes highly recommended by sp00n_b3nd3r.

UNIX® and Linux® System Administration Handbook, 5th Edition, is a comprehensive guide written by world-class, hands-on experts. It covers best practices for every area of system administration—including storage management, network design and administration, security, web hosting, automation, configuration management, performance analysis, virtualization, DNS, security, and management of IT service organizations. You'll learn all about installing, configuring, and maintaining any UNIX or Linux system, even those that supply core Internet and cloud infrastructure. A great resource for anyone responsible for running systems built on UNIX or Linux.

Taming Information Technology: Lessons from Studies of System Administrators (Human Technology Interaction Series)was suggested by AngryMountainBiker, who describes it as "essentially an ethnographic study of system administrators. The authors videotaped and otherwise documented SA's over a period of time and were able to break down a number of fascinating incidents and how to improve the art. I'm disappointed this hasn't been recommended reading for all SA's and maybe more importantly, their bosses, who too often don't really know what SA's do."

Learn Active Directory Management in a Month of Lunches is a practical, hands-on guide for those who are new to Active Directory. It covers the administration tasks that keep a network running smoothly and how to administer AD both from the GUI tools built into Windows and from PowerShell at the command line. Provides best practices for managing user access, setting group policies, automating backups, and more. All examples are based in Windows Server 2012.

CheatSheets

Sans Digital Forensics and Incident Response Cheat Sheets provide a collection of assorted, handy incident response cheat sheets. It's a helpful reference for commands, process, tactics, tips, tools and techniques that was compiled by Sans DFIR, the experts in incident-response training.

Blogs

Ned Pyle's blog from Microsoft's Directory Services Team contains a wealth of posts on best practices and solutions to common issues. While no longer actively maintained by Ned Pyle, the library of information already posted is incredibly valuable. Thanks to azers for bringing this to our attention.

Happy SysAdm has been providing resources, solutions and tips for system administrators since 2010. The blog is written by a Senior Systems Administrator with close to 15 years experience in designing, scripting, monitoring and performance-tuning Microsoft environments going all the way back to Windows 3.1/95/NT4.

Stephanos Constantinou's Blog shares the author's original scripts for PowerShell, Microsoft Active Directory, Microsoft Exchange On-Premise and Online (Office 365) and Microsoft Azure. His current focus is on retrieving data from systems, editing it and automating procedures. You'll also find a section with some PowerShell tutorials.

Have a fantastic week!!
u/crispyducks (Graham @ EveryCloud)

P.S. Some Extra Free Tools We Put In The Email Version

Clonezilla is free, open-source software for disk cloning, disk imaging, data recovery, and deployment—helping with system deployment, bare metal backup, and recovery. Cloning efficiency is optimized by the program's approach of saving/restoring only used blocks in the hard disk.

SPF Record Testing Tools is a query tool designed to help you deploy SPF records for your domain. It validates if an SPF record exists and whether it is formatted correctly and entered into your DNS as a proper TXT record.

PS Remote Registry module contains functions to create, modify, or delete registry subkeys and values on local or remote computers. This one was recommended to us by IhaveGin.

PowerCopy GUI was recommended by Elementix, who described it as "similar to RichCopy, but it uses .Net, PowerShell, and Robocopy. A good (non-install) alternative." The tool allows you to set up predefined options, one-click access to help and log file, and instant error analysis.

Gitbash is a package containing bash and a collection of other, separate *nix utilities like ssh, scp, cat, find and others—compiled for Windows—and a new command-line interface terminal window called mintty. Recommended by sysacc who tells us he's been "dealing with log files lately and I've been using...Gitbash a LOT... It's part of the Git tools, I love having access to Linux commands on Windows."

Easy2Boot is a collection of grub4dos scripts to be copied onto a grub4dos-bootable USB drive. Each time you boot, the E2B scripts automatically find all the payload files (.ISO, .IMA, .BIN, .IMG, etc.) on the USB drive and dynamically generate the menus. Thanks to Phx86 who says it "creates a very versatile USB drive. It checks a lot of marks other various tools did not. Formats NTFS, your ISO boot disks doubles as standard NTFS storage. Drag and drop .ISO files to the correct folder, then boot directly to them. Boot menu reads the .ISO files and builds a menu based on what is loaded on the drive. No fiddling around with custom boot menus when you add a new .ISO."

CCleaner is the fastest way to eliminate temporary files and Windows Registry problems. Our own Matt Frye says, "When a machine is having problems, this is almost always the tool I use first. It also helps to ensure privacy by getting rid of traces left behind (such as cookies) by web browsers."

Netwrix Auditor Free Community Edition is a great auditing/monitoring tool for the Windows sysadmin. It lets you see changes and access events in your hybrid cloud IT environment, so you can stop worrying you'll miss critical changes to AD objects, file server permissions, Windows Server configuration or other security incidents.

WinSCP is an SFTP client and FTP client for Windows with a GUI, integrated text editor, scripting and task automation. It allows you to copy files between a local computer and remote servers via FTP, FTPS, SCP, SFTP, WebDAV or S3 file transfer protocols.

Why am I doing this each week?
I want to be mindful of the rules of the subreddit, so if you’d like to know more about my reasons for doing this, please visit the bottom of the sister post on SysAdminBlogs:
https://www.reddit.com/SysAdminBlogs/comments/a560s6/tools_info_for_sysadmins_mega_summary_q4_over_80/
You can view last weeks post here: https://www.reddit.com/sysadmin/comments/a2zuhy/tools_info_for_sysadmins_linux_rescue_disk_telnet/

Edit 1: As some of you may know this post got caught in site wide filters today. It's since been released as you can see, but whilst that was all happening I set up a new subreddit /ITProTuesday. We'll post them in here each week to, so please subscribe if you want to make sure you don't miss out on them!

Edit 2: I'm greatly honoured by the gold!! Thank you anonymous user.
submitted by crispyducks to sysadmin [link] [comments]

Tools & Info for SysAdmins - Mega Summary Q4 (Over 80 Items)

Hi Everyone,
Each week I thought I'd post these SysAdmin tools, tips, tutorials etc with just one link to get it in your inbox each week (with extras). Let me know any ideas for future version in the comments!
This week is mega list of all the items we've featured to in the last 3 months, broken down into categories, for you to explore at your leisure. I hope you enjoy it.

Free Tools

Free MailFlow Monitor. Rejection / Delay Text Alerts, Group Policies, Alerts By SMTP Code, Trouble Shooting Tools including header analysis. MailFlow Monitor is EveryCloud’s (Our) free, cloud-based, round-trip tool that sends you an alert as soon as there is an issue with your email flow. Settings are adjustable to allow you to choose how much of a delay is acceptable and which types of bounce alerts you want to see. Helps you get to the bottom of a problem before users (or your boss) have even noticed it.

Postman is a popular, free app to make API development faster and easier. It offers a powerful GUI, saved history of requests, flexible monitoring, automated testing with collection runner, mock servers, and unlimited collections, environments, tests, and sharing. It also provides detailed documentation.

Microsoft Sysinternals Suite is all their utilities in one convenient file. Contains the all the individual troubleshooting tools as well as help files, but not non-troubleshooting tools like the BSOD Screen Saver or NotMyFault. A shout out to azers for recommending this one.

RichCopy is a simple tool written by a Microsoft engineer named Derk Benisch. It provides a much-appreciated graphical interface for the very popular Robocopy command-line utility.

Windows Update MiniTool is an alternative to the standard (and sometimes overbearing) Windows Update. It allows you to control updates by giving you the power to search, install, and block Windows updates in any way you like.

Space Monger gives you a graphical image of your whole disk, where large files and folders are easily identified. This handy tool can be run from a USB drive, so you don't even need to install it. Thanks for this one and Windows Update MiniTool go to mikedopp.

UNetbootin is a terrific, cross-platform utility for creating bootable live USB drives for Ubuntu and other Linux distributions without burning a CD. Thanks go to Gianks for this one.

CopyQ is a clipboard manager that adds some advanced editing and scripting capabilities. It monitors the system clipboard and saves text, HTML, images and more into customized tabs. From there, the saved content can be copied and pasted directly into any application. Clipboard history is easily searchable and can be filtered. Suggested by majkinetor.

Desktop Info provides a quick view of every kind of metric about your Windows system right on your desktop. The display looks like wallpaper but stays resident in memory and updates in real time. Gives you a quick way to monitor what any system is up to, while using very little memory and requiring almost nothing from the CPU. This one was recommended by mikedopp.

Healthstone is a lightweight, self-hosted, agent-based system-monitoring solution that runs lots of customizable health checks. The dashboard runs on a Windows or Linux server, and it has agents for the Windows and Linux hosts you want to monitor. You can customize the dashboard to send notifications via email, Pushbullet, or NodePoint tickets whenever a client stops checking in or any of the configured checks fail. Configuration is retrieved from the dashboard by all agents in the form of templates, which are stored in the templates folder and can be customized for your needs. Thanks to mikedopp for this one!

Rufus is another utility for formatting and creating bootable USB flash drives. This one works with MRB/GPT and BIOS/UEFI. Rufus is about twice as fast as UNetbootin, Universal USB Installer, or Windows 7 USB download tool when creating a Windows 7 USB installation drive from an ISO. It is also marginally faster for creating a Linux bootable USB from ISOs. We first heard of this one from Gianks, but there were quite a few others who shared the recommendation as well.

Axence netTools is a set of ten free tools for network scanning and monitoring. Includes: Netwatch (multiple host availability and response-time monitoring); Network port and service scanner; Wintools (view of launched processes/services, remote register editor and Windows event log view, HDD/RAM/CPU details, custom queries based on WMI protocol); TCP/IP workshop and SNMP browser; Traceroute; NetStat (list of inbound and outbound connections and open ports); Local info (tables with local configuration details, TCP/UDP stats); Lookup (DNS and WHOIS records); Bandwidth test; and NetCheck (LAN hardware and wiring quality check). This was recommended by DollarMindy as an "easy ping monitor with email alerts."

MediCat USB is a a bootable troubleshooting environment with Linux and Windows boot environments and troubleshooting tools. A complete Hiren's Boot Disk replacement for modern hardware that follows the Ubuntu release cycle with a new update released every 6 months. The DVD version was originally recommended to us by Spikerman "for when you need to helpdesk warrior."

MobaXterm is an enhanced terminal for remote computing. It brings all the key remote network tools (SSH, X11, RDP, VNC, FTP, MOSH) and Unix commands (bash, ls, cat, sed, grep, awk, rsync) to Windows desktop in a single, portable .exe file that works out of the box. The free version includes full X server and SSH support, remote desktop (RDP, VNC, Xdmcp), remote terminal (SSH, telnet, rlogin, Mosh), X11-Forwarding, automatic SFTP browser, plugins support, portable and installer versions but only 12 sessions, 2 SSH tunnels, 4 macros, and 360 seconds for Tftp/Nfs/Cron. Thanks go out to lazylion_ca for suggesting this one.

WinDirStat provides free, open-source graphical disk-usage analysis for MS Windows. You'll get a sub-tree view with disk-use percent and a list of file extensions ordered by usage. This tool was recommended by ohyeahwell, who likes to use it "for freespace as it can be deployed via ninite pro."

IIS Crypto allows administrators to enable or disable protocols, ciphers, hashes and key exchange algorithms on Windows Server 2008, 2012 and 2016. You can also reorder SSL/TLS cipher suites from IIS, implement best practices with a single click, create custom templates and test your website. Available in both command line and GUI versions. EOTFOFFTW tells us, “This tool has been very helpful in configuring SSL settings for Windows IIS servers.”

Ditto saves all your clipboard items so you can access them later. It works with anything that can be put on the clipboard—images, text, html and custom formats. The simple interface includes search and sync functions for ease of finding what you need. Thanks go to Arkiteck for suggesting this one!

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware should be your first stop if you suspect a malware infection. It is the most-effective malware remover—featuring deep scans and daily updates—and blocks malware, hacker, viruses, ransomware and malicious websites that slip through your traditional antivirus. Also available as a full AV program that you can buy if you wish to do so.

Termius is a complete command-line solution providing portable server management for UNIX and Linux systems—whether a local machine, a remote service, Docker Container, VM, Raspberry Pi, or AWS instance (similar to Putty for Android). This cross-platform Telnet, Mosh-compatible and SSH client. Securely access Linux or IoT devices to quickly fix issues from your laptop or phone. Thanks for this one go to blendelabor.

WSUS Offline Update lets you safely patch any computer running Microsoft Windows and Office—even when there's no connection to the Internet or a network of any sort. More specifically, you first run WSUS Offline Update on a machine that has Internet connectivity to download the updates you need and copy the resulting update media to a USB drive. You then use the USB drive to run the update on the target computers. Recommended by mikedopp.

SystemRescueCd is a Linux system rescue disk that allows you to administer or repair your system and data after a crash. It can be booted via CD/DVD, USB or installed directly on the hard disk. Many system utilities like GParted, fsarchiver, filesystem tools and basic tools (editors, midnight commander, network tools) are included, and it works on Linux and Windows computers, desktops and servers. Supports ext3/ext4, xfs, btrfs, reiserfs, jfs, vfat, ntfs—as well as network filesystems such as Samba and NFS.

KiTTY is a fork of PuTTY, the popular Telnet and SSH client. It runs on Windows and can perform all the tasks of PuTTY plus many more. Features include portability, predefined command shortcuts, sessions filter, session launcher, automatic log-on script, URL hyperlinks, automatic command and password, running locally saved scripts in remote sessions, ZModem integration, icons for each session, transparency, unfortunate keyboard input protection, roll-up, quick start of duplicate sessions, configuration box, automatic saving, Internet Explorer integration for SSH Handler, binary compression, clipboard printing, PuTTYCyg patch, background images/transparency and organizing sessions you save in a folder hierarchy.

WinMTR is a free, open-source Windows application that integrates the functions of the traceroute and ping utilities into a single, convenient network diagnostic tool. Many thanks to generalmx for suggesting both this and SystemRescueCd!

Free Services

SSL Labs SSL Server Test is a free online service that will run a deep analysis on the configuration for any SSL web server. Simply enter the hostname, and you'll get a detailed report highlighting any problems found on each server.

Draw.io is a free, browser-based diagramming application that's terrific for creating flowcharts and org charts. It's available as an online application with optional integration to various cloud storage options.

ImmuniWeb® SSLScan allows you to test SSL/TLS security and implementation for compliance with PCI DSS requirements, HIPAA guidance and NIST guidelines. Checks SSL certificate expiration for subdomains, insecure third-party content, and email servers’ SPF, DKIM, and DMARC implementation. Credit for this one goes to pixl_graphix.

BadSSL.com offers a simple, free way to test a browser's security setup. This helpful service was suggested by Already__Taken who advises you to "test what your MITM proxy will happily re-sign and present to you as a valid site."

Testssl.sh is a free command line tool that checks a server's service on any port for the support of TLS/SSL ciphers, protocols, recent cryptographic flaws and more. Recommended by stuck_in_the_tubes who likes it "for when you need to assess protocol encryption without the use of external services."

Tips

For access to all of the sysinternals tools on any Windows box with internet, just Win+R and open \\live.sysinternals.com\tools. It's a public SMB share with all of the tools that Microsoft hosts. Thanks to jedieaston for the tip.

BASH keyboard shortcut: 'Control + r' initiates a name/command lookup from the bash history. As you type, this 'reverse incremental search' will autocomplete with the most-recent match from your history.

Podcasts

Darknet Diaries podcast relates the fascinating, true stories of hackers, defenders, threats, malware, botnets, breaches, and privacy. The show's producer, Jack Rhysider, is a security-world veteran who gained experience fighting such exploits at a Security Operations Center. Thanks to unarj for suggesting this one.

StormCast is a daily 5-10 minute podcast from the Internet Storm Center covering the latest information security threat updates. New podcasts are released late in the day, so they're waiting for you to listen on your morning commute. While the format is compact, the information is very high-level and provides a real overview of the current state of affairs in the info-sec world.

Microsoft Cloud IT Pro podcast is hosted by Scott and Ben, two IT Pros with expertise in SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure. The podcast focuses primarily on Office 365 with some discussion on Azure, especially as it relates to Office 365 in areas such as Azure AD and Mobile Device Management (MDM) or Mobile Application Management (MAM).

Datanauts podcast keeps you up to date on developments in data center and infrastructure related to cloud, storage, virtualization, containers, networking, and convergence. Discussions focus on data center compute, storage, networking and automation to explore the newest technologies, including hyperconvergence and cloud.

Cloud Architects is a podcast on best practices, the latest news, and cutting-edge Microsoft cloud technologies. Nicolas Blank, Warren du Toit and Chris Goosen host discussions with various experts in the cloud space to gather helpful guidance and ideas.

Risky Business is a weekly podcast that covers both the latest news and thoughtful, in-depth discussions with the top minds in the security industry. Hosted by award-winning journalist Patrick Gray, it is a terrific way to stay up to date on information security.

The rollBak is a podcast on systems engineering, DevOps, networking, and automation—along with the odd discussion on software development or information security. Conversation is casual with the intention of making complex topics approachable in a way that fosters learning.

Tutorials

Get Started in PowerShell3 is a great jump start video series on starting out in PowerShell. According to sysadmin FireLucid, "It's a great broad overview of how it works and I found it extremely useful to have watched before starting on the book."

Websites

Ask Woody is a no-nonsense news, tips, and help site for Windows, Office, and more. You can post questions about Windows 10, Win8.1, Win7, Surface, Office, or browse through their forums. Recommended to us by deeperdownunder.

Learn X in Y minutes is a community-driven site that provides quick syntax for many popular programming languages. Here are direct links for some common ones, kindly provided by ssebs:

WintelGuy offers a handy collection of useful links, calculators, resources, and tools for the sysadmin. Thanks LateralLimey for the recommendation!

How-To Geek is a website dedicated to explaining today's technology. Content is written to be useful for all audiences—from regular people to geeky technophiles—and the focus is to put the latest news and tech into context.

EventSentry is a comprehensive, well-organized resource for Windows security events and auditing on the web. It allows you to see how events correlate using insertion strings and review the associated audit instructions. This was recommended by _deftoner_ as an “online DB where you can search for Windows Event Log by id, os, error code, etc. I do a lot of auditing on a big network thru event log ids, and sometimes I found rare errors—and there is not a good db with all of them. Not even Microsoft has one.”

Books

The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win tells the story of an IT manager's efforts to save his company's dysfunctional IT dept. The company's new IT initiative, code named Phoenix Project, is behind schedule and hugely over budget. Bill is given 90 days to resolve the entire mess—or have his entire department outsourced. An entertaining read, with elements that seem familiar to most system admins. Comes highly recommended by sp00n_b3nd3r.

UNIX® and Linux® System Administration Handbook, 5th Edition, is a comprehensive guide written by world-class, hands-on experts. It covers best practices for every area of system administration—including storage management, network design and administration, security, web hosting, automation, configuration management, performance analysis, virtualization, DNS, security, and management of IT service organizations. You'll learn all about installing, configuring, and maintaining any UNIX or Linux system, even those that supply core Internet and cloud infrastructure. A great resource for anyone responsible for running systems built on UNIX or Linux.

Taming Information Technology: Lessons from Studies of System Administrators (Human Technology Interaction Series)was suggested by AngryMountainBiker, who describes it as "essentially an ethnographic study of system administrators. The authors videotaped and otherwise documented SA's over a period of time and were able to break down a number of fascinating incidents and how to improve the art. I'm disappointed this hasn't been recommended reading for all SA's and maybe more importantly, their bosses, who too often don't really know what SA's do."

Learn Active Directory Management in a Month of Lunches is a practical, hands-on guide for those who are new to Active Directory. It covers the administration tasks that keep a network running smoothly and how to administer AD both from the GUI tools built into Windows and from PowerShell at the command line. Provides best practices for managing user access, setting group policies, automating backups, and more. All examples are based in Windows Server 2012.

CheatSheets

Sans Digital Forensics and Incident Response Cheat Sheets provide a collection of assorted, handy incident response cheat sheets. It's a helpful reference for commands, process, tactics, tips, tools and techniques that was compiled by Sans DFIR, the experts in incident-response training.

Blogs

Ned Pyle's blog from Microsoft's Directory Services Team contains a wealth of posts on best practices and solutions to common issues. While no longer actively maintained by Ned Pyle, the library of information already posted is incredibly valuable. Thanks to azers for bringing this to our attention.

Happy SysAdm has been providing resources, solutions and tips for system administrators since 2010. The blog is written by a Senior Systems Administrator with close to 15 years experience in designing, scripting, monitoring and performance-tuning Microsoft environments going all the way back to Windows 3.1/95/NT4.

Stephanos Constantinou's Blog shares the author's original scripts for PowerShell, Microsoft Active Directory, Microsoft Exchange On-Premise and Online (Office 365) and Microsoft Azure. His current focus is on retrieving data from systems, editing it and automating procedures. You'll also find a section with some PowerShell tutorials.

Have a fantastic week!!
u/crispyducks (Graham @ EveryCloud)

P.S. Some Extra Free Tools We Put In The Email Version

Clonezilla is free, open-source software for disk cloning, disk imaging, data recovery, and deployment—helping with system deployment, bare metal backup, and recovery. Cloning efficiency is optimized by the program's approach of saving/restoring only used blocks in the hard disk.

SPF Record Testing Tools is a query tool designed to help you deploy SPF records for your domain. It validates if an SPF record exists and whether it is formatted correctly and entered into your DNS as a proper TXT record.

PS Remote Registry module contains functions to create, modify, or delete registry subkeys and values on local or remote computers. This one was recommended to us by IhaveGin.

PowerCopy GUI was recommended by Elementix, who described it as "similar to RichCopy, but it uses .Net, PowerShell, and Robocopy. A good (non-install) alternative." The tool allows you to set up predefined options, one-click access to help and log file, and instant error analysis.

Gitbash is a package containing bash and a collection of other, separate *nix utilities like ssh, scp, cat, find and others—compiled for Windows—and a new command-line interface terminal window called mintty. Recommended by sysacc who tells us he's been "dealing with log files lately and I've been using...Gitbash a LOT... It's part of the Git tools, I love having access to Linux commands on Windows."

Easy2Boot is a collection of grub4dos scripts to be copied onto a grub4dos-bootable USB drive. Each time you boot, the E2B scripts automatically find all the payload files (.ISO, .IMA, .BIN, .IMG, etc.) on the USB drive and dynamically generate the menus. Thanks to Phx86 who says it "creates a very versatile USB drive. It checks a lot of marks other various tools did not. Formats NTFS, your ISO boot disks doubles as standard NTFS storage. Drag and drop .ISO files to the correct folder, then boot directly to them. Boot menu reads the .ISO files and builds a menu based on what is loaded on the drive. No fiddling around with custom boot menus when you add a new .ISO."

CCleaner is the fastest way to eliminate temporary files and Windows Registry problems. Our own Matt Frye says, "When a machine is having problems, this is almost always the tool I use first. It also helps to ensure privacy by getting rid of traces left behind (such as cookies) by web browsers."

Netwrix Auditor Free Community Edition is a great auditing/monitoring tool for the Windows sysadmin. It lets you see changes and access events in your hybrid cloud IT environment, so you can stop worrying you'll miss critical changes to AD objects, file server permissions, Windows Server configuration or other security incidents.

WinSCP is an SFTP client and FTP client for Windows with a GUI, integrated text editor, scripting and task automation. It allows you to copy files between a local computer and remote servers via FTP, FTPS, SCP, SFTP, WebDAV or S3 file transfer protocols.
submitted by crispyducks to ITProTuesday [link] [comments]

[OC] The Magineer - Chapter 23

Chapter 23

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This chapter has a total of ~6300 words, at an average rate of 400 wpm this chapter should take ~15 and a half minutes to read
~-~
Ethan stood by the door he'd just opened, still holding the door handle and watching as Memeta strode into the room like she owned the place. He was still completely bemused by the fact that he was being visited by some strange woman, and that this wasn’t some bizarre dream. It seemed Memeta was rather bemused as well, she looked around curiously at the simulated lab, seemingly interested in the strange screens and items around the room.
The awkward silence persisted for a moment before she turned to Ethan.
“Well, this is certainly an interesting place you have,” she commented absentmindedly. Ethan closed the door and crossed his arms, frowning a little.
“I don't mean to be rude, but who the hell are you, and what are you doing here?” He asked flatly, ignoring her comment. He set his AI to work documenting all their interactions and analysing the situation.
“Well you are certainly very direct. I guess I owe you a pretty big explanation.”
Memeta paced around the room as she started speaking.
“First off, are you aware of what a divine is?”
“Vaguely,” he replied after a moment of thought, “I know that there seems to be beings of power or a system that controls this world. I received a ‘divine blessing’ once. I figured there weren't actual beings behind it though, just a system. It seems that I'm wrong, however.”
Memeta smiled and didn't respond for a moment, instead she motioned towards a small microscope and cocked an eyebrow at Ethan, seemingly asking if she could fiddle with it. Ethan nodded towards her. Seeing his sign of approval she picked it up and started looking around the item.
“Good, at least you’re not completely blind to what we are.” As she was speaking she looked down the lens on the microscope and a look of confusion briefly passed over her face, she continued despite her apparent confusion, “You're right in the fact that we are beings, although I don’t think you see the scale. There are hundreds of us who live in what is called the ‘Celestial Plane’, each of us have a nemesis or rather, an opposite. We have a large level of power and influence over the mortal plane, although we aren't unlimited in our power. We have our abilities over mortals limited by something called “The Wheel”, a system for balance that keeps us in check. Our interactions with the world through this Wheel are controlled by limited “Faith points” that we accrue over time and can use to influence things on the mortal planes. Everything in this world should be operating under the influence of the Wheel, and it does.” She paused for a moment, “Apart from you, that is.” Memeta hesitated for a second as she thought carefully on what to say next.
“We cannot perceive the world through your eyes, or know your feelings like with any other mortal. You are completely locked out from our control.” She stopped trying to look down the lens on the microscope and looked Ethan directly in the eye “This makes you special. Most of the divines want to see you dead, however you have been greatly furthering my cause.” Ethan had a lot of questions, but one stuck out from the rest.
“And what ‘cause’ is that?”
“I’m the goddess of free information and memetics, my dear. My cause is to spread knowledge, ensure that information doesn't get lost to time and to stop information that wants to be free from becoming secret.”
Well, that explains why she is almost completely naked. I'm not complaining, though. Ethan mused.
“This is why you are important to me. You seem to have a vast amount of knowledge alien to this world, and have a knack for discovering things that others want to keep secret.” She beamed Ethan another smile, “I do believe that keeping you alive would be of great advantage for me, which is why I’m here.”
It dawned on Ethan what this was all about, it seemed that he had a few friends up in the so called “Celestial plane”. It made Ethan curious however.
“So you’ve basically come here to help me beat that?” Ethan motioned towards a screen displaying a still of the Nephilim chasing him, “There has to be strings attached, you can’t be entirely altruistic in your cause.”
While they talked, Memeta continued to look around the curious items in Ethan's lab, inspecting and fiddling with each one. It was not like the various scientific instruments could be broken. Regardless, on any normal day Ethan would have been bothered and told her stop. Today was very much not a normal day.
“You’re partly right.” She answered plainly “What do you think a goddess of my disposition wants from you in return for helping you in your current situation?”
Ethan pondered the question for a moment, she could want many things from him. Maybe she wanted the sceptre, or for him to become her harbinger? If she truly was being altruistic in nature she wouldn't want any of these things, would a god even have a need for a physical item such as the sceptre? No seemed to be the obvious answer, which meant there was one other thing she would want.
“You want information” Ethan stated “About what, though?” Memeta let out a sigh at Ethan's question.
“Isn’t it obvious? I want to know about you. Of all things I know about, you are the one mysterious piece of the puzzle. What are your origins? What motivates you? What is the end goal to all your current actions? Who really is Ethan West?”
Ethan was taken back a little by the question, she wanted to know about him? While back on Earth he would have struggled to answer the question she had just posed, ever since his accidental arrival in this world he felt a lot more purpose to his life.
“Well, this is a tricky question” Ethan replied. He leant against a nearby table as he thought “To be truthful, I’m not entirely sure what is motivating me, I’ve just been going with the flow so far.”
“I guess the side of me that is a scientist is motivating me, I need to know why and how this world works and then be able to use that knowledge to the best of my ability.” Ethan paused to think for a brief moment, “I guess my end goal is to improve the lives of people in this world and use the magic to my own benefit. You divines are immortal, maybe I could extend my life or something. That would be nice. More than anything though, I have the ability to be something here. Back where I come from I was just one of many, in fact many people considered my line of research crazy or a waste of time, So I’d also like to find a way back to Earth at some point and show people there this amazing place I’ve discovered.” Memeta had stopped fiddling and seemed to be paying a great deal of attention to Ethan. Ethan looked over at her, “Is that what you were hoping to hear?”
Memeta chuckled to herself, “Thank you for the information! It certainly explains a lot, no wonder you’re such a strange person… you’re not even from this world! It seems to me that you will keep spreading your knowledge and generally keep doing what you have been doing already, meaning I’m more than happy to help you.”
Ethan was glad to hear this, although there was one more thing he wanted to know.
“That's good to hear. I’m curious though, am I quite popular in the celestial plane? What does your ‘nemesis’ think of me, for example? Also, what exactly are you planning to do in order to help me?” Ethan added at the last second.
“Well… in answer to your first question, I wouldn't call you popular, more like… infamous. You don't have many admirers amongst the divines, so you should value the few of us who do support you. You should know, your actions have actually brought a new pair of divines into existence, as you can imagine they are pretty big fans.” Ethan was pleased to hear something positive but then frowned as he realised that divines who supported him were greatly outnumbered by those who didn’t,“In terms of my nemesis? Crypto hates you with a burning passion, I wouldn't be surprised to find that this Nephilim you are currently fighting is his doing. It is a lot of fun to tease him about the little he can do to stop you.”
Memeta had sat down in one of the swivelling office-type chairs while talking and seemed interested in the way it rotated “In terms of helping you? I'm sure the main thing you've figured I have by this point is knowledge, and that's exactly what I'm going to give you.” She paused and looked directly at Ethan with a piercing look, Ethan would have been worried if he knew this “look” is the one divines have when they are casting a spell.
“Ever heard of soul magic?”
“Uh no, why do y–” Ethan was interrupted mid sentence as a line of text flashed in his vision.
Divine Blessing Received: Knowledge Package
The message was quickly followed by another prompt from his AI.

Yes Ethan thought without taking long to consider it, he waited anxiously to see what Memeta had just given him.
Information rapidly flooded into Ethan's mind and his AI quickly got to work organising it and cataloguing it. Screens around his lab flared with information as his AI processed the data.
Ethan got an idea of what he had just received fairly quickly as the information assembled itself. He had just been given terabytes of data on soul magic, everything from how to actually produce the Thuam to different spells that were possible.
“Wow, this is amazing!” Ethan had pulled up a few holographic displays and was rapidly reading through them “How are you able to even give me this information, I thought you said divines couldn’t directly influence me?”
Memeta giggled to herself, seemingly proud of something.
“That's the trick, I can't directly influence you, if I could I would have been able to directly grant you this knowledge and have you learn it instantly, so I did the next best thing. Through means I don’t really understand, you are able to process vast amounts of information in your head, so I’ve used our direct link to give you all the knowledge I have of soul magic to look over.” Ethan nodded eagerly at what she was saying, the truth was that he wasn’t really paying much attention anymore, he was deeply consumed in various displays in front of him. He would need to get to work straight away in order to have a working spell that could save him. Memeta stood around awkwardly for a few moments before scratching the back of her head and sighing.
“Well since you’re going to be busy I’ll leave you to it–“
“Wait! Don’t go yet!” Ethan turned away from the screens and suddenly seemed very interested in Memeta, she didn’t know whether this was a good sign or not.
“I just want to ask one thing, do you mind if I use my [Analyse] Skill on you? It's a simple Skill I’ve had pretty much since I arrived on this world. One that tells me information about any objects or person I use it on, considering you’re the first divine being I’ve met it would be a great help to my knowledge of this world if I could use it on you… willingly. It doesn’t end so well when I use the Skill on unwilling participants….” Memeta cocked one of her eyebrows and smirked at what Ethan had just said. Unknown to Ethan the skill he possessed was one of Memetas creations, the wheel had just never assigned it to anyone before. She decided to play oblivious and tease him a bit.
“Oh? So, seeing most of my bare skin isn’t enough information for you?” She put her hands on her hips in an attempt to look intimidating and Ethan blushed a little.
“I- I didn’t mean it like that! The skill doesn’t reveal things li–”
“Oh hush” Memeta silenced him, “I’m only messing with you, go ahead and use it. I swear if this is a trick of some kind you are not going to have a good day.” Ethan shook his head, he should have figured that even divines have an apparent sense of humor.
It took a moment for Ethan to figure out how to cast the skill, you needed to cast it at a target afterall, which in this case was in his own mind. Luckily he quickly found a workaround which involved using his AI to define Memeta as a separate entity in his mind, so that she could be targeted. Ethan was half prepared for Memeta to go berserk and start attacking him, however, that didn’t happen. Memeta simply frowned.
“Well, that was bizarre. My own voice told me I was being analysed just then…” Ethan didn’t really hear her as he looked over the stats, he had expected something very powerful, but this? This was completely insane!
For Ethan it could be anything but anticlimactic. He stared wide eyed at the stats displayed on his vision.
Name Memeta - Goddess of Memetics and Free Information Species Divine
Class (1st) Divine Spirit - Knowledge (Level 532) Strength (STR) ??
Class (2nd) Know-It-All (Level 411) Vitality (VIT) ??
XP (Deferred) ∞ (∞) Dexterity (DEX) ??
AP/SP Available ?? AP / ?? SP Agility (AGI) ??
Health ∞/∞ (+∞/min) Intelligence (INT) ??
Mana ∞ (+∞/min) Wisdom (WIS) ??
Age ?? Willpower ??
Soul Type Divine Faith Points 3672 (+0.1/week)
Affliction Level Description
Divine Sapience 191 (65%) You have followers in the mortal plane, granting you the power to become a sapient form.
Curse of The Wheel 78 (78%) Your powers are artificially limited by the effects of The Wheel.
Ethan couldn’t comprehend how something could have stats that simply said “infinity”, it broke the entire understanding that Ethan currently had of the system that the world used… or maybe he was interpreting it wrong?
It seemed that Divines were unable to manifest in the real world, they were only allowed to exist in the “Celestial Plane” that Memeta had mentioned, so perhaps the system couldn’t interpret her statistics properly because Divines were more like outside forces than people?
That description made the most sense in Ethan's mind, if a divine were to manifest themselves in the “real world” then they would have statistics that made a lot more sense as it wouldn’t actually be the Divine. It would just be a representation of them assembled using the power available to them. Ethan's line of thought was abruptly interrupted by Memeta.
“Well, did you learn what you hoped?” She asked.
“I have a lot of questions” Ethan paused, “First off, How is it possible to have ‘infinite’ health and mana? That makes no sense, the way I understand it there should always be values to everyone's stats.” Ethan queried after a moment of thinking. Memeta only gave him a sad smile.
“Are you foolish enough to think that if you hit me enough times I’ll die? Or that if I exert my magics enough then my mana will run dry? You have a lot left to learn, Ethan, and as much as I’d like to teach you, I’m afraid we are running out of time. The amount of faith points it's costing me to maintain this link is getting somewhat crazy.” She rubbed her arm with her other hand in a nervous manner, almost as if she wanted to say more, “Good luck, Ethan, you’re going to need it.”
“Wait!–” This time Ethan didn’t delay her departure, she vanished without a sound or trace that anyone was ever there. Ethan stood for a moment in a now considerably more empty lab before he slumped over in a nearby chair and started to contemplate.
~-~
Ethan realised that he had learnt a few good things, but also plenty of worrying or downright scary things from the sudden encounter. He decided not to dwell on the terrifying concept of beings that could not be killed and could never run out of energy, and instead decided to focus on solving his more current issues by developing spells from the information he had just been given.
His AI had already created a few concepts and started working on a few spells related to souls but hadn’t made much progress. Ethan's AI was more of a tool than a sapient being inside of his head, it could only be as good as the user operating it. The AI was very good at gathering data and organising it, however, having an actual sapient mind that could recognise patterns, make connections and rule out irrelevant data drastically sped up the processing ability of the AI. Without Ethan personally focusing on the creation of a spell the AI had to try to brute force it. It would simply go through all the possible combinations it could, trying to achieve the desired effect of the spell. More complex spells would take the AI a dramatically longer time to develop.
Even having Ethan's mind rule out obvious things that won’t work sped up the process of making a spell, having him personally focus on one meant that a spell could be made and tested in the matter of a few simulated hours, rather than the weeks it would take the AI on its own. Ethan thought of this process to be much like compiling a computer program, just that it relied on his mind to process the program and make it work.
The actual “hardware” the AI relied on for its processing was literally the gray matter in Ethan's head, there was very little silicone involved in the neural hardware, which was why the AI was limited in such a fashion.
The AI also had other things that limited it: the amount of ‘logical’ operations it could perform, and hence how fast it could process data greatly depended on how conscious Ethan was. If he was fully alert and the AI was just running in the background, it was limited to simple operations. It was only when Ethan allowed the AI to use more of his gray matter normally reserved for his own use that it could process more information. In a sense it worked almost like RAM in a traditional computer system. The only real difference between a physical computer and his AI was that his AI conserved information by encoding it as binary transmissions in the spike trains going through his brain’s neurons. That was all he knew, anyway.
Ethan's consciousness could be considered to be a massive hog in terms of how much of the graymatter it required, only leaving small parts for the AI to use. For this reason Ethan always tried to be as still and inactive as possible when he needed to perform a large amount of work with his AI, when he was sleeping was the best time for work to be done by the AI. Using the time dilation feature also wasn’t consequence free, it was extremely taxing on the mind, there were examples of people who quite literally dropped dead from exhaustion on Earth after using time dilation way too much.
Considering his current circumstances, where he was relying on the ability of the AI to control his body to keep him alive, AI would have less processing ability than usual. He had also been using time dilation a dangerous amount.
There was another way he could speed up the development of spells. Using a spell to test its effect in the real world rather than a simulated space would greatly improve the speed at which a spell was developed. It was what had happened with the flying spell after it had to be used in a… somewhat unexpected emergency. Analysing the real use of spells always seemed to enable more data to be gathered on the spell, especially if it worked. For this reason Ethan looked through the vast amount of soul-related data for some simple spells.
After a moment a particular one stood out.
The spell was called “Soul Vision” and according to the description was a simple spell that highlighted beings with souls in your vicinity along with the strength of the soul. It unfortunately didn’t provide much more information than that. More annoyingly was the way it would normally be cast, mind runes. Meaning Ethan wasn’t lucky enough to have been provided with fully functional primordial spells. Briefly scanning over a few more spells he saw that they were all described in non-technical ways and were always being cast via mind runes, spoken incantations, or hand gestures.
It seemed that to get any results from soul magic he would need to confront his worst enemy: hard work.
By no means was Ethan a slacker back when he was on Earth, but he certainly believed in the mindset of “put in the bare minimum effort, so that it is what people think is your best effort. They will be impressed if you ever put in more than your bare minimum”.
Like he had said to Memeta a moment ago, being in this world changed all of that attitude. Ethan finally felt a meaning to his life, and actively wanted to achieve things. No longer was he an aimless post-graduate, he could be an all-powerful wizard, great leader or amazing innovator. Or maybe all three.
With his newfound motivation, or maybe fear of failure, Ethan went at developing the spell with greater fervour than he ever had on any other spell. Ethan pieced the spell together at a rate that even surprised him, putting together the 4 dimensional programming language that primordial magic seemed to be in a way that would have even shocked his AI, if it could feel emotions, that is.
Just 30 minutes of simulated time later he had a prototype that should work, at least in theory. Using the fact that testing spells in the real world worked better for developing them than testing them in simulated space did, Ethan cast the spell without much hesitation. He didn’t worry if it would somehow kill him, he would be dead anyway if he couldn’t get something to work.
In his simulated space Ethan anxiously watched a display showing his vision. Panic briefly fluttered in Ethan’s heart as his vision darkened and he worried that something had gone wrong with the spell.
Shit, did I just make myself blind? Ethan thought with panic. He wouldn’t be surprised if it had hit some massive snag, after all he had pieced it together like a frenzied Russian trying to put together a jigsaw puzzle.
The panic washed away as he saw that he was not, in fact, blind. The world resolved itself in muted gray tones, objects were surrounded by fuzzy gray outlines and the sky was a pitch black.
Ethan then saw the points of light, hundreds of them alone in the forest beside where he flew.
His jaw hung open for not the first time in the day; it was oddly beautiful. Beyond looking pretty it served a very functional purpose. Each point of light pinpointed a being with a soul and the brightness/intensity of the light showed how much strength the soul had. Most of the points of light–souls, rather, were hard to spot from the muted grays. They were small and very dim, probably the souls of insects and other tiny creatures. The point where it started to become interesting was apparently when you reached creatures the size of a small mouse, the light given off by these souls was noticeable. Although still not very powerful.
Looking around briefly Ethan saw a much more powerful soul being highlighted, or rather two souls. Using the AI to enhance his view of the far away peak of the volcano where he currently was looking he saw what was happening, a roc was mere seconds away from decapitating a smaller avian creature.
Ethan sat and watched eagerly, curious to see what would happen to a soul when the body it is normally contained in is killed.... although he didn’t know if being excited about another being getting killed was a good thing or not.
I’m getting excited about things dying? I’m already halfway to being an evil necromancer! Ethan thought to himself in a somewhat humorous manner.
The seconds in the real world slowly ticked by as the minutes slid by in simulated reality, Ethan watched as the vague white blob of the roc collided with the smaller bird, thing? The effect was nearly instant. The impact had obviously been to much for the poor thing to handle and it had died instantly. Ethan watched in fascination as its soul seemed to “seep” out of its body and floated in a cloud where it was just killed. The “cloud” of soul seemed to start to slowly weaken as it dispersed, Ethan didn’t stay watching as it would have taken a long time to watch the entire thing. He didn’t have much of a choice apart from to stop watching, in slow motion he was thrown off course as the AI suddenly started to adjust his course to dodge another lightning bolt from the Nephilim.
Wait a minute…
Ethan commanded the AI to get a view of the Nephilim, he was suddenly much more curious as to how the Nephilim looked currently than what a Roc looked like. His head slowly turned under the AI’s control, he was just able to catch the Nephilim in the corner of his vision. His eyebrows raised in interest, it was blindly bright, so much so that he couldn’t even see a vague figure like he could with the other creatures about. This guy was just a solid glowing orb.

The message flashed on a nearby screen, Ethan found it no surprise that the light could be damaging to his eyesight, considering just how bright it was. As his vision was slowly averted from the Nephilim he could see a clear after-image of the glow in his vision, much like the ones you would get after briefly looking at the sun.
How was he expected to kill that?
Regardless, Ethan smiled to himself as he saw a cunning solution, involving the creation of a new type of soul spell that never existed throughout history, according to all the information he had just been given.
~-~
After a few more hours and massive effort on his behalf, Ethan had the spell. He’d tested it innumerable times in his simulated space but the real effects that such a spell would have were alien to him. He simply didn’t have the data and variables available to test it in the simulated space.
He would just cross his fingers and hope that it would work the first time.
Ethan leant back in his chair staring at a visual representation of the spell he had just created, the Soul Vision spell paled in comparison to the size and complexity of this one. He found it beautiful to look at, in a way that only a mathematician who found complex equations beautiful.
The spell would do more than look pretty, though. It should be Ethan's ticket to not get killed. A few more minutes had passed in the real world during his time taken to develop the spell, he was now skimming along the peak of the volcano, using natural outcroppings to provide a small amount of cover. He wouldn’t need to hide with the potentially life threatening stunt he was about to pull off.

His AI relinquished the control of his body instantly, and the world suddenly slipped back to its normal speed and he found himself back in the high speed pursuit. He didn’t wait a second before he took action.
From what he had seen so far, the Nephilim chasing him was easily able to match his speed, which made outrunning him impossible. Ethan figured he could outmaneuver him instead. So he applied the brakes, in a metaphorical sense.
The G’s of deceleration slammed into Ethan like a brick wall, the corners of his vision went black and he struggled to stay conscious as the seconds passed. He came to a full stop in less than 50 meters. As he had expected the Nephilim wasn’t able to brake as hard, shooting straight past at quite a pace. It let out another one of its screams, probably in frustration.
Ethan simply hovered in the air where he was and closed his eyes, focusing. The spell he needed to cast was complex to the degree that the AI wouldn’t be able to cast it on its own. Ethan started the arduous process of piecing it together in his mind as the Nephilim turned around and started making headway towards Ethan.
He remained perfectly still as the Nephilim approached, it was charging a powerful spell at its apparently suddenly suicidal victim. It would never get a chance to cast the spell.
It suddenly found itself hit by a strange feeling, not a physical one, but a mental one. It felt like there was a strange something that was pulling at it. Ethan simply smirked and they both went limp as the spell went into its next stage, their bodies floated a good couple dozen of meters away from each other as the battle departed the physical realm and entered the realm of the mind. Their souls were fully connected to each other and one of them was about to have a very bad time.
~-~
Samayael suddenly found himself in a strange white plane, like a blank canvas. The ‘floor’ was a slightly different colour white to the rest of the surroundings enabled him to at least stand without falling over. He took a cautious step, and it seemed that the ‘floor’ shifted with him, the all encompassing white seemingly in a sphere around him. He had no idea how he had got here at all, as all he remembered was a strange tugging at what felt like his mind and then a “fall”.
Am I dead? Did that damn human find a way to slay me?! He angrily thought to himself. Unbeknownst to him he was not dead. His and Ethan's souls were in a “Limbo” like state, in a reality between the physical world and that of death. If you were to look at the two of them floating in the sky using Soul Vision you would see their souls stretched out and “connected” together. It was exactly what Ethan intended, the only way to escape the connection would be to destroy the tenuous link that their souls shared with their own bodies.
“Well, damn. You're one ugly motherfucker.” The insult originated behind him and Samayael spun around to face the voice. Standing a good 10 meters away was the Human, wearing white robes and smiling in a self-confident manner. Samayael realised in sudden horror that he was no longer wearing his usual clothing. He was wearing the same plain white robe. His disfigured and hideous face was in plain view.
“You wretched creature!” He screeched, “What in seven hells have you done?” The human’s smile only seemed to broaden at this.
“I just levelled the playing field a little.” The human said with a smirk.
Samayael simply couldn’t contain his anger anymore, he leapt towards the Human and found out in short notice that he apparently weighed a lot less here. His jump, which should have landed him straight on top of the human took him sailing over the top of him, and he ended up landing on the opposite side the same distance away as he had just started. Reaching entirely new levels of rage he turned back around to face the human again. Instead of going for a physical attack, he started conjuring a powerful [Lightning Bolt].
Except it didn’t work, his hand gestures did nothing. The human was breaking down laughing.
“Oh man! That was too good!” he wheezed, apparently struggling for breath amid his entertainment, “I should have mentioned it, really, physics here don’t work the same way as they do in the physical world. The gravity is lower and magic doesn’t work. Our stats are also set to neutrally equal values. We’re gonna have to settle this the old fashioned way.” Ethan said before raising a fist.
Samayael didn’t understand some of the words in the mortal’s mocking words. Nevertheless, he still found himself feeling greatly insulted.
He went to leap at the Human again, this time putting less power into the jump. Unfortunately for him, Ethan moved first. Ethan only had a vague idea of how physics behaved in this separate reality. It was the one thing he truly had no idea what would happen with when he used the spell. He was learning the new rules of the place quickly, but so was Samayael.
Ethan had propelled himself straight towards him, intending to collide with him to knock him down. He had positioned his elbow to make sure that it hit first. Samayael’s eyes widened and he prepared himself to collide with the rapidly moving human, but in a surprise move with a speed that even amazed himself, he sidestepped and the human went flying by. It seemed that he would react reflexively to some things. Ethan's landing was rather graceful, He hit the floor and rolled, coming to a stop and picked himself up.
The two circled around each other, waiting for the other to make a move. Samayael made the move in the end. He took a few bounding steps, and then slid down on the floor with the intention of knocking Ethan down. Not expecting the sudden move downwards, Ethan didn’t move in time and was swept off his feet. He hit the ground hard, the breath was knocked out his lungs. He lay there trying to lever himself up. Samayael meanwhile had gotten up again from his maneuver and jumped back towards his prone victim. Pain suddenly echoed in Ethan's ribs and he went flying a good couple meters. The Nephilim had performed a plain and simple kick to the ribs while he was down. In that moment, an outside observer using Soul Vision would have seen the tether between Ethan’s body and soul, and the common connection he and the Nephilim shared warbling and being strung taut to near the point of snapping.
Ethan knew the implications of losing, his soul would quite literally end up detached from his body. He would be dead. Finding new inspiration in the fact that he didn’t want to die, he leapt to his feet just in time to see a fist from Samayael approaching his face. The Nephilim, although terrified from this unexpected situation, was having a great time. It was quite clear that the mortal hadn’t been in many fist fights. He relished in the fear that briefly shone in the mortal's eyes before his fist connected with the human’s face and sent him flying again. The human landed on his back and wasn’t moving.
Sensing that the end to… whatever this is was, was drawing near; Samayael took his time to approach the mortal. It seemed that today he would be getting the strange sceptre that he had been compelled to seek.
He shouldn’t have been counting his chickens before the eggs had hatched though; when he was but a scant few metres away from the mortal and probably mere seconds from beating him out of existence… the mortal performed some kind of fancy backflip and was once again on his feet facing the Nephilim. Worry flicked through Samayael’s expression briefly as he saw the look in the human's eyes. Gone was the scared expression, it had been replaced with a look that could be explained as nothing but cold and calculating.
Unbeknownst to the Nephilim, Ethan had just tried to activate his AI’s survival protocol. When that didn’t work, he shifted it to reconnaissance mode, and it started to bolster his perception and reaction times. It was better than nothing.
Samayael swung his fist at the mortal and instead of the swing hitting his head, Samayael found his hand clasped in the palm of the human. Before he could react further a powerful punch landed to his gut. Samayael crumpled over in pain but didn’t have much time to recover, an elbow landed itself on the back of his head, knocking him face-first onto the floor.
His nose made a sickening crunching sound as the bone inside it shattered. He screamed in pain and desperately rolled over, and almost in slow motion, he saw the foot of the human approaching his head and reacted just in time, rolling to the side and dodging the foot. He grabbed the offending leg that had just moments before threatened to cave his face in and pulled, the human lost his balance and fell.
Taking advantage of the opportunity, Samayael got up onto his feet, although no longer as steadily as before. Blood ran down his face from his broken nose and dripped onto the off-white floor, leaving a stain that starkly contrasted to the surroundings. The human had also got up in that time, pushing himself up using his arms and carrying that momentum forward to land on his feet. The human leapt at Samayael, and this time, he didn’t react in time.
Ethan landed a fierce kick to the Nephilim’s left shoulder. He fell over again and grunted in protest as he landed on his side, before the human landed on top of him and began to strangle him.
Ethan knew he had to finish this quickly, the longer their souls remained connected, the greater the chance that his soul would be damaged by the forced contact. In the end, he was risking a lot by being here, but what were his other options? The Nephilim was too powerful to fight in a fair battle.
So he had had to cheat.
And now it was paying off. The Nephilim struggled and managed to flip himself over completely.
Samayael fought mightily to stop the human’s chokehold on his neck, all to no avail, he settled for trying to choke the man in turn.
It was now a true battle of wills, and to the victor would go the spoils. In this case, survival was all that mattered.
~-~
Back in the real world, two figures levitated off the ground, connected by an invisible thin strand of spiritual energy. The unfortunate one of the pair found that the tether that linked their soul to their body snapped like an overstretched piece of string.
One was a Nephilim that had lived for years untold, and one was a young human, merely 23 years old; one would die a death horrible and cold, and the other would open their eyes to welcome back the warm embrace of the world.
~-~
[Character Sheet is not available during this cutscene]
~-~
voodooattack here, Just wanted to say I’m really thankful to die247 for all the hard work. I barely touched this chapter at all! He wrote 99.99% of it to be honest.
I’ll try to help with more than the general plotline in the future. I do want to apologize to him for my absence. But work is work. :(
~-~
Next
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