Sunday, January 25, 2015

How to Create a CentOS 7 Minimal VM on VMware Player

By popular request, here is an updated (for CentOS 7) version of an older tutorial for CentOS 6. This post provides step-by-step instructions how to:
  • create a VMware virtual machine from a CentOS-7.0-1406-x86_64-Minimal.iso using VMware Player 6.0.4 on Windows 7;
  • bring the virtual machine to a minimally usable state, i.e. to be able to connect to CentOS mirrors in order to update your new system and install additional software packages;
  • install VMware Tools 9.6.2 or open-vm-tools 9.4.0;
  • open ports with firewall-cmd.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

A Classic Example of "Broken As Designed"

This is an extremely annoying "feature" I keep stumbling upon in all kinds of software, be it customer-facing or "internal" business applications. I have been seeing this for years (if not decades) now, and it doesn't seem to be going away.

Imagine a web site that sells tours (just an easy to understand example). On a page, you see two dependent drop-down lists: one with continents and the other with countries (again, this is just an easy to understand example). Say, you select "Europe" from the first drop-down list and "Albania" from the second. The page refreshes and displays something like "Your search returned no results". You keep trying, and -- after 50+ attempts -- it turns out that the site only offers tours that begin in Germany (DE), Spain (ES), and Italy (IT). The other 50 or so European countries on the second drop-down list are there for absolutely no reason (except to annoy users). Sounds familiar, doesn't it?