Welcome to my webspace!

Hi, I'm Helenah, a keyboard and command line oriented hacker (as in tinkerer) and biohacker (as in hacker of biology) whose been using GNU/Linux since 2005 (kernel 2.4) as a daily driver and been a member of the Ctrl-C club since 2023-02-11 21:10 UTC, that's when my shell account was reported active via email. Because of my experience with GNU/Linux and the fact I'm a Ctrl-C club member, you are free to ask me for help at any time though I don't know everything and I expect you to read manuals. :3

I actually share traits with a culture of people who call themselves VUAs (Veteran Unix Admins) though not all the traits, everyone has individuality, despite the fact Unix is in the name, we do not limit ourselves to unices and most of us use Unix-like systems (Linux and modern BSD) as our daily driver, we are also capable of fixing Windows systems though we don't like to admit that we have knowledge about Windows because it breaks everything we stand for that's called the UNIX philosophy.

Choice of software

Below is a list of my software preferences, if you would like to know any of my other software preferences then just ask which and I will update this list.

Software Type Software Name
GNU/Linux distribution Devuan
Init System OpenRC
Shell Z shell (Zsh)
Window Manager i3 (Previously dwm)
Terminal Emulator URxvt (Previously st)
Terminal Multiplexer tmux (Previously GNU screen)
IRC Client WeeChat (Previously Irssi)
Digital Audio Workstation LMMS
Raster Graphics Editor GIMP
Vector Graphics Editor Inkscape

The Linux distributions I have used over the years and probably more: Debian, Ubuntu, CentOS, Arch Linux, Artix, Manjaro, Devuan, PCLinuxOS, Fedora, RHEL, SME Server, Knoppix, Feather Linux, CoreOS, OpenWRT, DD-WRT, TomatoWRT, FreeNAS, Proxmox, Sugar, Gentoo, Raspbian, Raspberry Pi OS, and DSLinux.

Via having used soo many GNU/Linux distributions, Unix-like, Unix-derived and unices, I can easily navigate around any Unix-like system like a rat in a maze providing I have access to it, I'll read the man pages and what not. I have formed strong software preferences that rarely changes these days.

I will always have a web browser ordeal and that's just something I have to live with: I've tried many web browsers over the years and even jumped to and from, I have a few favourites but none are truly suitable. I've tried w3m, chrome, chromium, firefox, pale moon, opera, safari, qutebrowser, surf, netsurf, netscape, midori, dillo, lynx, links, elinks, links2, iron, vivaldi, you name it, I've probably used it.

I'm not a fan of systemd but I won't shoot you down on it if you use systemd yourself, elitism is bad, bad, bad, bad.

Choice of hardware

I am a proud Lenovo Thinkpad X230 (2012 model) laptop owner, they are not as good as the original IBM thinkpads but they are still solid, kept a lot of the original style and make a great hackers toy. Clicking here will take you to the X230 page on ThinkWiki where you can read up on its specifications, look through its manuals and read up on hacks you can do to it. You will be surprised at how hackable thinkpads are despite being proprietary devices manufactured by a big corporation (First IBM, now Lenovo) though I do hear the more modern ones are not as good quality. My most favourite Thinkpad X230 modification is the installation of a Thinkpad X220 (2000 model) keyboard which replaces the island keys with better quality keys, click here for information on this modification and how to do it.

Please note: A Thinkpad laptop is not the only device I own, it's just lets talk to hackers about what I have that can be hacked around a lot. More devices to be added.

Some things on hacker culture

I am happy with my title of hacker, that's what I am however I'm not happy with how the media stereotypes us as hackers who want to break into systems, do harm to others and keep vulnerabilities for ourselves, this is called a blackhat hacker by the way and the act of breaking into a system is called cracking and not hacking, we are not all criminals, most of us are innocent tinkerers, most of us don't even have anything to do with cyber security and cyber attacks, most of us just have fun playing with technologies in creative and harmless ways and do great things for the world, click here for more information on hacker culture and its spectrum of subcultures to clear up your misunderstandings if you had any.

In case you're curious, click here for an article authored by Eric S. Raymond and Rick Moen titled "How To Ask Questions The Smart Way". This supports people with no experience in the matter on how to properly ask a hacker questions. It works in mailing lists, on forums, in FAQs, on IRC and pretty much everywhere, where there is a hacker community.

Other interests

I like Photography and own a Canon EOS 1300D camera and I also do music production, particularly New Wave (80s Synthwave scene) and various 90s house genres. Absolutely love the Roland TR-808, LinnDrum, Yamaha DX7 and Korg M1 instruments so you'll hear these a lot in my music.

Where to find me

You can find me on IRC at TildeChat and my nickname is Helenah, feel free to drop me a message and don't forget to register your nickname.

Note to users of the write command: Please ask me for permission before you use the write command to contact me, at least check for a PTY I'm idle on with the finger command so that you're not throwing messages over what I'm doing, plus there is a chance that messages sent to me this way don't get seen. Using the mail command would be a more reliable solution.

$ echo 'Message here' | mail -s 'Subject here' helenah@ctrl-c.club

You won't see much thought put into this website because coding CLI applications and shell scripts as well as making configuration files and administrating GNU/Linux servers is where my expertise is. Not all hackers are the same, we have different interests just like everyone else, we have different levels of knowledge from each other, you could ask Brian and Dave about foo but there is a chance that only Brian or Dave can provide an answer regarding foo.