Oh you can do that?: vSphere Platform Services Controller (PSC) topology and Omnigraffle

A little while ago William Lam published a little python script called extract_vsphere_deployment_topology.py that basically lets you export your current vSphere PSC topology as a DOT (graph description language) file. Great stuff, and in itself useful as is, especially if you run it through webgraphviz.com as William suggests.

The thing is, you might want to edit the topology map, change colours and fonts, and even move the boxes around, after you get the output. If you have a large environment, you might want to combine all your PSC topologies into a single document? It turns out, that’s pretty easy to do!

Omnigraffle Pro imports the DOT files natively, and lets you play around with the objects as if they were drawn in Omnigraffle from the beginning. Save the output from the script somewhere as a .dot file. Then open Omnigraffle and go to File -> Open and select the file.Screenshot 2016-05-22 21.10.12

Now, select the Hierarchical option, and you’ll get a nicely formatted canvas with your PSC components already laid out inside of Omnigraffle. Now you can edit it at will!

Screenshot 2016-05-22 21.13.56

As far as I can tell, this isn’t possible with Microsoft Visio, as it doesn’t support the DOT format, but you could always save it as a Visio file with Omnigraffle if you need to sent it to your more Microsoft inclined friends.

I’m sure there are more fun to be had with these DOT files, it’s just text files after all, perhaps someone can even code up a script that converts them to Visio .vdx files or some other format that Visio can import natively.


Nerdgasm: Combining Todoist and Evernote, because awesome

A while back I declared Evernote bankruptcy, even if I managed to misspell it while doing so:

  The thing is, I really want to use Evernote in a proper and organised manner. The problem is; I was completely unable to do so, mostly since I had no clear idea on the how, the when and the why back when I started using it many moons ago. In the end, all I had was a lot of unorganised notes, with no clear idea or taxonomy. So, to get myself out of the mess I had made, I decided to delete all my notebooks, and stacks, and move every single note I had into a new @graveyard notebook. I then decided on a new top-level notebook hierarchy that I wanted to make general enough to fit most notes into, but still keep it reasonably structured. For now, I’ve decided on the following structure (I’ve excluded a couple here, but you get the gist):

  • @Graveyard
  • @Inbox
  • @To-Do
  • @To-Blog
  • Personal
  • Professional
  • Clippings


  So far this works really well, and it’s easy to find a fitting notebook to place new notes in. I have yet to really do the required cleanup of tags to also make sure that I’m consistently using a sensible taxonomy, but I’m getting there slowly. For more tips on how you can organize Evernote, check out Matt Brenders The Non-obvious Guide to Evernote Awesomeness. I clearly need to have a closer look to the suggestions Matt has about using tags! I realize that the title of this post has nothing to do with how I managed to get control over my Evernote content again, but rather how I use it in conjunction with Todoist. So here it is; As with most other popular online services, both Todoist and Evernote integrate with IFTTT.  I’ve set up a recipe that automatically creates a new note in my @To-Do notebook when a new task is added in Todoist: IFTTT Recipe: Create To-Do note in Evernote from tasks in Todoist connects todoist to evernote

Pre-formatted notes like this makes it easy to fill out detailed information for the task in Evernote, without cluttering the Todoist tasks with information that is better stored and indexed in Evernote.

The pre-formatted notes looks like this:

Evernote 2014-12-03 17-34-14


In addition to this, I’ve created a saved search in Evernote called “Daily Review (any:any: created:day updated:day)” that shows me all notes that has been updated the same day, to give me a quick overview. Not quite GTD, but better than total anarchy and disarray.

I also have IFTTT recipes for putting the tweets I favorite into Evernote, so I reference and move the ones I want to inspect further into either @To-Read or @To-Learn.

So far, so good. At least there is some level of organization to my Evernote madness now, and that has to be a good thing.

Featured Photo by Zeusandhera

Check for OS X Updates Automatically

Yeah, I admit it. I want OS X Mavericks, and I want it now.

Unfortunately, it´s not available yet from Software Update. So instead of manually checking every 5 minutes or so, I decided to create a small bash script that does it for me.

It´s very, very simple, but I think it does the job:

First off, pop into Terminal and get root access:

h0bbel::h0bair { ~ }-> sudo su -

Then create a small bash script, I named mine update.sh, that contains the following:

while true
softwareupdate -l
sleep 60

Change it to be executable by running

chmod +x update.sh

Then run the script, to have softwareupdate run over and over again (60 seconds after it completes) until you break it with ctrl-c

h0bair:~ root# ./update.sh
Software Update Tool
Copyright 2002-2010 Apple

No new software available.

At least I now get warning once it´s available. I can has Mavericks nao?