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>>> HOWTO: Automate Read/Write and Read/Only Mounting and Unmounting <<<

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stevejenkins is offline Old Post 06-19-2002 08:49 PM
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stevejenkins
TiVo sTeVe-o!

Registered: Jun 2002
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 61

HOWTO: Automate Read/Write and Read/Only Mounting and Unmounting

Updated August 6, 2002 - An updated version of these instructions are now included of my TiVo Newbie Hacker Guide at:

http://tivo.stevejenkins.com/

By default (and in an attempt to protect itself from curious hackers), the TiVo implementation of Linux keeps certain partitions of its file system (such as the system root) mounted with read only permissions when you log in to a bash shell. In order to make any changes to system files, install some programs, or otherwise write anything to a disk in these partitions, you need to "remount" the file system with read/write permissions.

Just for your information, the /var directory (which is stored on Partition 9) is automatically mounted as "read write." But partitions 4 and 7 (which is where startup files like rc.sysinit are most likely where your .profile file is) are mounted as read only. So if you want to change these files, you need to remount as read/write before doing so.

Remounting the file system with read/write permissions is simple enough, you can just type:

mount -o remount,rw / [ENTER]

As you could probably tell, the "rw" stands for "read write".

IMPORTANT! If you enter the above command to remount the file system, you MUST remount with read/only permissions BEFORE logging out of your TiVo. Do this by typing:

mount -o remount,ro / [ENTER]

According to Tiger and embeem of the AVS Underground, this is important because:

Tiger: If you don't remount read-only there is a small chance that a poweroff could cause corruption.

embeem: With linux, changes made to the filesystem aren't immediate, instead they're cached and written in bulk to speed up disk access. It's entirely possible that you could change rc.sysinit then reboot and loose all your changes or corrupt the filesystem if only part of your changes have been written.

There's no filesystem checks on startup for the root partition since it's expected to be readonly. This basically means that you either need to remeber to remount the root readonly (which forces a write and marks the filesystem as clean) or run the sync command (which forces a write).


Instead of typing these commands every time to log in and log out of your TiVo, however, there is an easier way! You can automate the above commands using a combination of your .profile file, aliases, scripts, and a .bash_logout file.

There are different "levels" of remount automation that you can choose from, and different types of users will choose different approaches. Here are the three main methods used to automate this process:

Method 1: Fully Automatic - your system is automatically remounted as "read/write" when you log in, and is automatically remounted as "read only" when you log out.

This method may seem very convenient (and it is...) but could possibly cause problems if you inadvertantly do something to cause the TiVo to reboot without having a chance to properly log out (thanks to wysiwyg3 for pointing this out) and could lead to potential file corruption. Use this method ONLY of you are an expert who is feeling lucky This method won't be addressed here, since if you are expert enough to know that you REALLY need this, then you're expert enough to set it up.

Method 2: Manual - using scripts, you can manually remount your file system as "read/write" when you need too, but you must remember to manually run another script to remount as "read only" before you log out. This is not the recommended method, since if you forget to remount to "read only" before logging out, you could corrupt your system.

Method 3: Semi-Automatic - with a couple of simple scripts, you can manually remount your file system as "read/write" any time you need to, and you can manually run another script to remount as "read only" at will - but as an extra safety precaution, your file system will be automatically remounted as "read only" whenever you log out. For obvious reasons, this is the recommended method, and the one that will be explained below.

How to Set Up Semi-Automatic Remounting

Before we start editing files, I will assume you already have a text editor (such as JOE) installed, and that you've manually remounted your file system with read/write permissions using the mount -o remount,rw / command (so you can make the changes I'm about to explain).

Let's start by writing a couple of simple scripts than will set the file system permissions we want. It's not a bad idea to store scripts in a directory that is in your PATH. If you haven't already set up your PATH statement, then read my how-to on the subject at http://www.tivohelp.com/

On my TiVo, I put scripts in a directory called /var/hack/scripts. If you haven't created this directory yet, type:

cd /var/hack [ENTER]

to change to the /var/hack directory, then type:

mkdir scripts [ENTER]

Now change into the scripts directory with:

cd scripts [ENTER]

Now we'll create two scripts with the JOE editor - one for remounting as "read/write" and another for remounting as "read only."

Create the first script (called makero.sh) by typing:

joe makero.sh [ENTER]

Enter the following code:

code:
#! /bin/bash mount -o remount,ro / \ && echo "File system is now READ ONLY" \ || echo "Remount Failed!"

Press CTRL-K then X to exit and save your file.

Now make the second script (called makerw.sh) by typing:

joe makerw.sh [ENTER]

Enter the following code:

code:
#! /bin/bash mount -o remount,rw / \ && echo "File system is now READ/WRITE" \ || echo "Remount Failed!"

Press CTRL-K then X to exit and save your file.

(Thanks go to wysiwig3 for the Remount Failed! code)

Once you've written both scripts, you need to chmod them so that they are executable. Do this with:

chmod 755 makerw.sh [ENTER]

and

chmod 755 makero.sh [ENTER]

or, if they are the only files in that directory, you could simply type:

chmod 755 * [ENTER]

Now that we have a couple of scripts that can remount the file system, lets create some simple aliases you can use to invoke them at will. Aliases are set up in your .profile file.

The .profile file is a file in the root directory (which is simply "/") that tells your system what your preferences are when you log in. Get to the root directory by entering the following from your bash prompt:

cd / [ENTER]

This will place you in the root directory. Next, type:

joe .profile [ENTER]

If you already have a .profile file, then JOE will open it to edit. If you don't then JOE will create one for you.

Put the following 2 lines somewhere in your .profile file:

alias rw='/var/hack/scripts/makerw.sh'
alias ro='/var/hack/scripts/makero.sh'


Then press CTRL-K then X to exit and save your file.

You're almost done! Now let's create your .bash_logout file. Linux looks for this file in your home directory and follows the instructions in there before it logs out of the shell. By default, your home directory is the root directory. Unless you've taken steps to change your home directory, you're already there since you edited your .profile file in that directory. But just to make sure, simply type:

cd [ENTER]

Typing that command with no options will always place you in your home directory, no matter where it is located.

Next, use JOE to create (or edit) your .bash_logout file:

joe .bash_logout [ENTER]

Place the following TWO lines at the top of the file:

mount -o remount,ro /
sync


According to lightn, the sync command forces a cache flush to disk and returns when it is finished.

Exit JOE and save your file with CTRL-K then X.

IMPORTANT! Make sure that when you're finished with any telnet session from now on, you end it by typing either:

exit [ENTER]

or

logout [ENTER]

and waiting until your TiVo closes the connection.

This will make sure that the .bash_logout file is parsed before your session closes. Simply closing your telnet client does not log out properly, and you are risking file corruption by doing so.

Just to be safe, manually remount your file system as read only before logging out and logging back in to test your automation settings. Do this with:

mount -o ro,remount / [ENTER]

sync [ENTER]


Now log out (using exit or logout), wait for your telnet client to close the connection, then log back in and test your settings. You should now be able to type:

rw [ENTER]

to change your file system permissions to read/write, and:

ro [ENTER]

to change them back to read only. But even if you forget to do so, your .bash_logout file is there to make sure you remount to read only before you end you telnet session, as long as you always terminate your session properly.

__________________
TiVo sTeVe-o
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 306 hrs / Lifetime
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 184 hrs / Lifetime
Running: TurboNET, Telnet, TiVoFTPd, TiVoWeb, & TiVoPHP!
TiVo Newbie Hacking How-To Guide
TiVo Community Theme for TiVoWeb
My Home Theater

Last edited by stevejenkins on 06-12-2003 at 10:35 AM

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wysiwig3 is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 12:23 AM
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wysiwig3
Member

Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Kirkland, WA, USA
Posts: 12

Flag on that play

I'm not sure this is a good idea to follow here. Nice idea but the implementation could do to you exactly what you're trying to avoid. I know I do, and I imagine many others as well, telnet into the tivo to check on things, start tools, etc, but not necessarily change things in the root partition. I believe the majority of folks are using the /var/hack directory to place their stuff and /var is mounted read-write by default. Rarely have I ever had the need to edit anything under the / filesystem since I setup my rc.sysinit file.

By having that filesystem mounted rewrite just by logging in, I leave it exposed if I crash the TiVo doing anything else somewhere else. For example, a few minutes ago I accidentally rebooted the box while trying to terminate a non-responsive TivoWeb process. My actions obviously didn't work as planned b/c I was booted from my connection as the TiVo instantly decided to reboot.

I never had a chance to logout correctly, and thus if I were using this implementation the root filesystem would never have been remounted read-only.

I think you would be better off making two aliases in your bashrc file to create a shortcut command for switching between RO and RW modes on the partition. The logout code could probably stay, just as a backup incase joe user forgets to manually reset the partition RO. Perhaps it could be written to check to see if the mode is currently RW, although I don't think there's any issues in remounted RO from a RO state.

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supervhs is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 04:43 AM
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supervhs
Member

Registered: Jul 2001
Location: Melbourne, Fl
Posts: 3

I added the following alias commands to my startup alias list to make mounting and unmounting easier:

alias modroot='. /var/hack/modroot.tcl'
alias modend='. /var/hack/modend.tcl'

# asp Modroot 12/23/01
#! /bin/bash
alias mkrw='mount / -o rw,remount'
alias mkro='mount / -o ro,remount'


# asp Endmod 4/28/02
#! /bin/bash
alias mkrw='echo disabled'
alias mkro='echo disabled'

This way, I enable my short cuts while I am editing
then disable them when I am done.

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stevejenkins is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 05:56 AM
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stevejenkins
TiVo sTeVe-o!

Registered: Jun 2002
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 61

Based on wysiwyg3's advice, I've also made some scripts, but I went about them a bit differently than supervhs.

I added the following two aliases to my .profile:

alias rw='makerw.tcl'
alias ro='makero.tcl'


And those two scripts (which are in /var/hack/scripts which is in my PATH) are as follows:

makero.tcl is:

#! /bin/bash
mount -o remount,ro /
echo File system is now READ ONLY


and makerw.tcl is:

#! /bin/bash
mount -o remount,rw /
echo File system is now READ/WRITE


I removed the auto-mount to rw from my .profile, but I left in the auto-mount to ro in the .bash_logout, just in case I forget to do it

I'll edit the above howto to offer this option, too. Thanks for the feedback, guys!

__________________
TiVo sTeVe-o
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 306 hrs / Lifetime
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 184 hrs / Lifetime
Running: TurboNET, Telnet, TiVoFTPd, TiVoWeb, & TiVoPHP!
TiVo Newbie Hacking How-To Guide
TiVo Community Theme for TiVoWeb
My Home Theater

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Carlton Bale is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 10:19 AM
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Carlton Bale
Unoriginal Username

Registered: Dec 2001
Location: Indianapolis, IN USA
Posts: 66

Another helpful How-To from Steve Jenkins. This information has now been added to the TivoHelp.com how-to site.

Edit: The updates have been added version has been posted.
Edit: The new updates (confirming remount failed) have been added.

__________________
-Carlton Bale
Philips DSR6000 DirecTivo v3.1.0, 120 hours, TurboNet, etc.
CarltonBale.com -- my personal home page

Last edited by Carlton Bale on 06-21-2002 at 08:45 AM

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stormsweeper is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 10:45 AM
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stormsweeper
How *you* doin'?

Registered: Nov 2001
Location: NYC, USA
Posts: 443

um, if they're shell scripts, you should give them a .sh extension - they're not TCL scripts, after all.

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Lightn is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 10:52 AM
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Lightn
Senior Member

Registered: Jun 2000
Location:
Posts: 41

If you are going to do an automatic mount/unmount on login/logout (which I don't recommend), then the .bash_logout has a problem.

quote:

sleep 10
mount -o remount,ro /


That will not accomplish what you say in the comments. What you want is:

mount -o remount,ro /
sync

Sync forces a cache flush to disk and returns when it is finished.

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stevejenkins is offline Old Post 06-20-2002 11:44 AM
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stevejenkins
TiVo sTeVe-o!

Registered: Jun 2002
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 61

stormsweeper: Right you are. Changed. Thx.

Lightn: Good to know. Duly edited. Thx.

Carlton: Please update your site with this new edit (I've also added a chmod 755 section that I realized I neglected...)

__________________
TiVo sTeVe-o
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 306 hrs / Lifetime
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 184 hrs / Lifetime
Running: TurboNET, Telnet, TiVoFTPd, TiVoWeb, & TiVoPHP!
TiVo Newbie Hacking How-To Guide
TiVo Community Theme for TiVoWeb
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wysiwig3 is offline Old Post 06-21-2002 04:51 AM
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wysiwig3
Member

Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Kirkland, WA, USA
Posts: 12

The how-to is looking a lot safer now. Here's one more though on the two remount scripts you posted.

quote:

#! /bin/bash
mount -o remount,rw /
echo File system is now READ/WRITE



Just from an accuracy point of view, your echo statement will be display regardless of whether the preceeding mount suceeded or failed. You might consider something like this:

code:
#! /bin/bash mount -o remount,rw / \ && echo "File system is now READ/WRITE" \ || echo "Remount failed"


The && and || symbols equate to AND and OR, so you can read the statement in pseudo-english as "mount ... AND (if it works) echo 'it works' OR echo 'something broke'". You could even omit the last line, but don't forget to remove the backslash character at the end of the line above; that character means continue on next line (btw).

EDIT: changed the forum block from PHP to CODE so that it renders correctly. Admins, why the hell can't the regular text even have a backslash in it? Double backslashes don't work either...

Last edited by wysiwig3 on 06-21-2002 at 10:31 PM

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Carlton Bale is offline Old Post 06-21-2002 09:20 AM
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Carlton Bale
Unoriginal Username

Registered: Dec 2001
Location: Indianapolis, IN USA
Posts: 66

wysiwig3,

I receive the following error when I run the script file you posted:

/var/hack/scripts/makerw.sh: line 3: syntax error near unexpected token `&'

/var/hack/scripts/makerw.sh: line 3: ` && echo "File system is now READ/WRITE"
'

Any ideas as to the cause?

__________________
-Carlton Bale
Philips DSR6000 DirecTivo v3.1.0, 120 hours, TurboNet, etc.
CarltonBale.com -- my personal home page

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wysiwig3 is offline Old Post 06-21-2002 10:27 PM
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wysiwig3
Member

Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Kirkland, WA, USA
Posts: 12

updated entry

quote:
Originally posted by Carlton Bale
I receive the following error when I run the script file you posted...


Sorry, I didn't noticed the forum's syntax-colored-highlighted block dropped the trailing backslash symbols...which should've made my last paragraph quite confusing. Again, all of that code needs to be processed as one line so it could all be appended together (without the backslash symbols) or as it is where the backslashes lets you break up one big long line into more readable ones.

The code is fixed above.

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Carlton Bale is offline Old Post 06-22-2002 12:55 AM
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Carlton Bale
Unoriginal Username

Registered: Dec 2001
Location: Indianapolis, IN USA
Posts: 66

wysiwig3, thanks for the follow-up. This is a useful addition. I'll perform another update to include it at tivohelp.com.

__________________
-Carlton Bale
Philips DSR6000 DirecTivo v3.1.0, 120 hours, TurboNet, etc.
CarltonBale.com -- my personal home page

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stevejenkins is offline Old Post 06-28-2002 02:36 AM
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stevejenkins
TiVo sTeVe-o!

Registered: Jun 2002
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 61

Thanks, wysiwig3! I've edited the HOWTO to include your code, and given you props

__________________
TiVo sTeVe-o
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 306 hrs / Lifetime
Sony SVR-2000 TiVo (v3.0) @ 184 hrs / Lifetime
Running: TurboNET, Telnet, TiVoFTPd, TiVoWeb, & TiVoPHP!
TiVo Newbie Hacking How-To Guide
TiVo Community Theme for TiVoWeb
My Home Theater

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pauldy is offline Old Post 06-29-2002 08:49 PM
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pauldy
New Member

Registered: Feb 2002
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 11

I just saw this thread and figured there might be people wanting to be "morons" and live on the edge just having the automatic mounting and remounting of the drive when they login being able to login more than once an only remount the drive ro when the last client logs out. I have some simple scripts sthat I wrote than do just that so I figured might as well post them here for others.

.profile entries

code:
# Setup color vars export NORMAL="\033[0m" export BLACK="\033[0;30m" export GRAY="\033[1;30m" export RED="\033[1;31m" export GREEN="\033[1;32m" export YELLOW="\033[1;33m" export BLUE="\033[1;34m" export PINK="\033[1;35m" export CYAN="\033[1;36m" export WHITE="\033[1;37m" function mountIfRO() { text=`cat /proc/mounts | grep root | cut --delim=" " --fields=4` if test "$text" == "ro" then echo -n "Mounting FileSystem Read/Write " mount -o remount,rw / && echo -e "[$GREEN OK$NORMAL ]" || echo -e "[$RED FAILED$NORMAL ]" fi } function lastConnection() { let x=0 for connection in `grep " 23:" /proc/net/tcp | grep -v local_address | cut --delim=" " --fields=1,2,3,4,5 | grep -v 00000000:0000 | cut --delim=" " --fields=3` do let x=$x+1 done if test $x -lt 2 then return 0 else return 1 fi } function toggleRoot() { rootStatus=`cat /proc/mounts | grep root | cut --delim=" " --fields=4` case "$rootStatus" in "ro") echo -n "Mounting FS Read/Write " mount -o remount,rw / && echo -e "[$GREEN OK$NORMAL ]" || echo -e "[$RED FAILED$NORMAL ]" ;; "rw") echo -n "Mounting FS ReadOnly " mount -o remount,ro / && echo -e "[$GREEN OK$NORMAL ]" || echo -e "[$RED FAILED$NORMAL ]" ;; *) echo "$RED There was a problem finding your root partition or it returned a status that wa snot understood.\n" ;; esac } mountIfRO


.bash_logout code
code:
if lastConnection then echo -n "Remounting FileSystem ReadOnly" sync mount -o remount,ro / && echo -e "\t[$GREEN OK$NORMAL ]" || echo -e "\t[$RED FAILED$NORMAL ]" fi

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pilott is offline Old Post 01-19-2004 01:36 PM
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pilott
New Member

Registered: Jan 2004
Location: San Jose
Posts: 6

I created this little script for editing a system file

#!/bin/bash

/var/hack/scripts/makerw.sh
elvis $1
/var/hack/scripts/makero.sh

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gtthndr is offline Old Post 01-19-2004 08:45 PM
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gtthndr
New Member

Registered: Jan 2004
Location:
Posts: 22

what is the command to list the directory contents????

NEWBIE....

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pahunt is offline Old Post 01-19-2004 08:48 PM
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pahunt
TiVo Forum Special Member

Registered: Apr 2003
Location: Somerset, England
Posts: 1526

quote:
Originally posted by gtthndr
what is the command to list the directory contents????

NEWBIE....



ls

or to see file permissions and sizes as well

ls -l

__________________
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gtthndr is offline Old Post 01-19-2004 09:04 PM
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gtthndr
New Member

Registered: Jan 2004
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When I try to remount I get...

bash-2.02# mount -o remount ,rw /
mount: warning: cannot change mounted device with a remount

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gtthndr is offline Old Post 01-19-2004 09:06 PM
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gtthndr
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Registered: Jan 2004
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bash-2.02# ls
bash: ls: command not found

that is what I get when I try LS

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LampyDave is offline Old Post 01-19-2004 10:02 PM
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LampyDave
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Registered: Sep 2003
Location: Cardiff, UK
Posts: 35

quote:
ls: command not found


You'll be needing to read and follow the relevant instructions in Steve's excellent walk through to networked TiVo hacking. It can be found at

http://tivo.stevejenkins.com

Follow the top link and all will be well.

The mounting thing I would guess is because there shouldn't be a space between "remount" and the comma. But that's all covered in the page of wisdom that the link will take you to.

Cheers,

Dave

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