How to disable reply animations in Mail.app for Mountain Lion

I have been using this trick for awhile, and there is a lot of false information out there, so I figured I should post this for posterity.  To disable that super annoying reply animation in Mail (where it slowly fades into the center of the screen) – open Terminal or iTerm2 or whatever and type:

defaults write com.apple.mail DisableReplyAnimations -bool TRUE

But wait! you say – I have seen numerous posts that say something similar. True dat – but they are all wrong (at least the many I saw). defaults for Mail (in Mountain Lion at least) is case sensitive – I was going crazy trying to get it to work, but they all said com.apple.Mail, which is incorrect – you need com.apple.mail Hopefully this saves you all some headaches.

Amazon.com eating it’s own (Cloudfront) dog food

I was curious, given the amazing rate Amazon has been improving Cloudfront, if they had decided to eat their own dog food yet and use it as the primary CDN on their crown jewel – the main Amazon.com site.  They had previously entrusted Akamai for the majority of their CDN needs.

Long story short – absolutely.  Of the 163 external resources on the main page, 74 of them are hosted on Cloudfront – compared to 46 on Akamai (the rest are a mixture of doubleclick, etc.).  That’s pretty impressive.

More detail

I used the following methodology to come up with the numbers.  My first step was to use the always-awesome Webpagetest.org to get a dump of all of the external resources – i.e. Javascript, CSS etc. (you can see my report here – to get the external resources you can click on “Raw object data” to get a CSV of each object).  From that CSV, I just wrote a quick python script that would use Dnspython on each external hostname, do a lookup, and see if the CNAME pointed to Cloudfront, Akamai, or something else.

Below is a dump of all of the URL’s, sorted by count with their hosting CDN.

g-ecx.images-amazon.com, for example, is hosted on Cloudfront:

;; ANSWER SECTION:
g-ecx.images-amazon.com. 49 IN CNAME d1ge0kk1l5kms0.cloudfront.net.
d1ge0kk1l5kms0.cloudfront.net. 14 IN CNAME d1ge0kk1l5kms0.iad12.cloudfront.net.

while z-ecx.images-amazon.com is hosted on Akamai:

;; ANSWER SECTION:
z-ecx.images-amazon.com. 60 IN CNAME z-ecx.images-amazon.com.edgesuite.net.
z-ecx.images-amazon.com.edgesuite.net. 8725 IN CNAME a1248.g.akamai.net.

Full breakdown.

g-ecx.images-amazon.com => 56 (cloudfront)
z-ecx.images-amazon.com => 27 (akamai)
images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com => 15 (akamai)
www.amazon.com => 10 (Other)
s.amazon-adsystem.com => 8 (Other)
ecx.images-amazon.com => 8 (cloudfront)
ad.doubleclick.net => 6 (Other)
c.amazon-adsystem.com => 5 (cloudfront)
pda-as.amazon.com => 4 (Other)
fls-na.amazon.com => 4 (Other)
s0.2mdn.net => 3 (Other)
d2o307dm5mqftz.cloudfront.net => 2 (cloudfront)
pda-bes.amazon.com => 2 (Other)
ads.pubmatic.com => 2 (Other)
d3l3lkinz3f56t.cloudfront.net => 2 (cloudfront)
tag.admeld.com => 1 (akamai)
c.www.endless.com => 1 (cloudfront)
image4.pubmatic.com => 1 (Other)
tap.rubiconproject.com => 1 (Other)
sis.amazon.com => 1 (Other)
bid.openx.net => 1 (Other)
ocsp.comodoca.com => 1 (Other)
cm.g.doubleclick.net => 1 (Other)
image3.pubmatic.com => 1 (Other)

Kudos to Amazon for making the move.

Why can’t Ubuntu/Canonical have a true US based mirror for us.archive.ubuntu.com?

Ubuntu’s US archive server (used by APT) always returns a /24 that is hosted in London (queried from multiple locations to make sure they weren’t using GeoIP functionality.  Side note: Verisign’s Managed DNS can help with that if you are reading this Canonical)

;; ANSWER SECTION:
us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.154
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.155
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.176
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.177
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.179
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.180
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.181
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.182
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.183
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.184
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.192
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.193
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.151
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.152
 us.archive.ubuntu.com. 600 IN A 91.189.92.153

Example MTR/Traceroute from Amazon AWS US-West

Host Loss% Snt Last Avg Best Wrst StDev
 1. ip-10-166-184-2.us-west-1.compute.internal 0.0% 4 0.4 0.6 0.3 1.4 0.5
 2. ip-10-1-4-5.us-west-1.compute.internal 0.0% 4 0.5 5.7 0.4 21.3 10.4
 3. 216.182.236.73 0.0% 4 0.7 0.7 0.6 0.7 0.1
 4. 205.251.229.107 0.0% 4 1.4 1.3 1.2 1.4 0.1
 5. 205.251.229.9 0.0% 4 2.3 8.7 2.3 20.1 8.3
 6. xe-0-0-0-0.r05.plalca01.us.bb.gin.ntt.net 0.0% 4 2.8 2.9 2.8 3.0 0.1
 7. ???
 8. ae-4.r07.snjsca04.us.bb.gin.ntt.net 0.0% 4 166.1 169.9 166.1 171.3 2.5
 9. ae-7.r20.snjsca04.us.bb.gin.ntt.net 0.0% 4 3.1 3.1 3.0 3.2 0.1
 10. ae-4.r21.asbnva02.us.bb.gin.ntt.net 0.0% 4 75.7 75.7 75.6 75.8 0.1
 11. ae-2.r23.amstnl02.nl.bb.gin.ntt.net 0.0% 4 156.8 159.9 156.8 163.7 3.5
 12. ae-1.r03.amstnl02.nl.bb.gin.ntt.net 0.0% 3 160.8 163.2 160.7 168.0 4.2
 13. te3-2-0-cr0.nik.nl.as6908.net 0.0% 3 162.9 163.7 161.2 167.1 3.1
 14. te1-4-3508-cr0.thn.uk.as6908.net 0.0% 3 172.1 190.5 172.1 206.8 17.5
 15. canonical-gw.datahop.net 0.0% 3 153.8 155.0 152.1 159.1 3.7
 16. haetae.canonical.com 0.0% 3 158.3 154.5 146.1 159.1 7.3