is placing ads in its motd when you ssh in.

The way it fetches this ad is by doing

USER_AGENT="curl/$curl_ver $lsb $platform $cpu $uptime cloud_id/$cloud_id"

curl -A "$USER_AGENT" ...

In other words, Ubuntu is sending Canonical tracking information so it can serve you an ad.

This doesn't exactly run every time you log in (it caches the ad in /var/cache), but still... phoning home for a frickin ad?

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Oh, great, and this whole mechanism is part of base-files. You can't just delete a package to get rid of it, since it's a core, essential package.

If you want to get rid of it, do this:

sudo chmod -x /etc/update-motd.d/50-motd-news

Deleting the file would probably just reinstall it next time you do an upgrade, but removing its exec permissions should be more persistent.

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@JordiGH seems really obnoxious that they couldn't leave something as basic as the MOTD alone

@JordiGH it might get restored, but you could use chattr to stop even root from being able to fix it

@JordiGH But, waitaminute, surely if you set a custom MOTD that script won't overwrite it? Otherwise they'd be killing an important feature of SSHD for admins of multi-user systems?

@cathal Hm, I'm not sure. It might!

But looks like you can also disable it other ways:

patdavid.net/2018/08/ubuntu-ss

@JordiGH
And people still wonder why Ubuntu get so much flak from the rest of the community.

@JordiGH
Unrelated, but I also did this to {10-help-text,51-cloudguest,80-livepatch} because they were annoying/unhelpful.

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