Category Archives: Technical

QNAP suprise – The QNAP Q´Center (QCenter)

Imagine my surprise when I stumbled upon one of the actually useful “addons/plugins/apps” that was available from the official repo.

It’s for managing multiple QNAP NAS units. And It’s light – in features so far, but it actually gives some graphs, possibility to create rules, and generic alarm settings!

captureqnapqcenter

So, stepping to the left, we got the goodie-list:

Dashboard – main start/stop page, a … dashboard with some graphs and general shorthand info.
Server – the servers in question – pop in a new one and enjoy.
Report – Aha – here comes the fun stuff – get reports on your disks / usage / shared vols / storage pools / performance ( IOPS etc ) / temp / fan / S.M.A.R.T alarms… Me like.
Log – system logs all in one place. Nifty.
Rule – this is were it gets interesting –
capturecreaterule

You can set general settings for specific NAS devices ( you select them in the previous screens for creating a rule). You can also group the rules inte rulesets.

Firmware lib – Check for firmware of the connected devices – from the menu. Dunno yet if the upgrade part works straight of here.
Notification – Get your alerts, get your alerts here! Well, create your triggers and outbound parties (SNMP traps / email ) here.
Settings – Contains nice sub-menus – Account | LDAP Configuration | AD Configuration | Patch | Export/Import settings | Remote Backup | Update Agent.

All in all – you can manage your administrative accounts straight off here, your LDAP / AD configs, specific patches, export and import QCenter settings, setup remote backup (rsync) from this central place as well (your hand made local settings will not show here ), and of course make sure that the agent package that gets installed upon first handshake hold a valid version.

Give yourself an headache – upgrade from apache 2.2 to apache 2.4

Yeah. I am old. And I do fancy other webbies than Apache. But, since I have found setups to work over a decade ( until now..) configuration wise (minor mods since first 2.x release..) – the “new” 2.4 release did kick me in the nuts quite well.. Still working through the config changes that has occurred and figuring out what needs to change to improve and secure. At least – it’s all up again, and works in some fashion ;).

Dump1090

So I was bored one day (happens ever so often), Put up a Raspberry Pi with a SDR, and tuned in with Dump1090. Tracking airplanes have never been easier, or more enjoyable when you know you are getting the data out of the sky yourself.

screenshot-from-2016-09-20-200659

Tinkering with the cheaper Intel Compute Stick

So, a while ago Intel released a “Intel Compute Stick”. It’s kindof tiny, doesn’t perform perfectly – but is quite a nice, quiet alternative for those whack-a-terminal-an-stream-some-music nights.

Problem is – I don’t care that much for the Ubuntu 14.04 LTS pre-loaded (yes, I am talking about the version with only 1Gb mem, and whatissit – 8gb storage?).

Good thing is – if you can survive with the built in realtek wifi, only thing you need to take heed to is the Intel drivers, from the proprietary locked down section of the binary world (or, almost – they are available in slightly different format..).

So far, you can grab ’em from https://01.org/linuxgraphics.

Problem is – if you really wanna use the built in wifi, mail realtek. Yes.. email – to get drivers. It’s lovely.

http://www.realtek.com.tw/contact/contentView.aspx?Langid=1&PNid=1&PFid=4&Level=2

Wireless LAN ICs
Email: wlanfae@realtek.com

There is someone that seems to have put the source on git for a working wifi-driver;

do the following;

sudo apt-get install build-essential linux-headers-generic git
git clone https://github.com/codeTom/rtl8723bs.git
cd rtl8723bs
make
sudo make install
sudo depmod -a
sudo modprobe r8723bs

Either way, I got it cheap – works – and runs. Yay.

Raspberry Pi 3, WiFi gone with the wind (but now back).

I dunno… Is it just me, or did the wireless just go away with the latest build of Rasbpian (as of today 2016-08, build from before summer).
Tried it out on two different 3´s – with both the full blown version and the lite one. Did not matter. There’s bluetooth, but no wifi.
The module(s) is loaded – but to no avail.

Been using both ones with the official Pi Screen. Been pondering if there is a bad glitch with not powering stuff separately ( power connected over GPIO ).

I’ll try it out without the interconnect and power them separately…

The whole of the interwebs seems to know nothing about it. What have I done that no one else seems to have noticed?

EDIT/UPDATE:
So … Just reconnected the lab-machine again after having it connected over ethernet, and guess what – the drivers seems to be back, for some odd reason. Odd… Odd.. Odd..

EDIT2/UPDATE2:

Seems to be related to power consumtion.. It’s a bit weird.

Elari Cardphone.

Needed a temporary phone, so I ran to the store and got amazed. A small “anti-smartphone” (in plaintext – it’s just a phone..).
It does voice, sms, got bluetooth, “mass storage” (half a mb!), and com-port features.

20160511_142608

Tinkering a bit with it proves that the soft keys are a bit of a burden, and proves that the older hard keys, even tho smaller back in the day are much more easy to use.
The display – well, it is tiny and the viewing angle is hilarious.

http://elari.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Manual-CardPhone_English.pdf

The fun continues. There is firmware updates on their homepage – divided into two – one for the new display, and one for the old. I have NO idea what is what…

Elari-cardphone

But, besides that, it got bluetooth 3. That is a good thing!

Wack up your laptop or whatnot with bluetooth – and use it as a handheld… Tested with skype – and, guess what – it works ;).

Now, I have MicroSIP on the same machine against my asterisk server. Guess what, works great too.

Yes – I have to use the dial parts in the applications, but thats fine. It is the answering part that is my main concern, because that does not work with skype, nor does the hangup. I am currently unable to test how MicroSIP holds up the bargain chip when it comes to answering and hanging up…

Jumping straight into the communication part – the firmware parts contains serial drivers, the flash tool, and of course the firmware itself.

Charing is amuzing as well. The tiny device got no real communicationports, or ports what so ever. It do have a few connections on the back (you do get a gel like cover to use on a daily basis for protecting it).

One day I might find the time to dig deeper into this little fellow. But for now, I will use it as … a phone!

The enjoyment of Trend OfficeScan and manual scans…

So, Trend got their lightweight, superduper client side AV called OfficeScan. It got a graphical update now with version 11.
And with the help of “wofielauncher.exe” you can trigger manual scans in another manner than from the management console – that only handles one single entity of scheduled scans for any given target machine..

Drawbacks here would be that the manual scan settings are limited –
You cannot de-select system standard paths, ie – %windir%, %programfiles%.
You cannot specify specific targets, ie – c:\PATH.
You have to specify the target drive with lower case, ie c:\ …
You have to be mad to think that this is a good behaviour – it is 2016, not 2006 1996 ….

Boho, Netflix and Spotify. Boho, DRM.

I’ve had Netflix for years. Why? I could stream content to my devices – sadly not the devices I wanted to in the beginning, and of course – no “offline” mode. Because, DRM, and… yes. DRM.

Not until Chrome chewed some on it did it expand to the linux platform in a while back. It has never been a great experience, but good enough to hang around for and be able to time to time catchup on series or some odd bad movie you never thought of watching.

Tonight however I just got fed up. I was unable to start streaming anything – because they had decided I was either using a proxy or a VPN connection. Assholes. I was using neither – if any – I did use VPN to get home and be able to watch the same shit as before back in the days when I traveled heavily.

Enough. No more sponsoring DRM and stupidity.

Sadly, I have realized that paying for spotify is not worth it either. I will now save roughly 200 sek (est. US $22) per month, that I can place on other things. Woopie.

Presenting the PiWall and the PiES.

It has been a bumpy ride for the PiWall setup.
Memory-cards dying all over the place kinda killed the first PiWall and a few of the PiES.
The first incarnation of the PiWall held a bridge feature with wireless included with WPA2. Sadly due to stability issues with previous power supply I had to ditch it before – I might rebuild it again now that I have a new fancy supply attached.
I did also loose my nifty compiled squid proxy that made updating less costing bandwith wise (it has to be slim in space, power and bandwith – it´s raspberry pi´s! ).
However, now they are finally in order, and ready to perform all the fun stuff I want.

20160430_163750

20160430_163759

20160430_163812

The main layout goes as follows;
All PiES uses rasbian as base – some the full featured version, and some the lite release. Hardware wise they are Raspberry Pi B, B+ and raspberry pi 2´s.

Top – PiWall – simple firewall gateway with NAT. Uses NTOP for enjoyment over the webs. Featureset includes Gateway (NAT), DHCP,DNS. Will include Squid against attached usb stick on Pi-Blue.
Pi-Blue – the blue cable – for the Pi with the touchscreen that is attatched to the side. Graphs realtime with iftop. Will serve usb stick over NFS for additional r/w features (ie, squid).
Pi-Orange – Master node and will be used as controller for all. Any actions onwards will be directed from this baby.
Pi-Purple – Slave node.
Pi-Yellow – Slave node.
Pi-Green – slave node.
pies-switch – a “smart” netgear switch with a webinterface
On the side – One to many USB “psu”. Makes it easier..

Next step will be to re-compile glusterFS – I had it partially working until two SD-cards died…

I will try to in the future add Partial PXE-boot-like enviroment. Meaning that only data on the SD-card locally will be the needed boot-part – the rest will not reside on it, making the setup more durable and totally minimizing writes to the SD-cards.