Categories: "Home" or "Appliances" or "Broadband" or "AT&T DSL" or "Cox HSI" or "RoadRunner" or "Furnishings" or "Healthcare" or "Outdoor" or "Safety & Security"

Pages: 1 ... 4 5 6 7 9 11 12 13 14 ... 25

08/29/10

  01:40:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 389 words  
Categories: Software, Networking, Cox HSI, AT&T DSL, Ubuntu

ddclient & squid

In the aftermath of the summer storm of August 13th, (hmmm, totally missed that it was a Friday the 13th), I made a tweak to my ddclient config for updating dyndns for my DSL line. Because I found that it wasn't able to update the IP change while Cox was down.

Couldn't find a way to make ddclient to bind to the local IP that routes out by DSL (or use non-default gateway). But, since I have squid proxy on the same box...and depending on what port I come in on, it can use either of my connections.

I set proxy=box.lhaven.homeip.net:3128

Couldn't use localhost, because ddclient does some kind of validation to require an fqdn+port, and localhost isn't an fqdn. And, yes, I use my dyndns domain as my home domain. So I can have bookmarks that'll work whether I'm at home or on the road &#59;D

But, this change wasn't tested...as it has been less than 28 days for a refresh, and no IP change.

That was until this morning, when my IP did change.

The updates weren't working....seems that ddclient wants to do SSL all the way or not at all. No using an http proxy to connect out on SSL. But, I didn't feel like sending my dyndns password out non-SSL.... So, after some thought, I decided I would figure out how to set up SSL on squid.

I made the necessary configuration change, but no go. Seems that ubuntu doesn't distribute squid with SSL, because squid and openssl have incompatible open source licenses. So, I did a quick search to find the ubuntu way of rebuilding it from source.

apt-get source squid
apt-get build-dep squid
apt-get install devscripts build-essential fakeroot
cd squid-2.7.STABLE7
vi debian/rules
     Add --enable-ssl \ to “# Configure the package” section
debuild -us -uc -b
cd ..
dpkg -i squid??? squid-common???

Change to proxy=box.lhaven.homeip.net:3218, and it worked. :cool:

Full story »

08/14/10

  08:13:47 pm, by The Dreamer   , 120 words  
Categories: TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite, Cox HSI

Wow Cox can be pretty snappy

So, I purchased the episode that I missed last night due to the storm taking out Cox from Amazon Video On Demand on my TiVo Premiere.

And, later I noticed this big download spike for my router. At first I thought it was a 'bug' (overflow/wraparound/reset), but it was more than just a spike. And, after some thought, it fell within what powerboost could give me.

So here's the picture for prosperity....

Meanwhile, I wonder when 'regular' Video on Demand is coming to my TiVo Premiere, seeing as I'm on Cox.

Pages: 1· 2

  02:44:34 pm, by The Dreamer   , 1044 words  
Categories: General, Time Warner/Cox Cable, Wireless/iPhone, VoIP, Networking, TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite, Cox HSI, AT&T DSL, Broadband

Summer Storm & UPS Shuffle and more...

So, yesterday afternoon...there was quite the thunderstorm.

I could see that the power was flickering at home, VNC'd to 'gumby'. After a while...it was steady on battery. I went over to 'tardis', and watched the UPS run down and cause it to hibernate. Didn't stay to watch 'gumby', headed in to the hallway to visit with evacuees and then go up to watch the storm....and then see about going home.

As I was leaving I saw that my connection to home had gone away. I couldn't remember if I was going into my home network via DSL or Cox. Though based on available data, looks like it was DSL. Will confirm on Monday.

Full story »

Pages: 1· 2· 3

08/08/10

  01:49:12 pm, by The Dreamer   , 519 words  
Categories: Hardware, Computer, Furnishings, Storage

the 'gumby' upgrade, not so good.

actually, pretty bad....

So, while I was looking at the items for the 'lhaven' upgrade...I happened to type other things I might want, and came across a PCI PS/2 adapter.

The new 'gumby' is legacy free...which was causing problems working under my KVM setup. Not quite ready to upgrade the KVM to one that does both PS/2 and USB....so I've been using USB to PS/2 adapters. So far I've tried two. Kingwin and Trendnet. The KVM is a Trendnet, so I kind of hoped the Trendnet one would work.

The Kingwin was first....it works pretty good, except that once in a while the mouse to stops moving. I have to let the mouse sit idle for a moment and then I can move it again. If I don't let go of it, the mouse still being active prevents the 'reset'. Annoying....

So, I got the Trendnet adapter....well, things work...pretty much all the time...except the scrollwheel. And, I've gotten quite fond of using it. Whenever it stops working, I have to unplug the adapter and plug it back in. This is inconvenient and even more annoying....

So, I switched back to the Kingwin, until I decide on what I would use. I wondered if there were a more hardware solution...IE: PCI PS/2.

So, I snapped one up on eBay to try out.

Full story »

08/05/10

  08:55:15 am, by The Dreamer   , 77 words  
Categories: General, Healthcare

Pepsi Refresh Update for Narcolepsy Research

Link: http://www.narcolepsynetwork.org/2010/08/pepsi-refresh-update/

If doing the same thing over and over again doesn't get you a different result, its time to try something different.

Stanford’s Center for Narcolepsy plans to submit a new grant application for narcolepsy research in the $50,000 category. In order to do so, the current proposal must finish in August with a rank of 103 or below so that it does not roll over to September. Therefore, please do not vote for the Narcolepsy ImmunoChip Project during August.

06/26/10

  08:10:52 pm, by The Dreamer   , 1779 words  
Categories: Travel, Home, Appliances

I got a new refrigerator last weekend.

Link: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Samsung+-+19.7+Cu.+Ft.+French+Door+Refrigerator+-+White/9848084.p?id=1218183918073&skuId=9848084

So, I finally gone and done it.

I had been thinking of getting a new refrigerator pretty soon after I became a home owner. Hmmm, strange how that is...because something like that happened when I bought my first home, though the old fridge was much older and was suffering....

Though the fridge here was also old and suffering, it was still capable of being cold....and sometimes too cold. Though it also showed signs that it hadn't been well cared for by previous users....they probably just let it sweat during the hot humid part of the year, and mold was growing out of the insulation.

But, that wasn't why I was looking for a new fridge. Originally, I was dreaming of getting something with a water dispenser. Yes, when I first moved here to Manhattan, I thought the tap water was pretty darn amazing. Though locals complained about it....guess I'm one now. Though water here is still better than some places that I've been.

Now, long before I dreamed of getting a fridge with a water dispenser....I had dr
I had been given the number to the police by the 'landlord' on previous occasions when I had complained about the renters.eamed of getting a bottom freezer fridge. And, while looking at refrigerators....I discovered french door units.

The problem was that most of these units were wider than standard. And, the tiny condo wasn't going to have one. Now, I'm sure I've measured the opening hundreds of times....though I guess I never measured the old fridge or other things like clearance requirements.

But, then newer fridges started coming out that knew people like me might not have the width for wider fridges...but want them. They came out in the magic under 33" width.

Full story »

Pages: 1· 2

06/08/10

  02:33:04 pm, by The Dreamer   , 745 words  
Categories: Travel, Home, Appliances, Healthcare

I bought another air cleaner

This time I got a Winix 9000. This is the air cleaner that I had originally intended to get years ago, but in reading reviews...found a comparable model (for same price) under the Kenmore brand at Sears, and Sears was having a sale at that particular moment....so went with that one. And, later another one.

But, now it was nearly time to get another one. This'll be like the 3rd or 4th one that I'll have had in my living room since I moved here. Don't recall if there was a 1st one....but if I had, it was noisy...so it probably didn't stay long or get much use. But this would be the 3rd new one in the not quite 4 years that I've lived here. The first new one was quite expensive, and didn't seem to do much at all....except constantly tell me that it needed cleaning, but cleaning it showed no signs that it had done anything. The next one seemed to do better, but it was difficult to clean and had to be completely dry before it could be used again. The Kenmore units (and the Winix) are much easier to wash periodically and don't need to be completely dry to be put back into service. So, I kind of decided that when it came time to replace the filter in it...it would probably get replaced completely.

Full story »

05/08/10

  01:30:12 pm, by The Dreamer   , 956 words  
Categories: Stuff, Home Theatre, Computer, Home

Got Another PowerSource 400

The other day, as I was rebuilding my 5 disk RAID array (which I mean to blog about someday)...for the umpteenth time. A storm came in one morning....this made me concerned about losing power and breaking my RAID in some bad state (it had happened once before). Now I did have the computer and its two disk arrays (and as it turned out monitor) on a Geeksquad 1285VA UPS. And, more serious now that I have quite a lot of data backed up onto this array using backuppc. Had gone through some scary periods where I thought I'd have to start over from scratch.

But, decided that may it was time to put it on a PowerSource 400, like my other two Linux servers. So, I went to my usual source....not available from there, but it listed 3 other sellers; two selling for substantially more than it used to sell for and one selling refurbished units. I went looking around online for other sources, including one other that I had considered as an alternative option (because they shipped using FedEx ground). Found that pretty much everybody that had listings for it, showed it as discontinued and not in stock. I check eBay, there were a few listings...but they were mostly of the store demo variety....seemed too risky for me, given past experiences.

So, I put it in my cart for the next time I was going to place a home bound Amazon Prime order (a PowerSource 400 is a heavy item, so even if I don't know when it'll arrive...I wouldn't want to be lugging it back from the UPS Store).

As it happened, the seller shipped it by UPS Basic, and the mail man showed up with it on the day that I stayed home sick....ran the bell twice and then left it on my door step (took me a while to unmask, get out of bed and find some pants). I didn't immediately set it up....but found somewhere to plug it in to at least charge. I was fully discharged, so it would take a while.

Later that evening a big storm came into the area, alert said golf ball sized hail....it sounded pretty intense out there. Just had to happen as I was trying to do the UPS swap. Discovered some oddities about how I have things run for power around my desk that I had forgotten about. But, I think it is all sorted out now. Though I may opt to move the monitor to another UPS at some later point.

Currently, monitor, server (orac) and the two raid boxes (2 drive - RAID1, 5 drive - RAID6) are on this 'new' PowerSource 400 and its reading 250-260W.

Annoyingly the literature doesn't give an estimate for loads >100W on the PowerSource 400....so I'm not really sure how much time I'll get at this...but hope its something. For comparison. 'lhaven' on its PowerSource 400 is reading 100-110W, and 'box' and the network gear (5 port gigabit switch and g access point) on its PowerSource 400 is reading 150-160W. I may pull the access point off the UPS at some later point in the future, since it is deprecated as I mainly use my Airport Extreme now...which is in another location and on a PowerSource 400.

That other PowerSource 400 is reading ~130W...it has 2 TiVo HDs, both with DVR Expanders, router, 16 port 10/100 switch, and the Airport Extreme. I was originally planning to add a RAID USB storage device to the Airport Extreme...though not sure now...that I have my work Mac Book Pro set up as a client to backuppc. (it also rarely comes how now.)

I don't think I have the courage to test how long any of my PowerSource 400s will actually last....but so far I've been happy with the ones that have endured the few extended outages I experienced last year.

I wonder what will be the successor to the PowerSource 400....and whether there'll be more PowerSource 400s, or what, in the future for me.

Pages: 1· 2

04/25/10

  03:57:39 pm, by The Dreamer   , 446 words  
Categories: Home, Safety & Security

The Better Peephole

Link: http://www.hammacher.com/Product/78129

I finally got a peephole, I don't know how or why I put off so long being without one...though it probably won't change my habit of not opening the door in the evening when I'm not expecting anyone, but it is a concern that I'm opening the door with no idea on who is on the other side.

But, being that I bought this home with no existing peephole...and being the gadget freak that I am, I wanted something fancy...

First there was the Door Scope, I had seen it in action at a few friends places...and it seemed to be the kind of thing I'd want. Except it requires a big hole and I'm not equipped to cut such a hole myself, and seemed a big investment to take on for a one time thing (hopefully).

Then I came across the Digital Door Viewer on some gadget blogs, which seemed to be exactly what I wanted to get. Except that nobody seemed to sell it, and I couldn't tell how as a consumer that I could get it from them directly.... It was also kind of pricey for something I wasn't totally sure about...and there were plenty of other gadgets that kept my discretionary funds tied up with.

Then more recently, in a Hammacher Schlemmer catalog...I spotted The Better Peephole....it was a more affordable approach to what I wanted. So, eventually, I pulled the trigger and got it. I picked it up yesterday from the UPS Store.

Wasn't sure when I'd get around to installing it....but the mood struck me this Sunday, since I didn't otherwise feel like doing anything else. So, after putting some juice into a battery pack for my drill (I had purchased a 9/16" bit on a reducing shaft to fit my 3/8" drill, some time ago in anticipation of this project). I tried to drill a hole.

Drilling through the steel of the door turned out harder than I expected...which is probably a good thing about the door. But, then once I got through, little white beads popped out....I guess somehow I thought the fill of the door was going to be something equally solid. Surprise. Guess insulating is more important....

And, finally I got it all installed. And, that's my next disappointment....the image quality is dismal. Though I guess its a standard peephole with a fixed digital camera butted up to it....having some kind of focus control would probably help.

Perhaps the Digital Door Viewer will be a future purchase, since it appears camera element that mounts through the front of the door and has a wire to the viewer on the other side....so it should get better image quality. Hmm...

03/21/10

  01:43:58 pm, by The Dreamer   , 2292 words  
Categories: General, Home, Appliances, Amazon Kindle

I got an Actifry

Link: http://www.t-falusa.com/All+Products/Cooking+Appliances/Deep+Fryers/Products/ActiFry/ActiFry.htm

Supposed to be a deep fryer without all that oil....which is what drew me to it.

Over the years, I have played around with deep frying.

When I first moved out, I lived in this neat apartment with a gas stove. And, I tried the open pan of oil and a basket method. And, I had reasonable success at deep frying stuff like shrimp chips and making fries. But, the fridge in the apartment wasn't so great....and dropping a pile of frosty frozen fries into a pot of hot oil isn't something one should do often....

And, being a gas stove....is made for quite the fireball. Good thing the place had high ceilings....

So, I decided that I might buy a deep fryer appliance at some point in the future, but it wasn't going to be in that apartment...since things were challenging enough running everything on the single 20 amp circuit that powered the entire 1 bedroom apartment. Would be impossible with the number of computers and home theatre components I have now.....not to mention all the appliances. Like no way would I go with turning off the TV, so I can microwave some popcorn...etc., now.

I forget why...but I think there was this craze of home buying around that time....but I eventually bought a home of my own....while the apartment was WWI era, the house I bought was a WWII build. It was better, but not much. Like only one 15amp kitchen counter plug circuit, which included the dishwasher...for some reason the washing machine, bathroom outlet and the side entrance outside light. That was fun when I got the high power motion activated spot light.... But, I got eventually got a deepfryer, I can't remember if it was from Eaton departure from Medicine Hat, or the demise of Woolworths (one of the locations that Walmart didn't convert).

It was nice, not as messy as open pot of oil and safer when using the second half of a bag of fries. But, it was this big awkward appliance that wasn't used often, and it was a pain filtering the oil and changing filters and replacing the oil. Plus it started getting hard to track down filters and stuff for it. This was before the Internet was what it is like today. I was doing online shopping by this point, but it was through Compuserve.

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Now instead of subjecting some poor random forum to a long rambling thought, I will try to consolidate those things into this blog where they can be more easily ignored profess to be collected thoughts from my mind.

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