In late 2005, my wife and I were living in Sulimaniya, Iraq. As I was preparing for bed one night, I decided to play a prank on her. Shaving the beard from my goatee to leave only a filthy little mustache, I slid next to her in bed.

molestache1

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I use an advanced ping template with Cacti to monitor ICMP latency. Advanced Ping is based on a template originally found on the Cacti forums, but modified to look more like Smoke Ping. My thanks go to my colleague at Talia, Enno, for making it look beautiful as well as functional.

Advanced_Ping

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Merry Christmas!

It’s that time again! Merry Christmas, everyone! We have a special card just for you:

http://www.tolaris.com/xmas/xmas2014.php

(In case you miss it the first time, try reloading or clicking the button.)

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One limitation of Mikrotik‘s DNS and DHCP implementations is that you cannot easily sync hostnames from DHCP requests into DNS. This is a standard feature of many routers. On OpenWRT routers (which use dnsmasq), if a PC called “pc1” requests an IP address, any other PC can then “ping pc1”. Fortunately, we can script this behaviour on Mikrotik.

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APT, the package manager for Debian/Ubuntu has had the ability to use a proxy for many years. However, proxy support is tricky. Suppose you have a proxy at your work, but not at your home? When you take your laptop home, APT won’t be able to update.

Enter apt-find-proxy, my tool to do just that.

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I have removed support from Ubuntu 13.10 “Saucy Salamander” / Linux Mint 16 “Petra” from my repository. As these releases are no longer supported, you should upgrade immediately.

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I’m joining Google!

I am very excited to announce that I’m joining Google as a Site Reliability Manager at the London (Victoria) office. I start in late November 2014. I don’t yet know what projects I’ll be working on, but I can’t wait to find out.

I’ve been at Talia a long time. I’ve done some cool stuff, worked with great people, and been to very unusual places. But all things must end, and it is time for a change. Thank you to all my friends and colleagues at Talia, and I wish you all the best.

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My company, Talia, provides hosted Voice-over-IP (VoIP) services to our customers. A typical use is a software-based PBX such as Asterisk on our virtual machine hosting cluster (or as the kids say, our “cloud”). We use the same for our own corporate PBX.

In the past month, we’ve experienced two fraudulent attacks costing a few hundred USD each. We have measures to detect and prevent such things, but that’s not what I want to talk about. I want to talk about how these attacks occurred.

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I still use a Buffalo WZR-HP-G300NH as my home router, although I no longer use it as a wireless AP*. Tonight I upgraded it to OpenWRT 12.09 “Attitude Adjustment”. These are my notes on the upgrade.

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Some time ago, I wrote a guide on how to create an online eBook library, accessible from a browser or Android/iPhone device. The benefits are many. You always have access to all your books, anywhere. You can directly share them with your friends. You don’t have to manage local libraries on your devices.

Since I wrote my first post, a number of better tools have come along which make this easier. Here is the new way to do it.

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