Oneplus 3 Nougat with R/W System

By davidgo | April 5, 2017 |

I recently upgraded my Oneplus 3 to OxygenOS 4.0.3 – which runs Android 7.0. I discovered that I could no longer write to the hosts file to do ad blocking and this was driving me crazy, so I set about changing the OS to allow me to do this – it required a single letter tweak to a file – but, unfortunately this file is embedded in the heart of the ROM.   Other then tweeking the fstab file in the initial ramdisk image to mount /system rw I have made no changes to the source code.  (Of-course, it is possible that when I repackaged this I did something slightly wrong, being that I’ve never done this before)…

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Resolving shared WordPress Email issue

By davidgo | October 11, 2016 |

I like using a database to directly drive my virtual webhosting – this means that each account on the system has a UID and GID, but no username associated with it (ie in /etc/passwd or getent passwd) Because of this, when users try and send an email in WordPress (eg to reset their password), WordPress does not send the message, complaining “Possible reason: your host may have disabled the mail() function.” The underlying cause of the problem can be found by looking at the Postfix mail Logs – where you get errors like “fatal: no login name found for user ID XXXX” Fixing this problem – without relying on WordPress plugins or tweeks is simple – modify…

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Secret of Oneplus 3

By davidgo | October 10, 2016 |

The OnePlus 3 has had some interesting reviews and press coverage, and its very much a mixed bag, but, nowhere online have I read about its killer feature – FANTASTIC (Almost unbelievable) RECEPTION. I am blessed to live on a lifestyle block (ie semi rural), which gets marginal coverage from 2 Degrees Mobile – my preferred provider.  So marginal, in fact, that the deciding factor in purchasing my cellphones is the ability to handle 2 SIM cards, so I can fall over onto Vodafone so I can reliably receive calls at home. With this, my desire for a technically advanced phone and particularly my spendthrift nature, the OnePlus 3 was the obvious choice. I’ve been disappointed in…

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Hangsun S80 Lamp

By davidgo | June 22, 2016 |

I purchased one of these lamps in 2016.  Below details my findings and some help to others (maybe). The product is not good at all – indeed if returning it were a practical option I would – but because I live down-under, shipping costs make this prohibitive – so I’ve tried to make the best I can. Problems I encountered – I could not download the Android App, no matter how hard I tried – I assume this is because of country restrictions set by the developer.   Luckily, I reached out to them, and they responded, and they responded with a QR code to download the app (not sure if this is a different one to the…

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Samsung 840 EVO Geometry

By davidgo | September 10, 2014 |

I recently had a need to upgrade a 500 gig (raided) hard drive to an SSD.   I noted that the standard geometry for a 500 gig hard drive presents as 500.1 gigs, while the data sheet for the Samsung 840 EVO MZ-7TE500BW SSD claims to be fractionally smaller on the detailed spec sheets I found. Happily this is not the case, and it shares the same size as most 500 gig hard drives, ie RawCHS=16383/16/63

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Swap and Encfs mounting on Startup in Ubuntu

By davidgo | August 24, 2014 |

I use Ubuntu 14.04 on my laptop and I have a somewhat unique setup, whereby I use DRBD and encfs to mirror and secure my data as I understand that when SSD drives fail they tend to do so catastrophically and without warning.   I thus have a rather complex boot process. I spent the morning tidying up the boot process so it looks professional (* which is not to say that this is the professional or best way to do it – but it works) I discovered there is a dearth of information on the kinds of things I want to do, but needed to become familiar with the following – Plymouth – The fancy boot screen…

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BD-F6500 region free upgrade – Firmware 1010 / 1017 note

By davidgo | July 1, 2014 |

In case anyone has the same issue – A few months ago I purchased a SamsungBD-F6500 from Noel Leemings (A whiteware retailer in New Zealand).   A few days ago, we purchased some DVDs which were “region 2” and would not play on our NZ/AU – region 4 player(s). I attempted to region unlock the DVD using the method on the Internet, ie Start the DVD player, open and close [empty] dvd drive, press repeat, enter in “7 6 8 8 4“, then “9” for region free.   This failed to work a number of times. With nothing to loose I upgraded the firmware to 1017, and was able to unlock the drive using the above process without issue…

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Adding Perfect Forward Secrecy to OpenVPN

By davidgo | April 12, 2014 |

Perfect Forward Secrecy is a methodology applied to encryption to frustrate the decoding of traffic captured and stored prior to the discovery of the secret key by an adverse party.  This is done by generating a new random key every time data is transmitted. Enabling this in OpenVPN is quite easy, but does not appear to be well documented.  The steps to do this are: Create a common private key, eg openvpn –genkey –secret /path/to/store/pfs.key Securely distribute this key to each OpenVPN client, then add the following to the server tls-server tls-auth /path/to/store/pfs.key 0 and this to each client tls-client tls-auth /path/to/store/pfs.key 1   It is also possible to embed the tls-auth certificate in the configuration file…

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Fail2Ban and Brute-Force Password attacks on WordPress

By davidgo | October 24, 2013 |

I maintain a server hosting a fair number of WordPress blogs and I get inundated with brute-force password attempts.    In order to minimize the likelyhood of success of an attack, I have taken to limiting the number of login attempts I’ve customised some Fail2Ban rules to provide “overriding” lockout of accounts. The code certainly has its limitations – for example it will – without warning –  temporarily lock out people who have forgotten their passwords, however for the most part it works pretty well. One of the things I’ve noticed recently is that some attempts are persistent – they will continue to try log in even when null-routed, and for long periods of time.  I’ve thus written…

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Review of the Domain DM-DV703USB 2 DIN video/mp3/cd car stereo

By davidgo | August 11, 2013 |

My Toyota VITZ 2004 came with a “Japanese Only” Stereo, which included a reverse camera. To get the reverse camera working, in addition to some wiring tweaks (See my post on “Original Toyota Reverse Light Camera on 2004 Vitz/Echo with an aftermarket stereo“). As I can’t call myself an audiophile, and I can be tight-fisted (who wants to spend 1/10th of a run-around vehicles value on expensive stereo equipment – especially when it spends time in a “not-that-good” neighbourhood), I decided to purchase a budget stereo off Trademe. I picked up a Domain 7″ DVD/CD/USB/SD receiver, model DM-DV703USB from Sound Tech for arround $200 (you can get a similar one from Jonvy), and tried to install it.…

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