Skip to main content


Showing posts from June, 2014

Kudos to Google and Blogger!

I just spent the past hour or so copy/pasting my GoDaddy Blog that is going away into Blogger.   I have to say, I LIKE Blogger, having only really used it one day.   Pictures, URLs, and everything that I copy/pasted into Blogger worked like a CHAMP!  I can't imagine how it would have been easier, considering that GoDaddy canceled my QuickView Blogcast account, so I couldn't back it up.  But copy/pasting worked great, which shows that Google knows what they are doing!  I used to have a lot of problems with GoDaddy and blogging... So in the end, I guess I'm glad I moved to Blogger!

Moving /opt to new disk

Recently I was playing with a Kali VM and I installed so much stuff to it that I used up the disk!  Literally, I was at 100% used!  Yikes!  

I started to try to delete unnecessary files, trash, cached apt packages, etc, but quickly came to the conclusion that I wanted everything that I had on the Kali VM, and my disk was still 96% full.  So I needed a way to offload files that I still wanted.  
I looked through my VM, which had a single 20GB hard drive, and saw that /usr had 10GB by itself, and /opt had 4GB.  So I decided to create a new virtual hard drive, move over my /opt files, and change /opt's location in /etc/fstab to point to the new directory.   This solved my problem, as my drive that USED to say 96% full, now says 73% full, just by moving /opt.   
Here's how I moved it:
I added a new virtual hard drive in VirtualBox that was 12GB.   I booted up the VM, went into fdisk, and noted (by doing 'ls /dev/sd*') that my new drive was called sdb.  I used fdisk to crea…

Beaglebone Black as a Wireless Intrusion Detection System (WIDS)

Recently I have been wanting a wireless IDS (WIDS) to detect nefarious wifi activity.  I also had a Beaglebone Black hanging around that I wanted to put to good use.   This seemed like a perfect match, and indeed it seems to be so!

I did some research on WIDSs, and although there is SUPPOSED to be several out there, nearly all that I seemed to find was commercial and Windows-based products, not something I could use myself.   
About the only exception to that rule was Kismet, so I decided to give that a try.  Kismet is supposed to work as a WIDS, and per its documentation should catch the following attacks:
Kismet supports the following alerts, where applicable the WVE (Wireless Vulnerability and Exploits, ID is included: AIRJACKSSID Fingerprint Deprecated The original 802.11 hacking tools, Airjack, set the initial SSID to 'airjack' when starting up. This alert is no longer relevant as the Airjac…

XenServer xsconsole failure

Recently I had my XenServer die on me, which I'm assuming was the result of starting too many VMs simultaneously.  The symptoms were that it was unreachable from the XenServer Client application, however I could ssh into it, and some of the VMs were running.

This appeared to be a problem with xsconsole.  I tried to restart it with "service xapi stop" however this never returned from the prompt (it hung).
To fix this problem I found this post
which was basically: killall -9 xapi
This worked in stopping the service, and I was able to start it with "service xapi start."
I did notice some glitches still, like when I attempt to start one of my VMs I got an error about some bubbles not being available.  
Thus, since I now had access to the XenServer via the Client application, I cleanly shut down all my VMs and entered/exited maintenance mode, and rebooted the ser…

Windows 8 and Windows 8.1

Recently I got an All-in-One Windows 8 Touchscreen.  Since it was a new environment for me, I thought I'd post a couple of things about its functionality over Windows 7, which is the market leader currently.

First, Windows 8 did away with the traditional desktop, which I dislike tremendously.  There are several post out there and several third-party vendors who sell products to make the Windows 8 look more like Windows 7, which should tell Microsoft something, which they are ignoring---people LIKE the desktop and Start Menu!
Still, since my PC is a touchscreen, I thought I'd try to live with the Windows 8 Tiles environment.  Microsoft is trying to make their desktop like Apple, where you have applications that you buy from them sitting on your desktop.  For instance, the PC came with a Skype App pre-installed on their tile screen.  When I tried to sign in with my Skype account, it tried to force me to sign in with my Microsoft Live account instead, and it actually succeeded in…

ADS-B plotting with Kali (and other SDR goodies)

Recently I wanted to try some Software Defined Radio stuff.   
I had a RTL-SDR, FM+DAB, DVB-T USB Stick Set with RTL2832U & R820T. that I got from:
But, even though this dongle would break out FM radio stations, and ATC frequencies (like the local Ground Control, tower, and even ATIS), which was cool, it wouldn't break out ADS-B.   
Thus, I bought a Vantech Green Mini RTL2832U R820T DVB-T SDR DAB FM USB DIGITAL TV Tuner Receiver RTL-SDR Project + DAB dongle Tuner MCX Input from Amazon, and tried this.  
This dongle was able to listen to the 1090MHz frequency required for ADS-B (as it goes from 25MHz to 1700MHz).  There were tons of Windows programs out there for breaking out and plotting ADS-B Mode S broadcasts, but not many for Linux.  
For Kali Linux, here's how I got it running and plotting planes around my home:
0) before you start, you should do an apt-get update to ensure you hav…

Kudos to DollarShaveClub

For about a year now I've been a member of Dollar Shave Club.   If you haven't seen the video, watch it... it's funny enough that it's worth the time:
Anyway, I've loved their blades, but when I signed up I somehow got 2 subscriptions (I suspect from my browser page not returning after sign up, so I signed up again).  
So, I've been getting double the blades, and since I had enough on hand for 3/4 of a year, I wrote them an email asking to suspend or canx my membership.  
They were SUPER responsive and cordial, and they even had the foresight to send me another razor, as the one I had was getting kind of beat up after a year (and TONS of traveling).   
So.... I just wanted to post a message of support... If you haven't tried them, please consider it.  I LOVE them.   I think their prices, blades, and customer service have been outstanding.

Remove Windows Genuine Advantage Notifications

Recently I was going on a trip and wanted to pack up my iPhone.  iTunes, the bane of my existence, wouldn't back up my phone unless I updated it to the newest version.  Fine.... I upgraded iTunes (because I had no choice).   When I rebooted, my PC was dead... apparently the power supply decided it was a good time to die.

I ordered a new power supply, and after I installed it, I was getting this "You might be a victim of software counterfeiting" error, with an annoying error displayed in the lower right about Windows Genuine Advantage, saying my "Volume License was blocked."
I called Microsoft, as I have a purchased (with the new PC) license, and started my 2-hour long run around.   First they said it wasn't Windows, but some other software, and directed me to a number (that was conveniently closed).  I called back.  I told them it was Windows, no other software, and gave them the product key.  They had me check (Start->Run->type "oobe/mssoobe a&q…

Raspberry Pi OpenVPN Client

Some places, if you read my blog at: are Nazis on blocking traffic.  Even traffic that nobody should block (like secure VPNs).  

So if you want to get around a crazy fireawall, or get around interception of your traffic, you could use an SSH tunnel, like I gave instructions for in that post. 
But, some devices (like iPads, iPhones, etc) won't let you connect to your own VPN,  (iPads and iPhones can't have a tap device), so there is no solid way to secure their traffic through a hostile network.

Raspberry Pi to the rescue!  
Here's how to set up a Raspberry Pi to be an OpenVPN Client to an OpenVPN server (your own, or a service like HideMyAss, etc), and have the Raspberry Pi serve up it's own wireless Access Point and pump all its packets out through the OpenVPN tunnel, so that all your devices (computer, phone, tablet, etc) can connect through the tunnel securely!  Here's how I did it:
I had alr…

HP c6180 "Ink System has Failed" error 0x18a0106

About a year ago our pretty expensive HP All-In-One c6180 Printer, Copier, Fax, Scanner quit working, giving the error "Ink System Has Failed.  Unable to copy, receive faxes, or print.  Refer to printer documentation.  Error 0x18a01016"

My wife was fed up with this P.O.S printer, as it kept deleting its drivers from her laptop, and we have continually had problems re-installing the drivers.   HP loves to make money off of their consumers, and they can't just give you a printer driver.  They have to give you a 1GB printer, photo-editor, Adobe Acrobat crapware, Facebook auto-poster, desktop manager, their own search engine, and such worthless stuff, so I was continually downloading their 800MB file and re-installing...  See this post for more details:
Anyway, I had some time today, and although we've already bought a replacement because my wife was so fed up with that P.O.S, I still thought I'd…