Archive for category: Technology

Home Assistant, the missing piece I needed to get into home automation

For a long time I’ve watched the world of home automation with eager interest in the hope that one day I would be able to apply it in my own home.

Over the years I have read about various systems and protocols used in home automation such as the X10, Z-Wave, ZigBee or Insteon. Some of them use cables or the power line for signaling and control, while others communicate wirelessly via radio waves. Some of them proprietary and others open. But usually incompatible with each other.

Unfortunately, due to their high cost, the difficulty of acquiring the components at that time, their technical limitations, their complex installation or their bad UX from inside and/or outside the home made it impossible for me to implement them in my own home. Until now.
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Start using a VPN right now!

Maybe you’re not using a VPN yet. Perhaps you don’t even know what a VPN is. But it’s more likely you use a connected device such as a smartphone, a tablet or a PC everyday. If that is the case, I strongly suggest that you continue reading. It’ll be worth it.
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How to upgrade DD-WRT

Sooner or later after installing DD-WRT on your router you will need to upgrade it. Fortunately this task is easier than the initial installation.

First, you will need to download the appropriate file for your router. To do this, you can go to any of the following addresses and look for the model of your router:

ftp://ftp.dd-wrt.com/betas/

https://download1.dd-wrt.com/dd-wrtv2/downloads/betas/

https://dd-wrt.com/support/other-downloads/?path=betas

In my case, as I have a Linksys WRT1900ACS, I browsed up to this folder:

ftp://ftp.dd-wrt.com/betas/2018/07-28-2018-r36410/linksys-wrt1900acs/

In the corresponding folder you will find two files. The factory-to-ddwrt file is to flash the router from OEM to DD-WRT, which is the one we used in the first installation. The webflash file is to upgrade when already running DD-WRT and is the one we need now. In my case I downloaded:

https://download1.dd-wrt.com/dd-wrtv2/downloads/betas/2018/07-28-2018-r36410/linksys-wrt1900acs/ddwrt-linksys-wrt1900acs-webflash.bin

Next, access the router’s GUI (by default is at 192.168.1.1), go to the Administration tab and click the Firmware Upgrade tab.

Click the Browse… button and select the file you have previously downloaded.

Finally, click the Upgrade button and wait until the router restarts.

 


Some handy links

Wiki dd-wrt: Upgrading to a Newer Version of DD-WRT
How to install DD-WRT on the Linksys WRT1900ACS Wireless Router
Linksys WRT1900ACS product page [Amazon UK]

 

How to install DD-WRT on the Linksys WRT1900ACS Wireless Router

The Linksys WRT1900ACS is a good wireless router, but one of its best features is that it is supported by different open source firmwares including dd-wrt. So, if you’re like me and want to use this router with the OpenSource router firmware to unlock all of its power instead of the limited factory firmware, read this guide to learn how to install it. It’s not a hard process but I had several issues when I installed the firmware on my router so I’ve written in this guide all the solutions I had to apply. I hope they will help you too.

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Block Coinhive from mining coins for others

Some days ago I noticed while I was browsing the web with Firefox Quantum 57.0.4 (64-bit) how the fans of my Macbook Air started running at full speed. Immediately I opened the Activity Monitor and I saw that the process responsible of this anormal CPU use was “Firefox Web Content”.

Afterwards I used Little Snitch to investigate who was responsible for it and I found out that a website was connecting to the domain coinhive.com to do JavaScript crypto coin mining.

The solution was simple, I added a new rule in Little Snitch to deny any outgoing connection to the domain coinhive.com

Now my Mac will not work mining to others via coinhive ?