Self made time capsule, part 2.

In my previous post I described the hardware components of my self made time capsule/home server. It consisted of the Intel NUC micro-PC, Netgear managed 1GBps switch and Edimax 802.1ac access point. Here I'll go over the basic config, necessary to achieve the functionality I've mentioned.


I'm using ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Long Term Support). It is a very decent Debian based distribution and works very well on the Intel NUC. In this post I'll assume that the Linux is already installed and all the hardware components are detected by the kernel (I had no issues whatsoever, it worked out of the box). The only issue that may perhaps be a problem on the NUC is when you have secure boot enabled in the BIOS, which should be disabled before you install Linux. Also make sure the boot sequence in the BIOS makes sense. After you install linux, it's a good idea to update to make sure all the installed packages are the latest.

Before we begin the setup it is good to install a few essentials before we screw up our Internet connection:

apt-get install openssh-server
apt-get install git
apt-get install vim
apt-get install dnsmasq
apt-get install vlan



Self made time capsule, part 1

It will not be about AI this time, neither will it be about Sci-fi. It will actually be exactly about what the title indicates. So let's begin.

Since a certain incident in the late 90's involving a 850MB drive I'm quite paranoid about having backup. For many years this paranoia was satisfied with Apple Time Capsule - a handy device that acts as a wifi/router and a network attached storage, which through afp protocol offers time machine service to Mac computers. I have one back in Poland and I had one here in California, until one day in January 2017 all of a sudden the device died. I had this device since 2010 so it served me well for quite a few years (I upgraded the drive to a 3TB in the meanwhile), but still the death was surprising and disappointing.

But what was even more disappointing, was to see the current Apple's offering in that segment.  As mentioned I bough my (back then 1.5TB) capsule in 2010, now it is 2017 and Apple offers... a 2TB Capsule for $299 and a 3TB Capsule for $399. This is ridiculous!

Ultimately, I decided to build one myself, and I'm very happy … Read more...

Sysadmin hobby

I've recently moved from a managed hosting company to pure, raw Amazon instance and I have to say it's fun. I've set up all the LAMP stack, email server, ssl/certs and a few other services and it feels good. Of course within the first maybe 2 months my machine got attacked by a DDOS targeting WordPress installations and essentially went down.

It took me a while, one evening and one morning of stressful rebooting and fiddling to finally figure out what is going on. In the meanwhile I've mastered every aspect of running an AWS instance like detaching/attaching volumes, changing volume type, changing instance type, reassigning elastic ip's you name it. The thing manifested itself in a substantial (like 99%) IOWAIT time on the machine CPU (top -> wa) and resulting sluggishness of response. So if you are apparently running out of IO on your server, it likely is not without some shady reason - amazon limits for IO are well within what should be enough for a small server with a few websites.

Finally I looked up my apache logs (which I should have done in the first place) to see that I'm being bombarded by large post requests … Read more...