I wrote earlier about how I had to do some configuration of my DNS to get dnsmasq and resolved to work well together. With it working well I’m able to use dnsmasq, resolved, and network manager together to do local development while also detecting network changes nicely.

Recently I noticed I would occasionally get the dreaded question-mark network icon: “?” I did some digging around and it was related to Ubuntu’s Network Connectivity check. Several posts out there simply say to disable the check by going to Settings -> Privacy and turning Connectivity Checking to “Off.”

But by disabling connectivity checking, I don’t get the automatic prompt to connect through a captive portal (like at my local library). I wanted to actually fix the problem, so I needed to understand what the problem was.

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After setting up my new OpenWrt router, it is time to get my local phone number that I ported from Google Voice to Skyetel working.

Most of the configuration follows this Nerdvittles Skyetel post, but I include some specifics and screenshots for my configuration using OpenWrt, IncrediblePBX on Raspberry Pi, and a Linksys RTP-300 analog telephone adapter.

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I went to resurrect my dynamic DNS configuration on my OpenWrt router. The idea was sparked from a reader comment, so I wanted to follow-up on using nsupdate.info with OpenWrt for a DIY Dynamic DNS setup.

Before I began, I thought I should see if there’s a newer OpenWrt version my router can run. I always start on the Supported Devices page of the wiki, but on this visit I was treated to a warning:

If you read the 4/32 warning, the crux of the matter is that there may not be enough RAM to run OpenWrt without crashing. And the small flash area means possibly not having enough room to install LuCI, the web interface, and the packages to access LuCI via HTTPS. Also, there’s this:

Previous versions of OpenWrt (such as earlier versions of 17.01.x, 15.05.x β€œChaos Calmer” and prior) contain now-known security vulnerabilities in the kernel, wireless implementation, and/or application code. […] In many cases, these known vulnerabilities are being actively targeted, potentially including by advanced, likely state-sponsored or state-affiliated actor or actors.

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Once upon a time you could hook your Asterisk-based PBX to your Google Voice account to make and receive calls. How you hooked it up over the years changed (annoyingly). And at the end of 2018, support for accessing Google Voice via XMPP was dropped. Remember when we trusted Google to be the “for the better good” company? Oh, how times have changed.

With the tech giant under increased scrutiny for it’s advertising practices, I’m not at all sad about leaving one of their products behind. The only thing I wanted to keep was my cool Google Voice phone number: 29-FOELL.

I did it with the help of Nerdvittles and included several screenshots here for easy reference. I also used his advice when it came to picking a new VOIP provider. After looking at a few options, I’m going with Skyetel. Not because it’s the cheapest (it’s not), but because it has an important feature for our home phone: E911.

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At home, we’ve created a parody on the Tim & Eric song/skit “All The Food is Poison”

Our version is called “All The Things Are Cancelled” and it goes like this:

All the things are cancelled, all the things are cancelled!

  • WGI – Cancelled!
  • Drum Corps – Cancelled!
  • Sportsball – Cancelled!
  • State Fair – Cancelled!
  • WordCamp – Cancelled?

WordCamp US 2020 was canceled, citing online event fatigue. But the organizers of WordCamp Minneapolis / St. Paul did not. Would we just be another notch in the bedpost of 2020 online event fatigue?

To be honest, the organizing team did contemplate canceling WordCamp Minneapolis / St. Paul as the Coronavirus pandemic continued to linger. But everyone agreed that pivoting to a single-day virtual event was a better idea – and we stayed the course.

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