[root@rhce-ryanrudolf]# rm -rf / 2> /dev/null

things I break/fix for fun and learning

Nov 17, 2018 - 1 minute read - Comments

Rebuilding My Homelab Environment

With the recent release of RHEL 8.0 Beta, I decided to break and rebuild my homelab environment. RHEL 8.0 will be a new beast to tackle and be familiar with, and since my RHCSA certficate is valid until Mar 2021, it will be a good way to practice and prepare when it comes to recertification. I also need to do this to refresh my knowledge and not be stagnant.

Oct 16, 2018 - 6 minute read - Comments

Using a 35 Dollar Laptop in 2018

I was able to snag a laptop for 35cad dollars (60cad including taxes and shipping) – a legendary Thinkpad X220. This laptop is from year 2011 and being a Thinkpad it is built like a tank and still functions OK up to this day. It is also legendary and well-known for it’s great 7-row layout keyboard. This is the last Thinkpad generation to use the 7-row keyboard layout, although they recently released a Thinkpad 25 Anniversary Edition with modern components and a 7-row keyboard. Most recent laptops are using chiclet keyboards, which for me is a downgrade as opposed to an upgrade. I’ve been wanting to get an X220 as my old one broke down due to water damage. Finally after months of waiting, something showed up for a good price and it’s too good to be true. Usually Thinkpad X220s are in the price of 200cad, there must be a catch somewhere!

Sep 3, 2018 - 2 minute read - Comments

Building Android from Source

I’ve always wanted to build Android from source, and yesterday I was able to do so! It’s a complicated process, requires a lot of reading, patience, fast internet connection, a decent computer and lots of hours.

But why do all of this? I use my smartphone much like a portable computer nowadays. Connect to my voip server, make online purchases, do online banking, buy stocks, check emails, access social media, watch videos, listen to music, take photos, store lots of information, and send / receive calls and SMS.

Aug 29, 2018 - 5 minute read - Comments

Messing Around with a PlayStation2 (PS2) in 2018

About a month ago, we found a nice little PlayStation2 (PS2) in the curb in our neighborhood. Looks like nobody wanted it as it’s already afternoon and no one picked it up yet. I am hesitant to pick it up, as it contains no cables, no connectors, no gamepads. Just the PS2 itself.

So I decided to pick it up and planned my way on how to make it work without spending too much on accessories.

Jul 9, 2018 - 2 minute read - Comments

Using Logitech MK530 in Fedora Linux

My wired DELL Multimedia keyboard started acting up and several keys just stopped working. Rebooting my computer did not help. I thought it is just my Linux install but even if I boot to Windows 7, the keyboard is still misbehaving. Based on that troubleshooting, I have decided to get a new keyboard. After reading and comparing several reviews, I have decided for a Logitech MK530 combo – it is a wireless Logitech K520 keyboard and wireless Logitech M510 mouse. It also uses a unifying USB receiver – only 1 receiver and it controls both the wireless mouse and keyboard, and you can use upto 6 devices with just 1 receiver. Installing it in Fedora Linux is also a snap!

Jul 7, 2018 - 3 minute read - Comments

OpenWRT 18.06 for WDR3500

I have been testing the upcoming OpenWRT 18.06 RC-1 firmware on my backup WDR3600 router and so far so good. For my weekend project, I have decided to upgrade my main router WDR3500 to use the latest OpenWRT release 18.06. Instead of RC-1, I will use the latest snapshot build. I will also flash it to use a modified bootloader just like my WDR3600, so that I can easily recover from bricks without the need for JTAGs, making this router unbrickable!

Jun 23, 2018 - 2 minute read - Comments

Testing Upcoming Firmware OpenWRT 18.06

I am browsing the OpenWRT forums and the upcoming firmware will be 18.06. Notable improvements are kernel 4.9.x as opposed to kernel 4.4x which the current firmware 17.01.04 is running on. I am sure there are more improvements under the hood, as this is the first release after OpenWRT and LEDE merger! Just gotta wait for the official changelog / README, but being thirsty for bleeding edge stuff, I decided to flash the snapshot version. I also feel confident that nothing will go wrong or it won’t brick my device. Snapshot builds means it is almost ready for production, just ironing out some bugs but non-show stoppers. If in case it does brick, I am still safe as my router is unbrickable. I have flashed a modified uboot that will easily recover it from bad flash / bricks! This is what I like about the open source community, the products keep getting better due to the contribution of the community. The official vendor TPLINK though, does not provide this things in their official firmware. And TPLINK also stopped making firmware updates for this particular model years ago.

Jun 6, 2018 - 2 minute read - Comments

Gigabit Upgrade for my Homelab

My current homelab consists of dual gigabit NICs for my Dell PowerEdge servers and a single gigabit NIC for my laptop Lenovo ThinkPad T420s. I also have several USB gigabit ethernet NICs in case the built-in NIC dies or if I need to expand the connectivity of my laptop. The only thing slowing things down is my D-Link DIR-615 router / switch combo - it only runs at 10/100MB speeds. Eventhough I have gigabit NICs on my equipment, file transfers are slow because of the bottleneck in my router / switch.