Linux server update

You might have noticed already, the Linux homeserver project is not updated for a very long time. The original setup was based on Slackware 14.0 and some parts were updated to version 14.1. Version 14.2 is already released a long time ago, and a next version will be announced anytime now. Well, within a year “when it’s ready” of course.

I will leave that project as it is now, it doesn’t look like my own setup anymore, I just keep it as a reference so you can borrow some ideas from it.


VirtualBox to LXC migration.

It has been quiet the last months here, but there were reasons for that. The most time consuming reason was that I started to brew beer, but there were some other projects too.

The home server project got some big changes. The virtual machines were migrated from VirtualBox¬† to LinuX Containters. This makes the system a whole lot faster, and makes that you can use lighter machines to run this project. The new Raspberry should do fine. Anyway, it took some time before I could document it all, but now it’s ready (I hope).

The firewall configuration is replaced. I used to use firewallbuilder, but that project was abandoned. So I decided to write some scripts that generates the firewall rules using some configuration files. These are available as Slackware package too.

Protection against spying TV’s with the homeserver project.

An interesting thread can be read at DoctorBeet’s Blog about LG smart TV’s sending private information to several Internet sites. In the article about the basic network setup I did create a hook in the setup of dnsmasq, the name server for your internal network. The setup has the following line:



This means that any file dropped in that directory is read when dnsmasq starts. To block the sites mentioned at DoctorBeet’s Blog, create the file /etc/dnsmasq.d/80-lg-block with the following contents:

# LG smart TV spy networks


The restart dnsmasq using /etc/rc.d/rc.dnsmasq restart. If you use the IP address of your home server instead of you can see all these requests in the log of your own internal web server. But if you use you won’t see a thing, the TV will be talking to itself.

This option is also useful to block sites you don’t want to contact such as these irritating popup (poker/sex) sites.

Site speed and updates

The site became slow again, nothing new. This time it was caused by the nextgen gallery plugin. The 2.xx series had new features that causes the slowdown. In the meantime, there is a fork made from the latest pre 2.xx code called nextcellent gallery. This is almost a drop in replacement, so it is easy to “downgrade” the gallery.

In another post I wrote about a new download plugin, today I removed it. I am using an external site again. One of the missing things with an external site (nginx with autoindex) was that it didn’t produce data for piwik. Today I found out that there is a new experimental feature that can do logfile analyses. This works and now every hour a cron job runs that tool.

Updated the menus

It is a long time ago when I last updated this site, but here are some new updates. One of the projects hosted on this site is the MBSE BBS package. I was still running a Fidonet connected BBS but I finally decided to shut it down because I almost never used it and the MBSE BBS package is 99% finished. I have been a member in Fidonet for about 20 years, but today other media are more used by me. All pages for the MBSE BBS software and related pages will stay on this site.

Something different, we now have a tablet in the house. So when I used it to navigate on this site I found that it was very difficult to use the pull down menus when they were more than one level deep. I already had the extra links in the top articles for those who had a broken javascript, so this site was still usable on a tablet. I decided to make that more permanent by restricting the pull down menus to only one level deep (pull down, no extra levels) and to move the extra levels to the right sidebar. Here they are dynamic loaded when appropriate.

New WordPress plugin

About a year ago I had written a WordPress plugin that displays a widget and can retrieve amateur radio call sign information from several sources. I decided that it was time to make this plugin available for everyone. This ‘callsignquery’ plugin is now in the official WordPress repository so that everyone that wants to use it can install it using plugins -> new plugins settings in WP. You can see this plugin in action on this Dutch dstar site.