Sunday, September 17, 2017

AT&T Messages

I didn't know you could do this!


Just go to https://messages.att.net.

It's a little bit clunky and AT&T seems to be deprecating some of it.

For example, you can click on the phone number in a message and a dialog box pops up offering to "Create New Contact" but that doesn't work.


And messages sent from this application don't get pushed back to the phone.

Still, pretty nice.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

LAN Diagram

I thought that I had posted about my LAN configuration before but I can't find it.

I'd been following Steve Gibson's Three Dumb Router solution to IOT insecurity. But I've also come across several discussions of using Ubiquiti's EdgeRouter X.

My equipment closet had become a rat's nest with long Ethernet cables wadded up behind all the equipment. Of course they were either not labeled or had the wrong labels on them.

So I redesigned my LAN segmenting it into a home (safe) network and Internet of Things (IoT) (unsafe) devices.

I bought color coded patch cables from Monoprice - red for Internet, green for home and blue for IoT.

To manage the connections to each segment I added a 8-port Gigabit switch to each segment.

I haven't implemented the EdgeRouter X yet so I'm actually not yet isolating the 2 segments. The dashed lines represent the current configuration.

Update: Did you find the problem in this configuration? Look again. Look closer. Then scroll down.















The NETGEAR ProSafe FS108NA is 10/100 mbps, not gigabit. I discovered this when I copied a large amount of data to the Drobo 5N. It was SLOW.

I have since replaced the NETGEAR with a D-Link GO-SW-8GE.















Sunday, September 03, 2017

AT&T Microcell

I upgraded my wife from an iPhone 5s to an iPhone SE over Christmas. Ever since she's been complaining about signal strength.

I called AT&T and they admitted that one of the towers near my house was down and had been down for a couple of weeks.

I whined at them for a while and finally convinced them to give me a free microcell.
The AT&T MicroCell acts like a mini cell tower in your home and connects to your existing broadband Internet service. You receive improved cell signal performance for voice calls, texts, and cellular data applications like picture messaging and Web surfing.
After a couple of odd interactions with AT&T a Cisco DPH154 arrived.
Activation was easy.

And it worked. Really well.

Before

After
An improvement of 45dB! Also, notice the difference of the indicator in the status bar, i.e. "Wi-Fi" vs. "M-Cell".