Posts tagged linux

A Transparent Ad-Blocking VPN via SoftEther + Privoxy

:: trickery, linux

I recently1, finally, got a smart phone—an iPhone. One of the first things that annoyed me were the ads. I use Ad-Block Plus on all my computers and I have not been bothered by ads in quite some time.

One approach to removing ads is rooting my phone and installing a customized hosts file. This approach has several flaws. I once tried this approach on my android tablet. While better than nothing, it misses many ads and tends to interrupt normal internet use.

Another approach, as of iOS 9, is to use Safari content filters. However, this requires me to use Safari, and I prefer Firefox.

After lots of tinkering and reading and thinking, the best approach seems to be a VPN with proxy that seamlessly block ads (and potentially provide additional security, privacy, caching, and etc). There are apps that provide a VPN with ad blocking proxy, but reading their privacy policies caused me great concern. So I decided to setup my own.

Setting up WebDAV, CalDAV, and CardDAV servers

:: linux, tricks

A while back I wrote a post about paranoia in which I was considering allowing Google or Apple to manage things like my calendar and contacts. Since then, I have reequipped my paranoia hat. This week I setup my own WebDAV, CalDAV, and CardDAV servers and secured them behind an nginx proxy which provides SSL encryption and HTTP authentication.

An on demand Minecraft Server

:: games, tricks, linux

Sometimes I play minecraft. Sometimes I play a lot of minecraft and sometimes I just stop playing for months. Lately when I do play, I’ve bene playing with a slightly modified version of Tekkit and running my own server. I have a VPS that I probably under use, so I decided to run the server there for when I do play with my friends.

My VPS is not very powerful, and running a Minecraft server when I stop playing for months is a huge waste of resources. I sought a way to automatically bring the server up when I wanted to play and shut it down when I wasn’t playing for a while.

Using Evil for Good

:: linux, tricks

So I use Vim as my primary editor. Unfortunately, some applications I require (e.g. Proof General) run only on the Emacs operation system, which comes with a terrible editor. Thankfully, I’ve found a pretty decent port of Vim to Emacs, called (appropriately) Evil.

Command line trash/recycle script

:: linux, tricks

A while back, I got really sick of sometimes accidentally rm-ing a file. I thought “Woe is me, if only I had a command that, instead, hid the file away from me, in a place I knew of but didn’t really thing about, so I could recover it if I wanted it.”.

Version controlled configs

:: linux, tricks

Disclaimer: I typed this is a hurry and haven’t proof-read it, or tried running any of the code (except the script at the end).

So a while ago I decided to use git to track all my dot-files and other assorted configuration stuff that each of my linux systems need. I’m going to try to outline how I did this: