In a previous post I wrote about installing a Wi-Fi repeater in my home and how I could then reach a sustainable data rate of over 800 Mbit/s. Very close to Gbit Ethernet! Unfortunately the connection was not stable. After a few days the repeater just stops working until rebooted. After experiencing this a couple of times I had a closer look to find out if this was a software instability or something else.
It is interesting to see how the users of my Nextcloud keep pushing previously existing limits, real or perceived. Back in 2018 I had a post of how to increase the maximum file size Nextcloud could handle and I was happy to see that I could easily go up to 5 GB files. I didn’t push it beyond that as I couldn’t imagine anyone would want to send bigger files. But recently, I was asked if a 20 GB file could be stored on my Nextcloud for sharing and I have a to admit I was skeptical. So I set out to try if and how this would work in practice.
After writing about all the good things I noticed after upgrading from Ubuntu 16.04 to 20.04, it’s time now to also talk a bit about the things that I didn’t like after upgrading. So here we go…
Back in 2009, I installed a derivate of Ubuntu 09.04 on a notebook ‘just to try it out’ and have remained with Ubuntu ever since. It was my first Linux I used full time as it was clear to me that closed source software connected to the Internet would not work for me but eventually against me. Over the years, I’ve upgraded to the Long Term Support (LTS) versions 10.04 12.04, 14.04 and finally to 16.04 in 2016. I skipped 18.04, as 16.04 was ‘good enough’ and, as far as the operating system is concerned, I don’t have to live on the bleeding edge. But since Ubuntu 16.04 will reach the end of its support cycle in 2021 and some annoying quirks had never been fixed over the years, I decided to jump on the 20.04 Long Term Support (LTS) bandwagon as soon as possible. After using the new system for two weeks now, it was time to write down the things I like about 20.04 and compare it to 16.04. In a follow up post I will rant a bit about the things that I don’t like, which are unfortunately just about as many.
A practical tip today: When I am abroad (o.k. that doesn’t happen a lot right now…) I do tend to occasionally change the network I am roaming in for a number of reasons. Unfortunately that usually takes a long time as the device searches in lots of bands for 3 different network technologies. But this process can be sped up significantly!
Over the years I kept upgrading my VDSL line and also my Wi-Fi network setup to benefit from increasing data rates offered by my fixed line carrier. With 802.11ac, I get around 350 Mbit/s in the downlink direction and 200 Mbit/s in the uplink direction with my Lenovo X250 notebook at my desk. When I move closer to the access point, I can get around 600 Mbit/s out of the link. But since I don’t work close to the access point, that’s more of a theoretical value for me. Now one could argue that this speed is more than enough for my Internet access. That’s true but since I also run a number of servers at home and occasionally transfer very large files or VM images, more is better and useful. So at some point it was time again to see if I could improve my Wi-Fi setup to get more than the 350 Mbit/s. 1 Gbit/s is the value to beat as that’s what I would get over Ethernet or fiber. Beyond that and I would have to upgrade my servers. As you can see in the title of this post, I could push my setup to a sustainable 800 Mbit/s at my desk.
One thing that has been bugging me for a while is how to better automate PDF generation from camera images that first need to be ‘exif orientation info cleaned‘, rotated, and shrunken. There are great tools and command line options available for each individual task but nothing really useful for GUI users to combine them into a single action. So I set out to build a GUI tool for Linux myself for the purpose.
One command line tool that has come in quite handy many times over the years when dealing with Wi-Fi networks is ‘iw’. With this command you can scan the Wi-Fi bands for networks and get the configuration and capabilities of each in a detailed list. It’s perfect to find out, for example, which options are supported by an Access Point. Here’s an example of my 802.11ac capable access point:
Most cellular network operators around the world still have a circuit switched core network today for voice and SMS services for their 2G/3G access networks. There are a few exceptions like one operator in India that launched with an LTE-only VoLTE network a few years ago. But apart from a few, that is the status quo. And it’s unlikely to change for most operators for the following reasons:
Out of the box, BigBlueButton and Greenlight do not have an easy way to link to an imprint or privacy statement. As I am operating a server for others, that’s a bit of a problem as I really want to inform people how the server and the service deals with private data. So when I had a bit of time, I had a closer look how an imprint and privacy statement link could be added to the footer (Powered by Greenlight…) on every page. In the end it boils down to modifying the Greenlight source which requires a bit of effort the first time around. However, once you know where to look and what to do, it can be done in a few minutes. So here’s my procedure: