Category Archives: Telecommunications

Note: Multiple VLAN Operation on Realtek RTL8111D NIC (& Others)

A while ago, I wrote about the wonders of having multiple VLANs at home, operating in a mixed “hybrid” access model. While it was great, I made a comment that simultaneous VLAN operation might not be possible under Windows depending … Continue reading

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Tech Flashback: Landline Sounds & Telephone Teardowns

I’ve always been interesting in telephones and networks, but I’ve never really thought of becoming a telephone collector. Rather unexpectedly, through a process of not-throwing-things-out (it’s not hoarding, I swear!), I now have a few phones but not much to … Continue reading

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Project: RasPBX (FreePBX/Asterisk) for the Home

In the early days of VoIP, most users were still using analog phones through ATAs and early softphones with services like Free World Dialup (later, FWD) which offered users free SIP accounts that could call within the FWD network for … Continue reading

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Tech Flashback: Radio Scanning (feat. Uniden UBC93XLT, DSE DTS-96, Icom IC-R20)

Towards my later high-school years, in the mid-2000s, armed with a small amount of money, I picked up the hobby of radio scanning. As a person who was curious by nature and had built a number of FM radio microphone … Continue reading

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Tested: VLANs in the Home Through “Dumb” Switches

Being someone who has used consumer gear for a long time, I’ve always been rather frustrated at their inconsistent or general lack of support for VLANs. Long used in corporate networks, the VLAN concept can be extremely useful for realising … Continue reading

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Tested: EDUP 11AC 1900M Dual-Band USB 3.0 Wireless Adapter (EP-AC1621)

In my quest for more wireless throughput, my hAP ac with three-stream 802.11ac wireless seemed to be the right choice. The problem was that I had absolutely no three-stream capable equipment to use with it – so I wasn’t seeing … Continue reading

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Teardown: D-Link DGS-1005A 5-Port & TP-Link TL-SG1008D 8-Port Gigabit Ethernet Switch

After bathing in nostalgia looking over my old switch and hub, it’s time to come clean – there’s a place for Fast Ethernet and that was a number of years ago. While some of the old equipment might still be … Continue reading

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Teardown: Mikrotik hAP ac & hAP mini Routerboards

After my house move earlier this year, I was in a bit of a networking dilemma. As every self-confessed nerd knows – internet access is critical. I recently upgraded to a TP-Link Archer C7 AC1750 access point at the other … Continue reading

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Tech Flashback: Ethernet Hubs & Switches (Netgear DS104 & Skymaster 8320-030)

Ethernet has been around for so many years that we hardly ever take the time to stop and think about it. We take it for granted that most desktop PCs come with Ethernet ports integrated on-board, Ethernet switches are cheap … Continue reading

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Review: Cowin E7 Pro Active Noise Cancelling Wireless Headphones

For anyone who travels frequently on public transport or is out and about quite often, having a decent set of headphones is indispensable. Besides allowing you to enjoy your own music and videos on the go, it can really help … Continue reading

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Investigating: Vodafone & Kogan Mobile Data Connection Issues

Access to the internet is so important nowadays that we rarely stop and think of the consequences of not having access to the internet until it stops working. Because of my recent relocation, getting access to the internet was an … Continue reading

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Mega Review: Fingbox Network Security and Troubleshooting Device

Earlier this year, I visited CeBIT where I stopped by the Fing stand and had a chat about their app and Fingbox device. The Fingbox was pitched as a network security and troubleshooting device which worked with the Fing app, … Continue reading

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Project: Record a K56flex Dial-Up Modem Connection

Inspired by my previous post made merely an hour ago, I set to work seeing if I could acquire a recording of a K56flex dial-up modem connection before it is too late. After all, both X2 and K56flex are more … Continue reading

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Project: Record a US Robotics “X2” Dial-Up Modem Connection

Throughout the long history of dial-up modems, higher connection speeds were always desired, but limitations in signal processing techniques and the phone lines themselves meant that achievable rates were always going to be limited. At various stages in time, the … Continue reading

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Note: Choosing 5Ghz Wi-Fi Channels for 802.11ac in AU

As society has moved towards ever smaller and more mobile devices, Wi-Fi has become an essential connectivity standard which we rely upon in our daily lives. It was initially made popular in the home by the availability of affordable, standardised … Continue reading

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Analysis: DVB-T2 Australian Television Networks Test Transmission

As I’ve been quite busy lately with work and job hunting, I really haven’t had much time to watch TV or look at the signals on the air. In fact, I’ve not had enough time even to look at Twitter, … Continue reading

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Challenge: Send a Fax Without a Landline or Fixed-Line Internet

A week ago, a friend approached me about sending off a fax. Despite the march of technology, this particular form had to either be mailed back (taking a few days and costing a decent amount of money) or faxed. My … Continue reading

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Review, Teardown: TBS 5220SE Universal TV Tuner USB Box

Recently, I embarked on an adventure to scan the C-band satellites in the sky. Unfortunately for me, my TBS 6925 tuners are both rather unwell and my Prof Revolution S2 8000’s are not doing much better by showing similar “bursts” … Continue reading

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Review: SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive m3.0 128Gb USB Flash Drive

It doesn’t happen very often, but once in a while, I need a new USB flash drive. This time around, I was looking for something cheap, of reputable make and 128Gb capacity. Interestingly, looking around my local computer shop, the … Continue reading

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Event: CeBIT Australia 2018 Exhibition (15-17 May)

It’s become a ritual – every year, around this time, CeBIT comes to Sydney and I pay them a visit. It’s always a privilege to be able to walk around the expo to see who’s around, what’s new and catch-up … Continue reading

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Teardown: Generic Wall-Mountable Passive PoE Midspan Injector

For a lot of modern networked devices, Power over Ethernet (PoE) is a big convenience, allowing the one cable to power a remote device (be it an access point, camera, etc.) and supply the data connectivity to it. While there … Continue reading

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Repair: Xiaomi Redmi Note 2 Power Button

I bought my Xiaomi Redmi Note 2 back at the beginning of 2016 and it’s served as both my data-phone (browsing, data SIM) for a year and as a phone-phone (calls, SMS) for the remainder. It was good value when … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 9: 172E Eutelsat 172B, 180E Intelsat 18, 177W NSS 9

In the final installment, I look at the three easternmost satellites with signals receivable in Sydney, namely Eutelsat 172B, Intelsat 18 and NSS9. Owing to their positioning and the markets which they serve, the latter two are circularly polarized and … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 8: ~154E Mystery?, 166E Intelsat 19, 169E Intelsat 805

By now, we’re at the satellites which are pretty much at the highest elevation in Sydney. Owing to the fact that satellites aren’t covering the entire belt, even though we’ve only looked through about 50% of the arc, it covers … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 7: 142E-150E (?) Unidentified/Mystery Satellites

The last post ended on a semi mystery at around 140°E which I believed to be Express AM5. A look at the Lyngsat satellite chart shows that there aren’t any known C-band satellites between 138°E Telstar 18 and 166°E Intelsat … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 6: 134E Apstar 6, 138E Telstar 18, 140E Express AM5 (?)

The satellite-hunting story continues (thanks to a little more free time), this time looking at Apstar 6, Telstar 18 and what I believe to be Express AM5. These spectrums were taken during the period of 24th-26th March, but I’ve only … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 5: 125E ChinaSat 6A, 128.5E LaoSat 1 (?), 132E Vinasat 1

This part of my satellite hunting adventure looks at ChinaSat 6A, what I suspect to be LaoSat 1 and Vinasat 1. 125°E ChinaSat 6A ChinaSat 6A has a very similar role to ChinaSat 6B, carrying a large number of carriers … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 4: 115.5E ChinaSat 6B, 120E AsiaSat 6, 122E AsiaSat 9

In part four of the series, I continue my C-band satellite hunting adventure by moving up the belt. This post looks at 115.5 degrees East (ChinaSat 6B), 120 degrees East (AsiaSat 6) and 122 degrees East (AsiaSat 9). 115.5°E ChinaSat … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 3: 100.5E AsiaSat 5, 105.5E AsiaSat 7, 113E Palapa D

Continuing on my quest to hunt all the C-band satellites in sight, this post continues the series up from the western horizon to visit AsiaSat 5, AsiaSat 7 and Palapa D. 100.5°E AsiaSat 5 AsiaSat 5 serves direct to home … Continue reading

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C-band Sats – Part 2: 83E G-Sat 10(?), 87.5E ChinaSat 12, 91.5E Measat 3/3a

I decided to start my scan from the western horizon upward. The first challenge was attempting to receive the satellite that is the lowest possible elevation to the west, then tracking the belt upwards to reach the other satellites. At … Continue reading

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