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UniFi Protect NVR direct connection from separate Network

This tutorial will show you how to configure your firewall to allow a direct connection to UniFi Protect from devices located on a separate network (or VLAN). For this tutorial, I will be using OPNSense as an example but it should also be a very similar setup on pfSense.

If you are like me and possess UniFi products, especially cameras and a network video recorder (NVR), configured to be on a separate network (or VLAN) to isolate your cameras from your LAN, this tutorial is for you.

It's been very frustrating not to be able to configure an IP address in the UniFi Protect App to force it to connect locally to the NVR when the clients reside on a separate network. This caused Protect to load through the UniFi Cloud access, causing delays (or sluggish opening when loading the App).

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Login Script - Drive Mapping

I decided to write a quick article on Login Script after I noticed that a lot of people were asking about "automated" mapping drive process at login. Most answers I found on the Internet were connected to Microsoft Active Directory and Group Policy (GPO). Not a lot of articles were helping home users & small business who are configured under Workgroups rather than Domains. If you want a simple solution using a batch file (.bat) this article is for you! 

Sure there are plenty of ways to do this, whether it's through PowerShell, VBS or Windows itself (right click and map drive) which involves "manual labour" on every computer and possibly under each users' profile if they have access to different drives... Then if you add or remove shares on your network, well guess what? Yes, another round of manual labour is waiting for you. There is a simple way to map network drives (shares) at login and I will show you how.

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Bell Fibe Internet & IPTV with pfsense

If you go through my Blog, you will notice that I wrote an article in January 2018 in regards to using your own router with Bell Fibe. In the previous Blog I was giving people the option to either activate the advanced DNZ option on their Home Hub 3000 (HH3000) or simply remove the HH3000. I was suggesting devices to handle the Fiber Optic conversion and referred to Forums where you were able to find posts on how to accomplish this and configure your systems.

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WIFI QR Code Generator

​Folks, this one will be a short post but I wanted to share with you this little tool a friend of mine stumbled upon and shared with me. This, in my opinion is a great tool making every one's life easier! 

So , if you are like me and you are using a separate WIFI Network for your "Guests", this one is for you my friends!!! Have you ever thought about an easier way to share your WIFI Network credentials with your family and friends? Especially if like me, you have some people in your entourage who are not too "Tech Savy"?!.... A way where you don't even have to give anyone your SSID and password? 

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Best Free Software for your Workstation

I have been looking around for a while trying and testing different types of freeware (or free software) and I wanted to share with you the ones I chose. I am running Windows 7 therefore this list will be focusing on Microsoft Windows compatible products. End users often don't have the same means ($$$) than businesses therefore when you can find a freeware that does the job, why not!?

You all know that with the Internet the list and choices are almost infinite. This post is about sharing with you my list of freeware. As far as I know and to the best of my knowledge, these freeware are ad and spyware free. If you are aware of freeware on my list containing spyware, please let me know, I would appreciate that and I am sure that everyone will benefit for it.

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Home Network - New Residence

Like I was saying in my previous post from February 2016, over the years after setting up many Networks, most Network Administrators build and organize their own personal Network differently from the general public. Either by doing it over the top (as seen by many end user) or by using specialized / commercial grade equipment which are not usually used by end users because of its complexity. Personally I would put myself in the category "over the top" but in my defence, this is now a hobby for me and this is how I stay current and up to date with my skills. I also use commercial grade equipment as I found that I had limited options, especially with configuration using the regular device / equipment sold in your local store like Staples or Best Buy.

Well, since my last post guess what? Yes, I had to move which means that I had to start all over again my design! I kept the same ethic and meticulous attention in setting up my new environment but I sold and replace some of my equipment which obviously impacted my setup.

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Bell Fibe with your own Router

If you are like me, you like using your own device instead of the one provided by your Internet provider.  In my case my Internet provider is Bell Aliant and they provided me with this "high tech" Bell Home Hub 3000!  Do I need it, the answer is absolutely NOT!  Do I have the choice... Well most will say No, but here's the kicker: There's way to work things out!  Over the last few years I did some research and tried many types of configuration.  You will find a lot of scattered information regarding this topic, some posts from technical people, other posts from not so technical people if you know what I mean.  I am hoping to help you out a bit here with these 2 "best" alternatives I found (so far).

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Joomla Spambots / Spammers Registration

​This is a quick article where I will share with you some tips on how to prevent or at least reduce spammers and spambots from registering and posting articles on your Joomla Website.  If you are in the same boat as me, a few times a week you receive notifications about new user accounts created on your site but after looking at the accounts and/or their posts, you quickly found out that these were spammers therefore unwanted "friends".  Also, looking at their email address, you probably noticed that some of their addresses were from the same domain or even top level domain.  Here's what I did to prevent and reduce spammers from registering and accessing my site.

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Training / Teaching Videos

IT is not what it was many years ago, I am talking before the evolution of the Internet as we know it today!  Back in the days, when you were bumping into a "serious" problem, well hope you had good contacts and/or friends with excellent knowledge or a good library!  Last resort there was always the company that made the appliance / software that could help but good luck it they were not 24/7!  Not all the problems happened on a Monday to Friday basis between 8pm to 4pm and that's if you were in the same time zone than your service provider! 

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Social Media Hacking

Have you ever had issues with any of your accounts ie: email, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ etc.?  When I say issues, I mean people trying to take over your username, profile or account...  How many times did you see a post/message saying "Don't accept friend request from so and so he stole my profile picture"?

Well somebody on Twitter has an interesting story after his username was literally stolen from him!  From Twitter to GoDaddy to Paypal and Facebook, everything fell apart!

Mr. Naoki Hiroshima or @N as his Twitter username states had to fight to get his own identity back! Here below is his story, you can find the original post here. Since it was an interesting story, I copied it here in case the original link becomes unavailable.

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Home Network

Over the years after setting up many Networks, most Network Administrators build and organize their own personal Network differently from the general public. Either by doing it over the top (as seen by many end user) or by using specialized / commercial grade equipment which are not usually used by the end user because of its complexity. I always loved working on my personal local area network (LAN).  I try to be organized, cleaned and as functional as I can, using my past experience to optimize and setup my own LAN. I moved a few times, that's unfortunate because I had to start all over again which is a lot of work if you consider all the wiring involved but I finally came with a decent setup (in my opinion).

After working long hours wiring the house, configuring the switches, servers, firewalls etc. and also making sure everything was done "properly" but also neat and visually appealing I decided to share with you the final result (no more major updates or changes planned).  This setup reflects the best of my knowledge, in no way I am claiming to be a "know it all" or even an expert.  

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Installing MAC OS X on ESXi

Installing Mac OS X on a VMWare machine can be tricky believe me, I know, I just did it! Keep in mind that I am a PC kind of guy, my knowledge with Mac is extremely limited, to the point where I never owned a Mac or even fixed one! 

When customers were asking me to troubleshoot and fix their Apple products, I was referring them to another company, the real "specialist" since I did not support Apple products.

I spent 2 nights, few hours per night trying to install a VM running Mac OS X on my ESXi Server, running on a Dell 2950 Server so obviously not a genuine Apple machine. I thought that it would be nice and maybe helpful for others to post how I did it.
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Understanding CIDR

CIDR (sometimes called supernetting) is a way to allow more flexible allocation of Internet Protocol (IP) addresses than it was possible with the original system of IP address classes.

CIDR stands for Classless Inter-Domain Routingwas created back in 1993 because IPV4 was slowly running out of IP addresses, that's when IPV6 was created hoping to solve this problem.  Although IPV6 is still not widely use, more appliances/devices now support IPV6 Protocols so if need be, people would be able to implement this new standard.  IPV4 is a 32-bit standard vs 128-bit for IPV6 which gives us an almost unlimited range of addresses.

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