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2005 Lotus Elise
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Discussion Starter #1
Been using Pi's for random stuff for the past 5 years, from gaming stations, to more recently, PiHoles. PiHoles are like a adblocker for your router. The ads get blocked before they even get to your computer. Annoying 15 second youtube ads? GONE. Annoying adds on random webapges? GONE. This one was a bit tricky as Xfinity locks down their routers pretty good not allowing you to set a Primary DNS. But I was able to work around it and eventually get it to work. Still dialing in all the cell phones in the house, but that will be a fight for another day. For some Stats In the 4 hours I have had it running, the Pi took in 15288 requests and blocked 1823 of them, batting average of 11.9%. Thats with 357k Spam Domains on the blocklist. Not all of these requests are spam, which is why you select servers to filter the good/bad ones. My eyes are basically bleeding after 2 days of Pi projects. Any other programmers or Pi lovers here?
 

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I've been using a pihole on RPI3 for a year now. Works great.

2,161,331 domains on the block list.
Force youtube, google, bing to safe search only
Block all other search engines I can't enforce safe mode on. I have children.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've been using a pihole on RPI3 for a year now. Works great.

2,161,331 domains on the block list.
Force youtube, google, bing to safe search only
Block all other search engines I can't enforce safe mode on. I have children.
That's great! I'll have to do that eventually, my 4 year old plays Roblox and Minecraft and doesnt use the browser. I still have some tweaking to do on it, mainly getting the cell phones to work on it, they are coming up on the admin page and showing blocked requests but things are still getting through, I'll have to tighten that up next week during some spare time.
 

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On my way to futz around with racecar datalogging with RaceCapture by Autosport Labs using Raspberry Pi. It'll hopefully serve as in-car Control/Display/Lap Timer as well as broadcasting live telemetry via 3.5/4G network...
I also want to do some rudimentary poking around CAN bus without using a laptop or additional hardware and maybe use the skills learned from doing all of that to run maybe home automation or whatnot.
I'm not well versed in it, so there will be quite a learning curve.
 

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I used one a year or 2 back for some work stuff... and considered exploring more with it. but I do software dev so after 8+ hours on my machine for work, i tend to want to go play with cars when i clock out!!

i did look into the CAN bus stuff for Pi... but mostly just reading and didn't actually grab my Pi and try anything
 

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On my way to futz around with racecar datalogging with RaceCapture by Autosport Labs using Raspberry Pi. It'll hopefully serve as in-car Control/Display/Lap Timer as well as broadcasting live telemetry via 3.5/4G network...
I also want to do some rudimentary poking around CAN bus without using a laptop or additional hardware and maybe use the skills learned from doing all of that to run maybe home automation or whatnot.
I'm not well versed in it, so there will be quite a learning curve.
My brother has done some work in this area with a Touring 4 Mazda Club Sport.


He also created an iPhone/iPad app called Driver Monitor. Using transponder data from RaceMonitor and RaceHero, it acts as a "spotter" to inform the driver of his lap time, position, seconds behind the car ahead, seconds ahead of the car behind. So if you are your own team, this is really helpful.


Of course this could be bad advice....
 

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That's great! I'll have to do that eventually, my 4 year old plays Roblox and Minecraft and doesnt use the browser. I still have some tweaking to do on it, mainly getting the cell phones to work on it, they are coming up on the admin page and showing blocked requests but things are still getting through, I'll have to tighten that up next week during some spare time.
Android phones? They ignore your local DNS settings and use Google's DNS servers (8.8.8.8, 8.8.4.4) bypassing the Pihole. You'll have to configure your router to redirect all DNS (UDP/53) requests to the pihole to fix it. Blocking outbound UDP/53 from hosts other than your Pihole is a good idea to prevent circumventing the pihole filters.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Android phones? They ignore your local DNS settings and use Google's DNS servers (8.8.8.8, 8.8.4.4) bypassing the Pihole. You'll have to configure your router to redirect all DNS (UDP/53) requests to the pihole to fix it. Blocking outbound UDP/53 from hosts other than your Pihole is a good idea to prevent circumventing the pihole filters.
Yup Android! Unfortunately Comcast owned routers do not allow you to set a primary DNS to direct to, what it did allow me to do was set a start and a finish (could not be the same) so I had the Piholes ip address in the middle. It works on my Samsung S7 that my son uses for games (albiet no network connection, only wifi). It still blocks ads on all the cell phones in the house, however only my phone (go figure) it nukes the network until I update the profile in the settings. Looks like in order for me to circumvent this issue im going to need to get a Wireless router that is not owned by Comcast. The way I have it now works but I dont want to settle for all the issues its given my cell phone, so maybe in the future ill upgrade to a personal router.

Its crazy because I am used to having free reign with any type of computers I want, programming, creating and digging into files, but once you try to dig into something like this, a basic router stops you! Crazy.
 

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You probably want to put your own high quality router on the inside anyways. I have AT&T and their modem/router/wireless hub is just set up to pass the signals through to my Asus unit that I have total control over and keep up to date on all patches/updates. Providers lock down their routers usually and the never get updated. Kind of stinks. I wish AT&T would have offered just a modem but they don't do that.
 
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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
You probably want to put your own high quality router on the inside anyways. I have AT&T and their modem/router/wireless hub is just set up to pass the signals through to my Asus unit that I have total control over and keep up to date on all patches/updates. Providers lock down their routers usually and the never get updated. Kind of stinks. I wish AT&T would have offered just a modem but they don't do that.
I run Asus everything. With the exception of my new Curved Samsung monitor. I have 2 desktops I built packed full of Asus parts, as well as a Asus gaming laptop. Ive been eyeing Asus gaming routers for the past few years but honestly the Comcast routers have done a decent job thus far. But looks like that time is about to change. Which Asus unit do you have? Ive always had a great relationship with Asus, from their motherboards to their 144hz monitors, and have never had to do a RMA. Currently Running a Asus SUPER 2080, Asus ROG Maximus XIHERO with WIFI, Intel I7 Overclocked to 45, (Watercooled), 64GB Ram, a M2 1TB Drive and 2 Other drives, 1 with the OS and another for backup. The other PC which my son uses now has all those things just a few years older, instead of a SUPER 2080 it had a R9 390X and some other parts that were popular at the time.

For reference, here is one of the first things I built with a Raspberry Pi! Its currently hooked up in my Bar/Barn/Gym.


Rasbian running on it

The Media Player

 
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2020 Evora GT in Formula Red, coordinated black+red interior, windowed engine hatch
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Any other programmers or Pi lovers here?
Not a Raspberry PI user, but as my handle should suggest definitely an Engineer with plenty of code in my background! A large percentage of my career has been doing embedded systems which means hardware, firmware, sensors, and the like. I completely relate to what you're doing and the worn-down feeling after a solid 48 hour development session. But if it weren't fun, we wouldn't be doing it - right?!?
 

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I run Asus everything. With the exception of my new Curved Samsung monitor. I have 2 desktops I built packed full of Asus parts, as well as a Asus gaming laptop. Ive been eyeing Asus gaming routers for the past few years but honestly the Comcast routers have done a decent job thus far. But looks like that time is about to change. Which Asus unit do you have? Ive always had a great relationship with Asus, from their motherboards to their 144hz monitors, and have never had to do a RMA. Currently Running a Asus SUPER 2080, Asus ROG Maximus XIHERO with WIFI, Intel I7 Overclocked to 45, (Watercooled), 64GB Ram, a M2 1TB Drive and 2 Other drives, 1 with the OS and another for backup. The other PC which my son uses now has all those things just a few years older, instead of a SUPER 2080 it had a R9 390X and some other parts that were popular at the time.

For reference, here is one of the first things I built with a Raspberry Pi! Its currently hooked up in my Bar/Barn/Gym.


Rasbian running on it

The Media Player

So I am running a Asus RT-AC68P which I have had for 3 years and it is solid. It gives me the ability to put up multiple guest networks as required and that has come in handy. It also is very easy to configure for gaming and my Plex server. Overall, one of the best investments in my home network. I also love Asus components in my desktops and the monitors are a steal for the quality you get. We should talk sometime, I want to know more about your Pi setups.
 
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2005 Lotus Elise
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Discussion Starter #13
So I am running a Asus RT-AC68P which I have had for 3 years and it is solid. It gives me the ability to put up multiple guest networks as required and that has come in handy. It also is very easy to configure for gaming and my Plex server. Overall, one of the best investments in my home network. I also love Asus components in my desktops and the monitors are a steal for the quality you get. We should talk sometime, I want to know more about your Pi setups.
Looks like that Asus RT-AC68P is currently unavailable for sale, looks like its been discontinued or out of stock. Ill probably go for a 3100 series since it can cover a area of 5000 SqFt. Right now only a portion of my barn is covered with wifi and will get spotty going into it, this should reach out and at least give me coverage in it. The quality of Asus monitor is spectacular, however I couldn't justify the price for their 32in curved 144hz monitor. I ended up getting a Samsung 144hz with same specs for about $400.00 less and I am wowed by how awesome it is. Let me know what you would like help with and Id be happy to help! They can literally be used for anything, from being setup to turn on lights when you go into your house, to scaring birds away from gardens. Truly a great invention.
 

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2005 Elise LSS Saffron Yellow
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The major reason I haven't bothered with a pi hole is that I'm running uMatrix on all the browsers and am using an Asus RT-N16 running Tomato (with port 53 interception turned on) as my router. On the other end I'm pointing at the OpenDNS servers and have a (free for home use) Umbrella account.

Not much gets by all that. The cell phones tend to go out over the mobile data network as I generally leave WiFi turned off (because crappy slow DSL) so that all gets intercepted, but pretty much all the cell phone web browsing that gets done is on my work phone and is generally to about eight known sites...not a lot of risk (or spam) there either. I buy no-cell tablets for the family, so all their connectivity is through the highly curated DSL connection.

I'm still looking for the 'killer app' for an rPi. A pi hole might be it if my connectivity choices change around here.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The major reason I haven't bothered with a pi hole is that I'm running uMatrix on all the browsers and am using an Asus RT-N16 running Tomato (with port 53 interception turned on) as my router. On the other end I'm pointing at the OpenDNS servers and have a (free for home use) Umbrella account.

Not much gets by all that. The cell phones tend to go out over the mobile data network as I generally leave WiFi turned off (because crappy slow DSL) so that all gets intercepted, but pretty much all the cell phone web browsing that gets done is on my work phone and is generally to about eight known sites...not a lot of risk (or spam) there either. I buy no-cell tablets for the family, so all their connectivity is through the highly curated DSL connection.

I'm still looking for the 'killer app' for an rPi. A pi hole might be it if my connectivity choices change around here.

Id be willing to bet you can find a "killer app" for the Rpi! For me it was Retropie (Emulation Station). Able to create a library of all the retro games I grew up with (Snes/Genesis Era), and tweak the emulator to my needs and wants is killer. My friends overseas also enjoy getting a care package with a RetroPi inside, great morale booster! I have about 1.5 gigabytes worth of RPI magazines packed with projects and all that fun stuff. But looks like your buttoned up pretty good! Im jelous!
 

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Pihole is really great. I run my UniFi controller off of a raspberry pi as well at home and it’s rock solid.
On a previous Miata track car i did experiment with some IR sensors measuring tire temps and streaming the data live to my phone via a raspberry Pi on the car running a little webserver. Fun little experiment!
 

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So this is off-topic, but with the correct user set. We can move the thread if there is interest as this ties in a bit to the security angle I am interested in. 2 questions: Is there value in VPN pitched by everyone these days? I know what VPN is from a point to point standpoint, but using in a home network wouldn't it rely on not being targeted prior to the transmitting end? That is to say that you are secure between you and the VPN decoder on the ISP side, but are you not anonymous on that end. For this, I was looking at Winston. Anyone have any thoughts on this. Beyond ad blocking, I want to keep the data hoovers at bay, legal and otherwise.

FWIW, I agree with you guys on Asus. Back in the day when I was working with a Semi Company, ASUS was a huge customer of ours. I can't count the number of times I've been to their facilities in Taiwan. We have 4 Asus routers in a mesh network with the 2 main routers backhauling between each other with a dedicated 5G WiFi band. Ultimately, I will hard wire them all to do the backhaul on wires. For our shop I am in the process of wiring Cat6 and trenching between the house so the wired and wireless can be tied together.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
So this is off-topic, but with the correct user set. We can move the thread if there is interest as this ties in a bit to the security angle I am interested in. 2 questions: Is there value in VPN pitched by everyone these days? I know what VPN is from a point to point standpoint, but using in a home network wouldn't it rely on not being targeted prior to the transmitting end? That is to say that you are secure between you and the VPN decoder on the ISP side, but are you not anonymous on that end. For this, I was looking at Winston. Anyone have any thoughts on this. Beyond ad blocking, I want to keep the data hoovers at bay, legal and otherwise.

FWIW, I agree with you guys on Asus. Back in the day when I was working with a Semi Company, ASUS was a huge customer of ours. I can't count the number of times I've been to their facilities in Taiwan. We have 4 Asus routers in a mesh network with the 2 main routers backhauling between each other with a dedicated 5G WiFi band. Ultimately, I will hard wire them all to do the backhaul on wires. For our shop I am in the process of wiring Cat6 and trenching between the house so the wired and wireless can be tied together.
You can run Pihole and a VPN on the same Pi concurrently to achieve your desired effect on your network. For a normal user (IE not being targeted by any agency or someone with a bit of time) a VPN is fine, it makes you feel comfortable that when you look up porn or look up whatever your vice is, maybe its just that you don't want your information being made available or whatever. But if you are doing bad stuff, a VPN is not going to stop people from finding you and watching what you do. You have to realize that everything has built in back doors and nothing is ever "secure".

Buy a pi for $35 dollars, hook it up to your router and give it a go. PIVPN: Simplest way to setup a VPN

Edit- Im not sure about winston, as I typically build my own stuff. But I would wonder how big of an effect that box would have on your internet. Looks like it may lower your connection a bit. Not sure though, but would think it would make your net slower filtering all that stuff. At 99 dollars, than 9.99 a month, I would try something else first. I think a Pihole with a PIVIPN would be your best bet. As it looks like the winston is a bit harsher than it needs to be, bouncing you all over the globe and not allowing you to certain us sites periodically.
 

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You can run Pihole and a VPN on the same Pi concurrently to achieve your desired effect on your network. For a normal user (IE not being targeted by any agency or someone with a bit of time) a VPN is fine, it makes you feel comfortable that when you look up porn or look up whatever your vice is, maybe its just that you don't want your information being made available or whatever. But if you are doing bad stuff, a VPN is not going to stop people from finding you and watching what you do. You have to realize that everything has built in back doors and nothing is ever "secure".

Buy a pi for $35 dollars, hook it up to your router and give it a go. PIVPN: Simplest way to setup a VPN

Edit- Im not sure about winston, as I typically build my own stuff. But I would wonder how big of an effect that box would have on your internet. Looks like it may lower your connection a bit. Not sure though, but would think it would make your net slower filtering all that stuff. At 99 dollars, than 9.99 a month, I would try something else first. I think a Pihole with a PIVIPN would be your best bet. As it looks like the winston is a bit harsher than it needs to be, bouncing you all over the globe and not allowing you to certain us sites periodically.
I hate the targeted advertising and anyone that does online banking/investment has to be fairly worried about security since there is a new hack announced every other day where someone coughed up all their users passwords.

The performance hit from Winston is a concern. I've been known to do some online gaming from time to time and can't have those ping-times falling! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I hate the targeted advertising and anyone that does online banking/investment has to be fairly worried about security since there is a new hack announced every other day where someone coughed up all their users passwords.

The performance hit from Winston is a concern. I've been known to do some online gaming from time to time and can't have those ping-times falling! :)
Ive actually found my username and passwords on google. Some of my stuff was compromised through some websites that had **** security. I was able to type my email in, and find locked websites with my username and plain text password on it, when I tried to access that webpage, it had a login and password, but I was bale to see a bit from the google search engine. It was a password I had used years ago so I just went to every website that used that password and deleted the account or left it since I wasnt using that password anymore.

The Pi Hole takes care of 99% of ads, targeted and all. The hacks are unfortunately a world we live in and are a risk that everyone takes. Make sure your bank notifies you if they are part of a hack, most of them do it to late, IE years later. Just keep changing your password and set up biometric data if you can.
 
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