News archive June 2014 - Koos van den Hout

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2014-06-29 (Trying SO-50 in portable mode, waving the Arrow antenna in the backyard and with a 5w radio. Someone...)
Google+Koos van den Hout : Trying SO-50 in portable mode, waving the Arrow antenna in the backyard and with a 5w radio. Someone has heard himself very clear and long over the satellite calling 'oh la' and for the rest it was very hard to understand callsigns and nobody responded to my CQs.
I don't see the point in just pointing high power at this satellite and making it nearly unusable for other amateur radio operators.

Sorry for ranting a bit, most here are probably aware of this and use SSB satellites, but I had to get this of my chest. Other times I had more luck, so it's not impossible to work SO-50 portable.
#amateursatellite #pileup 
2014-06-22 Recording an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station contact
Friday evening I recorded the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact between the International Space Station in space and Focus Camp, Candriai, Italy / Euro Space Center, Redu, Belgium. I used the Arrow satellite antenna on a tripod and my Commtel com225 scanner to tune in to the downlink signal since that scanner has both an internal speaker and a line output for a tape recorder.
Recording ARISS contact
Recording ARISS contact - Laptop, recording ARISS contact, scanner, Arrow satellite antenna on tripod
Recording ARISS contact
Recording ARISS contact - Laptop with gpredict, backup radio, scanner tuned to 145.800
I had a bit of a problem setting up my laptop to have the input in line input mode, but after I fixed that I was able to record audio from the scanner while listening. The results didn't turn out very well, the antenna was in our backyard between houses which means houses are always in the way of weak signals until the object is right overhead. And the antenna is quite directional on 2 meter, so an azimuth/elevation rotor would have helped a bit in getting the best signal.

But I do have audio of some of the answers. I edited the audio to lower the noise audio level and the recording is limited to the part where I successfully recorded audio. The voice of the astronaut sinking away in the noise at the end is a bit of a "Major Tom" moment.
Listen to audio attachment:
MP3 media: Audio from ARISS contact recorded at JO22nc by PD4KH 2014-06-20 (rightclick, select save-as to download)

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2014-06-20 (#)
An interesting pattern in ssh attempts showing up:
2014-06-15 18:51:50,162 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-15 20:00:04,342 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-16 00:07:24,993 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-16 01:37:59,232 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-16 10:15:07,103 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-16 14:06:48,322 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-16 17:51:34,582 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-16 23:02:56,102 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-17 03:56:24,562 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-17 04:25:11,755 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-17 05:50:34,932 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-18 03:24:28,493 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-18 13:49:56,752 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-18 20:15:58,272 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-18 20:31:36,502 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-19 10:44:56,172 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-19 18:59:28,523 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-19 19:43:35,732 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-20 06:07:37,302 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-20 08:31:06,712 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-20 09:11:55,992 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-20 13:43:57,563 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
2014-06-20 14:56:07,282 fail2ban.actions: WARNING [ssh] Ban
All addresses part of this block:
inetnum: -
netname:        CHINANET-ZJ-HU
country:        CN
descr:          CHINANET-ZJ Huzhou node network
descr:          Zhejiang Telecom
And most from the subblock:
inetnum: -
country:        CN
More places on the web report attacks from this IP range.

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2014-06-18 (#)
Interesting change of mind from the webinterface of the Fritz!Box. First page with lynx:
   Your browser does not support XHTML frames.

   However, you can use the FRITZ!Box user interface without any
But the next page says:
Welcome to your FRITZ!Box

   Log in using your password.
   Password ____________________
   Forgot your password?
   (Submit) Log In

   The functions on this page require JavaScript. Enable JavaScript in
   your browser and reload the page.
And entering the right password doesn't change a thing, I get the same page back. With debug information that shows I entered the right password...

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2014-06-16 (#)
Ages (almost a year) since I did a DVB-T service scan at home. Nothing changes in the DVB-T landscape at the moment: exactly the same multiplexes as a year earlier at the same location with the same antenna without preamp.

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2014-06-15 (#)
Mooi stukje op 60 Jaar radio via FM in Nederland. Waarbij 'FM radio' natuurlijk voluit betekent: radio uitzendingen in de FM standaard in VHF band II, van 87.5 MHz tot 108 MHz. Opmerkelijke zaken: FM radio is in Nederland begonnen als 'steunzender' voor een gebied met slechte dekking van de AM zenders: de eerste FM zender was voor Hilversum 1 vanuit Hulsberg.

En ook opmerkelijk is dat er jarenlang een tekort aan FM frequenties in Nederland zou zijn totdat met operatie Zerobase de frequenties opnieuw ingedeeld en toebedeeld werden. Toen was er ineens genoeg ruimte voor commerciële radio. Waarbij sommige radiostations nu steunzenders gebruiken die maar een heel klein gebied bestrijken. Zonder de toegenomen kwaliteit van FM radio ontvangers en RDS zou dit niet mogelijk zijn geweest volgens mij. Mijn wekkerradio is al 15 jaar oud en heeft moeite met het feit dat de zenders hier in Utrecht dicht op elkaar zitten. Maar die stemt volgens mij ook nog af met een afstemcondensator.

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2014-06-14 Further tries with the SO-50 amateur satellite
A pass of the radio amateur satellite SO-50 this morning in which I concentrated on the probable shift in downlink frequency. It turned out the shift is probably not more than 5 kHz (my radio has no 2.5 kHz steps). I tried calling CQ but no answers.

In general I am noticing now that usable passes are rare at the moment. With my limited setup and other things taking my time I have a lot of wishes for a usable pass: elevation must be over 70⁰ and the pass must be at a reasonable time in the evening or on a weekend day with no other plans. I'm not a nightowl like a lot of radio amateurs seem to be. So the week in which I made my first satellite contact with GS3PYE/P was quite special: there were 2 passes in that week matching all requirements for both locations.

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2014-06-13 (#)
The smarthub on the Samsung TV is reporting that there is no Internet connection, but everything else works. The problem:
22:05:56.403803 IP (tos 0x0, ttl 64, id 10597, offset 0, flags [DF], proto UDP (17), length 62) > [udp sum ok] 17215+ A? (34)
22:05:56.902244 IP (tos 0x0, ttl 64, id 0, offset 0, flags [DF], proto UDP (17), length 62) > [udp sum ok] 41765 ServFail q: A? 0/0/0 (34)
It needs, which fails at the moment. So every application I try on the TV fails...

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2014-06-10 (#)
We zijn op het punt dat oplichters iemand in kunnen huren die de phishing mails in behoorlijk nederlands schrijft:
Geachte klant
Uw ICS creditcard is opgeschort, omdat er een fout is gevonden in uw creditcardinformatie.
De reden van de fout is niet zeker, maar om veiligheidsredenen hebben we uw creditcard tijdelijk opgeschort.
U moet uw informatie bijwerken om deze creditcard weer te kunnen gebruiken.

Wat is ICS?
ICS staat voor International Card Services. Dit bedrijf geeft creditcards uit aan banken, die deze weer aan hun klanten verlenen.
Alle vertrouwelijke gegevens staan op onze servers en gaan hier dan ook respect mee om.

Met vriendelijke groet,
Ruben Sloss
ICS Cards Nederland
Postbus 23225
1100 DS Diemen
En dan een link naar een phishing-site die gehost lijkt op een server van een hele andere derde partij waar dus op ingebroken is.

Ik weet niet of er echt een Ruben Sloss bij ICS werkt, maar die zal niet heel blij zijn.

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2014-06-09 Heard LituanicaSAT-1 this time
A bit more luck on a LituanicaSAT-1 pass Saturday evening: this time I could understand at least one callsign. Hearing a known callsign helps: it was Peter Goodhall 2E0SQL. I tried answering but this failed. A mail exchange later confirmed I heard him calling so at least I heard it all right.

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2014-06-07 (Just made a contact via SO-50 on a 88⁰ pass over my home location with PD5DJ. It has been mentioned ...)
Google+Koos van den Hout : Just made a contact via SO-50 on a 88⁰ pass over my home location with PD5DJ. It has been mentioned a few times the output frequency of SO-50 may have shifted downwards a bit, I can agree on that as I had to select the next downward frequency earlier than gpredict was showing it. I can't give exact numbers as I was very busy hearing other QSOs and making the contact.
My second satellite QSO, so I'm very happy that it worked out!
2014-06-07 Another success in radio amateur satellite contacts
Success: I made a contact via SO-50 with PD5DJ. This was on a high (88⁰ degree elevation) pass of SO-50. The output frequency of SO-50 seems to have shifted a bit so I had to select the 'next' downlink frequency earlier than gpredict was showing them.

I will send a card via the QSL bureau to PD5DJ, this is my second amateur satellite radio contact.

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2014-06-06 Following the ISEE-3 satellite
There are great things happening at the moment: the NASA ISEE-3 satellite from 1978 is going to pass earth again in August 2014. Due to budget cuts and cleanups at NASA they decided to not do anything with the satellite. International Cometary Explorer - Wikipedia.

The first signals from this satellite were received in March: AMSAT-DL and Bochum Observatory Detect ISEE-3 Transmitters - Space College and since that moment people have been busy with it. The satellite was supposed to be switched off but it wasn't completely switched off and it receives enough solar power to overcome the lack of energy storage. A project was started named the ISEE-3 Reboot Project - Space College to get in touch with the satellite again and control it to make the course correction to return to the original orbit. With crowdfunding this project was able to get started quickly and the project received the control keys from NASA to be able to command the satellite. The first commands were successfull: Happy Dance Video: First Successful ISEE-3 Commanding - Space College when the satellite was ordered to send more telemetry data.

I'm following this story as I think it's great: commanding a satellite that has been in space for 36 years. The amateur radio angle is that recent developments in amateur radio have made this possible: the kind of specialized equipment that was needed in 1978 is now done with software defined radio and really good amplifiers.

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2014-06-06 (#)
I switched the work smartphone from a Nokia E71 to an HTC Desire.

One thing I always liked in the 'business' Nokia phones was the option to switch the 'Profile' for a set time, switching back to the previous profile afterwards. The 'Profile' is the whole of settings for ringtone, vibrate and other notification options. What I used it for was setting a quiet profile at the beginning of a meeting and having it revert back at the appointed time of the end of the meeting.

So I wanted this on Android. It was a bit of searching and asking, but I found Llama - Location Profiles which does 80% of the work: switching profiles automatically based on location (mainly using cell towers), time of day, other events. And it can do what I want: stay at a certain profile for a given time.

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2014-06-05 Tried LituanicaSAT-1 again
Around midnight last night there was a pass of LituanicaSAT-1. After my earlier attempts and the announcement it would switch off the transponder at around 01:00 UTC on 5 June I decided to give it a go at this late hour. Original announcement: LituanicaSAT-1 FM Transponder Active until June 4 - amsat UK.

I did hear traffic but it was very hard to understand callsigns (so I couldn't respond to a callsign I just heard) and I got no response to calling CQ.

So not much luck in working this satellite, but at least I heard it this time.

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2014-06-04 (Actual grammar nazis.)
Google+Koos van den Hout : Not a fake:
And I am oh so tempted to start quoting lines from the Blues Brothers movie.
2014-06-03 (#)
Na wat hikken van de verbinding naar buiten was ik er een paar maanden terug niet blij mee dat intern dan ook de IPv6 routering stukging. Dat bleek te zijn omdat wide-dhcpv6-client bij het niet meer kunnen verkrijgen van adressen via prefix delegation deze ook terugtrekt van de gedelegeerde interfaces. Vervolgens vervallen de routes naar de subnetten thuis en kan ik met clients daar niet meer werken. Maar ik wil ook met IPv6 werken als de verbinding naar buiten weg is.

Ik had als oplossing bedacht om wel een prefix op te vragen maar niet meer de interfaces te laten configureren door wide-dhcpv6-client, maar ze gewoon statisch te configureren. Uit /etc/wide-dhcpv6/dhcp6c.conf:
interface ppp0
        send ia-pd 0;

        script "/etc/wide-dhcpv6/dhcp6c-script";
id-assoc pd {
#    prefix-interface eth0.1 {
#        sla-id 1;
#    };
#    prefix-interface eth0.3 {
#        sla-id 2;
#    };
Alleen komt er dan een hele obscure foutmelding uit wide-dhcpv6:
Jun  3 09:26:18 greenblatt dhcp6c[6474]: add_options: /etc/wide-dhcpv6/dhcp6c.conf:14 IA_PD (0) is not defined
Jun  3 09:26:18 greenblatt dhcp6c[6474]: main: failed to parse configuration file
En bij xs4all krijg ik geen IPv6 meer als ik het niet opvraag met prefix-delegation. Dat is heel lang goedgegaan, maar met de laatste updates aan hun access-routers ging het echt mis en zat ik ineens zonder IPv6. Configuratie aangepast, ik ken ze nu weer toe. Er blijkt echt iets te moeten gebeuren met de prefix delegatie om wide-dhcpv6-client er eentje op te laten vragen.

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2014-06-02 A cheap pre-amplifier for receiving amateur satellites
I was looking for options for a pre-amplifier to amplify the incoming antenna signal for receiving amateur satellites in the 70cm band (430-440 MHz). Commercially available units seem to be quite expensive like this one: DBA 270 Duo-Band-Preamp. 2m + 70cm - SSB for 298 euro.

A cheap option seemed to be Low Cost 440 MHz Receiver Preamplifier Kit - Ramsey Electronic Kits for US dollar 9.95. Oh, and US dollar 57 for shipping it to the Netherlands. I'll skip. Other options sofar seem to be quite expensive or require SMD soldering. I decided I have enough problem seeing normal soldering with a magnifying glass so I'll skip SMD soldering for now.

A cheap but not ideal trick is (ab)using a cable TV amplifier: those include the 70cm band because they include everything from around 88 MHz to 1000 MHz. I found this suggested at KickSat Ground Station. So I walked into the local electronics store and found a cheap cable TV amplifier with a special sticker "does not support digital interactive TV" which means it doesn't support the returnchannel. Good, just a simple amplifier. The specific impendance in cable TV networks is 75 Ohm and I want 50 Ohm so that will probably have to be fixed too. It came with a small power supply which will be replaced with a battery like in the kicksat page.

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2014-06-02 (I helped train their algorithm to guess which English I speak. It guessed that I ...)
Google+Koos van den Hout : I helped train their algorithm to guess which English I speak. It guessed that I speak US Black Vernacular / Ebonics & that my native language is English.

My native language is Dutch, I never lived in an English speaking country. Work (at a university, in IT security) just means quite a part of this job is done in English.

IPv6 check

Running test...
, reachable as PGP encrypted e-mail preferred. PGP key 5BA9 368B E6F3 34E4 local copy PGP key 5BA9 368B E6F3 34E4 via keyservers

Meningen zijn die van mezelf, wat ik schrijf is beschermd door auteursrecht. Sommige publicaties bevatten een expliciete vermelding dat ze ongevraagd gedeeld mogen worden.
My opinions are my own, what I write is protected by copyrights. Some publications contain an explicit license statement which allows sharing without asking permission.
Other webprojects: Camp Wireless, wireless Internet access at campsites, The Virtual Bookcase, book reviews
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