News archive October 2015 - Koos van den Hout

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2015-10-30 Results of contests can take time 4 years ago
I got reminded I participated in some radio contests the past time, and it would be interesting to get an idea of the scores! Some contests take quite some time to publish...

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2015-10-27 Dear fail2ban, valid ssh logins with broken reverse DNS are 'normal' 4 years ago
I got locked out of my own server due to fail2ban triggering on:
sshd[12449]: Address aaa.bbb.ccc.ddd maps to something.example.com, but this does not map back to the address - POSSIBLE BREAK-IN ATTEMPT!
sshd[12723]: Address aaa.bbb.ccc.ddd maps to something.example.com, but this does not map back to the address - POSSIBLE BREAK-IN ATTEMPT!
sshd[12916]: Address aaa.bbb.ccc.ddd maps to something.example.com, but this does not map back to the address - POSSIBLE BREAK-IN ATTEMPT!
That was just a few scp actions in short succession, and no reason to lock me out!
Read the rest of Dear fail2ban, valid ssh logins with broken reverse DNS are 'normal'

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2015-10-26 Warning for the next reboot 4 years ago
Interesting information in the message of the day:
*** /dev/sda1 will be checked for errors at next reboot ***
*** /dev/mapper/vgsw-camera will be checked for errors at next reboot ***
*** /dev/mapper/vgsw-scratch will be checked for errors at next reboot ***
*** /dev/sdc1 will be checked for errors at next reboot ***
*** /dev/sdc2 will be checked for errors at next reboot ***
*** /dev/sda6 will be checked for errors at next reboot ***
Which translates to 'your next system startup will take up to an hour' for me.

This explains why logging in sometimes takes a while: this check probably wakes the disks from sleep some of the time.

I'll go do some of those filesystem checks by hand: I don't want to be offline for up to an hour when I reboot.

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2015-10-25 Ik doe de cursus voor het examen zendamateur F 4 years ago
Ik heb het cursusboek voor het F-examen al een tijd in huis maar nu ben ik sinds begin september ook bezig met de cursus bij de Veron afdeling Utrecht om zo per de eerstvolgende gelegenheid (Maart 2016) het F-examen te gaan doen.

Ik had het gevoel dat het allemaal 'redelijk' ging maar dat ik om het echt goed te snappen en de proefexamens makkelijk te halen wat meer structuur nodig had. De ervaring tot op heden is dat het binnen de cursus goed gaat, en dat het me gaat lukken.

De reden om nu toch actief achter het behalen van de full license aan te gaan is dat met de vakantie in Engeland ik niet mocht zenden (maar wel leuk aprs heb geluisterd) en dat ik soms dingen op andere banden zou willen. En bij contesten of zeldzame nieuwe landen is wat meer vermogen soms ook handig!

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2015-10-16 (Episode 151 Astronaughty had a good item about Android apps for ham radio. I'd like to add a few comments...) 4 years ago
Google+Koos van den Hout : Episode 151 Astronaughty had a good item about Android apps for ham radio. I'd like to add a few comments about mentioned programs:

- NKCCluster is free but asks for in-app donations (via in-app purchase)
- You mentioned APRSDroid having the option to connect a bluetooth TNC but did not go into this option. This is the way cool option with APRSdroid: connect a mobilinkd tnc to your handheld radio, connect it with bluetooth to your android device and APRSdroid will use it to transmit APRS reports and will display all the received APRS information including the maximum information that can be decoded from the packets. No internet connection needed in this case, just a handheld radio tuned to the local APRS frequency.
I tried this myself and I became a huge fan of the mobilinkd!
2015-10-15 (Great promotional video by the RSGB about amateur radio, touching a lot of the aspects of the hobby...) 4 years ago
Google+Koos van den Hout : Great promotional video by the RSGB about amateur radio, touching a lot of the aspects of the hobby.
I recognized several people and some clips from the +TX Factor show.
2015-10-15 More choice in amateur satellites, Fox-1A available 4 years ago
Another long expected amateur satellite has been launched and is available to amateurs, the Amsat-NA Fox-1A satellite, which gained amsat identifier AO-85.

Since it was launched as part of a militairy mission it's a bit harder to find the right keplerian elements (the numbers describing the orbit). The official Norad catalog number is 40967, but the standard sources for keplerian elements won't have this listed. Other sources have keplerian elements, but use different temporary object numbers. Since gpredict links everything together using the object number, this can get a bit confusing. I found usable keplerian elements at http://mstl.atl.calpoly.edu/~ops/grace_tle/grace_jspoc.txt which has Fox-1A as object 90747 named GRACE_47. So I created a preliminary transponder file ~/.config/Gpredict/trsp/90747.trsp with:
[Fox-1A FM trsp 67 Hz PL]
UP_LOW=435170000
DOWN_LOW=145978000
Frequencies adjusted based on research by Jan PE0SAT and Tom Worthington NH6Y

Now to find time to actually hear this satellite and attempt to work it.

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2015-10-13 Dare to put random USB devices in your computer? 4 years ago
With the USB Killer 2.0 and the USB Rubber Ducky it's not a good idea to put any random USB device into your system.

The USB Killer is quite simple: it charges up via the USB power leads and when the voltage is high enough (220 V) it will drop that back into the computer via the USB data leads.

The USB Rubber Ducky looks like a simple USB thumbdrive but it will actually mimic a USB keyboard and do interesting things with a computer, up to Exporting the wifi setup including passwords.

Do you dare to put any random USB device into your computer? Something you found in the parking lot?

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2015-10-12 The GAP: clothingstore and megaspammer 4 years ago
Someone entered an e-mail address that ends up with me in the spamlist of The GAP. The GAP sends out one or two marketing spam mails per day so this gets irritating quite fast. No verification whether the e-mail address was the right one or interested in these messages.

It seems The GAP does this via exacttarget, where the Exacttarget anti-spam policy says:
You should only receive email from our system from some client of ours that you recognize signing up to receive email from. Our clients certify that all email addresses used in our system are opt-in names that have given permission to the client to send them email.
So I also notified exacttarget.

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2015-10-12 Spamcop gets misled by google redirects 4 years ago
For a while I've been seeing output like this from the spamcop parser:
Resolving link obfuscation
https://www.google.com/url?q=http://strong.kindatodad.com&sa=D&usg=AFQjCNGsbJ19ztGW0DPjE3HCshzN0jWOdg
Removing google re-director: http://strong.kindatodad.com&sa=D&usg=AFQjCNGsbJ19ztGW0DPjE3HCshzN0jWOdg
chopping username "strong.kindatodad.com&sa=D&" from URL: http://usg=AFQjCNGsbJ19ztGW0DPjE3HCshzN0jWOdg
Tracking link: http://usg/=AFQjCNGsbJ19ztGW0DPjE3HCshzN0jWOdg
No recent reports, no history available
usg is not a hostname
usg is not a routeable IP address
Cannot resolve http://usg/=AFQjCNGsbJ19ztGW0DPjE3HCshzN0jWOdg
There is an obvious error in the parsing, and this has been going on for a while. With a browser I do get redirected to http://strong.kindatodad.com as expected. The domain registration kindatodad.com was updated today (always a bad sign) but it does not seem to be working at the moment.

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2015-10-05 A new FM amateur satellite in the sky 4 years ago
Recently nine (!!) small satellites were launched from China with one rocket. Six of these have each digital telemetry, CW beacon and a linear transponder in the amateur bands (I really should make some time to practise making contacts on SSB), two only have telemetry downlinks and one has a beacon, APRS transponder and an FM transponder, which should be easy to work.

The one with the FM transponder is LilacSat-2 (or CAS-3H, 2015-049K). I created a preliminary transponder file 40908.trsp for gpredict with:
[FM V/U]
UP_LOW=145350000
DOWN_LOW=437225000
MODE=FM
At this time untested.

The satellite has a schedule for operating the FM transponder (which probably has to do with power budget and other experiments on board):
LilacSat-2 is scheduled to switch on the FM transponder for 24 hours at about 2200 UT each Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Now to find time to try this satellite transponder at the available times.

Links for more information:

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2015-10-04 I participated in the Russian WW digital contest.. and it was bad 4 years ago
For a few hours I participated in the Russian world wide digi contest and it was near-impossible to get through to others, unlike the previous CQ worldwide RTTY contest. I only tried PSK63 mode. I did have a look at my contest macros and I will reshuffle them and improve them. I did notice the FLDIGI Contest - How To handles 'Search & Pounce' mode as something that 'also happens', but the 'Run' mode is thought out better. In 'Search & Pounce' mode you search other calling stations and try to answer them, in 'Run' mode you do the calling.

With my modest station I'm almost all the time in 'Search & Pounce' mode so I need to optimize my macros for that mode first.

Results were awful: I made a total of 17 contacts in about 1.5 hours of trying. I'll enter it as a checklog: verifying the contacts others made with me but not entering the scoreboard. It seemed almost nobody was hearing me, especially not in Russia, where the points can be scored.

Preliminary score:
Total number of QSO in your log is 17, Including 0 QSO with errors, Valid QSO - 17
Band  QSOs Dupes Points Mults
160      0     0      0     0
80       0     0      0     0
40       0     0      0     0
20      17     0     51    12
15       0     0      0     0
10       0     0      0     0
======================================
Total   17     0     51    12
Claimed score is 612 points
Read the rest of I participated in the Russian WW digital contest.. and it was bad

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2015-10-03 (It's a GIF file, honest! So, why is flashblock awake and why don't I see an animation?) 4 years ago
Google+Koos van den Hout : It's a GIF file, honest!
So, why is flashblock awake and why don't I see an animation?
2015-10-02 Rise of telnet attempts, maybe due to Linux.Wifatch? 4 years ago
I noticed a sharp rise in the firewall log entries for telnet attempts:
dmesg | grep -c 'DPT=23 '
176
From all over the world. I was wondering until I read Is there an Internet-of-Things vigilante out there? - Symantec official blog.

From the article:
During our analysis we began to unveil some of Wifatch’s secrets. Most of Wifatch’s code is written in the Perl programming language and it targets several architectures and ships its own static Perl interpreter for each of them. Once a device is infected with the Wifatch, it connects to a peer-to-peer network that is used to distribute threat updates.

The further we dug into Wifatch’s code the more we had the feeling that there was something unusual about this threat. For all intents and purposes it appeared like the author was trying to secure infected devices instead of using them for malicious activities.
Entering some of the 'attacking' IP addresses into shodan.io gives me a report they are running vulnerable routersoftware such as 'Allegro RomPager'.

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2015-10-01 More misdirected mail for wi-fi use 4 years ago
Right from the inbox, two mails with:
The e-mail address (koos .....nl) was recently registered for a WiFi Plus account at Tim Hortons. In order to complete the registration process and fully activate your account, please click the link below: Activate my account. Account verification is mandatory. Completing the registration will also remove the restriction on your account. If you are unable to click the above link, copy and paste the following link into your web browser address bar:
I'm not going to visit the verification link, that will probably get me some spam. As it is, this is reasonable: nothing unless I verify that the e-mail address is valid for this purpose.

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, reachable as koos+website@idefix.net. PGP encrypted e-mail preferred.

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