External Colours

I am pleased to say we have FINALLY put the external colours to bed – our selections are in!!!

Bricks have been a VERY painful process. We took ages to agree on a brick and when we submitted them 5 days before our appointment we where told it was a slurry brick. When discussing the brick with the brick company they said it is pretty much fine Rawson wave all responsibility if anything does happen and Michael really didn’t want to do it and I didn’t want to hear I told you so- so it was back to the drawing board. Out to the brick yards we went on Sunday and Michael stumbled across a brick that we hadnt considered before and thats the brick we have ended up going with!

So the brick is Boral Horizon in Emerald;

boral-horizon-hinterlands-emerald

Our brick choice was even more limited as we needed an EXP brick due to the soil at Gregory Hills. The above mentioned brick is an upgrade of $999 but whatever – a decision has been made.

Also after much discussion we have gone with a colourbond roof in woodland grey. This colour will also be the gutter, down pipes, meter box, water tank and some cladding.

woodland-grey-275x275

The fascia will be dune along with the laundry door, pergola at front, cladding and a couple of other things.

apo-grey
APO Grey – Windows colour.

Driveway is platinum.

Front door and Garage door will be wood colour – stained Merabu (Shown here)

Front style is this one with the horizontal glass.external_pivot_lumina_lum5s_ins

Now we just need to decide on where we are going to put the two niches we get and work out what fridge space we get and then we have 4-6 week weeks till we have to go in and do our internal colours/electrical and go and pick tiles.

The builder is costing the additions we have asked for as well as making alterations to windows/driveway/location of tank and then doing final plans for us to sign to be submitted to council.

Mikrotik – Total convert

As you will have seen in one of my previous posts (here), I have a Mikrotik RB450G which I purchased and have been playing around with.

I must say I am a complete convert, I really love the hardware. The amount of things it can do and how configurable it is really makes it a great bit of hardware.

It brings back the memories of when I would run a old PC as a linux router/internet gateway when I could run mrtg on it and constantly have a record of link utilisation etc. This is done on the Mikrotik too, and I love it.

I just purchased a TP-Link TD8817 in the last few days, to have this permanently hooked up to the Mikrotik RB450G and will run my ADSL via bridged modem. Mikrotik is handling everything. When I move and eventually get an FTTH service, I will just need to reconfigure the Mikrotik accordingly.

I still have lots to understand about RouterOS, but so far its working very nicely and doing everything I need of it.

My plan is to play around with queues and what not further, so I can put the kids devices into a group that gets a percentage of bandwidth available, however for now I am marking packets and assigning them priorities to keep the link quick for stuff that needs it. Like web browsing and email.

Minecraft – New fan

My kids are both very interested in Minecraft and basically would love watching it played by others.

Recently purchased it for my oldest child, and while he hasn’t played much yet, I have played it a little and surprised I actual like it.

I think you could say I am a new fan to Minecraft, and will probably play a little myself. I like the challenge in survival mode. It’s pretty difficult at times when you have no real resources.

A friend has recommended I setup a server and that way my son and I can both play on that server and be on the same map etc. Will certainly give this a go in coming weeks.

New antenna installed at Caravan

The in laws bought a caravan some months ago that is permanently on site. However the antenna was completely broken. Basically no TV reception at all. Not surprised as the antenna was missing items that are important to how it works.

Arranged to purchase a replacement from Jaycar and when I went down to visit we installed the new antenna. It was easy enough to install and after it was done, we can now tune in the TV channels with no problem. However, we installed it on the last day of the visit. So they won’t get to use it until next break at the Caravan.

Oh well now you can watch the news and/or other items as needed while at the Caravan, vs previously being unable to get any TV at all.

Exetel Evening Network Congestion

For months now I have been seeing major Network Congestion on the Exetel ADSL2+ Broadband service. I’ve reported this a number of times and it is brushed off indicating that the problem is a service based one.

Well unfortunately that’s not the case, as come business hours the same network transfers slow in the evenings are fast again, which basically tells us that the Exetel Network / Up stream provider is clearly hammered/congested/shaped.

Below is some test downloads, which show the date/time they started and ended, along with the size of the files, URL used and average through put.

pi@bravo ~ $ date
Wednesday 15 April  21:05:46 AEST 2015
pi@bravo ~ $ wget http://mirror.internode.on.net/pub/test/100meg.test
--2015-04-15 21:06:07--  http://mirror.internode.on.net/pub/test/100meg.test
Resolving mirror.internode.on.net (mirror.internode.on.net)... 150.101.135.3
Connecting to mirror.internode.on.net (mirror.internode.on.net)|150.101.135.3|:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 100000000 (95M) [application/octet-stream]
Saving to: `100meg.test'

100%[======================================>] 100,000,000 94.3K/s   in 17m 47s

2015-04-15 21:23:53 (91.6 KB/s) - `100meg.test' saved [100000000/100000000]

pi@bravo ~ $ date
Wednesday 15 April  21:23:56 AEST 2015
pi@bravo ~ $ wget http://download.gimp.org/pub/gimp/v2.8/windows/gimp-2.8.14-setup-1.exe
--2015-04-15 21:23:57--  http://download.gimp.org/pub/gimp/v2.8/windows/gimp-2.8.14-setup-1.exe
Resolving download.gimp.org (download.gimp.org)... 209.132.180.179
Connecting to download.gimp.org (download.gimp.org)|209.132.180.179|:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 91931728 (88M) [application/octet-stream]
Saving to: `gimp-2.8.14-setup-1.exe'

100%[======================================>] 91,931,728  34.4K/s   in 43m 3s

2015-04-15 22:07:02 (34.8 KB/s) - `gimp-2.8.14-setup-1.exe' saved [91931728/91931728]

Now below is my PPPoE out interface traffic graphs covering today, and the time the above clearly present, as you can see the link is capable of loads more through put, but during the evening its not remotely possible.

Come tomorrow after 9am I will perform the same downloads and post up the results below this line and you can see that what I am saying, and been seeing is evident in the material presented.

MikroTik – RB450G

I recently came across an MikroTik RouterBoard 2011 appliance, and it’s not something I haven’t heard of, as I have a friend who loves the gear.

Unfortunately I never got to play much with it, as no one knows the Administrator details and/or associated password. So this made doing some troubleshooting in the environment a bit difficult.

Decided it might be a good reason/idea to purchase a RouterBoard, since I will probably need to reset the unit for a friend, and before doing this, would like a good understanding of the device and configuration. I was about to order a new RouterBoard RB450G when I noticed someone had a unit for sale on ebay. So I bought that one at a good discount over the new one.

Looking forward to it arriving so I can make good on my research and start the configuration.

I am also looking at purchasing some of the wireless gear from MikroTik as also have a need to replace some 2.4Ghz Wireless Access points for a hotel, so will be purchasing an MikroTik Groove and testing out HotSpot capabilities of the RouterBoard etc.