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HOW TO: Install VPN server on Ubuntu when server is behind firewall

The whole point in this post is to run your own VPN service, and allow you to connect remote devices to your home network. To start off yo...

Jan 27, 2010

Open VPN

So I have been thinking a lot about VPN, I want to securely access my home network and VPN is the best way to do that.

As I have mentioned in previous post I use Tomato firmware on my router.  This free software allows me to adapt my "$60 router into a $600 router".  One of the variants out there for Tomato firmware allows me to run an Open VPN server from the router.

Using this Open VPN version of Tomato firmware I would have the ability to connect securely and become part of my network from anywhere in the world.  This got me thinking a little more...

I have a small portable XBMC solution, running on Ubuntu, if I had a VPN server up and running on my router I could configure the VPN client on Ubuntu to securely connect and be part of my network - allowing me to stream my content securely/encrypted anywhere in the world!

OpenVPN: Building and Integrating Virtual Private Networks: Learn how to build secure VPNs using this powerful Open Source application

Port Triggering

So I am on the search, I need to find a good application for port triggering.

I use uTorrent for getting various content/distributions, however I don't want traffic hitting my router when I am not using the application.  To get the best out of uTorrent you need to open a port on your router (port forward), but I don't want that port to be open when my application is not running, so what's the solution - port triggering.

There is an application out there that will work Port Trigger, but it is not supported in Windows 7.  The basic idea is that when Port Trigger sees the application of choice (uTorrent) running, it will intermittently send a request to a port.  This port request can then be set up at your router to open the configured port for your application connection.  Then, when the application is not running Port Trigger no longer 'pings' the trigger port, and the router will not open the port for the application.

If anyone has any suggestions for a Windows 7 supported application, please get in touch!

My router running Tomato firmware:

Jan 21, 2010

File Renaming Utilities

So I used to be a big fan of Lupas Rename 2000 (http://rename.lupasfreeware.org/), but I came across a problem that it could not solve.

I had several files that had characters at the start of the filename that I wanted to move to the end... after some searching I found a utility (free too) that could accomplish my requirement.  It's called Bulk Rename Utility (http://www.bulkrenameutility.co.uk).

This nifty little application allows me to, for example, do the following:

Original filename - "(1937) Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.avi"
New Filename - "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937).avi"

This is an example you understand...

The application can be downloaded as an installer, or as a stand alone application - for all you portable pundits out there.

Jan 12, 2010


So I signed up to be notified about the boxee beta, but I never received an email - today I went to check the site out for an update... the beta has been out since the 7th.  I have downloaded the deb on my Ubuntu machine and installed it:

sudo dpkg -i "downloaded file name without quotes"

Probably have dependency issues...

sudo apt-get -f install

Worth checking on a few updates...

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

Well, obviously I haven't had a chance to check it out, but we will see - I am very interested in the social aspects of the application, but I am loving XBMC with Rapier right now!

Check out boxee for yourself here!


So I played about with boxee for a short period, the beta is a much needed improvement, but I am not sure if I will switch to it from xbmc!