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Singapore ADSL Delight

Wednesday, 16 March 2005 | link | tag | / Computers / Networks
Telstra needs a thorough and robust slapping. I moved apartments in Singapore a couple of weeks ago and was unhappy with the Net2Room 'ADSL' service supplied, so I looked into the local ADSL providers. I decided to go with SingNet the IP arm of SingTel.

I walked into the SingTel store near my office building at 4pm on a Thursday afternoon last week and applied. Since I didn't have a phone line, I also applied for one of those, too.

Tuesday morning, 11am the line was installed, by 2pm I had working 3500 / 350 kbps ADSL. Most of that intervening time was me ducking out to purchase an ADSL modem - I wasn't expecting it to happen so soon.

Less than 3 working days, from application to working ADSL service. The equivalent from Telstra in Sydney, or any ISP so lumbered with Telstra's DSLAM provisioning headaches would have taken 3 weeks. Add to that the typical 10 to 15 day wait for a copper service and the total pushes 6 weeks.

You even get given the choice - pay the Telco for an ADSL modem, or roll your own, so to speak. Just TRY getting Telstra to unbundle the modem. Needless to say I was very impressed.

SATA Raid controllers

Wednesday, 9 March 2005 | link | tag | / Computers / Storage
I've been looking out for a decent review of SATA RAID controllers for a while, I'm thinking of building a media server. www.tweakers.net has an awesome review of 8 different controllers.

The Areca ARC-1120 8 port SATA II controller kicked the pants of the competition in almost every respect, most notably the 3Ware card I was previously considering.

iPod Ownership

Wednesday, 9 March 2005 | link | tag | / Computers / Apple
Now that I own an iPod I finally understand what the fuss is all about. I mean it just gives you unprecidented access to your music collection. I find myself listening to music I was only dimly aware that I owned, from CD's that must be buried somewhere dusty on the back of a bottom shelf behind a mountain of used computer parts and smelly dive gear.

iTunes sort of does that for you, but the 'aways have it with you'-ness of the iPod means that while you're waiting for a train, you can pop it out and explore. Man, to think I've listened to literally HOURS of completely irrelevant noise when I could be listening to music instead. (Some may argue that my music collection IS, in fact, irrelevant noise. Bite me).

Apache 2, Webmail

Wednesday, 11 August 2004 | link | tag | / Computers / Networks
Spent some time installing Apache 2.0.50-8 so that I could do the proxying for Outlook Web Access properly. It sort of worked with Apache 1.3.26 but you couldn't reply to an email or forward one without a weird access denied error.

Apache 2 allows "ProxyPreserveHost" option, which ensures that the website requested by the client is passed to the proxied machine - that way Outlook Web Access knows how to insert correct URL's into the returning data. Works ver nicely now.

I must say I'm very impressed with the modular way Apache 2's configuration works. Heaps neater than one monolithic file, especially if you have multiple sites of configs.

SPAM Filtering

Friday, 6 August 2004 | link | tag | / Computers / Networks
Spent the last few days setting up SPAM filtering. I used to use SpamAssassin, but it was just getting so hopeless at detecting SPAM. I've given DSPAM a try, http://www.nuclearelephant.com/projects/dspam/ and so far it works remarkably well. Very easy to set up - and I even learned a thing or two about Exim MTA.