Rob Pickering

Leader, Mentor, Challenger, Educator, Network Engineer, System Administrator, Developer, Hacker, Writer, Diver, and Technology Explorer

Cupertino, CA 20 posts

Why I'm doubling down on Apple - Privacy

It's spring here in Silicon Valley and that means it's time for the Apple World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC). This year did not disappoint with Apple making not 1, not 2, but 6 major announcements: tvOS, now with Amazon Prime Video watchOS 4, Siri and Toy Story watch faces Mac macOS High Sierra (no it wasn't a joke) iMac speed bumps MacBook / MacBook Pro speed bumps New iMac Pro iPad Pro 10.5" (and updated 12") iOS 11 HomePod (Siri-powered Speaker Assistant) These are some great announcements from Apple, but what I'm most excited about are the announcements that were behind the announcements. Intelligent Tracking Prevention The Safari browser will now be the only browser on the market with built-in...

Triple Boot MacBook Pro (macOS, Windows 10, Linux)

I recently decided to run Kali Linux on my MacBook. I originally thought I'd just build it into a Virtual Machine (using Parallels), but was concerned that I might not have the control over the hardware that I'd need in order to make Kali effective as a learning environment. So, I set about working on a dual-boot scenario. Needless to say, I failed miserably when I opted to have Kali install Grub and it overwrote my primary Boot Manager on the Mac and rendered the system unbootable (and eventually unrecoverable). Thank goodness for good backups... WARNING: Do not proceed with any of these steps unless you have the ability to restore a bare-metal backup. Everything I'm doing has the potential...

Consuming Content is Hard

I recently listened to Triangulation episode #278 with Tim Wu, author of The Attention Merchants (which I'm currently reading). Tim, and Leo, both stated in the podcast that getting people to pay for content is hard, which is why advertising supported content is so prevalent. Here's some of the content I willingly pay to consume: Apple Music ($14.99 / month) - Ad Free* Apple Match ($29.99 / year) - Ad Free AT&T U-verse (just the television portion, $90/month) DirecTV Now ($35/month) Audible Membership ($16/month) - Ad Free* iTunes Movies (we own over 100 titles, including Top Gun) Washington Post New York Times MacLife Consumer Reports Popular Mechanics Simple Habit (Meditation) AllTrails (Hiking Trail Maps) Hulu...

Configuring Synology for Forward and Reverse Internal DNS Resolution

I'm a big fan of the Ubiquiti UniFi networking gear, I wrote about how I was able to use their gear to provide micro-segmentation of my IoT devices from the rest of my network. However, one area that Ubiquiti really falls down on is internal DNS resolution of DHCP hosts. This is a problem they've had with their UniFi Security Gateway (USG) for quite some time, as documented here. Basically, however your device identifies itself to the DHCP server on the USG is how it will be inserted into DNS. If there's a space, then there's a space (and resolution will fail). There is no where to configure a default domain name (search domain) and if you use a Fully...

Weekly Update 4

Back from my break over the holidays! Back to work, son is back to school. I didn't publish any articles over the break, but that doesn't mean I wasn't working on one! Back in January, 2010 (7 years ago now), I published an article on my frustration around Intuit's Quicken product, and specifically the lack of support for the Macintosh platform. The article got a lot of publicity and I ended up writing a series of articles on the state of Macintosh Financial Management software. The most recent article on the topic was published in February, 2011 and discussed my final decision: Quicken for Mac was dead and I moved to iBank (now called Banktivity). Well, it's now 6 years...