I have had a Pi-hole set up near my cable modem for at least 1-2 years now? Time moves differently for me for the last 18 months. Regardless, my Pi-hole device just sits there, filtering out ads from the network. I highly recommend setting up a Pi-hole for your home. It’s cheap, easy, effective and efficient!
What is it? A cheap Raspberry Pi computer with an SD card. Gets power from a phone charger and connects with a simple Ethernet cable. Runs passively without any fans at about 37 degrees C.
How do you use it? You can set it up as a Wifi source, or you can add the IP address in your wifi settings for DNS server. Use the same IP address in your web browser to see a web interface. From there you can modify the whitelist/blacklist and see in real time how many ads are being rejected.
Essentially, what is involved? You flash a linux OS for Raspberry Pi onto your SD card using something like the Balena Etcher. I prefer “dietpi”, which is a low resource Debian distro. https://dietpi.com/ A simple 8GB or higher card will suffice. Then you install Pi-hole on it.
How do you maintain it? Every now and then, it’s good to log into it with SSH and run a “sudo apt update/upgrade” (if you choose a Debian distro). That’s it.
I have over 4 million domains on my blocklist and it makes a HUGE difference when I load websites without Pi-hole DNS configured in my wifi settings.
Bonus: You can SSH into it and install lynx, mc and any other useful linux terminal programs and have fun with it. As a double-bonus, you could even host web services like subsonic or ftp using it!
Brave is a great privacy-focused browser with built-in (optional) crypto functionality. It blocks trackers and ads without an extension and it’s the only browser I know of that blocks Youtube ads. Very useful!
There’s only an X86 version as of now, so it will not work with Raspberry Pi yet. I am running it on my work iphone and my de-googled android.
You can obviously tailor this list to your needs, but with this post you can install at once these programs in a Debian-based distribution (x86 or Raspberry Pi!): FTP, audio editor/streamer/player/tagger, office suite, radio streamer, remote desktop client, video editor, web browser, social media, disc utility, bit torrent client, email client, virtual machine, photo editor, CAD, CD burner, comic/ebook reader
At the end of the page is an explanation of which programs do what. Note: Every program on this list works on almost any Debian-based Raspberry Pi distribution, including Kali, Ubuntu Mate, Ubuntu Desktop, Raspberry PI OS
Tip for games and tweaks:
There’s a CLI program called pi-kiss that can install multiple games, emulators, system configurations, tweaks, tools, scripts, etc.
curl -sSL https://git.io/JfAPE | bash
Launch the program:
The Raspberry Pi Image program that comes with Raspberry Pi OS allows you to install an OS (similar to Etcher but with Pi images incorporated into it) to SD card, SSD, etc. Has lots of stock images, including Retropie, several Ubuntu variants, Raspberry Pi OS and more. You can also flash a custom image and wipe drives.
So far, Protonmail has evaded us with eMail client support.
Now the option exists via the Protonmail Bridge, which is available for Mac OSX, Windows 10 and GNU/Linux.
Here’s how I set it up in Ubuntu:
From the protonmail.com/bridge/install page, click on the GNU/Linux to download the .deb file. Double-click on it and launch the software manger. Install.
Unfortunately, right now the only email client that works with this Protonmail Bridge is Thunderbird, which is a Mozilla product. I had previously deleted this app out of protest of Mozilla’s anti-speech behavior but since it’s free and open source, and the only option for now, I will have to live with it. If you do not have this program, in a terminal, type:
This is a project that I definitely WILL do early next year:
I thought the whole setup was great except for one annoying thing: I don’t like cables coming out the sides of anything. I know this is standard procedure – even a macbook pro costing thousands of dollars does this. Would have been nice to have the power on the back. But this is a clean setup, looks great and isn’t too expensive, relatively speaking.
When I got to the end and saw what the function keys did I almost spit my coffee.
The mainboard/CPU mini-itx combo was really interesting. I didn’t know those existed, especially at that low price. I tried to find the board and they are out of stock everywhere but even better – the highest end version of the board is available for only $120:
Now that ARM processors are coming to the market for desktop computing, I wonder what kind of mini-computing setups we will see in the near future. I can picture something that looks like a 5″x5″x1″ shape that people shove behind a monitor that has Windows 10 and an SSD drive for under $200. We’ll see…
For those having issues updating the audio, the Pi Foundation created this guide:
To swap over the volume and input selector on the taskbar from ALSA to PulseAudio, after your Raspberry Pi has restarted, right-click a blank area on the taskbar and choose Add / Remove Panel Items. Find the plugin labelled Volume Control (ALSA/BT) in the list, select it and click Remove; then click the Add button, find the plugin labelled Volume Control (PulseAudio) and click Add. Alternatively, just open the Appearance Settings application from the Preferences section of the Main Menu, go to the Defaults tab and press one of the Set Defaults buttons.
Some people have reported that some applications are ignoring the effect of the PulseAudio output switcher. This is probably caused by an old ALSA configuration file still being on the system. Once you have updated, execute the following in a terminal window, which should fix this:
To remove the old Audio Preferences application, which will not work with PulseAudio, do:
First, when dealing with the spaces in a file name while using the terminal, you can use a back-slash before the space.
File name with spaces.txt
For the terminal:
File name with spaces.txt
Sometimes we run across a downloaded file online that was created by utilizing the winrar multiple-file feature to make a huge file downloadable. A good example would be an ISO image that is more than 1GB in size. The rar program can break up the file into smaller pieces. Example:
and so on
To unrar multiple files into one, first install the unrar program in linux. In this case, I’m assuming you are using Ubuntu or any Debian-based distribution (like Raspbian):