Monthly Archives: May 2012

Hai, can I hav sum intergnats plox?

Alternative post title: IPv6 all up in hurr

Some years ago, before the age of cheap international access on local ISPs arrived here, dual-homing (or n-homing, depending on how pimp you were) on your residential connection was quite the fashion among .za tech-heads. But not the fancy sort with BGP and decent best-route selection, just a really grubby sort: two accounts, one local (as in .za routing table) and one international. You can read up about the full setup over here on Stefano’s site.

Due to the nature of the split, there was some fun. Fun in the order which things might come up, fun in which session’s routing is ready first, fun in DNS server overwriting, that sort of thing. Of course, I mean fun tongue-in-cheek, since it was mostly an annoyance. Especially when ddclient picks the wrong PPP session (“the config says ppp1, why are you using ppp0?”), or doesn’t want to ignore its cachefile (forcing you to wrap it in another script and delete the cache yourself), or when your line flaps and all pppd instances go into this weird race condition where they suddenly all acquire the same IP, or ….. well, I guess you get the idea. It was painful.

Thankfully times have progressed, and now it’s possible to get IPv6. Hell, if you’re in the right place you can even get a static allocation of v6. Working for AS37105, this is of course one of the work perks, since we (the tech team on the v6 deployment) dogfood it ourselves to make sure we know that things are actually working. Things we usually note are the following:

  • explosions in’s v6 core – hey, it happens
  • client apps misbehaving – surprisingly, chrome on my desktop is one of these
  • “mixed” support – mikrotik, for instance. you can telnet/ssh it on v6, but not winbox to a v6 address (I don’t recall if I’ve tested whether it connects if a hostname resolves to v6 address..mental note)

Personally, the best part for me is not having to ever deal with broken dyndns anymore, or having to maintain lots of funky NATs, or having to tunnel home and route traffic via the tunnel. If I just quickly want to ssh to my desktop, it has a hostname in DNS and it works. If I quickly want to check up on my traffic stats or anything else, I browse to yariman (my gateway/home store). It’s great, and makes my life that much nicer.

All of this said, World IPv6 Day next week! Are you all ready for your few days of carnage as other shitty ISPs run around unprepared? Bring on the future!

One other thing, props to PH.Fat for another good track. The track alone is cool enough for me to share it, but then I saw that the album (available on their website) is creative commons, and that just wins a bit harder. Nicely done, guys :)

P.S. Fuck you, WordPress content editor, and your stupidity in paragraph designation flow after bulletpoints.

In-flight wireless-less

Ah, fantastic news strikes again. From this article:

“The system has been configured to allocate 128 IPs, with 124 IPs for passenger use. However, due to the number of passengers (115) utilising multiple devices (some as high as 2-3 devices) on the plane, more than 3 times the allowed connections were constantly requesting access to the internet,” explained WirelessG CEO Carel van der Merwe.

Now, some quick searching indicates that they’re using tech from Row 44 to do this thing. If it’s just satellite downlink, then I quite don’t get the R3.5 million (~$436k USD given a quick check of the current ZAR/USD) pricetag. If it’s the whole shebang, then I guess Row 44 is making some damn nice licensing fees out of airlines on DHCP leases.

Either way, I find it pretty damn hilarious that they didn’t plan for something like this on a flight for tech journos.

Routing for n00bs

In lieu of solar flares, and unicorns, I propose a new protocol name to use when dealing with people who don’t understand routing and friends, people to whom any level of tech explanation would be white noise:

MGP. Stands for Magic Gateway Protocol. It knows just what to do at all times.

Todo: write RFC.