Archive for the ‘Multimedia’ Category

Avoiding the Copyright Alert System

Buy VPNThe “Copyright Alert System,” aka “six strikes,” is here. There is no changing that fact. The cable companies are watching everything you download and every site you browse. Our privacy on the internet is gone. The internet providers are watching torrent sites and bittorrent swarms. Trying to catch any illegal downloaders of mp3, music, movies or anything else they decide is wrong.  They are not just watching peer to peer programs, they are watching everything.

We need a way to protect ourselves on the internet. I have found a great service that takes care of everything. It is called Private Internet Access. This company supplies you with an anonymous VPN tunnel to protect your privacy. Private Internet Access does not keep VPN logs, so even if your internet provider requests customer information there is nothing for them to provide.
They provide:

  • IP CLOAKING
  • ENCRYPTION
  • FIREWALL
  • IDENTITY PROTECTION
  • UNCENSORED ACCESS

You get all of this for $39.95 for the Whole Year!

Not only that, but they have servers around the world. So if you need to download anything you can route your connections though countries that have more relaxed copyright laws. You can also watch the BBC, or if your outside the united states, you can watch your favorite team at home. They provide access through:

  • Gigabit
  • US – East
  • US – Midwest
  • US – West
  • US – Texas
  • US – Denver
  • US – California
  • US – Seattle
  • US – Florida
  • Canada
  • Canada (Toronto)
  • UK (London)
  • UK (Southampton)
  • Switzerland
  • Netherlands
  • Sweden
  • France
  • Germany
  • Romania

You can set up the VPN access on just about anything and they have great how tos on their site. Supported platforms include:

  • Windows 7
  • Windows Vista
  • Windows XP/2k3
  • Windows NT/2k
  • Mac OS X 10.8
  • Mac OS X 10.7
  • Mac OS X 10.6
  • Mac OS X 10.5
  • Mac OS X 10.4
  • UNIX/Linux
  • iPad PPTP
  • iPad IPSEC/L2TP
  • iPhone/iTouch PPTP
  • iPhone/iTouch IPSEC/L2TP
  • Android PPTP (2.3.4)
  • Android IPSEC/L2TP
  • Android OpenVPN (root)
  • DD-WRT PPTP
  • DD-WRT OpenVPN
  • Tomato OpenVPN
  • PfSense OpenVPN

This can also protect you when doing your banking or private business while on un-trusted networks. Do not trust your internet providers to protect you, this is something you must do for yourself.

The iPhone 5 has Arrived: Is It Worth It To Shift from 4S?

By Henry Conrad
So the iPhone 5 has made its touchdown. Avid fans of the Apple smartphone will be lining up to get a crack at this latest version. But for the current owners of the last iPhone upgrade in the 4S, is it worth it to shift to the iPhone 5?

The 4S felt like it just gave incremental changes and solved a few concerns that were encountered from the iPhone 4, which is why it is understandable that people are expectant of major upgrades to the iPhone 5.

So let us take a look at what changes we can expect from the iPhone’s latest variation:


Appearance
So yeah this new iPhone definitely looks different. It looks bigger and smaller at the same time. It looks bigger because it is now slightly taller than any previous models and features a 4-inch screen. But it also looks smaller because this is probably the thinnest smartphone right now at just 7.6mm thick.
So it is thinner and taller, but what you will love the most is its aluminum finish that gives it a more sophisticated look compared to the glass finish of past iPhones.
In terms of the screen, it is definitely an upgrade at 1136 x 640resolution with a pixel density of 326ppi.

Camera
Apple also gave the camera a slight upgrade as it bumped up the capabilities of the rear camera, and made it smaller but enhanced by the new chip that will be discussed later. The front facing camera was also bumped to 720p. Overall, the camera is better but the changes are not exactly earth-shattering.

Performance
This is where you ask if the change is really worth it. The iPhone 5 boasts of their new A6 chip, which is significantly smaller than the A5 but packs more CPU and GPU for more power on your phone. And the effect is pretty obvious once you use the new iPhone 5.
The constant criticism about the iPhone 4, and to some extent the 4S, is that it feels like there is always a moment when it is lagging even with the simplest of tasks. That is not a problem with the new iPhone 5. Despite the lag, using the iPhone 4 and 4s has always been smooth. But with the iPhone 5, you have the smoothness with an added snap. It reacts faster, and much smoother compared to its previous incarnations.
The new iOS6 also integrates with social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter better compared to the iOS5. Aside from that, the new OS has some nifty improvements especially on Maps, now that they ended their use of Google Maps and are now in partnership with Tom Tom. The 3D renders of its Map are a sight to behold.
Siri also got a much needed bit of an upgrade in the new iOS6. The personal assistant feature can now pick up voice commands better even with background noises. But that can also be because of the new mic of the phone. I’ve used it to make a call using the downloaded RingCentral app and the call quality was ridiculously clear.

Battery life
Have not fully tested its battery life but if what Apple say is true, then it can be the factor that sways customers to buy it instead of Samsung S3 or HTC One X. Their claim is that it can provide up to 8 hours 3G/LTE talk time or 10 hours of heavy browsing with WiFi.

Jury
So is it worth the trade from 4S? Probably not, but if you still using iPhone 4, then this phone might be for you. There are a lot of improvements but nothing that really stands out.


 BodyGuardz iPhone 5 - Order Now!

Bypass Firewalls with Android SSH Tunneling

Buy VPN
 

 

Why would you need a SSH Tunnel? You may want to get around a firewall or just encrypt your communications so prying eyes can not see what you are doing online.  On Linux/Unix system you can tunnel all of the traffic from your local box to a remote box that you have a shell account on. You can do the same with Android, and here is how:

First you will need to download some software from the Android Market. The following are FREE apps.

SSH Tunnel This will build the tunnel for your browser to use.

 

Firefox, a good browser with an easy tunneling add on.

 

Proxy Mobile Add On

 

 

Install all three.

Then you will need a SSH account somewhere. There are a lot of free SSH services out there. Send me an email at brad@crackednoodle.com if you want to hear my favorite, or run a google search and I am sure you will find a couple. Make sure they support SSH Tunneling. Sign up and get a user name and password. You can also use your own SSH server if you have one.

Now open up your  SSH Tunnel program on your Android device. and put in your credentials. Hostname, Username, Passowrd, click on the Use SOCKS Proxy click box and make  note  of the port. It was 1984 for me. Activate the SSH Tunnel by clicking on the Tunnel Switch Check box  (tunnel has to be activated every time you use it).

Next open the Firefox browser and go to the Add Ons in options. Open the options for Proxy Mobile. Set Use Proxy, set SOCKS proxy to 127.0.0.1 and SOCKS port to 1984 (or the port you used on SSH Tunnel).

Your Tunnel should now be working! Enjoy and use wisely.

How to Video:

Linux Online Backups

First I would like to start by saying all of the below systems offer data encryption and redundant servers to make sure your data is safe. They offer good pricing and have comparable up-time guarantees. I have tried these systems out either by using them in my businesses or by playing with them to find out which one is the right one for me.  All pricing was at the time of writing this article.


JungleDisk – I have used this service with a few of my customers. JungleDisk sets up easily on a Gnome or KDE desktop. I have run multiple installs on Cent OS systems. The system supports Amazon S3 and Rackspace Cloud Files storage. JungleDisk supports full encryption and will restart running processes if shutdown during backup or if a crash occurs. JungleDisk archives old and deleted files for later retrieval, and relies on multiple data centers to keep your files safe.  After the initial set up costs  which was around $50 the service is costing about $8.50 a month for one of my customers to back up about 50 gigs of data. Really a pretty good deal. Since I set the system up 2 years ago I have never had to make changes to the backup. I did have to restore about 100meg of files and that was very easy to do through the desktop application.

Memopal is based out of Rome, but they offer a cross platform software client for Windows, Mac, Linux and IPhone. You can install the software on more than one computer. They offer web and mobile access to your data and have a search feature so it is easy to find the file you are looking for. Selecting files for backup is easy and they even offer the option to backup your entire system. Personal plans start at $49.00 / year for 200GB. They do use a GUI and the Linux system is still listed as a Beta. The support is email based and they promise a response in 24 hours. Good value but a little vague in the Linux support.

 

DataStorageUnit is a relatively new player in the online storage world but they have a lot to offer the Linux world.  DataStorageUnit is an offsite backup service that allows for lots of flexibility.  It supports open protocols such as SFTPRSYNC, & SSHFS … so you can choose to use our included partner software, or any other apps that support those protocols.  Because you can use SSH and RSYNC DataStorageUnit is a very flexible solution. With a little script writing you can customize any backup scheme you wish. Great for command line only systems and headless servers.

One of the great things about DataStorageUnit is that you can back up as many machines as you need, as long as you stay within your data limits. The pricing is one of the best I have found, 100GB of storage for $50 a year. As far as support, I emailed a couple questions to the site and got a reply in minutes from the OWNER.

 

There are many more out there and I am sure I missed many of the online backup systems.

 

Let me know your favorite backup system for Linux.

 

Enjoy,

 

Blu Ray Ripping Linux How To

After doing so searching on Blu Ray ripping on Linux I found that no one seemed to have a good how to for Fedora. I also was not finding a method that worked consistently for free, or close to free. I found a great piece of software called MakeMKV. With MakeMKV and our other favortie tool Handbrake. I was able to get Blu Ray ripping working fast and easy.

MakeMKV is free to try for 30 days, after that the ask for 50$ for the purchase. I really think this is a good buy. It was one of the better programs I have found for Blu Ray ripping and they support Linux.

Here are the easy staps to get MakeMKV set up and running on Fedora 14, Fedora 15 and Fedora 16. First I would go through the Fedora 14 tips and tricks , Fedora 15 tips and tricks or  Fedora 16 tips and tricks and get all your codecs installed. Now follow this how to:

1. Install all the software that is required to build this program.

Become SuperUser

su

yum update

 

yum groupinstall "Development Tools"

 

yum install openssl-devel qt4-devel

2. Dowload the Makemkv programs which comes in 2 parts.

http://www.makemkv.com/download/makemkv_v1.7.2_bin.tar.gz

http://www.makemkv.com/download/makemkv_v1.7.2_oss.tar.gz

3. Unpack the downloads.

tar -zxvf makemkv_v1.7.0_bin.tar.gz

 

tar -zxvf makemkv_v1.7.0_oss.tar.gz

4. Build the software.

cd makemkv_v1.7.0_bin

make -f makefile.linux

 

 

su -c 'make -f makefile.linux install'

Repeat for the other directory.

cd makemkv_v1.7.0_oss

make -f makefile.linux

 

 

su -c 'make -f makefile.linux install'

5. Start the program by typing:

makemkv

There you go. MakeMKV should be up and running.

Tip: Only rip the  main movie it is usually  the largest file.

Then run that file through HandBrake.

The Social Network (Two-Disc Collector’s Edition) [Blu-ray]

I rip my Blu Rays with MakeMKV which generates a large .mkv file, 15gig to 30gig and takes about 40 mins  to 2 hours, depending on your computer, for a 2 hour movie. I then run that file through Handbrake to generate a .mp4 or m4v file. This takes about 1.5 hours to 4 hours depending on your computer. Try this, make about 5 mkv files. Then build a queue in Handbrake for all 5 of the files to convert. Start the queue right before you go to bed for the night. Saves a lot of time and electric is usually cheaper at night.

Blu Ray Ripping on Linux Part 1

Blu Ray Ripping on Linux Part 2

Enjoy,

Fedora 14 Tips and Tricks

After having some issues with Ubuntu 10.10 (blackscreen after an update) I decided to try Fedora 14. I was not real happy with Fedora 12 but thought I would give this disto another try. Like always Fedora leaves out some stuff your really need, like CODECS! The codec search tool that comes with Fedora has never worked, never. So here is how to load all the stuff you need or want in your Fedora 14 Distro. You need to get some other repositories that have the codecs and programs that Fedora does not supply. I like RPM Fusion and try to stay to the stable releases.


Add Repos:

rpm -Uvh http://download1.rpmfusion.org/free/fedora/rpmfusion-free-release-stable.noarch.rpm http://download1.rpmfusion.org/nonfree/fedora/rpmfusion-nonfree-release-stable.noarch.rpm

Installing Google Chrome Browser:

To add the google repository edit the file.

gedit /etc /yum.repos.d/google.repo (remove space after etc)

for 32 bit OS Version

[google]

name=Google - i386ff

baseurl=http://dl.google.com/linux/rpm/stable/i386

enabled=1

gpgcheck=1

 

gpgkey=https://dl-ssl.google.com/linux/linux_signing_key.pub

for 64-bit OS Version

[google64]

name=Google - x86_64

baseurl=http://dl.google.com/linux/rpm/stable/x86_64

enabled=1

gpgcheck=1

 

gpgkey=https://dl-ssl.google.com/linux/linux_signing_key.pub

Install Google Chrome Stable Version on Fedora 14

Just type this line on the root terminal

yum install google-chrome-stable

Pidgin Chat Client

yum install pidgin

Autoten installer for all kinds of stuff! Including your Codecs, thanks to dnmmouse.org for this nice little installer.

 

su -c 'yum -y --nogpgcheck install http://dnmouse.org/autoplus-1.2-4.noarch.rpm'


su -c 'rpm --import http://dnmouse.org/RPM-GPG-KEY-dnmouse'

This should have put an Autoten icon on your desktop use that to install all the other codecs you need!

Skype

You need to install some x86 libraries for skype to work on X64 (catch up skype!)

yum install libXScrnSaver.i?86 libX11.i?86 libv4l.i?86 alsa-plugins-pulseaudio.i?86 qt-x11.i?86

Of course install Yumex one of my favorites.

yum install yumex

Flash-plugin 64bit

Download it from here: http://labs.adobe.com/downloads/flashplayer10.html

Then select the 64 bit tar.

Unpack it then move the .so file to

/usr/lib64/mozilla/plugins/ or ~/.mozilla/plugins/

Restart your browser and you got it. This also causes the Chrome browser to flash to work.


Install Handbrake on Ubuntu 10.10

Handbrake is a great DVD ripper. Unfortunately the version on the Handbrake website is not working. Here is a ubuntu how to  for installing Handbrake on Ubuntu 10.10. This is almost the same how to for Ubuntu 10.04.

First we need to get DVD playback enabled:

sudo aptitude install ubuntu-restricted-extras
sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/install-css.sh

Next we need to add the PPA for the Handbrake Snapshots:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:stebbins/handbrake-snapshots

Your system will now fetch the PPA’s key. This enables your Ubuntu system to verify that the packages in the PPA have not been interfered with since they were built.

Then do and update of the Apt repos lists:

sudo apt-get update

Next you need to install the software. Use the Ubuntu Software Center to install Handbrake. Do a search for Handbrake and install the GTK GUI.

After it installs you should have Handbrake working in Ubuntu 10.10.



Now Start Ripping!

Free TV and Movies for the PS3

When searching for video content on the web, I noticed a lot of sites don’t work on the PS3. The media sites either need a proprietary player or a new version of Flash. After trying Hulu (needed newer flash), ABC and NBC (both needed a proprietary player), I was having trouble finding any good sites with current TV shows that could play on the PS3.  I decided to find some sites I could use. Here is a list of sites that work on the PS3.

Read the full article at PS3 Media Servers.

DVD Playback for Ubuntu 10.04

DVD playback in Ubuntu has always been a little bit of a pain. Here is how to do it in a couple of easy steps.

First you need to make sure you have all the goodies that were not included in Ubuntu 10.04.

# sudo aptitude install ubuntu-restricted-extras

This will give you the codecs you need and some other goodies. Next you have to manually set up the ability to read DVDs.

# sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/install-css.sh

Now just pop in your DVD and you should be all set.

I am also working on my Things Ubuntu 10.04 Forgot Post. Look for it soon.

Enjoy

Things Ubuntu forgot

I have had to install Ubuntu on a couple of machines and every time I do, I find somethings that I forgot to install. Of course, Ubuntu doesn’t come with all the codecs you need or DVD playback so I have written a little script that installs everything I need.  I have found most of the info all over the web and just put it into one script that I run post install. The script installs all the codecs I use and a lot of the programs I like.
#!/bin/sh
#ubuntu 9.10 add ons for playing anything

#add repos
sudo wget http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1402212/karmic.sources.list –output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/full.list

#add keys
sudo apt-key adv –recv-keys –keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com 2EBC26B60C5A2783 0DA7581859566E92 D739676F7613768D 43BB102C405A15CB 6AF0E1940624A220 2ED6BB6042C24D89 632D16BB0C713DA6 A6DCF7707EBC211F F9A2F76A9D1A0061 5A9BF3BB4E5E17B5 A040830F7FAC5991 FA3A1271 7FB8BEE0A1F196A8 0CC1223EE2314809 7889D725DA6DEEAA 28A8205077558DD0 2D79F61BE8D31A30 6E871C4A881574DE 66D5C734F6EFB904 DCF9F87B6DFBCBAE 2A8E3034D018A4CE F0876AC9 978228591BD3A65C 6298AD34413576CB FC6D7D9D009ED615 4FEC45DD06899068 2A423FD95416E75D

#update system before new addiotns are made
sudo apt-get -y update && sudo apt-get -y upgrade

#Installing vlc and mplayer (plays almost everything):
sudo apt-get -y install vlc mplayer

#Common codec packs
sudo apt-get -y install non-free-codecs libxine1-ffmpeg gxine mencoder mpeg2dec vorbis-tools id3v2 mpg321 mpg123 libflac++6 ffmpeg libmp4v2-0 totem-mozilla icedax tagtool easytag id3tool lame nautilus-script-audio-convert mozilla-helix-player helix-player libmad0 libjpeg-progs libmpcdec3 libquicktime1 flac faac faad sox ffmpeg2theora libmpeg2-4 uudeview flac libmpeg3-1 mpeg3-utils mpegdemux liba52-dev

#Gstreammer 0.10
sudo apt-get -y install gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg gstreamer0.10-fluendo-mp3 gstreamer0.10-gnonlin gstreamer0.10-pitfdll gstreamer0.10-sdl gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad-multiverse gstreamer0.10-schroedinger gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly-multiverse totem-gstreamer

#More programs
sudo apt-get -y install gstreamer-dbus-media-service gstreamer-tools ubuntu-restricted-extras

#Enable dvd support
sudo aptitude -y install libdvdcss2 && sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/./install-css.sh

#dvd ripping and encoding
sudo apt-get -y install kino handbrake audacity

#compiz config
sudo apt-get -y install compizconfig-settings-manager

#Flash
sudo apt-get -y install gsfonts gsfonts-x11 flashplugin-nonfree

Or you can download the script here PostInstallExtras.sh.
Another thing I like to do is make sure all my Ubuntu installations have the same packages from machine to machine.
First you need to generate a package list file on your current machine.
dpkg –get-selections > selections.txt
Then move that file to the target machine with a jump drive or ssh or ftp or what ever way you can. Then run these commands on the target machine.
dpkg –set-selections < selections.txt
apt-get update
apt-get upgrade
That is all you have to do and both machines have the exact same packages on them.
Fell free to modify theses scripts as you like. They are just here for you to use or modify.

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