not your average tech/non-tech blog


January 18, 2020 Technical Ben Zucker

…moved to a fresh VPS using Debian 10 as OS. Also IPv6 is now configured and available.

The mailserver stuff has been discarded. Too much effort to maintain for way too less throughput.

Message webmaster with his public key

June 4, 2019 Technical Ben Zucker
Photo by Richard Patterson CC BY 2.0

Photo by Richard Patterson CC BY 2.0


Sending a message to a webmaster with his public key… The idea behind this I actually got from an April fools released by c&t magazine. To cut a long story short they claimed that weak GDPR phrasing could be a reason that common letter post might need to be properly encrypted. They even provided a tool that extracts a websites public key use it to encrypt a provided message.

You can find the article (in German) here and the tool here.

Anyway. I was thinking how I could use this to send webmasters encrypted messages when they do not offer public keys emailing. And for some reason I do not was to ask them for keys. Maybe because I am incredibly clever and shy at the same time … never mind.

Some basics

To get a basic understanding how symmetric and asymmetric encryption - to say the relationship between public and private keys - works just watch this video. I started adding captions in English. Hopefully they will be released into the wild soon.

THX @dunkelmunkel Feel free to watch more of his videos 😉

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Probleme der Welt

March 20, 2019 Less technical Ben Zucker

Beitrag vom Juni 2007

Die Welt hat sich in den letzten Jahren schon stark verändert.
Vor 50 Jahren hat noch keiner an Terrorismus gedacht.
Vor 50 Jahren hat sich noch keiner so wirklich Gedanken über Supercomputersysteme gemacht.
Vor 50 Jahren hat sich keiner Gedanken über die Begrenztheit der weltweiten Ölvorräte gemacht.
Vor 50 Jahren hat sich niemand Gedanken über eine einheitliche Währung in Europa gemacht.

Es gibt nur eine Gemeinsamkeit: Es hat damals [scheinbar] alles funktioniert. Wenn du keine Probleme hast, mach dir welche….

Kommentare wie immer auf Twitter:

OrangePi SBC, Armbian, Pihole – quick and dirty

December 31, 2018 Technical Ben Zucker

Preamble (just skip it or click and read it, whatever)

A quick way to get yourself your LAN - well not ad-free but way ad-less.
This blog post will be some weird mix between this existing post [here]fixlater, updates for it and less verbiage.

Just a side note: Browser-based ad blocking is way more efficient rather than filtering using DNS filter lists. The reason for this is that those in-browsing scripts can adjust the appearance of a website directly while DNS based blocking simply does not allow content from specific domains to be loaded. Depending on the used browser the result may vary.
So why wasting time and money to set something up like this? Three reasons:

  • Especially on mobile devices you cannot simply install ad filtering software without enhanced access to your device (like “rooting”). Yes, there are apps like Block This! but maybe you need your VPN capabilities elsewhere
  • Other apps do not depend on browsers and sideload their ads other way, like the YouTube app on Android or any ad-funded app. If you cannot attack the enemy from within you have to surround him.
  • You have lots of devices and/or share your LAN/WiFi with others and want to serve your legacy of ad-free browsing with just being connected to the network

To be clear: This tutorial is way not bulletproof nor it is dedicated to total newbies and there will probably be tons of room for improvements. Some basic knowledge about Linux, especially Debian and networking is highly recommended. Though if you have questions do not hesitate to get in touch with me on Twitter I may do a kind of bulletproof tutorial from scratch if someone sponsors me a new OrangePi One SBC or any other more expensive board :-P. I decided to continue this in English as you may have noticed. Simply to get more reach.

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