Experience with Thunderbolt 3 USBC Docking Stations for macOS

Current Setup

I had a request from a client to purchase dual monitors for their Macbook Pro Late 2013 (or Macbook11,1). I also wanted to sort out my own setup Macbook Pro 2016 (Macbook13,2). Currently I’m using the following, an Apple USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter and a generic ArkTek branded adapter. Both come with a USB-C Power passthrough, HDMI and a USB Port, I can power both monitors. I tried to daisy chain the adapters, power pass through works but the second display doesn’t. I don’t know if that’s even possible, perhaps if I need to use two Apple based adapters. Anyways, this is a great, but ultimately I’d like one cable to rule them all.

Using a Single Cable Docking Station, or we thought

Enter Wavlink, I saw their product simply by searching Amazon, they seemed to be well reviewed. It’s a pretty standard dock, as you can see below. Insert front and rear ports. Insert Wavlink Amazon The connection to the computer is via a USB-C port, however the box includes a two cables. One USB-C to USB-C and one USB-C to USB Type A. So you can pretty much use it on anything, however you need to make sure you can install the drivers.

Drivers? Why do I need Drivers?

So this is something I forgot completely when ordering. The Wavlink has a DisplayLink chipset inside, which is used to push the external monitors. So in-fact you’re not use your on-board graphics card to Although it doesn’t support charging, there is a model available. It’s just not listed on Amazon. Insert Wavlink charging from Website But there’s one big issue I have with both of the above docking stations. They use the DisplayLink chipset that powers the monitors plugged into the dock station. http://www.displaylink.com/integrated-chipsets/dl-1×5  

Adding OVH Monitoring IP’s to Windows 2012 Server Firewall

If you login to the OVH control panel and notice that the monitoring is showing Red instead of Green, this is due to their monitoring servers not being able to connect to your VPS. You simply need to add their IP’s for monitoring that they provide in the control panel to your Windows 2012 VPS firewall.

The following command will add a new rule called “OVH Monitoring” and allow the remote IP’s specified in the OVH Control Panel.

netsh advfirewall firewall add rule name="OVH Monitoring" dir=in action=allow remoteip="92.222.184.0/24,92.222.185.0/24,92.222.186.0/24,167.114.37.0/24,192.99.166.111/32"

 

OVH Public Cloud CentOS 7 Change Hostname

If you’ve tried to change the hostname on your OVH public cloud instance running CentOS 7, you may have had issues with it persisting after reboot.

Took me way to long to find this solution, but someone had already spent way too much time figuring it out.

This GitHub Gist explains it all https://gist.github.com/zmjwong/77ee37deb1749c2582eb

Basically you need to edit /etc/cloud/cloud.cfg and add “preserve_hostname: true” and then set your hostname using hostnamectl.

hostnamectl –transient set-hostname your.new.hostname
hostnamectl –static set-hostname your.new.hostname

Hope that helps and thank zmjwong!

CrashPlan Update 4.8 and Linux Headless Issues

An update to CrashPlan was rolled out at version 4.8 but no download files were available on their site for Windows. So if you’ve been trying to manage your Linux headless install and its failing, this might be why.

Here’s the release notes.

https://support.code42.com/Release_Notes/Code42_Platform/Code42_Public_Cloud_Version_5.4

I don’t know how to kick off updates to CrashPlan on Windows manually, due to this update being pushed out by CrashPlan cloud.

Update 09/30/2016 @ 2:40PM

Was able to direct connect via port 4243 headless without issues.

Update 09/30/2016 @ 10:00AM

Tried accessing a Linux server running 4.8.0 with a Windows client running 4.8.0 with no luck. Essentially what you would call headless, this was over an SSH tunnel. Will try direct.

Update 09/30/2016 @ 9:15AM

Got a reply from CrashPlan on twitter.

 

RRDTool Error When Migrating Observium from 32bit to 64bit Server

We had a 32bit Ubuntu server that was getting pegged due to the lack of memory it was able to use when observium was kicking off it’s cron. So I decided to move Observium to a 64bit Ubuntu server.

Unfortunately when trying to run the poller, the following error appeared.

ERROR: This RRD was created on another architecture

The solution was to go back to the old machine and dump the .rrd files to .xml using the rrdtool dump command. I found the solution on this article.

RRDtool: moving data between 32bit and 64bit architectures

However, since the files were located in folders, the code snippet provided wasn’t going to do much. So I just did it with my good old friend xargs, cause I’m lame like that. So I ran the following on the 32bit Ubuntu server.

find . | grep "\.rrd" | sed 's/.rrd//g' | xargs --verbose -l -I ext rrdtool dump ext.rrd > ext.xml

Then I used rsync to copy all the data over to the new 64bit Ubuntu server. And then ran the following.

find . | grep "\.xml" | sed 's/.xml//g' | xargs --verbose -l -I ext rrdtool restore -f ext.xml ext.rrd

And Observium was back to normal! Yea!