Pairing an Apple Wireless Keyboard in Ubuntu 12.04

I was recently given a 3-battery (second-generation) Apple Wireless keyboard, model A1255. I run Ubuntu 12.04 as my primary OS on my laptop, so I didn't anticipate any compatibility issues.  It didn't take me long to run into trouble. During the pairing process, Ubuntu gives a random PIN that must be typed into the keyboard, but it consistently rejected the number. The solution? Hold down the "command" button while typing the PIN number, release the command button, and then press enter. As a side note, put the keyboard in discoverable mode by powering it off, and then holding the power button until the light blinks steadily. I hope that saves someone some grief!


Filed under: Linux Hacks 4 Comments

Remote VNC Access

VNC Access to Raspberry Pi


There's nothing quite like being 500 miles from home and having the ability to control your home computer with your cell phone. In the past, I have used PocketCloud in conjunction with the built in RDP server to access my Windows 7 computer.  It was pretty handy for managing my media library from work or my laptop.

I ran into a problem, though, once I completely moved my home computers to Linux: the best RDP server solution for Linux (xRDP) just didn't cut it. It was nowhere near as seamless as the built in utilities for Windows, and I don't like fiddling past initial setup.

I decided my Raspberry Pi would make a great remote access point. No sensitive information, very low power draw for 24/7 uptime, and I can tuck it in next to my router so I never have to see it.

Join me after the break for a quick and easy tutorial for enabling remote access to your own Linux machine! We'll be using TightVNC Server for Linux, a Raspberry Pi running Raspbian, and your choice of a VNC client.


Hacking Gogo In-Flight Wi-Fi

Ok, its more of a bypass then a hack, but still fun. While waiting for takeoff I was thumbing through the add-filled magazine in the seat pocket in front of me, when lo and behold I see a full page add for Blackberry 10's new Z10 phone, with the caption "free gogo internet for blackberry users this month". Well, as any self-respecting hacker would, I decided that free wifi was mine. Assuming they were using user-agent string to filter out Blackberry vs non-blackberry clients, I decided to do some experimenting and found that:

Mozilla/5.0 (BB10; Z10) AppleWebKit/534.55.3 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1.3 Mobile Safari/531.21.10

worked! I basically modified the safari user-agent string with the BB10; Z10 addition, and there was free internets to be had.

Nuts and bolts:

thankfully I already had my user-agent switching extension loaded in chrome, so I simply opened it up and duplicated the safari user-agent string then refreshed the page and the gogo portal asked me if I'd like free wifi. Thanks, gogo!


Filed under: Uncategorized 2 Comments