Cisco Meraki- How to Lose Friends and De-Influence People

Let me start by saying that I think Cisco are a great company and I have huge respect for them. They have some amazing products and services particularly if you can stand some of the eye watering prices. But they make some delicious gear! But this tale doesn’t start with them, it starts at MIT, where a couple of students founded a company called Meraki- whose speciality is cloud controlled networking. Having visibility to all of your networking devices on a ‘single pane of glass’ is a compelling story, and Meraki does it...

read more

Stalking With iPhones

  Last week I was asked to go onsite and help a lady do some general maintenance on her laptop, and of course a bit of help with iCloud- because for some reason the way iCloud works isn’t well understood by the general public. I’m not immune to this either- they asked some questions I couldn’t answer without more research! Anyway, part of the job was to download some photos off old iPhones, then wipe them and get them ready for sale. She produced 3 iPhones and they all had very dead batteries except for the current one...

read more

Options for Buying Office 2016

This is important because there might never be an Office 2018- Microsoft appear to be moving to a monthly release schedule without monolithic releases- this means that at some point they will probably stop upgrading Office 2016, but I am confident that they will keep it current for a considerable time because of past history and current actions. Microsoft are currently interacting very positively with the Mac Admin community and the relationship is working very well.   Part of an Office365 subscription ‘Office 365 Business’...

read more

Virtualising Your Physical Mac Assets- P2V

So I hope you haven’t bothered to read my 2000 word epic about this that I’ve been working on for weeks. It’s essentially a very long laundry list of things that don’t work. After getting VMWare involved I did think however that we might both figure it out, or at least get some pointers. This was until today, when they said ‘oh no, you can’t do that….’ To which I replied ‘yes you can, several people have done it. I just want you to tell me what the easiest or recommended way...

read more

Virtualising Servers on a Mac ESXi Host

I’m writing this one because I’ve faced quite a few gotchas, and I’m still not there yet. The basic theory is to take a whole bunch of servers that I currently run and make them into virtual machines that can be moved around and generally make more efficient use of the infrastructure we currently have. None of the current servers have a heavy workload so it makes sense to do this. Also it might be my last chance to do it in a sensible way with Macs- since Apple introduced the new Mac Mini with only a dual core i5, your...

read more

Netgear and VPN Passthrough

I’ve just spent a couple of weeks fighting with a very frustrating problem- setting up VPN passthrough on a Netgear DGND3700v2. This is a reasonably high end device (for Netgear) and actually contains the ability to terminate VPN endpoints. However the built in VPN server does not support the built in VPN software in the Mac OS, and you have to use something like VPN TrackerĀ (up to $20 Aus per month) or IPSecuritas (free, but difficult to configure and support). I decided that the best option here would be to port forward the...

read more