Tiernan's Comms Closet

Geek, Programmer, Photographer, network egineer…

A Month with an iPad Pro

About a month ago, I bought a 2022 iPad Pro 11 inch (4th gen) used for about 800 EUR (Which, given they are still for sale on Apple’s site for nearly double that (mine is a 256Gb model with Cellular) I think I got a good deal. I also got my hands on the Keyboard Folio, which is both a good thing, especially for writing stuff like this, but also a bit of a pain (the weight of it adds to the iPad and the fact that you need to remove it from the iPad to use it as a tablet is a pain). I also got my hands on a 2nd Gen Pencil, along with a USB C hub.

iPad Pro writing this post

The main reason I got this was for photo and video work. I shoot on both my iPhone 15 Pro Max and my Canon R5. When out shooting on the R5, I like to be able to plug in an SD or CF Express reader, download the images into Lightroom and be able to view them on the larger screen. Given the iPad is connected over 5G, it can always sync to the internet all the time. And, if I am near my car, which I usually am, I can use the WiFi in the car to upload stuff to the cloud too using the Mikrotik Router in the boot of the car… The one thing I have not fully tried out yet is video editing… I am still doing video editing on my Mac Book Pro at home. Maybe I will try it on the iPad soon. Speaking of videos, check out some of the videos I have on my YouTube channel. And, by the way, this was fully edited and written on the iPad Pro…

Some Random links for Prime Day 2023

Well, it’s Prime Day 2023, so I have been busy ordering some stuff, and, well, given everyone and their mother is doing posts on Prime Day stuff, I thought I would add my list of interesting things, including some of the things I bought. PS: all links are affiliate links and were found in the UK Store, but links are using GeniusLink to redirect you to the best store for you… Some items in the UK store might not be found in the US or other stores…

So, first, the things I bought:

Now, for things I don’t need (or can’t afford…) but caught my eye while browsing.

Of the stuff I have ordered so far, the Ryzen 5 machine should arrive tomorrow, so I hope to do some sort of unboxing on my YouTube channel. Maybe head over and subscribe while your waiting!

Day 61 of #100daysofhomelab – swapping disks in a Hetzner Dedicated Machine

It’s been a while… So, for Day 61 of , I thought I should write up how to swap a disk in a Hetzner Dedicated Machine.

I have a dedicated server I rent from Hetzner in Germany. It has an Xeon E5-1650 V2 processor (6 cores, 12 threads, 3.5Gz base, 3.9Gz turbo), 128Gb RAM, and a pretty impressive 15 6Tb HDD. All drives are hooked to a Mega RAID controller, but because I am running ProxMox, I left it in JBOD mode and set up the 15 drives in RAIDZ-2. All 15 drives are in a single pool (probably not ideal, but it works for me). Now and again, I get a message from ProxMox telling me about bad blocks… and every time it happens, I have to remember what to do to find the bad drive, report it to Hetzner, wait for them to replace the drive and then add it back to the pool… Today, it happened, so I thought I better document it, to help future me, and hopefully someone else out there…

First, we need to find the drive in question. Usually, I’m my alerts, I get the Serial number of the drive causing problems. So, I ran the following command:

megacli -PDList -aAll | egrep "Enclosure Device ID:|Slot Number:|Inquiry Data:|Error Count:|state"

This gives me a full list of drives along with the Slot Number (needed when sending to Hetzner) and the Serial Number. the data output starts with the “Enclosure Device ID:” so when you find the Serial number, look above it for the Slot Number… so, my issue is with the disk in Slot 10. I opened a support ticket with Hetzner requesting a replacement disk. It can take an hour or more for this, but sometimes faster. Depends on their load…

Once you get a confirmation that the disk is done, you now need to swap it into the zpool.

first, we must check if the new drive is set up correctly. Run the following:

megacli -PDList -a0 | grep Firmware

We are looking for “Firmware status: Online, Spun Up”. If we have anything marked as configured, we need to run the following:

megacli -CfgForeign -Scan -a0

This shows us any foreign configurations. If that’s more than 0, we run:

megacli -CfgForeign -Clear -a0

This clears out that configuration. Next, we need the Enclosure ID and Slot number for the new drive from:

megacli -PDList -aAll | egrep "Enclosure Device ID:|Slot Number:|Inquiry Data:|Error Count:|state"

cause we need to run:

megacli -PDMakeGood -PhysDrv [<enclosure>:<slot>] -a0

Finally, run:

megacli -CfgEachDskRaid0 WB RA Direct CachedBadBBU -a0

Note: If that fails with a message about cache data, you may need to run:

megacli -DiscardPreservedCache -L"10" -a0

This will clear the cache and then you can run the CfgEachDskRaid0. This will mark all new disks as JBOD disks… used for ZFS. If you have something different, check the docs from Hetzner below.

Next, we need to swap disks in ZFS. Run

zpool status

to get the info about the missing disks. the missing disk will show as unavailable. Next, find the ID of the disk that was added.

cd /dev/disk/by-id/


find the new disk (usually wont have any partitions on it). Now, its a matter of running the following:

zpool replace rpool /dev/disk/by-id/scsi-3600605b008f498802aa37da51674ea7e-part3 /dev/disk/by-id/wwn-0x600605b008f498802b2a3a683752e088

swap the scsi-36xxx and wwn-0x6xxx parts for the ones you found and rpool with your ZFS pool name.

finally, run

zpool status

to see the status, run:

zpool status -v -1

shows you the status with more info and refreshes every second. ZFS is now running in the background resilvering the drives and swapping out the old ones. since the old one is missing, it will wait till the new drive is sorted then remove the old one. This can take some time, depending on your disks and data size.

Hopefully, this helps someone!

Some links for info:

LSI RAID Controller – Hetzner Docs

Day 60 of #100daysofhomelab

Day 60 of and I have been sick for most of the last 2 weeks, so that’s why I haven’t been posting much… Today is going to be links only too…

Day 59 of #100daysofhomelab – Proxmox Updates, LTT Hacked, New Framework Laptops

Day 59 of and Proxmox released 7.4 of their Virtual Environment. I have not upgraded any of my machines to it, just yet, but that’s the plan for the weekend. Other than that, some links:

Day 58 of #100daysofhomelab

Day 58 of and today is mostly a retrospective of what I did over the last few days, with some links thrown in for good measure…

Given I am going to keep GodBoxV3 running Windows Server 2022 for the foreseeable future, I installed Veeam Availability Suite (through their NFR program) and got it to backup up my Hyper-V VMs, along with my ESXi VMs to both local and Backblaze B2 storage. So far, so good.

Also, Ubiquiti released Unifi OS 3.0 for the UDM Pro, which I upgraded this morning. Links for that are below. Some nice bits in here, like:

  • Added Wireguard VPN Server support.
  • Added VPN Client Routing.
  • Added Ad-blocking feature.
  • Added support for OpenVPN tunnel in Traffic Routes.
  • Allow adding multiple VPN Clients.

the 2.5 release OS had the VPN Client option, but ALL traffic went over the VPN, whether you wanted it to or not. This release gives you the option to say that traffic from a given host, network or even traffic to a given IP or range, goes over the VPN link. The Ad Block feature is nice too, but I have not tried it yet (still using PiHole for the moment) and the Wireguard VPN option is going to be VERY handy. More testing coming soon…

Anyway, on to the links.

Day 57 of #100daysofhomelab

Day 57 of and its a link dump for today: