Network – Part 3

Given we received confirmation on the closing date for the house, I used that as an excuse and purchased the Ubiquiti network equipment. Partly to familiarize myself with getting it setup and running – configuring the gateway to work with Google or AT&T fiber connects directly will be a challenge.

Ideally, I’d want to not have the ISP’s equipment involved. To do that, the Ubiquiti USG will need to be provisioned with a custom profile – the details of which will be the difficult thing to nail down. I’ve had little luck on finding details for an AT&T connection, which will be the likely provider since Google Fiber isn’t available yet. (Why you do this to me, Google?!)

The fallback option is to have the ISP equipment serve as the “dumb” gateway, of which the wifi capability will be disabled, and only one of the routing ports used as a pass-through to the Ubiquiti USG. This is how I’ve currently set it up in the apartment, and it works. I just like the idea of eliminating that one extra hop.

The setup for the equipment went pretty smoothly. I opted for the Generation 2 Cloud Key – still in a limited access program. It’s a nice little device.

The Deep Packet Inspection feature in the Ubiquiti interface is slick.  Here’s a high-level breakdown, of which you can drill into for details:

Screen Shot 2018-09-19 at 10.07.25 AM

The stats are over a period of Saturday through Wednesday. Yeah, you can be sure that I am against data caps on ISP plans. (Fortunately, the highest tier fiber plan with AT&T has no caps.)

Drilling into the above graph shows a more detailed breakdown:

Screen Shot 2018-09-19 at 10.10.11 AM

I’ll post more in an upcoming post.

Home Automation (cont.)

This week was the selection of window coverings. (As a side note – if you’ve never been through this process – prepare yourself. The selection of designs, colors, etc. is the easy part. The tough pill to swallow is the cost.)

It seems that one of the holy grails in the world of home automation is the window covering. There’s a myriad of products you can DIY – all of which perpetuate the impression that home automation is the realm of the tech nerd who likes to hack. Nothing in the DIY world is clean, minimal, and easy. You are looking at “solutions” that will essentially look like a Rube Goldberg set of gateways, radios, wires and circuit boards – all strung together to… open or close your shades.

On the other end of the spectrum, all of the solutions that are turn-key are expensive, in addition to an already pricey financial commitment.

We chose the latter – I’m at a point where I don’t want to fuss with rolling a DIY solution. Perhaps it’s the Apply fan in me, but I want a solution that looks good and just works. So we went with the Somfy motors on the shades in the Living Room, with the thought that I will have the scenes setup to be able to press a button or ask Alexa, “Turn on Movie Mode” – and the shades will drop, the lights will dim, and the TV and surround system will turn on and be ready to go.

At least that’s the goal. I’ll post again once we’re settled in and I’ve set things up.

Updates

House

We’re in the home stretch, so to speak. That stage in home construction where you wonder, “What else is there left to do?” – but there’s still two months left until closing. I’ve been through this before, but it’s still a grind.  I’ve exhausted all my “pass the time” techniques – window shopping and planning on furniture, planning the network/home automation, etc. All the lists are made and waiting on closing. Dog Days of Summer, indeed.

Moving

In preparation for the move, I’ve been trying to find the cheapest yet most efficient way to move the wine collection. Yesterday I discovered BungoBox – and I think that will work out perfectly. Lay a towel in each crate and stack the wine. I’ll be handling the moving of the wine myself. For everything else we’re hiring movers.

With travel, etc., July was a big month. We’re happy to lay low for August.

Some Wine News…

This is a first for me, so I’ve been sitting on the news for a day to ruminate on how to approach it.

Ehler’s Estate – the winery that made my epiphany wine – just announced they have a new winemaker. Such things happen, but it was a surprise nonetheless, as the previous winemaker Kevin Morrisey was very much the heart of the operation. No mention of him or why he left was given in the email.

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