It's been a while since i have had some time to update this. In that time I moved back to Richardson, joined the contact center TAC team, learned how to snowboard and hit the slopes in Park City, Utah, started playing with some more new tech, and started studying for my next level of certifications.
One of those cool new tech pieces I have gotten to play with is the Meraki Z1 Teleworker Gateway. I got one of these after a while because I got tired of my old Linksys E1200 and the constant reboots it required. That on top of the security vulnerabilities that popped up on the internet in February definitely sealed the deal.
The greatest feature about the Z1 is that the router is not your regular home router with a wizard to set you your wifi connection and you're done. It is a beefy router that gives you options to segregate traffic on multiple VLANs, use ACLs to filter traffic per device or group, and even the ability to VPN into your network if you're not at home. The kicker here is you don't need any special configuration skills or syntax since everything is based on a could based GUI so I can manage my home network from anywhere as long as I have internet.
Another pretty cool feature about this router is the traffic management and usage reports.You can see graphs of bandwidth usage from each device and the types of traffic. I can even see which clients have accessed my network and and which network they were on. The statistics I can generate and look also vary from website specific traffic to categorized application traffic such as 15.2% Netflix and 8.1% Dropbox. And if you configure it, you can have an email sent to you every week with usage, trends, etc to monitor your network. Any questions still, and you can go ahead and take a packet capture to manually sift through lines and lines of data for what you're looking for.
I plan on posting some more including some older post ideas about planning a proper ski/snowboarding trip and about my new home office setup with equipment and recommendations and what I wish I had done differently later.
The porter I had been working on for the past few months was finally finished and decided to enter the RailHawks Soktoberfest homebrewing competition to help raise money for TSF. My porter did well and though even I didn't win I got great feedback from other homebrewers. After the festival, Ty Shipalane decided to hang out with the Triangle Soccer Fanatics and play the bass and support the team.
In the past few weeks I've decided to get more aggressive with cycling. It has gone from being a workout to pushing how far I can go venturing out and finally surpassing 10 miles. It has also been a great way for me to see different parts of Raleigh too. I rode to the Museum of Art and the Reedy Creek Trail after putting it off for a long time. Although it was really demanding, I found it very relaxing. Future rides including trying to hit 20 miles with a potential ride to downtown Raleig before I head back west.
I moved to Raleigh for work in July and after what seems like ages, I'm finally settled and enjoying it here. I've been studying like I've never studied before learning all kinds of new networking things for work but when I'm not studying I've had the opportunity to venture out and do some really cool things and meet some really interesting people.
One of the things that has been keeping me busy is the Triangle Soccer Fanatics. They're a group of people who support the Carolina RailHawks the local professional soccer team, and are responsible for maintaining the atmosphere during games. We get together before the games and tailgate and stay after to support the players and prepare for the next match.
North Carolina also finally got me into cycling. I got a hold of a Giant Escape III and have been riding that as much as I can. Raleigh is a very bike friendly area and there are over 100 miles of trails around the city. The only challenge of riding in this area is that it is very hilly. A 3 mile ride may not seem like much, but when you're going up about 900 feet and get caught by traffic lights/stop signs/road crossings on the downhill it really does become an uphill ride. Hopefully by the end of this month or next I will be able to break that 3 miles and hit my 5 mile goal.
Finally, it wouldn't be me if I didn't get a chance to brew a batch at my new home. I ventured into a porter and added my own touch to it with some chocolate. Fall Dark and Handsome by H-Factor Brewing will be officially ready on October 26th to be entered in a beer competition that is being held by the RailHawks organization. A portion of those proceeds will go towards the Triangle Soccer Fanatics to help fund the next year's activities. A label is in the works and will post pictures for the event when I get a chance but here is some information about the brew below.
- Name: Fall Dark and Handsome by H-Factor Brewing
- Style: Dark Chocolate American Porter
- Original Gravity ~1.046
- Final Gravity ~1.015
- ABV ~4.14%