PHP 7.3 and 7.4 Woes and solution

So this weekend I have been doing some LibreNMS installs and have been having to change the default CentOS PHP version. If it is Centos7 PHP 7.3 is recommend and if it’s Centos 8 then PHP 7.4 is recommended. I have some pretty good tutorials on installing Librenms that I follow. They all mention the remi repository. However, on a few of these networks the remi repository has been unreachable. So I just can’t cut and paste from the tuorials I use.

So what is a person to do? Lots of mirrors are available at All you have to do is some substitution.

Done and Done. Hope this helps. You should be using mirrors anyway when it comes to remi. However, most tutorials reference remi because it’s easy.

Shuffle poles for smart cities utilizing Siklu

Siklu, a global leader in Fixed 5G millimeter wave (mmWave) solutions for Gigabit Wireless Access (GWA), Smart City and security networks, today announced an initiative with Schréder, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of outdoor lighting systems, to create the first-ever “Wireless Smart Pole” – thanks to a new module available with the Schreder Smart Pole: the famous SHUFFLE. The new module will launch officially in 1Q 2021 under the name “SHUFFLE Wireless Backhaul.” This new wireless Smart Pole features all the latest equipment for Smart City services and Gigabit wireless connectivity provided by the Siklu MultiHaul™ line of radios, all built in into a sleek streetlight unit.

The SHUFFLE Smart Pole is constructed of rotatable and interchangeable modules that seamlessly integrate various LED lighting options, security cameras, Wi-Fi Access Points, EV charging sockets, audio speakers and small cells for 4G/5G mobile networks. Today when cities or campuses wish to add these devices to an existing pole, the result is an unsightly “Christmas tree” look with boxes and wires protruding everywhere. In addition, these devices need connectivity — fiber where available, but often wireless. Adding a wireless connectivity device externally can exacerbate the “aesthetics” problem.

The newly announced module on the SHUFFLE solves this problem by integrating all the cameras and APs, as well as the mmWave MultiHaul™, into a sleek and attractive unit measuring approximately between 3 and 7 meters high, depending on what modules are chosen. This release of the SHUFFLE is the world’s first Smart Pole with integrated Gigabit-speed mmWave connectivity, designed with aesthetics that do not intrude on its surroundings.

Proper BGP DENY-ALL filter for mikrotik

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Speed validation for compliance on ISP networks

Does your ISP network need a way to validate customer speeds? RDOF compliance? State compliance for broadband speeds and latency? as many of you know there are problems with using public speedtest servers to validate customer speeds.

J2networks, in conjunction with Aloremnetworks, has an on-premise solution that is easy to manage, small footprint, and scalable. Our appliance lets you add a speed test server in almost any part of your network. It’s small footprint and low power draw makes it easy to fit in remote cabinets as well as the data center.

Contact us for more details and pricing.

BGP, a single /24 and two diverse non-connected exit points

I am starting to see the following scenario more and more as IPv4 space is hard to get, but isn’t.

With ARIN it is still possible to get an IPv4 allotment. Many smaller ISPs qualify for a /24 and can get one if they wait long enough on the ARIN waiting list. a /24 of IPv4 space is the smallest block that 99% of the Internet allows to be advertised on the Capital I Internet. There are filter rules in place that drop smaller prefixes because that is the agreed upon norm.

So what happens if you are an ISP and you have a shiny new /24 but you have two networks which are not connected. Let’s look at our scenario.

The above network have no connectivity between the two of them on the internal side. These could be half way across the world or next door. If they were half way across the world it would make sense to try and get another /24. Maybe they are either side of a big mountain or one is down in a valley and there is no way to get a decent link between the two networks.

So what is a way you can use this /24 and still be able to assign IP addresses to both sides of the network? One way is to use a tunnel between your two edge routers.

Without the tunnel the scenario is traffic could come into network1, but if the IP is assigned on network 2 it will come back as unreachable. BGP is all about networks finding the shortest path to other networks. You don’t have much control over how networks find your public IP space if you have two providers advertising the same information. Some of the Internet will come in Network2 and some will come in Network1.

By running a tunnel between the two you can now subnet out that /24 into two eqal /25s and assign one /25 Network1 and one /25 to Network2 or however you want to. You can make the tunnel a GRE, EOIP, or other tunnel type. If I am using Mikrotik I prefer to use EOIP. If it’s another vendor I tend to use GRE.

Once the tunnel is established you can use static routing, OSPF, or your favorite IGP (interior Gateway Protocol) to “tell” one side about the routes on the other side. Let’s look at a fictional use.

In the above example our fictional ISP has an IPv4 block of They have two networks separated by a tall mountain range in the center. It’s too cost prohibitive to run fiber or a wireless backhaul between the two networks so they have two different upstream providers. The ISP is advertising this /24 via BGP to Upstream1 from the Network 1 router. Network 2 router is also advertising the same /24 via BGP to Upstream 2.

We now create a Tunnel between the Mikrotiks. As mentioned before this can be EOIP, GRE, etc. We won’t go into the details of the tunnel but let’s assume the ISP is using Mikrotik. We create an EOIP tunnel (tons of tutorials out there) between Network 1 router and Network 2 router. Once this is established we will use as our “Glue” on our tunnel interfaces at each side. Network 1 router gets Network 2 router gets

To keep it simple we have a static route statement on the Network 1 Mikrotik router that looks like this:

/ip route add dst-address= gateway=

This statement routes any traffic that comes in for via ISP 1 to network1 across the tunnel to the Network 2 router. The Network 2 router then send it to the destination inside that side of the network.

Conversely, we have a similar statement in the Network 2 Mikrotik router

/ip route add dst-address= gateway=

This statement routes any traffic that comes in for via ISP 2 to network2 across the tunnel to the Network 2 router. The Network 2 router then send it to the destination inside that side of the network.

It’s as simple as that. You can apply this to any other vendor such as Cisco, Juniper, PFSense, etc. You also do not have to split the network into even /25’s like I did. You can choose to have os of the ips available on one side and route a /29 or something to the other side.

The major drawback of this scenario is you will takef a speed hit because if the traffic comes in one side and has to route across the tunnel it will have to go back out to the public internet and over to the other ISP.


VMware Fusion and MacOS Big Sur

While doing some work tonight I received an update notification from VMware Fusion, which I use to run Windows 10 inside Mac OS.

• Fusion 11 can not run on macOS 11 Big Sur because it depends on Kernel Extensions which can no longer be used on macOS 11. 

Never fear there is a new version with newer pricing. Ugh!!

Finally, with this new version of Fusion, VMware is also shaking up its pricing with a new Fusion 12 Player licensing structure that is free for personal use. Fusion 12 Player users who want to use the software for commercial use will be able to purchase a license for $149, with an upgrade license available for $89 to those currently running Fusion 10 or 11.

A professional-level Fusion 12 Pro offers some additional power-user features and allows you to run on up to three devices (including Windows or Linux PCs running VMware’s Workstation Pro), with pricing set at $199 for a new license or $99 as an upgrade. Discounted educational pricing will also be available for Fusion 12, although many students will also be able to take advantage of the free personal use license.

Users who purchased Fusion 11.5 or Fusion 11.5 Pro after June 15 will be eligible for a free upgrade to Fusion 12 Player (commercial license) or Fusion 12 Pro.

So why is the upgrade needed? Fusion 12 phases out VMWare’s use of kernel extensions by using new Apple APIs to support its containers and virtual machines.

Bad news? It is not available yet.

Netbox Mikrotik Ansible Config generator

So, due to Covid, weather and everything else I am quite behind on blog updates and such. this is one that kinda fell through the cracks. I meant to get this out much sooner than now. My buddy Schylar Utley has a pretty cool projects for optimizing CPE deployments and such.

Check them out at

I have included an old video to give you an idea. I am sure things have changed since this video was created.

Amazon Sidewalk is announced

Amazon has announced a new feature called Sidewalk.

When enabled, Sidewalk uses a small portion of your Internet bandwidth to provide these services to you and your neighbors. This setting will apply to all of your supported Echo and Ring devices that are linked to your Amazon account. 

In essence, what this does is it uses Bluetooth running in the 900MHZ band to form an adjacency with neighbors and other Sidewalk enabled devices. In the old CB terms, we might call this a sideband connection. Amazon is using a portion of a sidewalk enabled device to create a shared network in your community. Some of the examples they use are for locating lost pets with a sensor tied to their collar. As the pet passes your neighbor’s sidewalk enabled hub you will see that on a map. Another example might be a sensor that can’t see your wifi network but might see the neighbors.

You can read more at the link below, but here is the quick and dirty from their FAQ.

How does Amazon Sidewalk work?
Customers with a Sidewalk Bridge (today, many Echo devices, Ring Floodlight Cams and Ring Spotlight Cams) can contribute a small portion of their internet bandwidth, which is pooled together to create a shared network that benefits all Sidewalk-enabled devices in a community. Amazon Sidewalk uses Bluetooth, the 900 MHz spectrum and other frequencies to extend coverage and provide these benefits.

What does Amazon charge for use of the network?
Amazon does not charge any fees to join Amazon Sidewalk, which uses a small portion of bandwidth from a Sidewalk Bridge’s existing internet service. Standard data rates from internet providers may apply.

How will Amazon Sidewalk impact my personal wireless bandwidth and data usage?
The maximum bandwidth of a Sidewalk Bridge to the Sidewalk server is 80Kbps, which is about 1/40th of the bandwidth used to stream a typical high definition video. Today, when you share your Bridge’s connection with Sidewalk, total monthly data used by Sidewalk, per account, is capped at 500MB, which is equivalent to streaming about 10 minutes of high definition video.

Will I know what other Sidewalk-enabled devices are connected to my Bridge?
Preserving customer privacy and security is foundational to how we’ve built Amazon Sidewalk. Information transferred over Sidewalk Bridges is encrypted and Bridge customers are not able to see that Sidewalk-enabled devices are connected to their Bridge. Customers who own Sidewalk-enabled devices will know they are connected to Sidewalk but will not be able to identify which Bridge they are connected to. For more information, visit our whitepaper here.