iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus announced

September 8th, 2014

Apple have announced the new iPhone 6 on the iPhone 6 plus. The iPhone 6 has a 4.7 inch screen and the iPhone 6+ has a 5.5 inch screen. Both are thinner than the previous models and have more rounded edges like the iPad Air.

Raspberry Pi Updated to Model B+

July 30th, 2014


The two-year-old a Raspberry Pi has been updated with a new model replacing the original Model B a model B+. This is very similar to pass a new slightly smaller form factor and double the number of USB ports. In addition the power supply has been improved reducing the requirement for a USB powered hub.

The process remains the same and very fewer other features change.

Apple announce iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite

June 5th, 2014


Apple have announced their annual upgrade to iOS and OS X. iOS 8 will be released to coincide with the iPhone 6 in the autumn. OS X Yosemite replaces OS X Mavericks and increases tie up between iOS and OS X.

Provided you have an iPhone and Mac you will be up to handover calls and SMS messages from your Mac to iPhone and back.

HealthKit was demonstrated for developers to create health-based applications.

Tesco Mobile add Personal Hotspot for iPhone after 3 years

April 27th, 2014

The option to share internet access through your mobile data connection (3G or 4G) from your phone to a laptop, tablet or other device is now know as tethering (for those with long enough memories it was called a “data modem” in the Ericsson T39 days but worked via a cable rather than with WiFi).

Ericsson T39Data Cable Ericsson T39

With the Apple iPhone the ability to tether (worked on iPhoneOS 3) is now known as Personal Hotspot (introduced in March 2011) as the internet connection from the mobile data contract is shared by WiFi.  In iOS 7.1 the use of tethering has been tightened up by Apple. However, this feature can be disabled by the mobile phone carrier as was the case with Tesco Mobile when iOS4.3 introduced the feature.  The Tesco Mobile website FAQ stated for several years that they were working on adding the feature.  With iOS 7.1 Tesco Mobile have added the Personal Hotspot feature to the iPhone.


Windows 8 ISO and Windows 8.1 ISO download

March 24th, 2014

I have been trying to obtain a copy of the Windows 8.0 Pro ISO disc image to burn to DVD.  This is surprisingly hard to do depending on your circumstances.

I bought the Windows 8 Pro download when it was on offer for £24.99 in Jan 2013 to install through Boot Camp on my MacBook Pro.  Having had issues with the Windows partition which had since been upgraded to Windows 8.1 via the Windows store, I decided to start afresh!

I had assumed that the Windows USB image I had created to repair and reinstall Windows 8 would work with Boot Camp 5.  This seems to depend on which Mac you have!  My Early 2011 MacBook Pro certainly didn’t want to play.

I went to the Windows 8 upgrade with just a product code page which rather unhelpfully does not let you download an ISO.  Instead you must download an installer onto the machine you want to upgrade.  As I could not access the Boot Camp partition I used another Mac with Windows Vista Ultimate (32-bit) to download the ISO.

Although not mentioned anywhere, and for no obvious reason, Microsoft will only let you download a 32-bit ISO on a 32-bit copy of Windows and 64-bit ISO on a 64-bit copy of Windows!  It doesn’t even tell you which version you are getting.

The issue for Boot Camp 5 with Mavericks is that only 64-bit editions of Windows 8 (and 7) are supported!

I then moved to downloading Windows 8 ISO as a 64-bit file by reinstalling Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit.

BFBS Germany Satellite Reception

February 2nd, 2014

The BFBS Satellite system in Germany needs updating to take into account changes to the transmissions on EutelSat 10E.

The transmissions have been changed from DVB-S to DVB-S2. The TechniSat box needs to be retuned.

BBC Satellite TV in Germany

January 20th, 2014

humax 90cm satellite dish

The BBC have migrated all services from Astra 1N to Astra 2E and Astra 2F at 28.2E


BBC have launched 5 new HD channels

December 9th, 2013


In addition to BBC One HD and BBC Two HD the new channels available in HD are:

  • BBC Three HD
  • BBC Four HD
  • BBC News HD
  • CBeebies HD

They are available on Sky HD, Freeview HD, YouView, Virgin Media and Freesat HD.  The new BBC HD launch was brought forward in time for Christmas, as originally they should have launched in early 2014.

Humax HDR-1010S freesat+ HD with < free time >

November 25th, 2013


The Humax HDR-1010S set top box is the latest generation of satellite television recorder for the UK’s free-to-air Freesat service.  Freesat HD refers to devices that can decode High Definition TV channels with Freesat+ and Freesat+ HD referring to devices that can record content following on from  the branding of Sky’s first recordable TV service Sky+.


<free time> refers to the new Electronic Programme Guide (EPG) that has introduced for Freesat.  It ties in with Internet based On Demand services including the BBC iPlayerITV Player and 4OD to allow looking earlier in the guide and watch shows that have already been broadcast.

Configure a Virtual Private Server (VPS) for a Virtual Private Network (VPN)

October 12th, 2013

I purchased a years worth of Virtual Private Server (VPS) from httpzoom.com for the purpose of setting up a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

The VPS costs £12/year and comes with 500GB bandwidth.  It runs CentOS and I installed a PPTP server to connect iPhones, iPads and Macs through the VPN.  I will look to add OpenVPN later and a method of supporting Apple TV and PS3 in the future.  I soon leart that I needed to protect the server somewhat better on the internet so I installed fail2ban on CentOS to protect from bot hacking attempts.