Securing you DokuWiki

After my WHS died and I moved to a Synology DS413 and using that as a ‘home server’ and have been extremely happy with it! The only thing I miss is backing up the Windows machines automatically (as WHS did), but overall I think this is better, flexible and more powerful compared to WHS.

I needed to look for a new wiki software. I recently moved from ScrewTurn Wiki (which was great BTW, but then is a dead project now) to DokuWiki which is perfect for my needs. I run two wiki’s at home and has much of our day-to-day things we as a family need. There are some sections of the Wiki, which are sensitive and I don’t want anyone one the network getting to it. I wanted to authenticate the user and once they login only then get to that.

As it turns out, securing your DokuWiki is quite simple. If you are interested in a similar setup then here is what you need to do:

  1. Disable the registration option on Configuration settings. Some details on this can be found here.
  2. Update the ACL (more of that here), there is a user group called ‘ALL’; set the permision for this group to “None”.
  3. For the user group “User”, change the permisions to Edit.

Securing DocuWiki

This will ensure only logged in (and of course authenticated users) can read and edit and a anonymous user cannot see anything.

The only catch in this is that you need to manually maintain the users (e.g. add new users); my userbase is very small at home, so this is not a challenge at all.

WHS is back!

My WHS was dead for close to a year now with no automatic backups happening! I knew the issue was one of the HDD’s had failed, but I did not have time to take them out and plug them somewhere else to figure out the exact issue. I finally bought a couple of new disks and restored the WHS over the weekend and everything is running fine now. Also got about 101 GB backed up on S3, which is good.

Now, the question I have is which Add-ins do you recommend? I have the original WHS (v1) and not Vail (WHS 2011). I am already running Cloudberry. I would like something which can tweet the health status which I can monitor.

Tips on Buying a UPS?

After moving to Bangalore, it turns out that I would need to get one or more UPS’s for the machines at home. The place we will be moving to in a few weeks does have power backup, but if/when there is a power cut it takes a few minutes for the generators to kick in and is not instantaneous as I was thinking.

I have never bought a UPS until now and don’t have any experience with it – what are the things that I need to consider? I will have the following equipment running which will need to be powered up for about 15 minutes:

  • 4 Desktops (including a MCE and WHS)
  • Two 17” LCD Monitors
  • A set of powered Speakers (optional)
  • Few switches
  • KVM Switch
  • VOIP Phone
  • Wireless Router
  • DSL Modem

Would it make sense to buy a few smaller UPS’s instead of one big one? Which is a good one? How much wattage/capacity should I look to get? Can one get second-hand ones – are they recommended? Does the UPS required any maintenance or are they maintenance free these days? 😕

Of all the machines, the WHS is one of the most critical ones. Is there any UPS’s which work well with some Add-Ins? I am interested in WHS shutting down in an orderly fashion so as to save all the data whenever the UPS battery gets low (in case for some reason the generators don’t kick in).

Thinking of a new WHS device/machine

Not sure how many of you know, but I run my WHS on a old Dell Desktop (its about 8ish years old) which ran out of available USB ports sometime back and all my attached drives are also filling up and I am now running low on space. I was thinking of getting a dedicated WHS device/machine (not sure what to call it), such as HP’s MediaSmart Server or Acer’s easyStore.

Does anyone know any details of the next version of WHS (based on Win7)? When is it coming out, etc? If it is in a few months then I can hang on and clean up some space and make do. If it is in another year or so then that it too long to wait and I will probably go ahead and look to get something. Any ideas anyone?

Update: How eerie? Soon after posting this I find (via Twitter) this post from Mary-Jo talking about the next version of WHS codenamed ‘Vail’ is leaked. You can find screen shot here and a short video here. There is no mention of any time-lines though – any ideas?

WHS and iPhone

This of course is not new – just new to me. If you have an HP MediaSmart WHS (Windows Home Server) then you can stream music, photos and videos directly from your WHS to your iPhone – how sweet is that. More details here. Maybe I should look at getting a HP one when my existing 8+ year old WHS dies (touch wood).

WHS now on MSDN

Windows Home Server (the amazing little box), is finally available on MSDN. I had bought an OEM license soon after it had come out and have been using it for some time at home. This can only be good and allow a wider set of adoption. If you have not used it – I would highly recommend that you do. Here is the screenshot from MSDN:

image

WHS Power Pack 1 Released

This more than a "Power Pack" and fixes a whole host of issues including the (in)famous data corruption bug. If you have been living in a cave then you can catch up here on what the fuss is all about? Here are the highlights of the fixes:

  • Support for home computers that are running Windows Vista x64 editions
  • Backup of Home Server shared folders
  • Improvements to remote access
  • More efficient power consumption
  • Improved performance
  • If you are running WHS I would highly recommend you install this; you can get WHS PP1 from here.

    WHS Power Pack 1

    MS has announced the details of what is new on WHS Power Pack 1 and it seems a collection of things which one would want to add to WHS. It is good to see the amount of testing  gone into this and the fact they have upgrades coming out so soon after RTM.

    Home Server Domain Name Setup

    Until recently I was running the RC of WHS (being part of the Beta program); but as that was expiring I coughed up for the OEM version. After installing it when I tried to configure the domain name to mychoice.homeserver.com I got an unknown error. I tried both homeserver.com and livenode.com options but neither of them worked.

    It seemed to get these working you need to open IE on your WHS and go to Tools => Security => Trusted Sites => Sites and add the following two sites and try adding it again and all should be OK then.

    • http://208.99.195.35
    • https://208.99.195.35

    WHS Backup Blues

    I have not been very happy with WHS lately – and the backups have been failing as you can see in the two screen shots below. Huh?

    image

    image

    Looking at the event log there have been many errors. I have not had the time to research these and see what is wrong. Here is a sampling on what is going on:

    Event Type:    Error
    Event Source:    Application Error
    Event Category:    (100)
    Event ID:    1000
    Date:        25/08/2007
    Time:        02:57:39
    User:        N/A
    Computer:    TRINITY
    Description:
    Faulting application whsbackup.exe, version 6.0.1424.2, faulting module whsbackup.exe, version 6.0.1424.2, fault address 0x00056e8e.

    For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.
    Data:
    0000: 41 70 70 6c 69 63 61 74   Applicat
    0008: 69 6f 6e 20 46 61 69 6c   ion Fail
    0010: 75 72 65 20 20 77 68 73   ure  whs
    0018: 62 61 63 6b 75 70 2e 65   backup.e
    0020: 78 65 20 36 2e 30 2e 31   xe 6.0.1
    0028: 34 32 34 2e 32 20 69 6e   424.2 in
    0030: 20 77 68 73 62 61 63 6b    whsback
    0038: 75 70 2e 65 78 65 20 36   up.exe 6
    0040: 2e 30 2e 31 34 32 34 2e   .0.1424.
    0048: 32 20 61 74 20 6f 66 66   2 at off
    0050: 73 65 74 20 30 30 30 35   set 0005
    0058: 36 65 38 65               6e8e   

     

    Event Type:    Error
    Event Source:    HomeServer
    Event Category:    Backup
    Event ID:    272
    Date:        25/08/2007
    Time:        02:56:47
    User:        N/A
    Computer:    TRINITY
    Description:
    Unexpected error 0x45d from WriteFile on D:\folders\{00008086-058D-4C89-AB57-A7F909A47AB4}\Data.4096.16.dat: The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error.

    For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

     

    Event Type:    Error
    Event Source:    HomeServer
    Event Category:    Backup
    Event ID:    267
    Date:        25/08/2007
    Time:        02:56:47
    User:        N/A
    Computer:    TRINITY
    Description:
    Client Backup server failed at d:\qhsv1_rc\qhs\src\backup\util\diskfile.cpp(421)

    For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

    Adding a Drive in WHS

    I have been experimenting with Windows Home Server at home and running the RC1. I was low on disk space (having only one internal 80 gb HDD which was also running the OS). It started with one of the annoying Network Health alerts telling me I am low on disk space. Since there was no room in the old machine I am running this one to add another internal HDD I decided to plug in an external USB HDD.

    image

    Thankfully installing a new drive and configuring this in WHS is a "no brainer" by design given the target audience of your average user. Once the OS has installed the drive it shows up in WHS (as you can see below). However, at this time this disk is not part of the storage available to WHS.

    image 

    To make the disk part "available" to WHS you need explicitly add this disk. To do so right click and choose add and then follow the prompts. Of course you will loose all data on that drive so make sure there is nothing on it you might keep.

    image

    The rest is just a matter of following the Wizard.

    image image

    image image

    Of course adding an internal disk would entail more work as you would need to shutdown, open the case and add the drive. Also I did not need any drivers, etc but if the OS needs any drivers to recognize the disk all that is something you need to manage and cannot handled by WHS.

    Lastly, WHS does not use RAID, but some other mechanism to achieve the same results. As a result you don't see any options for this when adding a new drive. If you want redundancy you need to select the "Enable Folder Duplication" option on your data.

    More WHS Errors

    Here is a flavor or some more WHS errors that I have been getting in the eventlog and not really had the time to do the research to figure out what they are. Looking at these (and there are man more), does not inspire too much confidence Sad and I am varied to start using this in "production" mode. Hopefully they have been fixed in the RTM version but as I am running RC1, not sure.

    One:

    Event Type: Error
    Event Source: MRxSmb
    Event Category: None
    Event ID: 8003
    Date:  05/08/2007
    Time:  13:05:04
    User:  N/A
    Computer: TRINITY
    Description:
    The master browser has received a server announcement from the computer IO that believes that it is the master browser for the domain on transport NetBT_Tcpip_{C301E839-1BC7-4B75-B3CC. The master browser is stopping or an election is being forced.

    For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.
    Data:
    0000: 00 00 00 00 03 00 52 00   ……R.
    0008: 00 00 00 00 43 1f 00 c0   ….C..À
    0010: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00   ……..
    0018: 11 00 00 00 00 00 00 00   ……..
    0020: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00   ……..

    Two:

    Event Type: Error
    Event Source: HomeServer
    Event Category: Backup
    Event ID: 267
    Date:  04/08/2007
    Time:  04:20:16
    User:  N/A
    Computer: TRINITY
    Description:
    Client Backup server failed at d:\qhsv1_rc\qhs\src\backup\util\diskfile.cpp(421)

    For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

    Three:

    Event Type: Error
    Event Source: HomeServer
    Event Category: Backup
    Event ID: 272
    Date:  04/08/2007
    Time:  04:20:16
    User:  N/A
    Computer: TRINITY
    Description:
    Unexpected error 0x45d from WriteFile on D:\folders\{00008086-058D-4C89-AB57-A7F909A47AB4}\Data.4096.14.new: The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error.

    For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

    Windows Home Server's Network Health

    At first I thought the Network Health notification of Windows Home Server (WHS) was pretty cool, but now after using it for about a month it actually gets very annoying. Below is a screen shot showing me some of the options. On two machines the backup was not successful and I have ignored these, but the list keeps growing. I cannot find a way (via the GUI – have not mucked around to see if there is a registry setting or a command tool, etc.) to "delete" the warnings that I am OK with and choose to ignore. Also the warnings occur on every machine which is setup in WHS – like a very wanting spoilt brat Smile. Hopefully nagging things like these have been fixed in the RTM bits.

    image