Configure your Belkin N150 router for BSNL broadband

  1. Login to your router dashboard. It should usually be at http://192.168.2.1.
  2. Now under “Inertnet WAN” click on “Connection Type”.
  3. Here select “PPPoE” and click on Next.
  4. Provide your BSNL username and password. Leave the “Service Name” field blank.
  5. For “VPI/VCI” field provide 0 and 35 as values.
  6. For “Encapsulation” field choose “LLC”.
  7. Leave all other fileds to their default values.
  8. Now Apply Changes. It will take around 30 seconds for the router to restart.
  9. Notice the top-right corner of the page and check the status. If it says “Connected”, then you are good to go.
  10. Else click on the “Home” link near that. On the home page click on Connect button.

Now you should be able to use this Wifi router with your BSNL broadband. Happy surfing. 🙂

PS: Now you no longer need to use your computer to dial the BSNL connection and login. Your router has your BSNL username and password, it will do the dialing and logging in.

Hack sbicapsec.com to run on Firefox

`AG_BACKQUOTE_TURN_ON`

www.sbicapsec.com is State Bank of India’s online share trading portal. This is a good portal but their site’s code quality is amazingly of low quality, dare I say, crappy. SBI being a public sector government institute, we can rest assured that the code quality or bugs in it would not get fixed soon, if ever.

Anyway as of now if you try using this portal in Firefox or Chrome, then maybe you will endup with a screen like this.

sbicapsec.com after login in Firefox. Notice no applet running, instead we have weird “:10”.

Notice the weird “:10” character in the screenshot, instead of the Java Applet.

Fixing sbicapsec.com to run in Firefox

Don’t worry the “hack” here is not illegal. This is used merely as an expression for making things work the way you want it which requires a lot of technical trickery to get it right.

The following has been tested in Firefox 13 and 14 in Mac OSX and Windows XP. You are free to try this as you may want it though. Also this should work in Chrome too.

Now let’s get into fixing this in few simple steps:-

  1. For your sake, open this blog page in your Firefox browser.
  2. Install GreaseMonkey browser extension. You may need to restart your browser.
  3. Install my GreaseMonkey user script by clicking on the link here – AppVersion Patch for SBICAPSEC.
  4. Click on Install button in the dialog box that you get.

That is it! You should now get the applet after login.

Fixed sbicapsec.com, after login.

How the fix works (for the technically inclined)

This section is for geeks, who would like to know how the script works. Also it is better to understand this, so that you understand, there is no malicious code in my script.

What is wrong in sbicapsec.com’s site? (Root cause)

The portal’s JS code assumes that `navigator.appVersion` will always return a string which will have a semi-colon (;). In fact that is true for IE and Chrome (in Mac OSX version only), but not for others. After this failure everything goes down like dominoes.

The popup we get after login has a `frameset` with three frames. The second one is the one which is supposed to present the Java applet. The layout of that page is roughly as below:-

[code lang=”html”]
<body>

<applet>
<param>
<param>
<param>

</applet>
</body>
[/code]

It seems the devs there had a requirement to set the `width` and `height` of the `applet` based on user screen’s dimension. For this they modified the code to use JS to dynamically generate the upper `applet` tag.

[code lang=”html”]
<body>

<script>
// This script will generate the upper applet tag with appropriate width and height.
</script>
<param>
<param>
:10
<param>

</applet>
</body>
[/code]

It is in the above `script` tag where it reads `navigator.appVersion` and tries to split it by `;` and then read the other part. When that errors out, so does the code following it. That code is supposed to write the upper `applet` tag. So, at the end we are left with many `param` tags and a dangling `</applet>` tag. The weird `:10` characters are written between two `param` tags.

From the way they have written the JS code, it seems the devs did not visualize the html page as a tree of blocks, instead for them it was a file stream; like the kind when you use your Java or C++ file output stream. The `script` block above uses `document.write()` to write the opening `applet` tag, instead of using JS to directly manipulate the DOM objects. I wonder how these devs can layout a page, who visualize it as a stream of characters? And, this is just a fraction of the real code, who knows what else is inside. It seems SBI needs to seriously train its devs. All this makes me loose faith over the security and reliability of their site.

Anyway, enough of the rant, back to the topic. The patch script I wrote will, simply try to do what there code was meant to do, add the `applet` tag. Because of the dangling `applet` end tag, I was unable to wrap my `applet` around the existing `param` tags. So, instead I detached all the `param` tags, emptied the parent (this reference was stored before detaching `param`), then added `param` tags inside the newly create `applet` tag and finally added the `applet` inside the previous parent of `param` tags.

I also tried using other techniques but they did not work. The first one was directly modifying `navigator.appVersion` to return a string with `;`, but it seems you cannot modify them. The second options was to replace existing `String.split()` function with my own version. In my version I would always return an array of at least length two, so that the code does not error out. Anyway this too did not work out since GreaseMonkey scripts are ran after the page is executed. GreaseMonkey does provide an option to run our scripts at the beginning too, but according to docs that is not supported inside frames.

Anyway, all’s well that ends well. 🙂

How to Reset the Root Password of MySql in Linux

I am posting this for my future reference. Also it my help passers by.

If you are using CentOS 6 (maybe others too). To reset the root password use the following steps:-

  1. sudo service mysqld stop
  2. sudo service mysqld startsos
  3. mysql -u root
  4. Now you will be at mysql prompt. Here type:-
    1. UPDATE mysql.user SET Password=PASSWORD(‘NewPassHere’) WHERE User=’root’;
    2. FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
    3. quit;
  5. sudo service mysqld restart

Script that notifies via email when your server has updates

If you are the administrator of a server then you definitely understand the importance of keeping your system updated always.

The following script will send you a mail whenever your server needs an update. The content of the mail will list out all the available updates.

The script

[code lang=”shell”]
#!/bin/bash
# Author: AppleGrew
# Site: www.applegrew.com
# License: GPL v2

yum check-update > /tmp/checkupdate.log
if [[ $? == 100 ]]
then
mail -s "New YUM updates available" -r admin@example.com $MAILTO < /tmp/checkupdate.log
fi
[/code]

Notes:

  • This script has been tested on CentOS 6 but should run on all RedHat based systems.
  • In the above script, change admin@example.com to any valid email id which your server is authorized to send. This the email id for the ‘From’ field. For example you can not set this to (say) someone@gmail.com. Since Google did not authorize your server to send emails on behalf of gmail.com.

Installation notes

  • Copy this script to some directory in your server and give it execute permission.
  • Now schedule a cron job for this script. You can set this job for any user, since this script does not need root privileges.
  • In the cronjob make sure to set the MAILTO environment variable. The script uses this variable to determine the recipient of the notification.

Example cronjob

[code lang=”plain”]
MAILTO=yourmail@email.com
0 0 * * * /home/user1/checkupdate.sh
[/code]

Access Ext3/Ext2 file system on Mac OSX Lion (10.7)

On Mac if you want to access ext3/etx2 filesystems, which are used by Linux systems, you will find lots of links on net but all are pretty outdate and they don’t work for Lion. So, here is the updated version, which works. At least for me. 😉

You will need two softwares:-

  1. OSXFuseDownload link
  2. Fuse-ext2Download link

Download and install them in the sequence shown above.

Fuse-ext2 needs MacFuse to run, but this is no longer maintained and does not work on Lion. OSXFuse is the next generation MacFuse, but Fuse-ext2 is not meant to work with this. Fortunately OSXFuse includes “MacFUSE Compatibility Layer”. Just make sure to select this option when installing OSXFuse and you are good to go.

When both of them are installed, then try plugging in ext3 or etx2 partitioned disk and they should get automatically mounted, just like any other disk. Note, after installing them you may or may not need to restart your system.

PS. You will be able to read the disks but not write to it. As of now write option is not reliable.