The Pitch Wouldn't it be great if there was a simple way to send a notification to your phone(s) with just a curl call? Then you could get notified when a script completes, a server reboots, a user logs in to a system, or a sensor connected to Home Assistant changes state. How great would that be??
ntfy.sh (pronounced notify) provides just that. It's an open-source, easy-to-use, HTTP-based notification service, and it can notify using mobile apps for Android (Play or F-Droid) or iOS (App Store) or a web app.
I've been leveraging the open-source Tanzu Community Edition Kubernetes distribution for a little while now, both in my home lab and at work, so I was disappointed to learn that VMware was abandoning the project. TCE had been a pretty good fit for my needs, and now I needed to search for a replacement. VMware is offering a free version of Tanzu Kubernetes Grid as a replacement, but it comes with a license solely for non-commercial use so I wouldn't be able to use it at work.
I've been doing a bit of work lately to make my vRealize Automation setup more flexible and dynamic and less dependent upon hardcoded values. To that end, I thought it was probably about time to learn how to interact with the vRA REST API. I wrote this post to share what I've learned and give a quick crash course on how to start doing things with the API.
Exploration Toolkit Swagger It can be difficult to figure out where to start when learning a new API.
For a while now, I've been using an OpenVPN Access Server virtual appliance for remotely accessing my homelab. That's worked fine but it comes with a lot of overhead. It also requires maintaining an SSL certificate and forwarding three ports through my home router, in addition to managing a fairly complex software package and configurations. The free version of the OpenVPN server also only supports a maximum of two simultaneous connections.
One of the requirements for my vRA deployments is the ability to automatically create a static A records for non-domain-joined systems so that users can connect without needing to know the IP address. The organization uses Microsoft DNS servers to provide resolution on the internal domain. At first glance, this shouldn't be too much of a problem: vRealize Orchestrator 8.x can run PowerShell scripts, and PowerShell can use the Add-DnsServerResourceRecord cmdlet to create the needed records.
Connecting a deployed Windows VM to an Active Directory domain is pretty easy; just apply an appropriately-configured customization spec and vCenter will take care of it for you. Of course, you'll likely then need to move the newly-created computer object to the correct Organizational Unit so that it gets all the right policies and such.
Fortunately, vRA 8 supports adding an Active Directory integration to handle staging computer objects in a designated OU.
While working on my vRealize Automation 8 project, I wanted to let users specify how large a VM's system drive should be and have vRA apply that without any further user intervention. For instance, if the template has a 60GB C: drive and the user specifies that they want it to be 80GB, vRA will embiggen the new VM's VMDK to 80GB and then expand the guest file system to fill up the new free space.
[Update 2021-03-12] This solution recently stopped working for me. While looking for a fix, I found that OpenVPN had published some notes on controlling the official OpenVPN Connect app from Tasker. Jump to the Update below to learn how I adapted my setup with this new knowledge.
I recently shared how I use Tasker and Home Assistant to keep my phone from charging past 80%. Today, I'm going to share the setup I use to automatically connect my phone to a VPN on networks I don't control.
A few months ago, I started using the AccuBattery app to keep a closer eye on how I'd been charging my phones. The app has a handy feature that notifies you once the battery level reaches a certain threshold so you can pull the phone off the charger and extend the lithium battery's service life, and it even offers an estimate for what that impact might be. For instance, right now the app indicates that charging my Pixel 5 from 51% to 100% would cause 0.