Why KNX?

In What is this Home Automation stuff anyway? i mentioned the primitive electrical state of our new home. Whilst there were separate circuits for the fridge and wall oven, the rest of the two-storey house was fed with 1 lighting circuit and 1 power circuit per floor. Individual residual current breakers? No chance.

The lighting was dismal too. The upstairs rooms all had ceiling fans with no two alike. Some were AC, the rest DC, and all had some kind of inbuilt “light”, with luxurious on/off control. I’m using quotes there because they didn’t do much of a job of illuminating the room. The fans went, replaced by MATCHING (heaven forbid!) DC devices, however that left us with even less light upstairs.

We’d lived in our last home for just shy of 20 years, and I’d built up quite the well-established Home Automation setup, based upon Clipsal’s “C-Bus” building management platform, so some degree of Home Automation (herein “HA”) was a given for the new place. In that 20 years, Clipsal’s been bought out by Schneider Electric, and to my mind poor C-Bus has been largely left to rot. Sure, the switches have been updated into the current plate designs, but there’s not been much movement beyond that.

So what’s KNX?

 
The KNX association logo
Continue reading ‘Why KNX?’ »

What is this Home Automation stuff anyway?

At the start of 2022, Rocky and I bought a new home and moved in. (It’s 15 years old but it’s new to us.)

To say it was rather devoid of technology was an understatement. It was almost entirely devoid of *lighting*, FFS!

We’ve spent the year thus far making it a comfortable little “tech nest”, filling it with things like servers, Raspberry Pi’s, Wi-Fi, data cabling, solar panels, a Tesla PowerWall [currently on back-order], the magic of the electric light – and also home automation.

The term “home automation” (herein “HA”) is used a lot these days, and it covers a vast range of technologies and functionality.

Wikipedia defines HA as “building automation for a home, called a smart home or smart house. A home automation system will monitor and/or control home attributes such as lighting, climate, entertainment systems, and appliances. It may also include home security such as access control and alarm systems. When connected with the Internet, home devices are an important constituent of the Internet of Things (“IoT”).”

That sounds all very Jetsons or Star Trek, complicated, expensive and futuristic, but you don’t need to go all-out to have HA.

I like to consider HA as just using a non-traditional control system or input to switch an output, something other than a directly-connected wall-mounted switch or a dial to control a light. (Maybe HA comes when you abstract the control system from the device?)

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SfB 2019 Server Security Update – July 2022

This Security update for SfBS 2019 is build 7.0.2046.404, up from April’s 7.0.2046.396. It updated four components on my Standard Edition Front-End.

What’s Fixed?

This security update resolves a remote code execution vulnerability in Microsoft Skype for Business Server and Microsoft Lync Server. To learn more about these vulnerabilities, see Microsoft Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2022-33633.

What’s New?

Nothing noted. No cmdlets have been added to the SfB module in this update.

What’s Changed?

Nothing noted.

Continue reading ‘SfB 2019 Server Security Update – July 2022’ »

SfB 2015 Server Security Update – July 2022

This security update for SfBS 2015 is build 6.0.9319.634, up from April’s 6.0.9319.628. It updated four components on my Standard Edition Front-End.

What’s Fixed?

This security update resolves a remote code execution vulnerability in Microsoft Skype for Business Server and Microsoft Lync Server. To learn more about these vulnerabilities, see Microsoft Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2022-33633.

What’s New?

Nothing noted. No cmdlets have been added to the SfB module in this update.

What’s Changed?

Nothing noted.

Continue reading ‘SfB 2015 Server Security Update – July 2022’ »

SfB 2015 Server Security Update – April 2022

This security update for SfBS 2015 is build 6.0.9319.628, up from February’s 6.0.9319.623. It updated only three components on my Standard Edition Front-End.

What’s Fixed?

This security update (KB5012686) resolves vulnerabilities in Microsoft Skype for Business Server. To learn more about these vulnerabilities, see Microsoft Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2022-26910 and Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2022-26911.

What’s New?

Nothing noted. No cmdlets have been added to the SfB module in this update.

What’s Changed?

Nothing noted.

Continue reading ‘SfB 2015 Server Security Update – April 2022’ »

SfB 2019 Server Security Update – April 2022

This update for SfBS 2019 is build 7.0.2046.396, up from last December’s 7.0.2046.385. It updated three components on my Standard Edition Front-End.

What’s Fixed?

This security update (KB5012686) resolves vulnerabilities in Microsoft Skype for Business Server. To learn more about these vulnerabilities, see Microsoft Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2022-26910 and Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures CVE-2022-26911.

(Thanks to Jörg von der Ohe on Twitter for revealing the above info).

What’s New?

Nothing noted. No cmdlets have been added to the SfB module in this update.

What’s Changed?

Nothing noted.
Continue reading ‘SfB 2019 Server Security Update – April 2022’ »

SfB 2015 Server Update – February 2022

Our last update to Skype for Business Server 2015 was six months ago, to 6.0.9319.619.

Today we see build 6.0.9319.623, which only tweaked two components on my Standard Edition Front-End.

What’s Fixed?

  • Kb 5010770 RGS queue timeout action does not work for nested queues

What’s New?

Nothing noted. No cmdlets have been added to the SfB module in this update.

What’s Changed?

Nothing noted.

What’s Gone?

Nothing noted. No commandlets have also been removed from the SfB PowerShell module.

Continue reading ‘SfB 2015 Server Update – February 2022’ »

SfB 2019 Server Update – December 2021

This update for SfBS 2019 is build 7.0.2046.385, up from May’s 7.0.2046.369. It updated ten components on my Standard Edition Front-End, and also uninstalled the now-obsolete Skype for Business Online PowerShell module.

What’s Fixed?

Heaps!

  • Kb 5006005 Unexpected disconnection occurs in Mediation Server of Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005995 “Unhandled exception” error in CAS for very large meeting deactivation in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 4458682 “Failed creating application activity” error when you use the Test-CsUcwaConference cmdlet in Skype for Business Server 2019 and 2015
  • Kb 4458682 “Failed creating application activity” error when you use the Test-CsUcwaConference cmdlet in Skype for Business Server 2019 and 2015
  • Kb 5005992 UCWA mobile and SDK clients disconnect in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005994 Remote PowerShell doesn’t connect after you install 7.0.2046.367 in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005998 Can’t add PSTN call if gateways are from different sites in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006002 Export-csArchivingData returns encrypted files uploaded to a conference in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005993 Supervised transfer continues after blind transfer starts in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 4458682 “Failed creating application activity” error when you use the Test-CsUcwaConference cmdlet in Skype for Business Server 2019 and 2015
  • Kb 5005990 Busy on Busy blocks calls although a user is available on Skype for Business 2019
  • Kb 5005996 Using AlwaysUnverified for AllowedDomains treats domains as discovered in Microsoft Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006000 Skype for Business 2019 client disconnects every two minutes
  • Kb 5006006 SBA user can’t escalate PSTN call when adding PSTN user if LBR is enforced in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006009 Sending SIP REFER to federated endpoint fails in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006010 “Rtcab” error if you create an Exchange DL or security group object in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006011 BusyOnBusy heartbeat stops working in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006012 Busy Options ignores Teamcall group in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006014 Install Teams PowerShell Module after you install CU6 for Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006015 Missed call notification after escalating P2P call to conference while BoB is enabled in Microsoft Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005991 Join Launcher fails in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006013 UCMA app fails if UseRegistration is True and headers are added in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005997 You can’t create response groups in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5005999 iPhone user receives a call when you send them a file from Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006001 SefaUtil application doesn’t work in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006008 “Invalid assets location” error when you use new CDN endpoints in Skype for Business Server 2019
  • Kb 5006017 WebScheduler incorrectly displays “Astana” as Kazakhstan capital in Skype for Business Server 2019

Continue reading ‘SfB 2019 Server Update – December 2021’ »

OzPLAR customisation

I introduced OzPLAR in my previous post. It’s an evolution of the telephone intercom design I had published in Silicon Chip magazine back in 1992.

With my 2021 collaborator Ross we deliberately designed the circuit and PCB to accommodate a range of variations and alternate components so as to make it as flexible and globally-appealing as possible.

This page documents some of those variations.
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OzPLAR – the 2021 telephone intercom revamp

My original telephone intercom project was published in Silicon Chip magazine here in Oz in May 1992. Photocopies of that original article are still available from Silicon Chip, and they kindly let me re-publish the circuit here.

The intercom unit powered two telephones, allowing you to talk between them. Lifting one handset automatically started the other ringing, and cradling both devices resets it.

Applications were the obvious “batphone” intercom between two locations, whether those be neighbours down a country road, or from the main house to the granny-flat. Service people could use it to test and repair telephones, telephone collectors used it to make static displays more interactive, and it saw use on stage and screen where a phone was required to ring on set. In a corporate environment it could be used to couple two phone systems or telephony gateway devices that only had FXO interfaces, or turn an FXO port into an FXS one. I’ve used it personally to make a “phone call” between my modem and our home burglar alarm, allowing me to reprogram the latter from within the building.

Continue reading ‘OzPLAR – the 2021 telephone intercom revamp’ »