Understanding VLAN Configuration on FreeBSD

Until recently, I’ve never had a chance to use VLANs on FreeBSD hosts, though I sometimes configure them on ethernet switches. But when I was playing with vnet jails, I suddenly got interested in VLAN configuration on FreeBSD and experimented with it for some time. I wrote this short article to summarize my current understanding of how to configure VLANs on FreeBSD. Terminology I think the word VLAN is being used in at least two different senses.
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Building a WireGuard Jail with the FreeBSD's Standard Tools

Recently, I had an opportunity to build a WireGuard jail on a FreeBSD 12.1 host. As it was really quick and easy to setup and it has been working completely fine for a month, I’d like to share my experience with anyone interested in this topic. I would like to use WireGuard app on my Android phone to access my home NAS (a vanilla FreeBSD server) via the WireGuard tunnel and reach the Internet through the tunnel too.
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Running X Applications on a Jail created with Bastille

FreeBSD jails are often talked about from a security or system administration perspective. Although it’s a perfectly valid point of view, jails can also be used for other purposes. In fact, just recently I benefited from a jail in such a situation. It once again convinced me that jails were really awesome and made me write up this short article. Assumptions The host is a graphical desktop workstation running FreeBSD 12.
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How to use Joplin desktop app on FreeBSD

This is a quick note on how I build and use the latest Joplin desktop app on FreeBSD. For my initial exploration of Joplin on FreeBSD, please refer to the previous post. Target Version The current target version of this article is Joplin Electron release v1.0.233 (Aug 2020). I confirmed that the app could be built using my fork at the tag freebsd-20200802. Building Joplin I take the following steps to build Joplin desktop on my FreeBSD 12.
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Expanding a GELI-encrypted ZFS pool

My personal FreeBSD 11.3 server (VPS) was running low on storage space. By using the VPS provider’s disk expansion option, I could easily grow the virtual disk. But then I wondered how to expand the filesystem on it. In my case, the filesystem is on a GELI-encrypted ZFS storage pool. So I had to resize the following entities. GPT freebsd-zfs partition GELI device on the GPT partition ZFS pool comprised of the GELI device After rehearsing on VirtualBox VMs, I took the following steps to get more free space for the server.
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ThinkPad T480 is my new main laptop which runs FreeBSD

I’ve been using FreeBSD as my primary server OS for quite a long time. But, for unknown reasons, I have never seriously used it on client workstations. Maybe it’s partly because I’m a CUI-oriented person who loves doing things on text terminals as much as possible. Actually, I have been pretty happy with any client OS as long as I could use a decent terminal on it, so that I could SSH into FreeBSD servers where I spent a lot of time doing jobs which didn’t require graphical interface.
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Growing a ZFS Mirror Pool

I have a tiny home server for my family. It’s based on Atom N2800 CPU and runs FreeBSD 11.2 with a two-disk ZFS mirror. Originally it had two 500GB disks, but now it has a 500GB and a 1TB ones because one of them was replaced due to a failure. As the Handbook says, the available space of a mirror pool is limited by the size of the smallest disk. So my server can still get only 500GB from the total space of 1.
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Mounting ZFS Root failed when an external USB drive is connected

Last week, one of my FreeBSD 11.2 servers failed to boot with the following error after freebsd-update. Mounting from zfs:zroot/ROOT/default failed with error 6; retrying for 3 more seconds It was the first time I encountered this type of error. After struggling for some hours, I was able to boot the server by disconnecting an external USB harddrive, which I had prepared as a secondary backup storage. But since then, I had been wondering what the root cause was.
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Testing Joplin (Terminal and Desktop) and Web Clipper on FreeBSD

TL;DR (2020-01-15) This article describes my initial exploration of Joplin in June 2019. It’s not intended to be a tutorial/howto and it’s not necessarily up to date. Please refer to the newer post for more up-to-date and concise description on how to use Joplin on FreeBSD. I’ve been using Evernote since April 2011. Although there were times the app got disappointing updates or the service was unexpectedly interrupted (or more often expectedly interrupted by regular maintenance), it had been a great app/service and hopefully it is and it will be.
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WireGuard on FreeBSD Quick Look Part 2: Android Remote Access

After playing briefly with WireGuard (See previous post) on FreeBSD VNET Jails, today I performed a quick test between a FreeBSD host and an Android device over the Internet. NOTE: WireGuard is still in early stage of development. Android app is clearly marked with beta and Go-implementation (wireguard-go) has no official release yet. This article just shows you what I did to take a look at it. 2020-04-26: I wrote a new post on building a WireGuard jail with the FreeBSD’s standard tools.
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