Archive for March, 2011

Fixing Frontier’s busted DNS

No Comments »

So, I have Frontier DSL service. Which means I have their ADSL service; they don’t offer a useful thing like SDSL (much like most providers). But what the do offer is DNS servers which respond to any invalid query with the IP address of one of their stupid search servers. I can’t believe that there are still ISPs out there who think it’s cool to return a result for an invalid DNS query, but I guess that’s the kind of logic that leads someone to buy Verizon’s former land line services. :/

Anyway, I run DD-WRT on my router behind the Frontier DSL router, mostly because I don’t trust any of their crap to protect my network. And I like using the embedded device as my DNS server.  Out of the box, the DD-WRT device uses DNSMasq as the DNS server (and DHCP server).  Reading the DNSMasq man page, I found that there’s an option to make it return “failed” when the upstream DNS returns a stupid search page like that.  In my case, the upstream server returns both and for those bad queries.

So, to fix that, you just go into your “services” main tab on the DD-WRT admin page, click on the services sub tab, and scroll down to the text box which says “Additional DNSMasq options”.  In there, paste this (substituting whatever IP you want to have trigger the “not found” response):


on a line by itself (you can put several lines in there, if needed, though for this you just need to pick one of the IPs returned).  Click on apply, and then test a known bad domain to see if it works.  Assuming you get “not found” now, you’ve resolved the problem; lookups which should fail, do fail.  Hooray.

While you’re in there, add a line for your local domain so it will stop asking the public DNS to resolve stuff.  Assuming you use “” in your internal network (which, BTW,  means you do terrible things you should not be doing), add a line (in the same box as before) that says:

The wagon lives! Sortof.

No Comments »

Well, I finally tracked down the reason the ABS light was activated in the wagon.  Apparently, battery voltage is one of the tests performed by the Bosch system used in the ’95 Caprice and friends.  Thanks, awesome website!  Anyway, my leaky air shocks were running the battery down and causing the low condition, even though the cool gear-reduction starter GM used on the LT1 (which, as long as you have the bigger flexplate/flywheel, you can also use on a Gen 1 smallblock or any of the big blocks, BTW) was cranking it over just fine.  So, the Battery Tender took care of that.

But I still have a problem with the transmission, and a power steering leak.  The steering leak is easy enough; I just have to replace the lines.  I’m gonna go ahead and put in the cooler return line used in the cop cars, since it has the extra loop of line which works as a steering cooler, and only costs a few bucks more.

The transmission is weird, though.  I blew the pump up a year or so ago, and just fixed it recently.  Now it runs, but what’s happening is that the computer tells the transmission to enter second, the transmission says “hey, I’m in second” – but it stays in first.  And since the shiftpoints are controlled by the road speed (which is annoying when you change tire sizes / gears / etc), you have to continue accelerating to the speed where it would normally do the 2-3 shift – except that you’re actually still in first.  So, the engine’s screaming,but the computer thinks all is fine because you’re supposedly in second.  Once it shift to third, the 3-4 shift happens as normal.

Now, I’m trying to figure out what’s going on.  I’m a tad concerned that I’ll have to pull the transmission back out an rebuild it.  But I don’t want to take it back out.  I’m considering just changing the shiftpoints to just skip second gear.  The thing makes enough torque that, with the better rear gears, I could drive it that way – or probably sell it to someone a little less mechanical.  But that’d be mean, and I’d probably feel bad. :)  So, it’ll get fixed.  Anyone with thoughts on how to do so is welcome to contact me. ;)


No Comments »

Spelling is an important skill, even if you sell gloves.


As it turns out, it s just as annoying to have your air suspension switch fail in the “too low, need more air” position as it is to end up in the “too high, remove air” position. :/

Bouncy ride home…