Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission

Serving the Greater Philadelphia region for more than 50 years, DVRPC convenes the widest array of partners across a nine-county, two state region to increase mobility choices, protect and preserve natural resources, and create healthy communities that foster greater opportunities for all. City, county and state representatives work together to address key issues, including transportation, land use, environmental protection, economic development, and equity.

DVRPC was formed by an Interstate Compact through legislation passed by the Pennsylvania Legislature in 1965, as reenacted and amended in 1967, and by the New Jersey Legislature in a series of conforming acts passed between 1966 and 1974.

A good link to understand current progress and funding for various construction projects supporting the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) in the Delaware Valley: DVRPC TIP Viewer


Users and Security

Research from Dartmouth College Computer Science regarding users and security:

In real world domains, from healthcare to power to finance, we deploy computer systems intended to streamline and improve the activities of human agents in the corresponding non-cyber worlds. However, talking to actual users (instead of just computer security experts) reveals endemic circumvention of the computer-embedded rules. Good-intentioned users, trying to get their jobs done, systematically work around security and other controls embedded in their IT systems.

Source: Mismorphism: a Semiotic Model of Computer Security Circumvention by Sean W. Smith, Ross Koppel, Jim Blythe, Vijay Kothari

Setup Pi-Hole in Azure

Pi-Hole is a network wide DNS sinkhole that can be setup on multiple software/hardware configurations. Originally, I was going down the path of setting up Pi-Hole on a Raspberry Pi 3, but decided to explore the Azure VM path based on some posts from others.

Below are the high level steps I followed to setup Pi-Hole on my home network.

1.Create a VM in Azure and keep track of the public IP. (I picked the Ubuntu 18.04 LTS version with 1 CPU and 1 GB of RAM.)

2. Create an inbound firewall rule to enable SSH traffic (i.e. TCP Port 22) from your home network

Home > Virtual machines > Connect to virtual machine > Networking

3. SSH to the VM and update the package database

sudo apt-get update

4. Install Pi-hole

curl -L | bash

5. Configure Pi-hole for your environment. Some suggested configuration options are below[2]

6. Create an inbound firewall rule to enable Web traffic (i.e. TCP Port 80, 443) from your home network

8. Confirm you can access the Admin page of Pi-Hole by going to <VM IP>

9. Create an inbound firewall rule to enable DNS traffic (i.e. TCP/UDP Port 53)

10. Update your home router’s DNS to point to the public IP of your VM by following instructions at How do I configure my devices to use Pi-hole as their DNS server?

11. Test that Pi-Hole is properly configured by visiting the Pi-Hole Ad Pages Test Page.

[1] Post Implementation Notes:

  • Under the VM, check Operations > Auto-shutdown to confirm the settings match the shutdown behavior of the VM you want
  • Under the VM, check Operations > Update Management to confirm the settings match the OS automatic update behavior you want

[2] Related Links:

The following blogs posts were extremely helpful with the steps required to setup Pi-Hole in Azure and modifying some Pi-Hole settings to work for most home needs.

Sky-Hole Revisited [Pi-Hole in a cloud VM for easy DNS-based ad-blocking]

A New PiHole in the Sky

Network-wide blocking of Ads, tracking cookies and popups