Recover ubuntu box from hack, part 7: set up dynamic dns service updater

So for me to be able to find this server from anywhere on the Internet, I need to have a way of knowing my IP address. Since our internet connection has Dynamic IP, I need to use a Dynamic DNS service, such as http://www.dyndns.org

Now most half decent routers have a way of updating the DDNS service automatically when our IP changes, and ours does. However when I put in the settings and click save, it says its successful and working but the settings are gone and in previous tests, it doesn’t actually do anything.

So I need set up software on the server to update the DDNS service. A package in the repos does just that: ddclient. This is really straightforward to set up:

sudo aptitude install ddclient

then go through and answer the questions as asked and it will sit there on the computer and periodically make sure the IP is up to date on the DDNS service. Only I managed to press the space bar to select the domain name I wanted to have updated, and the only way to remedy this is to skip to the end of the configuration, and run

sudo dpkg-reconfigure ddclient

to start the questions over. This time it worked. I can’t really be bothered testing this, it’s not that important anyway. I’ll just wait till it doesn’t work.

The downside of this software set up as opposed to using the router though is that if the server is off and our IP changes, I won’t be able to remotely turn the server on with a magic packet sent to our IP. Hopefully this isn’t a big issue as I plan to just leave the server on all the time.

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