So I happened across an article the other day which described how to do something that I thought was kind of cool. It walked you through how to create a QR code so that visitors to your house (or business) could simply use the camera in their smart phone to quickly and easily access your guest WiFi network. Yes, it may, be nerdy… But it’s still cool. Here’s how you can do it too!
The greatness of this solution is that scanning the QR code will basically work from any iOS or Android device. However, since I only have Apple mobile devices, I can only show you how easily it is done on an iPhone.
Make the QR code
Get the ‘shortcut’ by clicking this link: https://www.icloud.com/shortcuts/796cd8de4e344ac6a5b6495a8a2fa333
(shortcut originally created by Stephen Robles for AppleInsider).
It will open the ‘Shortcuts’ app on your phone and display all the steps that will happen once you run the shortcut. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the screen and click the red button that is labeled “Add Untrusted Shortcut”. It will now get added to your “My Shortcuts”.
At the bottom of your screen tap on “My Shortcuts”. Run the shortcut called “Generate Wi-Fi QR”.
It will prompt you for a Wi-Fi network/SSID name, and it asks if you want to use the Wi-Fi network you are connected to, or it will let you specify another network and type it in. The next step will prompt you to enter the Wi-Fi password.
Once you hit ‘Done’, it will generate a QR code for you. Tap the icon in the upper right corner to save the QR code as an image.
Display & Connect
You now have an image that looks like this…
Print the image out and post it on your wall at home (or work).
When friends come over they can scan your QR code and connect seamlessly, without you ever having to do anything other than point a finger towards whereever you hang your QR code image.
Ubiquiti makes some interesting gear and they are quite well known for their disrupting the status quo by offering top-notch grade network and wifi devices. Their gear ranges from prosumer to enterprise-grade. Depending on how far down the rabbit hole you go, it can become a bit of an expensive eco-system that you are buying into. On the plus side, if you ever decide to leave any Ubiquiti, it shouldn’t be hard to resell the gear as they have a large community of followers.
I was leaving one job and starting another and decided that it was time to upgrade my home network to allow for some more diverse home-lab options. I decided to jump on the Ubiquiti bandwagon and set-up on their Unifi product line. Being new to Ubiquiti and Unifi I have a lot to learn!
I’m starting off my Unifi environment with a Ubiquiti Dream Machine (UDM), a Unifi 8-port POE switch (US-8-60W), and a Unifi AP (UAP-AC-Lite). I’m starting small. 😂 But who knows how large it’ll grow!
Here are some things I’ve setup in my Unifi environment….
These instructions are straight from the RPi documentation (which can be found here).
If you do not use a monitor or keyboard to run your Pi (known as headless), but you still need to do some wireless setup, there is a facility to enable wireless networking and SSH when creating a image.
Once an image is created on an SD card, by inserting it into a card reader on a Linux or Windows machines the boot folder can be accessed. Adding certain files to this folder will activate certain setup features on the first boot of the Pi itself.
Setting up wireless networking
You will need to define a “wpa_supplicant.conf” file for your particular wireless network. Put this file in the boot folder, and when the Pi first boots, it will copy that file into the correct location in the Linux root file system and use those settings to start up wireless networking.
“wpa_supplicant.conf” file example:
country=<Insert country code here>
ssid="<Name of your WiFi>"
psk="<Password for your WiFi>"
Note that some older WiFi dongles don’t support 5GHz networks.
More information on the “wpa_supplicant.conf” file can be found here. See Wikipedia for a list of country codes.