Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Connecting With SSH

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on using the Pi-hole; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

With the Raspberry Pi configured to allow remote access using SSH, we can connect to it using an SSH on any other machine. Windows 10 has the SSH client enabled by default from the April 2018 Update (Windows version 1803).

To access the Raspberry Pi, you need the username and IP address for your IP:

Connecting to Pi using SSH

The default username for a Raspberry Pi is pi; use the following command to access the Pi (replacing the highlighted section with your PI’s IP address:

ssh pi@{ipaddress}

If you’re connecting using SSH for the first time, you may be prompted to continue connecting; type yes and hit return.

Enter the pi user’s password; you’ll be taken to the command prompt of the Raspberry Pi.

Adventures With A Raspberry Pi

Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Change DNS Servers

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on using the Pi-hole; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

As with a number of the other items shown in this series, the DNS Servers are selected during installation, but can be changed in the admin interface. To change the DNS Servers, log into the admin interface, select Settings and click on the DNS tab; you can change to one of the default DNS servers in the list or you can enter custom DNS servers:

Settings - DNS tab

Adventures With A Raspberry Pi

Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Maintain Blocklists

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on using the Pi-hole; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

While the blocklists used by your Pi-hole will be the ones you selected during the initial install and configuration, they can be changed. This is done via the Pi-hole admin interface.

In the left pane, select Settings and click on the Blocklists tab.

Click te red trash can icon to delete a list; enter the name of a new list in the text field at the bottom and then click Save. When you’ve made all the changes required, click Save and Update:

Blocklists used to generate Pi-hole's Gravity

Your changes will be saved and the blocklists updated.

Adventures With A Raspberry Pi

Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Update Blocklists

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on using the Pi-hole; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

When the Pi-hole is installed, you have the option to select which blocklists should be used. The blocklists will be downloaded at that point, but need to be kept up-to-date. Fortunately, there is a cron job which runs automatically once a week and updates these blocklists.

If you want to run a manua update of the blocklists, log into the Pi-hole admin interface and select Tools and then click Update Gravity; when the page loads, click Update:

Update Gravity (list of blocked domains)

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Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Whitelisting a Site

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on using the Pi-hole; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

When using a Pi-hole to block adverts, you will come across sites which you want to access, but which are being blocked. The message you will see is not readily apparent that the site has been blocked by the Pi-hole:

Site blocked by Pi-hole

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Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Disabling Pi-hole

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on using the Pi-hole; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

While the Pi-hole has worked very well, there are times when I’ve had issues and wondered if it was the Pi-hole causing them. One of the good features of the Pi-hole is that it is very easy to temporarily disable it, which allows you to either easily rule out the Pi-hole as the cause of the problem or confirm that it was responsible.

To temporarily disable the Pi-hole, log into the admin interface and click Disable on the right pane:

Pi-hole disable menu

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Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Admin Interface

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on building my new Raspberry Pi; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

The Pi-hole admin interface is where you maintain your blocklists, whitelists and general settings. You can access it in two ways:

  1. http://[higlight]{ip address of pi-hile}[/highlight]/
  2. http://pi.hole/

When the admin page interface, you will see basic information for the last 24 hours:

Pi-hole admin interface not logged in

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Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Blocked Adverts

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on building my new Raspberry Pi; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

With Pi-hole installed and configured, the main way you will use your Pi-hole is to simply browse the Internet.

With the router directing all DNs queries to the Pi-hole, it will use the loaded block lists to stop adverts from those domains being loaded. I’ve found the experience of surfing the Internet far smooth since I installed the Pi-hole. The amount of data has also noticeably dropped.

I have been white-listing some sites which do not have overly intrusively adverts (no sound, no video or moving images). I’ll cover white-listing later in this series.

Adventures With A Raspberry Pi

Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Series Index

Raspberry PiThis series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi, in which I am going to show how to use the Pi-hole.

If you’re reading this post on azurecurve, this index will automatically update, otherwise you need to check back to the original post.

Adventures With A Raspberry Pi

Using Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi
Disabling Pi-hole
Whitelisting a Site
Update Blocklists
Maintain Blocklists
Change DNS Servers
Connecting With SSH

Installing Pi-hole On A Raspberry Pi: Configure Network to use Pi-hole

Raspberry PiThis post is part of the series on building my new Raspberry Pi; this series is a sub-series of the Adventures with a Raspberry Pi.

With Pi-hole installed and configured, the final step is to change the DNS settings on the router to point to the Pi-hole rather than the old DNS servers. In my case, they were pointing to OpenDNS on the router, so it as a case of changing them to look to the IP address configured on the Pi-hole which is set to use OpenDNS.

Every router is different in how DNS servers are configured; if your router doesn’t allow the DNS servers to be changed, you could change the DNS settings on your computers instead; bear in mind this approach takes far more effort.

Adventures With A Raspberry Pi