SSH data diet service (slim down phone data usage)

I was reading this article about website obesity and got inspired:

Much money you spend per page load on a cell phone network is based on the bandwidth used.
For example, it costs thirty cents to load a page from on a typical data plan.
We’re in a stupid situation where ads make huge profits for data carriers and ad networks, at the expense of everyone else.

Removing ads, beacon, tracker and sharing buttons can drastically reduce the size of a website from 12 megabytes to 1 megabytes. So if all my phone data goes via my router where all the non-essential bloat, crap, surveillance is filtered out. This means I can get a cheaper data plan from my mobile carrier and speed up the responsiveness and user experience on my phone.

@Tux, where do you live? In Germany I wouldn’t care about such things because the providers are offering good enough conditions for sufficient “flatrates” (for example: 3GB fast speed and afterwards it’s terrible slow).


@M4x, It is not so much where I live but where I go. (I travel a lot.)
I am just wondering how many others would be interested.

Have a look at pi-hole. Build for the Raspberry Pi but it is only dnsmasq + scripts. Will need some modifications but should work.

But why on your home router? My current config is a bit like this albeit with strongswan on a server and only for accessing my computers using hostnames and using VoIP. Nice effect is i get IP mobility for free. No more disconnects when my phone switches between UMTS/HSPA and LTE or even Wifi.

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@Tux a okay :relaxed:


@adminX Thanks for pointing out pi-hole and strongswan. I love my Pi and will try it out just for the fun of it, but if I understand correctly it only works within local Lan. For strongswan I need to do some reading on the subject.

The beauty of tunneling a SSH connection from my phone to a running service at the home router, no mater in what hotel I am:

  • I greatly cut cost when using 4G roaming data.
  • Speed up slow free airport WIFI
  • No longer issues whit blocked content like YouTube when using hotel WIFI (France)
  • Only one device that does it all

pi-hole uses dnsmasq as DNS service and a quite big list of hosts it simply overrides. Modifying its scripts to give its hostlist to the turris dns server should work. I don’t know if it will use dnsmasq by default or if they use unbound or something else. But the current version of dnsmasq is capable of DNSSEC and small so i would bet on this.

Strongswan is a IPsec implementation. But it does not matter if you use an IPsec implementation, OpenVPN, SSH or even TINC. Any kind of VPN will do.

What kind of SSH-tunnel do you use? Socks, tun (point-to-point), tun (ethernet) ?

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My router is running DD-WRT with DNSmasq, I downloaded some of the pi-hole host list, configured DNSmasq and OpenVPN, now I have a pi-hole equivalent. Probably I will add a cron job to keep the list updated.

It should easy to implement in Turris, maybe the new dev community can change the pi-hole script or create an easy guide.

I am not using any VPN or SSH tunnel connection at the moment.
But I am in the process of doing some research in maybe start doing so.
I was considering SSH socks.

I learn a lot new possibilities, thank you for the feedback.