Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

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John connor
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Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by John connor » Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:53 am

When you click an IP address for a user you get a pretty mundane result of the IP address. And it seems IPv6 addresses don't show anything at all! I know Xenforo uses http://whatismyipaddress.com/ and I think it would be a great addition to phpBB. The website has a fairly accurate IP geo location, shows the ASN as well as the ISP.

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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by david63 » Mon Sep 11, 2017 9:15 am

I hope that it is more accurate in the US that it is in the UK - it has my IP address as being over 70 miles away!

There are many more accurate lookup sites than that one.
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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by warmweer » Tue Jan 02, 2018 11:21 pm

Nope, geolocation is almost always based on user-input (provider are not allowed to divulge that info in some countries) and apart from being purposely wrong many times, they are outdated.
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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by 3Di » Mon Oct 22, 2018 3:24 pm

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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by John connor » Tue May 28, 2019 6:51 am

This is just one reason why I'd like to see this system changed to at least that link I mentioned in my opening post. When it works it's not very informative, then sometimes it doesn't even work.
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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Tue May 28, 2019 7:02 am

in all the years I have been doing this, I have never had an IP lookup get closer than about 50 miles from me.
I just now checked whatismyip and it shows as being in dallas tx. which is around 200 miles north of where I am.


I really don't understand why any body pays any attention to IP addresses as far as thinking they can locate anyone at any time.


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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by John connor » Tue May 28, 2019 12:35 pm

I don't care about location. Where did I mention that? I do care about the ISP and to make sure it isn't cloud, etc since I block a good majority of that at the ASN level.

Fact of the matter is that the current way that this is implemented sucks. Whether it has better geo look up or not. I don't care.

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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by thecoalman » Tue May 28, 2019 1:53 pm

John connor wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 6:51 am
then sometimes it doesn't even work.
It doesn't work because you have exceeded the limit numerous times. That is not the fault of phpBB but some other software you are using sending too many queries.

https://www.ripe.net/manage-ips-and-asn ... tation/aup
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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by EA117 » Tue May 28, 2019 2:01 pm

The current phpBB display (user_ipwhois()) is using the legacy whois interface into actual assigned numbers registry; always querying ARIN initially and then following referrals to RIPE, APNIC, AFRINIC, etc., based on ARIN's response. As such I'd say "this isn't geolocation at all", and is simply "who is the IP address / ASN assigned to", which is all any registry knows.

e.g. The address range registered to "MCI dba Verizon Wireless" headquarters in Reston, Virginia may be one they're using for services in the midwest, etc. This is a "who pays the bills" query and not really a "where are they" unless those two just happen to coincide.

I didn't know what RIPE's query limit is on the whois interface, but as thecoalman said, I'm sure you saw that was the issue cited in the "doesn't work" screen shot. That some number of queries per minute / hour / day had been exceeded. That would be "from the IP address of your phpBB server", since that's who is issuing the query in this case, and not the IP of your web browser that was requesting/viewing the information.

There are other modern RESTful ways to query the registries, but that's not going to change the level of information. The registry only knows what the registry knows. The more modern interface just gives us a way to format the information and pick & choose which information to display easily, versus getting the 1960's terminal screen scrape of whois info.

Although an extension could certainly replace/update the links generated for further querying IP address information in a style-independent manner, this appears to be something that could also be easily implemented even as a style-only change, too. At least if a "free" service was being used, which didn't require disclosing a paid API key or similar, since the actual querying would be done by the client-side browser.

e.g. You could easily change your style to render http://whatismyipaddress.com/-based links for your moderator info page, without waiting for phpBB to adopt any change.

I'm on the fence as to whether phpBB really "should" change, since it makes sense that "the registries are the only official and free source of information." They could definitely switch (or allow) a third-party service based on more robust REST APIs and JSON data responses, but making all the phpBB installations in the world suddenly start hitting the free service levels of a third-party sounds like something that wouldn't last.

e.g. I'm using https://ipinfo.io/ where you could request a visual web page like http://ipinfo.io/8.8.8.8, or a "just the facts" JSON response like http://ipinfo.io/8.8.8.8/json to manipulate as you see fit. https://ipinfo.io/ happens to have a 1000 queries/day limit before you have to start paying them, and also some more detailed levels of data that can't be queried at all without paid service levels.

But there are certainly many paid services with free levels of service out there to choose from. Again, the issue with making phpBB use one of them is not only would we be arbitrarily singling out a third-party, every phpBB installation in the world would then start hitting them. Just not sure how friendly that would seem, or that we wouldn't "spoil it for everyone" by causing the free service levels to be reduced, etc. phpBB's service ability would die if the third-party went out of business, simply changed their service policies, etc.

So while the data level is "meh" for querying the registries (ARIN/RIPE/etc.) as phpBB currently does, that is "the official information about the assigned IP address range", and is the information that by definition everyone on the Internet is supposed to have access to.

Maybe a new ACP configuration option allowing an optional alternative template such as "IP Address Information: http://my.arbitrary.preferred.web.service/?q={IPAddress}" for how the links should be rendered. Such that it could be used by those who would like to easily employ a different service, without phpBB making any choice for them / for everyone. And such that it could also be easily done without requiring an extension or style-based support, in the way it must be achieved today.

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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by John connor » Tue May 28, 2019 10:02 pm

thecoalman wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 1:53 pm
John connor wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 6:51 am
then sometimes it doesn't even work.
It doesn't work because you have exceeded the limit numerous times. That is not the fault of phpBB but some other software you are using sending too many queries.

https://www.ripe.net/manage-ips-and-asn ... tation/aup
I don't even hardly use the damn thing, and the IP it said was banned was from the shared server or something. It wasn't even mine!

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Re: Use whatismyipaddess instead of default

Post by John connor » Tue May 28, 2019 10:09 pm

EA117 wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 2:01 pm
The current phpBB display (user_ipwhois()) is using the legacy whois interface into actual assigned numbers registry; always querying ARIN initially and then following referrals to RIPE, APNIC, AFRINIC, etc., based on ARIN's response. As such I'd say "this isn't geolocation at all", and is simply "who is the IP address / ASN assigned to", which is all any registry knows.

e.g. The address range registered to "MCI dba Verizon Wireless" headquarters in Reston, Virginia may be one they're using for services in the midwest, etc. This is a "who pays the bills" query and not really a "where are they" unless those two just happen to coincide.

I didn't know what RIPE's query limit is on the whois interface, but as thecoalman said, I'm sure you saw that was the issue cited in the "doesn't work" screen shot. That some number of queries per minute / hour / day had been exceeded. That would be "from the IP address of your phpBB server", since that's who is issuing the query in this case, and not the IP of your web browser that was requesting/viewing the information.

There are other modern RESTful ways to query the registries, but that's not going to change the level of information. The registry only knows what the registry knows. The more modern interface just gives us a way to format the information and pick & choose which information to display easily, versus getting the 1960's terminal screen scrape of whois info.

Although an extension could certainly replace/update the links generated for further querying IP address information in a style-independent manner, this appears to be something that could also be easily implemented even as a style-only change, too. At least if a "free" service was being used, which didn't require disclosing a paid API key or similar, since the actual querying would be done by the client-side browser.

e.g. You could easily change your style to render http://whatismyipaddress.com/-based links for your moderator info page, without waiting for phpBB to adopt any change.

I'm on the fence as to whether phpBB really "should" change, since it makes sense that "the registries are the only official and free source of information." They could definitely switch (or allow) a third-party service based on more robust REST APIs and JSON data responses, but making all the phpBB installations in the world suddenly start hitting the free service levels of a third-party sounds like something that wouldn't last.

e.g. I'm using https://ipinfo.io/ where you could request a visual web page like http://ipinfo.io/8.8.8.8, or a "just the facts" JSON response like http://ipinfo.io/8.8.8.8/json to manipulate as you see fit. https://ipinfo.io/ happens to have a 1000 queries/day limit before you have to start paying them, and also some more detailed levels of data that can't be queried at all without paid service levels.

But there are certainly many paid services with free levels of service out there to choose from. Again, the issue with making phpBB use one of them is not only would we be arbitrarily singling out a third-party, every phpBB installation in the world would then start hitting them. Just not sure how friendly that would seem, or that we wouldn't "spoil it for everyone" by causing the free service levels to be reduced, etc. phpBB's service ability would die if the third-party went out of business, simply changed their service policies, etc.

So while the data level is "meh" for querying the registries (ARIN/RIPE/etc.) as phpBB currently does, that is "the official information about the assigned IP address range", and is the information that by definition everyone on the Internet is supposed to have access to.

Maybe a new ACP configuration option allowing an optional alternative template such as "IP Address Information: http://my.arbitrary.preferred.web.service/?q={IPAddress}" for how the links should be rendered. Such that it could be used by those who would like to easily employ a different service, without phpBB making any choice for them / for everyone. And such that it could also be easily done without requiring an extension or style-based support, in the way it must be achieved today.

That does make sense because you don't want too overload a server with all the phpBB installations out there. On the other hand, Sometimes I'm blocked just trying to fetch the IP page that is currently used just so that I can copy the entire IPv6 address to paste at whatsmyip.

Perhaps an ability to use other services could be an option in the core along with the ability to add an API key where needed. By in large, the current way this is done seems archaic.

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