I buy a lot of books, while a few of them are purchased on the strength of the authors name alone or through idle browsing i stumble upon a growing number of them via webblogs. Unlike the reviews on sites like Amazon with a blogged review i have a basis on which to decide if the authors views are going to mesh with my own. But, like everything else, there’s a downside. Read on →

My honeymoon period with Mozilla and Firefox has come to an end. Despite the popup blocking, the actual working security settings and the tabbed browsing I’ve discovered needs that Firefox can no longer meet. When i reached this point with IE i began to work on adding the small snippets of functionality i needed, such as the address bar customisations and the IE plugins but i soon reached the limit of what was easy to add to the browser. Read on →

Author: Bill McCarty ISBN: 0764524631 Publisher: redhat press (Wiley) You are in a maze of Linux Firewall books – all alike. Fortunately one stands out from the others for two reasons, the first is obvious, its an official Redhat press book, you expect Redhat books to be pretty accurate. The second, slightly more subtle one, is the authors name; Bill McCarty. Best known for his excellent articles in the American Linux Magazine and his Learning Redhat and Debian books for O’Reilly the stage is set for a good read. Read on →

Webscraping has always been, at best, a flaky way of gathering data and at worst a legal gray area. With premier sites such as Google and Amazon now offering official webservice interfaces to their data, developers can now add both respectability and reliability to their applications and drop the fragile HTML parsing. This change in focus from using these services at the provided front end to wrapping our own services around them takes a while to get your head around but once you ‘get it’ the possibilities become pretty much endless. Read on →

It was a dark and stormy night, in the corner a Postfix server threatened to buckle under the weight of the Sobig.F worm. On a mailing list not quite in a galaxy far far away an argument a discussion about sudo, history files and information disclosure raged. One of the topics that came up was the information you can glean from the process table as people use commands such as Sudo and su instead of running everything as root. Read on →

Author: Rob Flickenger ISBN: 0596004613 Publisher: O’Reilly & Associates The first time i picked this book up to read i never even made it through the first four pages to the preface, the foreword is provided by Eric Raymond and to be completely honest, does no justice to the rest of the book. While ESR focuses on the abstract details of hackers, in pretty much the same way as all his other writing, the meat of the book is pure, hands on solution. Read on →

“Its only running a single service, we’re fully patched and it has a local firewall that denies by default.” “What happens if i do Ctrl-Alt-Delete?” <h3>Introduction</h3> One of the basic premises of computer security is that it's almost impossible to fully secure any machine to which an attacker has physical access. While we cannot cover all eventualities, we can make some simple changes to catch any use of the more blatant avenues of abuse. Read on →

Update: As you can probably tell from the “Last updated on ‘Tue Aug 22 00:04:12 2006’” I’ve not touched this page for a while. I assume these no longer work so I’ve removed links to the executables and the executables themselves. I've been using <acronym title="Internet Explorer">IE</acronym> almost exclusively on Windows since version 4 was released. It beat Netscape hands down and it was actually quite useable. Unfortunately once Netscape was firmly thrashed (Although i did still have to put up with it on Linux.) the IE team seemed to lose its drive and failed to excite with the bland version 5 and the great gaping security hole known as IE6. Read on →

From the projects sourceforge home: “Dave’s Quick Search Deskbar is an add-on for the Windows Desktop Taskbar that lets you launch searches quickly. With dozens of search engines, a calculator, clock, calendar, and more in one little textbox, it’s monster functionality in a flea-sized GUI” What is DQSD? From the projects sourceforge home: “Dave’s Quick Search Deskbar is an add-on for the Windows Desktop Taskbar that lets you launch searches quickly. Read on →

Googlism is an amusing way of wasting ten minutes of time you’d otherwise spend reading your email. A better explanation from the official Googlism site itself is “Googlism.com will find out what Google thinks of you, your friends or anything!“ A bookmarklet is a snippet of code that adds or enhances a web browsers functionality. They live in the same place as your bookmarks and allow easy access to tasks ranging from the trivial (resizing the browser window or turning images off) through to the more complex (running searches with whichever text you have highlighted as the search term or validating the html and links on the current page.) If you use <acronym title="Internet Explorer">IE</acronym> then you’re in luck, for once. Read on →