Promising Software

January 31, 2005

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Here's a trio of promising looking software.. I haven't test drove them yet, but they look like they have potential.

Open Computers and Softwares Inventory: "Open Computers and Softwares Inventory is an application designed to help a network administrator keep track of the computers configuration and the number of copies of software that are installed on the network."

WarLinux: "A new linux distribution for Wardrivers. It is available on disk and bootable CD. It's main intended use is for systems administrators that want to audit and evaluate thier wireless network installations. Should be handy for wardriving also."

SourceForge.net: Project Info - SNARE - Auditing and EventLog Management: "SNARE (System iNtrusion Analysis and Reporting Environment) is a series of log collection agents that facilitate centralised analysis of audit log data. Agents are available for Linux, Windows, Solaris, IIS, Lotus Notes, Irix, AIX, ISA/IIS + more"

Wireless LAN Security Site

January 30, 2005

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Wireless LAN Security Site: "Lots of people are interested in wireless LAN security nowadays. Given that level of interest, there's a need for accurate information on how the current standards work, what's wrong with them, and the current thinking on how to fix the problems. This page tries to gather relevant papers and standards in a single place. " - A TON of Wireless links and information

Wireless LAN Security & Wardriving (802.11): Wardriving Tools & Utilities (War Driving Software) - Wardrive.net's list of (numerous) wardriving tools. Also contains tons of information on antennas how-tos, wardriving books, etc...

If anyone has any more good wireless security resources, please feel free to share.

Configure Windows XP to Automatically Login

January 28, 2005

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Configure Windows XP to Automatically Login: "Click Start, Run and type CONTROL USERPASSWORDS2, and click Ok.
Uncheck 'Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer' option, and click Ok."

Learn something new each day. With W2K, this was the users applet in the Control Panel, but they had to mess it all up to make XP look "pretty".

Keep your activation status intact when reinstalling XP

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Keep your activation status intact when reinstalling XP - "Learn how you can reformat your hard disk and reinstall Windows XP on a system without messing around with Microsoft's Product Activation after the reinstall. "

Great little hint to keep you from having to call India (Microsoft's support) every time you have to reload a box. Please note that this may not work on machines w/ different hardware (especially different network cards).

Geeks in Management?

January 26, 2005

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Slashdot | Geeks in Management? - An open question to the Slashdot crowd asking for tips and hints for geeks who are shoved into a management role (read: me).

I've only gotten a part of the way down the forums and I've found some great pointers. Worth a look if you're in a management position or will persue a management position in the future.

SS64.com

January 25, 2005

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SS64.com - A guide to Oracle, Windows, Linux and OS X commands.

A handly little guide. Also contains guides to Syntax for each system and has a special guide for WSH.

Log Parser 2.2 Released

January 20, 2005

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Download details: Log Parser 2.2: "Log parser is a powerful, versatile tool that provides universal query access to text-based data such as log files, XML files and CSV files, as well as key data sources on the Windows operating system such as the Event Log, the Registry, the file system, and Active Directory. You tell Log Parser what information you need and how you want it processed. The results of your query can be custom-formatted in text based output, or they can be persisted to more specialty targets like SQL, SYSLOG, or a chart. "

Scriptomatic 2.0 Released

January 14, 2005

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Download details: Scriptomatic 2.0: "A completely new version of the famous Scriptomatic, the utility that writes WMI scripts for you. (And, in the process, teaches you the fundamental concepts behind writing WMI scripts for yourself.) Unlike its predecessor, Scriptomatic 2.0 isn�t limited to writing just VBScript scripts; instead, Scriptomatic 2.0 can write scripts in Perl, Python, or JScript as well. In addition, Scriptomatic 2.0 gives you a host of new output formats to use when running scripts, including saving data as plain-text, as a stand-alone Web page, or even as XML. Scriptomatic 2.0 handles arrays, it converts dates to a more readable format, and it works with all the WMI classes on your computer; on top of all that, it also writes scripts that can be run against multiple machines."

RSS Popper

January 12, 2005

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RSS Popper - RSS aggregator for Outlook - "RSS Popper is an RSS/ATOM/RDF news aggregator that delivers news to Outlook. It allows the leveraging of Outlook powerful functionality for reading news feeds."

I've been using Beaver RSS reader for quite a while now, but it does have a few shortcomings (although it is still a great program). Some of those shortcomings include: lack of atom support (this blog uses atom as well as gmail), the inability to delete feeds (which, after a while, causes the program to slow down), occasional .net errors, and the lack of authenticated feeds.

What I do like about RSS Popper is the fact it is free, ties into Outlook, atom feeds, support for feed authentication, the ability to delete messages, and the ability to forward messages (like an email). So far I'm fairly pleased.

If anyone has any other FREE RSS readers that are worth a look, please let me know.

NOTE: Take a look at my Wednesday, October 22, 2003 and my Wednesday, January 21, 2004 postings for IT related feeds.

20 Year Archive on Google Groups

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20 Year Archive on Google Groups: "Google has fully integrated the past 20 years of Usenet archives into Google Groups, which now offers access to more than 800 million messages dating back to 1981. This is by far the most complete collection of Usenet articles ever assembled and a fascinating first-hand historical account. "

This is awesome. I've always loved Google ever since I dropped Webcrawler (search engine back in the day) for them. This Usenet history timeline makes for some very interesting reading.

Black Tuesday

January 11, 2005

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Microsoft Security Bulletin MS05-001 - Vulnerability in HTML Help Could Allow Code Execution (890175) - Critical
Microsoft Security Bulletin MS05-002 - Vulnerability in Cursor and Icon Format Handling Could Allow Remote Code Execution (891711) - Critical
Microsoft Security Bulletin MS05-003: - Vulnerability in the Indexing Service Could Allow Remote Code Execution (871250) - Important

It's sorta funny when an icon or cursor can get your system compromised. Not only that, but how many times does Microsoft have to patch HTML help? Nothing like MS03-026 (blaster) this month but still annoying nonetheless. I just hope that they learn how to code w/o all of the unchecked buffers before they release Longhorn.

True Stories of Knoppix Rescues

January 10, 2005

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LinuxDevCenter.com: True Stories of Knoppix Rescues: "As a battle-hardened sysadmin, I've seen a lot of broken systems (some I broke, and some were broken for me). I've carried a number of rescue disks, including tomsrtbt and the LinuxCare Bootable Business Card, but over the past year or two, I've started to rely completely on Knoppix as an all-in-one rescue disk. Below are some real-life accounts of how I've saved some broken systems with just my Knoppix CD."

Great article promoting the greatness that is Knoppix. Also try Knoppix STD (Security Tools Distribution).

Microsoft releases antispyware, malware-removal tools

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Microsoft releases antispyware, malware-removal tools - Computerworld: "JANUARY 06, 2005 (COMPUTERWORLD) - Microsoft Corp.'s introduction today of two free security tools designed to help users get rid of spyware and other malicious code is a long-overdue move from a company whose software is the biggest target of attacks on the Internet, users and analysts said."

Microsoft Windows AntiSpyware (Beta) Home - MS Official Beta page

Neowin.net - Where unprofessional journalism looks better - Exclusive: Microsoft Anti-Spyware Beta Due 6th January - Comments and screenshots from Neowin.

I'm not sure what to think about MS entering yet another market. It's perfectly normal to feel a little unsure and worried about another product integrating itself into my OS, but they did a fairly decent job with Service Pack 2's (for XP) firewall. Also, who better to indentify unwanted changes in the OS than the people who built the OS? We'll see. They would do really well to make sure that it can be easily managed in the Corporate environment. Since I'm far too busy to play with this new addition right now, if anyone has any comments about MS AntiSpyware, please let me know.

IE flaw threat hits the roof

January 07, 2005

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IE flaw threat hits the roof | CNET News.com: "Secunia said Friday it has raised its rating of the vulnerabilities in Microsoft's browser to 'extremely critical,' its highest rating. The flaws, which affect IE 6, could enable attackers to place and execute programs such as spyware and pornography dialers on victims' computers without their knowledge, said Thomas Kristensen, Secunia's chief technology officer. "

"In order for us to rate a vulnerability as extremely critical, there has to be a working exploit out there and one that doesn't require user interaction," Kristensen said. "This is our highest rating and is the last warning for users to fix their systems."

Nice.

Network/System Administrator To-Do List

January 05, 2005

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Santeria Systems - Network/System Administrator To-Do List - "As a network or system administrator, unless you are working on a specific project, your work is... well, let's face it... mundane. That is not to say it is not important. In fact, your mundane routine is vital to well running systems and equipment. This is in-turn vital to the company bottom line."

Not the most complete list, but he's refining it now. Good reference.