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Skype Linux Reads Password and Firefox Profile 335

mrcgran writes "Users of Skype for Linux have just found out that it reads the files /etc/passwd, firefox profile, plugins, addons, etc, and many other unnecessary files in /etc. This fact was originally discovered by using AppArmor, but others have confirmed this fact using strace on versions and What is going on? This probably shows how important it is to use AppArmor in any closed-source application in Linux to restrict any undue access to your files."

Will Internet TV Crash the Internet? 267

Stony Stevenson writes "Analyst groups and Cisco have come out saying that the internet is heading for a crash unless it increases its bandwidth capabilities which are being strangled by the increased use of Web TV. Stan Schatt, research director at ABI said: "Uploading bandwidth is going to have to increase, and the cable providers are going to get killed on bandwidth as HD programming becomes more commonplace." He added that the solution to the problem is to change to digital switching and move to IPTV. "They will be brought kicking and screaming into the 21st century," he said. Cisco weighed into the argument, adding that it had found American video websites currently transmit more data per month than the entire amount of traffic sent over the internet in 2000."
Operating Systems

Fighting Claims That Open Source Is Insecure? 84

Lumpy asks: "Lately there has been a HUGE push by Certified Microsoft Professionals and their companies to call clients and warn them of the dangers of open source. This week I received calls from 4 different customers that they were warned that they are dangerously insecure because they run Open Source Operating systems or Software because 'anyone can read the code and hack you with ease' they are being told. Other colleagues in the area also have noticed this about 3 Microsoft Partners or so they claim have been going out of their way to strike fear of OSS in companies that respond with 'yes we use Open source or Linux' when the sales call comes in. I know this is simply a sales tactic by these companies that will remain nameless, but how do I fix the damage caused by these sales tactics? I have several customers that now want more than my word about the security of the systems that have worked for them flawlessly for over 5-6 years now with minimal expense outside of upgrades and patching for security. Does anyone have a good plan or sources of reliable information that can be used to inform the customer?"

Every Time You Vote Against Net Neutrality, Your ISP Kills a Night Elf 178

Perhaps one of the more overlooked problems that could arise out of a bad Net Neutrality decision is the impact to online gaming. In fact, any interactive communications could stand to take a dive (VOIP, streaming video, etc) with the advent of Net Neutrality legislation. RampRate has an interesting look at the possible fallout and where we are headed. From the article: "What will be murdered with no fallback or replacement is the nascent market of interactive entertainment - particularly online gaming. Companies like Blizzard Entertainment, Electronic Arts, Sony Online Entertainment, and countless others, have built a business on the fundamental assumption of relatively low latency bandwidth being available to large numbers of consumers. Furthermore, a large -- even overwhelming -- portion of the value of these offerings comes from their 'network effects' -- the tendency for the game to become more enjoyable and valuable as larger number of players joins the gaming network."

On Software Patent Lawsuits Against OSS 400

Bruce Perens writes "We've warned you for a decade. Now the monster has finally arrived: patent holders are filing suit against OSS developers." From the article: "We should not be confident that we will continue to have the right to use and develop Open Source software. A coordinated patent attack by a few companies, or even one large company, could completely destroy Open Source in the United States and cripple it in other nations. Funds and patent portfolios that have been established to help defend Open Source would not be sufficient to defend it. Only legislative changes to the patent system can fully protect Open Source and maintain it as a viable source of innovation for our future."

"Necessity is the mother of invention" is a silly proverb. "Necessity is the mother of futile dodges" is much nearer the truth. -- Alfred North Whitehead