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Comment: a five minute deadline to write, test and deploy (Score 1) 310

A Solaris sys-admin on my team deleted '/bin/ldd' from the department server and found that he could not issue any more commands. Other processes on the server began to hang when they needed to load libraries.

He was in panic mode and planning to take down the server to boot from the installation CD in order to fix it. That would have resulted in a few hundred people unable to work for a while. I had the idea of writing a quick program on another workstation and copying that to an NFS share that was mounted by that server. The program would copy 'ldd' from another disk to '/bin/ldd' but the catch was that it could not load any system libraries, it had to be static linked with the correct version of each library it required. The bigger catch was that I had a deadline of under 5 minutes to get it working.

It worked :-)

Comment: concentrate on what she needs (Score 5, Insightful) 552

by ei4anb (#47074677) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Communication With Locked-in Syndrome Patient?
You probably know this already. For the moment you should concentrate on telling her that everyone is ok and she needs to rest. Talk to her, tell her not to try to respond and not to be frustrated. Don't ask questions as that will make her more frustrated. Keep her in the conversation without expecting her to answer.

Comment: Hands on compiling in 1972 (Score 1) 230

by ei4anb (#46883429) Attached to: One-a-Day-Compiles: Good Enough For Government Work In 1983
I had only just last week found one of the first programs that I wrote in 1972. We were lucky that our engineering school had a reconditioned IBM1800 with only a small cadre of us who knew how to use it so we got plenty of hands-on machine time in the late evenings when the official jobs had finished. You can see a printout of it on http://2eo.blogspot.ie/2014/04...

Comment: Thst's 14 year old news (Score 4, Informative) 122

by ei4anb (#45689007) Attached to: NSA Able To Crack A5/1 Cellphone Crypto
It has been common knowledge for at least 14 years that governments could eavesdrop on A5/1 traffic http://cryptome.org/gsm-joke.htm

Many governments have warned industrialists not to discuss secrets when using a mobile phone near the country borders. Only the radio channels are encrypted in GSM, lawful interception happens on the wired network that interconnects the base stations so eavesdropping on A5/1 is mostly used when lawful interception is not an option, e.g. listening to the GSM traffic of other countries.

Handhelds

Omate TrueSmart Watch Stands Alone — No Phone Required 167

Posted by timothy
from the dick-tracey-james-bond-or-maxwell-smart dept.
jarold writes to point out an intriguing entry in the expanding smart-watch field: the Omate TrueSmart watch. Production of samples is about start on the watch after a successful Kickstarter campaign. Unlike some of the smart watches now out (or promised for soon), the TrueSmart is capable of making voice calls, sending texts, and using social media messaging without a separate smartphone or tablet. The specs are impressive, for something you wear on your wrist: Android 4.2.2 running on a dual core Cortex A7 and half a gig of RAM, 4GB of storage (expandable via micro-SD slot).

Comment: How to clone a chip card (Score 1) 236

by ei4anb (#43543823) Attached to: Smartphone Used To Scan Data From Chip-Enabled Credit Cards

I have worked in information security for 25 years and am always amused when people say something is "physically impossible". There is almost always a way. I have worked on forensic engineering for chip manufacturers, finding production faults by etching off layers using warm nitric acid and reading the secrets out of the circuit using a microscope. That technique can be used to make many copies of a card but nobody bothers because it's too time expensive and there are easier ways.

Ross Anderson's group in Cambridge are real experts in the chip and pin technology, they know that security implementation flaws often make cards vulnerable, for example see http://www.lightbluetouchpaper.org/2012/09/10/chip-and-skim-cloning-emv-cards-with-the-pre-play-attack/

Many parts of the world still use only the magnetic strip. For years while Europe waited for the US to deploy chip and pin we saw European CC numbers being used in the US. Now NFC will make it easier for US based cloners to get just enough data from your cards to send to their cousins in other countries.

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