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Comment: Don't lose focus... (Score 1) 681

by stmok (#29330419) Attached to: Microsoft Attacks Linux With Retail-Training Talking Points
Every time I read about what Microsoft really does...It angers me. (As I'm sure it does for some of you).

...But then, I step back and I recall the wise words of another:

"The most important thing the hacker community does is write better code. Our deeds are the best propaganda we have. Most of us, most of the time, shouldn't be distracted by worrying about beating Microsoft's PR or countering their political moves, because writing good code is in the long run a far more potent weapon than flackery."
-Eric S. Raymond

Comment: You don't need AV (Score 1) 459

by stmok (#28579883) Attached to: Symantec Exec Warns Against Relying On Free Antivirus
When I used Windows XP Pro (I now use CentOS and Debian), I set the system up such that I didn't need AV...I basically applied what I learned from Linux.

That is...
(1) Set up a Limited User Account (LUA)
(2) Software Restriction Policy (OR if you're using XP Home; use => instead)
(3) Install only the apps you need.
(4) Online Armor Free Edition. (Software Firewall with It warns you something is trying to execute or "dial out", and gives you the option to stop it.)
(5) Removed or disabled Services, etc you know you'll never use.

Of course, the "Cons" to this approach is that XP isn't forgiving when it comes to using LUA...So you have to use something like SuRUN to allow certain apps to run with Admin privileges. A little testing is required before putting it into "production use".

Complement the above with "security aware" computing habits, and you're largely fine. (I used AutoPatcher to pull down updates).

I set this approach up for my dad's XP box and spent a few hours with him on correcting his poor computing habits. This was in early 2008. Its been a year. No infection or complaints from him. He can still use his PC, but he's now much better off than most people.

I don't trust AV implementations for 3 reasons:
(1) AV companies use FUD because most people are ignorant on computer security matters.
(2) AV apps are cures to a problem, not prevention. As long as people continue with cures, AV companies remain profitable.
(3) They have been proven unreliable in the real world. (You are reacting to threats! You are already at a tactical disadvantage!)

Comment: Re:Getting Firefox? (Score 1) 578

by stmok (#28308213) Attached to: Microsoft Will Ship Windows 7 in Europe With IE Unbundled

Yes, companies consist of people.

And its also the very people that decide to be complete pricks in order to maintain dominance and control. Control means profit.

Tell me, when does one have a choice when the majority of the easily purchasable systems out there are bundled with Windows?

Why do I have to pay for a Windows license when I'm not going to need or use one?

You talk of choices, but reality says otherwise.

1 Angstrom: measure of computer anxiety = 1000 nail-bytes