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Comment Re:Hash Collisions (Score 1) 386

Which might make for some interesting theoretical attacks -- if I can craft a block with the same hash as a block I'm interested in, I can read the contents of the other block.

// Assume that an information-leak bug that allows the attacker to read the hash values and other metadata necessary, which is entirely possible.

Comment Re:Palm has retired the OS (Score 1) 290

Then your company would likely frown on you working around that by indirectly syncing the personal machine as well. The technical measures in place that prevent you from connecting your laptop to Exchange are merely a way of enforcing policy. You're still violating the policy even if it doesn't stop you.

I don't give a shit, but I bet your company would.

Comment Re:Stay classy (Score 1) 290

I mostly agree with you, but ADB made it all the way from the Apple IIgs [1986] and IIc+ (6502/65816 CPU with Apple II OS), Mac SE (68000, System 5 or later), up through the beige PowerMac G3 [1998]. That's about a 12 year run. Even beyond that, it apparently was still used for internal keyboards on laptops until the Intel switch.

Comment Re:A REALLY bad place to ask for appreciation (Score 1) 232

If you think we *want* to be stuck on IE 6, we don't. We don't really care. However, the developers wrote some asinine ActiveX shit that doesn't work on IE 7 or IE 8, and sure as fuck don't work on Firefox. Or, we're using PeopleSoft software that isn't certified on anything about IE 6, etc.

For XP? Well, by the time Vista was working well enough with the internal apps to roll out, Windows 7 was in beta. Why the hell would I go through upgrading everything to Vista just to have the same people turn around and want Windows 7 next week, but we can't afford to have any departments down for a day to reimage.

It comes down to the golden rule of the sysadmin -- if it's working, don't fuck with it.

Comment Re:hey guys, no more sysadmin bashing ... (Score 1) 232

I've dealt with enough developers that I'd say about 1/2 to 2/3 were competent, and some of those, while competent developers, didn't have anywhere near enough knowledge to be allowed to administer their own machine.

Of course, I'd probably say the same about 1/2 of the sysadmins I've worked with as well, and very few sysadmins have the knowledge to be competent developers. The higher percentage of incompetent sysadmins stems from not understanding security, or not understanding how to balance security with usability.

Note my use of the word knowledge -- most developers could be competent sysadmins, but don't have the knowledge base. If you're developing database-driven web applications using .NET, how likely are you to need to know details of filesystem ACLs, or how a rootkit may insert itself in to a OS kernel? How many sysadmins are going to know how to write (or even use) a database stored procedure, and more importantly, /when it's appropriate to do so?/

Unfortunately, most people don't have the wisdom to understand where their own knowledge ends. I understand quite a bit about a lot of topics, but I'm willing to let an expert (doctor, dentist, mechanic, athletic trainer, etc.) do their jobs. Why don't people have the same attitude about sysadmins? (Hint: I think it's because when you fuck up your car, you pay to fix it. If you fuck up your PC there's no direct financial penalty for you personally.)

Comment Re:Maybe we could couple it with Guy Fawkes day (Score 1) 232

It's not "one minute out of work."

You're focused on a large, complex problem. Someone interrupts you, and you have to go deal with them. When you get back to the large, complex problem, you lose a lot of time figuring out where you were and picking up the pieces of the troubleshooting.

That's not even factoring in that your co-worker called the help desk, someone there had a write a ticket, send it to a deskside support person, who had to leave their desk, come down, and do the "one minute" fix. Total time? Probably more like 30 minutes where your co-worker wasn't working.

I agree with one of the other posters -- I would have had *your* ass. Sending an email to the entire company to apologize to the tech? That's a cannon to kill a gnat -- but don't forget that you're the gnat, asshole.

Comment Re:Maybe we could couple it with Guy Fawkes day (Score 1) 232

If you really think the sysadmin is making the decision to block flickr, I (hope and expect) you're wrong. Generally, it's some asshole who's spending his day looking up nudists on flickr, someone else sees the monitor and complains, and because the asshole is the manager's nephew/golf buddy, the problem is that flickr.com was allowed -- tell the sysadmins to block it.

Even without that contrived scenario, if they're using a third-party service for the filter, like websense, you block a category -- porn, blogs, social networking, sports, gambling, etc. Because flickr has plenty of NSFW images, filters may include it in the porn category, as well as social networking (comments, friends, etc.)

If the filter is blocking it by default, in a non-work-related category (porn), how will you justify *un*blocking it?

-30-

Google

Submission + - USC Deploys Google Apps For Students

apok04 writes: A new partnership between USC and Google will bring convenience and new opportunities for online collaboration to USC students. The tools provided to students include Gmail (2 GB), integrated chat and applications for calendaring and document and spreadsheet production. The program is called Google Apps For Education, and is hosted by Google.

Is Google making a play for an environment traditionally controlled by Microsoft? Maybe. Are there privacy concerns since the service is being controlled by an outside organization? Of course.

But as a USC grad student in engineering (among the first to try these out), I must say I am glad to have platform-independent collaboration tools for use in my group projects.
Security

Submission + - OpenSource Ethernet Sniffing Project Abandoned

mikeeusa2 writes: The free/opensource switched ethernet lan sniffer, Ettercap, had been confirmed abandoned by one of it's programmers:

From The developer "NaGA" Subject: Re: LibNet nolonger works well with ettercap, many users (All?) hit into this error due to newer libnet installations. Date: Tue, 25 Sep 2007 09:43:02 +0200 (CEST) Ettercap support has been dropped 2 years ago. Sorry, but there won't be any change for this. If someone finds a solution for this by his own, we will pleased to add the patch on the website for download.

A fork is needed to continue this useful project.
Power

Submission + - Fault line found under Yucca Mountain

ApharmdB writes: The plan for a spent nuclear fuel repository at Yucca mountain has been thrown for a loop. The believed known location of a nearby fault line was wrong and it has now been found to run directly under a storage pad in the planned facility. The state of Nevada has long opposed the project on geologic instability grounds (no pun intended), so what will this mean for the future of the facility?

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