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Security

Exploit Found to Brick Most HP and Compaq Laptops 294

Ian Lamont writes "A security researcher calling himself porkythepig has published attack code that can supposedly brick most HP and Compaq laptops. The exploit uses an ActiveX control in HP's Software Update. It would 'let an attacker corrupt Windows' kernel files, making the laptop unbootable, or with a little more effort, allow hacks that would result in a PC hijack or malware infection.' The same researcher last week outlined a batch of additional vulnerabilities in HP and Compaq laptops, for which HP later issued patches."
PC Games (Games)

EVE-Online Patch Makes XP Unbootable 572

Nobo writes "CCP's latest major patch to the EVE-Online client, Trinity, comes with an optional DX9-enhanced graphics patch that dramatically improves the visual quality of the in-game graphics through remade models, textures, and HDR. It also has an unfortunate bug: the incredibly stupid choice of boot.ini as a game configuration file, coupled with an errant extra backslash in the installer configuration. The result is that anyone who installs the enhanced graphics patch overwrites the windows XP c:\boot.ini file with the EVE client configuration file, bricking the machine on the next boot. Discussion in a couple of forums threads is becoming understandably heated."
Unix

What's New in OpenBSD 4.2? 203

blackbearnh writes "OpenBSD 4.2 was released today, and has a host of new features. O'Reilly's ONLamp site has a pretty thorough overview of the release. 'Even though security is still there, this release comes with some amazing performance improvements: basic benchmarks showed PF being twice as fast, a rewrite of the TLB shootdown code for i386 and amd64 cut the time to do a full package build by 20 percent (mostly because all the forks in configure scripts have become much cheaper), and the improved frequency scaling on MP systems can help save nearly 20 percent of battery power. And then the new features: FFS2, support for the Advanced Host Controller Interface, IP balancing in CARP, layer 7 manipulation with hoststated, Xenocara, and more!'"
PC Games (Games)

Valve Responds to Steam Territory Deactivations 258

An anonymous reader passed us a link to Shack News, which is reporting on official commentary from Doug Lombardi of Valve about the international Orange Box code problem we talked about yesterday. According to Lombardi, the folks who bought copies of the game from a Thai gaming store are pretty much out of luck. They'll need to buy a local copy to have a working version. That said, they should be able to replace the old code with a new one. "'Some of these users have subsequently purchased a legal copy after realizing the issue and were having difficulty removing the illegitimate keys from their Steam accounts,' added Lombardi. 'Anyone having this problem should contact Steam Support to have the Thai key removed from their Steam account.'"

The Orange Box Review 358

"PC Gaming is dying," the analysts tell us. "The Massive genre is the only viable business model left," websites report. That they're off the mark is obvious to anyone that's actually played a PC game in the last few years; games like Sam and Max , Battlefield 2 , or any of the numerous puzzle titles available online prove the flexibility and strength of the PC platform. Then, every once in a while, you get an offering like the Orange Box. A value-packed storm of content from Valve, this single sku offers five complete games at an amazing price. That would be great, even if the games weren't any good ... but they are. They're very, very, very good. Read on for my impressions of Half-Life 2: Episode 2, Team Fortress 2, and (the cake is a lie) Portal.

Comment Re:Typical (Score 1) 269

'Free Software' is about adding restrictions on distribution, to support a particular ideology; it's got nothing to do with freedom at all.

That is not true. The FSF considers public domain software to be Free Software as well; they don't consider software to be non-Free unless it's (L)GPLd. There are even licences that the FSF considers to be Free, but which aren't GPL compatible - the Apache licence, for instance. See the gnu.org list of licences for more details on individual licences.

Now, you may argue that the GPL is about "adding restrictions on distribution, to support a particular ideology", but the FSF's concept of Free Software certainly is not.

Toys

Nanoglue Could Be Used To Make Spiderman Web-Shooters 114

Stony Stevenson writes "A team of US researchers is using the super-adhesive properties of nanoglue to create a super-sticky web-shooting device much like the comic-book hero Spiderman's. The nanoglue is also being trialed in the production of computer chip circuitry and is expected to miniaturize the process, meaning faster and more powerful chips. From the article: '"If we can find a way to create threads and/or intertwined bundles using the molecules in a scalable fashion, while retaining the adhesive properties, then creating web-shooters similar to Spiderman's is a real possibility," Ramanath said. "There are ways in which molecular threads/bundles can be created in large quantities. The challenge will be, however, to simultaneously engineer adhesion on certain surfaces (and not others, since we want the suit only to form on the desired surface) and also with each other during the thread formation."'"
Censorship

Censoring a Number 1046

Rudd-O writes "Months after successful discovery of the HD-DVD processing key, an unprecedented campaign of censorship, in the form of DMCA takedown notices by the MPAA, has hit the Net. For example Spooky Action at a Distance was killed. More disturbingly, my story got Dugg twice, with the second wave hitting 15,500 votes, and today I found out it had simply disappeared from Digg. How long until the long arm of the MPAA gets to my own site (run in Ecuador) and the rest of them holding the processing key? How long will we let rampant censorship go on, in the name of economic interest?" How long before the magic 16-hex-pairs number shows up in a comment here?
It's funny.  Laugh.

Goatse.cx Is For Sale 211

fm6 writes "The domain goatse.cx is being auctioned. Bidding, at the time of posting, has reached $15K after 109 bids (with 6 days to go). Some of you will recall that this site used to be linked in a lot of Slashdot articles, despite having only a few pages. Boing Boing, with their usual creativity, has managed to depict Goatse's most commonly linked photo while still remaining within the bounds of good taste."
Power

Wireless Power Now A Reality 197

SlashRating©
35
slashdottit! tm
CSMastermind writes "CNN is reporting on a breakthrough technology. A startup called Powercast has developed and patented a device, the size of a dime and costing 5$ to make, which allows power to be transmitted wirelessly. The device has already gained FCC approval and the company has inked deals with the likes of Phillips. From the article: 'Powercast says it has signed nondisclosure agreements to develop products with more than 100 companies, including major manufacturers of cell phones, MP3 players, automotive parts, temperature sensors, hearing aids, and medical implants. The last of those alone could be a multibillion-dollar market: Pacemakers, defibrillators, and the like require surgery to replace dead batteries. But with a built-in Powercast receiver, those batteries could last a lifetime. '"
The Internet

Looking Inside the Second Life Data Centers 103

An anonymous reader writes "InformationWeek looks inside the data centers that power the game Second Life. Tidbits from the article: The software architecture is an extension of the virtual world metaphor of Second Life. At any time, it's possible to walk into one of Second Life's two data centers, pat one of the rack-mounted servers, and say that particular server is running virtual New York, or San Francisco, or ancient Rome, and imagine itty-bitty people and buildings inside the 1U rack-mounted servers. Linden Lab, which develops and maintains Second Life, runs 2,000 Intel- and AMD-based servers in two co-location facilities in San Francisco and Dallas. And, contrary to widespread belief among Second Life users, Linden Lab has not decided whether to open-source the Second Life server software."

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