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Comment Own point of view (Score 1) 401

From my own point of view it's about what job your doing at the time
A lot of devs take they're favored language and say it's the bee's knees regardless, so don't often provide an objective view

Device Drivers
Ideally you want maximum speed and the least amount of code as it's likley the routines within Drivers
will be called lots and lots of times by applications further up the chain
Usually **C** is the favored choice for this

Desktop / Window Managers
Again your facing a lot of code thats going to be called repeatedly lots of times
but there's going to be a lot more complexity involved here
So ideally you want something as close to **C** as possible but with object orientations with Class's etc, i.e. **C++**

Desktop Applications
This is one of the two that most people will write for usually
Linux tends to favor **C++ or Java**, Windows tends to favor managed **.Net** Applications
I see Java being more of a forerunner of .Net but it's libraries have become a mess
The latest .Net Core has the ability to compile down to native code, and is more feature rich
meaning you get a whole bunch of syntactic sugar you simply don't get with other languages (see Reactive Extensions or Entity Framework)
More features / easier to use = less time to get it to work, less code, easier to read, quicker to fix

Website Applications
This is the second of the two that most people will write for
Again the number of options available is massive, but personally I see .Net (specifically .Net Core) jumping ahead
It's more feature rich, which means businesses will need less work time to implement a given feature
and it's more type safe (vs PHP for example) meaning less likley to have problems with hacks or leaks

Administrative Scripts
A lot of this depends on the environment your using, Linux for example has Bash scripts Ruby etc
Windows has Powershell
**Python** is my favorite here as it's cross compatible and easy to debug with Visual Studio or PyCharm, easy to read and has object orientation built in with a ton of libs

Comment Re:Huh (Score 2) 143

Since the article didn't explain things very well

The people that are Xamarin are also the same people that maintain mono for running .Net apps under Linux
For a while now they've been making money by selling a product that allows you to run .Net apps under Android and IOS
The main down side is that it's quite expensive and an additional cost on top of Visual Studio.
The main up side is that you can write apps for Android or IOS while using .Net and avoiding java

The above announcement means lots of .Net developers can now write apps for Android and IOS for free if they already have Visual Studio which is quite a big thing and opens the door for a lot of people to write Android apps

I was kind of expecting this when MS bought up Xamarin recently. Microsoft have been going the open source route recently in a big way with they're new .Net Core which is basically a complete re-write of .Net for 5.0 merging in mono at the same time. The target being the likes of Google / Facebook where you can have lots of websites running on linux boxes with docker isolation to compartmentalize security breaches

Comment Re:PCI DSS Compliance (Score 1) 25

The key things are:

1. software that monitors every file change on the system, dll's exe's running apps, running services
2. software that monitors all event logs and emails you when certain patterns emerge such as brute force attempts
3. spending months turning off a gazillion group policy settings, or cisco settings to harden kit
4. Nessus is very good at flagging up open ports / (such as Avira's remote management ports for example), or the fact your not using ldaps for your domain

That is not checking boxes, and that is required to get a certificate
That being said there are different auditors and from a higher management point of view it's going to pay to go with the ones that cause the least amount of hassle
The last auditors we had included an ex police officer and a pro sys admin, the ones we're currently with also study our cisco configs for the switches and the firewalls to generate reports on advisories for stuff to change.

Comment Re:PCI DSS Compliance (Score 4, Informative) 25

Being an admin myself that's had to lock down kit for PCI DSS standards, these work a little differently

1. First you need to be audited by an external auditor that provides the certificate
If you don't follow the rules then no certification, bribes don't work ether, and most of these guys are really thorough.

2. The network needs to be seperated into DMZ and Protected zones, the credit card data only exists within the Protected zone and there's no direct contact from that zone to the internet, it has to go through a hardware firewall via the DMZ to get to the outside.

3. Typically you install software such as NNT or Tripwire, this monitors every change on the box from dll's being replaced to the smallest change such as Antiirus updates. Filtering and managing this can be a full time job as an admin, usually the software has stuff inbuilt to filter down av updates for example.

4. Next you usually have a set of reports usually built into the same monitoring software that run against all the hardware and check a large number of security settings, most of these can be setup via GPO's some can actually lock it down to the point where the hardware becomes unusable so it can be a comprimise sometimes.

5. Section 10 means that all event logs from all devices need to be captured into a database, this also has a reporting mechanism setup for example if someone tries to brute force the firewall within x minuites or so. minimum storage time is 12 months, also there should be off site backups

6. Every month windows updates need to take place, every 3 months there needs to be scans via software such as Nessus internally, external scans usually via the auditor. Every 6 months a review of the firewall rules, updates to all the software such as cisco firmwares etc.

7. 2 factor authentication is mandatory (yubikey and a password), all access to the kit should also be ip restricted.

8. All code is audited, software devs have to go on training courses, read up on security standards (try googling secure string in C#, or wasp)

The paperwork is horrendous, but it's far from checking boxes, a lot of work has to go into hardening kit for the PCI DSS complaince.
Most of the settings you have to change on the kit to harden it usually originate from ether Nessus scans or the complaince reports run from the monitoring software and there's a lot of it.

Comment PCI DSS Compliance (Score 2) 25

One question to ask is, were Talk Talk PCI DSS 3.1 Compliant?
Were they using software for change control, and logging of device event logs?

If your storing credit card data, then these standards require you to use software that recomends locking down kit, and logging via event logs to see who's broken in etc
Also to get the certified you need to be audited by an external auditor, have monthly updates, 3 monthly scans, 6 monthly sotware updates etc.
I can't help but think with all these break ins, it's just piss poor admin / or cheapness that's at fault

Comment Nessus already shows this (Score 1) 60

One of the things I've setup in the past
is a server environment with PCI DSS compliance

by default comms between internal servers and the wsus server are also not protected via ssl
(since you'd need to install the certs for the wsus onto the client machines if it's self signed)

one of the first things I turned on was SSL WSUS Support
(along with SSL Active directory, and SSL everything else)

If your doing your job properly when it comes to securing environments
usually you'll install a piece of software like tripwire or NNT or Nessus
part of which checks over all the settings, like group and local policy, with port scans
to list all the crap to be turned off or changed (wsus ssl in the group policy was at the top of the list btw)

Comment Magnetic Field? (Score 1) 136

I always thought the main issue with life on mars was the lack of a magnetic field
On earth we have a big lump of metal spinning at the core, this generates the field needed to protect us from the solar wind
but in the case of mars it's theorised that this isn't the case

without a magnetic field, this means more solar wind
lots of radiation goodness and thinner atmosphere since the solar wind blasts the edge of the atmosphere away from the planet, similar to constantly thinning it out
also less pressure equals liquids boiling off, which is probably why all the water is ether only frozen or underground

although I'd admit if they did get something to grow there it'd be fun to see all the fallout style mutations cropping up at the poles

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