Cisco was forced into reverse ferret mode late last week, after it automatically updated some of its Linksys routers in such a way as to make use of its Cloud-based management console obligatory. But - following howls of protest from its customers - Cisco began offering punters the option of rolling back the firmware update to …
Dear Geniuses at Cisco,
Did you ever consider the fact that I might want to properly administrate *my* router whilst it was not connected to the internet?
At least have the decency to ensure any cloud admin functionality is duplicated locally with the settings kept in sync.
"administrate" ? The word is administer. HTH.
No no no, it's administerificatalise :-)
What wrong with him wanting to ply his router box with ads? I think he should have the right to do that if it's what turns him on.
Ever dictionary I consult regards the two as synonymous in the sense intended, i.e. "manage". You can only administer drugs or church rituals but in the more general sense you can do either.
"Cisco Connect Cloud does not actively track, collect or store personal info or usage data for any other purposes, nor is it transmitted to third parties."
... yet. Ho hum.
I guess the OpenWRT port is well underway?
Being used to corp-speak, I immediately parsed this as "passively tracks, collects, and stores personal info and usage data, to be retrieved later by third parties".
Or am I just being cynical again?
In the business of milking customers
I had an unpleasant experience when the router administration software installed from the WAG router product CD decided to deny all wireless connections for the laptop of my better half. Turns out they had just included some trial software and it didn't gracefully retire. Upon de-installation from the laptop, that trial software reset the router to factory conditions (so there had been some wireless connectivity after all), disconnecting the rest of the household.
Message to Cisco: consumers want stuff that works. Without hassle. More than 6 month.
Another automatic update story
(after the Skype one)
What is it with these companies that they assume any big organisation is going to happily let them update their firmware whenever they want. Is this a US thing ?
Surely any organisation of size would have automatic updates disabled, off, forbidden etc, based on the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" school of keeping the lights on.
Or is this a symptom of increasing virtualisation ? "Oh well, if the updates bork the company, we'll just roll back" ?
Re: Another automatic update story
If any BIG organization would use a Linksys product as the company router, that's an automatic FAIL. Linksys is Cisco's consumer product range, i.e. sold in markets and B&M computer stores.
In a big organization I'd have no problem using a Linksys wireless access point (not routing) in a small scale deployment and managing them on a separate VLAN or at least separate IP block that is not routed to the internet.
If it isn't connected...
If the router is not connected to the internet and it requires a 'cloud' based management system to configure it... how do you configure it to connect to the internet so that it can connect to the remote management system?
Not to mention the whole thing about only including configuration tools and manuals on a CD that requires Windows or Mac OS X in order to run the basic setup and access the documentation about setting it up.
Or you could go on eBay and find yourself a Cisco 1801 which has 10/100 and ADSL2+ WAN, an 8-port managed L2 PoE Switch, runs proper enterprise grade routing software and just works. Plus you can pick them up for £150ish. If you don't want a seperate access point, they even do a 1801W.
Re: Cisco 1801...
You do realize that the "not so consumer" REAL Cisco options do not sport any "nice" and convenient web GUI (later ASA offerings notwithstanding)? As an enthusiast who got tired of consumer gateways, I bought and configured a Cisco 871 (learned IOS from scratch). The VAST majority of folks would never have the time, patience or inclination to put in the Herculean effort that is learning IOS from scratch by yourself well enough to configure your router without leaving massive security holes open. Don't even get me started on Service Agreements (for those who have no other "professional" access)...
Re: Cisco 1801...
Actually virtually all Cisco devices can be managed using the Cisco Professional Configuration Manager which gives a great web interface and allows you to perform security audits of the device to ensure it's locked down. I have a guide up on my website at http://callammcmillan.com/cmv6/mcmillan-on-technology/8 which shows how to set up an ADSL connection. There is also one for securing the device.
If you're the kind of person that buys a Linksys and then sets it up using the default wizard and never touches it again, then this really isn't for you. This is aimed more at the people above who read El-Reg and like to fiddle with their kit.
Dunno about anyone else...
... but when I get a new router I want to reset the default password and have a general poke around the settings before I let it anywhere near the internet.
I am starting to collect old hardware and software -- so old that none of the makers are bothering to update it anymore. And I'm keeping one computer off the net so they can't even sneak in and try.
What are the hidden & undocumented access methods used by Cisco?
It would be nice to know the hidden & undocumented menus used to Cisco's cloud management - then we can build our own local interface.
A few of examples of hidden menus on a high-end consumer wireless access device:
How about just bundling the capabilities into the device so nothing external is needed?
How about bundling standard SNMPv3 into the device so external interfaces can be standardized?
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