The only choice for serious nut-gripping!
2929 posts • joined 15 Mar 2007
The only choice for serious nut-gripping!
Now if was not for the UK's shitty connectivity to so many remote areas...
"Belt & suspenders" has a slightly different meaning this side of the pond!
Lets face it, a large number of recurring vulnerability in software written in C due to buffer overrun and misuse of printf() like format strings are ALREADY flagged by compilers like gcc if you use -Wall.
Problems is your code monkeys have to give a monkey and (a) use those options, and (b) fix them when found.
I noticed that when I visited NY years ago, cashier didn't even look at my signature. I think the most likely reason is the one given by @JBolwer above:
"When a US debit card is run *without* the PIN it is billed as a credit card (for the store) and lots of steel-rice-bowl types (as my Chinese wife would refer to them) get humongous amounts of cut out of this. And the store gets Ripped."
1) First step, always, is to fully backup/image your working Windows PC.
2) Second step is to spend a short while going through each bit of software you use (not always what is installed!) and create a list of it, why you use it, and any special catches with that (e.g. you must have V1.1 because V2 broke XYZ...etc). Make sure you can find the installation media/files, and any licence keys, etc.
3) From step 2, consider how critical EXACT compatibility it, and how much you really need any compatibility. From this you can decide if there are Linux versions that are good/better substitutes. Generally for email & web you will find Thunderbird & Firefox are shipped with most distros and work just fine as long as you are not tied to Exchange and/or crappy IE-only Intranet services.
4) Decide if you want to dual-boot, or try creating a Windows VM from your current PC. Both have slight risk, and to be perfectly honest, if you can create a clean VM of windows, patch it, and install only the software you really need, it will be faster and more reliable. Pros & cons:
Dual-boot - gives you Windows native speed for games, etc, but you lose out on disk space and risk some dumb-ass Windows update breaking the grub boot-loader (some shitty old software, like certain Adobe things, would also break grub booting by putting DRM stuff just after the MBR and outside of the Windows file system assuming nobody ever needed that...).
VM allows simultaneous Linux (e.g. web/email safely) and Windows (specialist software) but is more memory-heavy and you lose out on fancy graphics speed.
Also is allows "rootmydeviceyoubunchofuselessfuckers" to match..
I don't men the read/write permissions of individual /proc entries, I mean the lack of sand-boxing of all user process to mask such FAIL! cases as reported here.
It is not a real file, but part of the the device driver's internal memory that is presented as if it were a file.
That is how the UNIX model works, everything is a "file". You can access the keyboard and terminal as stdin and stdout, etc (same as Windows there). Hard disks appear as /dev/sda and the partitions on them as /dev/sda1 and so on, serial ports as /dev/ttyS0, etc, etc.
Why are user processes, presumably in some sort of sandbox for protection against dodgy stuff, allowed to *write* to /proc? Often disabling access to /proc except for your own process ID is one of the standard AppArmor settings.
Just trying to stand back from this massive FAIL and look at the bigger picture of system protection. Oh, and while we are at it, can someone beat the Chrome and Firefox dev teams until they start using and maintaining a tight AppArmor profile as well?
Of course in a similar vein:
Targeted hacking is much less of a concern to me that the hoovering of EVERYTHING you access via your ISP "just in case".
Should be curtains for the prosecutor
Indeed, people do dumb things, people make mistakes.
The issue here is its the 2nd time its happened, and its a known risk, so someone high up needs a total bollocking for not putting in place technical measures to stop stupid abuse of To/CC fields. Really, having a limit of 5 or so (maybe with an override button with "Are you really sure?" and a list of personal actions that *will* be applied if abused) would make little difference to sane email use, and having other configured options like email lists for any internal or external groups that need large updates would deal with the rest.
I would be more worried by an increase in mercury poisoning from said low-energy bulbs being dumped in landfill and leaching in to the water table over a few decades. But then I don't know the facts so could be talking out of my arse for all anyone knows...
I noticed that as well, Windows 7 VM was "checking for updates" for a couple of hours before I turned it off as not needed.
I used to dual-boot Windows and Ubuntu, but now its Ubuntu with a couple of Windows VMs for stuff that needs it. Much more flexible and works fine with most things, though not much good for games that need top graphics performance or any special hardware that needs hardware drivers for PCI connections (OK for USB, etc).
Or coat the tips with some insect repellent every so often?
What is actually changing? The MS web page does not say what these "modern synchronization technologies" are that are needed. POP or IMAP, are they really modern?
Or are they the ones being deleted to force poor outlook users in to a web interface to spam you with adverts more effectively?
There was talk of making it illegal to strip metadata, which would stop this (or at least give you redress).
I think it should be a bit more complex though as some metadata might be dangerous to share (real name, GPS coords of your kids, etc) but if there is a random copyright ID that can by linked you you should you allow it (i.e. reverse lookup tricky unless you set it so or reply to a request) but otherwise exists as a flag it is copyrighted by someone who has not given that right up, then it would be a good thing.
Oh how my friends laugh at me for still buying music CDs...
Exactly, so once per year would leave on average 6 months to do your business over! Pointless...
However, changing shared passwords after someone leaves (say any shared admin accounts on certain boxes that don't support more than one admin user), or following a potential compromise, make a lot of sense.
There is some sense here, you want users to have long passwords to make them difficult to guess, but easy to remember. So saying "at least 16 characters, like a few words perhaps" and not requiring stupid ratios of punctuation, numbers, and case, is likely to get them using something different to other services, and to remember it instead of putting it on a post-it note.
Also, of course, having a bozo filter to stop "Correct Horse Battery Staple", or even "password" or "12345" and similar being used N times to fit the minimum limit...
Or Oracle deleting/redirecting the Sun site instead of just changing page logos so hyperlinks still work.
c) PLCs networked together without any firewall rules to enforce communications only with a few designated monitor computers. Or fancier intrusion detection.
Of course, one would hope that the monitoring computers were not unpatched Windows boxes due to the PLC suppliers being unable to support open standards and/or be sure that system updates are not going to break poorly written software...
Didn't the Judean Peoples' Front split from the Judean Peoples Front over some dispute about possessions?
Maybe, maybe. But lets face it, it appears WIPO is almost the thinking man's FIFA in terms of inability to deal with internal corruption. Sadly it took the USA to step in and force action on FIFA.
Almost, as there is always ICANN...
Or the Iranians making it look obvious so you think its an Israeli false flag. Or the Israelis making it look like the Iranians...
I am mostly a Linux user, with a few VMs for specialist Windows software. I most certainly don't want Windows to disappear, but I would like its desktop share to drop further, say to 60-70% so that companies are willing to supply device drivers (or supporting documentation) for non-Windows OS.
Quite a few do fairly well in this respect already, offering Mac & Linux support, but its still an issue for some things where they are just not supportable due to a lack of any openness or effort from the company.
I think AO is pointing out that in spite of still having ~90% of the desktop PC market due to legacy software investment worldwide, MS now has only ~30% of the total number of internet-connected computers, that means PCs, tablets and smart phones (most of which are not x86 nor Windows in any form but cheap Android devices).
"The only thing stopping you is the fact that the source code belongs to someone else"
No, its the fact that you have built your code to assume a specific API, like win32, and a specific model for GUI, maybe even worse with assumptions of the size of 'int' or similar instead of using int32_t or whatever options were supported. That makes even a small program an absolute PITA to port. That is what most legacy software is like.
The exceptions are stuff that was written to be multi-platform, even if just two variants of "UNIX" (say Linux and later MacOS) as then you have to write your code with some degree of abstraction for GUI and low-level stuff, and that greatly mitigates the pain for porting because you are probably started using two compilers/dev environments and can never be quite sure of what API consistency will be like, so you learn to segregate from the beginning.
"The user has to log on specifically as that user to do that - no privilege escalation is allowed."
And in that one sentence you have nailed the problem. Privilege escalation is not supposed to happen, short of giving the admin password (a whole set of FAIL! for another day's rant), but it does. And because all software, be it application, OS, or low level hardware driver, has bugs of one form or another it is inevitable that someday someone will find it.
That is why dreaming up ever more complex OS models to try and stop this is never going to be that successful. Sure we can segregate user accounts from admin tasks, and we can use things like SElinux/AppArmor to enforce the expected behaviour of process that have high privileges to reduce what p0wning them can do, but we can never be sure.
And that is why a backup machine has to be physically and administratively separate from any machine that can be taken over from the Internet access or portable media, etc. And it has to assume that files might be trashed, so some point-in-time model for data recovery needs to be implemented.
If you use snapshots in ZFS/GPFS or on NetApp boxes, etc, then you have the "copy on write" model so attempts to re-write files puts the data elsewhere on disk, and the original is still accessible via the previous (snapshot) file tables.
Of course you need to be doing snapshots, and to protect the machine doing so from being done over, and also to have long-term backups elsewhere so you can go back as far as you need when you discover it was infested. Some DB randsomware waited 6 months or so before revealing itself so there would be no viable backup to recover from.
The problem is it can't be controlled by "write privileges" on any box that is potentially compromised.
If your cryptolocker is run as an ordinary user then any normal backup is fine because it is done by a privileged account. But if your malware is anything smarter than a small user-mode script then it will exploit either the meatware for a suitable password or use any one of the numerous flaws in *ANY* OS to gain what it needs to attack all. There is always some sort of admin account, and pointing to the all-powerful UNIX root is a distraction that if you have a more compartmentalised model (as Windows should be, but usually is not) you still only need a few more steps to get the account you need.
Really, the only viable option is to reverse the process, so the backup machine comes in and reads what it needs from servers and desktops and where it writes it to, and how versioning/snapshots/etc, are controlled is well separate from the at-risk boxes.
Of course this also assumes you can simply log-in to the backup machine using an account on the others...
You mean the proper name for what the Yanks call a "billion"?
"But it's exactly things like this id card nonsense that drive people to want to get out of Europe"
So we can just get it shoved down our orifices by our own Gov instead? Remember Labour's obsession with it, on the current Conservative attempts to get our human rights removed to something they decide upon?
Are you seriously suggesting that the EU is somehow the source of this?
"Both campaigns in this sordid and rather pointless referendum are very poor."
I though that we had stopped talking about Scotland?
Yes, I'm Scottish and no, I am perfectly aware there were good points on both sides. But "sordid and rather pointless" seems to be how major political decisions with life-long implications are made these days,
Don't forget that GCHQ has two jobs:
- The one folk tend to think about is spying on world+dog
- The other is stopping world+dog spying on our glorious leaders
Clearly there is a conflict of interests here, as hoarding vulnerability to shaft the other guy could very well lead to your own boys getting done over when their kit is not patched. There is even advice given to gov BOFH to help out on lots of platforms, not just Windows. Though given the number of high-profile breaches we hear of, and no doubt others we (and possibly they) don't know about, one wonders if it is listened to.
Well web browsers take so much memory these days its almost inevitable it comes down to thoughtless crap management, and hence corruption...
Not just no profit for vendors, none for MS and a weakened market for Windows licences elsewhere.
I guess MS decided it was cheaper/easier just to use malware tactics to get existing Windows users on to 10 by hook or by crook?
Moore's law is an empirical observation from the early stages of IC development that predicted the growth in complexity possible from a combination of shrinking features and larger dies sizes are improving yields allowed it.
There is no physical meaning to it that says it has to continue, nor that it will be cost-effective to do so. Thus relying on "Moore's Law" is simply an act of faith that if you throw enough development money at your fab facility you will get bigger/faster/cheaper chips. It might not turn out that way as even today the cost of a single state of the art fab is unbelievable.
As does removing Flash and Silverlight.
On can hope, but sadly one also suspects that HTML5 will rapidly acquire enough complexity to bring the risk right back to square one.
That is a terribly Wong though
They listen to their customers.
You are the product, advertisers are the real customers.
Lets face it, MS struggles to maintain proper compatibility with their own versions of Office. I pity the poor buggers who end up depending on this.
It's too cold every time of the year!
Indeed, he pays a fortune in hair bleach/dye for that look
Nah, Keith Richards really died 20 years ago. Just no one told him he had to stop playing...
"allows it to synchronise the local date & time with a remote NTP server during bootup. This is bad how exactly?"
Syncing time during boot-up is a good thing. We already have ntpdate that is typically used to step-adjust during booting to correct any CMOS clock errors, so why re-implement it?
My point is not that the goals of systemd are bad, nor that init scripts have problems, but it is the growing number of systemd dependencies that mean you can't choose what and where.
If we want another rant, as one commentard has mentioned systemd will put a failed process in to maintenance mode, so it has to be manually restarted even after the next boot. With init a future reboot gives it another chance, which is a better thing for overall reliability (if in doubt || watchedog timeout => reboot!).
sudo killall -9 Autopilot