Grading and moving things around and re-integrating after my six months at AFIT have taken their toll on me and I’m looking forward to the long break at both jobs to help get a handle on things and to clean up all the cruft that’s accumulated over six months of being on the road.
I spent a lot of time in my early software development days writing programs to display images of the Mandelbrot set and ray trace images of oak wood grain pretzels stuck in lime jello on a mirror in space. That was back before I wanted to be a writer/teacher, when I thought I could be a mathematician. Every once in a great while I write the code for the Mandelbrot in perl or python, just to recall those days when vector calculus was a recreational pursuit.
Dr Mandelbrot has shuffled off this mortal coil. Here’s a link to the Jonathan Coulton song about him.
I’m back from SANSNS 2010. I took the 508 Computer Forensics Investigations and Incident Response course. It was a great course and like all SANS training you get hit with a huge volume of material is a very short amount of time. I kept my head above water through most of the class and did manage to win the forensic challenge at the end with my friend Bert. We both received these snazzy round metal objects (a.k.a. coins).
I’m teaching class now, so there is no time to study for the exam. I’m taking the recommended break between SANS firehousing and sitting for the exam. I’ll start tabbing out my book and reviewing my notes in November, then I’ll test for the GFCA and be a truly lethal SANS forensicator.
I noticed today that my RSS feed from Version Tracker was empty so I wandered over to the web site and lo and behold, she’s gone. CNet has gobbled up a piece of Mac history and re-branded it. They didn’t even bother to redirect Versiontracker to Mac software. My old bookmark took me a listing of new Windows software. Lame.
There are other Mac specific places to get details about Mac software updates, macupdate.com will be my new source for the latest updates and patches to Mac shareware and freeware.
Good bye to my old friend Versiontracker and shame on you CNet for what you’ve done. You’re joining the brand squashing club with Oracle.
I got the Kingdom Hearts PSP bundle today at the Gamestop. First impression is that this is a nice PSP 3001 bundle with a game I’ve been wanting to play for a long time. I never played the previous Kingdom Hearts becauce before now I’ve never had a Playstation.
I was a little disappointed that this PSP doesn’t have any identifying marks that shows its the special Kingdom Hearts edition, it is just a plain silver PSP. The Pokemon themed Nintendo was a unique color and had pokemon images on the case. I was expecting Mickey ears or some kind of Disney iconography on the case. A Kingdom Hearts theme for the XBM would have been a nice touch.
There was also a bit of confusion about what’s included in the bundle. The Gamestop website and the Sony PSP page still don’t agree. Gamestop says you get the game, a 4G memory stick, the silver PSP and a movie voucher. The Sony web site said the game, the 4G stick, the PSP and 50 songs from the Sony Music Store. For a week or so Sony listed Madden 11 as part of the bundle, but I think that was just a typo.
The box contains the PSP, the 4G stick, the game, and a SonyMusicPass for 50 songs. I’m new to the whole PSP and PS3 world so I was hopeful that the SonyMusicPass would be part of the PSN and I could get movies or TV shows but, no such luck. It looks like I’m stuck downloading songs from a very limited selection at the Sony Music site… bummer.
I hope the game is good…
And this week saw the beginning of another school year at Vermont Technical College. This is my 9th year with the school teaching Networks. I can’t believe how fast the time has flown by. If you are a student in the Fall 2010 Networks 1 course, this blog is NOT required reading, you need to head on over to skoda.net/moodle and access the course site.
In order to continue selling Microsoft products to the Russian government, the Redmond Washington software company granted various agencies of the Russian government access to source code for Windows 7, Server 2008, and other products.
The government agencies listed in the agreement include the former KGB. The source code access will help the Russian government to find security flaws in Microsoft products. What the Russians do with this knowledge is unclear.
Ten percent of Microsoft’s $1 billion Russian business revenue comes from the Russian government, according to a Bloomberg web article.
This isn’t the first time that Microsoft has allowed foreign governments access to their source code. They have a Government Security Program to grant source code level access to Microsoft products. GSP started in January of 2003 as a more formal name for their Shared Source Initiative which started in 2001.
According to the GSP home page:
Microsoft offers eligible, participating national governments no-cost, online smart-card access to source code for the most current versions and service packs of Windows Client, Windows Server, Windows Embedded CE, and Office. In addition, subject to such requirements as U.S. export approval, qualified GSP participants may also obtain access to cryptographic code and development tools. The GSP also provides transparency through disclosure of Microsoft technical information. This engineering-level view of Windows architectural design provides greater insight regarding the platform’s integrity and enhances national governments’ ability to design and build more secure computing infrastructures.
The recent Russian spy story makes this a little sensitive for Microsoft as ghosts of the Cold War resurfaced in the news this week. I wonder who else has access. The GSP web pages touts that this no-cost partnership is available in 65 geographic markets.
I bought a new 1T USB drive to use for storage of vm images and other large files. I need to move between Windows and Mac machines. I knew I couldn’t get a Mac version of a usb drive because those are typically formatted for HPFS which a Windows machine cannot read. I opted for the Windows version of the drive and when I got it home I plugged it into the trusty Macbook Pro. The drive mounted read-only, because it was formatted with NTFS.
At first I figured why not reformat with FAT32, then I could use the drive with Linux as well as Mac and Windows. The problem with FAT32 is there’s a file size limitation. I remembered this after I reformatted and tried to copy a 4.3G vmware image to the drive. Ooops.
Some quick googling resulted in this article: http://www.tool-box.info/blog/archives/1193-Snow-Leopards-NTFS-readwrite-support.html
Using the schell script method I now mount any NTFS partition in read/write mode on my Mac.
Well here goes, I’m starting the iOS upgrade on my iPhone 3G. Let’s see how it goes. I don’t expect any big trouble, but I’ve had my share of upgrade troubles this week already…