2018 – The year of Linux on the desktop

Just kidding, this post is a review of Kubuntu / Ubuntu 18.04 (Bionic Beaver) I’ve been running Linux on my desktop – either directly, or in a virtual machine (VM) – since Mandrake 8.1 in 2002, and I’ve had a love-hate relationship with it.  Love: Free (as in both beer and speech) Open Source, configurability,…

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Greylisting is looking a bit long in the tooth

Back in 2006, when I set up thinktank.co.nz’s mail server defenses, SPAM was increasing at an astronomical rate. There were a number of tools to use on mail servers to help stem the tide, including greylisting, SpamAssassin, Realtime Blackhole Lists (RBL’s), signature systems including Vipul’s Razor and Pyzor; other technologies such as Sender Policy Framework…

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Printing unprintable websites like the NBR

Do you want to print off articles (either on paper or PDF) from unprintable websites like the NBR? Some web property owners set up their sites so that you can only view them on screen. No problem, it’s completely possible to print these off using this little trick. You’ll need the Chrome browser to do…

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Scriptkiddies in overdrive

It must be that time of year again.  There seems to be heightened activity of script-driven attacks on servers.  Most of these attacks are attempted brute-force password cracks of WordPress accounts. Here’s a list of countries (by ISO country code) that attacks have come on one of my servers from in the last 48 hours….

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Technical Due Diligence Checklist

From time to time, I get asked to perform technical due diligence on investment opportunities.  I have a checklist, and I thought I’d share it with others in the hope that it might be useful. If you have anything you think I’ve missed or got wrong, please let me know in the comments, and I’ll…

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The Internet in NZ – not half bad

I’ve just returned from a 3-1/2 month trip, mostly holiday with my wife Kate and 11 year old son Dan, in which we visited Hong Kong, Vietnam, Italy, Switzerland, France, Spain, and the USA, generally avoiding big cities.  Naturally, it was important to stay well-connected every place we went, so we employed a combination of…

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Speak little; listen much

I’ll be giving a talk at TEDxWellington next weekend.  I’m not allowed to reveal too much about what I’m going to say, but I will be spending some time talking about the IETF’s Requests for Comments, or RFC’s for short. One of the most important RFC’s is RFC 760, which defined Internet Protocol, or IP…

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Ubuntu Maverick on a Thinkpad X201

I finally upgraded my Thinkpad X201 from Kubuntu Lucid to Maverick over the weekend.  I’m pleased to report that the process was nearly flawless using KPackageKit.  Despite segfaults in KPackageKit which didn’t seem to deter it, the upgrade process went very smoothly and took about an hour. I’ve only encountered three minor problems: There were…

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