Seal

Agents of the Revolution
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Everything posted by Seal

  1. I've developed a few distributed systems for the geophysics company I work at. In my case, the specs of the machines varied wildly. What I did was break up computational tasks into discrete blocks to be allocated to all computers, on a first come first serve basis. If the task was 100 blocks, then the faster computers would invariably complete more than the slower computers, but they'd all contribute to speeding things up. The important thing to keep in mind was the overhead. If it took three minutes to send the data over the network, but one minute to process - that was a waste of resources. I worked on optimization tricks, but by and large the thing to keep in mind is that this isn't a panacea. It's good for brute forcing, which has little data transfer requirement. Doing your own distributed system is relatively easy with Python. You can probably do it in less than 300 lines of code.
  2. I switch DE's all the time. Right now, I'm onto Cinnamon, with Docky installed.
  3. It's a term that white hat script kiddies use to identify themselves by.
  4. I find that the best way to learn, at least for myself, is not to read a bunch of material whose relevance isn't immediately obvious. It doesn't tend to stick for me when I do that. Rather, I start little projects, and I use those as my jumping point to learn about new things. Write a small IRC client if you want to learn about low-level networking. Put together a hex editor to learn about ASCII and binary. It's really by doing that I learn. A book I liked was "Write Great Code" by Randall Hyde, which looks at how computers work at the low level. I also surf Reddit to learn about new things programming related.
  5. Maybe this will be a dud too, but perhaps start process explorer and see if you can glean clues about what the process is doing during those long stretches between when you execute it and when it finishes loading up.
  6. Your traffic is probably being monitored by a plethora of signal intelligence agencies, but I doubt very much that you would ever be targeted as a person of interest. These agencies pilfer through data to gather intelligence about national security, and could care less that you like donkey porn. I don't use encryption for files. I used to, and when I did, I made sure to use something that was platform independent. TrueCrypt with multiple passes was my choice. For surfing, I use HTTPS if I'm on a public network. I also do not bank or use any financial services from a public network, mostly because PayPal doesn't much like it when you're a Canadian logging in from Africa. For my wifi network, I use WEP for backward compatibility.
  7. You can place your source code wherever you want. You don't need it to be in the same directory as your Java compiler. If you hadn't added the Java compiler directory to the PATH variable, you would have just needed to specify the absolute path of the compiler executable when calling it. To be clear: you can put the source code wherever you want. I put mine for Windows 7 in: C:\Users\<My Account Name>\Development\Name_of_my_project\
  8. I quite liked the first volume of "Write Great Code" from No Starch Press (http://nostarch.com/greatcode.htm). It's not actually about coding, so much about how the CPU and computer works from a general overview perspective. The author's thinking is that if you know how a computer works, you'll be more apt to write code that better caters to its limitations/strengths. But it's great from a hardware introduction perspective. As for circuitry, you might want to consider playing with an FPGA development board. You can grab one for less than a hundred bucks, and get to essentially make your own ICs.
  9. As to how to add a path to the PATH variable, I'm assuming you run Windows. If so, look here for how to do it: http://www.computerhope.com/issues/ch000549.htm That said, if you're having trouble setting things up, you could try toying with this website: http://ideone.com/ It lets you write and run Java code right there. Good for toying with the language for the first time. Thanks for the welcome.
  10. I would patch the hole, inform the parties affected by the breach, and enact preventative measures to mitigate further exploitation.
  11. This is one of those questions where if you ask ten people, you'll get ten answers. None of them are wrong; there are benefits to each of these languages from the perspective of a newbie. It becomes a question of what you prioritize. Personally, I lean towards recommending Python. It's reliance on whitespace to identify blocks of code makes for clean looking source code, which is often an issue with newcomers to whitespace-blind languages like C/C++/JavaScript/etc. It has a gazillion libraries, which makes doing such tasks as a simple HTTP GET request far simpler than with sockets and C/C++. It supports a number of programming paradigms (object oriented, functional) which really facilitates the ability to write simple code.
  12. You can get Opera for Linux. I have it running on my Ubuntu 10.04 box. I still very much like it today, more so than Firefox. Still though, none for me matches Chrome, which just feels faster.
  13. Look at what's in /bin/ Those are the biggies.
  14. Well I would go back to lattera's initial argument: encryption is great, if used properly. It's not applicable in all contexts. If you are already infected, then there's very little protection encryption will afford you. A keylogger would still be able to capture valuable information, your traffic to banks or other secure sites could be preempted and your information passed through an unwanted middle man, etc. The best protection is education. Understand how basic popular attack vectors such as CSRF and XSS work so that you reduce the risk of compromising your information. The future of compromising your information is not to infect your computer, it's to target the web apps you use. This is much more difficult to protect against, and the bad guys are all over it.
  15. The risk of compromise is negligible. So the question becomes: is it thus worth it to me to spend all this time maintaining extra layers of security, most of which is largely illusionary, to reduce by a negligible amount the already negligible risk? No. It is not. Cost versus benefit.
  16. I think too much is made of encryption. I don't bother encrypting my emails. I don't do full-disk encryption. I don't encrypt my instant messenger conversations. I really don't see the point. MITM attacks are not possible in my home environment. My computer being compromised is so improbable that it's not worth the effort of going through defensive measures other than my typical router + closed inbound ports combo. Plus, if it was compromised, full-disk encryption would do nothing. The only thing I do is that I keep an encrypted file on my hard disk, where I put my pron when I travel to other countries. I do this because some countries will do very bad things to people who have adult-adult pron (even the US). So I do that, wipe my swap, wipe my history, and overwrite empty sectors when it's all done. But only when I plan to travel. The only time I would ever take any additional precautions is when I'm at a hacker con. Because it's only there where the threat of an actual MITM attack or passive network sniffing is beyond negligible. For that, I'll tunnel everything through SSH with a pre-verified RSA key. If there's a key mismatch, I drop the connection.
  17. Here's source code for an HTTP proxy in Python: http://www.voidtrance.net/2010/01/simple-python-http-proxy If you the proxy, and have your browser forward traffic through that HTTP proxy, then you can have the proxy manipulate the HTTP response. Python's string manipulation capabilities are quite good, and perfect for a task such as this.
  18. Qt Creator is also a decent, free, C++ IDE. You can get it from here: http://qt.nokia.com/downloads/sdk-windows-cpp
  19. Is anyone going to go to this year's Phreaknic? I'm thinking of going.
  20. I'm in the same situation, only with my neighbours in my building. My apartment building is cheap and away from the city. So, as you can imagine, it's full of elderly people. It only started with one - but then she told others... and it spread. It got to the point that they wanted me to work 5 hours a week just fixing spyware-laden crap and create photo books. Doesn't sound like much, but when you don't have weekends and work long hours 5 hours of "free" time is alot. Finally, the initial lady got protective when she found out I had to work 2 real jobs and told the others to back off. Now I only work for her. I feel like I'm her bitch and this is prison.
  21. is in South Africa.

  22. That's how it works at our company. We now utilize open-source CVS, CMS, compilers, virtual machines, etc. Traditionally we would of had to pay for all of this... a few hundred here, a few thousand there... The money they've saved is spent on other necessities, helping the business. Colonel Panic, I like your definitions. Perhaps a little tweak: there can be commercial open-source software. Qt is one example.
  23. I really think you guys should cool down. This leaker's indiscretion could have been used to make Adrian's life, and everyone else he talked to, very very uncomfortable. It was carelessness, and though the outcome is unfortunate, the onus was unto him to keep quiet. Second of all, the use of the term "ex-hacker" is a media creation, and is not a term adopted by Adrian himself. He was, and always shall be, a hacker. Adrian is a good guy. You shouldn't be so quick to demonize him, esp. if you didn't actually know who he was previous to this article's release.
  24. Alright, well first you have to get it out of your mind that you're a bad catch. You're not. The StankDawg I know is a very kind, gentle, man. That counts for alot. I've been hurt too, and it took me quite a while to lower my barriers with my current partner. The only thing I can say is that taking it slow is not an indication of poor trust. It's an indication that you need time to test the waters, and make sure that this is something that is good for the both of you.