Month: July 2008

Pollution and Servers

There is a lot of interest in making organisations “green” nowadays. One issue is how to make the IT industry green. People are talking about buying “offsets” for CO2 production, but the concern is that some of the offset schemes are fraudulent. Of course the best thing to do is to minimise the use of […]


Xen and EeePC

I’ve been considering the possibility of using Xen on an ASUS EeePC as a mobile test platform for an Internet service. While the real service uses some heavy hardware it seems that a small laptop could simulate it when running with a small data set (only a few dozen accounts) and everything tuned for small […]


Mobile SSH Client

There has been a lot of fuss recently about the release of the iPhone [1] in Australia. But I have not been impressed. I read an interesting post Why I don’t want an iPhone [2] which summarises some of the issues of it not being an open platform (and not having SSH client support). Given […]


Logic and Pants

I just read an interesting post about proposed new laws in the US prohibiting exposing underpants [1]. This is not a new thing and is part of a debate that has been taking place in many countries since the trend of “hip hop” saggy pants. The first thing that occurs to me is to wonder […]


New SE Linux Policy for Lenny

I have just uploaded new SE Linux policy packages for Debian/Unstable which will go into Lenny (provided that the FTP masters approve the new packages in time). The big change is that there are no longer separate packages for strict and targeted policies. There is now a package named selinux-policy-default which has the features of […]


Is a GPG pass-phrase Useful?

Does a GPG pass-phrase provide a real benefit to the majority of users? It seems that there will be the following categories of attack which result in stealing the secret-key data: User-space compromise of account (EG exploiting a bug in a web browser or IRC client). System compromise (EG compromising a local account and exploiting […]


Label vs UUID vs Device

Someone asked on a mailing list about the issues related to whether to use a label, UUID, or device name for /etc/fstab. The first thing to consider is where the names come from. The UUID is assigned automatically by mkfs or mkswap, so you have to discover it after the filesystem or swap space has […]

Misc Computer

New ZCAV Development

I have just been running some ZCAV tests on some new supposedly 1TB disks (10^40 bytes is about 931*2^30 so is about 931G according to almost everyone in the computer industry who doesn’t work for a hard disk vendor). I’ve added a new graph to my ZCAV results page [1] with the results. One interesting […]


Advertising a Scam

Below is a strange Google advert that appeared on my blog. It appeared when I did a search on my blog, it also appears on my post about perpetual motion. It seems quite strange that they are advertising their product as a scam. It’s accurate, but I can’t imagine it helping sales. Related posts: Advertising […]

Misc Computer

Awful Computers for Kids

I have just observed demonstration units of the V-Smile system [1]. They have “educational games” aimed at ages 3-5, 4-7, and some similar ranges. The first thing I noticed was that children who were able to correctly play the games were a lot older than the designated ages. For example 10yo children were playing the […]