[Geeks are Sexy] technology news





Tuesday, February 28, 2006

China Prepares to Launch Alternate Internet

The Chinese government has announced plans to launch an alternate Internet root system with new Chinese character domains for dot-com and dot-net. This may mean that Chinese Internet users will no longer rely on ICANN, the U.S.-backed domain name administrator, and, as one commentator notes, could be the beginning of the end of the globally interoperable Internet.

Read more (via slashdot)



Monday, February 27, 2006

Justice Dept. Rejects Google's Privacy Concerns

2 weeks ago, in an act of defiance, Google refused to hand over the history of its users search queries to the Bush Administration. News are now out that the American Justice Department has just decided that whether they liked it or not, Google will have to provide the requested information to the government. Apparently, this will help revive an online child protection law that the Supreme Court has blocked a few years ago, by proving that Internet filters are not strong enough to prevent children from viewing pornography online.

Read more



How To Steal Wi-Fi...And how to keep the neighbors from stealing yours.

Ok, I'm not pointing you guys to this so that you can go and borrow (Or is it steal?) your neighbors high speed internet access. There is a lesson to be learned from this article, and I think that everyone who wish to protect their access point more effectively should read it. After this, you may want to take a look at an article I wrote a few months ago about what you can do to protect yourself from access-stealing villains.

"When I moved into a new neighborhood last week, I expected the usual hassles. Then I found out I'd have to wait more than a month for a DSL line. I started convulsing. If I don't have Net access for even one day, I can't do my job. So, what was I supposed to do? There's an Internet café on the next block, but they close early. I had no choice—it was time to start sneaking on to my neighbors' home networks."

Read more



Monday Morning Humor: Your Monthly Geek Horoscope

BBSpot has just released their latest edition of the Geek Horoscope. Funny stuff, like always.

"Feb 19 - Mar 20 Not fragging your signifigant other in Far Cry is not an appropriate Valentine's Day gift.


Oct 24 - Nov 21 You will die after your bladder explodes because you refused to hit pause during a continuous showing of the Lord of The Rings Trilogy back-to-back marathon."

Read more



Sunday, February 26, 2006

Next Gen Triple Threat: PS3 vs. Revolution vs. Xbox 360

The battle is beginning to heat up as the next generation of console wars kicks things into high gear. Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, the battle for your next generation gaming dollars has begun. Let's get ready to Ruuummmble!

"While the Xbox 360 is off to a solid start, the PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Revolution have yet to enter the fight in full force. However, over the next 6-10 months, all three players will deal their best hands in an effort to wow the gamer and take some money from the competition. Sony dominated that last two console cycles, but it looks like the company will have its toughest fight yet as the Xbox 360 and Revolution are looking to significantly cut into the PlayStation 3 market share. Let's break down how these three behemoths stack up against each other."

Personally, I think that Microsoft has a major advantage this time with the early release of their new gaming console. They will also have the chance to lower the price tags on all their different versions of the 360 when the PS3/Revolution will be coming out in the next few months. Sony used to have the biggest slice of the "gaming console market" pie, but every good thing has to end eventually, and I pray that this time, Sony will be going down the drain. Yes I hate Sony. I hate their proprietary technologies, their rootkit infested CDs and the falling quality of their products.

read more



Saturday, February 25, 2006

IT Crowd First Season is Now over : Links to all of the episodes

The IT crowd 1st season is now over, so here are the links to all of the episodes for your viewing pleasure. In case you never heard about this show, it features the day to day life of a bunch of IT professionals working for a big British corporation. Great stuff, simply hilarious. All of the episodes are freely downloadable via filecloud.

Episode #1: Yesterday's Jam

In a cluttered basement deep in the bowels of Reynholm Industries lurk Roy and Moss, the I.T. Department. Reviled and mocked by cooler colleagues, their world of servers and firewalls is rudely interrupted by the arrival of Jen, a new "Relationship Manager" who knows as much about computers as a yak. She doesn't want to work in a dingy basement, and they don't want a manager who doesn't understand BASIClet alone binary, but they discover sometimes there arebenefits to having a woman about the place...

Episode #2 Calamity Jen

The team are put to the test when Denholm declares War on Stress. Whilst Moss and Roy attend the educational buffet, Jen buys a dream pair of shoes that are two sizes too small, triggering a world of stress in the basement. Moss sets fire to the office, Roy's kleptomania gets the better of him and Jen's crippled feet ruin a multi-million pound deal and lead to ashowdown with Denholm...

Episode #3 50/50

Love is in the air in the basement. After a disastrous date with a receptionist Roy and Moss try their hand at internet dating inventing a dangerous new persona to lure potential dates, whilst Jen impresses a sexy new security guard with her musical knowledge. It all goes swimmingly until Jen's lucky guesses are put to the test on telly, and Roy's profile worksa little too well...

Episode #4: The Red Door

What is behind the mysterious red door in the I.T. department? What has happened to Moss's new mug? Why is Roy in danger of becoming known as a 'desk rabbit'? And what is the secret behind top executive Richmond Avenal's fall from grace?

Episode #5: The Haunting of Bill Crouse

Moss goes to extraordinary lengths to help Jen escape the unwanted attention of potential suitor Bill Crouse. Meanwhile, Roy is busy trying to escape the attentions of an admirer of his own...


Episode #6: Aunt Irma Visits

Jen explains that she is subject to very powerful mood swings around a certain time every month. When Moss and Roy start to display similar symptoms, it leads her to a terrifying, bizarre conclusion that will have terrible consequences for them and for the I.T. community at large.

You can also get the official IT crowd DVD box set if you want the serie in high, widescreen quality.



Friday, February 24, 2006

Firewall Misconceptions

Most SMBs think that if they have a firewall, they are perfectly secure. If you are a security consultant working for small businesses, you probably already heard some of your clients say something like this: "We have a firewall. That's enough, right?". The answer is often, "Not by a long shot!" Most small to midsized businesses need better in-depth defense. It's time to stop those sleepless nights with a "defense-in-depth" strategy.

Read more



Thursday, February 23, 2006

IT Crowd episode #5 Online now!

The IT Crowd episode #5 is now online, freely downloadable via filecloud! If you have no ideas about what I'm talking about, check this blog entry first.

Have fun!



The Theory behind deleted files recovery software: How do undelete your files manually in a FAT file system

hard disk recoveryMost of you are probably comfortable enough around computers to know that even if a file got deleted accidentally, and it’s not in the recycle bin, there are a few ways to get it back. I wrote an article about hard disk recovery a while ago, covering different free solutions to help you get your data back in case of a disaster, but this is something completely different.

To do our little experiment we will need:

  • A freshly formatted floppy disk
  • An hex editor that let you edit the content of a drive or partition (I used tiny hexer for this article. This editor is very small, free and simple to use)

WARNING: If you are not VERY careful, you could be corrupting data on your media by doing this. Only do it on a test disk that has no important data on it. If you really need to recover something important, use a data recovery software.

First, you have to know that files are still on the disk, even after you delete them. The only thing that happens when you erase one is that the pointer to the file gets removed from the drive index, marking the old file location as "Free". The next time you write something on your disk, you may end up overwriting your precious data since the old location is now marked as available. That is why you have to execute this procedure as soon as possible after deleting a file. DO NOT DEFRAGMENT your drive if you need to accomplish this procedure! Doing so would render all data recovery impossible. Why? Because as you probably know, defragmenting the drive puts file fragments back together, moving information from one location to another. If the pointer in the index points to something that isn't there anymore, you will not be able to recover anything.

1- Format your floppy

2- Create a text file named test.txt in notepad and save it on a: (could be any letter)

3- Start your hex editor, and open your a: drive for editing

4- Go to Sector 19 (Sector 19 is where the directory listing is on a floppy disk; it goes up to sector 32). The name of your file should be right there, written both in HEX and alphanumerical values.

5- Switch to your floppy drive and shift-delete test.txt

6- Go back to TinyHex and Refresh sector 19 (go to sector 18, and back to 19). You should now see that the name of your file is still there, but its first letter was replaced by the å character (hex E5). This indicates that the file was deleted. All you have to do now to undelete it is to type back its first letter on top of the å character.

7- Save your modification

8- Open your a: drive, Wow! The file magically reappeared on the floppy!

A floppy disk is composed of 2879 sectors:

0: Boot Track
1-9: First FAT
10-18: Second FAT
19-32: Disk Directory
33-2879: Data Area

For any FAT 12 and 16 volumes, the directory listing is always located right after the second FAT and has a fixed length. Under FAT32, the root directory is treated like a normal directory, and can be relocated and expanded in size. The FAT32 starting cluster is located in the boot sector at offset 2Ch (Most of the time, it points to a location after the second fat anyway).

NTFS:

Recovering data manually from NTFS is a bit more complex because the location of each file is noted in the MFT (Master Fat Table), and that table is unfortunately
not located in a predefined sector such as on FAT volumes. The Master file table is an index that contains every files on the volume. For each file, the MFT keeps records called attributes and each of these attributes store a different type of information.

First, you'll need to locate the exact position of the MFT on your disk. To do that, start your HEX editor and load up the desired partition. You should now be looking at sector 0 (Boot Sector). I'll give you a few hints about how to start your little research, but you'll have to do the rest by yourself.

An NTFS boot sector is divided in 6 parts

0x00: Jump instruction
0x03: OEM ID
0X0B: BPB
0X24: Extended BPB
0X54: Bootstrap code
0X01FE: End of Sector Marker

The BPB portion of the boot sector tells you at which logical clusters the MFT is. The exact position would be at 0x30 with a length of 8 bytes. The result would give you the Logical Cluster Number for the MFT file.

NTFS.com has an EXCELLENT tutorial about how to recover data from an NTFS partition, I suggest that you continue your little experiment over there. There are very little resources on the web about how to recover file manually from an NTFS partition. Your best bet would be at NTFS.com. If you really want to dig deeper in this subject, go and get yourself WinHEX. Winhex is the best hex editor on the market (In my own opinion). You'll be amazed by the functionalities of this wonderful application.

Add to Del.Icio.Us

Other [Geeks Are Sexy] technology articles



University Bans wi-fi as Health Concern

Last week, I wrote a blog entry about the possible implication of radio frequencies on people's health. Are these signals safe? Apparently, Fred Gilbert, president of Lakehead University is asking himself the same question. His university has decided to ban wi-fi use completely just because there may be some risk associated with the exposure to RF signals.

"the jury's out on this one, I'm not going to put in place what is potential chronic exposure for our students." Is anybody outside of this university's administration concerned about this?"

Read more.



Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Shavlik owns my soul

Mark Shavlik, CEO and founder of Shavlik Technologies, posted a link pointing to me on his blog for a personal review I did of HFNetChkPro, one of the best patch management solution available for SMBs today. For those that never heard about this product and are working in an environment that is in serious need of a patch management solution, I strongly suggest that you consult my review of the application and get a demo version right now for a test run.

"I wanted to point out the work this reviewer did at GeeksAreSexy for one of our products, and to thank them since they did this on their own. The site is a good general tech site, well worth knowing about."

You heard him, now start spreading the word! Banners are right here. Seriously, if you like [Geeks Are Sexy] in any way and you'd like to help, posting a link pointing to me would be greatly appreciated. I can also customize banners for your site if you do not like the available ones.

On a side note, Shavlik is also publishing a VERY interesting newsletter named "The Remediator Security Digest". If you are interested in computer security, then you'll love what this newsletter has to offer.


As you can see, Shavlik owns my soul.



Microsoft Vista information "accidentally" released

Yahoo News is reporting that Microsoft accidentally released information about Windows Vista earlier than originally planned.

"Microsoft disclosed information about a plan to release eight different editions of the new operating system on a company help page that was under development. The company has not made any official statements about the different versions of Windows Vista it plans to offer. The company has since taken down the Web site and declined to confirm the information and said it will offer more details about the Vista launch, targeted for the second half of 2006, in the coming weeks. Microsoft spokesman said in a statement 'This page has since been removed as it was posted prematurely and was for testing purposes only."

Sometimes, I think that corporations make these "involuntary" blunders just to gauge the reaction of the IT community. Doing this would be a great way to measure what people think about a particular product. Let's wait a few weeks and see what Microsoft comes up with. We may be actually surprised and learn that MS removed a few versions from their Vista product line. Wouldn't that be great news?



Tuesday, February 21, 2006

10 classic clueless-user stories

Technology may be evolving at warp speed, but one thing about IT will never change: Techs love to swap stories about the deficiencies of their users. The dumber, the better. That's just the way it works. How else are you going to make it through the week if you don't get to shake your head in disbelief after hearing at least one tale.

Read more on Zdnet Australia



World's largest Windows error message

Now this isn't something you see everyday :

"We went down to New York for the long weekend. Despite the 16-degree weather, we walked down to Times Square - all the bright lights lured us the ten blocks from our hotel. When we got there, we stood like, well, tourists, gaping at all the electronic billboards. And then, across the square, I saw it: the world's largest Windows error message - on a two-story high e-billboard (I guess everything really is bigger in New York). It was the only billboard in the entire square with absolutely no movement - since the PC running it had obviously frozen."



You have zero privacy anyway, get over it!

Sun Microsystems CEO Scott McNealy,infamous for his "You have zero privacy anyway, get over it." statement, took a conciliatory tone on the stage at the RSA Conference, allowing that privacy might be something for which consumers should fight. He warned companies that, unless they protect consumer privacy, they could lose out on significant online growth.

"It's going to get scarier if we don't come up with technology and rules to protect appropriately privacy and secure the data, and the most important asset we have is obviously the data on people--our customers and employees and partners," McNealy told attendees last week. "And if we can't protect that, people are not going to go online."

Read more at SecurityFocus.com.



The insults encyclopedia : Abuse-O-Tron

Need to insult someone today? Be sure to take a look at the Abuse-O-Tron, a lengthy encyclopedia of verbose insults. If one of your users is making life hard on you, throwing a few of those in their faces might actually make you feel better. I can't guarantee that you'll keep your job after, but hey, life isn't perfect right? Oh, and as a bonus, you may end up with a black eye also :)

"You lift your leg on trees, you stinking, guano gulping, squid whacking, pseudo-human android spawn of an entomologist with carnal knowledge of cockroaches."

Check it out (via tech. filter)



Monday, February 20, 2006

Which version of Vista will you run? You have 8 choices

Yes 8 of them, ridiculous isn't it? I always thought that a Pro and Home version was more then enough to please everybody, but now Microsoft came up with this absurdity. Supporting 2 versions is already giving us, the system administrators, enough work as it is, and now we'll have to deal with the particularities of 8 different operating systems.

Here they are:


  • Windows Starter 2007: Vista without Aero, only ships in 32-bit version.
  • Windows Vista Home Basic: Basic Windows Vista for your single PC home.
  • Windows Vista Home Basic N: Same as Home Basic, but without Media Player (For European countries).
  • Windows Vista Home Premium: superset of Home Basic, but with Media Center and Media Center Extender functionality (including Cable Card support).
  • Windows Vista Business: Same as XP Pro, but for Vista.
  • Windows Vista Business N: Same as XP Pro, but for Vista in Europe.
  • Windows Vista Enterprise: Business version of Vista with additional enterprise features (Virtual PC, etc.).
  • Windows Vista Ultimate: Superset of both Vista Home Premium and Vista Business, include all of the features of both of those products, plus other features.
If this summary didn't satisfy your thirst for knowledge and you want to learn additional details about these new operating systems, check out this review from winsupersite.com.



Sunday, February 19, 2006

Google rips Bush administration's search request

Google called the Bush administration's request for data on Web searches as "so uninformed as to be nonsensical'' in papers filed in San Jose federal court Friday, arguing that turning over the information would expose its trade secrets and violate the privacy of its users. I'm happy someone is finally confronting Mr. Bush's government about these privacy issues. It was about time!

Way to go Google!



Friday, February 17, 2006

Friday humor : We all need a little discipline at the office

Yes guys, we all need to be disciplined at the office sometimes, and this is how it should be done:

Check it out!



MS Office 2003 PRO and Office XP PRO Infringe third-party patent

I just received this letter from Microsoft this morning. I thought I'd let everyone know about it since it hasn't been widely published on the internet. I wonder why? Most people working in IT that I spoke with never heard about this eighter.



U.S. Warns of Coming Online Threats

The United States is warning internet users against what they feel will be the top Internet threats for 2006. Most of you guys will probably already know about these, but I think it is a good move from the government to help protect the part of the population that do not know about computer security as much as you do.

"The National Cyber Security Alliance, a central clearinghouse for security awareness and education, teamed with the Department of Homeland Security to create a list of emerging threats in the hope that more U.S. consumers will prepare themselves for attacks.

The predictions, which include cautions about an oncoming wave of identity hacks against online brokerage accounts, have been prepared over the past year, according to the NCSA, with the aim of focusing attention on online protection."


Read more



Thursday, February 16, 2006

1.2 petabytes hard drive.

Michael Thomas, owner of Colossa Storage, claims that he invented the technology that will let him create an affordable 1.2 petabyte hard drive. He expects it to be ready in about four to five years at a cost of $750.

Apparently, mr. Thomas is the first person to solve non-contact optical spintronics which will in turn utlimately result in the creation of 3.5-inch discs with a million times the capacity of any hard drive: 1.2 petabytes of storage, to be exact.

Just to put everything into perspective guys: mega is 1,024 times kilo, giga is 1,024 times mega, tera is 1,024 times giga and peta is 1,024 times tera.

That is A LOT of hard disk space!

Read more



How To Troubleshoot Any Networking Problem

How could someone possibly write a simple article that could actually help you resolve ANY networking problem? It sounds crazy doesn't it? Mark Minasi, a very popular technology writer, has almost done it with this article. It is well worth a read for anyone who is interested in networking.

Read more



Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Health issues surrounding the use of wireless networks: Are RF signals safe?

Linksys WRT54GThe explosive growth of wireless technologies in recent years has brought the IT world to a new, cableless era, where people can walk around their office and from one business location to another, without loosing connectivity to their network. The same goes for home users: they can now roam around their house with their laptop and surf the web in all liberty. The increasing popularity of wireless APs is rapidly saturating the air with RF signals, and this brings a new question to life: Should we be concerned about the effect of RFs on our health? Up to now, the safe limit of exposition to radio frequencies for human beings remains pretty much unknown. The studies have shown that there is no evidence that these signals present a hazard to people.

"Research on the possible health effects of exposure to radiofrequency (RF) energy dates back more than 60 years and will continue for the foreseeable future. As research adds to the extensive scientific knowledge in this important area, we believe it will further strengthen the basis for public confidence in the safety of current and future wireless communications technologies."

One thing that I know for sure is that these signals gives awful headaches when you work in a wireless lab where three or four access points are broadcasting at the same time on different channels. I've also heard many stories about people who had their desk located directly under a broadcasting antenna and whom had terrible migraines at the end each day.

Here are a few recommendations to follow if you want remain on the safe side:

  • Don't stand in close proximity to any antenna that is transmitting. Those that are only made to receive signals are perfectly safe. If an antenna is a directional one, it is safe for you to stay in the back or on the side of it.
  • Don't move a device that is transmitting.
  • Don't touch any powered antenna.
  • To comply with FCC RF exposure limits, dipole antennas (rubber ducky ones, like on most home wireless routers) should always be located at least 8 inches from any person.
  • When using a laptop with a PCMCIA or integrated wireless NIC, the adaptor's integrated antenna should always be at more then 2 inches from the body of the operator.

If you want to learn more about this interesting subject, I would strongly suggest that you visit the radio frequency safety section of the FCC website.

Other [Geeks Are Sexy] technology articles



Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Oh No! It's Microsoft Patch Tuesday!

Yep, it's that time of the month again. Microsoft released a couple of security patches today, including 3 critical ones (details).

Hurry up and head over to WindowsUpdate to get them while they're fresh!

If you didn't understand anything I wrote, you may as well check out my article about security for the computer challenged individuals.



Happy Valentine day!

Yep! It's that time of the year again. I hope you didn't forget about your significant other, because if you did, your in for a bad surprise tonight when you get home :)

You can still save the day by buying something from the [Geeks Are Sexy] Shop. You won't get it in time, but it's the thought that counts right?

Happy Valentine day everyone!



Monday, February 13, 2006

A Guide to Safer Web Browsing

The guys at TechFear have published a good guide about how to safely browse the web. Now you're probably thinking "Why the heck is he telling me that? Does he think I'm an idiot?". To this I answer: "No, of course not" but I thought that you could always point your computer challenged friends to it. If people around you know how to browse the internet safely, it means that you won't have to waste your time going to their home to fix their virus / spyware infested computers for free. Good deal don't you think? Don't forget: educating users is the way to trouble-free and relaxing weekends.

"Unfortunately, too many users ignore warning signs. Some may rapidly click the OK button when faced with an application installation dialog box without taking time to read what is being installed. This can result in unwanted applications that on one hand can slow browsing to a crawl, but on the other hand could be allowing the installation of adware, spyware, or a virus. Browsers with multiple toolbars are a good example of this type of rapid-click action."

You can also consult my guide about computer security: Microsoft Windows security for computer illiterates



Google offering Gmail for domains

A few days ago, Google announced their plans to offer Gmail services to corporations. They are presently testing a beta of the service which allows you to customize Gmail to make it look as an integral part of your organization. I guess this could be the perfect solution for SMBs who do not want to have the hassle of setting up a mail server and hosting it locally.

"This special beta test lets you give Gmail, Google's webmail service, to every user at your domain. Gmail for your domain is hosted by Google, so there's no hardware or software for you to install or maintain."



Sunday, February 12, 2006

New Data recovery article coming soon : The Theory behind the GUI

It's been a while since I've written anything big for [Geeks Are Sexy], but fear not, something interesting is coming along. I've been working here and there on a new article covering the theory behind data / hard disk recovery utilities. I'll be explaining how these applications actually let you undelete or recover your data, both for FAT and NTFS file systems and show you how you can do it manually. Understanding how it's done under FAT is quite easy, but it's entirely something else for NTFS, especially for Mr. and Mrs. Everybody.

It's been a busy weekend, my son turned 1 year old, and we had quite a party over here :)



Friday, February 10, 2006

IT Crowd Episode 4 Online Now

The title says it all! If you have no ideas about what I'm talking about, check this blog entry first.

Have fun! (edit: New download link)

And for those who are wondering if this is illegal, then no it's not. It is freely available via the IT crowd website also, but not for people outside of the UK.



WiFi for dummies

Security Focus comlumnist, Scott Granneman, just published this nice wireless security guide for dummies. It's worth a look!

"The average user has no idea of the risks associated with public WiFi hotspots. Here are some very simple tips for them to keep their network access secure."

You can also have a look at a similar article I wrote about the subject a few weeks ago: Securing your Home Wireless Network : A simple security guide



Thursday, February 09, 2006

Extreme Case Modding : To beleive or not, that is not the question.

This guy did a fastastic job on a custom "book of commandments" computer case. I never tought someone would actually think of building something like that, but it seems that I was wrong! I bet that if God would own a computer, it would look like that!

  • Prozessor: Intel Pentium D 3,2
  • Motherboard: Asus P5WD Premium
  • RAM: 2 GB OCZ DDR2 800 / PC 6400
  • Graphics: Asus GeForce GFX 7800 Extreme
  • Controller: Adaptec 29320 A
  • HDD: 2 x Seagate Savvio 2,5" SCSI U320
  • NT: BeQuiet 520Watt
  • DVD: Pioneer Slimline Slot-In DVD

Check it out.



Microsoft OneCare pricing is out! Release date: June 2006

Yesterday, Microsoft announced that their OneCare security service would be priced at $49.95 per year. This package will allow consumers to secure up to three computers using a complete suite of security products including a new and improved firewall, antivirus, system tune-up and backup software. The service, which is actually in beta-testing phase, will be released to the public next June according to the OneCare Live official blog.

Several people in the security community have already questioned themselves about this service. Should Microsoft get paid to protect its customers against problems that are caused by their own operating systems?



Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Ever dreamt of getting an iPod? iPods are cheaper then ever!

Yesterday, in order to win the favor of a poorer crowd, Apple released a 512MB and 1GB version of their iPod Shuffle, respectively priced at $69 and 99$. That's pretty cheap compared to what these used to cost a few months ago. A 1GB Nano also appeared on the market for a measly $149. Be the envy of you friends and family, get one now :)

Personally, I wouldn't even touch one of those from 200 miles away. I prefer my 1GB Sandisk Sansa m240 which is cheaper and sexier in my own opinion. Loading MP3s on it is also a lot easier due to the fact that I don't need any bloatware (iTunes) slowing down my box. Just open the drive associated with the player via explorer, copy your stuff over just like you would copy ordinary files, and unplug. Voila , you're done!


(via Technology filter)



Instant iSCSI By Open-E: Bringing Cheap SANs at your fingertips!

Everyone knows it, SANs (Storage area networks) are expensive and usually require specialized skills to implement. Open-E, a company that specialize in storage solutions, recently released iSCSI (Internet SCSI), a product that can turn any computer into a powerful and flexible SAN device. Toms hardware just pubbed this excellent review of the innovative solution.

"The iSCSI protocol is used to encapsulate native storage data into IP packages, which in turn allows for transferring this data over existing networks as if these were a local storage interface such as UltraSCSI. Due to the large variety of IP networks (PAN, WLAN, LAN by means of Ethernet or Fibre Channel, WAN, MAN and the Internet), a storage area network (SAN) based on the iSCSI protocol can technically bridge any distance, and it is only limited by the performance of the particular network(s) it uses."



Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Welcome To The Blogosphere: Population 27.2 Million And Growing

These days, everyone seems to be blogging: my wife, friends, colleagues and even a few of my neighbors. What has brought people to embrace this new phenomenon? Is it a fad, or will it stay in our lives forever? I know that personally, blogging brought me to explore technology in an all new way, and helped me improve my written English tremendously. The success of [Geeks Are Sexy] is also a reward by itself, encouraging me to continue writing new, unique and interesting (I hope) content. According to this InformationWeek article, a new blog is created every second and the phenomenon has grown 60 times larger than it was three years ago. The web now counts approximately 27.2 million blogs, most of them unknown, and this number is growing daily.

"In his periodic "State of the Blogosphere," published most recently on Monday, Sifry said that there are about 27.2 million blogs and 75,000 new ones created each day. At that rate, the blogosphere doubles about every 5.5 months."

Read more on InformationWeek.



Where Did Firefox Come From?

Hey Mozilla fans, ever wondered where Firefox came from? mozillazine.org published this excellent article providing an historical perspective on the evolution of Firefox through time. A very good read.

"Despite the failure of Netscape 6, engineers were still enthusiastic about continuing development. Now that Netscape could include its partner customizations — engineers called them “whore bars” — in its commercial tree, the engineering teams focused on improving the Open Source releases instead, hoping Mozilla would be the suite they had dreamt of building. Netscape branded products were largely ignored."



Monday, February 06, 2006

The IT crowd : IT humor on TV

If any of you guys are working in IT, you'll probably like what I'm going to show you. Check out those 2 episodes of a british show featuring a bunch of IT workers working for a big corporation. Good stuff!

Episode 1 and Episode 2

(edit: episode 3 available via torrent here and here or direct http download here)

(edit 2: replaced all the download links with new working ones)



Monday morning laugher therapy: Super Bowl Commercials

Whether you like football or not, everyone loves Super Bowl commercials. OcModShop is hosting around 40 of those via their forum, and, to my pleasure, they are in pretty high resolution (compared to what other sites are offering): 640X480. Be sure to look at the Budweiser streaker one, it's hilarious.

(edit: I had to switch the link to google video, the original host couldn't support the traffic)

Check it out.



Sunday, February 05, 2006

Geeks Are Sexy articles and reviews

Here's a recap of all original articles we've pubbed so far on [Geeks Are Sexy].

Hardware and Data Recovery

Security

Support

Software and Hardware reviews

Windows Tips and Tweaks

Blogging

Other