MWalker's blog

Netbooks: A Security Risk?

Netbooks: A Security Risk? - The proliferation of low-end netbook may pose a new threat to the cybersecurity of users. [Internet.com Security]

VPS and Authenticated Sendmail

I had a requirement to create a sendmail server that can authenticate a user and send mail from a remote location.  First off, I needed to figure out where to host this solution.  By choosing an inexpensive hosted linux VPS, I can scale my virtual server and have some more flexibility over the configuration.  Also by having a dedicated VPS I will not have to worry about impacting other app and software configurations as I work.

Utility - Linux "screen" command

Screen is a powerful tool for SysAdmins and Developers working at the command prompt of a *nix system.  Think of screen as an "ALT-TAB" in Windows, switching between DOS command prompts.

TidBit - Sync iCal to Exchange via Entourage

I had a user that really did not want to use Entourage.  They prefered to use iCal and Mail.  IMAP'ing to the Exchange server was not a big issue, but the Calendaring and Free/Busy data is left out.  Sure there are 3rd party apps that can be found, but we already had MacOffice installsed. 

Review - Dell E-Port Replicator

Dell E-port Replicator

A little while back we began ordering the Dell Mobile Precision M2400 laptops when Dell discontinued the M2300 model.  While the M2400 has grown on me for its sleek and simple design, I was disappointed it was a complete design overhaul and required new accessories.

Gadget - USB Laptop KVM Switch with File Transfer

IOGear USB KVM

Ever wish you could control that second PC under your desk without a second keyboard, monitor & mouse?  Or have a bulky/ugly KVM with big bundle of cables?  Or are testing something a bit crazy and do not want to jump from PC to PC?

Terry Childs - Good or Evil SysAdmin?

Just some  thoughts on the Terry Childs situation and SysAdmins in general.  Terry Childs is the SysAdmin arrested on July 12, 2008 for disrupting San Francisco’s wide-area network and is currently sitting in the City of San Francisco’s county jail.

(1) Every good SysAdmin has to be a bit of "evil".  Many plot lines out there describe the good guy turning into a bad guy to learn how to defeat the evil organization.  Same concept applies to network security.  No one knows the flaws and holes better than the SysAdmin.  Thinking like a potential hacker, the SysAdmin can take a proactive approach to prevention and more effectively investigate suspicious behaviour.  That being said, what the SysAdmin does not know can be just as dangerous.

Google Groping for Solutions to Gmail Outage

Google Groping for Solutions to Gmail Outage - The popular free email service is restored yet some concerns remain. [Internet.com Security]

SaaS / Hosted Solutions / Cloud Computing are a risk/reward situation.  Some people pick a methodology and stick to it.  There are pros & cons with each.  Think about the solution and the consequences of your choice.  Lets take email hosting as a good example.  Assuming you do not want to run your own mail system, there are several options.

Review - Dell Mobile Precision M2400

Dell Mobile Precision M2400

Summary

Dell refers to the M2400 as an "High-performance workstation performance in an ultra-mobile package" laptop.  The M2400 features a Core2 Duo processor and advanced OpenGL graphics in a < 5lb laptop.

Checking Drupal Status with Nagios and WebInject

Summary

A few weeks back I found a post on the Drupal forums about monitoring the status report page with Nagios and Webinject.  Having lots of practice with Nagios and Webinject, I knew this was possible but noone had provided an example.  So I finally got around to creating the Webinject script today and posted it.  Below is the complete process including the Nagios info I used.