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PHP Trouble
In this weeks Security Alerts, we look at problems in PHP, Samba, mod_ssl, HP-UX's xfs and stmkfont, Ethereal, l2tpd, Domino, APC PowerChute Business Edition, Webmin, and Lexmark network printers.

( Permalink: PHP Trouble      Submitted by Noel Wed Jul 28, 2004 )

An informed rant about desktop UNIXes
Although free software operating systems are getting progressively easier to use, a great deal of work is still necessary. Most of us in the alternative OS community are aware of this but a refinement objective that still doesn't get enough attention is the "less is more" analogy. Sometimes it's better to remove (or at least centralize) functionality rather than toss it on top of the heap. The following osOpinion/osViews editorial contributor made this observation after attempting a Knoppix installation.

( Permalink: An informed rant about desktop UNIXes      Submitted by Kelly McNeill Wed Jul 28, 2004 )

PHP and ASP.NET Go Head-to-Head
"In this article I'll focus on PHP, the technology Oracle has chosen to incorporate into its products, and ASP.NET. I'll overview the various strengths and weaknesses of each, discussing in particular those areas that will help you make your decision on which to go with for your development project. There are a lot of factors to consider, and different projects may appeal to a different technology. In conclusion you'll find a point-by-point comparison in terms of price, speed and efficiency, security, cross-platform support, and the advantages of an open source solution."
Story

( Permalink: PHP and ASP.NET Go Head-to-Head      Submitted by Noel Wed Jul 28, 2004 )

Unix's founding fathers
"But the Labs were not only the birthplace, in this sense, of modern computer hardware. Much of modern software—computer programs and the special programming languages in which they are written—originated there too. Two instances in particular stand out: the programming language called C, which from the early 1970s has been perhaps the most popular programming language; and the Unix operating system, first booted up in 1971, and still going strong in everything from laptops to airline-reservation systems. Dennis Ritchie, who has worked at the Labs since 1967, was central to both projects. He is revered as the inventor of C, and, with Ken Thompson, as the co-inventor of Unix."
Story

( Permalink: Unix's founding fathers      Submitted by Noel Wed Jul 28, 2004 )

Creating Games with Pygame
"Python is an excellent language for rapid application development and prototyping. With Pygame, a wrapper built around SDL, the same can be true for games. In addition, because its built on top of Python and SDL, Pygame is highly portable. The only downside is it can be too slow for some computationally intensive types of games. If your game is too slow, the particular sub-routine(s) bringing down your execution speed can be rewritten in C/C++."
Story

( Permalink: Creating Games with Pygame      Submitted by Noel Wed Jul 28, 2004 )

Implementing Semaphores in the Shell
"The Init operation initializes the value of a semaphore. When a process needs a resource, the P operation (which comes from the word "proberen" and means "to test" in Dijkstra's native Dutch language) tests the value of the semaphore and decrements the value if a resource is available. When the value of a semaphore is zero, processes attempting to grab a resource must wait until one becomes available. The V operation (from "verhogen", which means "to increment") frees a resource by incrementing the value of the semaphore."
Story

( Permalink: Implementing Semaphores in the Shell      Submitted by Noel Wed Jul 28, 2004 )

AirTunin
"AirTunes is my new Most Favorite Thing in the World. It gets this prestigious title by allowing me to stream music from my PowerBook to my home stereo. No noticeable degradation in audio quality and it's terribly simple to use. When iTunes detects the unit, a little pop-up selector appears, allowing you to choose where you want the output. Your Mac's speakers are the default, while you can choose your Express unit to stream to it."
Story

( Permalink: AirTunin      Submitted by Noel Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Ruby/Tk Primer, Part 2
"This is the second article in a multi-part series in which we use Ruby and the Tk toolkit to develop a GUI front end for the cron task scheduler. In the first article, we learned the basics of programming in Ruby, and in the process we created the back end for the GUI we're working on. If you have no prior experience in Ruby, or if you need a refresher, please go back and read over the first tutorial. Otherwise, if you just need a copy of the code from the previous article, you can find it here."
Story

( Permalink: Ruby/Tk Primer, Part 2      Submitted by Noel Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Behind DragonFly BSD
"For years we had FreeBSD for performance, NetBSD for portability, and OpenBSD for security. Now a new project, focused on innovation, has worked very hard and is ready to release its first version: DragonFly BSD 1.0. Federico Biancuzzi interviewed some of these innovators to discuss their interesting points of view."
Story

( Permalink: Behind DragonFly BSD      Submitted by Noel Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Book Review: High Performance MySQL
"In the first chapters, the authors briefly review some basics of MySQL. The concepts they discuss are pertinent to database performance. Chapter 1 explains the configuration file my.cnf and how it can be set to improve a MySQL server. The authors also discuss the results of the SHOW VARIABLES statement and the SHOW PROCESSLIST statement so that an administrator can determine where the MySQL service is being slowed because of inefficiencies."
Story

( Permalink: Book Review: High Performance MySQL      Submitted by Noel Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Why PHP 5 Rocks!
"PHP 5 offers a completely different model of error checking than what's available in PHP 4. It's called exception handling. With exceptions, you're freed from the necessity of checking the return value of every function. Instead, you can separate programming logic from error handling and place them in adjoining blocks of code."
Story

( Permalink: Why PHP 5 Rocks!      Submitted by Noel Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Malware: fighting malicious code
This book presents a good start for getting knowledge about malicious code. It's clearly written, easy to understand and informative. story

( Permalink: Malware: fighting malicious code      Submitted by LogError Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Visualize your data with gnuplot
Turn your data and functions into professional-looking graphs with Gnuplot 4.0, a freely distributed plotting tool. In this article, get a hands-on guide to gnuplot that emphasizes the idioms you'll need to use this tool effectively.

( Permalink: Visualize your data with gnuplot      Submitted by Anonymous Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Microsoft Dividend is Good for Linux
You would think that having a monopoly in your business would have no comprehensible downsides to it, but Microsoft's monopoly, combined with the maturity of the computing marketplace means that its growth potential is practically nonexistent. Thad Phetteplace contributed the following editorial to osOpinion/osViews, which analyses Microsoft's recent dividend to its shareholders. His editorial draws parallels to Microsoft's new plateau-like growth strategy and new opportunities for Linux and open source software.

( Permalink: Microsoft Dividend is Good for Linux      Submitted by Kelly McNeill Tue Jul 27, 2004 )

Network Management App Adds Power to OS X
"Sustainable Softworks' IPNetMonitorX 1.4 is an all-purpose tool for troubleshooting network connections. Built primarily for network administrators and power users, it provides a wealth of information about how your computer connects to the outside world. Many of IPNetMonitorX's 17 tools are freely available as part of OS X, and you can access them via Terminal or the Network Utility application. So why would you pay for IPNetMonitorX? Because it does a fine job of unifying these tools within a consistent user interface. It also offers capabilities that the free tools don't. And IPNetMonitorX augments existing OS X tools. OS X's Traceroute tool allows only one type of trace, UDP; IPNetMonitorX adds two more types -- ICMP and Record Route, which give you the flexibility necessary to get through firewalls. OS X's version of the Port Scan tool lets you conduct only TCP scans, but IPNetMonitorX lets you conduct TCP and UDP scans."
Story

( Permalink: Network Management App Adds Power to OS X      Submitted by Noel Mon Jul 26, 2004 )

Featured Articles:
Unix and Linux Podcasting Guide

Expect and SSH

The Linux Enterprise Cluster

Book Review: Podcasting: Do-It-Yourself Guide

Remote Backups With Rsync

Weakness and Security

Essential CVS

Spring Into Technical Writing

Other News:
Biodiesel Resources

Older News

Application Security - Next Layer of Protection
(Tue Apr 13, 2004)

A Manifesto for Collaborative Tools
(Tue Apr 13, 2004)

Testing frameworks in Python
(Tue Apr 13, 2004)

PCQuest Linux 2004
(Tue Apr 13, 2004)

Confessions of a Slacker
(Tue Apr 13, 2004)

Howto: White Box Linux
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

The PuTTY SSH client on Nokia Series 60 phone
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

GNOME 2.6
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

Compilers, Binaries, Partitions
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

Interview: Ryan McBride
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

Linux breathes new life into old hardware
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

Is there a rootkit hunter in your arsenal?
(Mon Apr 12, 2004)

Sun shelves UltraSPARC V
(Sun Apr 11, 2004)

Creating PDF files with ps2pdf
(Sun Apr 11, 2004)

Tutorial: Setting Up Samba 3.x
(Sun Apr 11, 2004)

Addressing Address Books For Linux
(Sun Apr 11, 2004)

Love/Hate Relationship with Mozilla Mail 1.6
(Sun Apr 11, 2004)

Biostar iDEQ 200N small form-factor PC case
(Sat Apr 10, 2004)

Creating an initrd image on Debian GNU/Linux
(Sat Apr 10, 2004)

Linux on Desktop Making Big Strides
(Sat Apr 10, 2004)

A quick look at the SUSE 9.1 beta
(Sat Apr 10, 2004)

Power-using Eclipse 3.0M8 with Templates
(Sat Apr 10, 2004)

Securing Microsoft Groupware with Unix Part 2
(Fri Apr 9, 2004)

Wal-Mart teams with Sun on Linux PCs
(Fri Apr 9, 2004)

The Pros & Cons of Ethical Hacking
(Fri Apr 9, 2004)

Open Group and Apple about UNIX
(Fri Apr 9, 2004)

The Issue of Compliance
(Fri Apr 9, 2004)

Looking at the New Gnome 2.6
(Fri Apr 9, 2004)

Interview With CARP developer Ryan McBride
(Thu Apr 8, 2004)

Embedded Systems Conference
(Thu Apr 8, 2004)

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Copyright 1999-2005 Noel Davis. Noel also runs web sites about sailing and kayaking.
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