Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Learning so much

So I read Hacking for Dummies, 2nd edition. And I didn't feel like I learned as much as I probably should have. I also read it differently than I'm reading the 3rd edition. Most of what I did learn in the 2nd edition, I think I forgot, or just filed in the back of my head.

I'm actually learning this stuff this time. Not just reading it but looking into things and trying to figure the things out when they don't work instead of shrugging and saying ok next.

Some of it is, oh yeah, I remember that. It's just a much better read this time. Wish I could read more often and faster than I currently am, and I could play with things.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

scratching my head

Sometimes, no matter what, you're left scratching your head. Tonight is one of those time. See, I'm a time addict. I have been for years. I constantly want to know what time it is. I usually have ntp running on my computers.

Turns out the latest install of my laptop doesn't seem to. Yet it kept it's time pretty current. Maybe there is something hidden somewhere in KDE / the system I couldn't find. Anyway. I installed NTP, and made sure it was set as a client. it was only about 91 seconds off compared to the server I used to do an ntpdate against.

However, that's not what made me scratch my head. I spend most of my time on Red Hat based systems at work, and do more work on them than I do on my boxes at home. Even though every computer runs Linux (Debian) at home. One thing I'm used to, and type mostly out of habit is the service command for starting and stopping daemon processes.

I have never seen this work on Debian. Until tonight. I don't know how many times I've typed service something restart or stop or start, and have the system tell me service (the command) not found. But tonight, out of habit I typed it and it worked. After I hit enter I remembered, not on a work system. won't work, then saw the message that was displayed... So now I'm scratching my head wondering if I found it somewhere and installed it, or what.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Deleted the last post.

Things have gone strange in my world again.

Not going to go into details. Just.... Its all good with gravy. I'd say what my best friend says in situations like this, but I try to keep it closer to pg around here. Not always. Just all good. Strange but all good.

Monday, February 8, 2010

hmmm.... again

I've gotten my current work to do list down to 3 items today. 2 of which I could do and are both rather easy.

One I'll do.

The other requires driving to another site, so I might put that off, I have until Friday to have it done.

The last item is waiting on things beyond my sphere of influence right now. I could probably go take care of, but would require driving to a 3rd site, and dealing with scorn for being at the site by the people who work there. They don't like it when I show up.

I'd love to read today, work on that book some more... but I'm fuzzed out from a bout of insomnia last night. Less than 3 hours sleep, and I'm feeling it now.

Saturday, February 6, 2010


Still have too much to do.

Work is getting harder. Having more and more thrown at me, while having to go back and work on or over see things from people who are "trying" to help me. I do appreciate the thought and sentiment, but when they end up increasing my work load, it's not helping. I've got things prioritized on my list of what I'm working on. If it needs to go sooner explain why you think so to me, and I'll adjust it's priority.

I started a weekly (4 weeks) Python class. I did learn some things, but I'd rather be doing it in a different way. So far all we did was print hello for the code writing. I was told up front that this was more of a class for helping people get more out of the Maker Space (they call it a hacker space) by giving them some tools to help them with their projects. I however just learn better in a class environment than I do self-study (sad as that is to say). I do think the better way to teach the coding is to show us how to write it, but mostly we've used stuff the instructor has written and he's talked about what is going on. Just not my learning style I guess.

I picked up Gray Hat Python, at least the digital version of Safari Books, and read some of that last night. Starts off saying that it's designed for Windows users, and that's not what I use. Sigh.

I've never really had much of an interest in Python, but it seems to be the current popular language for hackers. So learn it I shall. I still need to get back to learning Perl. I start but never finish (been trying for 10 years now). Remember what I said about not being good at self study. A Gray Hat Perl book would be nice. More incentive to learn it.

I'm way behind on where I wanted to be reading the Hacking For Dummies book. I actually wanted to be finishing it up and writing the review by now, but between work, and other things. I'm just not there.

I'm finding it harder to focus in general right now. Not sure why. But the computer has played a nice sized part in the distraction game. Wanting to do too many things at one time hasn't helped either. Finite amount of time, with an infinite number of things I want to do. I haven't quite gotten to the point where I've tried to schedule things, but I know when I do, do that, it doesn't work anyway.

I'm also way out of shape. Dave "The Iron Tamer" Whitley has declared February Inter-galactic Swing month. My goal is 2800 swings this month. Increasing the weight from 16kg to 32kg over the course of the 28 days. I'm 5 days behind so far. My goal was to do 100 swings a day, without putting the kettlebell down. I tried it today, and only got to 50 swings in the first set, and 25 in the second 2 sets. I used to be able to do 100 at a time without a problem. But it seems those days are behind and in front of me, instead of being where I am.

Today was also the first day in weeks where I didn't wake up exhausted. Which is funny considering I kept waking up during the night, and then had to fight to get back to sleep. Last few weeks, I'd go to bed, and when the alarm would go off, I'd be so tired I'd hit snooze forever.

Now that I've cleared my mind some in this long ramble, I'm going to try and focus on the reading I'm behind on.

Monday, February 1, 2010

sometimes its hard to be ethical

I was doing a work related windows install over the weekend. Since it was a laptop with a wireless network card, and windows, it popped up the different access points around me. Most were 2wire, or 2wire with their names changed (I remember there being more 2wires systems (AT&T) before).

There were some intersting names. One the default linksys name (but was locked down) one with the person's name "MzSomethingorother" (and not locked down). One even had wireless with the apartment number behind it (Wifi1234)

One however, was listed as "We are not Scared". It was showing locked. But no idea what kind of protection, wep, wpa, wpa2, etc.

I kept staring at it, and so wanted to try and pen-test it. Just to see how well protected they were to toss out a "challenge" like that. However that wouldn't have been ethical.

I did take the higher path and not messed with it, but I'd still like to find out if there are people in the area who have taken the lower path, and have gone after it.