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Thoughts on the latest Microsoft Worm (Part 1)

SL Baur (19540) writes | more than 3 years ago

User Journal 1

I wrote this in 1992 for rec.humor.funny. I've long lost my "original" digital copy, but as Linus says, real men don't make backups, they let the internet archive their work for them. Or, something like that.

I wrote this in 1992 for rec.humor.funny. I've long lost my "original" digital copy, but as Linus says, real men don't make backups, they let the internet archive their work for them. Or, something like that.

Path: athena.cs.uga.edu!emory!swrinde!zaphod.mps.ohio-state.edu!uunet.ca!xenitec!looking!funny-request
From: baur@mdcbbs.com (Steve Baur)
Newsgroups: rec.humor.funny
Subject: NEED HELP FAST !!!!!!!!!
Keywords: original, computer, smirk
Message-ID: [S425.63b1@looking.on.ca]
Date: 12 Jul 92 23:30:04 GMT
Lines: 58
Approved: funny@clarinet.com

This composition is original, although the subject is not.
--------------------------- Cut Here---------------------------------
Newsgroups: comp.unix.questions
Subject: NEED HELP FAST !!!!!!!!!
From: cs245@cs.somewhere.edu (The Unknown Hacker)
Date: 7 Apr 92 12:55:45 EDT
Organization: UNIX Guru's R Us!

HI, EVERYBODY!!!!
Sorry if this is a FAQ, but I've heard that a FAQ is something
everybody already knows, but since I don't know the answer to this
everybody doesn't know it, so it can't be a FAQ, so here I go ...

I've just created about the most Awesome change directory program ever
written. If it doesn't find the target directory through an
exhaustive CDPATH search, it uses the most sophisticated spelling
corrector (based on a thorough analysis of Webster's on-line
dictionary, and a list of the 1000 most common directory names on Unix
systems throughout the world) to try to find a match that way. If
that fails, then it tries to create the directory, and if that fails,
it opens /dev/uri-geller, and reads the mind of the invoker to try to
figure out what to do. It executes with almost 0 impact on system
resources, and is most truly the finest/tightest code ever to grace
the memory of a computer.

The only problem is that it doesn't work. No matter how I've tried,
once I've done that last chdir (and I've tried doing several identical
chdir(2)'s in a row to see if that would make the directory change
more "sticky" but that didn't work) I always end up where I started in
the shell I started my program in. I've tried setting the PWD, and
CWD variables with putenv(3), but that doesn't seem to have any effect.

What it really seems to me, is I need some way of telling the shell what
directory it's supposed to be in when my program is done executing.
Put more simply, I need a way of modifying the environment of a parent
process.

E-mail responses only. There's too much noise on this bboard for me to
be able to read it. And HURRY!!! I need to turn this project in by 5pm
tonight !!!!

  +----------------------------------------------------------------------------+
  | _ /| |
  | \'o.O' UNIX Guru in training |
  | =(___)= |
  | U Joe Programmer |
  | ACK.. THPPT!!!! cs245@cs.somewhere.edu |
  | |
  +----------------------------------------------------------------------------+

--
- Steve Baur@mdcbbs.com (236/607 4/1/92)
--

This is obviously a joke. But it also illustrates a fundamental difference between Unix and most other systems. Unix has process isolation and without an extreme amount of cooperation between processes, it is impossible without system software bugs to modify the environment of another process without its permission. This is A Good Thing.

Commentary in Part 2.

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Web 2.0 is NOT a good thing (1)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 3 years ago | (#33533198)

I sure miss the days when everything was an 80 column glass tty, or a software equivalent. The joke message isn't going to look right unless you have an absurdly wide browser window. Sigh.

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