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UCB, USC To Build (And Hack) A Model Internet

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the smaller-scale dept.

The Internet 218

darksoulz writes "Associated Press stories from and have an interesting report today. It appears that the U.S. Government has given a $5.5 million grant to the University of California, Berkley and the University of Southern California so that they can build a model of the internet, so they can hack it. They are trying to find better defenses against hacking, without breaking the real Internet. The first phase is scheduled to be completed by February."

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omg2 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396566)

Oups ! Adolf Hitroll did it again ?

Re:omg2 (-1)

Adolf Hitroll (562418) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396642)

Hey ! second time in a row.
The CLIT own your flacid asses !

Hack This! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396567)

Frost Piss

Re:Hack This! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396605)

Surgeon General's Warning:

Failing to get the first post may cause homoerotic behavior toward slashdot editors. Slashdot trolls contain carbon monoxide.

w00t (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396568)


fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396569)

Wait ... what?

I haven't been with my girlfriend in over a month (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396570)

But I'm practicing premature ejaculation by getting the first post!

I for one (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396573)

welcome our new internet hacking overlords!

pr0n (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396574)

pr0n, haha, +1 funny.

5.5 squintillions (0)

maharg (182366) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396575)

someone's gonna get a shiny new network outta this

First Post! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396577)

Woot! Frist Pr0$t!!!11!111!one!11!

Is it dead already? (0)

Rinikusu (28164) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396581)

Man, we already know what came out of Berkeley before is a resounding success (see here [] ). Is it time to have a stillborn?

(dammit, it's supposed to be a joke and I'm just not funny today. grrr.)

Re:Is it dead already? (5, Funny)

nate1138 (325593) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396735)

My old roommate used to say that only two good things ever came from Berkeley:
  • BSD
  • LSD

Of course he went to Cal-Tech (Which I've always heard was a trade school for surfers ;-)

HOWTO (-1, Troll)

superdan2k (135614) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396586)

How to secure the Internet without breaking it: kick all Microsoft products off it.

Good (5, Interesting)

delirium28 (641609) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396593)

This is an intersting approach, but if they keep this a "closed system" (i.e. a hidden internet), then how much real "hacking" can they expect? Are they going to use honeypot data? Will they expose this system externally for real "hackers" to play with? Just my $0.02 worth.

Re:Good (2, Insightful)

Tin Foil Hat (705308) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396686)

Will they expose this system externally for real "hackers" to play with?

If they do, I'm sure slashdot will be more than happy to help with stress testing.

Re:Good (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396831)

I think the real point here is to make a testbed where they can unleash worms and then try different techniques to try and trace, contain, stop, and prevent them. Not to actually attract hackers. They will be the hackers, do the hacking, etc. Also to play with DDOS attacks and whatnot, without saturating any existing networks. I think the operative term is hacking a model 'internet' not a machine on the internet.

great... (-1, Troll)

phillk6751 (654352) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396594)

so now we're teaching college students how to hack?

...first post :-p

Re:great... (1)

InfiniteWisdom (530090) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396681)

Hell no. More likely grad students. In case you haven't heard of these creatures... grad students are a mechanism for turning coffee into graphs.

Teaching hacking = Yes (1)

The Jonas (623192) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396854)

so now we're teaching college students how to hack?

Yes, an article [] from a few months ago has some info.

Watch for the lawsuits now (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396597)

Watch for someone to sue these guys under DMCA and government hacking laws because they create their own net and hack it.

(Just like you'll have a few lawyers salivating over the lawsuits if someone creates their own copy protection method for CD's and cracks it during testing. DMCA!!! DMCA!!!)

Re:Watch for the lawsuits now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396658)

Unless they are like Fox and they plan on suing themselves then what would the problem be. (I know Fox wasn't really suing itself). Oh wait. Did you mean - frist DMCA prost?

How long (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396598)

How long till RIAA tries to get it shut down>?

Re:How long (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396809)

what the hell does the riaa have to do with an internet local to berkeley? absolutely nothing.

Re:How long (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396887)

When did this stop them before?

Wow (1)

beady (710116) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396619)

How useful it was to have two completely unique articles, both of which shed light on the issue in a completely different way to the other...

Weak Article (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396629)

The articles (which are identical) don't go too much into details. What exactly are they doing that is going to cost $5.5 million dollars? Are they planning on making it a coast to coast thing? Isn't the internet just a big ass network?

Re:Weak Article (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396858)

you don't need any distance to make an internet. yes, an internet is a big ass network. my guess is they'll create a bunch of "little" networks which will be mock autonomous systems, and connect them together.

Planned this for a while (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396630)

They've been planning this for a while, but only just received the funding to implement. An overview of the previous ideas and potential implementations is available from WildPuma Technologies, Inc. [] , one of the collaborators in this project.

Re:Planned this for a while (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396701)

Nice link, thanks!

Are they doing the FULL internet here? (5, Funny)

paroneayea (642895) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396634)

I mean, will sixty percent of it be model porn?

Re:Are they doing the FULL internet here? (2, Funny)

October_30th (531777) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396650)

They need spammers too.

Re:Are they doing the FULL internet here? (2, Funny)

phlyingpenguin (466669) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396855)

Good point actually. They can model what happens when the registrar hijacks the internet with a friendly service that comes up if you mistype a domain, and break all spam reporting.

Re:Are they doing the FULL internet here? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396667)

That's soooo funny! OMG, sir, how do you do it? HAHAHAHAHA!!! Pardon me whilst I larf myself into a brain hemmorage. MAUWAWAHAHAHA! Wow, what a witty /. poster you truly are.

No. Really. You're so funny.

Re:Are they doing the FULL internet here? (1)

paroneayea (642895) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396763)

Thank you. I thought your rather immature comment was quite funny as well.

Look. The thought ran across my head, and it certainly has its merits. Are they going to represent content in this model internet? Are they just going to represent the servers themselves? So the thought lead to that post. If you don't like it, fine. But you really don't need to be so childish in saying so.

Free Porn to them (1)

lb746 (721699) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396834)

This sounds like a Utopia internet, free porn, disconection from the rest of the net... What are they going to do next, give the free caffeine and each gets a new PC to use on this internet?

That's it, I'm getting out my transfer papers, USC here I come!!

Re:Model Porn? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396895)

As in Lego^wBlock Structure Porn [] ?

Tin foil hat or not? (1, Insightful)

grub (11606) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396636)

The research is funded by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Homeland Security.

If they find fundamental flaws in the systems will they keep them secret to shore up US networks while leaving foreign networks susceptable? It could be a great tool for "cyberwarfare" against EvilDoers...

Re:Tin foil hat or not? (1)

Tin Foil Hat (705308) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396780)

They could try, but considering the liberal nature of Berkely in general, it's probably doomed to failure. This is the university that gave us BSD after all, and continues to be a force in open source technology. Besides, it is actually in the government's best interest to help make the internet more secure worldwide. Attacks on computer networks in foreign countries could hurt the U.S., especially if they interfere with our interests abroad...

Oh wait, did you say "Dept. of Homeland Security"? Aw fuck. We're all screwed.

grad school... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396649)

I know where I'm going to apply for grad school.

Would love to be hacking a model Internet.

I'll do it for 1 million (5, Funny)

the_skywise (189793) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396653)

Why do you need 5 million for that? How many computers can it possibly take? 50? 100? Let's say 100. That's $100,000 (and that's generous these days) Let's say $200,000 to lease building space and power for 2 years (also generous) and let's pay 3 professors part time, plus 10 students work study wages (Figure $50,000 per professor and $20,000 per student...$350,000)

What do we got?
$100,000 parts
$200,000 space
$350,000 labor

What's the other ~5 million going for?

Oh wait... they must need Windows licenses and full copies of Outlook to properly test the hacks...

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (5, Funny)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396695)

What's the other ~5 million going for?

Mountain Dew doesn't come cheaply, my friend....

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (1)

rwiedower (572254) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396705)

They're clearly trying to jumpstart the economy...via targeted "grants" to struggling IT network infrastructure companies.

VMWare (1)

JonnyRo (636779) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396761)

These people should get set up with vmware, it might save them some money.

It would definately cut down on cable wiring costs.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (-1, Flamebait)

segmond (34052) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396828)



Nah, they don't need routers,
Nah, they don't need firewalls.
Yup, they can have MacOSX, Win2000, WinNT, Solaris, HPUX, Linux, all BSD, VMS, and all major OS on 50 computers.
They should also go to ebay and buy base 10 ethernet cards, cuz what is the use of 100 or fiber networks. I mean the internet is not like that.
Redundant servers? Nah! They don't need that, cuz the servers on the internet are not like that!
Backup servers? Whoops! They don't need that.

All in one building? Right, cuz that's how the internet is.


Re:I'll do it for 1 million (1)

hatrisc (555862) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396940)

All in one building? Right, cuz that's how the internet is.

the only real problem with it _NOT_ being in one building is simulating different propagation times, data rates, latency, etc... . However, (i'm just guessing here) the connections between autonomous systems on the internet must be pretty damn fast, because most of the "speed" problems at home for me deal with _MY_ connection to my isp. Temple University being it's own autonomous system, most of the problems here, deal with the internal network, not the connection to the rest of the Internet.

So, I really don't see why this couldn't be simulated in one building. Please correct me if I'm missing something.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (0)

musikit (716987) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396829)

they did say in the article that they were shooting for 1k machines so your figures are slightly off 1,000,000 for parts 200,000 for space 350,000 laber ------------------- 1.55 million.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396871)

Sorry but you're pricing things according to how much they look like they'd cost to you. Not how much they'd cost to the people who are actually buying them.

If you get paid $50,000 a year by your employer (before taxes), how much do you think you cost to your employer? $50,000? Ha. Try $100k. They play various kinds of employment taxes, insurance, maybe a bit to a personnel management company... a good rule of thumb is that you cost 2x your salary to an employer. (Plus, you're taxed again on your end: a 50k salary means your take-home pay is 35k or whatever.)

Also, at a university, you have what's called "overhead". If a research group gets a $1million grant, how much of that grant money do you actually see? Well, at my university, the answer is something like 45%. The university takes a huge rakeoff of 55% to pay for buildings, infrastructure (e.g. networking, plumbing), deans, blah blah... that's where the university's income comes from.

So, I'm sorry to tell you, that if Fry's sells a computer for $1500, you need a much bigger grant to buy it. Try $6k.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (1)

TnkMkr (666446) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396891)

try more like 100k per tenured professor, 50k per non-tenured prof. and more along the lines of 35k per student. 20k is just what they get paid out to live on the other 15k goes toward paying off their tuition.

you'll have 2-3 tenured prof. running the show and 4-5 non-tenured profs. working the show. With 5-6 Grad students per prof doing all the research.

Your, labor costs are a bit more if you look at it that way. And this project will not only go 1 year... sounds more like an ongoing thing.


Not to mention... (1)

huckda (398277) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396938)

they'll need exchange...IIS...
perhaps some huge bandwidth...
powdered donuts, guarana(beats the hell outta Mt. Dew), and (with machine to make said drink), and all the neato little geek trinkets and apparrel.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396939)

To properly simulate the internet youre going to need alot more than off the shelf PC's. Youre talking Many different types of hardware, including high end enterprise stuff. Network switches of all types, from dlink home routers to mind bogglingly priced cisco stuff, and people to configure ALL of it. To do it right, youre not going to throw a grad student a cisco manual and have him learn by trial and error. Same w/ software configurations, apache to IIS to Websphere, all kinds of stuff to properly simulate it. Expensive stuff. Ok... now topologies.. ATM, ethernet, fiber, T1's, whatever topologies cable networks use... all that good stuff. You completely neglected these costs, and the monthly costs of running these lines.

Youre prob going to want more than 100 pc's also. some to mimick home lans on dsl, others cable, others behind a corporate network, others exposed right on the net, etc. These are just back of the envelope calculations.

your labor costs were not too bad, though I think youre still under in assuming 3 professors part time. I would think more like 3 full time for something like this. To do this correctly though, they will also need industry professionals configuring the higher end stuff.

As you can see, not nearly as simple as it sounded eh?

Re:I'll do it for 1 million rant. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7397027)

I wanted to seperate my ranting from my somewhat more constructive post, but the lack of business and common sense in the industry has really been getting to me lately. Dont get me wrong, I have seen some stupid moves by managers, but the extent to which engineers think they know the one true way to do everything and that they and only they understand what someone is REALLY trying to ask has just been pissing me off. Managers got there for a reason, and its not because of their holier than thou attitudes. Sure, some get lazy and dont keep up w/ the technology, but most do.

Issues are not all black and white, Linux is not necessarily the best thing for all or even most users, regardless of price. MS is not necessarily an evil company in every respect. This general hostile attitude really needs to change. The lack of interpersonal skills has long been noted in the industry, but I really think its time that something be done about it. Just take a friggen second to try and see the other person's point of view, understand where they are coming from, why they see their decision as best, then try to argue against it. Storming out of a meeting calling your manager and coworkers idiots isnt going to get you out of that cramped 3 walled cube.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396941)

Umm, maybe I'm off base, but what about the "Internet" equipment. The comptuers, staff, etc. are rather uselss without the "network".

Throw a couple GSR's, OSR's and SONET devices in the picture to more fully represent a network and the cost easily hits or surpasses $5 mil.

How typical to assume that everything is free and can be done for less.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (1)

leerpm (570963) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396959)

What's the other ~5 million going for?

Maybe routers, switches, hubs, fiber optics gear. You know, the stuff that makes it a network instead of a bunch of computers sitting on a warehouse floor.

Re:I'll do it for 1 million (1)

bizitch (546406) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396970)

What about all the time needed for the all important LAN Party "stress" test ;)

Routers (0, Redundant)

bwindle2 (519558) | more than 10 years ago | (#7397002)

What about routers, switches, etc? If it is doing to be the Internet, two switches connected via a crossover cable won't cut it. I bet they need LOTS of routers, running BGP/etc, to simulate things like DDoSes (and their detection and tracing).

um? (1)

jdoe407 (651709) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396654)

How the hell would you make a 'model' of the internet. It's just a bunch of linked up servers, is it not? Hell, just run all the services on the same box and 'hack' it remotely or locally... I don't see where the 5.5 million comes into play unless they are going to make a 'model' of a big lanparty...

Re:um? (1)

UrgleHoth (50415) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396703)

Maybe a full scale model, like comedian Steven Wright's map of the US [] (#18).

Re:um? (1)

hatrisc (555862) | more than 10 years ago | (#7397013)

no, the Internet is a bunch of autonomous networks, connected together through the use of routers. to simulate it, you would have to connect a bunch of little networks (mock autonomous systems, which are internally routed using RIP or some other internal network routing protocol) with each other in which traffic is routed to the mock AS's by something like BGP or another protocol.

or something like that...

Sheesh (2, Funny)

ItWasThem (458689) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396656)

So basically they just spent $5.5 million built the worlds most expensive intranet? Man with that kind of money I would've rather had the government buy 2 more toilet seats.

Re:Sheesh (1)

Jrod1080 (463362) | more than 10 years ago | (#7397034)

one huge difference between the Internet and a big intranet is that there is no one administrative domain controlling the Internet. You have dozens of backbone providers, and thousands of smaller ISPs, all in a competitive environment. This competitive environment means that ISPs and backbone providers are not all sharing useful info. It would be a hell of a lot easier stopping DDOS attacks if one network admin could control all the routers in the network. this is true for an intranet, but sure isn't true for the Internet.

Model of the Internet? (1)

Karamchand (607798) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396666)

Since Internet is quite a proper name nowadays I wouldn't call it "model of the internet". It's just a simple WAN intended as a test-bed for various incidents which can happen on the Internet.

creators build, (& rescue) model planet/popula (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396669)

you won't be needing any additional hypothetical .connections, or even a model rocket cam, to smell which way the wwwinds of change are bullowing?

mynuts won: still bucking the felonious georgewellian fuddite /. corepirate nazi ?pr? ?firm? scriptdead hypenosys 'moderation' FUDgeLickers.

the lights are coming up now.

tell 'em robbIE?

diversity (1)

mirko (198274) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396671)

how do they think they'll reproduce the Internet's first characteristics : diversity, with a budget that might at most buy them 10000 computers ?

Re:diversity (1)

technoid_ (136914) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396733)


Re:diversity (1)

twiddlingbits (707452) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396949)

Model most of the "user nodes" on the Internet in software on a Beowolf Cluster or zSeries mainframe. Buy a couple 100 server boxes, put them here and there in places on campus, network them with fiber, add routers and you got most of what you need. $5M seems a bit high but remember there has to be a nice profit for the University (at least $1M), and lots of grad students to pay a stiped and tuition for, plus equipment costs. Content is free, they can host a few Blogs, some p0rn, and some chat rooms to get traffic moving.

I smell something . . . (1, Funny)

GMontag (42283) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396682)

That smell is REWARD [] !

$250,000 = lifetime supply of cheetoes and pr0n!

Re:I smell something . . . (1)

Walterk (124748) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396894)

$250,000 = lifetime supply of cheetoes and pr0n!

Not bloody likely. More like a week supply.

Re:I smell something . . . (1)

GMontag (42283) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396967)

But my pr0n is free!

In ten years... (5, Insightful)

sandbenders (301132) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396702)

In ten years everyone will wonder why USC and Berkley produced all of the decade's best crackers. This project will result in three things:

1. Good dissertations for CS PhDs.
2. More secure software, which will rarely be implemented and even more rarely be implemented well.
3. A whole bunch of research assistants who think they are l33t h4x0rs. And some of them will be right.

Re:In ten years... (1)

scudco (644276) | more than 10 years ago | (#7397033)

Oh believe me, every cs major here at USC already believes they are 1337 h4x0rz. I'm no cracker but I'm pretty sure UNIX is a good operating system to know before declaring oneself a 1337 h4x0r. Most students here don't even know what bash or csh stand for... much less what they are.

What is this? (1)

bobthemuse (574400) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396706)

A "model" of the internet? Are they referring to an electronic model of the physical structure? A very large LAN? $5.5 mil will buy a lot of hardware.

Me thinks this will pay for $500k worth of cisco gear and workstations for the modem, and $5 mil worth of 'testing labor'?


Spl0it (541008) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396708)

Didn't we discuss this the other day???

Trial Run (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396720)

It seems to me that the current government would like nothing more than to be able to control the flow of information in the internet.God forbid we ever learn the truth about anything or question the
'facts' as presented.This is one area if not the last that any government should stay the fuck out of.I'm a little more than leary about a trial run on a model,it sounds a bit like the "model terrorist
attack" on the pentagon on or right before 9/11.
I would rather see a global non-profit entity tend to the garden rather than the vermin.

PLEASE oh please oh please! (2, Funny)

MoxCamel (20484) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396723)

I want on that internet! This one sucks, please oh please for the sake of all that is good and fermented, let me off this one! :)

Re:PLEASE oh please oh please! (2, Funny)

mblase (200735) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396874)

You don't want that; it's designed for hacking, so their model version of Slashdot is probably made up entirely of BugTraq articles, Microsoft exploits and lame "F1rst p0st!" comments.

Re:PLEASE oh please oh please! (1)

ComaVN (325750) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396976)

How is that different than this one?

I probably just didn't get the joke or something.

Break the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396732)

Someone giving out money is a fool, it only stands to reason that if the intenet was created to survive a nuclear Holocaust, that, being World War 3, that it could probably survive some Script kiddy college punks using others software to hack it. Break the internet,what fools to think that they can do such an enormous task...what a TOTAL WASTE of money... -JC

Re:Break the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396777)

No kidding, your right on the money...

The real hackers (1)

lb746 (721699) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396739)

What made them pick those schools to do this? Did they do a survey or check for a high quantity of hackers in those schools? They should just open it publicly and let people take trys at it and submit logs of what they did. "Open-Source Internet"

Imagine... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396760)

A beowulf cluster of those!

"Berkley" (0)

e40 (448424) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396766)

It's Berkeley. Cripes.

Simulating current internet activity (2, Interesting)

Alystair (617164) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396767)

I wonder how they will be going around to simulate the current p2p and other activity on it...

Questions remain (4, Interesting)

bwaynef (692229) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396770)

I think this is a straight-forward approach but there are problems that need to be addressed.

  • How will they implement the latencies and delays that commonly befall the internet.
  • Where will the millions of unique traffic-data originate.
  • How will they mimic the different styles of hacking.

It would be interesting to see how they implement this network.

  • Are they going to be two seperate networks.
  • Will they be one network connected over an existing internet link?
  • If they connect over an existing internet link how will they deal with that connection as its no longer a simulation

I don't think that we have a requirement to see any of the information that I've questioned above but this information could lead /. to be more informed on this situation.

Re:Questions remain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396877)

1. Swithes, bridges and Routers all add latencies, it's inherent int there function, whether used for a 5 node network or a internet backbone.

2. There are not millions of unique tracffic hitting a route, only data that is routed to it.

3.Brute force or dictionary, code loopholes ,, seems easy enough...

1a The internet is made up off multiple logical networks, so yes any simulation would also have multiple networks.
1b No, i should need to explain this.
1c Leasedline, Permanent dedicated circuit.

Just pretend don't hate me... (3, Funny)

Dareth (47614) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396785)

... but can I be the RIAA and sue all the users of your model internet???

This is in the name of science!

I won't be real bad, just demand they hand over all their old video cards when they get new ones.

I'm still running my old Voodoo 3 3500, yeah baby it still ROCKS!

break the internet? (1)

jdoe407 (651709) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396789)

"Berkeley engineer said they can't do experiments on the real Internet, because they can't afford to break it."

Al Gore would not like that

Is it me... (0, Offtopic)

laslo2 (51210) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396804)

...or is that the *shortest* article I've ever read? Sheesh, the copyright is almost longer than the content.

OK, I'm trolling. Get over it. ;)

Partly Completed Already (1, Funny)

wthynot (570397) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396810)

I hear they already have the free pr0n servers up and running. Just waiting for the rest of the system to be built. ;)

Quick question: (2, Insightful)

mblase (200735) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396820)

I know you can hack a server, but how exactly do you hack "the Internet" (model or otherwise)?

corepirate nazi ?pr? ?firm? hypenosys working? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396912)

they certainly are dooing their ?best? to give the hobbyist dogooders (aka HACKERS) the full phonIE FUDgIE, with va lairIE/robbIE's ?help?

try using the words 'tinker with', & see if you can now understand what's going on/gnu?

two quick answers (1)

proj_2501 (78149) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396942)

-worms and viruses
-discovering flaws in protocols not specific to particular implementations

Waste (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7396830)

Nice waste of money. Good job. Coolest hackers use social engineering to get $$$$$$$$$ from goverment ;-)

The Real Reason (4, Funny)

fireboy1919 (257783) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396911)

Tech support companies the world over are tired of people calling up and asking, "Is your internet better than the internets of other companies?" They made a plea to the US government to do something about it, who, out of embarassment for the American people's stupidity, promptly made up a new reason to make another, lower quality internet.

From now on, rather than spending several hours trying to explain the concept of the internet to people who have trouble walking and chewing gum at the same time, tech supporters will be able to simple say, "Yes."

Here is my offer... (1)

Noryungi (70322) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396922)

This would be a huge bunch of scripts.

  1. [Script #1] go to Netcraft. Compile stats on each OS usage. If you don't want to write a script for this, just enroll a couple of MBA students to click repeatedly on all the links and call it "market research"... ;-)
  2. Compile a list of the top 20+ vendors of OS used on the Internet, including the relevant web sites . For instance: HP, Sun, SGI, IBM, Microsoft, Linux distros, BSDs, etc...
  3. [Script #2] Using the list defined on step B, compile stats on each specific vendor vulnerabilities, security advisories, and patch response time.
  4. [Script #3] Here is the tricky part. Compile stats on "open" security problems, including well-known/infrastructure software such as BIND, Sendmail, etc. In other words: scan as many hosts as possible, trying to find vulnerable machines. For each OS, try to compile rough, worst case scenario stats on the number of hosts that are actually vulnerable right now.
  5. For each OS, install several machines: one with a "secure" install (best-case scenario), one for an "insecure" install (worst-case scenario -- no patches, open ports, etc.), one for middle ground scenarios, and several to run vulnerable infrastructure programs. Finally, install a separate network to simulate zombie machines and attack points
  6. Test the different networks with potential attacks (viruses, DDoS, known vulnerabilities, etc). Using [Script #4], compile stats on the effectiveness of each attack. For instance, if foobar Linux represents 5% of all hosts on the Internet, a successful attack on the most secure install of said foobar Linux just took down 5% of the 'net. Try simulating the effects on the rest of the Internet.
  7. Profit?? No, sorry, this was already paid for by the US Gov. If some money is left, try sponsoring your favourite Open Source OS to make it more secure.

I actually think this would make a nice little project... Ceratinly not worth US$ 5 million, though, unless you intend to install a huge number of machines.

Just offer prizes to hackers (4, Insightful)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396952)

I'm not sure how they plan to "model" the internet, but I would argue that the internet is its own best model. Anything else will lack some exloits present in the "real" net while have other exploits absent in the real net (bugs in the model's software).

I would take the $5.5 million and divide it up into $5000 prizes that are payable to any hacker that demonstrates and documents a hack on the real net. The profs and grad students could ajudicate the prize giving. They would find at least 1100 exploits this way (fewer if they have to pay those pesky grad students or usurious university accounting department overhead rates).

If letting hackers profit from hacking the actual internet is too scary/illegal, then the university could create a small publically exposed network running a variety of apps, OS, etc.

Similar Project at Iowa State University (5, Interesting)

logrey (27960) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396971)

Iowa State has a similar project funded with a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice.
Iowa State Computer Security Lab []

The nature of government grants (4, Informative)

mystery_bowler (472698) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396975)

For the last few years I've been developing software systems for law enforcement, so occassionally I pick up interesting bits of information about how government funding works. If you didn't hear about it - and not many people did - the Dept. of Homeland Security made a sort of "open call" (via the Dept. Of Justice, if I remember correctly) about a year or so ago. It was - more or less - an open invitation for vendors to propose innovative ideas to the DHS about fighting terrorism within the United States. The really interesting thing about the open call was that it was specifically worded to encourage "innovative" and "new" approaches. I joked at the time that I actually felt good about the open seemed like the guys at the DHS were acknowledging that they didn't have a clue what to do and where looking for expert help on making things radically better.

I'd be interested to find out if the "model internet" was a proposed idea. In terms of government funding, $5 million isn't all that much, so I wouldn't be surprised to see if this was an idea pitched by people at UCB and USC during the open call. I'd heard that big names asking for reasonably small amounts of money were getting through pretty easily.

I tried to convince my company to pitch a variant of our crime analysis/trendspotting tools. Include a reference per recorded crime that indicates political or religious bias as the motive of the crime. Get a concentration of those - even if they are "lesser" crimes like vandalism or simple assualt - and you've got "smoke". And where there's "smoke"...

The one thing thet can't really simulate... (1)

Squeebee (719115) | more than 10 years ago | (#7396999)

Is a good ole fashioned Slashdotting!

Headline: IPv2 space to run out in 2 years (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7397006)

Hopefully the switch over to IPv4 will go smoothly.
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