Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



US Spying Costs Boeing Military Jet Deal With Brazil

SgtAaron Re:Probably more to it (439 comments)

Brazil clearly picked Saab because it's a better choice, and then the President saw an opportunity to bolster his "I'm not America's boy" reputation at home. Well played.

Dilma Rousseff is female :-) First woman to hold the office.

about 10 months ago

The Case Against Gmail

SgtAaron Re:I'm weaning myself off of Gmail and Google (435 comments)

And how much work is keeping your own host updated and spam filtered? I've thought about doing it before on several occasions (the Raspberry Pi seems like a cheap solution), but I've heard that keeping things smooth for a single account is generally more trouble than it's worth. How much time would you say it takes?

You could install spamassassin and procmail. If procmail sees X-Spam-Flag: YES in the headers, plop it into your spam folder
or whatever. We use spamassassin on our incoming email servers and I very rarely get spam in my inbox. I receive more than 100
spams a day. We're an ISP and I very rarely have to muck around with with tweaking rules, etc.

After installing spamassassin, a cron job should be set up to run sa-update daily to update the filter rules.

about a year ago

What's In Steve Ballmer's Inbox?

SgtAaron Re:Another view; a catch-all inbox (93 comments)

In all seriousness, I don't use a catch-all. Because none of the messages bounce back as undeliverable, it just builds up a worthless legitimate list for spammers around the world. Unless things have changed and you can both receive via catch-all and forge a false undeliverable, I'd rather not pollute my domain.

I don't see that it matters. Spammers, in my experience, rarely send with a valid return address, even if it looks legit. Say, like, And weeding their lists doesn't seem to be a priority. If I were to look in our mail logs right now, I'd no doubt see
thousands of spam mails per day sent to addresses that haven't existed for YEARS. My own address was unused for more than 3 years, and after
I activated it again (came back to work here, iow), I received new spam within seconds.

about 2 years ago

CyanogenMod Domain Hijacked

SgtAaron Re:This would seem to be the guy (143 comments)

His ears were burning, he has updated his whois and is now anonymous. Not that it is going to help him now.

Administrative Contact:
        Contact Privacy Inc. Customer 0121602432,
        96 Mowat Ave
        Toronto, ON M6K 3M1
Record last updated on 14-Nov-2012.

about 2 years ago

GoDaddy Goes Down, Anonymous Claims Responsibility

SgtAaron Re:You think this is a Game? (483 comments)

You could host secondary DNS yourself.

Can anyone tell me: if this is done, what happens when either DNS server is down, from the point of view of the user?

End-users should not notice a thing. The caching resolver they use at their ISP will try one of the listed
nameservers for a domain first (typically at random) if that address is not already in its cache, and if
the connection fails will automagically try the next in its list, if that fails the next, and so on. A delay of
some milliseconds in name resolution will be the only result, and probably not even noticed. If both
(or all if more than one) of the listed nameservers are offline and their is no cache entry for the looked up
name, the resolver will return an error to the client. Then they get a network connection error or whatever
their particular web browser decides to call the problem.

more than 2 years ago

Dutch Police Takedown C&Cs Used By Grum Botnet

SgtAaron The end of spam? (45 comments)

From the article:

"In my opinion, taking down the top three spam botnets—Lethic, Cutwail, and Grum—is enough for a rapid and permanent decline in worldwide spam level," he said. "We still have to deal with small players, but I am sure that, after seeing the big players being knocked down, they will retreat as well."

Very optimistic! There's too many colo/virtual host sites out there that simply don't give a rat's ass that large swaths of their
bandwidth and IP space are being used by spammers. They're everywhere! And I've given up telling them. Even "legit" ISPs
like Integra have routinely ignored my notices in the past, so I've simply given up, I haven't the time or inclination to help any
more. They're using spammers to help pad their bottom line.

Reduced, sure, but go away? And another big botnet will appear again in the future, I have no doubt at all.

more than 2 years ago

When Antivirus Scammers Call the Wrong Guy

SgtAaron Re:Question- How did scammers do this? (473 comments)

I remember working C64 BASIC code to hack out call progress detection back in the early 80's. Had a Code-A-Phone where we pulled the 8042 microcontroler and emulated it with the C64. The Teltone/SSI chips (981, etc.) really saved our asses. Then I figured out how to brute-force calling card numbers with the hardware. Long story short, three years in Club Fed.

I was recently setting up a web power switch and its manual said the scripting language it used was BASIC, and I instantly flashed back to writing
a Star Trek II (Kaaahhhnn) simulator in BASIC during the 80's that had photon torpedoes about 1cm x 1cm. Strange how the brain works sometimes. Well, it
wasn't as sophisticated as your call progress detection hack, by any means, but I wish I had managed to saved that 5 1/4" floppy, just for grins.

Also, I believe this might be the first time in my years of having a slashdot login that I recall seeing someone admit to spending time in the slammer without posting as an AC. Cheers #1563, and happy for you that you left the club in time to garner a four-digit slashdot userid! I'm not jealous or anything. Ah, I'm off-topic. Been here 12 years and have a six-digit userid, I'll be off-topic for once. Heh.

But to get back on topic, though most likely nobody will read it. Working for an ISP off-and-on these last 15 years has nearly forced me to want to line up these scammers... well and do something not nice to them. Perhaps force them to watch under bright lights whilst someone social engineers one of their family and gets them to give up their life savings, at least their email password so we can login to their webmail and send nasty emails to all of their contacts. This is a symptom of having lots of customers do just that and *poof* we have thousands of emails going all over the place and Yahoo and what not deferring everything, so customers call up wondering why their email (forwarded joke, with attachments) to Grandma hasn't arrived yet. Maybe these scammers are desperate, maybe not. But it's kind of like shitting on someone else's lawn and not cleaning it up. *Someone* has to, and it's usually us.

I did login to the latest Nigerian scammer's web site, at some colo center in Germany btw, and enter a username of "GO BITE YOURSELF HOSER" and a password of "GET A LIFE". Wish I could say I tied them up on the phone for 30 minutes, but that is my contribution so far.

more than 2 years ago

West Virginia Buys $22K Routers With Stimulus, Puts Them In Small Schools

SgtAaron Re:That hurts my stomach a little... (295 comments)

Wow! Thats an enormous waste of money!
They make $22,000 routers? What could they possibly do that like an Airport Extreme can't? heh.

Screw that. I just told my boss about this story and he imploded. We've been deploying MikroTiks to many
remote sites and they never bat an eye (although we sometimes prefer to run OpenWRT on them instead of
dealing with RouterOS). At around $80 a piece, they could have saved nearly $24 million dollars. Add
some additional cost for something cheap that interfaces with their T-1's. Ah, they should have got all the
fiber ready and then bought something much cheaper that would interface with it. $24 million of OUR MONEY.
Thank you WV.

more than 2 years ago

Volcano Near Mexico City Becomes More Active

SgtAaron Re:Stupid (114 comments)

What kind of idiot builds a city next to a volcano?

For any of us that happen to live in the northwest US or the billion or so others who are near the Pacific ring of fire, we don't really have much choice. Here in Bend, we're only 30 miles from a bunch of old volcanoes--one of them, South Sister, is developing a bulge that grows about 1 inch a year--but if we moved the city farther away, we'd be out in the desert without our wonderful view of the Cascade Mountains and quick access to the ski resort and the dozens of lakes up there. Who would want that? I think it's a lot easier for someone from Scotland (I assume *that* Edinburgh) to avoid volcanoes in his native land, eh?

In any case, lack of proximity does not equal safety. When Mt St Helens erupted in 1980, I was in Spokane, at least a couple of hundred miles away from it, and we got blanketed in ash that made life more difficult for weeks. We didn't suffer from pyroclastic flows or anything, of course, but it's not recommended to breath volcanic ash for any length of time (had to wear masks forever).

about 2 years ago

Space Junk Forced Astronauts Into ISS Escape Capsules

SgtAaron Re:Need the dragon (87 comments)

Seriously, one of the hidden issues on the ISS is that the crews are split

Good info. I don't believe this would stop the crew up there from investigating, trying to
find and investigating again some way to save the other half. I'm guessing, but if I were up
there, saving these friends of mine would be a priority. Up there, I suppose, my wishes
might be like dust.

more than 2 years ago

Space Junk Forced Astronauts Into ISS Escape Capsules

SgtAaron Love to test efficacy (87 comments)

Give me a Soyuz capsule, or give me an eternity in this gravity well.

more than 2 years ago

AT&T To Acquire T-Mobile From Deutsche Telekom

SgtAaron Re:Borgification (748 comments)

No, you will continued to be serviced by t-mobile folks locked away in some far corner of customerservicelandia.


There's a large T-Mobile support center here in central Oregon. They even have a gym and other nice amenities for call reps. And I've talked to T-Mobile reps who are at other call centers in the US. It would be a shame if AT&T cut those jobs. It was a big deal when T-Mobile came here--it's not like there are tons of other jobs opening up.

more than 3 years ago

BSG Prequel Series Caprica Canceled

SgtAaron Re:I tried to like it. I really did. (602 comments)

I never watched BSG or C but from what i gather, they tried turning it into a soap and doing it on the cheap. Boys like special fx and girls like character development. The former is easy to do but expensive for what you get. The latter is cheap but harder to do in the long run. In the end, budget usually wins.

Your message is ambiguous--when you say "doing it on the cheap" are you talking about BSG, or Caprica, or both?

I never did get to watch Caprica. I've dissed cable and sat tv for awhile now. BSG, on the other hand, I watched. I would say that, regardless of how much they paid their actors, the audience saw performance above and beyond that of the typical science fiction show of late. It's interesting that some of them often lived as day actors in Vancouver, grabbing parts here and there as they could. But the performances they gave! How about the job Tricia Helfer did (hmm, I might be biased). She rocked. No, the casting for BSG was terrific.

So on to the topic of girls: never in my life have I known of a sci-fi show that lots of girls ended up liking. You're stereotyping big-time, too. Why should my maleness preclude me from wanting "character development"? Bah, rubbish man, rubbish. I even got my sister-in-law to like BSG, which she watched until the end, as did other women I know, including a romantic interest. Star Trek never had the same effect in my world :-)

more than 3 years ago

BSG Prequel Series Caprica Canceled

SgtAaron Re:Or it could just be the SyFy channel (602 comments)

Bah, add in Babylon 5, Quantum Leap, Lost In Space (cheezy-camp, but still an appropriate choice), and a few other classics, so it's not THAT repetitive.

I just happened to peruse the other day and noticed that they have a lot of Quantum Leap episodes available for viewing. I was amazed, really--I hadn't visited a mainstream network's web site in some time. In the end, I watched some episodes of the original BSG! Hah! Born in 1972, I'm old enough to recall seeing them back when they aired. Luckily, my mom has always been a sci-fi fan. Just hearing the music tickles long-lasting pathways in my brain.

more than 3 years ago

Linux 2.6.36 Released

SgtAaron Re:news for gnurds? (238 comments)

Ah, Halo, I love emacs, but never bothered to master its web browsing functions. No, for me it was lynx, and emacs was relegated to text and code editing functions. And you didn't have to be too late back in the day to end up with a uid greater than 3 digits. I signed up in 2000/2001 (can't recall precicely) and ended up with a six-digit uid :-) btw, once in awhile I still load up lynx for simple stuff, but less and less often as the weeks go by. Hmm, I'm posting this more than 12 hours after you did, so you may be the only one to see it if you manage to look!


about 4 years ago

Decades-Old Soviet Reflector Spotted On the Moon

SgtAaron Re:why bother ? (147 comments)

There are other mirrors up there. why actually search for this one ?

FTFA: Now the team can eventually pin down the changing shape of the lunar orbit to the millimeter to help test Einstein’s theory of general relativity.

There might be other reflective things on the moon, but I assume that this one is somehow special. I at least *hope* that the people searching for it know what they are doing :p

There are certainly other reflectors out there on the moon, that could and have been used for measuring the moon's distance--and for some time now. I can't imagine what could be special about this one, except for the quality, perhaps? Nah. What if it's not kosher for others to shoot lasers at the reflectors that other scientists use? The article ends there and is skimpy on details.

more than 4 years ago

Fate of Terry Childs Now In Jury's Hands

SgtAaron Re:I don't think so... (530 comments)

Honestly, I have met a lot of people and they firmly believe they know everything because they went to college.


Probably my first off-topic post after years reading slashdot, but I must say that FTFY stuff is getting a bit tiring. It doesn't sit well with me to quote somebody's words and alter them. Better to quote honestly and explain how you think your opinion differs, which it would seem you don't disagree anyway. FTFY seems very arrogant to me--there was really nothing to fix in his post because what he said was actually true in his experience, and most reasonable people would agree with him. There's probably not one post ever submitted that couldn't be "fixed" by someone in some fashion, and then what kind of forum would it be? Just a bunch of FTFY's, over and over and over... blah! Am I being picky? hmmm

more than 4 years ago

Fate of Terry Childs Now In Jury's Hands

SgtAaron Re:honestly... (530 comments)

If decisions needed to be well-reasoned, virtually no politicians, journalists, CEOs or financial executives would be permitted within a mile of their workplace, advertising in its current form would be outlawed, and the Sci Fi channel would be showing Doctor Who.

And it would still be spelled "Sci Fi". Marketing drones... the hosers.

more than 4 years ago

Warhammer Online Users Repeatedly Overbilled

SgtAaron Re:don't know if this is related but... (216 comments)

Frost bank recently sent me an update of their overdraft policies:
"We will charge you a fee of up to $30 each time we pay an overdraft.
There is no limit on the total fees we can charge you for overdrawing your account."
the bold $30 was as they printed it and the phrase "no limit" was underlined by them.
luckily i don't play Warhammer, but i wonder if this notice was related...

My friend, the management of Frost Bank sounds like a cold-hearted bunch. Luckily for them, they'll be able to take your hard-earned fees and distribute them to their various boat payments. The warmth of the Caribbean will no doubt make up for months of freezing in Manhattan--or wherever you and Frost Bank live in the world :-)

more than 4 years ago

25 Years of the .com gTLD

SgtAaron Re:No .. (104 comments)

I remember having to install Trumpet or WinSocket or whatever the name was, just to add TCP/IP to Windows 3.11 so I could browse websites.

Close! Strange how memory works. Put those two together and you get "Trumpet Winsock". You just tickled a few memories: I remember I was really happy to buy Win95 so I wouldn't have to deal with Trumpet Winsock anymore. Well, and let's face it, it was an improvement to 3.11, but really I think my packard hell computer ran the older much faster than the new, but networking was easier. Thanks to the internet I found slackware linux some few months later. No more winsock.dll... :)

As for the story topic, later I found out how much a racket network solutions was with their outrageous domain registration fees, and heard about this guy Aveek Datta and, which we would provide free domain names under for anybody. Thousands and thousands signed up--clearly average people didn't want to pay $100+ for a .com name. I helped run that for awhile, and it was a worthy cause in my book. It was hard to like network solutions. I couldn't have helped if I hadn't spent hours fixing my screwups in slackware, on a side note :)

more than 4 years ago


SgtAaron hasn't submitted any stories.


SgtAaron has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?