Linksys - Linksux?

Linksys won't replace my BEFCMU10 cable modem even though Tech Support led me on with talk of a 1-time replacement (out of warranty replacement). The modem is nearly 3 years old, but why even mention the 1-time replacement deal if it's only something they do for 30 days after the one-year warranty expires? Linksys seemed very disorganized - like customer service didn't know what tech support was doing, and vice versa. Not impressed. Also not impressed when I asked the best way to dispose of the modem. Though she later admitted she didn't know what was in the modem, she suggested that I should just put it out with the garbage.


Hmmm... Cisco. Doesn't Cisco own Linksys?
"Ultimate disposal of this product should be handled according to all national laws and regulations"

From Motorola SB5100 manual:
"Recycling your Motorola Equipment
Please do not dispose of this product with your residential or commercial waste. Some countries or regions, such as the European Union, have set up systems to collect and recycle electrical and electronic waste items. Contact your local authorities for information about practices established for your region. If collection systems are not available, call Motorola Customer Service for assistance."

Apparently, Linksys makes cable modems that are environmentally friendly.

Yeah, right.


Free Visual Studio Express until Nov. 7, 2006

Microsoft has made the Visual Studio 2005 Express editions free for one year!
From the above link are links available to download:
Visual Web Developer 2005 Express
Visual Basic 2005 Express
Visual C# 2005 Express
Visual C++ 2005 Express
Visual J# 2005 Express
SQL Server Express

Download them before November 7, 2006, and they're free to use forever.


Very Bad Things...

Whoa... Ran across this a while ago, and again just this AM. But the first time I saw it was too late.
"When you restart a computer that is running Windows Server 2003 or Windows 2000 Server, the computer stops responding, or the "Applying computer settings" screen appears for longer than you expect"

Ran into a system where we could not install a service using the Win32 API CreateService (API would hang). We were also unable to delete a service using DeleteService. Tried various techniques to troubleshoot the problem, but the system wasn't even able to shutdown gracefully. Thought there might be a virus so we had the admin of the system run a scan. Nothing turned up. Wound up trying INSTSRV from the Resource Kit. That too would hang. But I used Dr. Watson to get a memory dump of the process and analyzed it in WinDBG to verify that it, too, was hanging in CreateService. We thought that perhaps there was something installed on the system that was causing some sort of a conflict, so we tried to stop a number of services on the system. Amazingly, none of the services would stop - they would get into a state of "Stopping", and stay there. Customer said they had other problems with the system, too, and were considering replacing it. So we didn't do anything more with the system. But one of the services I noted on the system that would have problems from time to time was "APCPBEAgent" (referenced in the above KB article) - it would sometimes remain in a state of "Starting" for 5+ minutes. I suspect that the problems with the system were a direct result of the issue outlined in the KB article.

This problem occurs because of a problem with version 6.x of APC PowerChute Business Edition Software. APC has issued the following official statement about this issue:

The APC 6.x software uses Sun Microsystems Java Cryptography Extension(JCE) 1.2.1 Package. The digital certificate that was used to sign the JCE 1.2.1 jar files expired on July 27, 2005. Because of this, the system causes the above detailed symptoms.





Interesting story on a potential "alternative" use of computer worms for "good" rather than evil.

"He [Dave Aitel] said nematodes can be automatically created from available vulnerability information and even showed off a new programming language to create the worms."

Not sure this is the way of the future, but...


Sony in a DRM pickle?

Looks like Mark Russinovich (Sysinternals) has found a DRM protection scheme that hides itself using techniques commonly exhibited by rootkits. There are a number of interesting issues raised around this matter...