I am joining the largest super computer in the world to help fight COVID-19!

The amazing people behind Folding@home have set their sights on COVID-19.  Their efforts are to better understand how the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 can be targeted with small molecule and antibody therapeutics.  Got any computers that aren’t doing anything?  join up.

folding@home status panel

The Mac client needs work to support GPUs, but my stats are rising!

I hope everyone is having a Super Tuesday!

super tuesday - i voted

I got out to vote a little later than i hoped and encountered a longer line than i have ever before (at least from voting).  Only 55 minutes, nothing like some lines i have heard about. I got to play with the new electronic voting system.  “It’s not connected to the internet” was the response that i received when inquiring into the device security.  I have high confidence of the paper trail on these units, but I imagine that these machines do some sort of tabulation.  Unless we actually count the paper ballets, it is those tabulations that we are expected to trust.  These tabulation are trivial to manipulate if the devices are tampered with.  “Don’t worry, it’s offline” dissuades none of these fears.  Here are some pictures i took.  Not pictured are the 2 broken units that were taped off at my precinct. Also, i was told that they should not have allowed me to take these pictures.  i don’t know if that is true, but they did not seem to mind at the time.  (i wasn’t wearing that shirt at the time)

super tuesday - electronic votingsuper tuesday - paper ballotsuper tuesday - electronic voting - bernie

Finally retiring my last legacy windows box!

Final transfer from an ancient windows

This particular ancient server has stood as the glue holding several ancient record keeping systems together.  Today marks the last day that it was operating.  I supported this computer for almost it’s entire lifespan.  This Dell ran consistently for over 10 years with very little trouble.  Now your watch is over.

I have been retiring or upgrading unsupported systems all year. it’s to know that all the critical systems are up to date.  Let this be yet another warning if you are running Windows XP, Vista, 7, or 2008 Server (or anything earlier), you should upgrade immediately if you are online in any capacity.  Same goes for macs older then 10.13 (High Sierra). Seriously, don’t let it become a problem.

Status update:

network infrastructure

Well, my day was canceled and my phone needs a rebuild, so it’s maintenance day! finally getting to some much needed upgrades That i have been putting off.  please excuse the dust and potential outages.

Status update:

Backup Begins Again

For the first time in i don’t know how long, i have enough backup storage to backup ALL my critical data and even some less critical data.  This also marks the end of my OS X Server.  From a graphite G4 through so many minis, I have always had an OS X Server on my network. . . until now.  I left the label from its previous installation while it was in operation.  This mini i inherited the way i acquire so much equipment, it’s previous owner thought it was broken.  I tried to explain, but i wasn’t going to say no to this lovely unit.

Bad Server

Defcam 2.0 Preparation and more from Defcon 27!

DC27 Defcam2 - link UP

So I did not “complete” my hat until very late Friday when i finally got it to announce its link status on its new set of 14 segment displays.  It performed admirably all weekend.  Thanks to Paul for safely transporting it to and from Vegas. I must also thank Stephen for his late night help on Wednesday. (tacos are not enough)  Without his amazing soldering, i’d still be trying to figure out what i had done wrong.  Here are some pictures from that night and the con to follow. . .

DC27 Defcam - Return to operationDC27 Defcam2 - PreparationDC27 Defcam2 - new headerDC27 Defcam2 - PrototypingDC27 Defcam2 - CompleteDC27 Flight - Solar CollectorsDC27 - Nixie Badge
DC27 Villages - Rogues Village - Shuffle TheoryDC27 Talks - Detecting Mac MalwareDC27 Villages - Hacking a BoatDC27 - Badge Rick
Continue reading “Defcam 2.0 Preparation and more from Defcon 27!”

Status update:

I’m back in Vegas for Defcon and it’s going swimmingly. so much so that i might get some actual swimming in.

Patrick Wardle Speaking at Defcon 27Thanks to the late night help of Professor Franklin i have improved and redeployed the Defcam!be3n at defcon 27 with defcam streaming hat?

Google Play support agent suggests waiting a year for problem to go away. (audio)

I have been struggling with a Google Play suspension.  For some reason, google policy is not to discuss suspensions. period.  Not even to resolve them.  I have been battling with email and phone support for days, but this last communique was just too good not to share.  In this recording, the Google Play support agent admits nothing can be done and suggests i wait a year for the problem to resolve itself. (edited to remove personal details and to shorten length)

Google Play Fail - Rejected reinstatement

 

New security updates overtake jailbreak advantages.

There are just so many privilege escalation fixes in the latest iOS 12.2 update. I finally removed the jailbreak from my primary device and updated.  Privilege escalation is when an unprivileged or user process (like an app from the app store or even a web page*) gets root or even kernel authority.  This is when bad turns to worse because it can do and see anything with any of the device’s data or sensors.   Since even the big trusted apps have been caught tracking or stealing data, I simply couldn’t leave myself unprotected any longer.

I’ll still of course keep a development device jailbroken on 12.1.2 for all of the reasons. It was a wonderful experience, only slightly beta. I appreciate all the hard work by everyone in the scene. I think i am going hate seeing the home bar again the most.

* web pages are often sandboxed separately from the app itself. Some might argue that a webpage would first have to escape the sandbox before it could escalate privileges. this is true, but i would respond that sandbox escape is just another form of privilege escalation, only one level down. There are also over a dozen webkit fixes in this update.