Archive | June 28, 2005

What is the best firewall for Windows servers?

Slashdot hosts an interesting question: What is the Best Firewall for Servers?. Sushant Bhatia asks: “I maintain a bunch of servers (Win 2003/XP Pro) at our labs in the university. Of late, the number of attacks on the computers has been more noticeable. The university provides firewall software (Kerio) but that doesn’t work with Win 2003 (works with XP). And so we keep getting hit by zombie machines taken over in the Education Department or from Liberal Arts :-). So what does the Slashdot crowd use when they need to secure their Linux and Windows servers? Does it cost less than US$100?”

Slashdot is filled with trolls, so setting your threshold around 4 raises the level of discussion and lowers the number of responses to read (although the rebar and concrete answer was a keeper). Interesting that the responses were pretty strongly “FreeBSD.” An answer near the bottom points out the latest W2K3 service pack provides the WinXP firewall to W2K3 servers. Another posting argues that each Windows machine needs its own firewall in addition to the perimeter. The perimeter defense was proven to have some serious flaws in the fall of Troy. Amazing that it is still considered.

Doc Groks Grokster

 Doc Searls’ IT Garage – blogs Grokking Grokster.

“When I heard about the Grokster decision this morning (in which the Supremes decided unanimously in favor of MGM, et. al. in its suit against Grokster, et. al.), I knew many, in the blogosphere as well as the mass media, would play the story as a victory by Hollywood over Technology. That may be right, but to what does the metaphor blind us? Take away the war and sports framing, and what have you got?”

Doc writes a balanced piece, with links and quotations from both sides: illegal file sharing is, well, illegal, but banning basic technologies for peer-to-peer work has a potentially chilling effect on American technological innovation.

The basic system is screwed up. Most consumers don’t have a problem with the idea that authors and musicians and inventors ought to be paid for their work. What technology has brought to many other venues is disintermediation – the elimination of the middle-man from the exchange between the consumer and the artist. Amazon attempts to bridge the gap between publisher and reader, skipping distributors and local bookstores. eBay and Craig’s List attempts to link buyer and seller without second-hand shops. Record-company labels used to provide a service by finding talented musicians, renting high-end studio space and production skills, manufacturing vinyl records and distributing them to record stores in the hinterlands. Now that the artists can put audio tracks on their websites and artists can burn CDs with the help of some technical friends, the need for record labels ought to go the way of the buggy whip. Musicians need to take back ownership of their music, and their audience will pay.

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This work by Ted Roche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.