Sunday, July 11, 2010

About This "Perfect Citizen" Crap...

I'll let BadTux handle this one:

As a network administrator, I have an informal description of what a computer connected to my network needs to look like in order to be a "good citizen". Its networking must be properly configured (with the proper netmask and etc.) so that it is properly routable and does not create ARP storms or routing loops. It must have a currently-supported operating system on it (that is, one whose vendor still provides critical security fixes), and must have those critical security fixes applied. It must be properly licensed (i.e., the OS is not pirated), and all software on it must be properly licensed. All unnecessary services should be shut down, and it should have current antivirus protection and no spyware or viruses installed on it. If it contains critical information, firewall software must be running on it that restricts access to information to only those systems that have a "need to know", and there should be no extraneous user accounts on the system other than for those users that absolutely need it.

In short, it must comply with the NSA's security configuration guidelines as well as with my own personal guidelines. And I will regularly run network scanners looking for open ports (that may be viruses or unauthorized services) as well as run the Big Brother SNMP monitor program, which will verify that the systems are properly running and alert me if something goes wrong. And if everything is completely and properly set up... well, a system connected to my network might well be a Perfect Citizen...

Personally, I have nothing on the portly-but-well-tailored one when it comes to computers. Not even close. Reading English, typing on a QWERTY keyboard, and using a mouse (or in my case, the touch pad behind the space bar) are all second-nature to me, but everything else I've learned about and in relation to computers in the six and a half years I've been online has been acquired through trial and error -- with heavy emphasis on the error part. In fact, I'm so ass-backwards when it comes to this stuff (and new technology in general), it took me more than five years just to figure out how to cut and paste.

Yes, that is correct -- before I learned how to cut and paste, I spent all that blogging time typing out my blockquoted stuff, my HTML stuff, and my URLs one character at a time. I keep telling people I'm not as smart as I'm occasionally made out to be, but no one ever listens...

Anyway, so why am I even linking to BT's post? Because, although in many ways I may be stuck in the days when floppy disks were actually floppy, I've still lived through, and remember living through, the administrations of Bill Clinton and Bush the Lesser, and now this ongoing imbroglio presided over by Mr. Obama. That's seventeen years plus change. In those seventeen years plus change, I've been force-fed so many stories of baseless and reckless paranoia about the powers that be, I'm just about ready for wearing a portable septic tank that will pump this endless stream of tinfoil-laden waste out of my system for me while I go about living my life, as the Flying Spaghetti Monster meant it to be. I don't have time for this shit anymore. You got a conspiracy you think I need to know about? List the facts that support it, and then go away. I'll take it from there, hypotheticals and all.

Otherwise, you have come to the wrong blog. Piss off...


  1. Everything that requires planning and involves more than one person is a conspiracy, Jim. The only bone of contention is--and always has been--who owns the conspiracy.

  2. >You got a conspiracy you think I need to know about?

    Bartkid sez,
    Just one: The American owners colluded on the 1990 MLB lockout, not to keep players' salaries in check, but to prevent something they saw as more heinous. The Montreal Expos were on pace to win the World Series, after the Toronto Blues won in '88 and '89. Can't have a World Series that could be won by any other teams than American ones. The Expos are now gone, and Toronto has never been close to being in the running ever since.

    As for computer-based conspiracies, I would like to request one. May we, please, have a set of white-hats that are able to track down spammers and publish these jerks home addresses? Then let the mob mete out its judgment. If China can impose capital punishment on business executives who poisoned children's milk, I would think a comparable level of retribution would apply to these criminals


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