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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Why Identity Management is Needed

"...statistics show ... that new users are added to 16 different directories. When they leave that company, they are only taken out of 10"
Peter Houston, Microsoft's senior director of identity and access management..

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Address Books; How Many do You have?

Well,it happened again.
Wife said get mt "THE" address list so I can send Christmas cards.
I mumbled something and walked away.

So, off I went to the office to get "THE" address list.
I use the following address books regularly.
Palm - I use an add on called Agendus but it uses the Palm Address Book.
Thunderbird - Email
LDAP      - I have an LDAP server that I run my email server and other stuff from.
Quicken   - To Keep those bills and taxes paid
Delorme   - GIS mapping software so I put in someone's name and it draws a map.
Dymo Label Printer - They have their own software to print Labels.
Legacy Deluxe -
Genology Program

Now in 2006, you would think it should be easy to use one address book for everything, but it well just doesn't happen.

I have yet to find anything that will keep them in Sync, reliably.

Heck, I have yet been able to find a way to export and import them.

Monday, July 10, 2006

A whole new world or Opportunities

If you have not read "The World is FLat" go read it now.

Then listen to "Software Strategies for Flat World"
IBM has 39,000 employees in Bangalore up from 18,000 employees in 2005.

Ray Lane: "
Over the years, the profit pool for the software industry has declined, leaving three dominant players to reap roughly 80 percent of the profits, Lane noted. Microsoft, with roughly 50 percent, has the largest share, he said.



Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Consumer Electronics

USA Today has an article on the Consumer Electronics Show which starts this week. You should read the highlights of the Article and how Google and Yahoo are entering the market.

But, to me, the interesting part of the piece is;

“Stunning, but complicated “

I recently bought a Microsoft Media Center PC and have found that the issue is the Consumer electronics that have problems with the new world.

I do have one of those discrete component systems, a separate receiver/amplifier, 400 disk DVD player, DirectTV receiver, HD DirectTV Receiver, two VCRs, 200 disc CD Player, etc.

The issue is the VCRs only have composite audio and video outputs, I want to use the DVI interface on the HD DirectTV receiver to get the best picture and the component video on the DVD player to get the best picture and of course optical audio on everything I can.

Now the PC has only a one composite video input and only one component video input and then I have paid extra for a second tuner so I have two coax inputs. So there is no way to connect all my video and audio to the computer directly.

So then I thought I would connect all the video and audio to my Receiver, a high-end ES Series Sony, a few years old, has no DVI video, no Component Video and will not even up-convert composite Video to S-Video. So I went looking for a receiver that would.

Well I found a couple that might do the job, but they all start around $1,900.00.

Why can the Consumer electronics gear just use FireWire to connect to each other and then to the computer. Firewire can handle the bandwidth for both the video and audio. Would this just make too much sense?

Seems like the consumer electronics folks are much more interested in protecting copy rights and their historic connections than providing a solution for their customers.

 

Thursday, November 17, 2005

What is with the Consumer Electronic (CE) Devices?

Why with todays technology are the Consumer Electronic companies still doing the same thing they were in the 1960's?

I have a Rather large collection of CE devices and the boss is making comments like:

  • Too many wires.
  • Too many remotes.
  • Too complex.

Some of the issues and devices we have:

  • Television  - Sony TV (KE-42TS2) 42” Plasma
  • VCR  - Sony VCR (SLV-N51)
  • DVD  - Sony DVD (DVP-CX985) 400 DVD/CD Juke Box
  • Stereo Receiver  - Sony AV Receiver (STR-DA30ES)
  • Satellite  - Sony Satellite (SAT-HD300) DirecTV
  • CD Player  - Sony CD Jukebox (CDP-CX153)

Some of the issues:

  • Just controlling these items takes 6 remotes or One Harmony Remote (Thank Goodness for Harmony)
  • Now I really like the Idea of Sony 400 DVD/CD juke box. But, the interface to put in the DVD info sucks. They have a feature to read the DVDs but it fails to read most of the DVDs. There is no method to search for all movies by Actor or Producer or any of the things I can do with Real Media for MP3’s.
  • Then of course there are the many different video connections. The VCR only has composite video. The DVD, to get the best picture uses component video, the satellite dish, for the best picture we use DVI.
  • The Sony AV Receiver, a few years old, will not Up or Down convert any of the video signals and has no DVI so switching them via the Sony AV Receiver is worthless. I see where the new Sony high end ($2,000+) will perform up-converting to from composite to S-Video or componenet video but not to DVI. It also has two DVI in-outs and one DVI outputs.
  • The Sony TV, has all of the input connections (and its own tuner) but now I want to add a MCE with DVI and there is only one DVI connection.

Why could we not have all the devices with a fire-wire ports so we could have one wire to connect them together?

Or with the Wi-Fi capabilities today, why not have Wi-Fi embedded in them and could they all discover them selves? With a PDA with Wi-Fi we could control any of the CE devices.

Then there are the Tivos and the MCEs that portray to make it simpler, but they really make it more complicated.

Tivo has there own way of doing things and of course they could not get together with the MCE folks and come up with a seamless way to let the Tivo box work seamlessly with a MCE box, or visa versa.

Then throw in HDTV from DirecTV and then there is another mess. No Tivo and no MCE works with DirecTV because of course DirecTV has yet another way to do things.

Apparently rule number One with all these companies is “Protect Our Turf” and then rule number 367 says do what is right for the customer.

 

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Where's the open in http://www.oasis-open.org

Open, according to Merriam Webster (from http://www.merriamwebster.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=Open&x=0&y=0)

Let me see, to contribute, you  must pay a mininum of  $5,750 - $1,000. Did I miss something in the definition of “Open”?

Oh, you want to use an OASIS standard, well that means you have to license the right to use the standard. (See http://www.oasis-open.org/who/intellectualproperty.php#licensing_req). Funny, I missed that in the definition of  “Open” also.

You would be surprised what we use everyday thinking that it is open. UDDI as an example. So, even though it is difficult to understand it is UDDI must also be licensed for you to use. See: http://uddi.org/pubs/uddi-v3.0.2-20041019.htm#_Toc85908472 

The basis of the license reads:

“If the Licensors own any patents or patent applications that may be required for implementing and using the specifications contained in the Document in products that comply with the specifications, upon written request, a non-exclusive license under such patents shall be granted on reasonable and non-discriminatory terms.”

Oh, and I can not quote from the “Open” standard from without providing:

1.          A link to the original document posted on uddi.org. (http://uddi.org/pubs/uddi-v3.0.2-20041019.htm)

2.          An attribution statement : ("Copyright © 2000 - 2002 by Accenture, Ariba, Inc., Commerce One, Inc. Fujitsu Limited, Hewlett-Packard Company, i2 Technologies, Inc., Intel Corporation, International Business Machines Corporation,  Microsoft Corporation, Oracle Corporation, SAP AG, Sun Microsystems, Inc., and VeriSign, Inc.  All Rights Reserved.")

I guess http://www.oasis-open.org  must use have licensed a different definition of “open” than ( http://www.merriamwebster.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=Open&x=0&y=0) and the rest of us.

I am very concerned. If the answer is SOA and WEB services, then how can we put licenses on the standards?

Is that any different than putting a license on 120vac 60hz?

Or on putting a license on “a pathway of concrete, steel and or asphalt consisting of more than two lanes with on and off ramps at irregular intervals.” Oops. I think I should have got patent this before I wrote it.

 

Saturday, March 26, 2005

St Thomas 2005 Vacation Day Six-Friday

Breakfast

 Molly McQuires in Redhook on the “American Yaht Harbor” dock is a great breakfast place.

The Adventure

We rented a small power boat, 16 foot, if I remeber right. We wanted to see what the tour guides would’t show you. The boat guy siad go gather up some provisions like some sandwhciches and ice etc form the deli down the way and come back. We did.

Now, I do not have any real experiance driving a power boat, but I did tll the guy we used to own one. I managed to get the thing to the fuel dock with only a little trouble as we had to wait in some wind for several minutes while the other boats that were fueling left.

After fueling up we were on our way. Nautical maps are difficult to read. They certainly do not seem to scale and there were two on the boat and they showed different aspects. I think a GPS should be required for all boats. We managed to wind our way a long the north shore of St. John and found a small bay to pull in and tie up to a mooring bouy. The boat dock guy said we were not allowed to ancher in the National park. Good thing as this boat did not have an anchor.

We saw a green sea turtle 30 yards off the boat. got some pictures. We decided to snrokel in to the beach. It must of been 1/4 mile to the shore so we had a half-mile swim to take. We really did pretty good. One of the snorkle masks leaks. So we had to stop every so often to clear the mask. We were not sure where we were so when we go to the beach we asked some one and they said it was HawksNest bay. Upon arriving back to the boat, it was a long swim, we had luch on the water. Consulting the maps, we were not at all where we thought we were. We had not traveled nearly as far as we had thought.

We ventured out along the north side of St. John traveling along the line between the US VI and British VI. THe water and scenerary were the best. As we reached the east end of St. John molly commented on the open water that was ominous to the east. I told here the next shore was Africa. We went all the way around St. John and ties to a mooring bouy in a cove not so far from shore this time. We snorkeled here for another hour or so. Saw lots of fish and a smaller turtle.

Molly and I both thought this was the best day of  the trip.

Dinner

I was determined to go to a place called the Frigate. But Molly said we would have to got back to the Hotel and shower if we were going there. We both had this white haze all over our hair and face. Seems the salt water that evaperated left some salt behind. Everything seemes a little crusty.

We had to wait on the boat guy to get back to the dock so we had a couple of drinks at Molly’s. We were watching the people at Molly’s put up the dinner specials and decided to eat there. So we had another drink or two. 

Friday, March 25, 2005

St Thomas 2005 Vacation Day Four

Breakfast

 

No Bugs

Ok, well not insects, bees or other types that seem to be pests. A lot of the restaurants are open air with no screens.

The biggest pests are the taxi drivers that all ask you if you are looking for a taxi. They are waiting outside every restaurant and shop.

Shopping

More Jewelry stores than you can count. One shop keeper said there were 118 jewelry vendors on the Island. There were five large cruise ships in port today. The shop keeper also related that this was the end of the busy season and things would slow down for a couple of months.

Lunch

We decided to seek the air conditioning. Went to the Hard Rock cafe on the waterfront. Had salads and Iced Tea. All good and suited us for the time. $33.00 with tip.

Dinner

We stopped at The Green House hoping for traffic to settle dwon a little before we went to the hotel. Had a few drinks and a shrimp cocktail.

We split a sandwich and salad for dinner at the hotel in the Cabana Bar. Good burger and the salad was great. $30.00 with tip and a couple of drinks.

St Thomas 2005 Vacation Day Two

The Sunrise

Cloudy this morning. Makes me, wonder if the money we paid for the reservation for the all day trip on a boat is covered in event of rain.

No cruise ships at dock, but one is circling the bay with his lights on.

Oops. Think I felt a rain drop. Well, that was it. A drop of rain. I retreated to a place under cover, not the clouds have blown by and the sun is rising over the hill.

Breakfast

Finally, a place that can do breakfast. The ?? is a well know breakfast spot for the locals and fit our needs well. Real breakfast. Eggs, omelets, toast etc.

The Pitch

We went to a seminar to learn of this great new way to vacation. As usuaual it is a pitch on how you should buy some time share proeprty under this new method and you can vacation for life. Well, we did get a bottle of Rum and a coupon for discounts on some things we wanted to do while we were here. Probably worth the time even if it was closer to two hours than the one houre we were told.

Lunch 

We did lunch at the tops of the ride. The ride was cool. Every visitor should do this. Our discount coupon it was $5.00 instead of $16.00 helped. Lunch was sandwiches and was good, but still $22.00 with tip.

Adventure

We took off to find the spot where we will depart from for our sailing adventure. On the narrow winding roads up the hill side. Amazigly country side. You pass the fancy resorts and then pass some shack that has a dirt floor with chickens and two or three broken down vehicles in the yard.

Dinner

The Tavern on the Waterfront. I think this is one of my top ten meals, anywhere. The place is upstairs and overlooks the water. $94.00 with tip. 

St Thomas 2005 Vacation Day Three

Weather

The Weather forcastor could record his programs in advance. Today, the same as yesterday. Lows 72 high 82, feels like 110.

Ships at port

There were three ships waiting for the sunrise this morning to dock. One of them has now docked. (6:40) The other two are circling in to the dock. All three are Big ships. We asked a guy yesterday and he said it would not be unusual for these big ships to have 3,000 passengers on board.

The Adventure

We have a day booked on a sail ship. Snorkeling and sun bathing for the day. Discount ticket we got from our two hour sales pitch did get us half off.

Breakfast and then down the winding road through the little towns. Got to the sport early, of course. More people were on the boat than we expected. But that was not a problem. New Horizons.

Fun to watch the guy and gals sail the boat. Not really agressive ride but they did get the main sail out for part of the trip. The water was beautiful. Our first stop was on the island of St. John at a beech on a property owned by the Rocerfellers. We snorkelled for about an hour had some good sightings of fish. The reef was not like we had seen in Bahammas or Mexico (Cancuun) not near the variety of corral or wild life.

Food On Board

We were served unlimited beverages and luch which was not bad for the conditions.

Dinner

We decided to eat at the hotel tonight. So we went back to the Banana Tree. Food was excellent and service was much better. Still $121.00 for diner wih tip and a couple of beverages.

Sun Burn

Well, almost. We used 15 sunblock and put it on twice. Once before we left and once while on the boat. Still sholders areas got quite red.

 

St Thomas Vacation 2005 Arrival

The Flight

The Flight went well. The Bose Quit Comfort II head phones are un-real. When you take them off, after having them on for a while, the noise was like being in a jet engine. Highly reccomended.

The Car

Rented a car from Thrifty, over the NET of course. It must of took us forty-five minutes to get the car. While we had no issuse with our reservation or the car, the people in front of us and several people who calle dont he phone did. One call was from some one whom had rented a car and the tire was flat. He wanted some road-side assistance. The thrifty agent siaid that they do not provide roadside assistance.

While there I asked how I would get to our hotel. The rental agent handed me a phone and I calleed the hotel. I was put on hold. Later the call dropped. The car rental agent said he knew right where the hotel was and provided a map that he kept circleing spots on the map where I was to turn and where the hotel was. The car rental agent had no nice detailed maps like I was used to from a car rental agent.

He tried to call the hotel and met with similar results. He said the service “sucks” on St. Thomas.

Interestingly, they had an award for the “Best Rental Compnay” form the New Paper.

The Hotel “Bluebeards Castle and Villas

We tried to use the car rental agents directions without much success. I called the hotel again and asked for directions. The “directions” were amazing. You go down the “main” to the police station and ya keep on going. Ya go on around the bend and ya keep on going. I am not sure if it was a result that maybe the person trying to give directions has never driven or what but the directions did not work.

After driving around on the wrong side of the road (they drive on the left here) for a while I pulled over and ask Molly to call. She of course had fun with the person. As she was talking on the phone, I noticed a distincttive stucture down the roadf on top of a hill and siad never kmind I can see the hotel.

Interesting place. Not fancy but Island Casual. Parts of the place seem very old and some seems much newer. Fraklin Rsevelt stayed here, well the sign says visited here in 1934.

There is a pool and the location is good. Fairly high on a hill with good views on all sides.

The Digs

Actually we were pretty concerned about the hotel as the places we had been driving around were, well, not what we had been accustomed to. But to our delight the palce seems fine.

Sitting higher than most of the places overlooking the “amile Harbor”

The First Meal

The hotel, as I had read was well known for thier restautants. They have two. The “Room with a View’ which is a up-scale, table cloth, low lighting type place. The “Bannan Tree” was a more causual place, or as they call it “Isalnd Casual” (No swim suits or sleveless shirts). We were promptly asked if we had a reservation and of course we did not. We wer offered on of three tables by the bar. The food was great but the service was from the bartender whom had too many things on his mind.

We did meet the owner, Elizibeth, who was taking reservations and assisting with seating near our table. She mentioned she had came here on her “first” honey moon and then returned to visit a girlfrined twenty-nine years ago and she was still here. She mentioned that her and her husband, Jerry, owned the restaurant. They used to have other restaurants, but thye were  destroyed byt the “hurricane” and they decided to come here.

So the food was good the service not so good and the price was higher than expected at $80.00 for food and a two drinks.

The Internet

Well I tried from the room last night with no success, but here by the pool I found a open wireless connection. Ah, life is good.

St Thomas 2005 Vacation Day One

The Sunrise

I am an early riser. So I like to see the sun rise. St Thomas, St. Thomas where we are sits in a basin surounded by hills. The Sunrize happens beyond the hill where we sit and so the sun is not visible as it rises from the horizon. Yet as always, it is a neat time of the day. You can hear roosters off in the distance as the city awakens.

No one appears to be awake in the hotel area. All is quiet except he constant fans frm the air conditioners.

A large crusie ship is dacking at the port. As I understand the crusie ships, they travel at night so when the people awaken they can be at a port.

Shopping

This is the place for shopping. When the crusies ships dock the shops fling thier doors open and the frensy begins. Jewlery sales is available everywhere. Why here?

Lots of jewlery. The variety of jewlery is amazing. any style from anywhere. The shop keepers are as varied as the jewels. A gentleman from India, been there for years. Had been married 30 years and said; “Keep the wife happy and whole familly will be happy.” A young women was from Norway. She related she just wanted a change.

Visisted a Dive shop and spoke with an great guy that told how they do thier dives in 40 ft of water and over a ship wreck.

The shops at the docks are amazing. the shops are in buildings like store-n-lockit buildings, row after row of buildings.

Breakfast

Dive shop guy reccomended a place arround the corner so we tried it. Two elderly women were working and as rental guy said, the service sucks. We were never even acknowledged we arrived. We sat patiently while they did their thing with this customer and that custumer and dissappeared int othe back and then reaapeared. Then we got a glance with a gaze of well, what do you want? We really only wanted coffee and a roll or something and the food was ok, but still expensive.

Lunch

Saw a tee shirt a guy was wearing that said; “When a person gets physically tred, one should rest. When a person gets emotionally tired, one should move one” -gladys It was an advertisement for a restaurant. So that was where we went for lunch. Good choice. The food was great. Watch out for the hot sauce, they are not kidding. The waitress was fun and much more attentive than most.

The Ocean

The “Bluebeard Resort” has a beach club down the road and a round the bend that is on the ocean. We went for a drive and stopped there for a dip in the ocean. The beech was nice, a little rocky but anytime you can get in the ocean is not bad. Sun was great.

Supper

The “Green House” We think as there is a picture of a parrot after the word “Green” is is really the Green parrot House”. We had grouper sandwiches, they were great. The cole slaw was a little spicy and not to our taste. The Margerittas were also better than most and two-for-one. We asked “jack” the waiter if he knew who had the really big sailbost that were docked on the water front. He said no, but the one was the world’s largest single mast sloop at 230 some feet and was about 50 million dollars.

 

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

What Is Strong Authentication ?

I can't find a consistent definition.

Secure Computing says,
"Strong authentication refers to systems that require multiple factors to identify users when they access private networks and applications. These authentication systems use advanced technology, such as token-generated one-time passcodes, to verify (authenticate) a user's identity."

Fermi National Labs says,
"Strong authentication is a form of computer security in which the identities of networked users, clients and servers are verified without transmitting passwords over the network.

Chris Ceppi implies tow factor and "other" forms of strong authentication;
"Users establish their identity using two factor or other forms of strong authentication and then their identity is asserted on their behalf from these strong authentication points."

So, Strong Authentication must be offer:

  1. An authentication method must be strong, no it must offer a virtually undeniable method of Authentication.
  2. Strong authentication must be able to be used by onsite employees, but also to remote employees, business partners and customers.
  3. Easy for the users remembering The Law of Human Integration. This is vital as if it is difficult, users will do "cheat sheets" to get around the difficulty.

What are the options?

If we insist on tokens it is a problem. I have a couple bank cards and too many credit cards. As I access most of my account through some form of electronic access, I am often ask to provide a pin for the bank cards. Now I do use two pins, but if I had ten different bankcards, I would not be able to remember ten different pins.
Likewise, as a consultant that works with many different organizations, I have many different "token" devices. Not only is it difficult to make sure these tokens are secure, but it is also getting to be a problem remembering which token is used for which organization. 

Worse, some of the organizations have more than one token. Okay, many have more than one token.

So what is the answer ?

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Strong Authentication

 Nick Owen commented on “Strong Authentication” and points out his viewpoint. Nick makes some great point, keeping in mind that he apparently works for “WikiD” that is billed as; “a Two-Factor authentication without the hassle factor”.

From thier technology page:

Architecture Overview

Fundamentally, WiKID works this way: A user selects the domain they wish to use and enters the PIN into their WiKID client. It is encrypted with the WiKID Server's public key - assuring that only that server can decrypt it with its private key. If the server can decrypt the PIN and it is correct and the account is active, it generates the one-time passcode (OTP) and encrypts it with the client's public key. The user then enters their username and the OTP into whatever service they are using, a VPN e.g., which forwards it to the WiKID Server for validation.

That’s is a new twist on “token” usage. So we have a “PIN”, a “Username”. Is that “Strong” authentication ?

As point out by Dave Kerns “A password should be sufficient to protect a printer from misuse. A bank vault will require controls that are more stringent. But what about the launch sequence of a nuclear missile?”

So, how would we rate WiKID for usage:

  • Printer;Sure
  • Bank Account:; Probably
  • Nuclear Missile; Probably Not.

Is the WiKID Client:

  1. An authentication method must be strong, no it must offer a virtually undeniable method of Authentication.
  2. Strong authentication must be able to be used by onsite employees, but also to remote employees, business partners and customers.
  3. Easy for the users remembering The Law of Human Integration. This is vital as if it is difficult, users will do "cheat sheets" to get around the difficulty.

-jim

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Vacation 2005 - Getting Ready

Things ya just gotta Know:

  • Passports for U.S. Citizens are not required for the U.S. Virgin Islands, but you must be prepared to show evidence of citizenship upon leaving (such as a birth certificate and photo ID).
  • The U.S. Virgin Islands are in the Atlantic standard time zone, one hour ahead of Eastern standard time (during daylight savings time only).
  • Virgin Islanders drive on the left side of the road.
  • English is the official language.
  • Our currency is the U.S. dollar. Traveler's checks and major credit cards are honored.
  • Postage in the U.S. Virgin Islands is the same as stateside. First-class mail to the U.S. automatically travels by air through the U.S. Postal Service.
  • You can direct-dial from the United States Virgin Islands to the U.S. mainland. The service connects callers to Europe and South America.
  • The electrical current is the same as in North America (standard 120 volt/60 cycle).
  • Tipping of 15 percent to 20 percent is customary for good service. Some hotels automatically add a service charge.
  • 340 is the area code for all U.S. Virgin Islands phone numbers.
  • Casual clothes for warm weather. Our average temperature ranges between 77ºF and 83ºF.
  • Plenty of sunscreen. The use of sunscreen is recommended at all times, even on overcast days.
  • Take all the pictures you like, but please help us protect the islands' delicate ecological balance. Removing sea fans and living coral is against the law;
    Collecting shells from the sea is strongly discouraged.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

GMAIL Same as Yahoo?

Sure, I went out and got an account couple of weeks ago like everyone else. I went and looked at GMAIL and thought, yea, it is kind of cool. But, I kept thinking it sure looks like Yahoo mail. Okay the Spell Checker is better at GMAIL.

I thought the GMAL drop down user list was pretty cool. I spoke to Scott and he was saying how cool GMAIL was and so I decided to look again.

I checked Yahoo mail and they had just re-designed their user interface and it now supports the drop down user list. Yahoo still needs to work on the Spell Check. But All in all, they are a lot a like. The layout looks the same and it sure looks like the same product.

Then a real difference was found the GMail Drive shell extension.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Good Bumper Sticker

Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Backup Your SMTP Server

My email server went belly-up this week and so I have again been thinking about a backup SMTP server so when my SMTP server is down, I do not loose mail. So here is what I understand needs to be done. Any suggestions or comments are appreciated.

Before we can understand how you could have a backup SMTP server, it is necessary that we understand some the "normal" operations of a outgoing mail, (SMTP) server.

SMTP and Mail relaying
When sam@sender.com sends email is sent to joe@ourdomain.com, his email client sends the message to his designated SMTP server. Due to spammers that often make use of http://mail-abuse.org/tsi/ar-what.html (mail relaying), SMTP servers should employ some method to determine that the user should be using this SMTP server.

The SMTP server It is the SMTP servers "job" to deliver the message to the SMTP server for the ourdoamin.com. The sender.com SMTP server determinse the receiver.com's SMTP server by querying DNS and asking for record of type MX. Sender.com's SMTP server then attempts to send the message to the MX record with the highest "priority" record which is the record with the lowest number.

If receiver.com's SMTP server does not answer, he trys the next higher priority record which is the next bigger number record of the type MX.

So, if we wanted to setup a backup SMTP server for ourdomain.com, we would need the administrator of backupdomain.com to setup his server to accept incoming messages for ourdoamin.com as an ETRN mail domain. The details of the ETRN fuction are defined in RFC 1985.

We should then verify that backupdomain.com will indeed accept email for ourdoamin.com. This can be performed by telneting to the backupdomain.com's SMTP server on port 25 and entering the following:
OK, connected to smtp.backupdomain.com...
< 220 backupdomain.com SMTP ready
> HELO someserver.dnsvr.com
< 250 backupdomain.com Pleased to meet you
> MAIL FROM:<test@ourdomain.com>
< 250 Sender OK
> RCPT TO:<someone@somedomain.com>
< 250 Recipient OK
> DATA
< 354 Send message, end with <CRLF>.<CRLF>
> From: test@ourdomain.com
> To: someone@somedomain.com
> Subject: SMTP Test (smtp.backupdomain.com)
>
> If you received this, then the mail server (smtp.backupdomain.com) is probably working.
> .
< 250 OK

If you receive any message that starts with 5##, like
< 571 Remote sending only allowed with authentication!
Then the backupdomain.com will NOT accept mail for your domain.

NOTE: You can also go to http://www.zoneedit.com/smtp.html and do this test.

Once we have the above ETRN host defined and working, we then must add backupdomain.com to ourdomain.com's DNS as a MX record with a bigger number than ourdomain.com's MX record.

That should work.

Friday, March 26, 2004

Looking for a new GIG or Job

As I am an independent contractor, I am always looking for work. Wondering where I will find that next gig to keep some money flowing in.

I also keep a pretty close eye on full-time pposistions thinking I might find some place I fit.

I am always amazed what I see in the write-ups for these jobs. I saw one that said requirements:
Oracle DBA
Micorsoft SQL DBA
J2EE
LDAP
Programming in C++, C#, java, VB
Nettegrity Sitminder
Cleartrust

Rate 50-60

Well let's see. I at least know what these things are. But can anyone tell me what J2EE is and how you rate experiance in something like J2EE and .NET. I woudl call these frameworks or techonologies. J2EE consistes of many technologies and products that no one person coudl be an expert in all of the differnet areas.

I know many people who make their whole carreers on being an Oracle DBA.

LDAP is rather obscure to most people, I considered myself to be an expert at most areas of LDAP, but I do not consider myself a LDAP admiistrator. That is someone who works at aa LDAP server vendor's console every day.

Now just covering entries I have, I know of no one who could honestly answer an job description asking for these Items as requirements.

And if they did, do you think they would work for that rate!

Vacation Day 3

Choices

One of the biggest things I noticed about the parks is the number of them. People casully mention Disney World, but there are at least four parks near Oralando that are Disney parks. Universal has at least three and Sea World has at least two. Just figuring out what park has the right character that the one child just can't miss can take hours.

Universal Studios, Island of Adventure.

If you are a comic book person, you need to go here. Spiderman to Lil Abner are all here. So is Jimmy Buffet's Margarittaville. I couldn't get any takers on the Hulkster, the big roller coaster, but they all said the Spidermnan ride was very good. It is a virtual ride based on the flight simulator technology. You are in a can that has three ranges of motion and watch a movie that shows your trip.

Long day, kids were exhausted, but would not admit it.

Grandma has declared tomorrow a day of hanging out at the pool. Wel see how well that works.

Getting Ready for Vacation

The Flight

Oh, and have you ever tried to book seven people on one flight ? For this vacation, I tried to book four adults and three children on one fight and none of the online places would allow you to do more than six. So I tried to make two bookings, no luck, the online service said they had no tickets. Seems these online services buya block of tickets and when they sell them they are out of tickets. So I used some of my frequent flyer miles and book myself on a different flight. Anyone else seen this phenomeno and fould a way to beat it?

The rental Car

So, four adults and three children for a rental car. Well I signed up for a "mini-van". Seems none of the rantal places had any "non-Mini-Vans" and they had no big boats like Suburbiuns or Excurssions. The write-up said okay for seven. When I picked up the mini-van, the clerk at the front desk said it wowuild be tight if we had much luggage. I was thinking "much luggage" wonder what that is.

Turns out we did not have much luggage, it was fine. Perhaps the luggage was a little crowded.

Vacation Morning, day One.

Vacations are one of those things. Those things where you fell like you should want to go, but you are never sure why.

I get up early. When people are on vacation, they do NOT get up early. Well, except me. So I always up set them when on vacation. anyhow, it is 5:10am an we are in Orlando Florida. We ==My wife, two of our children and our three grand-children. Of course no one else is up.

We are at the Hilton Grand Vactions ??? and it is quite nice, especially for the "kids". Sea World is less than a mile away and Mickey land is a short drive or they have shuttles to Mickey and Universal Studios. The really bad news, there is no Broadband Internet access and the phone rates for Internet acess is early 1990 rates. I will have ot mention this to someone. No wireless networks deteced either. Um, maybe an opportunity. I have a nephew that does wireless broadband for places like this.

 

2004 Vacation, Day 2

Seaworld yesterday

It was a good time for the kids. Lots of thinks they certainly would not see anywhere else. Saw Sahmu. The question of do they think or only react certainly is a question after seeing them perform.

 

 

Friday, March 19, 2004

Tim Bray's Got a New job.

"I As of today," writes Tim Bray in his popular blog, "I work for Sun." ("Let's see; Java rocks. Microsoft sucks. I can play that tune," he adds, with a characteristically mischievous tone.)

Sunday, March 14, 2004

FDA urges trace technologies to secure drug supply chain

From http://www.gcn.com/vol1_no1/daily-updates/24974-1.html A new way to think of identities. The FDA is proposing that "drugs" be tracked with RFID tags to stem the counterfeit drug trade. As I understand it, one of the reasons drugs are cheaper from Canada than in the US is that the Drug companies fund their research from the "high" prices charged to persons in the US and then make contractual agreements with companies like Canada for "cheap" drugs. These contractual agrements include NOT selling to persons in the US.
 

 

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