I'm in the building industry in the Chicago area
and had an interesting conversation the other day
with one of my suppliers. In the past I've heard
the phrase “You'll never lose your job sticking
with Microsoft.” I don't believe that's the case
anymore; the supplier I just mentioned, this week,
let go of its IT guy of the last 12 years because he
wanted to stick with Microsoft and wouldn't consider
any Linux alternatives.
Joseph B. Roth
Man, that October 2004 issue rocks. I particularly enjoyed Forster's “The Politics of Porting”. It's always a good story when someone bets it all and wins.
Hollenback's “Point-to-Point Linux” brought back
memories of how we used Linux for T1 connectivity
at Wayport. There is a single-port LMC (now SME)
T1 card in every Wayport hotel.
Many Fortran programmers now use Linux, and there are
about ten vendors selling Fortran 95 compilers for
Linux. I would like to make Linux Journal readers
aware of two open-source Fortran 95 compilers under
development, g95 (see www.g95.org) and
gfortran (see www.gfortran.org). g95 is
already able to compile many large production codes,
as listed on the g95 site. gfortran will become part
of the Gnu Compiler Collection, gcc.
I am an LJ subscriber and Linux user. Every month I read the magazine cover to cover and always enjoy every article, especially if it has some electronic device involved, like the USB programming articles or some embedded Linux device like the Linksys wireless router.
One article I always read with special attention is
Cooking with Linux by Marcel Gagné. Besides the
technical information, I always am excited to see
what wine will he talk about each time. And until
now, and I think I am not mistaken, he has never
mentioned the fine wine from my country, Portugal.
I expect Marcel to correct this fault in one of the
next issues of LJ. I will not give any example
of Portuguese wine here, because I am confident Marcel
will find the finest brands of Portuguese wine.
Regards to all. Keep the good work.
I believe he already may have some wine from Portugal in the cellar. Check page 26. —Ed.
Here is an image of a cute wine bottle; Francois may want to buy a case or two for the Linux chef. It was recently featured at a party to celebrate a successful prototype of my Wi-Fi HackTenna Project.
Wow, EV1 has a full page ad (November 2004, page 87). Could
this be the same EV1 caught consorting with SCO's
“Linux License” scams last year?
Yes, EV1 gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to The SCO Group, the company known for its apparently baseless legal attacks on Linux. At the time, some posters to the EV1 message board wrote that they were Linux users canceling their accounts over this controversial decision. —Ed.
I read Don Marti's October 2004 column with interest. I agree that Linux is quite a way ahead of some OSes when it comes to security. SELinux is an excellent example of this. However, I differ with Don concerning his plan to implement SELinux for “simple bastion hosts such as name servers”. Although SELinux does bring a lot to the table, it is probably overkill for the majority of applications Linux is used for. When you increase the security of a system you reduce its usability. In the majority of cases, following a few simple steps will result in a very secure system without having to implement SELinux.
1) Perform OS installation disconnected from a network and install only those packages that are required for the system to function. 2) Install updated packages from media (CD-R, tape) created on another system. 3) Configure system services to run in as secure a mode as possible. For example, run BIND in a chroot()-ed environment. 4) Consider implementing a host-based firewall solution. 5) Enable comprehensive logging and develop processes that allow you to examine your logs thoroughly. 6) Keep your system packages up to date.
An excellent source of information to help secure
Linux, and several other OSes (as well as Oracle
and Apache) can be found on the Center for Internet
Security Web site at www.cisecurity.org.
On a name server, where no users need to run applications, the extra layer of protection could be worth the setup. See page 56 for more on SELinux. —Ed.
Almost time to renew—I got my second reminder a while back. Then the November 2004 issue arrives and contains very little I can even understand, let alone need. Some of your articles are so focused that surely no more than two or three people in the world could benefit from them. Oscar?? Lots of cluster stuff. Event mechanisms???
Big debate on whether to renew. I can see what Marcel's article is about, but can't see anyone needing to do it. Some useful ideas on bash in the Paranoid Penguin article. No Best of Tech Support. Mostly a wasted edition.
Then I see Coming Next Month!!! Entertainment. Just the thing I need help with. Yes—renew. And tell Dave—he'll want to see this too. We'll just hope they address the problems I keep having: sound, video and USB. And hope for more desktop stuff: Bash, gimp, spam control and USB help.
I'd like to end with “Keep up the good work”, but
have to make it, “Help me more.”
The check is in the mail.
After seeing the Tux cake in the November 2004 issue, I just had to send you a photo of the Tux cake one of my LAMP students made to celebrate the end of the Summer semester.
Great seeing Sweden featured in your LJ Index, October 2004.
Unfortunately, the figures are a bit outdated as we are now
officially 9+ million living here.
aka Martin S.
I was cruising Netcraft and saw that the LinuxWorld Conference and Expo site is hosted on Microsoft Windows and IIS. I think a small letter-writing campaign could fix that problem. I think mentioning this in the editorial section would generate enough hate mail for these guys that they would correct their oversight.
I'm sure we could gather up resources to build,
configure and maintain that server from volunteer
resources. So they would be out only the hosting
It's a good thing hate mail doesn't work, or everyone with software to promote would be flaming you. If you want to attend a conference with a Linux-based Web site, try linuxsymposium.org. —Ed.