Tuesday, December 18, 2007

R.I.P. Zorane

Zoran Radevic, my dear beloved father, has passed away at a middle age on the 6th of December, one day after my nameday (St. Savvas, Greek Christian Orthodox). As a medical doctor, specialised in Internal Medicine and Cardiology, he was great at his work, his patients can all confirm that. One of the main reasons he couldn't stay in life longer was because of his condition, Wilson's disease. He was diagnosed at an early age, about 9 years old, but the problems had already began to gather up due to the already piled Cuprum (copper). The problems became vivid day by day, until he decided to take his chances and do the inevitable transplantation about 2 years ago. After a whole of 3-4 months of waiting, a donor was found to be compatible with my father's body tissues and size (among other things). With a 60-70% of chance to survive, enormous inner strength and pride have made him a fighter, a fighter that wants to survive the worst moments in his life and yes, he did pull it through, the surgery was successful.
But compatibility problems have appeared 6 months after the surgery. The immunosuppressive drugs weren't doing their job anymore, so my parents decided to do a retransplantation to try once more, maybe he was lucky enough to find a donor in time. But, as all patients of immunosuppressive therapy, he faced the big problem: bacteria. A type of Klebsiella species has invaded his body and it made sure he couldn't do the tranplantation in time. Klebsiella spp. usually comes from the hospital staff, and it's probably the reason why my father had to confront with this nosocomial infection. 4 months have passed since that event, and the microbiological tests were still positive for bacteria. As long as those tests were positive, he couldn't do anything that involved surgery, since that would be characterized as a high-risk action and of course no one would do anything but to try and clear out the infection.
My dad was one of the main reasons I'm studying medicine, and again the reason why I've chosen to study at the Medical school of Belgrade university, since that's the place where my parents met during studies.
What surprised me the most was that at the day of his funeral and the first Sunday afterwards (Greek Cypriots call it μνημόσυνο, in memoriam of the deceased) it rained in Cyprus, 3 or 4 times - and Cyprus is an island known for its long drought seasons. It kind of makes you think about possibilities and coincidences as well as afterlife.
After his death and his funeral, I am proud to be his son, I cannot thank him enough for being there when he was needed the most, for trying so hard to raise his two children and give them a bright future and a good life. I love you dad, I'll always love you and I know that you will always be with me, every step of the way, to guide me through all my difficult moments.

Rest in peace and may the ground holding your body be blessed with the thousands of thankful souls you have saved.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Xubuntu peerwatch or university rootkit?

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usAfter I've read Ubuntu's weekly newsletter and the blog post from washingtonpost, your not-so-friendly neighbour, a notorious group of people who are deluged in money, the same group who have successfully tried to ashame themselves in the past, have done it again, by infridging the GPL license!
They kept Xubuntu trademarks and artwork and made / published their own tools that break privacy policies of almost every university.

I'll keep this post short: Democracy or hypocracy? Hypocrites or advanced rootkit bullies? The legend stays to be told...
The so-called Xubuntu "derivative" website can be found here: http://www.universitytoolkit.com/

As a footnote, if you agree to their *ahem* novel of terms and conditions about how it can break your computer, you can check out their work (or temper with their bandwidth) by downloading the newest iso here:
(0.9.2a is not available or someone is hiding the good stuff!)

P.S. Unfortunately, the picture is not associated with the text, but it pretty much explains my thoughts :-)

Update: 19:50 CET - the is down

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Ubuntu Hug Day: 5th December 2007

Give a solution to a bug, you get a hug! At first, when it was announced I thought "hug" was a typo for bug, but I was wrong. It could be a typo that was interpreted to an idea, since the keys "B" and "H" are next to each other.
The rules are:
- There are no rules!
- Anyone can join!
Who can join the Hug Day? Everyone. You don't need to be a developer. You don't need to know how to code. Everyone is welcome. If you don't know how to help, then just stop on by and we'll explain everything to you.
- Anyone can list the bugs they want to be fixed.

Join #ubuntu-bugs at Freenode IRC Network for a great hugging experience: irc://irc.ubuntu.com/#ubuntu-bugs
More at: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbuntuBugDay

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Ubuntu Hardy Heron 8.04 plans

As of today (29th November 2007), Ubuntu's next big release, Ubuntu Hardy Heron 8.04, which will be a Long Term Support release, just like Ubuntu 6.06 LTS, I've noticed a milestone announcement about it. It contains 9 blueprints and about 32 targetted bugs for now.
Ubuntu developers have expressed their desire to focus more on fixing the bugs of the applications that are already contained in Ubuntu, rather than reviewing new applications and their updated versions - thumbs up for that decision!

The tracker search tool will be reviewed, OpenOffice.org suite will also get its bugs fixed by April 2008 (the expected month of release), same stands for several other important applications. Let's hope there will be more in that list :-)

torrentpowered.com is fake

Cant Play/View Movie Properly?
Try This: Rename the .avi extension to .rar, the movie file should be inside the .rar
We did this due to repeated Copyright Violation Allegations (copyright infractions) by Numerous Studios.
Step number 2:
Is The Movie (.avi file) Asking for a Password?
Please go to: www.torrentpowered.com/pass.htm for your pass it should only take a min. :)
We apologize for the inconvenience, Thank You
If you downloaded a torrent, like this topic and came out to be something else way unexpected (with the file "How to Play The Movie Properly.txt"), well, welcome to the fake world! Yes, it is fake, and yes, I know it bites. Looks like some copyright trolls have got their tenticles around the bittorrent network, or it's just a "bright" young fellow that wants to get rich with pennies!

Either way, the password is (yes, big capital A, all the rest small letters): Alerts
...and as they say at that lame website "Enjoy your Movie =)", whatever you may have downloaded. I'll have to warn you though, it might be an adult movie, so do a preview first before you present it to your children.

Update: www.omegatorrents.com is the same website as torrentpowered.com, same pass.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Mozilla Firefox: 7-year-old bug fixed!

I just read a blog of a friend and thought to join about the "victorious" bugfix.
I adore my hotkeys / shortcut keys. I was tired of switching back and forth languages while writing. Due to this bug, which developers have ignored for the sake of the 2% of users (and partly because they didn't care). So, after a *lot* of comments (around 200) and expressed deep frustration, someone decided to patch it, and another one, aaand one more, until the patch finally got reviewed and added to the trunk!

Looks like GNU/Linux and GTK are alive after all :)

Monday, November 26, 2007

Re: Y!News

Always trying to stay informed, I just read at Yahoo! News that Kosovo's leaders are ready for opposition "in case -beep-". It seems as though more and more people are promoting the Albanian flag when arguing about Kosovo. Take a look at the pictures they took, talking about the people protesting for the independency of Kosmet (Kosovo and Metohija) - all showing up the Albanian flag and calling them "people" as if all of the residents of Kosovo want the independence. I have nothing against Albania or its residents, but do you think it's wise to pour oil over fire?

If you're looking for the real reasons of how all this mess started, you've come to the wrong blog - I'm stating my thoughts here. The reason I'm ranting about the whole thing is because they're passively promoting their side of the story, and the reporters aren't much of a help here. Where are the photographs of the protests we're making? Sure, they're covering a fact in Austria, but what happened to the "both sides of the story" part?
The United States [...] that the Ahtisaari plan was the best option if the two sides could not reach agreement.
Remarkable, as was the Annan plan for Cyprus back in 2002; No wonder Cyprus is still opposed to EU-supervised independence of Kosovo!

You could say I'm promoting ethnicism, in fact, you could say pretty much whatever you like. Would India let go of Taj Mahal? Would Muslims ever give up on Mecca or Medina? You know the answer to those questions, hence in turn, would Serbia just dismiss its Christian Orthodox heart at Kosovo?
It's true that the people in Serbia are alarmed of the utterly heated up situation. I'm not Nostradamus, but I can foretell that everything points out to the inevitable... we just have to wait and see. My personal opinion is that we don't need any more countries in the Eastern Europe and a note to America would be: How about stop picking someone else's nose and face your own internal problems?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Medicine: The power of memories

Yesterday I tried to make a tuna fish salad again, but with minimal ingredients this time; I didn't have cucumbers nor peppers! Anyway, one of the most amazing things just happened while I was squeezing a lemon over the freshly cut onion - my nose caught the scent which reminded me of souvlakia-sheftalia (σουβλάκια-σιεφταλιά, ражњићи), which I haven't tasted for almost two years!
Souvlakia-sheftalia is a Greek/Cypriot traditional specialty usually served with salad or half an onion and half a lemon, all packed in a nice pocket-shaped bread (pitta - yes double 't'). Memories can be quite amazing sometimes.

Now on to the real part: Memories! Your memories aren't but chemicals, nicely organised in neuron, waiting to be released. When the human nose catches a familiar smell within a respected range, the smell could be connected to some old memories, in my case, FOOD! I believe the term for this occasion is "Olfaction memory". But how is this connected?

I won't go into many details, but here's a brief road-map: The human nervous system has been divided into two big parts, the central (CNS) and the peripheral nervous system (here is a short summary of the NS stucture I made). CNS consists of the brain and the spinal cord.
Somewhere in your brain, there's a Hippocampus is one of the main parts of the Limbic System, controlling emotion expression and memory. The amygdala play a big role for the expression of emotions such as sadness, need to reward/congratulate or fear, anger, etc. Don't forget that emotions can often be triggered by a smell - like the sweet, sweet smell of souvlakia! Argh, now I'm hungry again.

Anyway, the memory part is controlled mainly by hippocampus (thank God there's Wikipedia to show where it is, so I'll be able to keep this short). Its name is given from its shape - in greek (or latin for that matter), ιππόκαμπος means sea-horse. If you damage this baby you'll end up either losing your ability to memorise new things (anterograde amnesia) and probably access to memory before the damage (retrograde amnesia). At patients that suffer from Alzheimer's disease, the hippocampus is probably one of the primary parts of the brain that is damaged.
Before you start nagging that this is a huge and boring post, there is one more thing I'd like you to see, the rhinencephalon and the olfactory tract. Some thousands (correct me if I'm wrong) of olfactory neurons, that hang on the top border of your nose (ethmoid bone), send signals through the olfactory tract all the way to the olfactory or piriform cortex. As you can see, it is tightly connected to the Limbic system, hence the connection between the senses and emotion expression or memory recall. Each sniff you take is "encoded" to several bits of local depolarisations, if they're enough they're added up and create an action potential and finally sent towards your brain, an impulse to the limbic system in our case. Although the neurons between the limbic system parts go into an loop, the system has several cut-points, points where the axons are connected with other neurons, therefore points where new signals take place in the loop. From there, the amygdala send direct orders to the brain to bring me a sense of euphoria or satisfaction and the hippocampus retrieves the information from the long-term memory "database" about the specific smell.

Imagine this post as a backstage pass; not to a Madonna concert, but to one of your many body functions :-)
You disagree on anything of the above? State your opinion by writing a comment.

Friday, November 16, 2007

New Ubuntu flavour on the horizon

I've seen the announcements about Ubuntu going mobile, the Ubuntu security testing platform (nUbuntu), the Ubuntu that consists of free software (Gobuntu), the Ubuntu with enlightenment (Elbuntu), but we haven't seen any virtualisation plans - until now that is.

Ubuntu has announced a new derivative of Ubuntu, Ubuntu JeOS 7.10. It is pronounced "juice" for a reason that I do not know, probably for readability and direct connection to the "core" idea: all the ubuntu juice for virtual appliances!

I'm detecting a cooperation with VMware somewhere here, I run a google search about JeOS and got a very nice review of the new operating system... in JUNE! The new OS (I'm talking about the 7.10 version) was announced just yesterday. As they say at the console blog, JeOS is a thinner version of an operating system that matches exactly the needs of the virtualisation applications and its hardware. Smaller, more secure, easier to manage. I think these reasons are enough and that my cooperation theory might stand on reality.

Get juiced! Why? Srinivas Krishnamurti explains:
An OS finely tuned to the application it supports is smaller, more secure, easier to manage, and higher performing than a general purpose OS. A smaller footprint means IT organizations can run more instances per server. Tailoring the OS specifically to the app enables the removal of vulnerable components such as the browser from Windows and therefore significantly reduces the number of vulnerabilities and patches required to address those vulnerabilities.
The 7.10 version is ready for download, click here. You might find a screenshot tutorial about it at ςςς.ελληνικούρες.ψομ.

Meanwhile, a couple of my friends and I have established the Cyprus Ubuntui LoCo team, you can visit the wiki page by clicking here. The page is still under construction and we haven't managed to get the ubuntu-cy.org domain yet, but it is just a matter of time. The logo on the right was my initial recommendation, but it seems that the founder prefers the logo you see at the wiki page (I've colourised both logos, you can view the "series" here).

Sunday, November 11, 2007

News: Google sued over patent infridgement

Credit should be given where it is due... maybe Google forgot that or maybe they did come up with the lovely idea of indexing websites and presenting results through a single website, but it looks like someone other than Lawrence Page patented a similar invention some 3 years before the Google creators filed their own patent. This was released in Boston Globe, Computerworld, and probably some thousand blogs by now
You can view the patent by Kenneth P. Baclawski here
I'm not 100% sure if this the corresponding Google patent, but try here or here.

Patents are actually a way of telling someone "You can't step on my grass without paying!", if you browse through at Google Patents search, you'll find out quite a load of inventions brought down and described on paper, i.e. "patented". I bet it's impossible to patent a new invention nowadays and not to cite older ones. Either way, I believe patents are evil - They actually restrict you because someone else had a bright moment and was quick enough to write it down on a piece of paper, and that someone now requests to receive from Google a "noble" (try "adequately enormous") royalty.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Homo bardus

bardus = stupid, slow, dull.

After the following videos, which probably represent the level of stupidity of the human race at its greatest peak in the 21st century, I believe you'll think twice before a McDonald's chow-down and just where you will take your child.

P.S. New blog design, new approach in life ;)

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Malware: MSN Messenger imageXX.zip

It's a bit old news, but I've seen it, so I'd like to warn people about it, if you see something similar to this:

..then either don't accept the image09.zip image10 image08 image07 or a similar file. It contains an executable (program) such as image09.JPG-www.photobucket.com - DO NOT GET TRICKED!
I'm saying "tricked" because it appears as if the file has a "www.example.com" website in its filename, which is certainly not the case.

I've updated cwean.exe cleaner to detect them, check out the bfu script. If you saw any other files or registry keys, please reply with a comment.

P.S. Have a nice weekend everyone! I'm off to probably visit Kragujevac, a town in Serbia, a friend of mine invited me to celebrate a family holiday with them. I'll probably return with several photos, I've never been there. :)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Lots'a new stuff..

..but I'm still the same! :) It's important to help around in projects you use and like.
In Ubuntu a lot has happened these days, especially after the Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 release; among others:
- Ubuntu OpenWeek
- #ubuntu+1 users have moved on to the next devel release, Hardy Heron
- #ubuntu was practically flooded with users asking for help these days, most of them were related to graphics cards, probably because they wanted to try out the fancy 3D experience provided out-of-the-box for most of them.
- The release after hardy is said to be Grumpy Groundhog, although I personally would prefer to move on to the next letter ("I"), and use my suggestion: Itchy Iguana - I still believe it's catchy!

I'm VERY satisfied with that the developers have accomplished, but I didn't like this:
cat /etc/debian_version
This command returns: lenny/sid
Debian leftovers!
Oh well, it's really a minor "bug", a way if you will to show their direct connection I guess (yes, I'm just guessing).

In my circle of life, there's nothing that is worth publishing, pretty much dull. I'm stuck with 3 exams, which I will probably finish by the end of January, if not all, then I'll try my best for at least 2. The next not-so-important thing is that the central heating of my appartment (in the heart of Belgrade, Slavija) is not functioning correctly. All the buildings in Belgrade have a centralised heating system, all connected to each other if I'm not wrong - well it seems like the appartments on the 8th floor here don't have as much "heat" as expected. I really hope this will get fixed by November, because the temperature has begun to go lower.
My neighbour mentioned to go get an electric heater, but what would be the point of paying a central heating all year long and not actually enjoying one?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Software: Autopatcher is long gone, but...

According to this little announcement, it looks like the autopatcher all-in-one update project has gone down the drain. Instead of Microsoft congratulating and embrasing such a kind security offer from a programmer such as Antonis Kaladis, they send an email for "unlicensed redistribution" of copyright work. If you ask me, Microsoft has never heard of the words: promotion developers software
It might be old news, but I want to point something else. Take a look at how many times the world linux is mentioned! It is a fact that GNU/Linux and *BSD distributions are short of desktop users, but that's not a reason for begging!

I just looove the ranting that followed:
The future is Linux. Let Microsoft commit suicide if they so want to. 1
Looks like this guy never tried APTonCD:
And for all the people who are using this as the reason to jump to linux - good riddance. Make sure to post here after you get your Linux distro installed and have to download a number of packages and updates that makes Windows Update look like a blessing. 2
Nevertheless, this is NOT the ending of the AutoPatcher and easy patching era. As Kaladis has mentioned, the team is working on a web-based solution. If that solution can work with grabbing the downloads directly from microsoft.com, then I believe they can bypass that attorney notification. If that solution could also automatically create an iso image at the end, which would be useful in redistribution, then we're back in secure Windows ;)

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Something to get your day started!

A good day to start your day is by laughing. It doesn't only cheer you up, but laughter also stimulates your immune system. I bet this adorable baby is as healthy as much as it is happy :)

Why do babies cheer you up? Probably because you remember your baby movies and/or photographs. Memories can play a very important role in the brain, especially if they are thoughts of joy. See how much of this can be connected to a single video or photo?
Most feelings are expressed in a special part of the brain, called the limbic system. But anyway, let me not ruin your day with medical facts! I'll bore in some later posts. For now, enjoy your day! :)

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Ubuntu: Foretelling the next release code name

Only a couple of weeks until Ubuntu 7.10 aka Gutsy Gibbon to reach its final stage. It's pretty stable so far, some OpenOffice programs don't work, but I expect that to be fixed, as the bugs are already reported.

I made this post because I've noticed something ever since I was expecting Gutsy Gibbon: the code names given have an alphabetical connection. A shot Ubuntu release history follows; First two releases were named Warty Warthog and Hoary Hedgehog, let's say *hogs. Then came Dapper Drake (6.06), the first long-time support release. After that, Edgy Eft (6.10), followed by Feisty Fawn (7.04) and the lovely Gutsy Gibbon (7.10). Also, the next release is announced to be Hardy Heron (8.04), expected in April 2008.

Have you noticed anything since Dapper Drake? Let's make it clearer: Dapper Drake, Edgy Eft, Feisty Fawn, Gutsy Gibbon, Hardy Heron... The code names follow an alphabetic order, from D to H, so logically the next relase code name would be starting from I. Hooray for Itchy Iguana!

Note: No, Itchy Inguana is NOT the next code name, it's a phrase I just made up - I must admit it does sound catchy though!

Edit (after some sanity check): It came out that this was already mentioned:
"For all of our sanity we are going to try to keep these names alphabetical after Breezy. We might skip a few letters, and we'll have to wrap eventually. But the naming convention is here for a while longer, at least. The possibilities are endless. Gregarious Gnu? Antsy Aardvark? Phlegmatic Pheasant? You send 'em, we'll consider 'em."

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Ubuntu: Unveil the real power of compiz-fusion 3D desktop effects

So, you have Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon's compiz-fusion and want the cool toys like fire writing? For most of them you will need the "super" key (aka windows key), otherwise you need to reset the key combinations which enable the plugins.
Before you begin you should ask yourself: Can my card and computer handle it? If you're unfamiliar, you can go to ubuntuforums.org and post your computer configuration (graphics card, memory RAM, processor and its MHz/GHz), ask them if they think is plausible to use visual effects.

Firstly, we need to setup the software sources, i.e. use the universe. On the menu: System > Administration > Software sources (Type in your password). Since I'm not a source repository fan, I have mine unchecked, you can go ahead and check it, it doesn't hurt to have the source ready for download :) It will ask for you to Reload the data, do that, it basically updates the information about the packages, it may take a while to download the data.
Secondly, make sure you have the appropriate (restricted) drivers for your graphics card (Nvidia NX7300GT in my case). You can install them by going to System > Administration > Restricted drivers manager and checking Enable next to your card. Be sure to restart your computer afterwards.

Next, we use a console (gnome terminal in Gnome, konsole in KDE) to install the compiz manager:
sudo apt-get install python-compizconfig
It should ask for a password again, enter it, press Enter, it might ask you if you are sure, press y and hit Enter again, and it will download the goodies. Once it's done, you can go
enable the visual effects through System > Preferences > Appearance > Visual effects and select the Extra or Custom if your system supports it (see paragraph 2). You might require a restart, although Ubuntu restarted the desktop manager for me.
Finally you can click on Preferences there, or System > Preferences > Advanced Desktop Effects Settings to have complete control over the plugins that are loaded. It may take you a while to get used to it.

Enjoy your new toys!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Nis Petrol Wfest

It looks like Nis Petrol considers to kick-start the developing of Serbia's website representation by throwing in a contest of the best websites out there. Maybe this blog is in English, but the writer is of Serbian origin ;) I changed the blog's logo and filed the blog for the contest!

Updates for the last days?
  1. I haven't passed any of the 3 exams left, it looks like it's going to be "crowdy" for the October examination period, but I'm willing to take a shot.
  2. I've installed Ubuntu Gutsy Tribe 5, 3 days before the Beta release, and today (beta release day) I joined #ubuntu+1 in Freenode IRC Network, and noticed that more than 240 users were in, whereas 3 days before the beta it was a simple sum of 40-50. What I didn't like is that they do NOT mention the problems with Firefox plugins Flash and Sun Java in the amd64 (64-bit) version of Ubuntu 7.10. I used the nspluginwrapper solution for flash, since Gnash (the free swf player) isn't still completely usable. I'm still waiting to see what's going to happen with Java.
Have a lovely weekend everyone! I'll probably spend it on my studying.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Away for some days

You might have noticed that lately I don't make posts as frequently as before. I am and will still be away for several days. It's my examination period, I have to focus a lot more on passing my exams than filling out a blog with no apparent reason.

If you like any of my projects, ellinikoures.com (gallery & forum) or erroneous.name (cwean antimalware package - cwean.exe) you're more than welcome to donate a little something for the web hosting - It goes directly to both websites' funding and not in my pocket :)

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Health: Work hours affect your sleep

Remember the two parts of the post Operation Sleepwalk? The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (catchy name!) have concluded, after thorough researches, that work time is a mega factor related to your sleep time:
Sleep time was minimal while work time was maximal in the age group 45-54 years, and sleep time increased both with lower and higher age.(1)
The weird thing is that if you watch a lot of TV you get more eye-shut time:
Except for time spent watching TV, which increased with longer sleep times, all waking activities decreased with increasing sleep time.(2)
Come to think of it, it's not that weird. Your eyes get tired, your eyesight deteriorates, you become a couch potato, need I continue? It's the same thing with gamers. The difference between gamers and TV viewers is the amount of adrenaline - Usually (and you didn't hear this from me) epinephrine (another geeky name for adrenaline) is more or less a deluge to persons that play action games, or games on which they get addicted. It's not bad, but too much is bad.

Keep your gaming skills sharp, your window to the world open (*hint hint* television), but don't stand/sit in front of a computer or a TV all day long!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Security: gotcha! just a hoax

I forgot jokes, or hoaxes if you will, using javascript exist nowadays, all I ever encounter were malware, badware, c***ware.

MissU!~miau@ MSG!#bucuresti http://sg.geocities.com/viceadmiralcongo/dont_click.htm

Don't worry, it's a pure annoying javascript joke (at the point of writing). Imagine a lot of windows or info boxes popping up and alerting you one by one... now imagine clicking "OK" each time ;) You can stop imagining and follow the link above. Sometimes this kind of jokes can be educational, making you aware of several dangers hidden to the eye (that is if you don't check the source of the website).

I love the singing part:
alert("Jingle bells,");
alert("Batman smells,");
alert("Robin laaaaaid an egg,");
alert("Batmobile lost its wheel,");
alert("And Joker's really gh3y,");

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Security: script kiddies have switched to IPv6

My 101st post - wow! Anyway, it seems like (mirc) script kiddies have decided to play with IPv6 from now on:

Free4U!~dfgdgd@ACA67BD9.ipt.aol.com MSG!#romania
Just Free!!! http://1050180165/horde/config/update/www.microsoft.com/vista/download/filename
(where filename = update-vista.scr)

Notice the "1050180165". The IP is the new shiny IPv6 (click to read more about it on Wikipedia). The file is a trojan mirc script, allowing the controller to do whatever he wants with your PC. Imposing as a "microsoft vista update", the controller will probably have several hits. Fortunately, it's detected as Parite.B by most antivirus vendors, as tested in Virustotal.

The IPv6 will be a problem to be detected by some IRC channel protection scripts. Thankfully, without the http:// part, it is not clickable, therefore not easy for the newcomers to copy&paste.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Motherboard went *puff*

No, this blog is not dead yet, although my motherboard is. R.I.P. K7N2 Delta2-FSR...

I couldn't turn my computer on for two whole days, I tried almost every "dirty" trick and I finally decided to buy a new one, which took almost a week. Apparently my 4-year old motherboard choked out of the many hours of uptime (one more reason to turn it off every now and then) :(

At least I managed to pull 350€, money meant for "emergency" only. Some could say this was really an urgent matter and since I was buying new stuff, I didn't want to spend it on some old junk. I prefer to buy something that will last for a lot of years. Hence, this is my new computer:

Running Ubuntu Linux, the 4.0 release.
GNOME: 2.18.1 (Ubuntu 2007-04-10)
Kernel version: 2.6.20-16-generic (#2 SMP Thu Jun 7 20:19:32 UTC 2007)
GCC: 4.1.2 (i486-linux-gnu)
Xorg: 7.2.0 (04 April 2007)
Hostname: ubuntu
Uptime: 0 days 0 h 17 min

GenuineIntel, Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU E6550 @ 2.33GHz
Number of CPUs: 2 (Oh yeah!)
CPU clock currently at 1998.000 MHz with 4096 KB cache
Numbering: family(6) model(15) stepping(11)
Bogomips: 4658.47
Flags: fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss ht tm pbe lm constant_tsc pni monitor ds_cpl vmx smx est tm2 ssse3 cx16 xtpr lahf_lm

Total memory: 2027 MB (2x1GB Kingston)
Total swap: 996 MB

SCSI device - scsi0
Vendor: ATA
Model: WDC WD800JD-00MS
SCSI device - scsi1
Vendor: ATA
Model: WDC WD3000JS-60P

Host bridge
Intel Corporation 82P965/G965 Memory Controller Hub (rev 02)
Subsystem: Micro-Star International Co., Ltd. Unknown device 7235
Multimedia controller
Intel Corporation 82801H (ICH8 Family) HD Audio Controller (rev 02)
Subsystem: Micro-Star International Co., Ltd. Unknown device 7235

512/128 ADSL (Serbia's a *bit* back on modern stuff)

Model name: GeForce 7300 GT
Card Type: PCI-E 16x
Video RAM: 256 MB
GPU Frequency: 350 MHz

Two tiny problems though:
- It looks like the DVD-RW drive can't boot any live cd; And no, it's not the CD or DVD! I'm going to need another 20€ for a new DVD-RW drive, but it is burning media as well as it reads them, so I'll postpone that for now.
- I also have a Parallel ATA (PATA?) in, which the BIOS and the Windows XP operating system detect, but Ubuntu Linux doesn't. Maybe I should reinstall the operating system, or I'll just wait for 7.10 to arrive, since I'm flushed out of "emergency" money :)

- 512/128 kbits/s ADSL will have to be downgraded to 256/64 until I get my emergency fund back up. I never risk that fund!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Still here, no reason to panic!

You're probably wondering where have I been these days. Well I've added a gallery called "Ελληνικούρες" (pronounced elinikures). The general idea of the gallery is pretty much like Srbovanje in Serbian - you find a picture that makes people laugh, you upload it and share it with your friends!
It has to be connected with Greek, but you're all welcome to fill it up with goodies (there's an approval step, when a moderator will take a close look at what you're uploading)!

A forum will be added soon to the Ellinikoures project, as soon as I see that everything "rolls" well.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Security: Sohanad and win32.VB worms still alive

Sometimes Godaddy and their affiliates, i.e. Servage, make me wonder just how effective their actions are against their own clients that abuse godaddy's ToS (Terms of Service).
One of the things that made me consider this as a blog topic is their apparent inaccessibility to shut down the main domain names. For those who don't know what's going on, the story goes like this:
- thecoolpics.net was ended, after some 6+ months of running the Sohanad.* and win32.VB.* worms
- thecoolpics.com and quicknews.info redirect to a new target as of yesterday, as far as I can tell: auct_photo/temp/ (deliberately put a space between, do NOT visit the website)
- The exploit used here is a VB script exploit, which is actually encoded using Javascript
- The exploit downloads YMworm.exe and worm2007.exe which can be found in the same folder the above mentioned link
- YMworm.exe is actually an AutoIt script and gives a bad name to the good folks of that project. worm2007.exe is just a "backup" program as far as I can tell. It connects to thecoolpics.com and tries to download these two programs from there, probably used when the websites, this lamer (langnghe.net owner) hacked and redirects to, go down.

Final comment: They might be cheap & good in sales, but their abuse team doesn't handle reports very well.

Removal tool: Cwean antimalware package

Update: If you try a Google search for the old hacked website, http://horse.he.net/~dynasty/albums/style/, you'll notice a nice warning message ;) I sure hope they applied that in the Web Forgery system implented in Firefox

I did a google search on the IP of the new one, I found another exploit: /AutoVoLam.html (deliberate space added between) - downloads spider.exe from the same directory.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Websites: Shop with Ashop

There are times I regret that I'm Cypriot/Serbian. Mostly because websites like Amazon and Ebay are all abroad and I have to pay several extra dollars for shipping & handling. If I was in a big first-class country, I'd surely pick up a local e-shop to do my online shopping; speaking of that, Ashop has a lovely presentation on the internet, providing the essential eye-catching shopping cart software for Internet trading businesses. Get your shopping cart ready and we're going in for a review!

Although you might not have an "e-biz" to test it, you definitely have to consider the features provided here:
- Easy shopping cart management
- You don't have to be a programmer to use it
- Free tech support
- Free trial period
- Live presentation (which most companies don't have)

You can choose between 4 pricing plans to suit your online business currently listed as: Light, Ashop 500, Ashop 2000 and Ashop Plus. Each "step" of the plans provides more and more features for e-commerce managers.

To sum it up, I'd say they have what it takes to become one of the few good leading ecommerce software companies. They say they will help their customers with all the steps required for a successful start-up, they gear them up with several easy-to-use editors to customize their websites as much as possible and their tech team is also there to help when things go bad ("oops, low value for load average!").

Friday, August 17, 2007

IRC: irssi 0.8.11 released

In case you're wondering whether there is an advanced IRC for console (KDE konsole or GNOME terminal), irssi is the application for that. Unfortunately, Ubuntu Linux does not provide the new version, only in backports, where most applications are 'shaky'.

Well I've downloaded the application from the packages.ubuntu.com website (here's a direct link to the irssi package, i386 and amd64 compiled). The dependencies can be satisfied with the feisty packages, so it's good to go! I've been using it several days now and I haven't detected any bugs, in fact they fixed most bugs I reported (The joys of open source programming).

When you download the .deb, just double click and hit "install package", it will ask for the administrator password (and you type it of course). Then just open your terminal/konsole (preferrably maximize the windows) and type: irssi

IRC: mIRC 6.3 released

There you have it, from 6.21 a major jump to 6.3, one of the most popular irc client programs. You can grab it from mirc.com. I'm not a Windows fan, so this is beyond my 'reviewer cap', but I'll present the changelog in short:
  1. U3 support.
  2. Full Vista compatibility, all your saved data will be in Application Data\mIRC by default.
  3. mIRC is installed according to your administrator/standard user account.
  4. Traytips are integrated and the balloon messages will be available only if mIRC is not the active application.
  5. Minor bugfixes and updates
Read the rest here.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Security: undetected trojan - svhost.exe

Some people really believe their antivirus software is the best... Here's a proof that they're not. This malware (trojan) is packed with Themida, which most antivirus companies have not yet bothered to include in their blacklists. Not that I'm saying it's good to blacklist packers, but at times I really wonder if it's better than waiting for someone to use it, pack their malware and start spreading it.

Spammer: Fetitz{-A-}!~Ghici@Lov3You.users.undernet.org
Message: poze cu mine si filumete de sex cu mine http://zenzion.net/filename si pe cine intereseaza id meu sexyandreeeaaa pt cei care vor o noapte frt ieftin :) pt mai multe detali intrati pe id meu :) fac si masturbare prin web ce doriti voi :) http://zenzion.net/filename http://zenzion.net/filename http://zenzion.net/filename (language = romanian, filename = album.rar)

album.rar contained poze.exe, which I've sent to be analyzed using the Anubis project, here are the results.
The executable creates a connection with Undernet IRC Network, waiting for its creator to remotely control and abuse!

Main program: C:\Windows\system32\svhost.exe (the legit one Windows uses is svChost.exe)

MD5 Hashes:
7560272abe35a5b1092779f407c7f03c poze.exe
efc6a66e2884e2d77dab32f7725f31d4 album.rar

I've tried to upload the program to the Kaspersky website, and guess what - it doesn't allow more than 1MB to be uploaded. The archive/executable were about 1.4MB.

Removal tool: Cwean antimalware package

Computers: When printers don't work...

This is why I never use a printer, they're sooo evil!

Operation Sleepwalk (Part II)

Resuming from this article...

Relaxation - How relaxed are you? Were you feeling comfortable lying all day in bed? Well, studies have shown that relaxation level does not provide a good sleep. And this does not include yoga, since stretching your legs to a perfect 180 degree or curling it around your neck is actually a (painful at start?) form of exercise

Working out - Your body begs for attention, as does your brain. And I'm surely not recommending working out 10 consecutive hours. That is called exhaustion which further causes debilitation, not exercise! (double click for word definition) I personally have to say that my sleep is better after a 1km walk, 2x1=2km in total if you consider going back to your original starting point (For the American readers: 2 km is about a mile).

Computer gaze - As much as I hate to say it, hours you spend in front of your computer deteriorate your eyesight, make you fatigue (especially programmers gamers and article readers/researchers) and above all gazing at a computer all day can really worsen and aggrevate your sleep. Shut down your computer and take a look outside - there's a whole new world out there just waiting to be explored! You do not need Blizzard to make you a knight with +1 brain skill!

Well this article has come to an end. I hope you liked all the recommendations and suggestions pinpointing problems in sleep and sleepwalking (I might concentrate in insomnia next time). I also believe that after this article you will reconsider at least once before taking medicaments called sedatives :)

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

What was John thinking when Andrew wasn't?

I just had to post this! It looks like someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed... I must admit I've never seen the website John refers to (neither Google Cache nor WayBack provide a link).
He forgot one thing though. With all the ranting going around, John forgot that he is actually providing free traffic and PageRank from a 6/10 website to a minuscule 1999-style blog as he wrote. Bad move #1!

On the other hand, Andrew at andrewtalk.com received free traffic and a mega link from a money making baron. And what did he do? Take the website down for complete re-construction. Bad move #2!

Seems like this person didn't appreciate the "lovely" review from JohnChow. If I were Andrew, I'd make a million dollar homepage instead of a poor "to do" notification. Make bad publicity into good advertising campaign. Come to think of it, he'd definitely gain some Agloco points.

Well my blog isn't that bad I guess, since I dare to post things like this, the only stuff that's not mine on this blog are the images, for which I give a damn good credit with links and quotes.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Security: @RISK Newsletter

@RISK Newsletter and Tippingpoint warn about the security of the following widely used software:
(1) CRITICAL: Multiple Cisco Products Multiple Vulnerabilities
(2) CRITICAL: VMware ActiveX Control Multiple Remote Command Execution Vulnerabilities
(3) HIGH: HP OpenView Products Multiple Vulnerabilities
(4) HIGH: Symantec Norton Multiple Products ActiveX Controls Buffer Overflow
(5) MODERATE: Microsoft DirectX SDK ActiveX Control Buffer Overflow
(6) MODERATE: Astaro Security Gateway Multiple Vulnerabilities

I'd consider a full update/upgrade along with a set of tutorials on how to do it by the products mentioned above, especially VMWare & DirectX users ;)

I'd also like to recommend to use a Mozilla Firefox addon, NoScript, which I personally endorsed a year back and still love it!

A minor news, a new virus has been found called 'Storm Worm'. Read more about it here.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Software: High volume caused poor sound output in Ubuntu Linux

I've noticed a month ago that sound while playing several mp3 songs in Ubuntu Linux has deteriorated. The sound was fine and more than perfect while using Windows XP, and I couldn't remember changing anything.

Then it struck me and I almost yelled "Eureka". I'm using Rhythmbox in Ubuntu so I thought of checking the volume, because I remembered that too high values could cause a bad output!
So I went to Applications > Sound & Video > Volume Control:
I set it to about 90% and the sound was better already, then I went to alter Rhythmbox's internal volume bar:

There, all done! Who said Linux can't be a breeze? It needs some substantia grisea to work though.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


How careless of me, in the need to study and the urge to fill my website with my thoughts as much as possible, I forgot a smart topic I started a couple of months back: Trust. In trust lies the truth or vice versa. But what if trust isn't good enough? What if someone or something is neglected and forgotten, because of the many responsibilities we have in this modern world we live in? What if...

There are many "what ifs" buzzing currently inside me, I'd get lost in the list of them just to put them all down! But who cares? "Hm, care." I mumbled just a few seconds ago, "Interesting word - and topic!".

Browsing answers.com the other day I figured this would be a nice way to test just how readily the Answers website provides a researcher with accurate results. And I was amazed to see that people care for a lot of things: children, money, fame, ratings, family, any objects that remind them of the past or which help them to face towards the right direction...

A troubled or anxious state of mind - strong feeling.
A cause to distress or anxiety - strong cause of feelings.
Careful forethought to avoid harm or risk - strong precaution.
Attractiveness to detail - strong focus and attention.
...watching, guarding, or overseeing - strong protection and providing of guidance.
Systematic application of remedies to effect a cure - strong will to help a fellow human in need using medical knowledge.

All these terms are correct and that's what they are; just terms and explanations. What about the practical real world feeling? The care for children? The attention to the homeless? The help for the neglected, the protection of the family, the urge to cure an ailing person, the need to preserve the environment? All these questions are also problems of the real hard cold-blooded egoistic community we live in, and these problems won't go away on their own. Someone has to care; let that be us!

Volunteers subscribe all the time on various topics, find a project that you'd like to help and just show a sign that you care, by any means possible. The world needs you, the Earth needs you, that chair you're sitting on right now doesn't. Stand up and face problems, be part of something good. Pick up a can of Coke and throw it in the trashcan. Hold the hand of a HIV-positive person with AIDS syndrome. Give a hug to a little abandoned girl (and watch your pockets, I said help and care, not be stupid).

I hope that I've motivated you and you're already on the way somewhere and I believe I've put some light to the right pathway-websites for adequate information on each topic.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Bad Websites: summer.7p.com - do not buy!

Sizzlin rip-off! The owner of this website is the notorious scammer Mike Ogden (or mogden) from Canada. This person pretends to be selling goods on the internet at prices that no smart person would sell, as they'd have to used for 10 years to reach so low prices.
In short, if you know what's good for you:

The website is marked as bad in WOT, an addon for Mozilla Firefox internet browser. It's a good plugin to check whether a website can be trusted or not.

The Canadian police doesn't give a damn about that, he's spamming on the irc about "cheap sales" and rips off people by receiving the money and never sending any goods.
The email he uses at the moment seems to be summergoods@gmail.com - Send him my "regards" ;)

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Websites: Smart Smorty

I've just been approved on Smorty, and I give them a personal big thanks for giving me a chance! Have you ever considered getting paid to blog or even blog advertising? Blogging for money isn't a first thing, there's a dozen of bloggers out there making a living out of simple reviews. It's good to have high ratings on google searches, as smart bloggers can identify what's hot and what's not (we've been through Google Trends).
Smorty is one of many outstanding service networks which actually connect those who want to be advertise and those who, well, like to get paid to review (or advertise if you will). This way, bloggers not only express their personal mind into some products sold or advertised in the Internet, but also they can earn a respected amount of money by doing it.

The only thing bloggers must be aware of is that they pick the right reviews for their websites, merge it somehow in their content. Smorty is actually a new service, I expect to see it grow as my website grows as well :) It has a well-organized website, easy to use as far as I've seen, no extra images, not bloated with 3rd party advertising content, just pure text and links and of course some pending advertisers that would love to be reviewed.

Give it a shot, you'll probably have to wait a couple of months if you own a new website, but it's worth the wait! While you're waiting, you could impress them (any reviewing service can be impressed) with some free reviews of products you personally adore.

P.S. You can browse through my reviews so far by clicking on the reviews label below

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Medicine: Operation Sleepwalk

Sleepwalking (somnambulism or noctambulism)is a serious sleeping disorder, which can be caused by a number of reasons, all building up together to the event of sleepwalk. Sleepwalking does not necessary imply just 'walking', the persons who suffer from this usually begin activities that are normally associated with or supposed to be done while awake, but instead they occur while asleep or in a sleeplike state.
Sleepwalkers can remember several stuff that happened, but not everything, just like when a person tries to remember their younger years and all they get is just bits of memory (leftovers as I like to call them). On the other hand, they could also not remember anything.

What can cause it? I can name a million reasons, but let's be more specific for the real world:
  • Smoking - Nicotine, one of the chief ingredients of cigarettes and a poisonous alkaloid (C10H14 N2), and the number of cigarettes you smoke daily may increase your awareness, but they also increase your stress and wrath levels disrupt your healthy portion of sleep each day.
  • Stress level - Stress is an important part of nowadays life, people running around just to reach their goals - whatever they may be - always trying to achieve as much tasks possible for the day. This can make a person anxious and that's definitely not good for anything.
  • Emotional state - It's very important to be or feel relaxed at least an hour before sleeping. Being tense even when going to sleep could resort to nightmares and of course sleepwalking.
  • Food - Spicy food has been mark as bad for a good night sleep. Bad indigestion could also play an important role here.
  • Alcohol - Wine, beer, whiskey and all beverages that contain alcohol
  • Caffeine - Compared to nicotine, this baby actually tries to help you stay awake, even when your brain requires some rest. Drinking lots of coffee cups while you require to sleep is a really bad idea.
To be continued...

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Security: Undetected potential malware spammed at IRC

I'm not sure if both of the files are malware, but the latter is surely something, if you take a look at the file analysis by the Anubis project. The files were scanned with Virustotal.

#1 where filename = album.exe
Analysis of the file
OnA|R!~Spumant@OnAIR.users.undernet.org MSG!#bucuresti
care vrea sa vada un album erotic al unei fete de 22 de ani din bucuresti ? romirc.com/site/filename

(Romanian - something about an erotic album of a 22-year old girl from bucharest)

#2 - where filename = Maria_Lena_YouTube_Video.avi.exe
Analysis of the file
maria19d!~maric@ACB173A2.ipt.aol.com NOTCCHAN!#cyprus
hi sou, me lene maria kai ime skyla!! an thes na me deis sto youtube video pou ekana me mia fili GYMNES pata edo ->

Anikiti19!anikiti@ NOTCCHAN!#limassol
hi sou, me lene maria kai ime skyla!! an thes na me deis sto youtube video pou ekana me mia fili GYMNES pata edo -> http://www.top10asians.com/filenameServer

(the actual file that can be downloaded is without Server at the end - the language here is Greeklish [greek using latin characters], it says the file is a youtube video, pretends to be a porn video)

Important executables:
c:\program files\windows media player\wm player.exe

The file #2 is added in the list Add/Remove programs of Windows as MyProduct

Removal program suggestion: Cwean antimalware package